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Joni, Rai, Aldous, Pat, Russ, Mark, Celeni, Ros

PROHIBITION
CHUA HIONG V. DEPORTATION BOARD J. Labrador | March 19, 1955
Facts
Chua Hiong was alleged to have secured the cancellation of his alien certificate of
registration with the Bureau of Immigration through fraud and misrepresentation (in
claiming to be an illegitimate child of a Filipino mother named Tita Umandap when
as a matter of fact he is the legitimate child of a Chinese woman by the name of
Sy Mua) and to have maliciously and illegally exercised privileges and rights
belonging to citizens of the Philippines.
Upon the institution of the proceedings by the Deportation Board, a warrant for his
arrest was issued. He filed a bond for his release and thereafter petitioned said
Deportation Board for the dismissal of the proceedings on the following grounds
(1) the jurisdiction to deport aliens exists only with regard to aliens (2) claim of
citizenship is supported by sufficient evidence to entitle him to a declaration of his
citizenship (3) his Filipino citizenship has already been declared by the Secretary
of Labor, in representation of the President, and the same is binding on the other
executive branches of the government, the Deportation Board including. However,
the motion to quash was denied by the Deportation Board.
Petitioner then filed a writ of habeas corpus on the ground that his arrest was
made without jurisdiction; that the Board be prohibited from continuing the
deportation proceedings against him; and that a writ of preliminary injunction issue
to restrain the Deportation Board from hearing the case until after his petition is
heard by this Court.
Issue
WoN Chua Hiongs citizenship should first be determined in a judicial proceeding.
Ratio
YES
Petitioner had obtained original entry as the son of a Chinese father and a
Chinese mother, which fact entirely contradicts his claim of Filipino parentage on
his mothers side, although this fact may perhaps be explained by the desire of his
father to hide the illegitimate filiation of his son. This is therefore a case where the
evidence is neither decisively conclusive in favor of petitioners Filipino citizenship,
nor decisively conclusive against said claim.
The jurisdiction of the Deportation Board to deport exists only with regard to aliens
who are admittedly so. Where, however, a resident is admittedly a citizen, or
conclusively shown to be such, the Board lacks jurisdiction and its proceedings are
null and void ab initio and may be summarily enjoined by the courts.
The Deportation Board has, in the first instance, power to determine the nationality
of the deportee. Its jurisdiction is not divested by the mere claim of Filipino
citizenship. But it must quash the proceedings if it is convinced that the evidence
submitted by the deportee shows that he is a Filipino citizen.
A respondent who claims to be a citizen and not therefore subject to deportation
has the right to have his citizenship reviewed by the courts, after the deportation
proceedings. When the evidence submitted by a respondent is conclusive of his
citizenship, the right to immediate review should also be recognized and the courts
should promptly enjoin the deportation proceedings.
If the respondent is a citizen and evidence thereof is satisfactory, there is no sense
nor justice in allowing the deportation proceedings to continue, granting him the
remedy only after the Board has finished its investigation of his undesirability. The
legal basis of prohibition is the absence of the jurisdictional fact, alienage.

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If the citizens right to his peace is to be protected, it must be protected preferably


through the medium of the courts because these are independent of other
branches of the government and only in their proceedings can we find guarantees
of impartiality and correctness, within human limitations, in the ascertainment of
the jurisdictional fact in issue, the respondents claim of citizenship. It must be also
protected on time, to prevent undue harassment at the hands of ill-meaning or
misinformed administrative officials.
A judicial determination should be granted only in cases when the courts
themselves believe that there is substantial evidence supporting the claim of
citizenship, so substantial that there are reasonable grounds for the belief that the
claim is correct.
In cases where the evidence is neither decisively conclusive in favor of the
deportees claim for Filipino citizenship, nor decisively conclusive against said
claim, the question of alienage or citizenship should first be decided in a judicial
proceeding, suspending the administrative proceedings in the meantime that the
alienage or citizenship is being finally determined in the courts.
The evidence presented is of such substantial nature as to afford belief that only
an impartial judicial investigation can evaluate it with fairness to the petitioner and
with justice to all concerned.
Co vs. The Deportation Board Fernando; July 29, 1977
FACTS
- Petitioners Gregorio Co and Herculano Co were born in Cagayan.
- Co Pengco, father of petitioners, was a Chinese merchant residing in Cagayan while
their mothers nationality was disputed.
- Upon petitioners parents death in China, a Special Prosecutor of the Deportation
Board filed charges against them alleging that as Chinese subjects residing in the
Philippines, who failed, neglected and refused to register as Chinese nationals with the
Bureau of Immigration, they violated the law.
- By representing themselves as Filipinos, they were able to enjoy rights and privileges
only given to Filipino citizens such as suffrage, ownership of real property, Herculanos
ownership of a coastwise vessel and Gregorios loan from the Rehabilitation Finance
Corporation.
- They filed a motion to dismiss with the Deportation Board on the ground that it lacked
jurisdiction since theyre Filipino citizens. DISMISSED
- Petitioners filed an action for prohibition and habeas corpus against the Board and
this was held in their favor on the ground of their being Filipinos.
- The then Judge de Veyra of the Manila CFI sustained his jurisdiction, granted the
relief sought, and restrained the Board from taking cognizance of the proceeding.
Hence this appeal by the Board.
ISSUES
1. WoN judicial intervention prior to the final decision of the Board was justified?
YES
2. WoN the facts show that petitioners were indeed Filipino citizens? YES
HELD
1. As held in Chua Hiong vs Deportation Board, when the evidence submittedis
conclusive of his citizenship, the right to immediate review should also be
recognized and the courts should promptly enjoin the deportation proceedings.
Judicial determination is allowable in cases when the courts themselves believe that

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there is substantial evidence supporting the claim of citizenship, so substantial that


there are reasonable grounds for the belief that the claim is correct. The remedy
should be allowed only in sound discretion of a competent court in a proper
proceeding.

Calacday vs Vivo reiterated the principle as to the applicability of the doctrine of


primary jurisdiction in deportation proceedings, precluding judicial intervention until
deportation proceedings are completed. But an exception to this was set forth in Chua
Hiong vs Deportation Board.
2. There was no substantial legal error in the test of evidence to justify such remedy
based on the evidence of their citizenship. Even the brief for appellant could not assert
that petitioners mother was an alien. Relying on the Philippine Bill of 1902, the LC
concluded that her illegitimate children were Filipino citizens (since her dad was
Chinese and her mom, Filipino).
Other evidence also proved their being Filipinos such as the recognition of such status
by several government agencies like the Commissioner of Immigration and the City
Fiscal of QC, their exercise of the right to suffrage and the birth certificates showing
they are Filipinos.
Simon v CHR supra
Paredes v CA supra
MANDAMUS
BLANCO, ET AL. V. BOARD OF MEDICAL EXAMINERS | Malcolm, J.
Facts

Blanco, et al. took and apparently passed the examination for a physicians
certificate.

The Board of Medical Examiners submitted the final results to the


Department Head for confirmation but the Secretary of the Interior held the
matter in abeyance, pending the outcome of an investigation conducted by
the Under-Secretary of the Interior.
o
The special investigator found that the questions had leaked out.
o
Following the recommendation of the Under-Secretary, the
Secretary of the Interior annulled the results of the examinations.

Blanco, et al. filed a complaint for mandamus for the court to order the
Secretary of the Interior to confirm the final results of the examinations.
Issue/Held
WoN the offical duty of the Secretary of Interior to confirm the results of the medical
examinations is ministerial in nature.NO. Such duty is DISCRETIONARY and there
was NO ABUSE in the exercise of such duty, thus, mandamus will not lie.
Ratio

Section 10 of Act No. 3111: The results of all examinations (medical),


including the average and grades obtained by each applicant, shall be
submitted for confirmation to the Department Head (the Secretary of the
Interior) and made known to the respective candidates within one month after
the date of the examination.

The writ of mandamus will NOT issue to control or review the exercise
of discretion of a public officer.
o
Where the law imposes upon a public officer the right and duty to
exercise judgment, in reference to any matter to which he is called
upon to act, it is his judgment that is to be exercised and not that of
the court.
o
If the law imposes a duty upon a public officer, and gives him the
right to decide how or when the duty shall be performed, such
duty is discretionary and not ministerial.
Under the Medical law, it is the discretionary duty of the Secretary of the
Interior to confirm or not to confirm the report of the medical examiners.
o
To hold that the Secretary of the Interior must in all cases confirm,
shutting his eyes to any irregularity, no matter how glaring, would
convert him into an automatic rubber stamp for imprinting the
requisite approval.
HOWEVER, mandamus may issue to correct abuse of discretion.
o
In this case, the record discloses that the Secretary of the Interior
did not exercise the power granted to him with manifest injustice, or
with gross abuse.

NG GIOC LIU V. SECRETARY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS


J. Reyes | March 31,
1950
Facts

Ng Gioc Liu, alias Vicente Uy, presented to the DFA a letter from the
Commissioner of Immigration, requesting that the Philippine Consulate at
Amoy, China be authorized to issue a returning resident visa to Mariano Uy
as an unemancipated minor son of Ng, the Commissioner being satisfied that
this minor was born in Manila in 1928, but that, having gone to China in 1930
to study and having stayed there since then, he has to have a visa to return
to the Philippines.

As the Commissioners request was not granted, Ng filed a petition for a writ
of mandamus to compel the Secretary of Foreign Affairs to authorize the
issuance of the visa in question.
Issue
WoN the giving of a visa is a ministerial act that may be compelled by mandamus. NO
Ratio

From the Immigration Act of 1940, a visa is not issued as a matter of course
to any one applying for it.

In the case of a non-immigrant, he must first establish satisfactorily his status


as such and the consular officer, on his part, has to satisfy himself that the
applicants entry into the Philippines would not be contrary to the public
safety. The matter obviously requires an investigation by the consular officer
issuing the visa.

Although the foreign service has been placed under the over-all direction and
supervision of the DFA, this does not necessarily mean that the Department
Secretary takes the place of the consular officers abroad in the matter of the
issuance of passport visas, for the Secretary cannot relieve those officers of
their responsibility under the law.

Reason of the law: the applicant for a visa is in a foreign country and the
Philippine consular officer there is naturally in a better position than the home

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office to determine through investigation conducted on the spot whether or


not the said applicant is qualified to enter the Philippines.
The determination of WoN an applicant for a visa has a non-immigrant status
and WoN his entry into this country would be contrary to public safety, is not a
simple ministerial function. It involves the exercise of discretion and cannot
therefore be controlled by mandamus.
The fact that the Commissioner of Immigration has made his own
investigation and is himself satisfied that the applicant is entitled to his claim
is immaterial. For the consular officers are not bound by the findings and
conclusions of the immigration office.

Policarpio vs. Phil. Veterans Board Reyes, JBL, J.|Aug 23, 1956
FACTS:
- Policarpio was the widow of a member of the Armed Forces killed in action.
- She applied, and was granted a monthly pension by the Philippine Veterans Board
(Board).
- The pension was stopped, however, in 1948 because the widow received a similar
pension from US Veterans Adminitration (USVA). However, the latter certified that
Policarpio had ceased receiving her pension from USVA since 1951.
- Thereafter, Policarpio applied for the resumption of her former pension from the
Board. The Secretary of the Board issued a memorandum that Policarpios pension
was resumed and ordered the preparation of treasury warrants in her favor.
- Initially, treasury warrants were delivered to Policarpio, but were later stopped for
the reason that the Board had not yet granted the restoration of her pension.
- Policarpio filed for a writ of mandamus to be issued to compel the Board to release
the warrants.
- The Board claimed that the preparation of the warrants was ordered by mistake,
because Policarpios petition had not yet been acted upon by the Board.
- The lower court decreed the issuance of the writ complained of.
ISSUE:
WON the lower court erred in issuing the writ of mandamus? Yes
RATIO:
The resumption of the pension had not yet been approved by the Veterans
Board. The memorandum od the Secretary an the preparation of the warrants
were obviously unauthorized, and the taking of such action procves nothing but
that the error or lack of authority was not discovered until later, as shown by the
subsequent withholding of the warrant.
It was improper to compel delivery of the warrants because the Board migt, in
the exercise of its discretion, refuse to restore Policarpios pension; and even if
its refusal should be erroneous, the court could not properly intervene until
Plocarpio should have exhausted her administrative remedies.
Mandamus does not lie to review or control the action or decision of a pension
board where the action or decision is one resting in the discretion of such board
or officer, or where it involves the construction of the law and the application of
the facts thereto.
Vda. de Tan v. Veterans Backpay Commission Reyes, J.B.L., J. | March 30, 1959
FACTS

Respondent Veterans Backpay Commission (Commission) is the government


agency vested with authority to implement the provisions of the Backpay Law
(R.A. 304 amended by R.A. 897).

Petitioner Maria Natividad vda. de Tan is the widow of the late Lt. Tan Chiat
Bee, a Chinese national and a bonafide member of the U.S.-Chinese
Volunteers in the Philippines.
o
The U.S.-Chinese Volunteers is duly recognized by the US Army
and forms part of the Philippine Army.
o
Lt. Tan died in the service and was duly recognized as a guerilla
veteran having rendered meritorious military services during the
Japanese occupation.
Vda. de Tan filed an application for backpay.
The Commission issued a resolution granting backpay to alien members. The
Adjutant of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) verified that Lt. Tan
has rendered service as a recognized guerilla.
o
The Chief of Finance Service of Camp Murphy computed the
backpay due to Lt. Tan. This was passed in audit by the Auditor
General.
However, the Commission revoked its previous stand and ruled that aliens
are not entitled to backpay. The Commission denied Vda. de Tans request.
Vda. de Tan filed a petition for mandamus seeking an order to compel the
Commission to (1) to declare deceased Lt. Tan entitled to backpay right
under the Backpay Law; and (2) to issue to her the corresponding backpay
certificate of indebtedness.
Lower Court granted the petition and ordered the Commission to issue the
backpay Lt. Tan was entitled to.
Commission appealed.

ISSUES & HELD


(1) WON mandamus is the proper remedy. YES.
(2) WON aliens are included within the purview of the Backpay Law. YES.
(3) WON Vda. de Tan should have first exhausted available administrative remedies by
appealing to the Office of the President. NO.
RATIONALE
Issue #1

The Commisison contends that mandamus will not lie to compel the exercise
of a discretionary function.

SC held that the Commissions discretion is limited to the facts of the case,
i.e. merely evaluating the evidence WON the claimant is a member of a
guerrilla force duly recognized by the US Army. The Commission does not
have the power to adjudicate rights after such facts are established.

Having been satisfied that Lt. Tan was an officer of a duly recognized guerrilla
outfit, certified to by the AFP, having served under the United States-Chinese
Volunteers, a guerrilla unit recognized by the US Army and forming part of the
Philippine Army, it becomes the ministerial duty of the respondent to give
due course to Vda. de Tans application.
Issue #2

RA Nos. 304 and 897 extend its benefits to members of guerrilla forces duly
recognized by the Army of the United States. There is no indication that its
operation should be limited to citizens of the Philippines only. All the law

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requires is that the guerrilla unit be duly recognized by the US Army.

Issue #3

Commission is in estoppel to invoke this rule as in its resolution it refused to


abide by the opinion of the Secretary of Justice 1. The Commission declared
that such opinion are only advisory in nature, which may either be accepted
or ignored and any aggrieved party has the court for recourse.

Vde. De Tan was led to conclude that only a final judicial ruling would be
accepted in her favor.

PROVINCE OF PANGASINAN v REPARATIONS COMMISSION Concepcion, J.


(1977)
FACTS:
The Province of Pangasinan applied with the Reparations Commission for
reparation of goods worth US$1.5 million to be used for its non-revenue projects
(equipment and machinery for road building, improvement of existing irrigation
systems, garbage collection).
The Reparations Commission, through the National Economic Council, forwarded
the application to the President for approval. In the revised schedule, the road
building equipment applied for by Pangasinan was not recommended as a nonrevenue producing project.
The reparation good and equipment arrived in Manila, and was released to
Pangasinan.
The Reparations Adviser, Atty Panfil Manguera, submitted copies of the Contract
of Transfer of Reparation Goods that cover the road-building equipment to the
Chairman of the Reparations Commission for his signature. This contract,
however, was not acted upon.
The Commission required the equipment to be held in the custody of the Highway
District Engineer awaiting the clearance of the Secretary of Finance, Auditor
General, Budget Commissioner and Office of the President.
Ultimately, the Reparations Commission ordered the deletion and removal from
the reparations goods all the inscriptions indicating the proprietary rights of
Pangasinan over the said goods.
The Court issued a temporary restraining order against the Commission from acts
of interference, use, control and disposition of roadbuilding equipment.
ISSUE:
Is mandamus the proper remedy to enforce contractual rights transferring the
reparations equipment and machinery to Pangasinan?
HELD/RULING:
NO. Mandamus is employed to compel the performance, when refused of a ministerial
duty, but it does not lie to require anyone to fulfil contractual obligations or to compel a
course of conduct.
In this case, it was an attempt for Pangasinan to settle contractual rights and
obligations and to regulate a course of conduct on the part of the Commission.
Therefore, mandamus is not the proper remedy.

Another essential element of mandamus is the plaintiffs clear legal right to the
thing demanded and the imperative duty of the defendant to perform the act
required.
The writ neither confers powers nor imposes duties. It is simply a command to
exercise a power already possessed and to perform a duty already imposed.
Here, it was not established by evidence that the Commission had the duty to
perform the acts asked for by Pangasinan.
Pangasinans basis of the complaint is that it is not liable to pay the procurement
costs because it was awarded the reparation goods in question, and that it is the
duty of the Commission to execute in their favour the formal documents of
transfer.
However, there was a change that was cognizable to Pangasinan that the
representation that the equipment is for a non-revenue producing project has
been changed to a revenue-proceeding one. Therefore, it is not incumbent upon
the Commission to execute the formal transfer documents until payment of
procurement costs.
Because Pangasinan has NOT yet paid the said costs (in short, they have not
complied with their obligations), the Commission does not have a ministerial duty
to perform and therefore, mandamus does not lie.

MERALCO SECURITIES CORP VS SAVELLANO Oct 23, 1982 | Teehankee, J.


Facts:

Maniago submitted to CIR confidential denunciation against the Meralco


Securities Corporation for tax evasion2

CIR caused the investigation of the denunciation after which he found and
held that no deficiency corporate income tax was due from the Meralco under
the law then prevailing (section 24[a] of the National Internal Revenue Code) 3

Commissioner informed Maniago of his findings and denied Maniago's claim


for informer's reward on a non-existent deficiency sustained by the
Secretary of Finance

Maniago filed a petition for mandamus against the Commissioner of Internal


Revenue and the Meralco to compel the Commissioner to impose the alleged
deficiency tax assessment on Meralco and to award to him the corresponding
informer's reward under the provisions of R.A. 2338

Commissioner filed a motion to dismiss, arguing that:


since in matters of issuance and non-issuance of assessments, he
is clothed under the National Internal Revenue Code and existing
rules and regulations with discretionary power in evaluating the
facts of a case.
since mandamus cannot compel the performance of a discretionary
power, he cannot be compelled to impose the alleged tax deficiency
assessment against the Meralco

for having paid income tax only on 25% of the dividends it received from the Manila Electric Co. for the
years 1962-1966, thereby allegedly shortchanging the government of income tax due from 75% of the
said dividends

Opinion No. 213, series of 1956, of the Secretary of Justice: The Back pay Law recognizes the rights to
the backpay of members of "guerrilla forces duly recognized by the Army of the United States, among
others. A perusal of its provisions reveals nothing which may be construed to mean that only Filipino
citizens are entitled to back pay

"in the case of dividends received by a domestic or foreign resident corporation liable to (corporate
income) tax under this Chapter . . . only twenty-five per centum thereof shall be returnable for the
purposes of the tax imposed under this section"

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mandamus may not he against him for that would be tantamount to


a usurpation of executive powers, since the Office of the
Commissioner of Internal Revenue is undeniably under the control
of the executive department
CFI: granted the writ prayed for and ordered the Commissioner of Internal
Revenue to assess and collect from the Meralco the deficiency corporate
income tax plus interests and surcharges due thereon and to pay 25%
thereof to Maniago as informer's reward
Commissioner prayed that the decision of CFI be reconsidered for the
issuance or non-issuance of a deficiency assessment is a prerogative of the
Commissioner of Internal Revenue not reviewable by mandamus

Issue: WON mandamus is applicable in this case


Held: NO

It is a well-recognized rule that mandamus only lies to enforce the


performance of a ministerial act or duty and not to control the performance of
a discretionary power

Purely administrative and discretionary functions may not be interfered with


by the courts

Discretion means the power or right conferred upon the office by law of acting
officially under certain circumstances according to the dictates of his own
judgment and conscience and not controlled by the judgment or conscience
of others

Mandamus may not be resorted to so as to interfere with the manner in which


the discretion shall be exercised or to influence or coerce a particular
determination.

Moreover, since the office of the Commissioner of Internal Revenue is


charged with the administration of revenue laws, which is the primary
responsibility of the executive branch of the government, mandamus may not
be against the Commissioner to compel him to impose a tax assessment not
found by him to be due or proper for that would be tantamount to a
usurpation of executive functions

Such discretionary power vested in the proper executive official, in the


absence of arbitrariness or grave abuse so as to go beyond the statutory
authority, is not subject to the contrary judgment or control of others
Discretion, when applied to public functionaries, means a power or
right conferred upon them by law of acting officially, under certain
circumstances, uncontrolled by the judgment or consciences of
other

A purely ministerial act or duty in contradiction to a discretional act


is one which an officer or tribunal performs in a given state of facts,
in a prescribed manner, in obedience to the mandate of a legal
authority, without regard to or the exercise of his own judgment
upon the propriety or impropriety of the act done
If the law imposes a duty upon a public officer and gives him the
right to decide how or when the duty shall be performed, such duty
is discretionary and not ministerial
The duty is ministerial only when the discharge of the same
requires neither the exercise of official discretion or judgment

Thus, after the Commissioner who is specifically charged by law with the task
of enforcing and implementing the tax laws and the collection of taxes had
after a mature and thorough study rendered his decision or ruling that no tax
is due or collectible, and his decision is sustained by the Secretary of Finance
(whose act is that of the President unless reprobated), such decision or ruling
is a valid exercise of discretion in the performance of official duty and cannot
be controlled much less reversed by mandamus.
A contrary view, whereby any stranger or informer would be allowed to usurp
and control the official functions of the Commissioner of Internal Revenue
would create disorder and confusion, if not chaos and total disruption of the
operations of the government.
Considering then that respondent judge may not order by mandamus the
Commissioner to issue the assessment against Meralco when no such
assessment has been found to be due, no deficiency taxes may therefore be
assessed and collected against the said corporation Since no taxes are to
be collected, no informer's reward is due to private respondents as the
informer's heirs4

CRUZ vs GANGAN
Facts:
On January 15, 1999, Cruz went to the Regional Office of TESDA in Taguig, Metro
Manila for consultation with the regional director. After the meeting, petitioner went
back to her official station in Caloocan City, where she was the then Camanava
district director of the TESDA, by boarding the LRT from Sen. Gil Puyat Avenue to
Monumento.
On board the LRT, her handbag was slashed and its contents stolen by an
unidentified person. Among the items taken from her were her wallet and the
government-issued cellular phone, which is the subject of the instant case. That
same day, she reported the incident to police authorities who immediately
conducted an investigation. However, all efforts to locate the thief and to recover
the phone proved futile.
Three days after, petitioner reported the theft to the regional director of TESDANCR. She did so through a Memorandum, in which she requested relief from
accountability of the subject property. In a 1st Indorsement dated January 19,
1999, the regional director, in turn, indorsed the request to the resident auditor.
Under a 2nd Indorsement dated February 26, 1999, the resident auditor denied
the request of petitioner on the ground that the latter lacked the diligence required
in the custody of government properties. Thus, petitioner Cruz was ordered to
pay the purchase value of the cell phone (P3,988) and that of its case (P250), a
total of P4,238.The auditors action was sustained by the director of the National
Government Audit Office II.
The matter was elevated to the Commission on Audit. On appeal, the COA found
no sufficient justification to grant the request for relief from accountability.
Cruz then filed a petition for certiorari under Rule 645 before the Supreme Court.
Issue/s: WON Cruz was negligent in the care of the government-issued cellular phone.
Whether she should be held accountable for its loss? No.
4

Respondent died during the pendency of the case so he was substituted by the heirs

Review of Judgments and Final Orders or Resolutions of the COMELEC and the COA.

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Ratio:
Negligence is want of care required by the circumstances.Petitioners act of riding
the LRT cannot per se be denounced as a negligent act.
Cruz boarded the LRT to be able to arrive in Caloocan in time for her 3:00 p.m.
meeting. Any prudent or rational person under similar circumstances can
reasonably be expected to do the same. Possession of a cellular phone would
not and should not hinder one from boarding an LRT coach as petitioner did. After
all, whether she took a bus or a jeepney, the risk of theft would have also been
present. Because of her relatively low position and pay, she was not expected to
have her own vehicle or to ride a taxicab. Neither had the government granted
her the use of any vehicle.
The Rules provide that property for official use and purpose shall be utilized with
the diligence of a good father of a family. Extra-ordinary measures are not called
for in taking care of a cellular phone while in transit. Placing it in a bag away from
covetous eyes and holding on to that bag, as done by petitioner, is ordinarily
sufficient care of a cellular phone while travelling on board the LRT. The records
do not show any specific act of negligence on her part.
Findings of fact of an administrative agency must be respected so long as they
are supported by substantial evidence. But lacking support, the factual finding of
the COA on the existence of negligence cannot stand on its own and is therefore
not binding on the Court.
PRC vs. DE GUZMAN | Tinga, J. (21 June 2004)
FACTS
1. PRC released the names of respondents, all graduates of the Fatima College of
Medicine, as successful examinees in the Physician Licensure Exams.
2.

Shortly thereafter, the Board observed that the grades of the 79 successful
examinees from Fatima College in the two (2) most difficult subjects in the medical
licensure exam, Bio-Chem and Ob-Gyne, were unusually and exceptionally high.

3.

Board issued Resolution No. 19, withholding the registration as physicians of


all the examinees from the Fatima College of Medicine. PRC asked the NBI to
investigate. It also requested Fr. Bienvenido F. Nebres, S.J., an expert
mathematician and authority in statistics, to conduct a statistical analysis of the
results.

4.

Fr. Nebres reported that that the scores of Fatima College examinees were not
only incredibly high but unusually clustered close to each other. He concluded
that there must be some unusual reason creating the clustering of scores in the
two (2) subjects. It must be a cause strong enough to eliminate the normal
variations that one should expect from the examinees [of Fatima College] in terms
of talent, effort, energy, etc. NBI concluded that the Fatima examinees
gained early access to the test questions.

5.

Respondents filed a special civil action for mandamus, with prayer for preliminary
mandatory injunction with the RTC.

6.

Meanwhile, the Board issued Resolution No. 26, dated 21 July 1993, charging
respondents with immorality, dishonest conduct, fraud, and deceit in connection

with the Bio-Chem and Ob-Gyne examinations. It recommended that the test
results of the Fatima examinees be nullified.
7.

RTC granted the preliminary mandatory injunction. It ordered the petitioners to


administer the physicians oath to Arlene V. De Guzman et al., and enter their
names in the rolls of the PRC.

8.

Petitioner filed a special civil action for certiorari with the CA to set aside the
mandatory injunctive writ. CA affirmed trial court.

ISSUE: WON the CA committed a reversible error of law in sustaining the


judgment of the TC that respondents are entitled to a writ of mandamus?
HELD/RATIO
YES. Mandamus is a command issuing from a court of competent jurisdiction, in
the name of the state or the sovereign, directed to some inferior court, tribunal, or
board, or to some corporation or person requiring the performance of a particular
duty therein specified, which duty results from the official station of the party to whom
the writ is directed, or from operation of law. Section 3 of Rule 65 of the 1997 Rules
of Civil Procedure outlines two situations when a writ of mandamus may issue, when
any tribunal, corporation, board, officer or person unlawfully:
1. Neglects the performance of an act which the law specifically enjoins as a duty
resulting from an office, trust, or station; or
2. Excludes another from the use and enjoyment of a right or office to which the
other is entitled.
On the existence of a duty of the Board of Medicine to issue Certificates of
Registration as Physicians under R.A. No. 2382
For mandamus to prosper, there must be a showing that the officer, board, or
official concerned, has a clear legal duty, not involving discretion. Moreover,
there must be statutory authority for the performance of the act, and the performance
of the duty has been refused.
To determine whether petitioners had the ministerial obligation to administer the
Hippocratic Oath to respondents and register them as physicians, recourse must be
had to the entirety of Medical Act of 1959.
A careful reading of Section 20 of the Medical Act of 1959 discloses that the law
uses the word shall with respect to the issuance of certificates of registration. In
statutory construction the term shall is a word of command. It is given imperative
meaning. Thus, when an examinee satisfies the requirements for the grant of his
physicians license, the Board is obliged to administer to him his oath and
register him as a physician.
Section 8 of RA 2382 prescribes, among others, that a person who aspires to
practice medicine in the Philippines, must have satisfactorily passed the
corresponding Board Examination. Section 22, in turn, provides that the oath may only
be administered to physicians who qualified in the examinations. The operative word
here is satisfactorily, defined as sufficient to meet a condition or obligation or
capable of dispelling doubt or ignorance. Gleaned from Board Resolution No. 26, the
licensing authority apparently did not find that the respondents satisfactorily passed
the licensure examinations.
Until the moral and mental fitness of the respondents could be ascertained, the
Board has discretion to hold in abeyance the administration of the Hippocratic Oath

Jessa, Candice, Jabie, Cels,

Joni, Rai, Aldous, Pat, Russ, Mark, Celeni, Ros

and the issuance of the certificates to them. The writ of mandamus does not lie to
compel performance of an act which is not duly authorized.
On the right of the respondents to be registered as physicians
The function of mandamus is not to establish a right but to enforce one that has
been established by law. If no legal right has been violated, there can be no
application of a legal remedy, and the writ of mandamus is a legal remedy for a legal
right. There must be a well-defined, clear and certain legal right to the thing demanded.
It is long established rule that a license to practice medicine is a privilege or franchise
granted by the government.
It is the constitutional right of every citizen to select a profession or course of
study subject to a fair, reasonable, and equitable admission and academic
requirements. But like all rights and freedoms guaranteed by the Charter, their exercise
may be so regulated pursuant to the police power of the State. This regulation takes
particular pertinence in the field of medicine, to protect the public from the potentially
deadly effects of incompetence and ignorance among those who would practice
medicine.
It must be stressed, nevertheless, that the power to regulate the exercise of a
profession or pursuit of an occupation cannot be exercised by the State or its agents in
an arbitrary, despotic, or oppressive manner. A political body that regulates the
exercise of a particular privilege has the authority to both forbid and grant such
privilege in accordance with certain conditions.
Privilege is distinguishable from a matter of right, which may be demanded if
denied. Thus, without a definite showing that the requirements and conditions have
been satisfactorily met, the courts may not grant the writ of mandamus to secure said
privilege without thwarting the legislative will.
On the ripeness of the Petition for Mandamus
Section 26 of the Medical Act of 1959 provides for the administrative and judicial
remedies that respondents herein can avail to question Resolution No. 26 of the Board
of Medicine, namely:
(a) appeal the unfavorable judgment to the PRC;
(b) should the PRC ruling still be unfavorable, to elevate the matter on appeal to
the Office of the President; and
(c) should they still be unsatisfied, to ask for a review of the case or to bring the
case to court via a special civil action of certiorari.
Thus, as a rule, mandamus will not lie when administrative remedies are still
available. However, the doctrine of exhaustion of administrative remedies does
NOT apply where, as in this case, a pure question of law is raised.
DECLARATORY RELIEF
Azajar vs. Ardales | Padilla
FACTS

Sometime in December 1950, petitioner Maria P. De Azajar (Azajar) applied for


the purchase of a parcel of land belonging to the public domain located in the
Province of Albay.

An opposition to the application was filed by Francisco Ardales (Ardales) on


the ground that the applicant, being a Chinese citizen, is not entitled to acquire
lands of the public domain.

Thus, Azajar filed a complaint with the CFI of Albay seeking a declaratory

judgment or relief because the opposition to her application raises uncertainty or


insecurity as to her citizenship which is prejudicial to her interest and, unless it be
judicially determined, the Bureau of Lands would likely deny her sales application.
After hearing, the court rendered judgment holding that Azajar is a Chinese
citizen and as such is not entitled to acquire lands of the public domain.
Azajar appealed and the Solicitor General filed a motion to dismiss on the
ground that an action for declaratory relief is not the proper proceedings for
the purpose of securing a judicial declaration of Filipino citizenship and,
thus, the trial court was without authority or jurisdiction to decide it on the merits
except to dismiss it.
In Azajars pleading objecting to the motion to dismiss, she moved that the appeal
be forwarded to the SC as it involved purely questions of law.
The Solicitor General objected to the motion but the CA ruled that as the Solicitor
General raises the question of jurisdiction of the trial court to decide the case on
the merits and there being practically no controversy over the facts on which the
appellant's claim is based, it certified the appeal to this Court.

ISSUES/HELD

Is a petition for declaratory relief the proper remedy of Azajar? NO.


RATIONALE

Azajar is not interested under a deed, will, contract or other written instrument; nor
are her rights affected by a statute or ordinance and so her grievance against
Ardales who objected to her sales application for a parcel of land of the public
domain has not brought her under and within the scope of section 1 of Rule 66 6.

A sales application filed with the Bureau of Lands must go through the different
stages as prescribed by law until the Director of Lands, the officer clothed with the
authority to alienate lands belonging to the public domain, renders his decision.

For that reason, until after all these administrative remedies shall have been
exhausted, no court may compel the Director of Lands or the Secretary of
Agriculture and Natural Resources on appeal to decide one way or another
any sales application as that is vested exclusively in them.

Citizenship cannot, therefore, be determined in a complaint for declaratory


judgment or relief, as it is not the proper remedy or proceedings.

If she is a Filipino citizen as she claims, she should go ahead with the
administrative proceedings in the Bureau of Lands and submit the evidence
to prove her citizenship.

The appellant may resort to the courts, if the exercise of her rights as citizen
be prevented or denied, to compel the officer, who prevented or denied her the
exercise of her rights as a Filipino citizen, to allow her to exercise such rights.

In this case, it is not the jurisdiction of the Court below that is involved but
the availability of the remedy sought on the basis of the averments in the
complaint.
DE BORJA v VILLADOLID | Torres | 1949
6

Section 1, Rule 66. Any person interested under a deed, will, contract or other written instrument, or
whose rights are affected by a statute or ordinance may bring an action to determine any question of
construction or validity arising under the instrument or statute and for a declaration of his rights or duties
thereunder

Joni, Rai, Aldous, Pat, Russ, Mark, Celeni, Ros

FACTS:
De Borja is a licensed fish peddler and is the owner of 2 motorboats. These boats
are used by him solely and exclusively in connection with his business of buying
fish for the purpose of selling said fish in Manila
Villadolid, Director of the Bureau of Fisheries, required de Borja to obtain a
commercial fishing boat license
De Borja refused on the ground that he is not required under the law to procure
such license since he is not operating his motorboats for the purpose of catching
fish
In view of De Borjas insistent refusal, Villadolid forwarded the case to the Office of
the City Fiscal for appropriate action
Upon learning this, De Borja filed with the CFI a complaint for declaratory relief
praying the court to issue a declaratory judgment "declaring that he is not required
by law to secure a commercial fishing boat license," for the operation of his
motorboats engaged in the transportation of fish
CFI DISMISSED the complaint for lack of merit
ISSUE: WoN the complaint for declaratory relief be granted
DECISION: NO.
Sec.2 of Rule 66 of the ROC provides that the action for declaratory relief must be
brought BEFORE THERE HAS BEEN A BREACH of a contract or statute the
construction of which is sought
The general purpose of a declaratory judgment is to provide for adjudication of
the legal rights, duties, or status of the respective parties
IN THIS CASE, there is nothing left for the courts to adjudicate or construe
regarding the legal rights, duties and status of De Borja (if he is prosecuted and
found criminally liable, then the punishment prescribed by law will be imposed
upon him; otherwise the charge will be dismissed)
If De Borja is sustained, he would have the courts prejudge the impending criminal
actions against him, without necessarily terminating the same
IT MIGHT BE ARGUED that no criminal action has as yet been filed. HOWEVER,
the law does not require that there shall be an actual pending case. It is
sufficient that there is a breach of the law to bar a complaint for declaratory
judgment
NATIONAL DENTAL SUPPLY CO. vs. MEER | En Banc (1951) | Bautista-Angelo, J.
FACTS
- Defendant Meer is the Collector of Internal Revenue.
- This is an action for declaratory relief to obtain a ruling on whether sales of dental
gold or gold alloys and other metals used for dental purposes come within the purview
of theNational Internal Revenue Code(Art. 184).
- Defendant filed a motion to dismiss on the ground (1) that plaintiff has no cause of
action for declaratory judgment.
- RTC dismissed the case.
- Plaintiff contends that it can do so under section 1, Rule 66, of the Rules of Court,
which contains no prohibition to a taxpayer to file an action for declaratory relief to test
the legality of any tax
- Defendant contends that the failure to incorporate in Rule 66 the proviso added by
Commonwealth Act No. 55 to section 1, of Act No. 3736, does not imply its repeal and,
therefore, it still stands and applies to the plaintiff.

Jessa, Candice, Jabie, Cels,

- The original law on declaratory relief is Act No. 3736, which went into effect in 1930
provides:
"SECTION 1. Construction. - Any person interested under a deed, contract or other
written instrument, or whose rights are affected by a statute, may bring an action in
Court of First Instance to determine any question of construction or validity arising
under the instrument or statute and for a declaration of his rights or duties thereunder."
- In 1936, Congress approved Commonwealth Act No. 55 adding the following
proviso:
". . . Provided, however, That the provisions of this Act, shall not apply to cases where
a taxpayer questions his liability for the payment of any tax, duty, or charge collectible
under any law administered by the Bureau of Customs or the Bureau of Internal
Revenue."
- SC promulgated: Rule 66, section 1, which reproduces the declaratory relief
provisions contained in Act No. 3736, eliminates the proviso introduced by
Commonwealth Act No. 55.
- Chief Justice Moran who intervened in the preparation of said Rules of Court, has
the following to say:
The proviso added by Commonwealth Act No. 55 is not incorporated in the
Rule 66 in order to make it discretionary upon the courts to apply or not to apply
the remedy in such cases. Of course, where the tax is already due and collectible,
the taxpayer cannot prevent collection by a declaratory action, but he should pay the
tax and sue for its recovery within the period limited by law. But, where the tax is not
yet due, there can be no valid reason why a tax-payer cannot by declaratory relief test
its validity.
ISSUE/S & HELD:
whether or not plaintiff can bring the present action for declaratory relief. NO.
RATIONALE
- The failure to incorporate the above proviso in section 1, rule 66, is not due to an
intention to repeal it but rather to the desire to leave its application to the sound
discretion of the court.
- And even if it be desired to incorporate it in rule 66, it is doubted if it could be done
under the rule-making power of the Supreme Court considering that the nature of said
proviso is substantive and not adjective, its purpose being to lay down a policy as to
the right of a taxpayer to contest the collection of taxes.
- With the adoption of said proviso, our law-making body has asserted its policy: not to
grant such a right to the taxpayer.
"The Government may fix the conditions upon which it will consent to litigate
the validity of its original taxes. . . .."
- "The power of taxation being legislative, all the incidents are within the control of the
Legislature".
- In other words, the proviso contained in Commonwealth Act No. 55 is still in full
force and effect and bars the plaintiff from filing the present action.

Jessa, Candice, Jabie, Cels,

Joni, Rai, Aldous, Pat, Russ, Mark, Celeni, Ros

- Moreover, Section 306 of the National Internal Revenue Code, lays down the
procedure to be followed in those cases wherein a taxpayer entertains some doubt
about the correctness of a tax sought to be collected:
The tax should first be paid and the taxpayer should sue for its recovery
afterwards.
- The purpose of the law obviously is to prevent delay in the collection of taxes
upon which the Government depends for its very existence. To allow a taxpayer to
first secure a ruling as regards the validity of the tax before paying it would be to defeat
this purpose, and to prevent this result the rule regarding declaratory relief was
declared inapplicable to cases involving collection of taxes.
MIRANDO vs. WELLINGTON TY & BROS, INC. | Guerrero, J. (16 February 1978)
FACTS
1. Shortly after the liberation of Manila from the Japanese Army, petitioners occupied
and lived in the premises of Arellano University at Legarda St., Manila, from
1945 to 1950. To solve the problem posed by the squatters to public health and
sanitation in general and to meet the needs of the University for its premises in
particular, Mayor de la Fuente of Manila secured the approval of Mayor Diaz of
QC to relocate the squatters in certain lots adjoining Broadway St., Q.C.
2.

These lots were formerly owned by a Japanese. Because he was an enemy alien,
the Phil. Alien Property Custodian and later its successor, the Phil. Board of
Liquidators, took possession of these lots. During their occupancy of the lots in
question, petitioners constructed their respective houses thereon and were
charged nominal rentals by the respondent Phil. Board of Liquidators. They also
filed their respective applications with the Board through the Office of the
President for the sale of the lots to them.

3.

Sometime in 1953, the Phil. Board of Liquidators with the approval of the
President of the Philippines, bartered the two parcels of land in dispute with
another piece of land owned by the late Carmen Planas.

4.

08 December 1964: The administrator of the estate of the late Carmen Planas
sold the lots in question to private respondents, Wellington Ty & Bros., Inc. The
case was registered and TCT No. 87901 was issued by the Register of Deeds of
Q.C. in the name of private respondents. Soon thereafter, the private respondents
made demands upon the petitioners to vacate and surrender the possession of
the premises. Petitioners refused, claiming that they had preferential rights to the
property. Private respondents reacted by filing an ejectment proceeding in the
City Court of Q.C.

5.

04 September 1968: Petitioners-appellants filed a petition entitled Declaratory


Relief for Cancellation of Title and/or Reconveyance with Preliminary Injunction
before the CFI Rizal, Branch XVII, claiming inter alia:
a. that they are the bona fide occupants of the lots in question, having,
constructed thereon their respective resident substantial houses; and
b. that through the fraud and misrepresentation of the Respondent-appellee
Wellington Ty & Bros, Inc., in collusion with the Phil. Board of Liquidators,
they were deprived of their preferential right to purchase said lots from the
latter.

The petition sought the cancellation of the title of Wellington Ty & Bros., Inc.,
the reconveyance of the disputed lots in their favor, and the issuance of a writ of
preliminary injunction against further proceedings in the ejectment case filed by
Respondent-appellee Wellington Ty & Bros, Inc. against the Petitionersappellants.
6.

After their motion to dismiss was denied, respondent appellee Wellington Ty &
Bros., Inc. filed its Answer to the petition, claiming as a special and affirmative
defense the indefensibility of their title under the Land Registration Act, being
purchasers for value and in good faith. Further, they reiterated the grounds of
their motion to dismiss, among them that the present action is not the proper
remedy.

7.

Without going to trial, the case was submitted for decision, the pertinent portion of
which reads:
The petitioners do not cite the provision of the law that prohibits
the Alien Property Custodian from entering into a barter agreement with
Carmen Planas. On the contrary, the Alien Property Custodian as the
administrator of the alien property in question, with the consent of the
Office of the President as in the instant case, has the full authority to
enter into such a barter agreement with Carmen Planas. The fact that
the present petitioners were relocated by the then City Mayor of
Manila, Mayor Manuel dela Fuente with the consent of the City Mayor of
Q.C., to the land in question, which was never owned by either City,
did not confer on the petitioners any right over it.

8.

The MFR was denied. Petitioners-appellants appealed to the CA claiming that the
decision was contrary to law, jurisprudence, and the government policy of land for
the landless. CA found that controversy hangers on WON respondent Phil. Board
of Liquidators had a right to dispose alien-owned property under its administration
and control by sale, barter or otherwise, and WON Petitioners-appellants'
occupancy of the lots in question prior to their sale to private respondent conferred
upon them a preferential right to purchase the same, and to that end, WON they
are entitled to the declaratory relief prayed for. Being purely questions of law,
elevated to SC.

ISSUE/S
1. WON petitioner-appellants have the preferential right
2. WON petitioner-appellants action for declaratory relief is proper
HELD/RATIO
1. NO. In the absence of proof of defect in the acquisition by Carmen Planas of, or
proof of infirmity in her title to, the lots occupied by Petitioners-appellants, the
validity of the contract of sale executed between the administrator of her estate
and the Respondent-appellee Wellington Ty & Bros., Inc. cannot be questioned.
Pursuing further the contention of the Petitioners-appellants that they had the
preferential right to buy the lots they occupied, the SC looked into the
provisions of the law then in effect, R. A. 477, Sec. 1, effective 09 June 1950,
and not R. A. 33487. The fact that the applications of the Petitioners-appellants to
7

Section 1. Section one of Republic Act Numbered Four hundred seventy-seven, as amended by
Republic Act Numbered Nineteen hundred seventy, is further amended to read as follows:

Jessa, Candice, Jabie, Cels,

Joni, Rai, Aldous, Pat, Russ, Mark, Celeni, Ros

buy these parcels of land from the national government, thru the Board of
Liquidators, had not been given due course by the latter no doubt shows that, as
authorized under the above provision of law, the national government reserved
these lots for its own use with no intention to subdivide them into
convenient-sized lots to be awarded to bona fide occupants. That Petitionersappellants paid nominal fees for the use of the lots is of little consequence, in the
absence of positive proof that the fees were in consideration of any claim of
priority rights. In fact, unrebutted testimony was presented appellants were
considered squatters, not as bona fide occupants by the Board of Liquidators to
the effect that petitioners occupants thereon. Their use and occupation of the land
was merely tolerated by the national government, and could not have vested in
them any claim, right, or adverse interest in such property.
2.

NO. Declaratory relief is an action which any person interested under a deed
will, contract, or other written instrument, or whose rights are affected by a
statute, executive order or regulation, or ordinance, may, before breach or
violation thereof, bring to determine any question of construction or validity
arising under the instrument or statute and for a declaration of his rights or
duties thereunder.
Petitioners-appellants brought this action with a claim that they were deprived
of their preferential right to buy the disputed lots by virtue of a contract of sale
involving said lots executed between the administrator of the estate of the late
Carmen Planas and respondent Wellington Ty & Bros., Inc. But it is evident from
the records that from the date of their relocation to the disputed lots in 1950 to the
date of the filing of this petition for declaratory relief, at no time did the
Petitioners-appellants acquire any interest whatsoever in the parcels of land
subject of the aforementioned contract of sale. They enjoyed no rights which
were violated, or at the least, affected by the exchange of properties between the
national government and the late Carmen Planas, and eventually, by the above
contract of sale between the administrator of the estate of Carmen Planas and the
Respondent-appellee Wellington Ty & Bros., Inc.
The authorities are unanimous that in order that an action for declaratory
relief may be entertained, it must be predicated on the following requisite facts
or conditions:
a. there must be a justifiable controversy;
b. the controversy must be between persons whose interests are adverse;
c. the party seeking declaratory relief must have a legal interest in the
controversy; and

"Sec. 1. All lands which have been or may hereafter be transferred to the Republic of the Philippines in
accordance with the Philippine Property Act of nineteen hundred and forty-six (Act of Congress of the
United States of July three, nineteen hundred and forty-six), and Republic Act Numbered Eight and all the
public lands and improvements thereon transferred from the Bureau of Lands to the National Abaca and
other Fibers Corporation under the provisions of Executive Order Numbered Twenty-nine, dated October
twenty-five, nineteen hundred and forty-six and Executive Order Numbered Ninety-nine, dated October
twenty-two, nineteen hundred and forty-seven, shall be subdivided by the National Abaca and other
Fibers Corporation into convenient-sized lots, except such portions thereof as the President of the
Philippines may reserve or transfer title thereto for the use of the National or local governments, or for the
use of corporations or entities owned or controlled by the Government. Subdivision lots primarily intended
for, or devoted to, agricultural purposes shall not exceed an area of five hectares for coconut lands, ten
hectares for improved abaca lands, and twelve hectares for unimproved lands; urban homesite or
residential lots shall not exceed an area of one thousand square meters: Provided, That any provision of
law to the contrary notwithstanding, the Department of General Services shall determine the minimum
size of said urban homesites or residential lots and shall allot said lots to the actual occupants thereof at
the time of the approval of this Act."

d. the issue involved must be ripe for judicial determination.


All these requisite facts are not present; the complaint must, therefore, fail
for lack of sufficient cause of action.
HABEAS CORPUS
MEJOFF vs DIRECTOR OF PRISONS
Boris Mejoff is an alien of Russian descent who was brought to this country from
Shanghai as a secret operative by the Japanese forces during the latter's regime
in these islands. Upon liberation he was arrested as a Japanese spy by the U. S.
Army. and was handed to the Commonwealth Government for disposition in
accordance with Commonwealth Act No. 682. The People's Court ordered his
release.
The deportation board, however, found that Mejoff had no travel documents. After
the corresponding investigation, the Board of Commissioners of Immigration on
April 5, 1948 declared that Mejoff had entered the Philippines illegally in 1944
without inspection and admission by the immigration officials at a designated port
of entry and, therefore, it ordered that he be deported on the first available
transportation to Russia.
The petitioner was taken to custody on March 18, 1948. In May, 1948, he was
transferred to the Cebu Provincial Jail together with three other Russians to await
the arrival of some Russian vessels. In July and in August of that year two boats
of Russian nationality called at the Cebu Port but their masters refused to take
petitioner and his companions alleging lack of authority to do so.
In October, 1948, after repeated failures to ship Mejoff abroad, the authorities
transferred him to Bilibid Prison at Muntinglupa where he has been confined up to
the time of filing of thie petition for habeas corpus.
Issue: WON a writ of habeas corpus should be issued? No.
Ratio:
Temporary detention is a necessary step in the process of exclusion or expulsion
of undesirable aliens and that pending arrangements for deportation, the
Government has the right to hold the undesirable alien under confinement for a
reasonable length of time. The meaning of "reasonable time" depends upon the
circumstances, specially the difficulties of obtaining a passport, the availability of
transportation, the diplomatic arrangements concerned, and the efforts displayed
to send the deportee away. Under established precedents, too long a detention
may justify the issuance of a writ of habeas corpus.
The record fails to show how long Mejoff has been under confinement since the
last time he was apprehended. Neither does Mejoff indicate neglected
opportunities to send him abroad. Unless it can be shown that the deportee is
being indefinitely imprisoned under the pretense of awaiting a chance for
deportation, or unless the Government admits that itcan not deport him, or unless
the detainee is being held for too long a period, the Court will not interfere.
In Borovsky vs Commissioner of Immigration, a delay of twenty months in carrying
out an order of deportation has not been held sufficient to justify the issuance of
the writ of habeas corpus. In view of the fact that Mejoff was arrested on March
19488 (16 months from the date of filing), the petition was demoed by the Court.
8

The SC was contradicting itself here. See preceding paragraph

Joni, Rai, Aldous, Pat, Russ, Mark, Celeni, Ros

Dissenting: Perfecto, J. - To continue keeping petitioner under confinement is a


thing that shocks conscience. Under the circumstances, petitioner is entitled to be
released from confinement. He has not been convicted for any offense for which
he may be imprisoned. Government's inability to deport him no pretext to keep
him imprisoned for an indefinite length of time. The constitutional guarantee that
no person shall be deprived of liberty without due process of law has been
intended to protect all inhabitants or residents who may happen to be under the
shadows of Philippine flag.

Co vs. Deportation Board supra


Lucien Tran Van Nghia vs Liwag supra
INJUNCTION AS A PROVISIONAL REMEDY
COLL. OF INTERNAL REVENUE vs. REYES AND CTA Felix, J. | January 31, 1957
FACTS:
The Collector of Internal Revenue demanded from Aurelio P. Reyes (Reyes)
payment of his alleged deficiency income taxes with the suggestion that the
aforesaid tax liabilities be paid either to the Bureau of Internal Revenue or the
City Treasurer of Manila.
Together with said letter of assessment, Reyes received a warrant of distraint
and levy on his properties in the event that he should fail to pay
Since the Treasurer was instructed by the CIR to execute the warrant of
distraint and levy on the amount demanded if the same is not settled, Reyes
filed with the CTA a petition for review of the Collector's assessment of his
alleged deficiency income tax liabilities. This was followed by an urgent petition
to restrain the CIR from executing the warrant of distraint and levy on the
grounds that
o
The right to collect by summary proceedings the tax demanded
had already prescribed pursuant to section 51 (d) of the
National Internal Revenue Code, as his income tax had been
filed more than three years ago
o
That a distraint and levy on his properties would work injustice
to him.
o
That the requisite of RA No. 1125 for the filing of a bond or
deposit before a writ of distraint and levy may be suspended is
not applicable in this case.
The CIR opposed said petition on the ground that the CTA has no authority to
restrain him from executing the warrant of distraint and levy.
The CTA ordered the CIR to desist from collecting by administrative method the
taxes allegedly due from Reyes pending the outcome of his appeal.
NOTE: The warrant of distraint and levy was issued only 3 years, 5 months and
16 days after Reyes has filed his returns for the tax year 1950.
ISSUE:
- WON the CTA can restrain the CIR from enforcing collection of income tax
deficiency by summary proceedings after the expiration of the 3 year period
provided for in the NIRC? YES
- Granting that the Collector could be restrained, WON the CTA had any power to
grant an injunction without requiring the filing of a bond as prescribed RA 1125?
YES

Jessa, Candice, Jabie, Cels,

RATIO:
The three year prescriptive period provided under Section 51 (d) of the NIRC
constituted a limitation to the right of the Government to enforce the collection
of income taxes by the summary proceedings of distraint and levy though it
could proceed to recover the taxes due by the institution of the corresponding
civil action
The CIR, however, relies on Section 305 of the NIRC which states that: No
court shall have authority to grant an injunction to restrain the collection of any
internal revenue tax, fee, or charge.
Section 11 of RA 1125, however, provides, in part that: when in the opinion of
the Court the collection by the Bureau of Internal Revenue . . . may jeopardize
the interest of the Government and/or the taxpayer the Court at any stage of
the proceeding may suspend said collection.
It can be inferred from then that there may be instances like the one at bar,
when the CIR could be restrained from proceeding with the collection, levy,
distraint and/or sale of any property of the taxpayer.
RE: THE BOND REQUIREMENT
The requirement of the bond as a condition precedent to the issuance of the
writ of injunction applies only in cases where the processes by which the
collection sought to be made by means thereof are carried out in consonance
with the law for such cases provided and not when said processes are
obviously in violation of the law to the extreme that they have to be
SUSPENDED for jeopardizing the interests of the taxpayer. It is therefore
premised on the assumption that the collection by summary proceedings is by
itself in accordance with existing law; and then what is suspended is the act of
collecting. IN THE CASE AT BAR what the CTAsuspended was the use of the
method employed to verify the collection which was evidently illegal after the
lapse of the three-year limitation period. The CTA issued the injunction in
question on the basis of its finding that the means intended to be used by
petitioner in the collection of the alleged deficiency taxes were in violation of
law.
Assuming arguendo, however, that the posting of a Bond is necessary and
Reyes refuses to comply, The pronouncement made by the respondent Court,
after due hearing, to the effect that summary methods of collection by distraint
and levy would be improper in the instant case, was done in the exercise of its
power to pass judgment on all matters brought before it. It was a lawful
exercise of the jurisdiction
PINEDA v LANTIN Regala, J. (1962)
FACTS:
Lacson and Lopez wrote a letter of complaint to the Securities and Exchange
Commission (SEC), claiming that Bacolod-Murcia Milling through its President and
General Manager J. Amado Araneta has committed various acts in violation of its
Articles of Incorporation and pertinent provisions of the corporation code and the
rules of the SEC.
Mariano Pineda was SEC Commissioner who ordered the investigation and
designated Yabyabin and Pizarro as investigators.
Yabyabin and Pizarro subpoenaed Araneta and other officers of Bacolod-Murcia.

Joni, Rai, Aldous, Pat, Russ, Mark, Celeni, Ros

Bacolod-Murcia filed a Petition to Reconsider Order and Set Aside Subpoena


Duces Tecum. Their theory is that since the SEC has not adopted the rules that
allows them to subpoena, therefore such order was invalid.
o
PINEDA denied the petition.
Bacolod-Murcia and Araneta filed a Motion to Quash and Discontinue Entire
Proceedings, also based on the allegedly illegal subpoena.
o
Again, PINEDA denied the motion
Bacolod-Murcia and Araneta now filed a special civil action for prohibition
against Yabyabin and Pizarro, and enjoined Lacson and Lopez as respondents. It
was docketed in the sala of Judge Gregorio Lantin.
Yabyabin and Pizarros Theory: The writ applied for would amount to a review, and
would overturn the jurisdiction of the SEC, which is beyond the jurisdiction of the
CFI (SC dapat), so they filed a motion to dismiss.
LANTIN deferred Yabyabin and Pizarros motion to dismiss until trial on the merits.
Yabyabin and Pizarro filed an answer to the petition for prohibition.
PINEDA again raised the issue of jurisdiction and that it was beyond the authority
of the Manila CFI to review the SEC. denied again by Judge LANTIN.

ISSUE:
May a Court of First Instance enjoin the Securities and Exchange Commission?
HELD/RULING:
NO. Under the Rules of Court and the law applicable to the case at bar, a CFI has no
jurisdiction to grant injunctive reliefs against the SEC. That power is lodged
exclusively to the Supreme Court.
Whenever a party is aggrieved by the ruling of the SEC, his remedy is to go to the
Supreme Court to petition for a review and not to seek relief from courts of general
jurisdiction.
Only the Supreme Court possesses the jurisdiction to review or pass upon the
legality or correctness of any order or decision of the SEC, and, as circumstances
might warrant, to modify, reverse, or set aside the same.
Even with the private respondents theory that the principal purpose of the action is
to question the jurisdiction of the SEC, the main aim of the petition for prohibition
is still to order a review of the SEC.
The private respondents cannot also claim that the questioned orders were merely
interlocutory, because the general rule is that interlocutory orders are not
appealable.
The last ruling was about the SECs indispensable role to Philippine society as the
safeguard agency for corporation which affects our economy and the countrys
citizenry. The regular courts cannot overstep these objectives.
LEMI vs. VALENCIA | Castro, J. (1968)
FACTS
- RA 1553 authorized petitioner Lemi to construct, maintain and operate radio
broadcasting and television station (Station DZQR). The Radio Control Office of the
Department of Public Works and Communications issued to him a license. This license
was effective for one year, that is, from May 24, 1960 to May 23, 1961.
- On April 12, 1961, Lemi applied for renewal of the license and paid the corresponding
renewal license fee of P50. The Radio Control Office took no action on this renewal
application. On May 31, 1962, he again applied for renewal of the license, to cover the

Jessa, Candice, Jabie, Cels,

period from May 24, 1962 to May 23, 1963, and again paid the corresponding renewal
license fee. Again the Radio Control Office took no action thereon.
- He continued operating the radio station without any interference whatsoever from
the office of the Public Works Secretary and the Radio Control Office. As a matter of
fact, a letter of the chief even requested the licensee "to feature the many newly
recorded Philippine Christmas songs."
- While the radio station DZQR was broadcasting, an agent of the Public Works
Secretary, and a radio regulation inspector of the Radio Control Office, accompanied
by agents of the PAGCOM, armed with a search warrant, searched the radio station
and thereafter seized and carried away a radio transmitter which was being used at the
time, on the pretext that it "was without any name plate or serial number and is entirely
different from the authorized transmitter," in gross violation of the Radio Control Law.
- Lemi instituted the present original petition for mandamus with preliminary
injunction.
- The Court issued a resolution commanding the respondents to return the radio
transmitter, upon the filing of a bond of P1,000.
- Petitioner avers the ff. (among many others):
- The summary and unwarranted seizure of the transmitter "was a wanton and
deliberate disregard" of the pertinent provisions of the Radio Control Law and the
regulations promulgated thereunder providing for "due formal hearing before a seizure
or closure";
- that the transmitter "was never illegally used as it was used with full knowledge and
approval and consent of the respondents themselves ";
- and that the continued deprivation of the use of the transmitter during the
pendency of the petition would work great injustice and irreparable damage and
injury to him because he would then be prevented from fulfilling his contractual
commitments with his numerous clientele.
- The petitioner further averred the chief radio inspector of the Radio Control Office,
inspected the station and found the equipment and installations therein "in order and in
compliance with the pertinent requirements of radio regulations, [and] recommended
the issuance of a radio station license"; and that in spite of such recommendation, the
respondents Public Works Secretary and Chief of the Radio Control Office, "with the
evident purpose of prejudicing the operations of the herein petitioner, unlawfully
neglected the performance of their duties by maliciously withholding the license for
station DZQR already paid by the petitioner, although the law specifically enjoins
issuance thereof as a ministerial duty after petitioner had complied with the
requirements of the law and regulations."
- Respondents in their answer avers: that the radio transmitter was seized "by virtue
of a valid search warrant after it was clearly established .. that the transmitter .. was
illegally constructed and installed without any previous permit".
- The respondents further averred that the renewal application was filed only on May
15, 1962, in violation of Section 2 of Act 3846, as amended which provides that
applications for renewal of radio licenses should be filed at least two months before the
expiry dates of the licenses sought to be renewed.
- Respondents further maintained that the petitioner not having exhausted other
available remedies in the ordinary course of law, namely, (1) a court action to quash
the search warrant, and (2) an appeal to the respondent Secretary, the petition is
prematurely filed.
- Court issued a resolution by virtue of which Court granted the writ of
preliminary mandatory injunction commanding the respondents to return to the
petitioner the radio transmitter.

Jessa, Candice, Jabie, Cels,

Joni, Rai, Aldous, Pat, Russ, Mark, Celeni, Ros

ISSUE/S & HELD:


Is the petitioner entitled to the reliefs prayed for? YES.

RATIONALE
- Section 3 of Rule 65 of the new Rules of Court authorizes the issuance of a writ of
mandamus.
- It is essential that the plaintiff has a legal right to the thing demanded and that it is the
imperative duty of the defendant to perform the act required and that there is no plain,
speedy and adequate remedy in the ordinary course of law.
- The legal right of the plaintiff to the thing demanded must be well-defined, clear and
certain. The corresponding duty of the defendant to perform the required act must also
be clear and specific. Mandamus will not issue in doubtful cases, as it simply
commands the exercise of a power already possessed or to perform a duty already
imposed. Mandamus will lie to compel action, or to remedy official inaction.
- Under Section 3 of the Radio Control Law, 7 the Public Works Secretary is
empowered to regulate the establishment, use and operation of all radio stations and
to issue such rules ad regulations as may be necessary.
- The exercise of the above-enumerated specific powers and duties involves judgment
and discretion on the part of the Secretary.
- A purely ministerial act or duty, in contradistinction to a discretional act, is one which
an officer or tribunal performs in a given state of facts, in a prescribed manner, in
obedience to the mandate of a legal authority, without regard to or the exercise of his
own judgment upon the impropriety of the act done.
- If the law imposes a duty upon a public officer, and gives him the right to decide how
or when the duty shall be performed, such duty is discretionary and not ministerial. The
duty is ministerial only when the discharge of the same requires neither the exercise of
official discretion nor judgment.
- In the case at bar, the respondents Secretary and Chief of the Radio Control Office
patently neglected the discharge of the duty, under Section 3(1), to "approve or
disapprove" the petitioner's applications for renewal of the radio license.
- The respondents maintain, however, that the petitioner is not entitled to the
renewal of his license, because the first renewal application was filed only on
April 12, 1961, 41 days more or less before license expired.
- This violation ceased to exist when it was condoned by the fact of the previous nonobservance by station operators of radio laws and regulations of the Radio Control
Office regarding filing of petitions for renewal.
- Petitioner had been allowed to operate his radio station for so long practically without
any interference on the part of the Radio Control Office.
- The respondents further maintain that in the operation of radio station DZQR,
the petitioner was using a transmitter different from the authorized one: Court
resolved this issue in our resolution of February 28, 1963, by virtue of which we
granted the writ of preliminary mandatory injunction commanding the respondents to
return to the petitioner the radio transmitter.
- The use of the radio transmitter by the petitioner having been "known and - to a
certain extent tolerated" by Radio Control Office, "the violation in legal effect,
ceased to exist."
- The respondents finally maintain that the present petition is premature because the
petitioner failed to exhaust available remedies on the administrative level. This

contention is without merit. There is no statute providing for an appeal from an action
taken by the Radio Control Office to the Secretary of Public Works and
Communications.
- And even if an appeal there be to the respondent Secretary, this remedy is not such
"adequate remedy in the ordinary course of law" as would bar the present action
for mandamus, for the acts committed by the respondents are "patently illegal"
having been performed in violation of the Radio Control Law and the rules and
regulations promulgated thereunder, and the immediate return of the transmitter
demanded "urgency of judicial intervention" as its seizure completely
immobilized the radio station DZQR and prevented the petitioner from complying
with his contractual commitments.
DISPOSITIVE: The writ of preliminary mandatory injunction issued is made permanent.
Honda vs. San Diego | Dizon
FACTS

Since the year 1959, respondent Alfred Hahn (Hahn) has been importing into
the Philippines Honda motorcycles bearing the trademarks "HONDA", "HM"
and "HM with wings", which trademarks are owned by Honda and duly registered
in Japan and other countries.

However, on 13 December 1962, Hahn filed with the Philippine Patent Office a
verified petition seeking the registration in his name of the trademark "HM
HONDA".

Honda opposed said application alleging that it manufactured and sold in the
Philippines and elsewhere motorcycles under the trademarks already mentioned
even way back and continues to do so in the present.

After the hearings had already begun and after Hondas evidence had already
been admitted, Hahn for the first time questioned the personality of Honda to
appear before the Patent Office and asked orally that its opposition be dismissed.

The oral MTD was denied.

On February 14, 1964, however, Hahn filed a motion for reconsideration


alleging that since Honda is not licensed to do business in the Philippines,
the Patent Office could not be said to have acquired jurisdiction over the
person of said oppositor.

On March 2, 1964 petitioner Director of Patents issued an order granting Hahn


a period of 10 days within which to submit the necessary authorities and
arguments in further support of his motion to dismiss.

However, instead of complying with the above order, Hahn filed a petition for
certiorari with the CFI of Rizal for the annulment of the order of the Patent Office
denying his motion to dismiss mainly on the ground that registration with the
Bureau of Commerce and a license from the Securities and Exchange
Commission is sine qua non to have capacity to become a party "applicant or
oppositor" to an inter partes proceeding in the Philippine Patent Office.

Honda, the Director of Patents, and the other petitioners herein filed their
respective motions to dismiss.

Notwithstanding the MTDs, the TC granted a writ of preliminary injunction


against the petitioners.

Hence, the present petition for certiorari and prohibition was filed for the
annulment of the orders of the TC.
ISSUES/HELD

Jessa, Candice, Jabie, Cels,

Joni, Rai, Aldous, Pat, Russ, Mark, Celeni, Ros

Was is proper for the lower court to issue a writ of preliminary injunction against the
Philippine Patent Office? NO.
RATIONALE

The petition must be granted because the TC had no jurisdiction to issue the
orders complained of.

It is well-settled that a writ of injunction or of prohibition or of certiorari may


be issued against a court only by another court superior in rank to the
former.

The law in this jurisdiction vests upon the SC, and not the lower courts, the
authority to review final orders and decisions of the Public Service
Commission.

In Iloilo Commercial, etc. vs. Public Service Commission, it was also held that, in
the absence of a specific delegation of jurisdiction to the Court of First
Instance to grant injunctive relief against orders of the Public Service
Commission, it would appear that no court, other than the Supreme Court,
possesses such jurisdiction.

It is also undeniable that the Philippine Patent Office and the Public Service
Commission are similarly situated and that both are, to say the least, of the
same rank or category as Courts of First Instance and, consequently, no one
of the latter has jurisdiction to issue a writ of injunction against them.

Furthermore, under Rule 44 of the Revised Rules of Court and Section 33 of


Republic Act No. 166, as amended, appeals from orders and decisions of the
Director of the Patent Office must likewise be taken to Us.
NOCNOC V. VERA
J. Santos | February 27, 1979
Facts

September 19, 1972- petitioner-claimant filed a claim for compensation under


Act 3842 (Workmens Compensation Act) with the Workmens Compensation
Unit (WCU) for the death of his son, Norberto Nocnoc, who died in an
accident on June 9, 1970, while employed as a bus conductor in the
transportation business of private respondent, Ernesto Manarang.

March 7, 1973- after the period to controvert the claim expired, private
respondent moved to dismiss the claim on the ground that petitioner had
previously entered into an amicable settlement of the claim and that the
petitioner-claimant had in fact received P2,330.

WCU denied the motion to dismiss, and instead awarded to petitionerclaimant the sum of P6,240, but deducted therefrom P2,330 which was
deemed as advance and/or partial payment on the claim.

MFR by private respondent was denied. Upon the finality of the award,
claimant-petitioner filed a petition for issuance of a writ of execution which
was opposed by respondent on the ground that the resolution of the pending
petition for certiorari is a prejudicial question.

The petition for review on certiorari was considered NOT FILED for failure of
petitioner Manarang to pay docket and legal fees.

July 20, 1973- a writ of execution was issued by the WCU.

August 4, 1973- respondent filed a complaint for injunction with the CFI to
enjoin the enforcement of the writ of execution so issued, upon his filing of a
bond, to be fixed by the court.

August 7, 1973- respondent judge ordered defendants, WCU Chief Referee


and the Provincial Sheriff to cease and desist from further orders.

Issue
WoN the CFI, as a court of general jurisdiction, can entertain a case impugning the
validity of the award of the Workmens Compensation Unit and, in the process restrain
the enforcement of a writ of execution issued by its Chief Referee. NO
Ratio

Respondent judges assertion of jurisdiction over private respondent


Manarangs complaint for injunctionarising from proceedings before the
Workmens Compensation Unit, on the ground that his court is one of
general jurisdictionis contrary to his courts admitted lack of jurisdiction
over Workmens Compensation cases.
In reviewing the alleged nullity of the award and enjoining its execution,
respondent Judge assumed jurisdiction over a matter which could have been
elevated from the Workmens Compensation Unit to the Workmens
Compensation Commission, and thereafter, on appeal, to the SC.
The decisions, orders and awards entered by the Workmens Compensation
Commission are appealable to the SC. The CFI is not empowered or clothed
with jurisdiction to modify, much less, annul an award or order of execution
issued by the Workmens Compensation Commission.
The proper forum to thresh out the validity of the WCUs award is the
Workmens Compensation Commission, and on appeal, the SC and not any
other, much less respondents court.
Furthermore, since Manarang did not pursue the remedy of a petition for
certiorari by seeking the reconsideration of the Courts resolution and/or
paying the required fees, and instead, went to respondent Judges court and
filed the complaint for injunction, he may be deemed to have abandoned the
appropriate recourse of appeal to the Workmens Compensation Commission
and to the SC.
The WCU correctly found that the claim was not controverted by private
respondent within the period prescribed by the Workmens Compensation Act
and the Commission Rules which require controversion of the claim within 14
days from the date of the disability or within 10 days after the employer or his
representative first acquired knowledge of the disability resulting from the
accident or illness.
After the failure to controvert, an employer cannot raise the question of being
denied his day in court.
Respondent Judge lost sight of the fact that the phrase court of general
jurisdiction is merely descriptive of Courts of First Instance which have
original jurisdiction over civil, criminal and other cases in contra-distinction to
courts of special, limited jurisdiction.
The descriptive phrase, however, does not and cannot confer CFIs power to
entertain an incident involving a Workmens Compensation case, which is
within the exclusive jurisdiction of the Workmens Compensation Commission
(WCC), and of the SC, in case of an appeal.

THE LAW-FACT DISTINCTION

Jessa, Candice, Jabie, Cels,

Joni, Rai, Aldous, Pat, Russ, Mark, Celeni, Ros

DAUAN V. THE SECRETARY OF AGRICULTURE AND NATURAL RESOURCES


Facts

Serapio Dauan filed an application for a homestead of his land, but it is


disputed whether the application was approved.

Subsequently, Dauan sold his rights to various portions of the homestead to


Simon Ilarde, Lord Calangan, Basilia Tomas without securing the approval of
the Secretary of Agriculture and Natural Resources

Dispute arose when Dauan asked the Bureau of Lands to cancel the
application for free patents, which Ilarde, Calangan and Tomas applied for,
pursuant to the alleged sale.
o
Dauan claimed that the transactions were loan agreements , and
assuming that it was a sale, the same was void for having been
made without the prior approval of the Secretary of Agriculture and
Natural Resources.
o
Ilarde, Calangan and Tomas maintain that since the homestead
application had not been approved, there was no need for the
approval of the Secretary for the validity of the sales.

Director of LandsHeld that the transactions were valid sales as the


homestead application has not been approved.

Dauan did not appeal to the President, instead filed a petition for certiorari in
the Court of First Instance of Nueva Vizcaya.

CFIHeld that even if the war caused the disappearance of the record,
pertinent papers lead to the conclusion that Dauan is the holder of a
perfected homestead, having remained in the possession for a period of
more than 23 years; (2) free patenet applications of Ilarde, Calangan and
Tomas are null and void for not having been previously approved by the
Secretary of Agriculture and Natural Resources
Issues/Held
[1] WoN the CFI erred in entertaining the petition for certiorari. 9NO. Conclusions
drawn from facts are conclusions of law, which the courts may properly review.

Ilarde, Calangan and Tomas argue that the decision of the Director of Lands
became final for failure of the appellee to appeal to the President, thus the
petition for certiorari should not have been entertained.
[2] WoN the CFI correctly concluded that Dauans application for homestead was
approved.YES.
Ratio
[1] Propriety of the Petition for Certiorari

The rule of exhaustion of administrative remedies would require an appeal to


be taken to the President before resort to the courts can be made.

BUT and exception to this rule would be where the question in dispute is
purely a legal one, and nothing of an administrative nature is to be or can be
done.
o
The question whether from the evidence submitted by the parties it
could fairly be concluded that appellee's homestead application had
been granted is a question of fact.
o
HOWEVER, because the records of the Bureau of Lands had been
destroyed during the war that circumstantial evidence had to be
9

Important issue to the topic. I think.

introduced, there was a need for the court to draw a conclusion


from the same.
o
The conclusion drawn from the facts is a conclusion of law
which the courts may review.
[2] Approval of the Homestead Application

First, in 1936, one Teodocia Escobedo claimed the land in question and its
improvements and contested appellee's application but the Director of Lands
ruled that Dauan had been allowed to enter the land and that his application
had been granted, since under section 13 of the Public Land Act entry is
allowed only after the approval of the application.

Second, the documents entitled "Transfer of Homestead Rights," where


Dauan transferred his rights to 4 hectares to Calangan and 3 hectares to
Tomas, recite in the first "WHEREAS" that "by virtue of Homestead
Application No. 206623 approved on January 28, 1941 in accordance with
Chapter IV of Com. Act No. 141, as amended, the Director of Lands allowed
SERAPIO DAUAN to enter upon, occupy, cultivate, and reside on the tract of
land described...

Third, if Dauan's application had not been approved then he had no right to
transfer to the appellants, since under section 13 of the Public Land Act, only
after the approval of his application can an applicant enter and cultivate the
land being applied for.

Fourth, Dauan had all qualifications prescribed by the statute and the
presumption is that in the performance of his duty, the Director granted
appellee's application.
o
Section 13 of the Public Land Act commands the Director to
approve the application upon the filing thereof if he finds that the
application should be approved...and authorize the applicant to take
possession of the land upon payment of five pesos, Philippine
currency, as entry fee.
o
The fact that appellee was in possession of the homestead at the
time of the conveyances to the appellants, coupled by the lack of
anything to show that he was not in possession of the requisite
qualifications, fairly indicates that his application had been
approved by the Director of Lands.

Therefore, the conveyances to Ilarde, Calangan and Tomas, which were


admittedly made without the previous approval of the Secretary, are void.
o
Ilarde, Calangan and Tomas should return the possession of the
land in question to the Dauan upon the return to them of the
purchase price.
o
HOWEVER, a transfer of rights without the previous approval of the
Secretary shall result in the cancellation of the entry and the refusal
of the patent of the Dauan

But the cancellation is not automatic and as long as the


Government has not chosen to act, the rights of Dauan
still stand.
REYES VDA DE SANTIAGO vs REYES
Facts:

February 29, 1960 | Labrador, J.

Jessa, Candice, Jabie, Cels,

Joni, Rai, Aldous, Pat, Russ, Mark, Celeni, Ros

Santiago was the driver of an autocalesa belonging to respondent and was


last seen operating said autocalesa at 9:00 in the evening of September 26,
1955
In the morning of September 27, 1955, his dead body was found in Tayabas,
Quezon, a victim of murder by persons who were at large and whose
identities were not known
It appears that there is a specific instruction given by the respondent to the
deceased to follow the route prescribed by the Public Service Commission (in
the case of jeep driven by the deceased, its route is within Manila and
suburbs)
it has always been the practice of the respondent that, whenever the driver is
accepted, specific instruction is given to him to follow faithfully the traffic rules
and regulations, especially speeding and overloading, and he is requested
also not to operate beyond the route given by the Public Service Commission
Workmens Compenation Commission made the following finding on the
question as to whether or not the death of Victoriano Santiago arose out of
and was occasioned in the course of his employment
Finding: the deceased had received specific instructions not to
operate beyond the route given by the Public Service Commission
(only within the city of Manila), and his act in getting outside of the
city was his free and voluntary act, because he disregarded the
orders of his employer as well as the rules and regulations of the
Public Service Commission
the deceased willfully violated Public Service Commission rules and
regulations and, therefore, death did not arise out of or by
reason of his employment.
Associate Commissioner Nieves Baens del Rosario dissented from the
opinion of the majority:
Cited Larson: `The burden of proving his cases beyond speculation
and conjecture is on the claimant. He is aided in some jurisdiction
by presumptions that help to supply the minimum evidence
necessary to support an award, and which shift the burden to the
defendant when some connection of the injury with the work has
been prove.'
Cited Batangas Transportation case: `Our position is that once it
is proved that the employee died in the course of the employment,
the legal presumption in the contrary, is that the claim comes within
the provisions of the compensation law (Sec. 44). In other words,
that accident arose out of the workmen's employment
Another presumption created in favor of the employee and which is
more specific than the all embracing presumption that the claim
comes within the provisions of `the Act' is that one provided in subsection 3 of Section 44. It reads: `3. That the injury was not
occasioned by the willful intention of the injured employee to bring
about the injury or death of himself or of another.' This presumption
arises from the natural rule, against suicides and once the
presumption is established, the burden of proof shifts to the
employer. He is, under the Workmen's Compensation Act, required
to present `substantial evidence' to overcome such presumption.

Cited Travellers Insurance Company vs. Cardillo: `The evidence


necessary to overcome the presumption then must do more than
create doubt or set up non-compensable alternative explanations of
the accident. It must be `evidence such as a reasonable mind must
accept as adequate to support a conclusion.' no such evidence
presented by respondent
Travellers Insurance Company vs. Cardillo: `The death of the
employee usually deprives the dependent of his best witness - the
employee himself - and, especially where the accident is
unwitnessed, some latitude should be given the claimant. Hence,
presumptions or inference that an unwitnessed death arose out o\f
the employment are allowed in some jurisdictions, where the
employer provides no contrary proof, and when last seen deceased
was working or had properly recessed.'

Issue: WON the drivers death arose out of and was occasioned in the course of his
employment (WON the going of the deceased to Quezon province was made
voluntarily by him)
Held: YES, presumption not overturned (not proven)

Section 43 of the Workmen's Compensation Act, as amended by Section 24


of Republic Act 772, establishes the following presumptions:
"In any proceeding for the enforcement of the claim for compensation under
this Act, it shall be presumed in the absence of substantial evidence to the
contrary 1. That the claim comes within the provisions of this Act;
2. That sufficient notice thereof was given;
3. That the injury was not occasioned by the willful intention of the
injured employee to bring about the injury or death of himself or of
another;
4. That the injury did not result solely from the intoxication of the
injured employee while on duty; and
5. That the contents of verified medical and surgical reports introduced
in evidence by claimants for compensation are correct."

The flaw in the reasoning of the majority is that it violates the presumption
expressly laid down by the following provision of Section 69, par. (q), rule
123, Rules of Court:
"The following presumptions are satisfactory if uncontradicted, but may be
contradicted and overcome by other evidence: (q) That the ordinary course of
business has been followed

no question that immediately before leaving Manila the deceased was


engaged in his employment The presumption is that he performed his
duties legally and in accordance with the rules and regulations, because that
was his regular obligation.

Inasmuch as the law established the presumption that the deceased followed
the law and regulations, it was incumbent upon the respondent to prove that
the deceased voluntarily went out of his route and drove his jeepney towards
the province of Quezon, not that the deceased voluntarily went to that
province thereby going beyond the route provided for the vehicle that he was
driving.

Jessa, Candice, Jabie, Cels,

Joni, Rai, Aldous, Pat, Russ, Mark, Celeni, Ros

Petitioners claim that the deceased voluntarily went out of his ordinary route
but they also have the obligation to prove this fact, this being an affirmative
allegation They failed to do so.
There being no such evidence submitted by the respondent, i.e., that the
going of the deceased to Quezon province was made voluntarily by him, SC
concludes pursuant to the presumption that every person performs his duty
or obligation, that he was forced by circumstances beyond his will to go
outside his ordinary route;
In other words, SC concludes that while driving in the city he must have been
forced to go out and drive to the province of Quezon on the threats of the
malefactors guilty of assaulting and killing him against his (deceased) will.

Aboitiz Shipping Corp. vs Pepito Sanchez; Dec 17, 1966


FACTS
- Between the night of November 30 and the early morning of December 1, 1961,
Demetrio Pepito, a crew member of M/V P. Aboitiz, disappeared while vessel was on
voyage.
- December 26, 1961 Aboitiz received from respondent Vivencia Ando Pepito a letter
dated December 12, 1961 which notified them that it is their belief that Demetrio is
already dead.
- January 12, 1962 - Vivencia Ando Pepito, for herself and in behalf of her children,
filed with the DOLE Regional Office a notice and claim for compensation, asking for
death benefits, and stating that Demetrio died while the vessel Aboitiz was going to
Tandag from Surigao.
- Aboitiz Shipping received the letter on February 15 and sent a letter dated February
16. They claimed that Demetrio was found missing Dec 1, and that he disappeared
while off duty when the vessel was near Bucas Grande Island while the ship was in
navigation on a calm sea and good weather. They did not know whether he purposely
jumped and swam ashore.
- March 21, 1962 - The Regional Administrator, without hearing, issued an award for
death benefits to respondents, on the ground that the right to compensation of the
claimant has not been controverted by respondent within the period provided for by
law.
- Aboitiz appealed which was not granted by the Workmens Compensation
Commission.
ISSUE : WON the ruling of the Commission was correct? NO
HELD
The purported controversion filed on February 16, 1962-was made beyond the
periods set forth in the law and the rules and regulations of the Workmen's
Compensation Commission, namely, 14 days from the date of accident or 10 days
from knowledge thereof.
- By Section 2 Rule 7 of the Rules of the Workmen's Compensation Commission, All
the general rules of procedure in the Courts of First Instance shall be suppletory to the
Rules of the Workmen's Compensation Commission but the commission shall not be
bound by the technical rules of procedure.
- This claim was filed on Jan 12, 1962, barely 42 days after the event took place.
At that time, no presumption existed that Demetrio Pepito was dead. The boat was
not lost. This opens up a number of possibilities, as nothing is certain and nobody
knows what happened to him. He could have transferred to another vessel or

watercraft. He could have swam to safety, he could have died or he could have taken
his own life. Legal implications, such as right to compensation, succession, legal
status of the wife, are so important that courts should not easily be carried to the
conclusion that the man is dead. The result is that death cannot be taken as a
fact.
- Non-controversion in compensation cases, as in the case of pleadings in
ordinary civil cases, simply means admission of facts, not conclusions of law.
The mere failure to controvert the statement that Demetrio Pepito is believed to be
"dead" or "deceased" because he "was lost" or was "reported missing", does not import
an admission that the man is actually dead, but that he was just lost or missing. .
- Aboitiz Shipping was directed to pay compensation without inquiry into the fact and
circumstances of death. This trenches upon petitioner's right to due process enshrined
in Section 1 (1) of Article III of the Constitution that "No person shall be deprived of life,
liberty, or property without due process of law." The award having been made before
petitioner was given an opportunity to be heard on the debatable fact and
circumstances of death, that award has no leg to stand on.
- The investigation report of Anselmo Morales saying that no one knew what happened
to Demetrio because he disappeared at midnight on a rough sea doesnt prove death
but simply confirms a fact of disappearance. Besides, the report wasnt brought up
at any hearing and so it would just be like hearsay. Under Sec. 7 of the Workmens
Compensation Law10, the report is of no value as evidence since Aboitiz wasnt given
an opportunity to examine the report.
-The appealed decision is set aside and the record is ordered returned to the
Workmen's Compensation Commission with instructions 1. To hold a hearing, with
notice to the parties, to determine (a) whether Demetrio Pepito is alive; or (b) whether
he should be presumed dead, under the provisions of paragraph 3, Article 391 of the
Civil Code; and (c) the circumstances of death if it be found or presumed that he died;
and 2. To render judgment accordingly.
QUESTION OF LAW
Ortua v. Singson Encarnacion
Malcolm, J. | January 30, 1934
FACTS

Petitioner Fortunato Ortua filed an application with the Bureau of Lands for
the purchase of a tract of public land situated in Camarines Sur.

Ortuas application was rejected. 2 MRs were and denied.

Ortua stated in his application that he was a Filipino citizen.

The Director of Lands held that Ortua was a Chinese citizen.


o
He concedes that presumptively Ortua is a Filipino citizen but
certain acts of the latter demonstrates his forfeiture of such
citizenship: (1) he voluntarily applied for a landing certificate of
residence, which is only issued to Chinese persons; and (2) when
his application for registration for a boat was denied on the ground
that he was Chinese citizen, Ortua submitted to the ruling.
ISSUES & HELD
(1) WON the decision of the Director of Lands on questions of fact and law are
conclusive. Only as to questions of fact.
10

All ex parte evidence received by the Commissioner shall be reduced to writing and any party in
interest shall have the opportunity to examine and rebut the same.

Jessa, Candice, Jabie, Cels,

Joni, Rai, Aldous, Pat, Russ, Mark, Celeni, Ros

As a question of law:
(2)W Ortua should be considered a Filipino or a Chinese citizen. He is a Filipino
citizen. A clear of error of law resulted when the Director of Lands did not consider
Ortua as a Filipino citizen.
RATIONALE
Issue #1

According to Sec. 4 of the Public Land Law, The Director of Lands is by law
vested with direct executive control over land matters and his decisions as to
questions of fact shall be conclusive when approved by the Secretary of
Agriculture and Commerce. The Secretary of Agriculture and Commerce is
made the executive officer charged with carrying out the provisions of such
law and he performs this duty through the Director of Lands (sec. 3).

The Director of Lands has been made by law a quasi-judicial officer who
makes findings of fact and decides the qualifications of applicants for the
purchase of public lands.

The decision rendered by the Director of Lands and approved by the


Secretary of Agriculture and Commerce, upon a question of fact is
conclusive and not subject to be reviewed by the courts, in the absence of a
showing that such decision was rendered in consequence of fraud,
imposition, or mistake, other than error of judgment in estimating the value or
effect of evidence, regardless of whether or not it is consistent with the
preponderance of the evidence, so long as there is some evidence upon
which the finding in question could be made.

However, the courts still have the right to review the decisions of the Bureau
of lands. The decision of the Director of Lands as relates to a question of
law is not conclusive upon the courts, but is subject to review. Any action of
the Director of Lands which is based upon a misconstruction of the law can
be corrected by the courts.
Issue #2

One condition for the purchase of a tract of public agricultural land in the
Public Land Law is that the purchaser shall be a citizen of lawful age of the
Philippine or the US.

Ortua had a sort of dual citizenship and he had within his power to elect to
become a Chinese citizen of Filipino citizen.

Based on his acts, Ortua did not repudiate his Filipino citizenship contrary to
what was found by the Director of Lands.
o
The latters decision was based on 2 facts which may be explained:
(1) When he returned from China it was the most natural thing in
the world for him to land as a Chinese, for this would facilitate entry
and obviate complications; and (2) when he applied for the
registration of a boat, there may have been any number of reasons
why he did not appeal the its denial.

Consideration must be given to Ortuas acts and desire to become a Filipino


citizen: taking a Filipino name, going into business and improving the
property here in question to a great extent and he has been domiciled in the
Philippines.

MEJIA v MAPA | Bautista | 1954


FACTS:
The Bureau of Forestry granted Maximo Alfafara a permit to construct fishpond
dikes within a certain lot. However, the flood destroyed the dikes and so he
decided to convert it into a rice field
To this effect, Maximo entered into an agreement with Mapa whereby the latter
would convert the land into a rice field on the condition that the crop would be
divided between the two (a landlord-tenant relationship was created)
Maximo ceded his rights and interests to his son Catalino
Since the land was converted into a rice field, Catalino applied for a homestead
under his name while at the same time continuing the same agreement with Mapa
as share croppers
Upon the death of Catalino, Mapa began asserting his right over the land and filed
a homestead application. He also refused to give the share corresponding to
Catalino to his widow (petitioner)
The Director of Lands granted Alfafaras application
The Secretary of Agriculture and Natural Resources (DANR) upheld the findings
of fact11 made by the Secretary. HOWEVER, he REVERSED the Director by
applying the rule that prior to the certification by the Bureau of Forestry that a
parcel of forestland is already released from the forest zone, the DANR does not
recognize any right of preference in favor of either the actual occupant or any
homestead applicant. BUT, between the actual occupant of a parcel of agricultural
land and an applicant whose application was filed prior to its certification by the
Director, DANR always recognizes the preferential right of the actual occupant.
On appeal to the CA, Mapa invoked the doctrine that a decision rendered by the
Director and approved by the Secretary, upon a question of fact is conclusive and
not subject to review by the courts, in the absence of a showing that such decision
was rendered in consequence of fraud, imposition or mistake, other than error of
judgment in estimating the value or effect of evidence
CA forwarded the case to the SC on the ground that the appeal involves purely
questions of law
ISSUE: WoN the doctrine invoked by Mapa should be applied in this case
DECISION: NO.
The philosophy behind the doctrine is that if the decision of the Director on a
question of fact is concurred in by the Secretary, it becomes conclusive upon the
courts upon the theory that the subject has been thoroughly weighed and
discussed and it must be given faith and credit, but not so when there is a
disagreement
MOREOVER, even if there is unanimity in the decision, the doctrine would not
apply if the conclusions drawn by the Secretary from the facts found are
erroneous. These conclusions can still be the subject of judicial review for these
are questions of law that are reserved to the courts to determine
IN THIS CASE, the doctrine cannot be applied based on two reasons:
1. There is no unanimity of decision. The decision by the Director was
REVOKED by the Secretary
11

Additional facts: The land was released from the forest zone only in 1949, and the permit granted to
Maximo to possess the land for purposes of homestead was in 1923. And Catalinos application was filed
only in 1930

Joni, Rai, Aldous, Pat, Russ, Mark, Celeni, Ros

2.

The Secretarys decision was erroneous. Supposing that the permit


granted to Maximo has no legal effect, both Maximo and Mapa have
acted in good faith in the honest belief that what they were doing was
legal and in pursuance of the permit granted to Maximo under the
authority of the law. Having entered into that contractual relation in good
faith, such contract has produced the relation of landlord and tenant. And
this relation continued not only when Maximo assigned his right under
the permit to Catalino, but also when the latter died and his widow
(petitioner) took over and continued possessing the land as successorin-interest of her husband. AS SUCH, Mapas possession of the land is
that of a tenant and this should benefit the landlord. THUS, the petitioner
is the actual occupant and her application for homestead should be
granted

Jessa, Candice, Jabie, Cels,