You are on page 1of 2

Lambino vs.

COMELEC
G.R. No. 174153, October 25, 2006
Facts:
Raul L. Lambino, Erico B. Aumentado, and the other petitioners, have gathered 6,327,925
signatures for an initiative petition to change the 1987 Constitution. On August 25, 2006, they
filed a petition with the COMELEC to hold a plebiscite that will ratify their petition under Section
5 and 7 of Republic Act no. 6735. They alleged that they have attained the 12% of all registered
voters, with each legislative district represented by at least 3% of its registered voters as
required by Article XVII sec. 2 of the Constitution, and that the COMELEC election registrars
had verified the signatures.
The petition proposes changes that will shift the Bicameral-Presidential system to a UnicameralParliamentary form of government by modifying Article VI sec. 1-7 and Article VII sec. 1-4 and
adding Article XVIII entitled “Transitory Provisions.”
On August 31, 2006, the COMELEC denied the petition, invoking the ruling in Santiago v.
Commission on Elections declaring RA 6735 inadequate to implement the initiative clause on
proposals to amend the Constitution.
Issue:
Whether the Lambino Group’s initiative petition complies with Section 2, Article XVII of the
Constitution on amendments to the Constitution through a people’s initiative;
Whether this Court should revisit its ruling in Santiago declaring RA 6735 “incomplete,
inadequate or wanting in essential terms and conditions” to implement the initiative clause on
proposals to amend the Constitution
Whether the COMELEC committed grave abuse of discretion in denying due course to the
Lambino Group’s petition.
Ruling:
They didn’t comply with the basic requirement. there are two elements of initiative; first: the
people must be the author and sign the entire proposal. No agent or representatice can sign on
their behalf; second: the proposal must be embodied in a petition. In Lambino’s petition, they
gathered the signatures by merely asks the individuals whether they approve a shift from the
Bicameral-Presidential to the Unicameral-Parliamentary system of government. They admitted
that the signature sheet did not contain the full text of the proposed amendments. They failed to
show the court that the initiative signer must be informed at the time of the signing of the nature
and effect, failure to do so is deceptive and misleading which render the initiative void.
Therefore the COMELEC didn’t commit grave abuse of discretion.
Furthermore, the framers of the constitution intended a clear distinction between amendment
and revision, it is intended that initiative as stated in sec. 2 art. 17 of the Constitution may
propose only amendments to the Constitution. The proposal of shifting the BicameralPresidential to a Unicameral-Parliamentary system is a revision, therefore cannot be done
through initiative.

because the petition already warrants dismissal .There is no need to revisit Santiago.