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EN BANC

G.R. No. L-45081

July 15, 1936

JOSE A. ANGARA, petitioner,
vs.
THE ELECTORAL COMMISSION, PEDRO YNSUA, MIGUEL
CASTILLO, and DIONISIO C. MAYOR,respondents.
Godofredo Reyes for petitioner.
Office of the Solicitor General Hilado for respondent Electoral
Commission.
Pedro Ynsua in his own behalf.
No appearance for other respondents.
LAUREL, J.:
This is an original action instituted in this court by the petitioner, Jose
A. Angara, for the issuance of a writ of prohibition to restrain and
prohibit the Electoral Commission, one of the respondents, from
taking further cognizance of the protest filed by Pedro Ynsua,
another respondent, against the election of said petitioner as
member of the National Assembly for the first assembly district of the
Province of Tayabas.
The facts of this case as they appear in the petition and as admitted
by the respondents are as follows:
(1) That in the elections of September 17, 1935, the
petitioner, Jose A. Angara, and the respondents, Pedro
Ynsua, Miguel Castillo and Dionisio Mayor, were candidates
voted for the position of member of the National Assembly
for the first district of the Province of Tayabas;

(2) That on October 7, 1935, the provincial board of
canvassers, proclaimed the petitioner as member-elect of
the National Assembly for the said district, for having
received the most number of votes;
(3) That on November 15, 1935, the petitioner took his oath
of office;
(4) That on December 3, 1935, the National Assembly in
session assembled, passed the following resolution:
[No. 8]
RESOLUCION CONFIRMANDO LAS
ACTAS DE AQUELLOS DIPUTADOS
CONTRA QUIENES NO SE HA
PRESENTADO PROTESTA.
Se resuelve: Que las actas de eleccion de
los Diputados contra quienes no se hubiere
presentado debidamente una protesta antes
de la adopcion de la presente resolucion
sean, como por la presente, son aprobadas
y confirmadas.
Adoptada, 3 de diciembre, 1935.
(5) That on December 8, 1935, the herein respondent Pedro
Ynsua filed before the Electoral Commission a "Motion of
Protest" against the election of the herein petitioner, Jose A.
Angara, being the only protest filed after the passage of
Resolutions No. 8 aforequoted, and praying, among otherthings, that said respondent be declared elected member of

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the National Assembly for the first district of Tayabas, or that
the election of said position be nullified;
(6) That on December 9, 1935, the Electoral Commission
adopted a resolution, paragraph 6 of which provides:
6. La Comision no considerara ninguna protesta que
no se haya presentado en o antes de este dia.
(7) That on December 20, 1935, the herein petitioner, Jose
A. Angara, one of the respondents in the aforesaid protest,
filed before the Electoral Commission a "Motion to Dismiss
the Protest", alleging (a) that Resolution No. 8 of Dismiss the
Protest", alleging (a) that Resolution No. 8 of the National
Assembly was adopted in the legitimate exercise of its
constitutional prerogative to prescribe the period during
which protests against the election of its members should be
presented; (b) that the aforesaid resolution has for its object,
and is the accepted formula for, the limitation of said period;
and (c) that the protest in question was filed out of the
prescribed period;
(8) That on December 27, 1935, the herein respondent,
Pedro Ynsua, filed an "Answer to the Motion of Dismissal"
alleging that there is no legal or constitutional provision
barring the presentation of a protest against the election of a
member of the National Assembly after confirmation;
(9) That on December 31, 1935, the herein petitioner, Jose
A. Angara, filed a "Reply" to the aforesaid "Answer to the
Motion of Dismissal";
(10) That the case being submitted for decision, the Electoral
Commission promulgated a resolution on January 23, 1936,
denying herein petitioner's "Motion to Dismiss the Protest."

The application of the petitioner sets forth the following grounds for
the issuance of the writ prayed for:
(a) That the Constitution confers exclusive jurisdiction upon
the electoral Commission solely as regards the merits of
contested elections to the National Assembly;
(b) That the Constitution excludes from said jurisdiction the
power to regulate the proceedings of said election contests,
which power has been reserved to the Legislative
Department of the Government or the National Assembly;
(c) That like the Supreme Court and other courts created in
pursuance of the Constitution, whose exclusive jurisdiction
relates solely to deciding the merits of controversies
submitted to them for decision and to matters involving their
internal organization, the Electoral Commission can regulate
its proceedings only if the National Assembly has not availed
of its primary power to so regulate such proceedings;
(d) That Resolution No. 8 of the National Assembly is,
therefore, valid and should be respected and obeyed;
(e) That under paragraph 13 of section 1 of the ordinance
appended to the Constitution and paragraph 6 of article 7 of
the Tydings-McDuffie Law (No. 127 of the 73rd Congress of
the United States) as well as under section 1 and 3 (should
be sections 1 and 2) of article VIII of the Constitution, this
Supreme Court has jurisdiction to pass upon the
fundamental question herein raised because it involves an
interpretation of the Constitution of the Philippines.
On February 25, 1936, the Solicitor-General appeared and filed an
answer in behalf of the respondent Electoral Commission interposing
the following special defenses:

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(a) That the Electoral Commission has been created by the
Constitution as an instrumentality of the Legislative
Department invested with the jurisdiction to decide "all
contests relating to the election, returns, and qualifications of
the members of the National Assembly"; that in adopting its
resolution of December 9, 1935, fixing this date as the last
day for the presentation of protests against the election of
any member of the National Assembly, it acted within its
jurisdiction and in the legitimate exercise of the implied
powers granted it by the Constitution to adopt the rules and
regulations essential to carry out the power and functions
conferred upon the same by the fundamental law; that in
adopting its resolution of January 23, 1936, overruling the
motion of the petitioner to dismiss the election protest in
question, and declaring itself with jurisdiction to take
cognizance of said protest, it acted in the legitimate exercise
of its quasi-judicial functions a an instrumentality of the
Legislative Department of the Commonwealth Government,
and hence said act is beyond the judicial cognizance or
control of the Supreme Court;
(b) That the resolution of the National Assembly of
December 3, 1935, confirming the election of the members
of the National Assembly against whom no protest had thus
far been filed, could not and did not deprive the electoral
Commission of its jurisdiction to take cognizance of election
protests filed within the time that might be set by its own
rules:
(c) That the Electoral Commission is a body invested with
quasi-judicial functions, created by the Constitution as an
instrumentality of the Legislative Department, and is not an
"inferior tribunal, or corporation, or board, or person" within
the purview of section 226 and 516 of the Code of Civil
Procedure, against which prohibition would lie.

The respondent Pedro Ynsua, in his turn, appeared and filed an
answer in his own behalf on March 2, 1936, setting forth the following
as his special defense:
(a) That at the time of the approval of the rules of the
Electoral Commission on December 9, 1935, there was no
existing law fixing the period within which protests against
the election of members of the National Assembly should be
filed; that in fixing December 9, 1935, as the last day for the
filing of protests against the election of members of the
National Assembly, the Electoral Commission was exercising
a power impliedly conferred upon it by the Constitution, by
reason of its quasi-judicial attributes;
(b) That said respondent presented his motion of protest
before the Electoral Commission on December 9, 1935, the
last day fixed by paragraph 6 of the rules of the said
Electoral Commission;
(c) That therefore the Electoral Commission acquired
jurisdiction over the protest filed by said respondent and over
the parties thereto, and the resolution of the Electoral
Commission of January 23, 1936, denying petitioner's
motion to dismiss said protest was an act within the
jurisdiction of the said commission, and is not reviewable by
means of a writ of prohibition;
(d) That neither the law nor the Constitution requires
confirmation by the National Assembly of the election of its
members, and that such confirmation does not operate to
limit the period within which protests should be filed as to
deprive the Electoral Commission of jurisdiction over protest
filed subsequent thereto;

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(e) That the Electoral Commission is an independent entity
created by the Constitution, endowed with quasi-judicial
functions, whose decision are final and unappealable;
( f ) That the electoral Commission, as a constitutional
creation, is not an inferior tribunal, corporation, board or
person, within the terms of sections 226 and 516 of the Code
of Civil Procedure; and that neither under the provisions of
sections 1 and 2 of article II (should be article VIII) of the
Constitution and paragraph 13 of section 1 of the Ordinance
appended thereto could it be subject in the exercise of its
quasi-judicial functions to a writ of prohibition from the
Supreme Court;
(g) That paragraph 6 of article 7 of the Tydings-McDuffie Law
(No. 127 of the 73rd Congress of the united States) has no
application to the case at bar.
The case was argued before us on March 13, 1936. Before it was
submitted for decision, the petitioner prayed for the issuance of a
preliminary writ of injunction against the respondent Electoral
Commission which petition was denied "without passing upon the
merits of the case" by resolution of this court of March 21, 1936.
There was no appearance for the other respondents.
The issues to be decided in the case at bar may be reduced to the
following two principal propositions:
1. Has the Supreme Court jurisdiction over the Electoral
Commission and the subject matter of the controversy upon
the foregoing related facts, and in the affirmative,
2. Has the said Electoral Commission acted without or in
excess of its jurisdiction in assuming to the cognizance of the

protest filed the election of the herein petitioner
notwithstanding the previous confirmation of such election by
resolution of the National Assembly?
We could perhaps dispose of this case by passing directly upon the
merits of the controversy. However, the question of jurisdiction
having been presented, we do not feel justified in evading the issue.
Being a case primæ impressionis, it would hardly be consistent with
our sense of duty to overlook the broader aspect of the question and
leave it undecided. Neither would we be doing justice to the industry
and vehemence of counsel were we not to pass upon the question of
jurisdiction squarely presented to our consideration.
The separation of powers is a fundamental principle in our system of
government. It obtains not through express provision but by actual
division in our Constitution. Each department of the government has
exclusive cognizance of matters within its jurisdiction, and is
supreme within its own sphere. But it does not follow from the fact
that the three powers are to be kept separate and distinct that the
Constitution intended them to be absolutely unrestrained and
independent of each other. The Constitution has provided for an
elaborate system of checks and balances to secure coordination in
the workings of the various departments of the government. For
example, the Chief Executive under our Constitution is so far made a
check on the legislative power that this assent is required in the
enactment of laws. This, however, is subject to the further check that
a bill may become a law notwithstanding the refusal of the President
to approve it, by a vote of two-thirds or three-fourths, as the case
may be, of the National Assembly. The President has also the right to
convene the Assembly in special session whenever he chooses. On
the other hand, the National Assembly operates as a check on the
Executive in the sense that its consent through its Commission on
Appointments is necessary in the appointments of certain officers;
and the concurrence of a majority of all its members is essential to
the conclusion of treaties. Furthermore, in its power to determine

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what courts other than the Supreme Court shall be established, to
define their jurisdiction and to appropriate funds for their support, the
National Assembly controls the judicial department to a certain
extent. The Assembly also exercises the judicial power of trying
impeachments. And the judiciary in turn, with the Supreme Court as
the final arbiter, effectively checks the other departments in the
exercise of its power to determine the law, and hence to declare
executive and legislative acts void if violative of the Constitution.
But in the main, the Constitution has blocked out with deft strokes
and in bold lines, allotment of power to the executive, the legislative
and the judicial departments of the government. The overlapping and
interlacing of functions and duties between the several departments,
however, sometimes makes it hard to say just where the one leaves
off and the other begins. In times of social disquietude or political
excitement, the great landmarks of the Constitution are apt to be
forgotten or marred, if not entirely obliterated. In cases of conflict, the
judicial department is the only constitutional organ which can be
called upon to determine the proper allocation of powers between the
several departments and among the integral or constituent units
thereof.
As any human production, our Constitution is of course lacking
perfection and perfectibility, but as much as it was within the power of
our people, acting through their delegates to so provide, that
instrument which is the expression of their sovereignty however
limited, has established a republican government intended to operate
and function as a harmonious whole, under a system of checks and
balances, and subject to specific limitations and restrictions provided
in the said instrument. The Constitution sets forth in no uncertain
language the restrictions and limitations upon governmental powers
and agencies. If these restrictions and limitations are transcended it
would be inconceivable if the Constitution had not provided for a
mechanism by which to direct the course of government along
constitutional channels, for then the distribution of powers would be

mere verbiage, the bill of rights mere expressions of sentiment, and
the principles of good government mere political apothegms.
Certainly, the limitation and restrictions embodied in our Constitution
are real as they should be in any living constitution. In the United
States where no express constitutional grant is found in their
constitution, the possession of this moderating power of the courts,
not to speak of its historical origin and development there, has been
set at rest by popular acquiescence for a period of more than one
and a half centuries. In our case, this moderating power is granted, if
not expressly, by clear implication from section 2 of article VIII of our
constitution.
The Constitution is a definition of the powers of government. Who is
to determine the nature, scope and extent of such powers? The
Constitution itself has provided for the instrumentality of the judiciary
as the rational way. And when the judiciary mediates to allocate
constitutional boundaries, it does not assert any superiority over the
other departments; it does not in reality nullify or invalidate an act of
the legislature, but only asserts the solemn and sacred obligation
assigned to it by the Constitution to determine conflicting claims of
authority under the Constitution and to establish for the parties in an
actual controversy the rights which that instrument secures and
guarantees to them. This is in truth all that is involved in what is
termed "judicial supremacy" which properly is the power of judicial
review under the Constitution. Even then, this power of judicial
review is limited to actual cases and controversies to be exercised
after full opportunity of argument by the parties, and limited further to
the constitutional question raised or the very lis mota presented. Any
attempt at abstraction could only lead to dialectics and barren legal
questions and to sterile conclusions unrelated to actualities.
Narrowed as its function is in this manner, the judiciary does not pass
upon questions of wisdom, justice or expediency of legislation. More
than that, courts accord the presumption of constitutionality to
legislative enactments, not only because the legislature is presumed
to abide by the Constitution but also because the judiciary in the

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determination of actual cases and controversies must reflect the
wisdom and justice of the people as expressed through their
representatives in the executive and legislative departments of the
governments of the government.
But much as we might postulate on the internal checks of power
provided in our Constitution, it ought not the less to be remembered
that, in the language of James Madison, the system itself is not "the
chief palladium of constitutional liberty . . . the people who are
authors of this blessing must also be its guardians . . . their eyes
must be ever ready to mark, their voice to pronounce . . . aggression
on the authority of their constitution." In the Last and ultimate
analysis, then, must the success of our government in the unfolding
years to come be tested in the crucible of Filipino minds and hearts
than in consultation rooms and court chambers.
In the case at bar, the national Assembly has by resolution (No. 8) of
December 3, 1935, confirmed the election of the herein petitioner to
the said body. On the other hand, the Electoral Commission has by
resolution adopted on December 9, 1935, fixed said date as the last
day for the filing of protests against the election, returns and
qualifications of members of the National Assembly, notwithstanding
the previous confirmation made by the National Assembly as
aforesaid. If, as contended by the petitioner, the resolution of the
National Assembly has the effect of cutting off the power of the
Electoral Commission to entertain protests against the election,
returns and qualifications of members of the National Assembly,
submitted after December 3, 1935, then the resolution of the
Electoral Commission of December 9, 1935, is mere surplusage and
had no effect. But, if, as contended by the respondents, the Electoral
Commission has the sole power of regulating its proceedings to the
exclusion of the National Assembly, then the resolution of December
9, 1935, by which the Electoral Commission fixed said date as the
last day for filing protests against the election, returns and

qualifications of members of the National Assembly, should be
upheld.
Here is then presented an actual controversy involving as it does a
conflict of a grave constitutional nature between the National
Assembly on the one hand, and the Electoral Commission on the
other. From the very nature of the republican government established
in our country in the light of American experience and of our own,
upon the judicial department is thrown the solemn and inescapable
obligation of interpreting the Constitution and defining constitutional
boundaries. The Electoral Commission, as we shall have occasion to
refer hereafter, is a constitutional organ, created for a specific
purpose, namely to determine all contests relating to the election,
returns and qualifications of the members of the National Assembly.
Although the Electoral Commission may not be interfered with, when
and while acting within the limits of its authority, it does not follow that
it is beyond the reach of the constitutional mechanism adopted by
the people and that it is not subject to constitutional restrictions. The
Electoral Commission is not a separate department of the
government, and even if it were, conflicting claims of authority under
the fundamental law between department powers and agencies of
the government are necessarily determined by the judiciary in
justifiable and appropriate cases. Discarding the English type and
other European types of constitutional government, the framers of
our constitution adopted the American type where the written
constitution is interpreted and given effect by the judicial department.
In some countries which have declined to follow the American
example, provisions have been inserted in their constitutions
prohibiting the courts from exercising the power to interpret the
fundamental law. This is taken as a recognition of what otherwise
would be the rule that in the absence of direct prohibition courts are
bound to assume what is logically their function. For instance, the
Constitution of Poland of 1921, expressly provides that courts shall
have no power to examine the validity of statutes (art. 81, chap. IV).
The former Austrian Constitution contained a similar declaration. In

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countries whose constitutions are silent in this respect, courts have
assumed this power. This is true in Norway, Greece, Australia and
South Africa. Whereas, in Czechoslovakia (arts. 2 and 3, Preliminary
Law to constitutional Charter of the Czechoslovak Republic,
February 29, 1920) and Spain (arts. 121-123, Title IX, Constitutional
of the Republic of 1931) especial constitutional courts are
established to pass upon the validity of ordinary laws. In our case,
the nature of the present controversy shows the necessity of a final
constitutional arbiter to determine the conflict of authority between
two agencies created by the Constitution. Were we to decline to take
cognizance of the controversy, who will determine the conflict? And if
the conflict were left undecided and undetermined, would not a void
be thus created in our constitutional system which may be in the long
run prove destructive of the entire framework? To ask these
questions is to answer them. Natura vacuum abhorret, so must we
avoid exhaustion in our constitutional system. Upon principle, reason
and authority, we are clearly of the opinion that upon the admitted
facts of the present case, this court has jurisdiction over the Electoral
Commission and the subject mater of the present controversy for the
purpose of determining the character, scope and extent of the
constitutional grant to the Electoral Commission as "the sole judge of
all contests relating to the election, returns and qualifications of the
members of the National Assembly."
Having disposed of the question of jurisdiction, we shall now proceed
to pass upon the second proposition and determine whether the
Electoral Commission has acted without or in excess of its
jurisdiction in adopting its resolution of December 9, 1935, and in
assuming to take cognizance of the protest filed against the election
of the herein petitioner notwithstanding the previous confirmation
thereof by the National Assembly on December 3, 1935. As able
counsel for the petitioner has pointed out, the issue hinges on the
interpretation of section 4 of Article VI of the Constitution which
provides:

"SEC. 4. There shall be an Electoral Commission composed of three
Justice of the Supreme Court designated by the Chief Justice, and of
six Members chosen by the National Assembly, three of whom shall
be nominated by the party having the largest number of votes, and
three by the party having the second largest number of votes therein.
The senior Justice in the Commission shall be its Chairman. The
Electoral Commission shall be the sole judge of all contests relating
to the election, returns and qualifications of the members of the
National Assembly." It is imperative, therefore, that we delve into the
origin and history of this constitutional provision and inquire into the
intention of its framers and the people who adopted it so that we may
properly appreciate its full meaning, import and significance.
The original provision regarding this subject in the Act of Congress of
July 1, 1902 (sec. 7, par. 5) laying down the rule that "the assembly
shall be the judge of the elections, returns, and qualifications of its
members", was taken from clause 1 of section 5, Article I of the
Constitution of the United States providing that "Each House shall be
the Judge of the Elections, Returns, and Qualifications of its own
Members, . . . ." The Act of Congress of August 29, 1916 (sec. 18,
par. 1) modified this provision by the insertion of the word "sole" as
follows: "That the Senate and House of Representatives,
respectively, shall be the sole judges of the elections, returns, and
qualifications of their elective members . . ." apparently in order to
emphasize the exclusive the Legislative over the particular case s
therein specified. This court has had occasion to characterize this
grant of power to the Philippine Senate and House of
Representatives, respectively, as "full, clear and complete"
(Veloso vs. Boards of Canvassers of Leyte and Samar [1919], 39
Phil., 886, 888.)
The first step towards the creation of an independent tribunal for the
purpose of deciding contested elections to the legislature was taken
by the sub-committee of five appointed by the Committee on
Constitutional Guarantees of the Constitutional Convention, which

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As submitted to the Convention on September 24. The foregoing proposal was submitted by the Committee on Constitutional Guarantees to the Convention on September 15. the tribunal was to be composed of three justices designated by the Supreme Court and six members of the house of the legislature to which the contest corresponds. as well as to initiate impeachment proceedings against specified executive and judicial officer. The idea of creating a Tribunal of Constitutional Security with comprehensive jurisdiction as proposed by the Committee on Constitutional Guarantees which was probably inspired by the Spanish plan (art. and as to its Chairman. reads as follows: The elections. 121. the Commission to be presided over by one of said justices. the following illuminating remarks were made on the floor of the 8 . For the purpose of hearing legislative protests. three elected by the members of the party having the second largest number of votes. The draft as finally submitted to the Convention on October 26. section 5. 1934. Abordo. returns and qualifications of the members of either house and all cases contesting the election of any of their members shall be judged by an Electoral Commission.sub-committee submitted a report on August 30. and others. and three justices of the Supreme Court designated by the Chief Justice. one Justice of the Supreme Court designated by the Chief Justice. and in awarding representation to the executive department in the persons of two representatives to be designated by the President. 1934. composed of three members elected by the party having the largest number of votes in the National Assembly. returns and qualifications of the Members of the National Assembly and all cases contesting the election of any of its Members shall be judged by an Electoral Commission. that is. to be designated as a Electoral Commission. as to each House. and qualifications of the Members". proposing to strike out the whole subsection of the foregoing draft and inserting in lieu thereof the following: "The National Assembly shall be the soled and exclusive judge of the elections. 1934. to be presided over by the Senior Justice unless the Chief Justice is also a member in which case the latter shall preside. three members to be designed by the majority party and three by the minority. Constitution of the Spanish Republic of 1931). three elected by the members of the party having the second largest number of votes. returns. Meanwhile. 1934 subsection 5. recommending the creation of a Tribunal of Constitutional Security empowered to hear legislature but also against the election of executive officers for whose election the vote of the whole nation is required. constituted. the Committee on Legislative Power was also preparing its report. by three members elected by the members of the party having the largest number of votes therein. was soon abandoned in favor of the proposition of the Committee on Legislative Power to create a similar body with reduced powers and with specific and limited jurisdiction. with slight modifications consisting in the reduction of the legislative representation to four members. two senators to be designated one each from the two major parties in the Senate and two representatives to be designated one each from the two major parties in the House of Representatives. The Sponsorship Committee modified the proposal of the Committee on Legislative Power with respect to the composition of the Electoral Commission and made further changes in phraseology to suit the project of adopting a unicameral instead of a bicameral legislature. During the discussion of the amendment introduced by Delegates Labrador. reads as follows: (6) The elections. of the proposed Article on the Legislative Department.

there is no need on the part of the Electoral Commission unless there is a contest. If there is no question about the election of a member. I think Mr. reading: "The elections. we have a doubt here as to the scope of the meaning of the first four lines. 9 . ROXAS. paragraph 6. Mr. unless there is a contest. But does that carry the idea also that the Electoral Commission shall confirm also the election of those whose election is not contested? Mr. After a man files his credentials that he has been elected. It is the same case. or in case the citizenship of the man who has been elected is in question. Then it should be eliminated. as we have observed that for purposes of the auditor. returns and qualifications of the Members of the National Assembly and all cases contesting the election of any of its Members shall be judged by an Electoral Commission. VENTURA. From example. as to the scope of the said draft: xxx xxx xxx Mr. what is the case with regards to the municipal president who is elected? What happens with regards to the councilors of a municipality? Does anybody confirm their election? The municipal council does this: it makes a canvass and proclaims — in this case the municipal council proclaims who has been elected. . Mr. if the assembly desires to annul the power of the commission. it may do so by certain maneuvers upon its first meeting when the returns are submitted to the assembly. Mr. If there is no question about the election of the members. But that is a different matter.Convention in its session of December 4. returns and qualifications of the members. because he will not authorize his pay. The first clause refers to the case referred to by the gentleman from Cavite where one person tries to be elected in place of another who was declared elected. ROXAS. in a case when the residence of the man who has been elected is in question. 1934. Mr. page 11 of the draft. . The purpose is to give to the Electoral Commission all the powers exercised by the assembly referring to the elections. that is sufficient. However. But I do not believe that that is sufficient. there is nothing to be submitted to the Electoral Commission and there is nothing to be determined. Well. ROXAS. As the gentleman knows. Mr. Delegate. Mr. that is why the word "judge" is used to indicate a controversy. and it ends there. President. It is not necessary. VENTURA. When there is no contest. ." I should like to ask from the gentleman from Capiz whether the election and qualification of the member whose elections is not contested shall also be judged by the Electoral Commission. Mr. VENTURA. It is not constitutional. there is nothing to be judged. ROXAS. unless his election is contested. There is no need of confirmation. in the matter of election of a member to a legislative body. the action of the House of Representatives confirming the election of its members is just a matter of the rules of the assembly. there is nothing to be judged. VENTURA.

I do not think so. I have just said that they have no power. President. LABRADOR. because they can only judge. LABRADOR. Mr. So that the Electoral Commission shall decide whether the election is contested or not contested. ROXAS. LABRADOR. PELAYO. Mr. Mr. I have no doubt but that the gentleman is right. Mr. ROXAS. However I want to ask more questions from the delegate from Capiz. ROXAS. will the gentleman yield? THE PRESIDENT." Mr. may not the Electoral Commission. they cannot remove him for that reason. ROXAS. CINCO. Does not the gentleman from Capiz believe that unless this power is granted to the assembly. Mr. ROXAS. I mean with respect to the qualifications of the members. CINCO. LABRADOR. the assembly on its own motion does not have the right to contest the election and qualification of its members? Mr. President. LABRADOR. Mr. he must go to the Electoral Commission and make the question before the Electoral Commission. Yes. If this draft is retained as it is. at its own instance. That is merely for the sake of clarity. Mr. ROXAS. ROXAS. Mr. Under this paragraph. This paragraph 6 on page 11 of the draft cites cases contesting the election as separate from the first part of the sections which refers to elections. The gentleman may yield." This phrase "and contested elections" was inserted merely for the sake of clarity. no member of the assembly has the right to question the eligibility of its members? Mr. Mr. unless there is a protest. if he so desires. I would like to be informed if the Electoral Commission has power and authority to pass upon the qualifications of the members of the National Assembly even though that question has not been raised. 10 . So that under this draft. ROXAS. Mr. I have a similar question as that propounded by the gentleman from Ilocos Norte when I arose a while ago. Mr. refuse to confirm the elections of the members. LABRADOR. returns and qualifications. assembly believe that a member has not the qualifications provided by law. Mr. even if two-thirds of the Mr. Mr. In fact the cases of contested elections are already included in the phrase "the elections. Before a member can question the eligibility. So that the right to remove shall only be retained by the Electoral Commission. Mr. Mr. By the assembly for misconduct. by the Electoral Commission. Mr. sir: that is the purpose. President. Yes. Willingly.Mr. returns and qualifications. ROXAS.

Abordo and others seeking to restore the power to decide contests relating to the election. 1935. CONEJERO. ¿Que dice el Comite? El Sr. As approved on January 31. de modo que los jueces de la Comision Electoral se limitaran solamente a los casos en que haya habido protesta contra las actas. sabiendo que el partidismo no es suficiente para dar el triunfo. ROXAS. ROXAS. so as to accord more representation to the majority party. podriamos hacer que tanto los de la mayoria como los de la minoria prescindieran del partidismo? El Sr. Con mucho gusto. CONEJERO. Lim. Delegate Cruz (C. dando tres miembros a la mayoria. Tal como esta el draft. xxx xxx xxx The amendment introduced by Delegates Labrador. In explaining the difference between the original draft and the draft as amended. the first clause of the aforesaid draft reading "The election. porque el partidismo no les daria el triunfo. xxx Sr. Creemos que si el tribunal o la Commission esta constituido en esa forma. returns and qualifications of the members of the National Assembly" parece que da a la Comision Electoral la facultad de determinar tambien la eleccion de los miembros que no ha sido protestados y para obviar esa dificultad. creemos que la enmienda tien razon en ese sentido.In the same session. y otros tres a la minoria y tres a la Corte Suprema.) sought to amend the draft by reducing the representation of the minority party and the Supreme Court in the Electoral Commission to two members each. quisiera El Sr. 1934. The Convention rejected this amendment by a vote of seventy-six (76) against forty-six (46). In the same session of December 4. consiste solamente en obviar la objecion apuntada por varios Delegados al efecto de que la primera clausula del draft que dice: "The elections. señor Presidente. Si y no." Before the amendment of Delegate Labrador was voted upon the following interpellation also took place: El Sr. returns and qualifications of the members of the National Assembly and" was eliminated by the Sponsorship Committee in response to an amendment introduced by Delegates Francisco. Antes de votarse la enmienda. thus maintaining the nonpartisan character of the commission. ¿no cree Su Señoria que esto equivale El Sr. El Sr. ROXAS. was defeated by a vote of ninety-eight (98) against fifty-six (56). Mumar and others. Delegate Roxas speaking for the Sponsorship Committee said: xxx xxx practicamente a dejar el asunto a los miembros del Tribunal Supremo? El Sr. Creo que si. PRESIDENTE. Vinzons. de tal modo que se lea como sigue: "All cases contesting the election". si enmendamos el draft. ¿Cree Su Señoria que en un caso como ese. La diferencia. Rafols. Ventura. returns and qualifications of members of the National Assembly to the National Assembly itself. CONEJERO. the draft was made to read as follows: 11 . tanto los miembros de la mayoria como los de la minoria asi como los miembros de la Corte Suprema consideraran la cuestion sobre la base de sus meritos. ROXAS.

the Commission to be presided over by one of said justices. and to report their proceedings. The committee of privileges and elections although a select committee was usually what is called an open one. in the form of resolutions.(6) All cases contesting the elections. returns and qualifications of the members of the legislature long lodged in the legislative body. returns and qualifications of the Members of the National Assembly shall be judged by an Electoral Commission. The other mode of proceeding was by a hearing at the bar of the house itself. was denominated the committee of privileges and elections. which were considered and agreed or disagreed to by the house. in his Law and Practice of Legislative Assemblies (ninth edition. and of six Members chosen by the National Assembly. There shall be an Electoral Commission composed of three Justices of the Supreme Court designated by the Chief Justice. and qualifications of the Members of the National Assembly. composed of three members elected by the party having the largest number of votes in the National Assembly. in order to constitute the committee. which was accordingly accepted by the Convention. When the foregoing draft was submitted for approval on February 8. One of the standing committees appointed at the commencement of each session. chapter VI. to effectuate the original intention of the Convention. to an independent. From the time when the commons established their right to be the exclusive judges of the elections. agreed to insert the phrase "All contests relating to" between the phrase "judge of" and the words "the elections". gives a vivid account of the "scandalously notorious" canvassing of votes by political parties in the disposition of contests by the House of Commons in the following passages which are partly quoted by the petitioner in his printed memorandum of March 14. 58). and rights of membership. returns. 4. impartial and non-partisan tribunal. When an election petition was referred to this committee they heard the parties and their witnesses and other evidence. 1935. is by no means a mere experiment in the science of government. the Style Committee. and made a report of all the evidence. The senior Justice in the Commission shall be its chairman. three elected by the members of the party having the second largest number of votes. The Style Committee to which the draft was submitted revised it as follows: SEC. The transfer of the power of determining the election. a quorum of the members named was required to be 12 . pages 57. and three justices of the Supreme Court designated by the Chief Justice. 1936: 153. to the house. that is to say. When this court was adopted. the case was heard and decided by the house. The Electoral Commission shall be the sole judge of the election. and three by the party having the second largest number of votes therein. two modes of proceeding prevailed. together with their opinion thereupon. in substantially the same manner as by a committee. Cushing. returns. until the year 1770. three of whom shall be nominated by the party having the largest number of votes. from time to time. and qualifications of their members. in the determination of controverted elections. through President Recto. The committee of privileges and elections although a select committee. with their opinion thereupon. whose functions was to hear and investigate all questions of this description which might be referred to them.

nay. Sir Robert Walpole. 1770. 1770. undertook to propose a remedy for the evil. and in questions of higher importance to the public welfare. and take upon themselves the partial management of the very business. it is well known. As early as 1868." 155. 125] as amended by Parliamentary Elections and Corrupt Practices 13 . enlist themselves as parties in the contention. and has not been entirely confirmed by subsequent experience. Grenville alluded to the existing practice in the following terms: "Instead of trusting to the merits of their respective causes. and. upon which they should determine with the strictest impartiality. Having proved successful. c. who are ultimately to judge in a kind of judicial capacity between the competitors. that the introduction of the new system was an essential alteration of the constitution of parliament. Mr. This was the celebrated law since known by the name of the Grenville Act. that Mr." Mr. so that for many years previous to the year 1770. may have led many of the contemporaries of the measure to the information of a judgement. Mr. Mr. and Mr. It was to put an end to the practices thus described. who had been clerk of the house. upon which the strength of contending factions might be tested." It is probable. the practice has become imbedded in English jurisprudence (Parliamentary Elections Act. and the security of the constitution. the House of Commons in England solved the problem of insuring the non-partisan settlement of the controverted elections of its members by abdicating its prerogative to two judges of the King's Bench of the High Court of Justice selected from a rota in accordance with rules of court made for the purpose. after repeated attacks upon his government. as conducted under this system.present. and received the royal assent on the 12th of April. Hatsell declares. that was ever devised by any minister or statesman. for the honor of the house of commons. chiefly on the ground. but too successfully. many members of this house. from whence the younger part of the house were insensibly. resigned his office in consequence of an adverse vote upon the Chippenham election. The bill was objected to by Lord North. or returns of members to serve in parliament. and it is scandalously notorious that we are as earnestly canvassed to attend in favor of the opposite sides. "to regulate the trial of controverted elections. De Grey. Thus. on the 7th of March. and a total abrogation of one of the most important rights and jurisdictions of the house of commons. that in every contested election. on the motion for leave. George Grenville. that "Every principle of decency and justice were notoriously and openly prostituted. that it "was one of the nobles works. 154. a distinguished member of the house of commons. of the trial of election cases. as if we were wholly self-elective. or the apparent success of the remedy. but by the discretionary impulse of our own inclinations. as mere party questions. Dyson. which was not acquiesced in by some of the leading statesmen of the day. and not bound to act by the principles of justice. Mr. afterwards chief justice of the common pleas. With the growth of political parties in parliament questions relating to the right of membership gradually assumed a political character. Hatsell remarks. in 1741. that the magnitude of the evil. Charles James Fox." In his speech to explain his plan. 1868 [31 & 32 Vict. Ellis. obtained the unanimous leave of the house to bring in a bill. for Example. Mr. the principal dependence of both parties is their private interest among us. of which Mr. but all the members of the house were at liberty to attend the committee and vote if they pleased. Grenville brought in a bill which met with the approbation of both houses. induced to adopt the same licentious conduct in more serious matters. controverted elections had been tried and determined by the house of commons.

chap. 37. are since 1922 tried in the courts. they deemed it wise to create an Electoral Commission as a constitutional organ and invested it with the exclusive function of passing upon and determining the election. 19) and the Constitution of the Free City of Danzig of May 13. 2. In the Dominion of Canada. who was a member of that body on the part of the Supreme Court (Countryman. as the long-felt need of determining legislative contests devoid of partisan considerations which prompted the people. 6). Congress passed a law on January 29. upon the approval of the constitutional the creation of the Electoral Commission is the expression of the wisdom and "ultimate justice of the people". The decision of the commission was to be binding unless rejected by the two houses voting separately. par. s. Although there is not much of a moral lesson to be derived from the experience of America in this regard.. judging from the observations of Justice Field. returns and qualifications of the members of the National Assembly. 1922 (art. 1877 (United States Statutes at Large. 1920 (art. Expiring Laws Continuance Act. 1879 [42 & 43 Vict. 1861. and five justices of the Supreme Court. The members of the Constitutional Convention who framed our fundamental law were in their majority men mature in years and experience. 1919 (art. 10) vest the authority to decide contested elections to the Diet or National Assembly in the Supreme Court. The creation of an Electoral Commission whose membership is recruited both from the legislature and the judiciary is by no means unknown in the United States. As the Constitution made no adequate provision for such a contingency.Act. election contests which were originally determined by each house. however. the experiment has at least abiding historical interest. In the presidential elections of 1876 there was a dispute as to the number of electoral votes received by each of the two opposing candidates. vol. Notwithstanding the vigorous opposition of some members of the Convention to its creation. was approved by that body by a vote of 98 against 58. election contests which were originally heard by the Committee of the House of Commons. 51. the Supreme Court of the United States and its Appellate Power under the Constitution [Albany. 37. the plan. XII. 1927 (art. to an independent and impartial tribunal. vol. c. acting through their 14 . are since 1922 tried in the High Court. p. The creation of the Electoral Commission was designed to remedy certain evils of which the framers of our Constitution were cognizant. For the purpose of deciding legislative contests. c. all provide for an Electoral Commission. XXI. 43). 1921 (art. In Hungary. Laws of England. as hereinabove stated. p.) From the deliberations of our Constitutional Convention it is evident that the purpose was to transfer in its totality all the powers previously exercised by the legislature in matters pertaining to contested elections of its members. 787). therefore. 19) and the Constitution of the Grecian Republic of June 2. 1883 [46 & 47 Vict. the fifth justice to be selected by the four designated in the Act. the Constitution of the Czechoslovak Republic of February 29. vol. they must have done so not only in the light of their own experience but also having in view the experience of other enlightened peoples of the world. c. Corrupt and Illegal Practices Preventions Act. 31). in the Commonwealth of Australia. All that can be said now is that. Likewise. 227-229). The Constitution of Poland of March 17. It was not so much the knowledge and appreciation of contemporary constitutional precedents. art. 1913] — Relentless Partisanship of Electoral Commission. 408. 75]. 5. First Inaugural Address. the organic law provides that all protests against the election of members of the Upper House of the Diet are to be resolved by the Supreme Administrative Court (Law 22 of 1916. creating a special Electoral Commission composed of five members elected by the Senate. chap. 25 et seq. (Abraham Lincoln. To be sure. 70. 19. pp. five members elected by the House of Representatives.). When . 1911 [1 & 2 Geo. March 4. 22]. s. the Constitution of the German Reich of July 1. 2. p. many of them were familiar with the history and political development of other countries of the world.

A.D.. 1. The power to regulate on the part of the National Assembly in procedural matters will inevitably lead to the ultimate control by the Assembly of the entire proceedings of the Electoral Commission..R. It is. Rep. Constitutional Limitations. an independent organ. But it is a body separate from and independent of the legislature. and further endowed with judicial temper by including in its membership three justices of the Supreme Court. invested with the necessary authority in the performance and execution of the limited and specific function assigned to it by the Constitution. It is a settled rule of construction that where a general power is conferred or duty enjoined. vol. State vs. L. A sad spectacle would then be presented of the Electoral Commission retaining the bare authority of taking cognizance of cases referred to. but in reality without the necessary means to render that authority effective whenever and whenever the National Assembly has chosen to act. to avoid what he characterized would be practically an unlimited power of the commission in the admission of protests against members of the National Assembly. Its compositions is also significant in that it is constituted by a majority of members of the legislature.. The Electoral Commission is a constitutional creation. to all intents and purposes. to be sure. the grant of power to the commission would be ineffective. If we concede the power claimed in behalf of the National Assembly that said body may regulate the proceedings of the Electoral Commission and cut off the power of the commission to lay down the period within which protests should be filed. returns and qualifications of the members of the National Assembly but subject at all times to the regulative power of the National Assembly.Whisman. Although it is not a power in our tripartite scheme of government. It is obvious that this result should not be permitted. a situation worse than that intended to be remedied by the framers of our Constitution. 138. But as we have pointed out hereinabove. With this end in view. returns and qualifications of members of the National Assembly. a composite body in which both the majority and minority parties are equally represented to off-set partisan influence in its deliberations was created. I.delegates to the Convention. pp. by indirection. to provide for this body known as the Electoral Commission. closer to the legislative department than to any other. is intended to be as complete and unimpaired as if it had remained originally in the legislature. The Electoral Commission in such case would be invested with the power to determine contested cases involving the election. Not only would the purpose of the framers of our Constitution of totally transferring this authority from the legislative body be frustrated. 1). therefore. and. the incidental power to promulgate such 15 . 139).. The express lodging of that power in the Electoral Commission is an implied denial of the exercise of that power by the National Assembly. it is. to the entire abrogation of the constitutional grant. The grant of power to the Electoral Commission to judge all contests relating to the election. eight ed. 1917B. We are not insensible to the impassioned argument or the learned counsel for the petitioner regarding the importance and necessity of respecting the dignity and independence of the national Assembly as a coordinate department of the government and of according validity to its acts. Crim. every particular power necessary for the exercise of the one or the performance of the other is also conferred (Cooley. but a dual authority would be created with the resultant inevitable clash of powers from time to time. 45 Tex. 36 S. In the absence of any further constitutional provision relating to the procedure to be followed in filing protests before the Electoral Commission. the creation of the Electoral Commission carried with it ex necesitate rei the power regulative in character to limit the time with which protests intrusted to its cognizance should be filed. And this is as effective a restriction upon the legislative power as an express prohibition in the Constitution (Ex parte Lewis. 260. when acting within the limits of its authority. The location of the provision (section 4) creating the Electoral Commission under Article VI entitled "Legislative Department" of our Constitution is very indicative.

must be deemed by necessary implication to have been lodged also in the Electoral Commission. on which date the Constitution. 1935. neither does it appear that said body had actually been organized. the result would be that the National Assembly — on the hypothesis that it still retained the incidental power of regulation in such cases — had already barred the presentation of protests before the Electoral Commission had had time to organize itself and deliberate on the mode and method to be followed in a matter entrusted to its exclusive jurisdiction by the Constitution. may not be challenge in appropriate cases over which the courts may exercise jurisdiction. to the disturbance of the tranquillity and peace of mind of the members of the National Assembly. The Commonwealth Government was inaugurated on November 15. and must be sought through the ordinary processes of democracy. the Electoral Commission had not yet met. returns. as they have given to the Supreme Court in the proper cases entrusted to it for decision. That the actuations of these constitutional agencies might leave much to be desired in given instances. Jose A. When. the Electoral Commission may abuse its regulative authority by admitting protests beyond any reasonable time. 8 of the National Assembly confirming non-protested elections of members of the National Assembly had the effect of limiting or tolling the time for the presentation of protests. We believe. the remedy is political. however. Angara was approved by that body on December 3. It is. The new National Assembly convened on November 25th of that year. returns and qualifications of members of the National Assembly. is inherent in the perfection of human institutions. But independently of the legal and constitutional aspects of the present case. went into effect. 1935. and qualifications of members of the National Assembly. except as to the provisions mentioned in section 6 of Article XV thereof. The protest by the herein respondent Pedro Ynsua against the election of the petitioner was filed on December 9 of the same year. therefore. that the people in creating the Electoral Commission reposed as much confidence in this body in the exclusive determination of the specified cases assigned to it. it does not follow that its acts. the three justices of the Supreme Court the six members of the National Assembly constituting the Electoral Commission were respectively designated only on December 4 and 6. according to certified copies of official records on file in the archives division of the National Assembly attached to the record of this case upon the petition of the petitioner. from the fact that the Electoral Commission may not be interfered with in the exercise of its legitimate power. the Electoral Commission met for the first time and approved a resolution fixing said date as the last day for the filing of election protest. the National Assembly passed its resolution of December 3. if any mistake has been committed in the creation of an Electoral Commission and in investing it with exclusive jurisdiction in all cases relating to the election. and each constitutional organ working within its own particular sphere of discretionary action must be deemed to be animated with the same zeal and honesty in accomplishing the great ends for which they were created by the sovereign will. In the third place. All the possible abuses of the government are not intended to be corrected by the judiciary. If Resolution No. confirming the election of the petitioner to the National Assembly. however illegal or unconstitutional. as suggested by counsel for the petitioner. 1935. indeed. 1935. As a mater of fact. and should be avoided. The pleadings do not show when the Electoral Commission was formally organized but it does appear that on December 9. 1935. there are considerations of equitable character that should not be overlooked in the appreciation of the intrinsic merits of the controversy. All the agencies of the government were designed by the Constitution to achieve specific purposes. not judicial. 16 . possible that. and the resolution confirming the election of the petitioner. In the second place. But the possibility of abuse is not argument against the concession of the power as there is no power that is not susceptible of abuse.rules necessary for the proper exercise of its exclusive power to judge all contests relating to the election. This result was not and could not have been contemplated.

Resolution No. pp. the order or decision of the particular house itself is generally regarded as sufficient. Law and Practice of Legislative Assemblies. Record — First Period. can not be construed as a limitation upon the time for the initiation of election contests. Confirmation is in order only in cases of contested elections where the decision is adverse to the claims of the protestant. p. certification by the proper provincial board of canvassers is sufficient to entitle a member-elect to a seat in the national Assembly and to render him eligible to any office in said body (No. upon being informed of such certificate or report by the Speaker. Cebu]. as well as by a law (sec. vol. adopted December 6. c. In England. As a matter of fact. No.. Record — First Period. or for the issue of a writ for a new election. return and qualifications of its members. vol. Title 2. section 478. unnecessary. 56. 25. 1121. 21. C. 89. 694. 331. Rama [Third District. Aldanese [Fourth District. Claravall [Isabela]. 893). The return of the proper election officers is sufficient. 125. pp. U. III. confirmation is neither necessary in order to entitle a member-elect to take his seat. par. 1. Record — First Period. overruling the motion of the herein petitioner to dismiss the protest filed by the respondent Pedro Ynsua. and the House. S. 1935). after the time fixed by its rules for the filing of protests had already expired. to all legal purposes. sec. 26). confirmation alone by the legislature cannot be construed as depriving the Electoral Commission of the authority incidental to its constitutional power to be "the sole judge of all contest relating to the election. each house of the Philippine Legislature fixed the time when protests against the election of any of its members should be filed. 8 of the National Assembly confirming the election of members against whom no protests had been filed at the time of its passage on December 3. Under the practice prevailing when the Jones Law was still in force. 17 . and the memberelect presenting such return begins to enjoy the privileges of a member from the time that he takes his oath of office (Laws of England. Cebu]. 637-640. Confirmation by the National Assembly of the returns of its members against whose election no protests have been filed is. 13). 695. to fix the time for the filing of said election protests. pp. returns. Sixth Philippine Legislature. and qualifications of the members of the National Assembly". 3387) empowering each house to respectively prescribe by resolution the time and manner of filing contest in the election of member of said bodies. without any actual alternation or amendment of the return (Cushing. Fetalvero vs. Aguilar vs. 478. pp.. Record — First Period. 1936. secs. 9th ed.From another angle. 3387. it is believed. This was expressly authorized by section 18 of the Jones Law making each house the sole judge of the election. is required to enter the same upon the Journals. Act No. Act No. Sixth Philippine Legislature. 1. 332. 12. confirmation of the election of any member is not required by the Constitution before he can discharge his duties as such member. vol. Under the practice prevailing both in the English House of Commons and in the Congress of the United States. As contended by the Electoral Commission in its resolution of January 23. This was interpreted as cutting off the filing of further protests against the election of those members not theretofore contested (Amistad vs. or for carrying into execution the determination as circumstances may require (31 & 32 Vict. pp. 166).. A. Corpus [Masbate]. In the United States. 21. 1935. Kintanar vs. 1122. 892. The Constitution has repealed section 18 of the Jones Law. each house passed a resolution confirming or approving the returns of such members against whose election no protests had been filed within the prescribed time. While there might have been good reason for the legislative practice of confirmation of the election of members of the legislature at the time when the power to decide election contests was still lodged in the legislature. Sixth Philippine Legislature. Rules of the National Assembly. and to give such directions for confirming or altering the return. As a matter of formality. Urguello vs. the judges' decision or report in controverted elections is certified to the Speaker of the House of Commons. Second Philippine Legislature. Eighth Philippine Legislature. sec. Festin [Romblon].

And what the National Assembly could not do directly. ( j) That the avowed purpose in creating the Electoral Commission was to have an independent constitutional organ pass upon all contests relating to the election. and qualifications of their elective members. we conclude: (a) That the government established by the Constitution follows fundamentally the theory of separation of power into the legislative. as it is alleged to have fixed on December 3. (f ) That the Electoral Commission is the sole judge of all contests relating to the election. it could not do by indirection through the medium of confirmation. the executive and the judicial. returns and qualifications of members of the National Assembly. to the Electoral Commission. devoid of partisan influence or consideration. There was thus no law nor constitutional provisions which authorized the National Assembly to fix. is inseparably linked the authority to prescribe regulations for the exercise of that power. the time for the filing of contests against the election of its members. closer for purposes of classification to the legislative than to any of the other two departments of the governments. (g) That under the organic law prevailing before the present Constitution went into effect. (d) That judicial supremacy is but the power of judicial review in actual and appropriate cases and controversies. the judiciary.must be deemed to have been impliedly abrogated also. which object would be frustrated if the National Assembly were to retain the power to prescribe rules and regulations regarding the manner of conducting said contests. and is the power and duty to see that no one branch or agency of the government transcends the Constitution. (h) That the present Constitution has transferred all the powers previously exercised by the legislature with respect to contests relating to the elections. (c) That in cases of conflict between the several departments and among the agencies thereof. (b) That the system of checks and balances and the overlapping of functions and duties often makes difficult the delimitation of the powers granted. (e) That the Electoral Commission is an independent constitutional creation with specific powers and functions to (k) That section 4 of article VI of the Constitution repealed not only section 18 of the Jones Law making each house of 18 . execute and perform. for the reason that with the power to determine all contest relating to the election. clear and complete. (i) That such transfer of power from the legislature to the Electoral Commission was full. returns and qualifications of members of the National Assembly. each house of the legislature was respectively the sole judge of the elections. Summarizing. returns and qualifications of members of the National Assembly. returns and qualifications of its members. 1935. is the only constitutional mechanism devised finally to resolve the conflict and allocate constitutional boundaries. and carried with it ex necesitate rei the implied power inter alia to prescribe the rules and regulations as to the time and manner of filing protests. returns. with the Supreme Court as the final arbiter. which is the source of all authority.

to be required.. with costs against the petitioner. The petition for a writ of prohibition against the Electoral Commission is hereby denied. does not and cannot deprive the Electoral Commission of its incidental power to prescribe the time within which protests against the election of any member of the National Assembly should be filed. S. and judicial. 33 Law. Loney. executive. 13 Pet. Electoral Commission is an inferior tribunal. Separate Opinions ABAD SANTOS. 949. and qualifications of the members of the National Assembly. but also section 478 of Act No. Angara. the power to regulate the time in which notice of a contested election may be 19 . 134 U. So ordered. therefore. J. is judicial in nature.. ed.. that the Electoral Commission was acting within the legitimate exercise of its constitutional prerogative in assuming to take cognizance of the protest filed by the respondent Pedro Ynsua against the election of the herein petitioner Jose A. 200 U. Legislative power is vested in the National Assembly. Avanceña. corporation. (l) That confirmation by the National Assembly of the election is contested or not. sec. JJ.. 3387 empowering each house to prescribe by resolution the time and manner of filing contests against the election of its members. if any. 572. Cohen. 50 Law. 177. the power to regulate the time in which notice of a contested election may be given.. I am. The power vested in the Electoral Commission by the Constitution of judging of all contests relating to the election. Illinois. Concepcion. board or person within the purview of sections 226 and 516 of the Code of Civil Procedure. concur. the time and manner of notifying the adverse party.) In the absence of any clear constitutional provision to the contrary. Diaz. (Thomas vs. and Horrilleno. and to fix the costs and expenses of contest.the Philippine Legislature respectively the sole judge of the elections. Missouri vs. nor prevent the filing of a protest within such time as the rules of the Electoral Commission might prescribe. 951. (M'Elmoyle vs. 312. and bond or bonds. 10 Law..) It has been correctly stated that the government established by the Constitution follows fundamentally the theory of the separation of powers into legislative.S. however. returns and qualifications of its elective members. ed.. (Article VI. In view of the conclusion reached by us relative to the character of the Electoral Commission as a constitutional creation and as to the scope and extent of its authority under the facts of the present controversy. returns and qualifications of members of the National Assembly.) On the other hand.. concurring: (m) That confirmation by the National Assembly of the election of any member against whom no protest had been filed prior to said confirmation. is legislative in character. C. we deem it unnecessary to determine whether the I concur in the result and in most of the views so ably expressed in the preceding opinion. and that the resolution of the National Assembly of December 3. 1. is not essential before such memberelect may discharge the duties and enjoy the privileges of a member of the National Assembly. returns. 372. 496. ed. We hold. 1935 can not in any manner toll the time for filing protests against the elections. J. constrained to withhold my assent to certain conclusions therein advanced.

to refer to the Government and corresponding officials under this Constitution. the Philippine Legislature passed the Election Law.) The Philippine Autonomy Act. section 5. give notice. returns. or repealed by the National Assembly. and shall fix the costs and expenses of contest which may be paid from their respective funds. unless inconsistent with the Constitution. S. of the United States Code Annotated prescribes: Whenever any person intends to contest an election of any Member of the House of Representatives of the United States. section 4. Notwithstanding this provision. of the Constitution of the Philippines. but to insure the determination of such contests with the due process of law. unless inconsistent with this Constitution. until amended. It was thus provided that all laws of the Philippine Islands shall remain operative even after the inauguration of the Commonwealth of the Philippines. (R. must be deemed to be included in the grant of legislative power to the National Assembly. modified. of his intention to contest the same. of the Constitution of the United States provides that each house of the Congress shall be the judge of the elections. and bond or bonds. in so far as applicable. 105. section 2. and to prevent any hiatus in its operations after the inauguration of the Commonwealth of the Philippines. to the Member whose seat he designs to contest. the Congress has assumed the power to regulate the time in which notice of a contested election may be given. and qualifications of their elective members. to refer to the government and corresponding officials under the Constitution. and qualifications of its own members. in such notice. shall specify particularly the grounds upon which he relies in the contest. if any. section 478 of which reads as follows: The Senate and the House of Representatives shall by resolution respectively prescribe the time and manner of filing contest in the election of members of said bodies. thereafter.. Section 478 of the Election Law was in force at the time of the adoption of the Constitution. and all references in such laws to the Government or officials of the Philippine Islands shall be construed. It would seem to be consistent not only with the spirit but the letter of the Constitution to hold that section 478 of 20 . also contained a provision to the effect that the Senate and House of Representatives. altered. but to raise legislative elections contests from the category of political to that of justiciable questions. Article I. The purpose was not to place the commission beyond the reach of the law. in so far as applicable. and that all references in such laws to the government or officials of the Philippine Islands shall be construed. shall be the sole judges of the elections. Notwithstanding this provision. to be required. Title 2. Article XV. such laws shall remain operative. The purpose sought to be attained by the creation of the Electoral Commission was not to erect a body that would be above the law. within thirty days after the result of such election shall have been determined by the officer or board of canvassers authorized by law to determine the same. The manifest purpose of this constitutional provision was to insure the orderly processes of government. The Constitution of the United States contains a provision similar to the that found in Article VI. Thus section 201.given. of which provides that — All laws of the Philippine Islands shall continue in force until the inauguration of the Commonwealth of the Philippines. returns. in writing. respectively. par. otherwise known as the Jones Law. he shall. the time and manner of notifying the adverse party. and.

In the light of what has been said. which is now the body clothed with power to decide such contests. 1935. could not have the effect of barring the right of the respondent Pedro Ynsua to contest the election of the petitioner. of the Constitution. the resolution of the National Assembly of December 3. the Electoral Commission was authorized by law to adopt its resolution of December 9. Construing section 478 of the Election Law to refer to the National Assembly. Having been filed within the time fixed by its resolutions. as required by Article XV. Angara. it seems reasonable to conclude that the authority to prescribe the time and manner of filing contests in the election of members of the National Assembly is vested in the Electoral Commission. the Electoral Commission has jurisdiction to hear and determine the contest filed by the respondent Pedro Ynsua against the petitioner Jose A. section 2. In other words. which fixed the time with in which written contests must be filed with the commission. the authority to prescribe the time and manner of filing contests in the elections of members of the Philippine Legislature was by statute lodged separately in the bodies clothed with power to decide such contests.the Election Law remains operative and should now be construed to refer to the Electoral Commission. It is important to observe in this connection that said section 478 of the Election Law vested the power to regulate the time and manner in which notice of a contested election may be given. By the same token. which. EN BANC 21 . corresponds to either the Senate or the House of Representative under the former regime. not in the Philippine Legislature but in the Senate and House of Representatives singly. in so far as the power to judge election contests is concerned. 1935.

7854 is unconstitutional for: (a) it increased the legislative district of Makati only by special law (the Charter in violation of the constitutional provision requiring a general reapportionment law to be passed by Congress within three (3) years following the return of every census. 7854 attempts to alter or restart the "three consecutive term" limit for local elective officials. G. 118627 March 7. vs. they assail as 1.A. MUNICIPAL TREASURER. Article VI of the Constitution for as of the latest 22 . No. in relation to Sections 7 and 450 of the Local Government Code. Section 51 of R.R. Bautista. Ligaya S. No. 7854 is entitled. No. No. PUNO. THE COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS.. Section 2 of R. Rufino Caldoza. R. Article VI of the Constitution. It was filed by petitioners Juanito Mariano.R. 1995 JUANITO MARIANO. and 52 of R. THE MUNICIPALITY OF MAKATI. JR.unconstitutional sections 2. Jr. Teresita Tibay.: At bench are two (2) petitions assailing certain provisions of Republic Act No. JEJOMAR BINAY. vs. 51. in violation of Section 10. AND SANGGUNIANG BAYAN OF MAKATI.R. Article X of the Constitution. No. respondents. Section 52 of R. J. 2. 118577 involves a petition for prohibition and declaratory relief. THE MUNICIPAL TREASURER. Jr. Taguig. (b) the increase in legislative district was not expressed in the title of the bill. Ricardo Pascual. 7854 as unconstitutional. R. Article X and Section 7. Florante Alba. HON. 3. No. respondents. et al. Metro Manila.A. 7854 on the following grounds: G.A. Teresita Abang. No." 1 G. petitioners. in violation of Section 8. and Perfecto Alba. 1995 JOHN R. only Mariano. AND SANGGUNIANG BAYAN OF MAKATI. Valentina Pitalvero.A.A.. with technical descriptions. 7854 did not properly identify the land area or territorial jurisdiction of Makati by metes and bounds. No. 7854 as unconstitutional. The others are residents of Ibayo Ususan. OSMEÑA.A. petitioner.. and (c) the addition of another legislative district in Makati is not in accord with Section 5 (3). JEJOMAR BINAY. is a resident of Makati. "An Act Converting the Municipality of Makati Into a Highly Urbanized City to be known as the City of Makati. Camilo Santos. THE COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS. Of the petitioners. Suing as taxpayers. Frankie Cruz. HON. 118577 March 7. No. THE MUNICIPALITY OF MAKATI.

The City of Makati. No. G. 7854. hereinafter referred to as the City. petitioners claim that this delineation violates sections 7 and 450 of the Local Government Code which require that the area of a local government unit should be made by metes and bounds with technical descriptions.A. We find no merit in the petitions. At the time of the consideration of R.000. or multiply the established land area of Makati. No. on the southeast by the municipalities of Pateros and Taguig. with technical descriptions. with technical descriptions. divide. on the northwest. 2 The importance of drawing with precise strokes the territorial boundaries of a local unit of government cannot be overemphasized. subtract. 118577. No.A. the population of Makati stands at only 450. the territorial dispute between 23 . No. Petitioner assails section 52 of R. by the City of Manila. section 2 stated that. Article I of R." The deliberations of Congress will reveal that there is a legitimate reason why the land area of the proposed City of Makati was not defined by metes and bounds. Petitioners have not demonstrated that the delineation of the land area of the proposed City of Makati will cause confusion as to its boundaries. The boundaries must be clear for they define the limits of the territorial jurisdiction of a local government unit. No. Osmeña as senator. No. Needless to state. 118627 was filed by the petitioner John H. (Emphasis supplied) In G. The foregoing provision shall be without prejudice to the resolution by the appropriate agency or forum of existing boundary disputes or cases involving questions of territorial jurisdiction between the City of Makati and the adjoining local government units. 2. 7854 as unconstitutional on the same grounds as aforestated. thus: Sec.survey (1990 census). Section 2 did not add. In language that cannot be any clearer. 7854 delineated the land areas of the proposed city of Makati. It can legitimately exercise powers of government only within the limits. 7854.A. Given the facts of the cases at bench. any uncertainty in the boundaries of local government units will sow costly conflicts in the exercise of governmental powers which ultimately will prejudice the people's welfare. on the southwest by the City of Pasay and the Municipality of Taguig. This is the evil sought to avoided by the Local Government Code in requiring that the land area of a local government unit must be spelled out in metes and bounds. and concerned citizen. its acts are ultra vires. taxpayer.A. and. we cannot perceive how this evil can be brought about by the description made in section 2 of R. We note that said delineation did not change even by an inch the land area previously covered by Makati as a municipality.R. which shall comprise the present territory of the Municipality of Makati in Metropolitan Manila Area over which it has jurisdiction bounded on the northeast by Pasig River and beyond by the City of Mandaluyong and the Municipality of Pasig. I Section 2. the city's land area "shall comprise the present territory of the municipality. — The Municipality of Makati shall be converted into a highly urbanized city to be known as the City of Makati.R.

33 SCRA 1105). 56 Phil.A. Hidalgo v. we are not prepared to hold that section 2 of R. Congress did not intends that laws creating new cities must contain therein detailed technical descriptions similar to those appearing in Torrens titles. made them subject to the ultimate resolution by the courts. 7854 is unconstitutional. Ergo. To invalidate R. This could not be the intendment of the law. instead of the other way around. They did not want to foreclose the dispute by making a legislative finding of fact which could decide the issue. In other words. To require such description in the law as a condition sine qua non for its validity would be to defeat the very purpose which the Local Government Code to seeks to serve.: Going now to Sections 7 and 450 of the Local Government Code. It then becomes a case of the master serving the slave. In the cases at bench. The manifest intent of the Code is to empower local government units and to give them their rightful due. although it may not be consistent with the strict letter of the statute.A. Too well settled is the rule that laws must be enforced when ascertained. Cuenco. legislators felt that the dispute should be left to the courts to decide. Limjap. We sustain the submission of the Solicitor General in this regard. which. This would have ensued if they defined the land area of the proposed city by its exact metes and bounds.. 4 We hold that the existence of a boundary dispute does not per se present an insurmountable difficulty which will prevent Congress from defining with reasonable certitude the territorial jurisdiction of a local government unit.: "the territorial jurisdiction of newly created or converted cities should be described by meted and bounds. No. viz. 103 Phil. Considering these peculiar circumstances. it may be concluded that the legislative intent behind the law has been sufficiently served. No. with technical descriptions. (Torres v. Certainly. 3 We take judicial notice of the fact that Congress has also refrained from using the metes and bounds description of land areas of other local government units with unsettled boundary disputes.the municipalities of Makati and Taguig over Fort Bonifacio was under court litigation. It seeks to make local governments more responsive to the needs of their constituents while at the same time serving as a vital cog in national development. with technical descriptions" — was made in order to provide a means by which the area of said cities may be reasonably ascertained. Out of a becoming sense of respect to co-equal department of government. it is beyond cavil that the requirement stated therein. by referring to common boundaries with neighboring municipalities. as petitioners seem to imply. for purposes of interpretation. so long as the territorial jurisdiction of a city may be reasonably ascertained. 141. 7854 on the mere ground that no cadastral type of description was used in the law would serve the letter but defeat the spirit of the Code. Tañada v. Congress maintained the existing boundaries of the proposed City of Makati but as an act of fairness. Courts will not follow the letter of the statute when to do so would depart from the true intent of the legislature or would otherwise yield conclusions inconsistent with the general purpose of the act. i. Legislation is an active instrument of government. then.e. 1051. as in this case. viz. means that laws have 24 . the requirement on metes and bounds was meant merely as tool in the establishment of local government units. It is not an end in itself.. Hidalgo.

The same rule must indubitably apply to the case at bar. The requirements before a litigant can challenge the constitutionality of a law are well delineated. xxx xxx xxx Sec. he can still run for the same position in 1998 and seek another three-year consecutive term since his previous three-year consecutive term as municipal mayorwould not be counted. They are: 1) there must 25 . Article VI of the Constitution which provide: Sec. Article X of R.A. at noon on the thirtieth day of June next following their election. Article X and section 7. No. Thus. which shall be determined by law. No. The appointive officials and employees of the City shall likewise continues exercising their functions and duties and they shall be automatically absorbed by the city government of the City of Makati. and statutes should be so construed as not to defeat but to carry out such ends and purposes (Bocolbo v. 7854. including Members of the House of Representative. Voluntary renunciation of the office for any length of time shall not be considered as an interruption in the continuity of his service for the full term for which he was elected. No. The term of office of elective local officials. have a term of three (3) years and are prohibited from serving for more than three (3) consecutive terms.ends to achieve. except barangay officials. Voluntary renunciation of the office for any length of time shall not be considered as an interruption in the continuity of his service for the full term for which he was elected. petitioners conclude that said section 51 has been conveniently crafted to suit the political ambitions of respondent Mayor Binay. 8. Estanislao. Officials of the City of Makati. respondent Jejomar Binay. 51. The new city will acquire a new corporate existence. 118577 also assail the constitutionality of section 51. 72 SCRA 520). We cannot entertain this challenge to the constitutionality of section 51. The Members of the House of Representatives shall be elected for a term of three years which shall begin. — The represent elective officials of the Municipality of Makati shall continue as the officials of the City of Makati and shall exercise their powers and functions until such time that a new election is held and the duly elected officials shall have already qualified and assume their offices: Provided. No Member of the House of Representatives shall serve for more than three consecutive terms. who has already served for two (2) consecutive terms. Section 51 states: Sec. In particular. unless otherwise provided by law. II Petitioners in G. 7. petitioners point that section 51 favors the incumbent Makati Mayor. Petitioners stress that under these provisions. 7854 restarts the term of the present municipal elective officials of Makati and disregards the terms previously served by them. They argue that by providing that the new city shall acquire a new corporate existence. elective local officials. shall be three years and no such official shall serve for more than three consecutive terms.A. section 51 of R. They further argue that should Mayor Binay decide to run and eventually win as city mayor in the coming elections.R. They contend that this section collides with section 8.

that a city with a population of at least two hundred fifty thousand (250. other than a general reapportionment of the law. Worse. they hoist this futuristic issue in a petition for declaratory relief over which this Court has no jurisdiction.000). 11 Sovereignty cannot admit of any kind of subtraction. unless otherwise fixed by law.000) shall have at least one representative. (2) the addition of a legislative district is not expressed in the title of the bill 7 and (3) Makati's population. It is indivisible. and (4) the decision on the constitutional question must be necessary to the determination of the case itself. Considering that these contingencies may or may not happen. Petitioners who are residents of Taguig (except Mariano) are not also the proper parties to raise this abstract issue. stands at only four hundred fifty thousand (450. 7854. The petition is premised on the occurrence of many contingent events.000). (emphasis supplied) They contend. in lieu of Barangay Guadalupe-Viejo which shall form part of the second district.e. petitioners in the two (2) cases at bench assail the constitutionality of section 52. As thus worded.A. to hold that reapportionment can only be made through a general apportionment law. 8 In said case. section 3 of the Ordinance appended to the Constitution provides that a city whose population has increased to more than two 26 . (3) the constitutional question must be raised at the earliest possible opportunity. In fact. its legislative district may still be increased since it has met the minimum population requirement of two hundred fifty thousand (250. as per the 1990 census. — Upon its conversion into a highly-urbanized city. that Mayor Binay will run again in this coming mayoralty elections. These issues have been laid to rest in the recent case of Tobias v. 5 Petitioners have far from complied with these requirements. Abalos. the Constitution did not preclude Congress from increasing its membership by passing a law. III Finally. The Constitution 9 clearly provides that Congress shall be composed of not more than two hundred fifty (250) members. the population of Makati stands at only four hundred fifty thousand (450. Dasmariñas and Forbes shall be with the first district. 10 The intolerable situations will deprive the people of a new city or province a particle of their sovereignty. (2) the question of constitutionality must be raised by the proper party. i. No.000). Legislative Districts. 13 Said section provides. Even granting that the population of Makati as of the 1990 census stood at four hundred fifty thousand (450. This is its exactly what was done by Congress in enacting R. with a review of all the legislative districts allotted to each local government unit nationwide. such as in the charter of a new city. Petitioners cannot insist that the addition of another legislative district in Makati is not in accord with section 5(3). Makati shall thereafter have at least two (2) legislative districts that shall initially correspond to the two (2) existing districts created under Section 3(a) of Republic Act. barangays Magallanes. 7854 and providing for an increase in Makati's legislative district. petitioners merely pose a hypothetical issue which has yet to ripen to an actual case or controversy.A. No. 52. Henceforth. and that he would seek re-election for the same position in the 1998 elections. inter alia. Section 52 of the Charter provides: Sec. Article X of R. No. that he would be re-elected in said elections. would create an inequitable situation where a new city or province created by Congress will be denied legislative representation for an indeterminate period of time. It must be forever whole or it is not sovereignty. Moreover.be an actual case or controversy.. we ruled that reapportionment of legislative districts may be made through a special law. that the addition of another legislative district in Makati is unconstitutional for: (1) reapportionment 6cannot made by a special law. 7166 as implemented by the Commission on Elections to commence at the next national elections to be held after the effectivity of this Act.000). Article VI 12 of the Constitution for as of the latest survey (1990 census).

JJ.A. Narvasa.A.A. . Vitug. with Constitution does not command that the title of a law should exactly mirror. In the same case of Tobias v. Hence. Padilla. Puno.hundred fifty thousand (250.A. Mendoza and Francisco. with the criteria established in the local government code and subject to the approval by a majority of the votes cast in a plebiscite in the political units directly affected. JR. Romero. Abalos. as a matter of fact.. — (a) A municipality or a cluster of barangays may be converted into a component city if it has an average annual income. fully index. we ruled that "it should be sufficient compliance if the title expresses the general subject and all the provisions are germane to such general subject. Melo. divided. Feliciano. Bidin. No. we do not find merit in petitioners' contention that the creation of an additional legislative district in Makati should have been expressly stated in the title of the bill.A. xxx xxx xxx Section 10. To be sure." These criteria are now set forth in Section 7 of the Local Government Code of 1991 (R. 7854 (An Act Converting the Municipality of Makati Into a Highly Urbanized City to be Known as the City of Makati) to describe the territorial boundaries of the city by metes and bounds does not make R. The omission of R. concur. One of these is that the territorial jurisdiction of the local government unit to be created or converted should be properly identified by metes and bounds with technical descriptions. No. 7160).000. concurring: I concur in the well written opinion of Mr. not a highly urbanized city.000) shall be entitled to at least one congressional representative. or its boundary substantially altered. Article X of the Constitution provides that "[n]o province. to add a few observations.00) for the last two (2) consecutive years based on 1991 constant prices. for. op cit. we reiterated the policy of the Court favoring a liberal construction of the "one title-one subject" rule so as not to impede legislation. the petitions are hereby DISMISSED for lack of merit No costs. 7160 is unavailing Said section only applies to the conversion of a municipality or a cluster of barangays into a COMPONENT CITY. No. 450. Separate Opinions DAVIDE. . except in accordance (b) The territorial jurisdiction of a newly created city shall be properly identified by metes and bounds. Quiason... . however. It pertinently reads as follows: Sec. 7854 unconstitutional or illegal." WHEREFORE. abolished. Justice Reynato S. of at least Twenty million pesos (P20.000. SO ORDERED. Regalado. Bellosillo. and if it has either of the following requisites: I.J. Kapunan. The Constitution does not provide for a description by metes and bounds as a condition sine qua non for the creation of a local government unit or its conversion from one level to another. the section starts with the clause "as a general rule. 27 . No. J.. city. C. I wish. municipality or barangay may be created. 7854 are not absolute. No. merged." The petitioners' reliance on Section 450 of R. Requisite for creation. as certified by the Department of Finance. or completely catalogue all its details. 14 Finally. The criteria provided for in Section 7 of R..

A. 3. That the criteria established in this Code shall not affect the classification and corporate status of existing cities. The voters of component cities within a province. the increase in the number of legislative seats for the City of Makati provided for in R. as determined by law. No. Article VI of the Constitution. Section 12 of Article X thereof provides: Sec. the clause refers to a general reapportionment law. 451. the Members thereof shall be elected from legislative districts apportioned among the provinces. 12.The constitution classifies cities as either highly urbanized or component. Section 5. Any province that may hereafter be created. and the Metropolitan Manila Area as follows: METROPOLITAN MANILA AREA xxx xxx xxx MAKATI one (1) II. and component cities whose charters prohibit their voters from voting for provincial elective officials. The increase under R. 7160 provides: Sec. xxx xxx xxx Strictly speaking. however. or any city whose population may hereafter increase to more than two hundred fifty thousand shall be entitled in the immediately following election to at least one Member or such number of Members as it may be entitled to on the basis of the number of 28 . For purposes of the election of Members of the House of Representatives of the First Congress of the Philippines under the Constitution proposed by the 1986 Constitutional Commission and subsequent elections. and until otherwise provided by law.A. Cities Classified. 7854 is not an increase justified by the clause unless otherwise fixed by law in paragraph 1. No. whose charters contain no such prohibition. the Congress shall make a reapportionment of legislative districts based on the standards provided in this section. No. shall not be deprived of their right to vote for elective provincial officials. Independent component cities shall be independent of the province. 1. cities. Cities that are highly urbanized. In short. Independent component cities are those component cities whose charters prohibit their voters from voting for provincial elective officials. shall be independent of the province. That clause contemplates of the reapportionment mentioned in the succeeding paragraph (4) of the said Section which reads in full as follows: Sec. — A city may either be component or highly urbanized: Provided. Within three years following the return of every census. 7854 is a permissible increase under Sections 1 and 3 of the Ordinance appended to the Constitution which reads: Sec. And Section 451 of R.A.

The The constitution classifies cities as either highly urbanized or component. not a highly urbanized city. of at least Twenty million pesos (P20. shall not be deprived of their right to vote for elective provincial officials. whose charters contain no such prohibition. — (a) A municipality or a cluster of barangays may be converted into a component city if it has an average annual income. Section 5 of Article VI of the Constitution. ." These criteria are now set forth in Section 7 of the Local Government Code of 1991 (R. . No. to add a few observations.A. 450. or where the city. J. The number of Members apportioned to the province out of which such new province was created. (b) The territorial jurisdiction of a newly created city shall be properly identified by metes and bounds. xxx xxx xxx Section 10. concurring: I concur in the well written opinion of Mr. municipality or barangay may be created.A. the section starts with the clause "as a general rule. whose population has so increased.. 7160 is unavailing Said section only applies to the conversion of a municipality or a cluster of barangays into a COMPONENT CITY. 12. for. No. JR. The voters of component cities within a province. is geographically located shall be correspondingly adjusted by the Commission on Elections but such adjustment shall not be made within one hundred and twenty days before the election. Article X of the Constitution provides that "[n]o province. as a matter of fact. It pertinently reads as follows: Sec.A. 7160).its inhabitants and according to the standards set forth in paragraph (3). Cities that are highly urbanized.A. as certified by the Department of Finance.. No. 7854 are not absolute. (Emphases supplied) Separate Opinions DAVIDE. .000. merged. city.000. or its boundary substantially altered. divided. No. abolished. as determined by law. Constitution does not provide for a description by metes and bounds as a condition sine qua non for the creation of a local government unit or its conversion from one level to another. Section 12 of Article X thereof provides: Sec. The omission of R. No. however. 7854 unconstitutional or illegal. 7854 (An Act Converting the Municipality of Makati Into a Highly Urbanized City to be Known as the City of Makati) to describe the territorial boundaries of the city by metes and bounds does not make R. 29 . I wish. Justice Reynato S. and component cities whose charters prohibit their voters from voting for provincial elective officials. One of these is that the territorial jurisdiction of the local government unit to be created or converted should be properly identified by metes and bounds with technical descriptions. except in accordance with the criteria established in the local government code and subject to the approval by a majority of the votes cast in a plebiscite in the political units directly affected." The petitioners' reliance on Section 450 of R. Puno. Requisite for creation. shall be independent of the province.A. The criteria provided for in Section 7 of R.00) for the last two (2) consecutive years based on 1991 constant prices. and if it has either of the following requisites: I.

That clause contemplates of the reapportionment mentioned in the succeeding paragraph (4) of the said Section which reads in full as follows: Within three years following the return of every census. however. or any city whose population may hereafter increase to more than two hundred fifty thousand shall be entitled in the immediately following election to at least one Member or such number of Members as it may be entitled to on the basis of the number of its inhabitants and according to the standards set forth in paragraph (3).A. 3. II. For purposes of the election of Members of the House of Representatives of the First Congress of the Philippines under the Constitution proposed by the 1986 Constitutional Commission and subsequent elections. and the Metropolitan Manila Area as follows: METROPOLITAN MANILA AREA xxx xxx xxx MAKATI one (1) xxx xxx xxx Sec. cities. the clause refers to a general reapportionment law. is geographically located shall be correspondingly adjusted by the Commission on Elections but such adjustment shall not be made within one hundred and twenty days before the election. Article VI of the Constitution.And Section 451 of R. Section 5 of Article VI of the Constitution. No.A. The number of Members apportioned to the province out of which such new province was created. the Congress shall make a reapportionment of legislative districts based on the standards provided in this section. — A city may either be component or highly urbanized: Provided. or where the city. Strictly speaking. No. 7160 provides: Sec. 1. Section 5. 7854 is not an increase justified by the clause unless otherwise fixed by law in paragraph 1. No. That the criteria established in this Code shall not affect the classification and corporate status of existing cities. the Members thereof shall be elected from legislative districts apportioned among the provinces. whose population has so increased.A. In short. 7854 is a permissible increase under Sections 1 and 3 of the Ordinance appended to the Constitution which reads: Sec. Cities Classified. Any province that may hereafter be created. Independent component cities are those component cities whose charters prohibit their voters from voting for provincial elective officials. 451. Independent component cities shall be independent of the province. (Emphases supplied) 30 . and until otherwise provided by law. the increase in the number of legislative seats for the City of Makati provided for in R. The increase under R.

xxx xxx xxx Sec. 31 . embrace only one subject which shall be expressed in the title thereof. — As a general rule. shall have at least one representative. we take judicial notice of the fact that since 1986 up to this time. Sovereignty resides in the people and all government authority from them. — . 450. 5. 23-28. Congress has yet to pass a general reapportionment law. 1994. Requisites for Creation.A. . 9 Section 5(1). (b) The territorial jurisdiction of a newly-created city shall be properly identified by metes and bounds. . 26 (1) Every bill passed by the Congress shall. 1 R. 95 SCRA 392 (19180). Compliance with the foregoing indicators shall be attested to by the Department of Finance the National Statistics Office (NSO). December 8. 7. citing as example the City of Mandaluyong. and adjacent territory. — It must be contiguous. 5 Dumlao v. Creation and Conversion. (4) Within three years following the return of every census. 7 Section 26(1). . Article VI of the Constitution provides: Sec. p. COMELEC. the Congress shall make a reapportionment of legislative districts based on the standards provided in this section. .Footnotes 4 Ibid. No. 1991 ed. 7854 is a consolidation of House Bill No. compact. 1244 sponsored by Senator Vicente Sotto III. as far as practicable.B. 12240 sponsored by Congressman Joker Arroyo and Senate Bill No. . No. 1994. Article VI of the Constitution provides: 2 Sec. 12240. 8 G. 10 In this connection. . 24. Cruz.R. . or each province. 11 Section 1. contiguous. 6 Section 5(4). Senate Deliberations on H. Each city with a population of at least two hundred fifty thousand. 3 August 18.. the creation of a local government unit or its conversion from one level to another level shall be based on verifiable indicators of viability and projected capacity to provide services. unless it comprises two (2) or more islands or is separated by a local government unit independent of the others. No. Constitutional Law. Article VI. and the Lands Management Bureau (LMB) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR). to wit: xxx xxx xxx (c) Land Area. Article II provides that "the Philippines is a democratic and republican state." 12 Sec. properly identified by metes and bounds with technical descriptions and sufficient to provide for such basic services and facilities to meet the requirements of its populace. pp. (3) Each legislative district shall comprise. 114783. .

1994. 152295. 2002] ANTONIETTE V.174.R. or any city whose population may hereafter increase to more than two hundred fifty thousand shall be entitled in the immediately following election to at least one Member or such number of Members as it may be entitled to on the basis of the number of its inhabitants and according to the standards set forth in paragraph (3). and twenty days before the election. No. 14 Sec. Section 5 of Article VI of the Constitution. Senate Deliberations on House Bill No. 3 provides: "Any province that may hereafter be created. RONALD ATANGAN 32 .C. MONTESCLAROS. July 9. 12240 (converting Makati into a highly urbanized city). JOSEPHINE ATANGAN. the population of Makati as of 1994 stood at 508. whose population has so increased.xxx xxx xxx 13 As per the certificate issued by Administration Tomas Africa of the National Census and Statistics Office. August 4. is geographically located shall be correspondingly adjusted by the Commission on Elections but such adjustment shall not be made within one hundred. p. The number of Members apportioned to the province out of which such new province was created or where the city. 15. MARICEL CARANZO." EN BANC [G.

Petitioners assail the alleged conspiracy because youths at least 18 but not more than 21 years old will be summarily and unduly dismembered. No. CONGRESSMAN AGUSTO L. c) In the alternative. COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS. if the SK elections will be postponed for whatever reason. filed this petition as a taxpayers and class suit. MACIAS II in his capacity as Chairman of the Committee on Local Government of the House of Representatives. 4713 and 4714 and to expedite the funding of the SK elections. Petitioners.and CLARIZA DECENA. on their own behalf and on behalf of other youths similarly situated. there must be a definite date for said elections. SYJOCO in his capacity as Chairman of the Committee on Suffrage and Electoral Reforms. THE PRESIDENT OF THE PAMBANSANG KATIPUNAN NG MGA SANGGUNIANG KABATAAN. DEPARTMENT OF INTERIOR AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT. J. decree. 33 . 2002. The petition seeks to prevent the postponement of the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK for brevity) elections originally scheduled last May 6. 1996. Petitioners claim that they are in danger of being disqualified to vote and be voted for in the SK elections should the SK elections on May 6. shall be allowed to run for any SK elective position even if they are more than 21 years old. EXECUTIVE SECRETARY of the OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT. July 15. Under the Local Government Code of 1991 (R. prohibition and mandamus with prayer for a temporary restraining order or preliminary injunction. and the present SK membership. 2002 SK elections set by the present law and in accordance with Comelec Resolutions No. petitioners pray for the issuance of a temporary restraining order or preliminary injunction - DECISION a) To prevent. 2002 SK elections. and CONGRESSMAN EMILIO C. Petitioners allege that public respondents connived. DEPARTMENT OF BUDGET AND MANAGEMENT. confederated and conspired to postpone the May 6. [1] Thus. unjustly disassociated and obnoxiously disqualified from the SK organization. except those incumbent SK officers who were elected on May 6. petitioners. CONGRESSMAN JOSE DE VENECIA in his capacity as Speaker. CARPIO. 2002 be postponed to a later date. who are all 20 years old. SENATOR FRANKLIN DRILON in his capacity as Senate President and SENATOR AQUILINO PIMENTEL in his capacity as Minority Leader of the Senate of the Philippines. annul or declare unconstitutional any law. unfairly discriminated. unnecessarily disenfranchised. AND ALL THEIR AGENTS AND REPRESENTATIVES. vs. 2002. The Case b) To command the respondents to continue the May 6. 2002 SK elections and to lower the membership age in the SK to at least 15 but less than 18 years of age.A. The petition also seeks to prevent the reduction of the age requirement for membership in the SK. membership in the SK is limited to youths at least 15 but not more than 21 years old. and OTHER YOUTH OF THE LAND SIMILARLY SITUATED.: Before us is a petition for certiorari. respondents. Comelec resolution/directive and other respondents issuances. 7160). for example. orders and actions and the like in postponing the May 6.

Benipayo (Chairman Benipayo for brevity). The Katipunan ng Kabataan in every barangay is composed of all citizens actually residing in the barangay for at least six months and who meet the membership age requirement. Ten days lapsed without the Comelec responding to the letter of Montesclaros.[3] The Local Government Code of 1991 renamed the KB to SK and limited SK membership to those youths at least 15 but not more than 21 years of age. 684 as the Kabataang Barangay (KB for brevity). petitioners filed the instant petition.C. 4456. 7808 mandated the Comelec to supervise the conduct of the SK elections under rules the Comelec shall promulgate. otherwise. The KB was organized to provide its members with the opportunity to express their views and opinions on issues of transcendental importance. economic.[5] The SK in every barangay is composed of a chairperson and seven members. RA No. 2002. In his letters. RA No. [4] The SK remains as a youth organization in every barangay tasked to initiate programs to enhance the social.[15] The Bicameral Committees consolidated bill reset the SK and Barangay elections to July 15. Accordingly. the Comelec on December 4. On March 11. demanding that the SK elections be held as scheduled on May 6. 2002 recommending to Congress the postponement of the SK elections to November 2002 but holding the Barangay elections in May 2002 as scheduled. On February 18. Alfredo L. cultural. 2050[14] and House Bill No. moral. 2002 and lowered the membership age in the SK to at least 15 but not more than 18 years of age. petitioners received a copy of Comelec En Banc Resolution No. the Comelec Chairman intimated that it was operationally very difficult to hold both elections simultaneously in May 2002. 1992. 2002.d) To direct the incumbent SK officers who are presently representing the SK in every sanggunian and the NYC to vacate their post after the barangay elections. the Bicameral Conference Committee (Bicameral Committee for brevity) of the Senate and the House came out with a Report[13] recommending approval of the reconciled bill consolidating Senate Bill No. the Comelec Chairman expressed support for the bill of Senator Franklin Drilon that proposed to hold the Barangay elections in May 2002 and postpone the SK elections to November 2002. 2002. The KB was composed of all barangay residents who were less than 18 years old. then Comelec Chairman. Montesclaros (Montesclaros for brevity) sent a letter [8] to the Comelec. 2002. Montesclaros also urged the Comelec to respond to her letter within 10 days upon receipt of the letter. spiritual. the Senate and the House of Representatives passed their respective bills postponing the SK elections. she will seek judicial relief.[12] On March 6.[2] The Facts The SK is a youth organization originally established by Presidential Decree No. On February 20. and physical development of the youth. On March 11. The first SK elections took place on December 4. 2002. 2001 issued Resolution Nos. wrote identical letters to the Speaker of the House[9] and the Senate President[10] about the status of pending bills on the SK and Barangay elections. 7808 reset the SK elections to the first Monday of May of 1996 and every three years thereafter. 2002. intellectual. 34 . political. all elected by the Katipunan ng Kabataan. 2002. 4713[6] and 4714[7] to govern the SK elections on May 6. without specifying the minimum age. Subsequently. petitioner Antoniette V. Instead. 4763[11] dated February 5.

II. IN VIOLATION OF LAW AND CONSTITUTION. 2002. 3. 9164 also provides that there shall be a synchronized SK and Barangay elections on July 15.[20] RA No. the Court takes judicial notice of the following events that have transpired since petitioners filed this petition: 1. 4846. ILLEGALLY AND UNCONSTITUTIONALLY THUS CONSTITUTED (SIC) WITH GRAVE ABUSE OF DISCRETION. ILLEGALLY AND UNCONSTITUTIONALLY THUS CONSTITUTED (SIC) WITH GRAVE ABUSE OF DISCRETION. III. 2002. 2002 SK elections and May 13. the House of Representatives approved the same.On March 11. AMOUNTING TO LACK OR EXCESS OF JURISDICTION WHEN THEY WILLFULLY FAILED TO FUND THE SK ELECTION PURPORTEDLY TO POSTPONE THE SAME IN ORDER TO IMPLEMENT THEIR ILLEGAL SCHEME AND MACHINATION IN SPITE OF THE FACT THAT THERE ARE AVAILABLE FUNDS FOR THE PURPOSE. RESPONDENTS ACTED WHIMSICALLY. 35 . At the outset. the Senate approved the Bicameral Committees consolidated bill and on March 13. The President signed the approved bill into law on March 19. 2002 Barangay elections were not held as scheduled. The Issues IV. 2002. RESPONDENTS ACTED WHIMSICALLY. The Comelec promulgated Resolution No. AMOUNTING TO LACK OR EXCESS OF JURISDICTION WHEN THEY INTENDED TO POSTPONE THE SK ELECTIONS. Petitioners[16] raise the following grounds in support of their petition: I. AMOUNTING TO LACK OR EXCESS OF JURISDICTION WHEN THEY INTENDED TO DISCRIMINATE. SINGLE OUT AND DISMEMBER THE SK MEMBERS WHO ARE 18 BUT NOT LESS[17] (SIC) THAN 21 YEARS OLD COMPOSED OF ABOUT 7 MILLION YOUTH. ILLEGALLY AND UNCONSTITUTIONALLY THUS CONSTITUTED (SIC) WITH THE INCUMBENT SK OFFICERS WANTED TO PERPETUALLY SIT ON THEIR RESPECTIVE OFFICES CONTRARY TO THE ENVISION (SIC) OF THE CREATION OF THE SK ORGANIZATION. DISENFRANCHISE. The May 6. GRAVE ABUSE OF DISCRETION. Congress enacted RA No. HENCE. 2. 2002. RESPONDENTS ACTED WHIMSICALLY. the rules and regulations for the conduct of the July 15.[18] The Courts Ruling The petition is bereft of merit. 2002 synchronized SK and Barangay elections. 9164 [19] which provides that voters and candidates for the SK elections must be at least 15 but less than 18 years of age on the day of the election.

Thus. (Emphasis supplied) Thus. the reconciliation by the Bicameral Committee of approved bills. and to determine whether or not there has been a grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction on the part of any branch or instrumentality of the Government. having no legal effect. With respect to the date of the SK elections. the Court cannot restrain Congress from passing any law. 2002. not before. petitioners instituted this petition to: (1) compel public respondents to hold the SK elections on May 6. 2002. petitioners are nevertheless amenable to a resetting of the SK elections to any date not later than July 15. a date acceptable to petitioners. The public respondents failure to hold the elections on May 6. the SK elections should be held not later than July 15. there is no actual controversy requiring the exercise of the power of judicial review. (2) a personal and substantial interest of the party raising the constitutional question. and the eventual approval into law of the reconciled bills by each chamber of 36 . 2002 and should it be postponed. (3) the exercise of judicial review is pleaded at the earliest opportunity. Petitioners prayer to prevent Congress from enacting into law a proposed bill lowering the membership age in the SK does not present an actual justiciable controversy. Petitioners claim that a reduction in the SK membership age to 15 but less than 18 years of age from the then membership age of 15 but not more than 21 years of age would disqualify about seven million youths. The Court has no power to declare a proposed bill constitutional or unconstitutional because that would be in the nature of rendering an advisory opinion on a proposed act of Congress. A proposed bill is not subject to judicial review because it is not a law. the approval of bills by each chamber of Congress. Under the separation of powers. 2002 SK elections. the postponement would disqualify from SK membership youths who will turn 21 years old between May 6. A proposed bill creates no right and imposes no duty legally enforceable by the Court.[21] In the instant case. (2) prevent public respondents from passing laws and issuing resolutions and orders that would lower the membership age in the SK. the following acts of Congress in the exercise of its legislative powers are not subject to judicial restraint: the filing of bills by members of Congress. namely: (1) the existence of an actual and appropriate case or controversy. RA No. A proposed bill. and (4) the constitutional question is the lis mota of the case. who all claim to be 20 years old. argue that the postponement of the May 6. 2002 would prejudice petitioners and other youths similarly situated. The Courts power of judicial review may be exercised in constitutional cases only if all the following requisites are complied with. 2002 SK elections disenfranchises them. violates no constitutional right or duty.Petitioners. While seeking to prevent a postponement of the May 6. Article VIII of the Constitution states Judicial power includes the duty of the courts of justice to settle actual controversies involving rights which are legally demandable and enforceable. 2002 to participate in any re-scheduled SK elections. there is therefore no actual controversy requiring judicial intervention. 9164 has reset the SK elections to July 15. The power of judicial review cannot be [22] exercised in vacuo. preventing them from voting and being voted for in the SK elections. and (3) compel public respondents to allow petitioners and those who have turned more than 21 years old on May 6. Petitioners theory is that if the SK elections were postponed to a date later than May 6. The second paragraph of Section 1. Thus. 2002. or from setting into motion the legislative mill according to its internal rules. there can be no justiciable controversy involving the constitutionality of a proposed bill. 2002 and the date of the new SK elections. 2002. The Court can exercise its power of judicial review only after a law is enacted.

2002 SK elections necessitates assailing the constitutionality of RA No. The Court will not strike down a law unless its constitutionality is properly raised in an appropriate action and adequately argued. Congress merely restored the age requirement in PD No. which reset the SK elections and reduced the age requirement for SK membership.[23] The Court has also no power to dictate to Congress the object or subject of bills that Congress should enact into law. Not falling within this classification. that petitioners raise is their claim that SK membership is a property right within the meaning of the Constitution. At the time petitioners filed this petition. 9164 to youths at least 15 but less than 18 years old. 2002 SK elections. 2002 to participate in the July 15. coordinate and independent branches of government. A law is needed to allow all those who have turned more than 21 years old on or after May 6. 9164.Plainly. 9164. subordinate. In petitioners own words. Every law passed by Congress is always subject to amendment or repeal by Congress. to vote and be voted for in the July 15. The Court has no power to compel Congress by mandamus to enact a law allowing petitioners.[26] In the instant case. A party must show that he has been. the Court cannot exercise its power of judicial review over the internal processes or procedures of Congress. not judicial intervention. The new law restricts membership in the SK to this specific age group. After the passage of RA No. To grant petitioners prayer to be allowed to vote and be voted for in the July 15. petitioners seek to enforce a right originally conferred by law on those who were at least 15 but not more than 21 years old. 9164. This. Petitioners remedy is legislation. or is about to be denied some personal right or privilege to which he is lawfully entitled. or inconsequential interest. Now. By real interest is meant a present substantial interest. petitioners have ceased to be members of the SK and are no longer qualified to participate in the July 15. Petitioners do not have a vested right to the permanence of the age requirement under Section 424 of the Local Government Code of 1991.Congress. petitioners no longer have a personal and substantial interest in the SK elections. for the power to make laws includes the power to change the laws. with the passage of RA No. petitioners failed to assail any provision in RA No. 9164. the original charter of the SK. The judicial power to review the constitutionality of laws does not include the power to prescribe to Congress what laws to enact. 2002 SK elections. Youths from 18 to 21 years old as of May 6. 2002 SK elections.[24] The Court cannot also direct the Comelec to allow over-aged voters to vote or be voted for in an election that is limited under RA No. they and others similarly situated 37 . [28] Since certain public offices are reserved for SK officers. contingent. 2002 SK elections. 2002 are also no longer SK members. To do so would destroy the delicate system of checks and balances finely crafted by the Constitution for the three co-equal. was not yet enacted into law. this right is limited to those who on the date of the SK elections are at least 15 but less than 18 years old. 684. The Court cannot restrain Congress from amending or repealing laws. regardless of their age. and cannot participate in the July 15.[25] A party must also show that he has a real interest in the suit.Absent a clear violation of specific constitutional limitations or of constitutional rights of private parties. Congress will have to decide whether to enact an amendatory law. RA No. 9164. Under RA No. petitioners also claim a constitutionally protected opportunity to occupy these public offices. which fixed the maximum age for membership in the SK to youths less than 18 years old. as distinguished from a mere expectancy or future. This petition does not raise any constitutional issue. petitioners have not done. albeit erroneous. Petitioners have no personal and substantial interest in maintaining this suit. [27] The only semblance of a constitutional issue. 9164 that could be unconstitutional.

once an employee reaches mandatory retirement age. any act disqualifying them from SK membership or from voting in the SK elections.Congress may amend at any time the law to change or even withdraw the statutory right. A public office is not a property right. [34] decided in 1920. SK membership is not a property right protected by the Constitution because it is a mere statutory right conferred by law. The petition must also fail because no grave abuse of discretion attended the postponement of the SK elections. they cannot invoke any property right to cling to their SK membership. respectively. it would be necessary to consider an office a property. the officers being mere agents and not rulers of the people. (Emphasis supplied) Petitioners. 38 . with rank of a Department Assistant Secretary. but is a public trust or agency. This law also fixes the date of the SK elections. the law does not confer on petitioners a proprietary right or even a proprietary expectancy to sit in local legislative councils. one where no one man or set of men has a proprietary or contractual right to an office. The constitutional principle of a public office as a public trust precludes any proprietary claim to public office. Moreover. well settled x x x that a public office is not property within the sense of the constitutional guaranties of due process of law. based on a statutory right. [33] No one has a vested right to any public office.[32] Congress exercises the power to prescribe the qualifications for SK membership. As the Constitution expressly states. In government service. 9164. the Court already ruled: Again. for this petition to come under the due process of law prohibition. but where every officer accepts office pursuant to the provisions of the law and holds the office as a trust for the people he represents. which itself is a creation of Congress. the president of the federation of SK organizations in a municipality.[29] Under the Local Government Code of 1991. Gabriel. It is. 9164 enjoys the presumption of constitutionality and will apply to the July 15.Congress has the power to define who are the youth qualified to join the SK. city council or provincial board. RA No. Only those who qualify as SK members can contest. a [P]ublic office is a public trust. In the same manner. 2002 SK elections. Even the State policy directing equal access to opportunities for public service[35] cannot bestow on petitioners a proprietary right to SK membership or a proprietary expectancy to ex-officio public offices.stand to lose their opportunity to work in the government positions reserved for SK members or officers. While the law makes an SK officer an ex-officio member of a local government legislative council. who apparently desire to hold public office.[36] this policy refers to those who belong to the class of people defined as the youth. In Cornejo v. much less a vested right to an expectancy of holding a public office. while the State policy is to encourage the youths involvement in public affairs. One who is no longer qualified because of an amendment in the law cannot complain of being deprived of a proprietary right to SK membership. x x x The basic idea of the government x x x is that of a popular representative government. city or province is an ex-officio member of the municipal council. since petitioners are now past the maximum age for membership in the SK. however.[31] The president of the national federation of SK organizations is an ex-officio member of the National Youth Commission.[30] The chairperson of the SK in the barangay is an ex-officio member of the Sangguniang Barangay. RA No. Those who do not qualify because they are past the age group defined as the youth cannot insist on being part of the youth. should realize from the very start that no one has a proprietary right to public office. he cannot invoke any property right to cling to his office. 9164 is now the law that prescribes the qualifications of candidates and voters for the SK elections. Petitioners are not even assailing the constitutionality of RA No.

The evidence consist of the following: (1) Comelec en banc Resolution No. 2002. SO ORDERED. (2) the letter of then Comelec Chairman Benipayo addressed to the Speaker of the House of Representatives and the President of the Senate. 2002 that recommended the postponement of the SK elections to 2003. 4456. While RA No. The evidence cited by petitioners even establish that the Comelec has demonstrated an earnest effort to address the practical problems in holding the SK elections on May 6. The 1987 Constitution imposes upon the Comelec the duty of enforcing and administering all laws and regulations relative to the conduct of elections. This petition presents no actual justiciable controversy. 14-15. the petition is DISMISSED for utter lack of merit. Vitug.[41] Public respondents having acted strictly pursuant to their constitutional powers and duties. Petitioners do not cite any provision of law that is alleged to be unconstitutional. Mendoza. initiative. depriving other youths of the opportunity to serve in elective SK positions. Ynares-Santiago.[38] The Comelecs acts enjoy the presumption of regularity in the performance of official duties. The very evidence relied upon by petitioners contradict their allegation of illegality. C.. 2050 and House Bill No..Petitioners have not shown that the Comelec acted illegally or with grave abuse of discretion in recommending to Congress the postponement of the SK elections. and (3) the Conference Committee Report consolidating Senate Bill No.. Quisumbing. as claimed by petitioners. Comelec. JJ.. pp. Lastly. concur. Panganiban. Sandoval-Gutierrez. petitioners have no personal and substantial interest in maintaining this suit. is entitled to the presumption of regularity of official acts with respect to the elections. Davide. 2002 SK elections. pp. incumbent SK officials can remain in office only until their successors have been elected or qualified.[40] the Comelec. This argument deserves scant consideration. The Comelec exercised its power and duty to enforce and administer all laws and regulations relative to the conduct of an election. Jr. when the SK elections are held. referendum and recall[37] and to recommend to Congress effective measures to minimize election spending. [2] Ibid. and Corona. Kapunan. that there exists a connivance and conspiracy (among) respondents in contravention of the present law. [1] Rollo. 4-5. WHEREFORE. [39] These acts cannot constitute proof. Grave abuse of discretion is such capricious and whimsical exercise of judgment that is patent and gross as to amount to an evasion of a positive duty or a virtual refusal to perform a duty enjoined by law.J. On July 15. 2002. The presumption remains that the decision of the Comelec to recommend to Congress the postponement of the elections was made in good faith in the regular course of its official duties. 4763 dated February 5. 39 . plebiscite. As the Court held in Pangkat Laguna v. Petitioners failed to prove that the Comelec committed grave abuse of discretion in recommending to Congress the postponement of the May 6. Austria-Martinez. the holdover period expires and all incumbent SK officials automatically cease to hold their SK offices and their ex-officio public offices. we find no grave abuse of discretion on the part of public respondents. 9164 contains a hold-over provision. Bellosillo. Puno. In sum. Petitioners contend that the postponement of the SK elections would allow the incumbent SK officers to perpetuate themselves in power. as the government agency tasked with the enforcement and administration of elections laws. we find no grave abuse of discretion in their assailed acts.

64. (e) Submit annual and end-of-term reports to the sangguniang barangay on their projects and activities for the survival and development of the youth in the barangay. Earlier. [17] This should read more. otherwise known as the `Local Government Code of 1991. and (i) Exercise such other powers and perform such other duties and functions as may be prescribed by law or ordinance. Inc. [18] Rollo. cultural. Guingona. economic. [30] Section 438. pp. [14] An Act providing for a synchronized Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections on the second Monday of November 2002. 338 SCRA 81 (2000). had increased the age requirement to twenty-one years of age or less. 62-63. v. [5] Rollo. (c) Hold fund-raising activities. RA No. 8. Santiago v. An Act Providing for Synchronized Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan Elections. 7160.. 40 . (f) Consult and coordinate with all youth organizations in the barangay for policy formulation and program implementation. Article XI of the 1987 Constitution. pp. 190 SCRA 782 (1990). (g) Coordinate with the appropriate national agency for the implementation of youth development projects and programs at the national level. 249 SCRA 628 (1995). [9] Ibid. and for other purposes. [29] Ibid.. [25] Bayan (Bagong Alyansang Makabayan) v. 152. 2002. [32] Section 5. (d) Create such bodies or committees as it may deem necessary to effectively carry out its programs and activities. Philippine Political Law. That in the appropriation thereof. the proceeds of which shall be tax-exempt and shall accrue to the general fund of the sangguniang kabataan: Provided. [22] Allied Broadcasting Center. spiritual. the specific purpose for which such activity has been held shall be first satisfied. Entitled In Re: Position of the Commission on Elections on the Postponement or Synchronization of the Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) Elections within the year 2002. 243 SCRA 422 (1995).. 1977. 7160. 315 SCRA 693 (1999). Commission on Elections. De Venecia. [26] Caruncho III v. p. Local Government Code of 1991. pp. 8044. pp. The Sangguniang Kabataan shall: (a) Promulgate resolutions necessary to carry out the objectives of the youth in the barangay in accordance with the applicable provisions of this Code. [21] Integrated Bar of the Philippines vs. [13] An Act amending Republic Act No. 65. [34] 41 Phil.. 1998 Ed. 320 SCRA 486 (1999). Rollo. (h) Exercise such other powers and perform such other duties and functions as the sangguniang barangay may determine or delegate. pp.Second Whereas Clause of PD No. resetting the elections of the Sangguniang Kabataan officials to the first Monday of November. Resolution No. 47-55. moral. 2002 Election of Members of the Sangguniang Kabataan. Otherwise Known As `The Local Government Code of 1991. as amended. [28] Petition dated March 11. 3. Ibid. Republic. p. issued on February 28. 25-26.. 277 SCRA 268 (1997). Tolentino v. And For Other Purposes. [31] Section 390. Secretary of Finance. 4714 is entitled Calendar of Activities and Periods of Certain Prohibited Acts in Connection with the May 6. 9164. Board of Election Supervisors of Ibaan. Mantilla.. [27] See Reyes v. and physical development of the members. 684. 66-68. See also Arroyo v. [33] Section 1. Batangas. [11] [12] Ibid. p.. PD No. 8524. [10] Ibid. Zamora. repealing Republic Act No. [3] This was the same membership qualification in Section 116 of the Local Government Code of 1983. Amending Republic Act No. and for other purposes. political. [15] [16] Represented by Atty. 188 (1920). Court of Appeals. 56-61. 298 SCRA 756 (1998). p. (b) Initiate programs designed to enhance the social. [6] Ibid. Cruz. 4713 is entitled Rules and Regulation on the Registration of Members of the Katipunan ng Kabataan in Connection with the May 6.Powers and Functions of the Sangguniang Kabataan. Abraham A. [19] [20] Sections 6 and 7 of RA No. 69-71. Local Government Code of 1991. Resolution No. 1102. intellectual. [23] [24] Isagani A. [7] [8] Ibid. See also Mercado vs. [4] Section 426 of the Local Government Code enumerates the powers and functions of the Sangguniag Kabataan as follows: Section 426. Zamora. however. As Amended. 2002 Election of Members of the Sangguniang Kabataan. pp. p. 2002. 342 SCRA 449 (2000).

[38] Section 2. see note 21. June 19.R. Comelec. EN BANC [G. [36] Section 13.respondent. paragraph (1). [40] G. 2002. 93100.[35] Section 26. No. 312 SCRA 447 (1999). Zamora. June 19. Article IX-C of the 1987 Constitution. Article II of the 1987 Constitution. [G. February 4. 148075. [39] Salcedo vs. THE HONORABLE SECRETARY OF THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRARIAN REFORM. petitioner.R. [37] Section 2. 97855. Article IX-C of the 1987 Constitution. No. No.R. 1997] 41 . vs. paragraph (7). Article II of the 1987 Constitution. 1997] ATLAS FERTILIZER CORPORATION. [41] Integrated Bar of the Philippines v.

In aquaculture. fishponds.[5] this Court has already ruled impliedly that lands devoted to fishing are not agriculture lands. v. INC. vs. They assail Sections 3 (b). Inc.A. as held inLuz Farms. They also argue that they are entitled to the full benefit of Luz Farms to the effect that only five percent of the total investment in aquaculture activities.. Inc. and petitioner-in-intervention Archies Fishpond. the constitutionally intended beneficiaries under Section 4. Acuna[3] are engaged in the aquaculture industry utilizing fishponds and prawn farms. J. 4. petitioner. RESOLUTION Constitution mandate the State to promote equality in economic and employment opportunities. by including in its coverage. petitioners contend that in the case of Luz Farms. and prawn farms. and differently treat aquaculture lands and other industrial lands. 6657 otherwise known as the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law. XIII. In their first argument. Inc. and therefore. 11. THE HONORABLE SECRETARY OF THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRARIAN REFORM. Article XIII of the The constitutionality of the above-mentioned provisions has been ruled upon in the case of Luz Farms. Inc. the use of land is only incidental to and not the principal factor in productivity and. Article XIII of the constitution limits agrarian reform only to agriculture lands. nor farm workers. Secretary of Agrarian Reform. 16 (d). the raising of fish and aquaculture operations including fishponds and prawn ponds. who till lands. and Arsenio Al. Secretary of Agrarian Reform[4] regarding the inclusion of land devoted to the raising of livestock. 11. 13. 8 and 10 Series of 1988 issued by public respondent Secretary of the Department of Agrarian Reform as unconstitutional. and therefore. particularly fishponds and prawn farms.A. 1987 Constitution do not exist in aquaculture. ROMERO. 17 and 32 of CARL extend agrarian reform to aquaculture lands even as Section 4. there are no farmers. hence. In their second argument. when they are similarly situated in violation of the constitutional guarantee of the equal protection of the laws. Further. poultry and swine in its coverage. 16 (d).A. is in the form of land. that in fishponds and prawn farms. treating them as in the same class or classification as agriculture or farming violates the 42 . they too should be excluded from R. 6657. 3. swine. 2. cannot be classified as agricultural activity. Article XIII of the Constitution mandate the State to respect the freedom of enterprise and the right of enterprises to reasonable returns on investments and to expansion and growth. Petitioners claim that the questioned provisions of CARL violate the Constitution in the following manner: 1. [2] Philippine Federation of Fishfarm Producers. fishponds and prawn farms. 6657 just as lands devoted to livestock.: Before this Court are consolidated petitions questioning the constitutionality of some portions of Republic Act No. Sections 3 (b). Art. they contend that R.PHILIPPINE FEDERATION OF FISHFARM PRODUCERS. 17 and 32 of R. 6657. respondent. The questioned provisions deprive petitioner of its governmentinduced investments in aquaculture even as Sections 2 and 3. The questioned provisions distort employment benefits and burdens in favor of aquaculture employees and against other industrial workers even as Section 1 and 3. as well as the implementing guidelines and procedures contained in Administrative Order Nos. The issue now before this Court is the constitutionality of the same above-mentioned provisions insofar as they include in its coverage lands devoted to the aquaculture industry. and poultry have been excluded for the same reason. and no agrarian unrest.[1] Petitioners Atlas Fertilizer Corporation. The questioned provisions similarly treat of aquaculture lands and agriculture lands when they are differently situated. 13. v.

an additional ten percent (10%) of the net profit after tax shall be distributed to said regular and other farmworkers within ninety (90) days of the end of the fiscal year. 2. fishponds. 3. and are therefore void as they implement the assailed provisions of CARL.equal protection clause of the Constitution and is. 7881 [6] was approved by Congress. That these individuals or entities realize gross sales in excess of five million pesos per annum unless the DAR. planting of crops. While the Court will not hesitate to declare a law or an act void when confronted squarely with constitutional issues. (Underscoring Supplied) (c) Section 13 which calls upon petitioner to execute a productionsharing plan. That said prawn farms and fishponds have not been distributed and Certificate of Land Ownership Award (CLOA) issued to agrarian reform beneficiaries under the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program. -. Section 10 of Republic Act No. by means of amendment. including the harvesting of such farm products and other farm activities and practices performed by a farmer in conjunction with such farming operations done by persons whether natural or juridical. 6657 is hereby amended to read as follows: Sec. 1995. unless the context indicates otherwise: (b) Agriculture. 8 and 10 issued by the Secretary of the Department of Agrarian Reform are. Section 3. Further. Paragraph (b) of Republic Act No. Agricultural Enterprise or Agricultural Activity means the cultivation of the soil. Definitions. Section 1.-- (e) Section 32 which spells out the production-sharing plan mentioned in Section 13x x x (W)hereby three percent (3%) of the gross sales from the production of such lands are distributed within sixty (60) days at the end of the fiscal year as compensation to regular and other farmworkers in such lands over and above the compensation they currently receive: Provided. 43 . Exemptions and Exclusions. On February 20. to which category lands devoted to aquaculture. and fish farms belong. unconstitutional. directly and exclusively used for prawn farms and fishponds shall be exempt from the coverage of this Act: Provided. (Underscoring Supplied) (b) Section 11 which defines commercial farms as private agricultural lands devoted to fishponds and prawn ponds x x x. In the event that the individual or entity realizes a profit. the Constitutional Commission debates show that the intent of the constitutional framers is to exclude industrial lands. xxx xxx xxx b) Private lands actually. Provisions of said Act pertinent to the assailed provisions of CARL are the following: The provisions of CARL being assailed as unconstitutional are as follows: (a) Section 3(b) which includes the raising of fish in the definition of Agricultural.For the purpose of this Act. x x x Petitioners also claim that Administrative Order Nos. Sec. said law or act. (d) Section 16 (d) and 17 which vest on the Department of Agrarian reform the authority to summarily determine the just compensation to be paid for lands covered by the comprehensive Agrarian reform Law. determines a lower ceiling. neither will it preempt the Legislative and the Executive branches of the government in correcting or clarifying. therefore. Republic Act No. 10. growing of fruit trees. void. upon proper application. as held in Luz Farms. Agricultural Enterprise or Agricultural Activity. likewise. 6657 is hereby amended to read as follows: Sec.

Hermosisima.5%) of their net profit before tax from the operation of the fishpond or prawn farms are distributed within sixty (60) days at the end of the fiscal year as compensation to regular and other pond workers in such ponds over and above the compensation they currently receive. In order to safeguard the right of the regular fishpond or prawn farm workers under the incentive plan. xxx xxx xxx Sec. Padilla. and Torres. 7881 expressly state that fishponds and prawn farms are excluded from the coverage of CARL. shall be subject to immediate compulsory acquisition and distribution after ten (10) years from the effectivity of this Act. WHEREFORE. 6657 a section to read as follows: Sec. the books of the fishpond or prawn owners shall be subject to periodic audit or inspection by certified public accountants chosen by the workers.. a simple and absolute majority of the actual regular workers or tenants must consent to the exemption within one (1) year from the effectivity of this Act. Sec. Regalado. and cacao. however. [2] G. Jr. upon payment of just compensation for the land and the improvements thereon. paragraph 1 is hereby amended to read as follows: Sec. No. the consent of the farm workers shall no longer be necessary. 3. preferably in favor of organized cooperatives or associations. The above-mentioned provisions of R. During the ten-year period. Commercial Farming. 7881. whereby seven point five percent (7. When the workers or tenants do not agree to this exemption. [3] G. JJ. Mendoza.In cases where the fishponds or prawn farms have been subjected to the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law. which shall thereafter manage the said lands for the workers-beneficiaries. vegetable and cut-flower farms. the petition is hereby DISMISSED. 44 . Vitug. which are private agricultural lands devoted to salt beds. as determined by the DAR. 97855. Bellosillo. No. concur. or commercial farms deferment or notices of compulsory acquisition. [4] 192 SCRA 51 (1990). In view of the foregoing.R. JJ. the Government shall initiate steps necessary to acquire these lands. No. Jr.. Melo. No. Davide.-. by voluntary offer to sell. coffee and rubber plantations. Section 11. 93100. SO ORDERED. Panganiban. if any.. 11. the ten-year period shall begin from the first year of commercial production and operation. the provision of Section 32-A hereof on incentives shall apply. [1] Herein referred to as CARL. Incentives. Puno. Kapunan. the question concerning the constitutionality of the assailed provisions has become moot and academic with the passage of R. 4. In cases where the fishponds or prawn farms have not been subjected to the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law. C. an incentive plan with their regular fishpond or prawn farm workers organization.R. In the case of new farms. and Francisco.J.Commercial Farms.Individuals or entities owning or operating fishponds and prawn farms are hereby mandated to execute within six (6) months from the effectivity of this Act.. The foregoing provisions shall not apply to agricultural lands subsequently converted to fishponds or prawn farms provided the size of the land converted does not exceed the retention limit of the landowner. the fishponds or prawn farms shall be distributed collectively to the worker-beneficiaries or tenants who shall form a cooperative or association to manage the same. Jr. Narvasa. on leave.-..A.. orchards. 32-A. There shall be incorporated after Section 32 of Republic Act No. fruit farms.A.

2001] MIRIAM DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.. 45 . et al. May 10. petitioners. LUMBAO. AQUINO and CESAR O. 147781. vs. GENERAL DIOMEDIO VILLANUEVA. EN BANC [G. May 10. SECRETARY HERNANDO PEREZ.R. 147780. Providing The Mechanism For Its Implementation. respondents. ANGELO REYES. REYNALDO BERROYA. [G.R.R. MANCAO. SUPT. [G. 2001] PANFILO LACSON. MICHAEL RAY B. 2001] RONALDO A. respondents. No. Secretary of National Defense. And For Other Purposes. vs. P/DIRECTOR LEANDRO MENDOZA. May 10. No. P/DIR. Entitled An Act Instituting A Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program To Promote Social Justice And Industrialization. [6] An Act Amending Certain Provisions of Republic Act No.[5] Supra. vs. petitioner. petitioner. and P/SR. 6657. SECRETARY HERNANDO PEREZ. 147799. No.

147810. and the declaration of a state of rebellion. 2001. J. thus. mandamus. Aggrieved by the warrantless arrests. THE ARMED FORCES OF THE PHILIPPINES. Mancao. 147799. No. (Comment. p. Rule 113 of the Rules of Court. Aquino. petitioner. No. petitioners warrantless arrests should be laid to rest. issued Proclamation No. the following four related petitions were filed before the Court(1) G. 147780. not based on the declaration of a state of rebellion. 147799 for prohibition and injunction with prayer for a writ of preliminary injunction and/or restraining order filed by Rolando A. SECRETARY HERNANDO PEREZ. 147781. G. and Cezar O. G. SUPT. and (4) G.R. President MacapagalArroyo ordered the lifting of the declaration of a state of rebellion in Metro Manila. 16. as provided under Section 5. clubs. as stated in respondents Joint Comments: [I]t is already the declared intention of the Justice Department and police authorities to obtain regular warrants of arrests from the courts for all acts committed prior to and until May 1. RESOLUTION MELO. G. All the foregoing petitions assail the declaration of a state of rebellion by President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and the warrantless arrests allegedly effected by virtue thereof. 38 declaring that there was a state of rebellion in the National Capital Region. Michael Ray B.R. and DIRECTOR GENERAL LEANDRO MENDOZA. No. The warrantless arrest feared by petitioners is. p. 147780 for prohibition. respondents. Warrantless arrests of several alleged leaders and promoters of the rebellion were thereafter effected. G. No. and habeas corpus (with an urgent application for the issuance of temporary restraining order and/or writ of preliminary injunction) filed by Panfilo M. Lumbao. No. on May 6. Lacson. the Secretary of Justice denies that it has issued a particular order to arrest specific persons in connection with the rebellion. if the circumstances so warrant. as having no basis both in fact an in law. 2001 which means that preliminary investigators will henceforth be conducted. injunction. firearms.R. 18. 24) With this declaration. p. REYNALDO BERROYA. stones and other deadly weapons assaulting and attempting to break into Malacaang. 147810.R. President Macapagal-Arroyo. He states that what is extant are general instructions to law enforcement officers and military agencies to implement Proclamation No. She likewise issued General Order No. No. 46 . faced by an angry and violent mob armed with explosives. No. 28. the instant petitions have been rendered moot and academic. the authorities may only resort to warrantless arrests of persons suspected of rebellion. 2001] THE LABAN NG DEMOKRATIKONG PILIPINO. bladed weapons. May 10. 2001.LEANDRO MENDOZA and P/SR. THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE. As to petitioners claim that the proclamation of a state of rebellion is being used by the authorities to justify warrantless arrests. respondents. apprehensions as to In quelling or suppressing the rebellion. with prayer for a temporary restraining order filed by Miriam Defensor- Santiago.R. Accordingly.R.R. [G.R. which allegedly gave a semblance of legality to the arrests. 147781 for mandamus and/or review of the factual basis for the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus. 1 directing the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine National Police to suppress the rebellion in the National Capital Region. p. (3) G. 147810 for certiorari and prohibition filed by the political party Laban ng Demokratikong Pilipino. vs. No. GENERAL DIOMEDIO VILLANUEVA. No. 38. THE PHILIPPINE NATIONAL POLICE. (2) G.R. Significantly.: On May 1. Indeed.

Rule 65. a matter which remains speculative up to this very day.Moreover. Such an individual may ask for a preliminary investigation under Rule 112 of the Rules of court. Balweg.R. until the instant petition is finally resolved. And in the event that the same are later filed. Aquino. It is basic in matters relating to petitions for mandamus that the legal right of the petitioner to the performance of a particular act which is sought to be compelled must be clear and complete. G. No. No. This relief is clearly premature considering that as of this date. and 147799 (Lumbao Petition) that they are under imminent danger of being arrested without warrant do not justify their resort to the extraordinary remedies of mandamus and prohibition. G.R. petitioners Lacson. and Mancao pray that the appropriate court before whom the informations against petitioners are filed be directed to desist from arraigning and proceeding with the trial of the case. The are not even expressing intention to leave the country in the near future. otherwise the arresting officer could be held liable for delay in the delivery of detained persons. Mandamus will not issue the right to relief is clear at the time of the award (Palileo v. petitioner Defensor-Santiago has not shown that she is in imminent danger of being arrested without a warrant. since an individual subjected to warrantless arrest is not without adequate remedies in the ordinary course of law. 200 SCRA 149 [1991]). the person arrested can charge the arresting officer with arbitrary detention. it is to be noted that petitioners are not directly assailing the validity of the subject hold departure orders in their petition. Rules of Court). 147781 (Defensor-Santiago Petition). Ruiz Castro. this court cannot enjoin criminal prosecution conducted in accordance with the Rules of Court. 147781 The petition herein is denominated by petitioner DefensorSantiago as one for mandamus. G.R. a person subject of a warrantless arrest must be delivered to the proper judicial authorities within the periods provided in Article 125 of the Revised Penal Code. no complaints or charges have been filed against any of the petitioners for any crime. As regards petitioners prayer that the hold departure orders issued against them be declared null and void ab initio. 272). for by that time any arrest would have been in pursuance of a duly issued warrant. it is manifest that the writ is not called for since its purpose is to relieve petitioners from unlawful restraint (Ngaya-an v. In point of fact. All this is without prejudice to his filing an action for damages against the arresting officer under Article 32 of the Civil Code. petitioners contention in G. several considerations likewise inevitably call for the dismissal of the petitions at bar. Should the detention be without legal ground. 147780 In connection with their alleged impending warrantless arrest. No. No. Verily. 147780 (Lacson Petition). Anent petitioners allegations ex abundante ad cautelam in support of their application for the issuance of a writ of habeas corpus. 85 Phil. or he may submit himself to inquest proceedings to determine whether or not he should remain under custody and correspondingly be charged in court.R. petitioners have a surfeit of other remedies which they can avail themselves of. 147799 47 . where he may adduce evidence in his defense. Up to the present time. Aside from the foregoing reasons. thereby making the prayer for prohibition and mandamus improper at this time (Sections 2 and 3. The prayer to set aside the same must be made in proper proceedings initiated for that purpose. the authorities have categorically stated that petitioner will not be arrested without a warrant. Further.

We disagree. Petitioner is a juridical person not subject to arrest. G. Zamora. or whose legal right is under imminent threat of invasion or infringement. 2000): xxx The factual necessity of calling out the armed forces is not easily quantifiable and cannot be objectively established since matters considered for satisfying the same is a combination of several factors which are not always accessible to the courts. in a proper case. petitioner has not demonstrated any injury to itself which would justify resort to the Court. Nor is it alleged that its leaders. 239 SCRA 386 [1994]). and that the declaration of a state of rebellion cannot be an exception to the general rule on the allocation of the governmental powers.. At best. we held in Integrated Bar of the Philippines v. 38 having been lifted. petitioner claiming that its right to freedom of expression and freedom of assembly is affected by the declaration of a state of rebellion and that said proclamation is invalid for being contrary to the Constitution. it cannot claim to be threatened by a warrantless arrest. No.Petitioner Lumbao. Article VII of the Constitution expressly provides that [t]he President shall be the Commander-in-Chief of all armed forces of the Philippines and whenever it becomes necessary. members.R. and supporters are being threatened with warrantless arrest and detention for the crime of rebellion. 48 . mandamus. However. quo warranto. 2001. No. and habeas corpus. the President as Commander-in-Chief has a vast intelligence network to gather information. 22-23) The Court. Section 5[1]. Certain pertinent information might be difficult to verify. The rule requires that a party must show a personal stake in the outcome of the case or an injury to himself that can be redressed by a favorable decision so as to warrant an invocation of the courts jurisdiction and to justify the exercise of the courts remedial powers in his behalf (KMU Labor Center v. Proclamation No. (G. this Court not having jurisdiction in the first instance over such a petition. argues that the declaration of a state of rebellion is violative of the doctrine of separation of powers. this is no longer feasible at this time. he may call out such armed forces to prevent or suppress lawless violence. 147810 Petitioner Laban ng Demoktratikong Pilipino is not a real partyin-interest. prohibition. Every action must be brought in the name of the party whose legal right has been invaded or infringed. to consider the petition as one for declaratory relief affords little comfort to petitioner. section 18. Thus. or wholly unavailable to the courts. leader of the Peoples Movement against Poverty (PMAP). Garcia. Jr. In many instances. Hon. 141284. Here. and over petitions for certiorari. On the other hand. However. In the exercise of the power to call. information necessary to arrive at such judgment might also prove unmanageable for the courts. xxx (at pp. other public ministers and consuls. the instant petition may be considered as an action for declaratory relief. for his part. being an encroachment on the domain of the judiciary which has the constitutional prerogative to determine or interpret what took place on May 1. some of which may be classified as highly confidential or affecting the security of the state. invasion or rebellion thus. Certain pertinent information necessary to arrive at such judgment might also prove unmanageable for the courts. may look into the sufficiency of the factual basis of the exercise of this power. Article VIII of the Constitution limits the original jurisdiction of the Court to cases affecting ambassadors.R. August 15. Besides the absence of testual standards that the court may use to judge necessity. the evidence upon which the President might decide that there is a need to call out the armed forces may be of a nature not constituting technical proof. on-the-spot decisions may be imperatively necessary in emergency situations to avert great loss of human lives and mass destruction of property. To be sure.

respondents.WHEREFORE. EXECUTIVE 49 . DIR. Pardo. vs. Davide. Kapunan. No. GEN.. 159085.. 159103. petitioners. HON. C. JJ. are hereby enjoined from arresting petitioners therein without the required judicial warrant for all acts committed in relation to or in connection with the May 1. EN BANC [G. JJ. see separate opinion. 2001 siege of Malacanang. 147781. Bellosillo. SAMSON S. and all persons acting for and in their behalf. Ynares-Santiago. Bautista. Puno.R. ALCANTARA. No. 2004] SOCIAL JUSTICE SOCIETY (SJS) OFFICERS/MEMBERS namely. Vitug. 2004] SANLAKAS. and De Leon. RENATO MAGTUBO petitioners. February 3.EXECUTIVE SECRETARY SECRETARY ANGELO REYES. see dissenting opinion. represented by REP. Jr. vs. ED VINCENT S.. Quisumbing. However. [G. Jr.V. February 3. and Sandoval-Gutierrez. and PARTIDO NG MANGGAGAWA. consistent and congruent with their undertaking earlier adverted to. on leave.R. 147780. Mendoza.. concur. Kapunan. the petitions are hereby DISMISSED. respondents. representatives. Buena. MAPILE. No. SO ORDERED.. JJ. Panganiban. and Gonzaga-Reyes. in G. RENE B.R. ALBANO. and 147799. EDWIN R.. together with their agents. GENERAL NARCISO ABAYA. premises considered.J. join the dissent of J. J. J. HERMOGENES EBDANE. J. SANDOVAL and RODOLFO D... GOROSPE. represented by REP.

 GLORIA MACAPAGAL­ARROYO. 4 in accordance  with Section 18. Bewailing the corruption in the AFP. these misguided elements of the Armed Forces of the  Philippines are being supported. REP. and EXECUTIVE SECRETARY ALBERTO G. ROMULO. 159185. MITRA. Article VII of the Constitution. ABRAHAM KAHLIL B. Proclamation No. PADILLA. AS EXECUTIVE SECRETARY. the Secretary of Defense and the Chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP). SECRETARY ANGELO REYES. [G. SUPLICO. 2004] REP.SECRETARY ALBERTO G.  wholly or partially. both declaring a state of rebellion and calling out the Armed Forces to suppress the rebellion. abetted and aided by known and unknown  leaders. put bombs in the area. the soldiers demanded.R. J. NOW. SECRETARY JOSE LINA. the resignation of the President. PRESIDENT GLORIA MACAPAGAL-ARROYO. SECRETARY JOSE LINA. I. the President. hereby confirm the existence of an actual  and on­going rebellion. 427 reads in full: PROCLAMATION NO.  as amended. GENERAL NARCISO ABAYA. conspirators and plotters in the government service and outside the  government. and continue to rise publicly and show open  hostility. REP. 4.  have seized a building in Makati City. petitioner. 2004] AQUILINO Q. 427 and General Order No. THEREFORE. CELSO L. acting upon the  instigation and command and direction of known and unknown leaders. HUSSIN U. GEORGILU R. vs. 2003.. calling out the Armed  Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine National Police to immediately  50 .: They came in the middle of the night. HON. Article VII of the present Constitution. SECRETARY OF JUSTICE SIMEON DATUMANONG. February 3. SECRETARY OF NATIONAL DEFENSE ANGELO REYES. No. JR. of her powers and prerogatives which constitute the  crime of rebellion punishable under Article 134 of the Revised Penal Code. I am issuing General Order No.. AMIN. 427 DECLARING A STATE OF REBELLION WHEREAS. some three hundred junior officers and enlisted men of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) stormed into the Oakwood Premiere apartments in Makati City in the wee hours of July 27. In view of the foregoing. et al. respondents. February 3. No. [G. petitioners. compelling me to declare a state of rebellion. respondents. by virtue of  the powers vested in me by law. and took arms against the duly  constituted Government. ROLEX T. for the purpose of removing allegiance to the Government certain  bodies of the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine National  Police. publicly  declared withdrawal of support for. the President issued later in the day Proclamation No. Armed with high-powered ammunitions and explosives. JR. ROMULO. EMMYLOU J. HON. DECISION TINGA. TALINO-SANTOS. WHEREAS. as a Member of the Senate.  whenever it becomes necessary. and depriving the President of the Republic of the Philippines. as the Commander­in­Chief  of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.R. under Section 18. REP. and REP. LOBREGAT. vs. 159196.  armed with high­powered firearms and explosives. and HON. certain elements of the Armed Forces of the Philippines. among other things. SECRETARY ALBERTO ROMULO. respondents. YUMULHERMIDA. WHEREAS. AS SECRETARY OF NATIONAL DEFENSE. REP. REP. may call out such Armed Forces to  suppress the rebellion. PIMENTEL. CARLOS M.[1] In the wake of the Oakwood occupation. AS CHIEF OF STAFF OF THE ARMED FORCES.

 the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine National Police were directed to suppress  and quell the rebellion. WHEREAS. 2003. by virtue of General Order No. NOW. through Proclamation No. THEREFORE. by virtue of Proclamation No. 4 is similarly worded: GENERAL ORDER NO. WHEREAS. 51 . WHEREAS. 2003. acting upon the  instigation and command and direction of known and unknown leaders. 4. GLORIA MACAPAGAL­ARROYO.  armed with high­powered firearms and explosives. I hereby direct the Chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the  Chief of the Philippine National Police and the officers and men of the  Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine National Police to  immediately carry out the necessary and appropriate actions and measures  to suppress and quell the rebellion with due regard to constitutional rights. 2003. put bombs in the area. The President. 4 DIRECTING THE ARMED FORCES OF THE PHILIPPINES AND THE PHILIPPINE NATIONAL POLICE TO SUPPRESS REBELLION WHEREAS. After hours-long negotiations. under Section 18. a state  of rebellion was declared. THEREFORE. certain elements of the Armed Forces of the Philippines. hereby declare  that the state of rebellion has ceased to exist. however. Article VII of the present Constitution. these misguided elements of the Armed Forces of the  Philippines are being supported. Section 18 of the Constitution. 2003.carry out the necessary actions and measures to suppress and quell the  rebellion with due regard to constitutional rights. the Oakwood occupation had ended. the soldiers agreed to return to barracks. the President. 427 dated July 27. as amended. the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine  National Police have effectively suppressed and quelled the rebellion. by virtue of  the powers vested in me by the Constitution as President of the Republic of  the Philippines and Commander­in­Chief of all the armed forces of the  Philippines and pursuant to Proclamation No. and took arms against the duly  constituted Government. 435: DECLARING THAT THE STATE OF REBELLION HAS CEASED TO EXIST WHEREAS. By the evening of July 27. of her powers and prerogatives which constitute the  crime of rebellion punishable under Article 134 et seq. 2003.  wholly or partially. by virtue of the powers vested in me by law. I. I. as the Commander­in­Chief  of all Armed Forces of the Philippines. GLORIA MACAPAGAL­ARROYO. 427 dated July 27. General Order No. publicly  declared withdrawal of support for. of the Revised Penal  Code. which  was issued on the basis of Proclamation No. do  hereby call upon the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine  National Police to suppress and quell the rebellion. may call out such Armed Forces to  suppress the rebellion.  whenever it becomes necessary. and  pursuant to Article VII.  have seized a building in Makati City. for the purpose of removing allegiance to the Government certain  bodies of the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine National  Police. and continue to rise publicly and show open  hostility. did not immediately lift the declaration of a state of rebellion and did so only on August 1. conspirators and plotters in the government service and outside the  government. and depriving the President of the Republic of the Philippines. abetted and aided by known and unknown  leaders. 427 dated July 27. NOW. WHEREAS. President of  the Philippines. In the interim. 4 dated July 27. 2003. several petitions were filed before this Court challenging the validity of Proclamation No. 427 and General Order No.

R. we seize this opportunity to finally lay to rest the validity of the declaration of a state of rebellion in the exercise of the Presidents calling out power.[15] Petitioners in G. [16] In addition. To prevent similar questions from reemerging. President MacapagalArroyo and Executive Secretary Romulo). Romulo.As a rule. stones and other deadly weapons assaulted and attempted to break into Malacaang. et al. clubs. Article VII of the Constitution does not require the declaration of a state of rebellion to call out the armed forces.). [11] They argue.[8] Finally. et al. 159185 (Rep. Executive Secretary. so is the power of each  member thereof. they contend that the presidential issuances cannot be construed as an exercise of emergency powers as Congress has not delegated any such power to the President. No. courts will decide a question. firearms. there exists no sufficient factual basis for the proclamation by the President of a state of rebellion for an indefinite period. have standing to challenge the subject issuances. 159196 (Pimentel v.[18] Nevertheless.[5] Like Sanlakas and PM.R. 38 and General Order No.[7] Petitioners also submit that the proclamation is a circumvention of the report requirement under the same Section 18. 159085 (Sanlakas and PM v. Only petitioners Rep. et al.[4] that the declaration of a state of rebellion opens the door to the unconstitutional implementation of warrantless arrests for the crime of rebellion. the President lifted the same. an angry and violent mob armed with explosives. 1. Pimentel. Five days after such declaration.[6] They contend that the declaration is a constitutional anomaly that confuses. if it is capable of repetition yet evading review. acting pursuant to such proclamation or general order.) are officers/members of the Social Justice Society (SJS). Hon. Executive Secretary.). they claim that Section 18.R. bladed weapons. 159103 (SJS Officers/Members v. petitioner fears Required to comment. has rendered the case moot. Article VII. the Solicitor General questions the standing of the petitioners to bring suit. petitioner Senator assails the subject presidential issuances as an unwarranted. Suplico et al. Article VI of the Constitution. powers and functions were allegedly affected by the declaration of a state of rebellion. because of the cessation of the Oakwood occupation. No. [12] Such exercise. that the declaration of a state of rebellion is a superfluity. judicial power being limited to the determination of actual controversies. illegal and abusive exercise of a martial law power that has no basis under the Constitution. since his office confers a right to participate in the exercise of the powers of that institution. 52 . Article VII of the Constitution does not authorize the declaration of a state of rebellion. 435. it is contended. [14] In the main. contend that Section 18. the Solicitor General argues that the petitions have been rendered moot by the lifting of the declaration.[3] They further submit that. however. [20] Petitions were filed before this Court assailing the validity of the Presidents declaration. the mootness of the petitions notwithstanding. No. commanding the President to submit a report to Congress within 48 hours from the proclamation of martial law.In G. The mootness of the petitions in Lacson v. law professors and bar reviewers.R. Suplico et al. declaring that the state of rebellion has ceased to exist. [10] Petitioners do not challenge the power of the President to call out the Armed Forces. Filipino citizens. and is actually an exercise of emergency powers. On that occasion. In G. and Sen.[19] The case at bar is one such case. otherwise moot. Enriquez. Perez and accompanying cases[21] precluded this Court from addressing the constitutionality of the declaration. however. courts do not adjudicate moot cases.[9] The Court agrees with the Solicitor General that the issuance of Proclamation No. amounts to a usurpation of the power of Congress granted by Section 23 (2). [13] In G.[17] Once before.[2] party-list organizations Sanlakas and Partido ng Manggagawa (PM). [22] this Court recognized that: To the extent the powers of Congress are impaired. In Philippine Constitution Association v. 2001 declared a state of rebellion and called upon the AFP and the PNP to suppress the rebellion through Proclamation No. the President on May 1. No. petitioners brought suit as citizens and as Members of the House of Representatives whose rights. are liable to violate the constitutional right of private citizens. taxpayers. confounds and misleads because [o]verzealous public officers. v. as Members of Congress.

 and welfare of the people. that their right  to effective and reasonable participation at all levels of social. whose standing this Court rejected in Lacson v. especially the  poor and marginalized classes and sectors of Philippine society. Petitioner Members of Congress claim that the declaration of a state of rebellion by the President is tantamount to an exercise of Congress emergency powers. Petitioners also maintain that the declaration is a subterfuge to avoid congressional scrutiny into the Presidents exercise of martial law powers. of the citizens. 3.[24][Emphasis in the original. members. as a vehicle to publicly ventilate their  grievances and legitimate demands and to mobilize public opinion to  support the same. uphold. Morato: [26] The Constitution provides that the State shall respect the role of  independent peoples organizations to enable the people to pursue and  protect.] Petitioner party-list organizations claim no better right than the Laban ng Demokratikong Pilipino. other  public ministers and consuls. 15­16) 53 . it cannot claim to be threatened by a warrantless arrest. interests. which can be questioned by a  member of Congress. any member of Congress can have a  resort to the courts. Petitioners  are committed to defend and assert human rights. Article VIII of the Constitution limits the original jurisdiction of the court to cases affecting ambassadors. thus impairing the lawmakers legislative powers. this Court not having jurisdiction in the first instance  over such a petition. as this Court made clear in Kilosbayan v. political. The gist of the question of standing is whether a party alleges such personal stake in the outcome of the controversy as to assure that concrete adverseness which sharpens the presentation of issues upon which the court depends for illumination of difficult constitutional questions. However.[25] Even assuming that petitioners are peoples organizations. and supporters are being threatened  with warrantless arrest and detention for the crime of rebellion.An act of the Executive which injures the institution of Congress causes a  derivative but nonetheless substantial injury. and habeas corpus. their legitimate and collective  interests and aspirations through peaceful and lawful means. and SJS Officers/Members. and over petitions for certiorari.  prohibition. Every action must be brought in the name of the party whose legal rights has been  invaded or infringed. Legal standing or locus standi has been defined as a personal and substantial interest in the case such that the party has sustained or will sustain direct injury as a result of the governmental act that is being challenged. including political and  civil rights. Members of the petitioner organizations resort to mass actions and  mobilizations in the exercise of their Constitutional rights to peaceably  assemble and their freedom of speech and of expression under Section 4. to consider the petition as one for declaratory relief affords little  comfort to petitioner. Petitioners Sanlakas and PM. petitioners are committed to assert. (Art. protect. As a basic principle of the organizations and as an important plank in  their programs. Petitioner is a juridical person not subject to  arrest. quo warranto. Nor is  it alleged that its leaders. Perez: petitioner has not demonstrated any injury to itself which would justify the  resort to the Court. defend. have no legal standing or locus standi to bring suit. within the democratic framework. the instant petition may be considered as an action for declaratory  relief.  Article III of the 1987 Constitution. mandamus. XIII. Thus.  and promote the rights. petitioner claiming that it[]s right to freedom of expression and  freedom of assembly is affected by the declaration of a state of rebellion  and that said proclamation is invalid for being contrary to the Constitution. At best. and  economic decision­making shall not be abridged.[23] Petitioners Sanlakas and PM assert that: 2. In such a case. Section 5 [1]. this status would not vest them with the requisite personality to question the validity of the presidential issuances. or whose legal right is under imminent threat of  invasion or infringement.

During the suspension of the privilege of the writ. extend such proclamation or  suspension for a period to be determined by the Congress. Even granting these petitioners have standing on the ground that the issues they raise are of transcendental importance. It is true that for the purpose of exercising the calling out power the Constitution does not require the President to make a declaration of a state of rebellion. and the injury is likely to be redressed by a favorable action. A taxpayer may bring suit where the act complained of directly involves the illegal disbursement of public funds derived from taxation. and the power to declare martial law. a sequence of graduated power[s]. within twenty­four hours following  such proclamation or suspension. shall. Section 18. nor authorize the conferment of the jurisdiction on military courts and agencies  over civilians where civil courts are able to function. The suspension of the privilege of the writ shall apply only to persons  judicially charged for rebellion or offenses inherent in or directly connected  with invasion. The President shall be the Commander­in­Chief of all armed forces of the Philippines and whenever it becomes necessary. A state of martial law does not suspend the operation of the Constitution. convene in accordance with its rules  without need of a call. he may call out  such armed forces to prevent or suppress lawless violence. namely.[29]Again.  by a vote of at least a majority of all its Members in regular or special  session. voting jointly. which revocation  shall not be set aside by the President. no such injury is alleged in this case.  the Congress may. Upon the initiative of the President. VIII. these are: the calling out power. The Congress. The Supreme Court may review.[27] That petitioner SJS officers/members are taxpayers and citizens does not necessarily endow them with standing. In the exercise of the latter two powers. 18. otherwise he shall  be released. even in cases involving  constitutional questions. an actual invasion or rebellion. suspend the privilege of  the writ of habeas corpus or place the Philippines or any part thereof under  martial law. the Constitution requires the concurrence of two conditions. On the other hand. may revoke such proclamation or suspension. in the same manner. [Emphasis supplied. and that public safety requires the exercise of such power. in an appropriate proceeding filed by any  citizen. It is what differentiates decisionmaking in the courts from  decisionmaking in the political departments of the government and bars the  bringing of suits by just any party. The jurisdiction of this Court. is limited by the case and controversy requirement  of Art. In case of invasion or rebellion. as Commander-inChief. invasion or  rebellion. nor automatically  suspend the privilege of the writ. he may. Article VII provides: Sec. The Congress. a citizen will be allowed to raise a constitutional question only when he can show that he has personally suffered some actual or threatened injury as a result of the allegedly illegal conduct of the government. if not in session. when the public safety requires  it. for a period not exceeding sixty days. 5. any person thus arrested  or detained shall be judicially charged within three days. [30] From the most to the least benign. the President shall submit a  report in person or in writing to the Congress. the power to suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus. the sufficiency of the factual basis for the proclamation of martial  law or the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus or the  extension thereof. the petitions must fail. [28] No such illegal disbursement is alleged.] The above provision grants the President. This requirement lies at the very heart of the judicial  function. and must promulgate its decision thereon within thirty  days from its filing.[31] However. if the invasion or  rebellion shall persist and public safety requires it. as we observed in Integrated Bar of the 54 . as the case may be. Within forty­eight hours from the proclamation of martial law  or the suspension of the writ of habeas corpus. may invoke the  judicial power.  nor supplant the functioning of the civil courts or legislative assemblies. the injury is fairly traceable to the challenged action.These provisions have not changed the traditional rule that only real parties in interest or those with standing.

Article VII of the 1987 Philippine Constitution states: The executive power shall be vested in the President. prohibited South Carolina citizens from obeying them after a certain date in 1833. was President Andrew Jackson. first and foremost. President of the above-quoted provisions. Are you ready to incur its guilt? [37] 55 . and dared them. as juxtaposed against the corresponding action of the U. as well as the presidential oath of office.[33] Nevertheless. . was the first President to champion the indissolubility of the Union by defeating South Carolinas nullification effort. His task of enforcement would not be easy. . is instructive. . He wrote: . . which are drawn chiefly from the Executive Power and The Federal Tariff Acts of 1828 and 1832 that Congress enacted did not pacify the hotspurs from South Carolina. Commander-in-Chief provisions. as President not only kept faith with the people by driving the patricians from power. . . As if by exposition. as he was fondly called.S. Then in a Proclamation he issued on December 10. Section 2.S. he shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed. . it is equally true that Section 18. [36] In a letter to a friend. . Commander-in-Chief. Article II of which states in part: Section 1. Section 17 of the same Article provides: He shall ensure that the laws be faithfully executed.[34] Section 1. Chief of Foreign Relations and Chief of Public Opinion. The only criterion is that whenever it becomes necessary. Section 3. [35] Jackson bided his time. Constitution granting the U. [Article II  Executive Power] Recalling in historical vignettes the use by the U. with Executive powers. Article VII does not expressly prohibit the President from declaring a state of rebellion. 1832. . the President serves as Chief of State or Chief of Government.[32] [t]hese conditions are not required in the exercise of the calling out power.S. The Legislature then implemented the Ordinance with bristling punitive laws aimed at any who sought to pay or collect customs duties. . Zamora. Note that the Constitution vests the President not only with Commander-in-Chief powers but. which would not occur in the instance.S. or to destroy the Union. and provided no enforcement machinery against violation by a State. The specific provisions of the U. he called upon South Carolinians to realize that there could be no peaceable interference with the execution of the laws. the balance of the people composing this Union have a perfect right to coerce them to obedience. . Its State Legislature ordered an election for a convention. Jackson. Jackson prepared to ask Congress for a force bill. 1.Philippines v. Coming to office by virtue of a political revolution. First to find definitive new piers for the authority of the Chief of State. Technically. The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and  Navy of the United States. But these laws were aimed at individual citizens. when a faction in a State attempts to nullify a constitutional law of Congress. . disunion by armed force is treason. the President gave the essence of his position. as the protector of the people. The provisions trace their history to the Constitution of the United States. The Ordinance declared the Tariff Acts unconstitutional. Old Hickory. The President could also send troops to see to it that the laws enacted by Congress were faithfully executed. whose members quickly passed an Ordinance of Nullification. . 1. and threatened secession if the Federal Government sought to oppose the tariff laws. Clad with the prerogatives of the office and endowed with sovereign powers. Supreme Court. the President may call the armed forces to prevent or suppress lawless violence. President executive and commander-in-chief powers have remained in their original simple form since the Philadelphia Constitution of 1776. The Executive Power shall be vested in a President of the  United States of America . invasion or rebellion. . the President might send troops into a State only if the Governor called for help to suppress an insurrection. . .

The injunction banned all picketing and distribution of handbills. . then the mere fact that the Government has no pecuniary interest in the controversy is not sufficient to exclude it from the Courts. insurrection. [40] Elected in 1884. For leading the strikes and violating the injunction.S. the U. He seized upon the Presidents designation by the Constitution as Commander-in-Chief. Still. Soon. et al. Lincoln declared that the Executive found the duty of employing the war power in defense of the government forced upon him. Their first service. it grew into an independent power under which he felt authorized to suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus. the claimants contended that under 56 . Cleveland sent federal troops to Illinois to quell striking railway workers who defied a court injunction. as Abraham Lincoln. the grant of the power was incorporated in the 1935 Constitution. and the President announced that the national voice from Maine on the north to Louisiana on the south had declared nullification and accession confined to contempt and infamy. international law. the Supreme Court upheld Lincolns right to act as he had. it is only that body that could impose a blockade and all prizes seized before the legislative declaration were illegal. Although his Proclamation was subsequently validated by Congress. places and property. Debs. 1861. and restore reoccupied States. and sought some source of executive power not failed by misuse or wrecked by sabotage. who was the union president. issue the Emancipation Proclamation.[46] Lincoln embraced the Jackson concept of the Presidents independent power and duty under his oath directly to represent and protect the people. or any disturbance of peaceful citizens. any destruction of or interference with property. Grover Cleveland took his ascent to the presidency to mean that it made him the trustee of all the people. Brought to the Supreme Court. which he practiced during his incumbency. . and are in respect of matters which by the Constitution are entrusted to the care of the Nation and concerning which the Nation owes the duty to all citizens of securing to them their common rights. a blockade could be instituted only as a measure of war under the sovereign power of the State. the principal issue was by what authority of the Constitution or statute had the President to send troops without the request of the Governor of the State. was convicted of contempt of court.[41] In In Re: Eugene Debs. so it went on. He could not but perform the duty or surrender the existence of the Government . or prevent it from taking measures therein to fully discharge those Early in 1863. The decision was handed in the celebratedPrize Cases[42] which involved suits attacking the Presidents right to legally institute a blockade. whenever wrongs complained of are such as affect the public at large. State Legislatures began to adopt resolutions of agreement. taking care to avoid any devastation.000 troops. In his Message of July 4. The United States introduced the expanded presidential powers in the Philippines through the Philippine Bill of 1902. Supreme Court approved President Lincolns report to use the war powers without the benefit of Congress. to be validated by Congress when it assembled. and enfeebled by personal and political handicaps so daunting.[38] No other President entered office faced with problems so formidable. or rebellion came to be recognized and accepted. Since under the Constitution only Congress is exclusively empowered to declare war. coupled it to the executive power provision and joined them as the war power which authorized him to do many things beyond the competence of Congress. By a 5 to 4 vote. called for 75. [43] Lincoln believed the Presidents power broad and that of Congress explicit and restricted. in case of invasion. according to the proclamation. Guided by the maxim that Public office is a public trust. This concept began as a transition device. Presidents power to call out armed forces and suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus without prior legislative approval. In less than two-years. would be to recapture forts. non-nullifiers and tightrope walkers. It ruled that it is not the governments province to mix in merely individual present controversies. the U. .The Proclamation frightened nullifiers. [47] Lincolns Proclamation of April 15.S.[39] In the course of time. [44] The use of the power was put to judicial test and this Court held that the case raised a political question and said that it is beyond its province to inquire into the exercise of the power. 1861.[48] the Supreme Court upheld the contempt conviction.[45] Later.

constitutional duties.[49] Thus, Clevelands course had the Courts
attest.
Taking off from President Cleveland, President Theodore
Roosevelt launched what political scientists dub the stewardship
theory. Calling himself the steward of the people, he felt that the
executive power was limited only by the specific restrictions and
prohibitions appearing in the Constitution, or impleaded by Congress
under its constitutional powers.[50]
The most far-reaching extension of presidential power T.R. ever
undertook to employ was his plan to occupy and operate
Pennsylvanias coal mines under his authority as Commander-inChief. In the issue, he found means other than force to end the 1902
hard-coal strike, but he had made detailed plans to use his power as
Commander-in-Chief to wrest the mines from the stubborn operators,
so that coal production would begin again.[51]
Eventually, the power of the State to intervene in and even take
over the operation of vital utilities in the public interest was
accepted. In the Philippines, this led to the incorporation of Section 6,
[52]
Article XIII of the 1935 Constitution, which was later carried over
with modifications in Section 7, [53] Article XIV of the 1973
Constitution, and thereafter in Section 18, [54] Article XII of the 1987
Constitution.
The lesson to be learned from the U.S. constitutional history is
that the Commander-in-Chief powers are broad enough as it is and
become more so when taken together with the provision on
executive power and the presidential oath of office. Thus, the
plenitude of the powers of the presidency equips the occupant with
the means to address exigencies or threats which undermine the
very existence of government or the integrity of the State.
In The Philippine Presidency A Study of Executive Power, the
late Mme. Justice Irene R. Cortes, proposed that the Philippine
President was vested with residual power and that this is even
greater than that of the U.S. President. She attributed this distinction
to the unitary and highly centralized nature of the Philippine
government. She noted that, There is no counterpart of the several
states of the American union which have reserved powers under the

United States constitution. Elaborating on the constitutional basis for
her argument, she wrote:
. The [1935] Philippine [C]onstitution establishes the three departments of 
the government in this manner: The legislative power shall be vested in a 
Congress of the Philippines which shall consist of a Senate and a House of 
Representatives. The executive power shall be vested in a President of the 
Philippines. The judicial powers shall be vested in one Supreme Court and 
in such inferior courts as may be provided by law. These provisions not 
only establish a separation of powers by actual division but also confer 
plenary legislative, executive, and judicial powers. For as the Supreme 
Court of the Philippines pointed out in Ocampo v. Cabangis, a grant of 
legislative power means a grant of all the legislative power; and a grant of 
the judicial power means a grant of all the judicial power which may be 
exercised under the government. If this is true of the legislative power 
which is exercised by two chambers with a combined membership [at that 
time] of more than 120 and of the judicial power which is vested in a 
hierarchy of courts, it can equally if not more appropriately apply to the 
executive power which is vested in one official the president. He personifies
the executive branch. There is a unity in the executive branch absent from 
the two other branches of government. The president is not the chief of 
many executives. He is the executive.His direction of the executive branch 
can be more immediate and direct than the United States president because 
he is given by express provision of the constitution control over all 
executive departments, bureaus and offices.[55]
The esteemed Justice conducted her study against the
backdrop of the 1935 Constitution, the framers of which, early on,
arrived at a general opinion in favor of a strong Executive in the
Philippines.[56] Since then, reeling from the aftermath of martial law,
our most recent Charter has restricted the Presidents powers as
Commander-in-Chief. The same, however, cannot be said of the
Presidents powers as Chief Executive.
In her ponencia in Marcos v. Manglapus, Justice Cortes put her
thesis into jurisprudence. There, the Court, by a slim 8-7 margin,
upheld the Presidents power to forbid the return of her exiled
predecessor. The rationale for the majoritys ruling rested on the
Presidents

57

unstated residual powers which are implied from the grant of executive 
power and which are necessary for her to comply with her duties under the 
Constitution. The powers of the President are not limited to what are 
expressly enumerated in the article on the Executive Department and in 
scattered provisions of the Constitution. This is so, notwithstanding the 
avowed intent of the members of the Constitutional Commission of 1986 to 
limit the powers of the President as a reaction to the abuses under the 
regime of Mr. Marcos, for the result was a limitation of specific powers of 
the President, particularly those relating to the commander­in­chief clause, 
but not a diminution of the general grant of executive power.
[57]
 [Underscoring supplied. Italics in the original.]
Thus, the Presidents authority to declare a state of rebellion
springs in the main from her powers as chief executive and, at the
same time, draws strength from her Commander-in-Chief
powers. Indeed, as the Solicitor General accurately points out,
statutory authority for such a declaration may be found in Section 4,
Chapter 2 (Ordinance Power), Book III (Office of the President) of the
Revised Administrative Code of 1987, which states:
SEC. 4. Proclamations. Acts of the President fixing a date or declaring a 
status or condition of public moment or interest, upon the existence of 
which the operation of a specific law or regulation is made to depend, 
shall be promulgated in proclamations which shall have the force of an 
executive order. [Emphasis supplied.]
The foregoing discussion notwithstanding, in calling out the
armed forces, a declaration of a state of rebellion is an utter
superfluity.[58] At most, it only gives notice to the nation that such a
state exists and that the armed forces may be called to prevent or
suppress it.[59] Perhaps the declaration may wreak emotional effects
upon the perceived enemies of the State, even on the entire
nation. But this Courts mandate is to probe only into the legal
consequences of the declaration. This Court finds that such a
declaration is devoid of any legal significance. For all legal intents,
the declaration is deemed not written.
Should there be any confusion generated by the issuance of
Proclamation No. 427 and General Order No. 4, we clarify that, as

the dissenters in Lacson correctly pointed out, the mere declaration
of a state of rebellion cannot diminish or violate constitutionally
protected rights.[60] Indeed, if a state of martial law does not suspend
the operation of the Constitution or automatically suspend the
privilege of the writ of habeas corpus,[61] then it is with more reason
that a simple declaration of a state of rebellion could not bring about
these conditions.[62] At any rate, the presidential issuances
themselves call for the suppression of the rebellion with due regard
to constitutional rights.
For the same reasons, apprehensions that the military and
police authorities may resort to warrantless arrests are likewise
unfounded. In Lacson vs. Perez, supra, majority of the Court held
that [i]n quelling or suppressing the rebellion, the authorities may
only resort to warrantless arrests of persons suspected of rebellion,
as provided under Section 5, Rule 113 of the Rules of Court, [63] if the
circumstances so warrant. The warrantless arrest feared by
petitioners is, thus, not based on the declaration of a state of
rebellion.[64] In other words, a person may be subjected to a
warrantless arrest for the crime of rebellion whether or not the
President has declared a state of rebellion, so long as the requisites
for a valid warrantless arrest are present.
It is not disputed that the President has full discretionary power
to call out the armed forces and to determine the necessity for the
exercise of such power. While the Court may examine whether the
power was exercised within constitutional limits or in a manner
constituting grave abuse of discretion, none of the petitioners here
have, by way of proof, supported their assertion that the President
acted without factual basis.[65]
The argument that the declaration of a state of rebellion
amounts to a declaration of martial law and, therefore, is a
circumvention of the report requirement, is a leap of logic.There is no
indication that military tribunals have replaced civil courts in the
theater of war or that military authorities have taken over the
functions of civil government. There is no allegation of curtailment of
civil or political rights. There is no indication that the President has
exercised judicial and legislative powers. In short, there is no
illustration that the President has attempted to exercise or has
exercised martial law powers.

58

Nor by any stretch of the imagination can the declaration
constitute an indirect exercise of emergency powers, which exercise
depends upon a grant of Congress pursuant to Section 23 (2), Article
VI of the Constitution:

Callejo, Sr., J., concurs in the separate opinion of J.
Panganiban.
Azcuna, J., on official leave.

Sec. 23. (1) .
(2) In times of war or other national emergency, the Congress may, by law, 
authorize the President, for a limited period and subject to such restrictions 
as it may prescribe, to exercise powers necessary and proper to carry out a 
declared national policy. Unless sooner withdrawn by resolution of the 
Congress, such powers shall cease upon the next adjournment thereof.
The petitions do not cite a specific instance where the President
has attempted to or has exercised powers beyond her powers as
Chief Executive or as Commander-in-Chief.The President, in
declaring a state of rebellion and in calling out the armed forces, was
merely exercising a wedding of her Chief Executive and
Commander-in-Chief powers.These are purely executive powers,
vested on the President by Sections 1 and 18, Article VII, as opposed
to the delegated legislative powers contemplated by Section 23 (2),
Article VI.
WHEREFORE, the petitions are hereby DISMISSED.
SO ORDERED.

Carpio, Corona, and Carpio-Morales, JJ., concur.
Davide, Jr., C.J., in the result.
Puno, J., in the result.
Vitug, J., see separate opinion.
Panganiban, J., see separate opinion.
Quisumbing, J., joins J. Panganibans Opinion.
Ynares-Santiago, J., see separate opinion.
Sandoval-Gutierrez, J., please see dissenting
opinion.
Austria-Martinez, J., concur in the result.

SEPARATE OPINION
VITUG, J.:
I am in complete agreement, eloquently expressed in
the ponencia, that a declaration of a state of rebellion is an utter
superfluity, which, at most, merely gives notice that such a state
exists and that the armed forces may be called to prevent or
suppress it. I also agree that the declaration of a state of rebellion
does not diminish constitutionally protected rights.
I find it necessary to emphasize, however, that while this Court
considers the proclamation of the state of rebellion as being
essentially devoid of any legal significance, it is not, however, to be
understood as countenancing the commission of acts ostensibly in
pursuance thereof but which may, in themselves, be violative of
fundamental rights.Indeed, the warrantless arrests and searches, to
which my colleague Mme. Justice Ynares-Santiago made reference
in her dissenting opinion, may not necessarily find justification in the
bare proclamation.
I vote for the dismissal of the petitions.

SEPARATE OPINION
PANGANIBAN, J.:
Petitioners challenge the constitutionality of the state of rebellion
declared by the President through Proclamation No. 427 and
General Order No. 4 in the wake of the so-called Oakwood Incident.

59

The questioned issuances, however, were subsequently lifted by her
on August 1, 2003, when she issued Proclamation No. 435. Hence,
as of today, there is no more extant proclamation or order that can be
declared valid or void.

adverse interests.[7] Neither do courts sit to adjudicate academic
questions no matter how intellectually challenging [8] because without
a justiciable controversy, an adjudication would be of no practical use
or value.[9]

For this reason, I believe that the Petitions should be dismissed
on the ground of mootness.

While the Petitions herein have previously embodied a live case
or controversy, they now have been rendered extinct by the lifting of
the questioned issuances. Thus, nothing is gained by breathing life
into a dead issue.

The judicial power to declare a law or an executive order
unconstitutional, according to Justice Jose P. Laurel, is limited to
actual cases and controversies to be exercised after full opportunity
of argument by the parties, and limited further to the constitutional
question raised or the very lis mota presented.[1] Following this longheld principle, the Court has thus always been guided by these
fourfold requisites in deciding constitutional law issues: 1) there must
be an actual case or controversy involving a conflict of rights
susceptible of judicial determination; 2) the constitutional question
must be raised by a proper party; 3) the constitutional question must
be raised at the earliest opportunity; and 4) adjudication of the
constitutional question must be indispensable to the resolution of the
case.[2]
Unquestionably, the first and the forth requirements are absent
in the present case.

Absence of Case and Controversy
The first requirement, the existence of a live case or
controversy, means that an existing litigation is ripe for resolution and
susceptible of judicial determination; as opposed to one that is
conjectural or anticipatory,[3] hypothetical or feigned.[4] A justiciable
controversy involves a definite and concrete dispute touching on the
legal relations of parties having adverse legal interests. [5] Hence, it
admits of specific relief through a decree that is conclusive in
character, in contrast to an opinion which only advises what the law
would be upon a hypothetical state of facts.[6]
As a rule, courts have no authority to pass upon issues through
advisory opinions or friendly suits between parties without real

Moreover, without a justiciable controversy, the Petitions [10] have
become pleas for declaratory relief, over which the Supreme Court
has no original jurisdiction. Be it remembered that they were filed
directly with this Court and thus invoked its original jurisdiction. [11]
On the theory that the state of rebellion issue is capable of
repetition yet evading review, I respectfully submit that the question
may indeed still be resolved even after the lifting of the Proclamation
and Order, provided the party raising it in a proper case has
been and/or continue to be prejudiced or damaged as a direct
result of their issuance.
In the present case, petitioners have not shown that they have
been or continue to be directly and pecuniarily prejudiced or
damaged by the Proclamation and Order. Neither have they shown
that this Court has original jurisdiction over petitions for declaratory
relief. I would venture to say that, perhaps, if this controversy had
emanated from anappealed judgment from a lower tribunal, then this
Court may still pass upon the issue on the theory that it is capable of
repetition yet evading review, and the case would not be
an original action for declaratory relief.
In short, the theory of capable of repetition yet evading
review may be invoked only when this Court has jurisdiction
over the subject matter. It cannot be used in the present
controversy for declaratory relief, over which the Court has
no original jurisdiction.

The Resolution of the Case on Other Grounds

60

The fourth requisite, which relates to the absolute necessity of
deciding the constitutional issue, means that the Court has no other
way of resolving the case except by tackling an unavoidable
constitutional question. It is a well-settled doctrine that courts will not
pass upon a constitutional question unless it is the lis mota of the
case, or if the case can be disposed on some other grounds. [12]
With due respect, I submit that the mootness of the Petitions
has swept aside the necessity of ruling on the validity of
Proclamation No. 427 and General order No. 4. In the wake of its
mootness, the constitutionality issue has ceased to be the lis mota of
the case or to be an unavoidable question in the resolution
thereof. Hence, the dismissal of the Petitions for mootness is
justified.[13]
WHEREFORE, I vote to DISMISS the Petitions. On the
constitutionality of a state of rebellion, I reserve my judgment at the
proper time and in the proper case.

[1]

Rollo, G.R. No. 159085, p. 7; Rollo, G.R. No. 159103, pp. 4-5; Rollo, G.R.
No. 159185, pp. 4-5; Rollo, G.R. No. 159186, p. 9.

[2]

The Court in a Resolution dated August 5, 2003 (Rollo, G.R. No. 159086,
p. 18) previously dismissed the Sanlakas petition for failure to
attach certified true copies of Proclamation No. 427 and General
Order No. 4, and for failure to explain why service of the petition on
respondents was not made personally. Petitioners subsequently
filed a motion for leave to admit the petition with compliance for
reconsideration, attaching therewith a certified copy of the
impugned Proclamation and General Order. The Court, in a
Resolution dated August 12, 2003 (Id., at 73) granted petitioners
motion for leave and reinstated the petition.

[6]

Id., at 6.

[7]

Id., at 8.

[8]

Id., at 7.

[9]

Ibid.

[10]

Rollo, G.R. No. 159185, p. 5.

[11]

Id., at 10.

[12]

Ibid.

[13]

Ibid.

[14]

Rollo, G.R. No. 159196, p. 7.

[15]

Id., at 17.

[16]

Rollo, G.R. No. 159085, p. 45; Rollo, G.R. No. 159103, p. 23; Rollo, G.R.
No. 159185, p. 22; Rollo, G.R. No. 159186, p. 41.

[17]

Rollo, G.R. No. 159085, pp. 44-45; Rollo, G.R. No. 159103, pp. 2223; Rollo, G.R. No. 159185, pp. 21-22; Rollo, G.R. No. 159186, pp.
40-41.

[18]

CONST., art. VIII, sec. 1; Dumlao v. COMELEC, G.R. No. L-52245,
January 22, 1980, 95 SCRA 392.

[19]

Alunan III v. Mirasol, G.R. No. 108399, July 31, 1997, 276 SCRA 501.

[20]

Lacson v. Perez, G.R. No. 147780, May 10, 2001, 357 SCRA 757, 762.

[21]

Supra.

[22]

G.R. No. 113105, August 19, 1994, 235 SCRA 506.

[23]

Integrated Bar of the Philippines v. Zamora, G.R. No. 141284, August 15,
2000, 338 SCRA 81.

[24]

Rollo, G.R. No. 159085, p. 6.

[25]

Lacson v. Perez, supra, at 766.

[3]

Id., at 10-12.

[26]

G.R. No. 118910, November 19, 1995, 250 SCRA 130.

[4]

Id., at 13-14.

[27]

Id., at 139.

Rollo, G.R. No. 159103, p. 4.

[28]

Bayan (Bagong Alyansang Makabayan) v. Zamora, G.R No. 138570,
October 10, 2000, 342 SCRA 449.

[5]

61

[29]

G.R. No. 132922, April 21, 1998, Telecommunications and Broadcast
Attorneys of the Philippines, Inc. v. Commission on Elections, 289
SCRA 337.

[30]

II Record of the Constitutional Commission 409.

[31]

Integrated Bar of the Philippines v. Zamora, supra at 110.

[32]

Ibid.

[33]

In the Philippines, the President is called the Chief Executive.

[34]

Milton, The Use of Presidential Power, 1789-1943, pp. 73, 86-90.

[35]

Id., at 91.

[36]

Id., at 92.

[37]

Ibid.

[38]

Milton, at 91-92.

[39]

Id., at 109.

[40]

Ibid.

[41]

Ibid.

[42]

2 Black 635, 17 L. 459 (1863).

[43]

Milton, at 110.

[44]

A paragraph of section 5 of the act of the U.S. Congress of July 1, 1902,
otherwise known as the Philippine Bill of 1902, provides: That the
privilege of the writ of habeas corpus shall not be suspended,
unless when in cases of rebellion, insurrection, or invasion the
public safety may require it, in either of which events the same may
be suspended by the President, or by the Governor-General with
the approval of the Philippine Commission, whenever during such
period the necessity for such suspension shall exist.

[45]

Barcelon v. Baker, 5 Phil. 87, 103 (1905).

[46]

Sec. 10, Art. VII, 1935 CONST.

[47]

Milton, 168-170; Peter Irons, A PEOPLES HISTORY OF THE SUPREME
COURT, Published by the Penguin Group: New York, N.Y. , 1999,
pp. 245-247.

[48]

158 U.S. 1092 (1894).

[49]

[50]

Id., at 1103.
Milton, at 110. In An Autobiography, Roosevelt wrote:

The most important factor in getting the right spirit in my Administration, next
to the insistence upon courage, honesty, and a genuine democracy
of desire to serve the plain people, was my insistence upon the
theory that the executive power was limited only by specific
restrictions and prohibitions appearing in the Constitution or
imposed by the Congress under its Constitutional powers. My view
was that every executive officer, and above all, executive officer in
high position was a steward of the people, and not to content
himself with the negative merit of keeping his talents undamaged in
a napkin. I declined to adopt the view that what was imperatively
necessary for the Nation could not be done by the President unless
he could find some specific authorization to do it. My belief was that
it was not only his right but his duty to do anything that the needs of
the Nation demanded unless such action was forbidden by the
Constitution or by the laws. Under this interpretation of the
executive power, I did and caused to be done many things not
previously done by the President and the heads of the
Departments. I did not usurp power, but I did greatly broaden the
use of executive power. In other words, I acted for the public
welfare, I acted for the common well-being of all our people,
whenever and in whatever manner was necessary, unless
prevented by direct constitutional or legislative prohibition. I did not
care a rap for the mere form and show of power; I cared immensely
for the use that could be made of the substance. [An
Autobiography, 389 (1913) New York.]
William Howard Taft took the opposite view. He opined that the President
can exercise no power which cannot be fairly and reasonably
traced to some specific grant of power or justly implied and included
within such express grant as proper and necessary to its
exercise. Such specific grant must be either in the Constitution or in
an act of Congress passed in pursuance thereof. There is no
undefined residuum of power which he can exercise because it
seems to be in the public interest. 50 (Our Chief Magistrate and His
Powers, 139-142 (1916) New York.) Later, however, Taft, as Chief
Justice, would change his view.See Myers v. United States, 272 US
52, 71 L Ed 160, 47 SC 21 (1926), holding that The words of 2,
following the general grant of executive power under 1 were either
an enumeration of specific functions of the Executive, not all
inclusive, or were limitations upon the general grant of the
executive power, and as such, being limitations, should not be
enlarged beyond the words used.

62

[51]

Milton, at 179.

[64]

Lacson v. Perez, supra, at 763.

[52]

The State may, in the interest of national welfare and defense, establish
and operate industries and means of transportation and
communication, and upon payment of just compensation, transfer
to public ownership utilities and other private enterprises to be
operated by the Government.

[65]

IBP v. Zamora, supra.

[53]

In times of national emergency when the public interest so requires, the
State may temporarily take over and direct the operation of any
privately owned public utility or business affected with public
interest.

[54]

In times of national emergency when the public interest so requires, the
State may, during the emergency and under reasonable terms
prescribed by it, temporarily take over or direct the operation of any
privately owned public utility or business affected with public
interest.

[55]

Cortes, THE PHILIPPINE PRESIDENCY, A STUDY OF EXECUTIVE
POWER, pp. 68-69.

[56]

I

[57]

Marcos v. Manglapus, G.R. No. 88211, October 27, 1989, 178 SCRA 760,
763-764.

[58]

See Lacson v. Perez, supra, Kapunan, J., dissenting, at 773, 776.

[59]

Ibid.

[60]

Ibid.

[61]

CONST., art. VII, sec. 18.

[62]

Lacson v. Perez, supra, Sandoval-Gutierrez dissenting, at 792-793.

[63]

SEC. 5. Arrests without warrant; when lawful. A police officer or a private
person may, without a warrant, arrest a person:

Arugeo, THE
FRAMING
OF
CONVENTION 397 (1949) Manila.

THE

CONSTITUTIONAL

EN BANC
G.R. No. 164978 October 13, 2005

(a) When, in his presence, the person to be arrested has committed, or is
actually committing, or is attempting to commit an offense;
(b) When an offense has just been committed and he has probable cause to
believe based on personal knowledge of facts or circumstances that
the person to be arrested has committed it;
.

AQUILINO Q. PIMENTEL, JR., EDGARDO J. ANGARA, JUAN
PONCE ENRILE, LUISA P. EJERCITO-ESTRADA, JINGGOY E.
ESTRADA, PANFILO M. LACSON, ALFREDO S. LIM, JAMBY A.S.
MADRIGAL, and SERGIO R. OSMEÑA III, Petitioners
vs.
EXEC. SECRETARY EDUARDO R. ERMITA, FLORENCIO B.
ABAD, AVELINO J. CRUZ, JR., MICHAEL T. DEFENSOR,
JOSEPH H. DURANO, RAUL M. GONZALEZ, ALBERTO G.
ROMULO, RENE C. VILLA, and ARTHUR C. YAP, Respondents.
DECISION

63

Michael T. Villa Agrarian Reform 23 August 2004 Antecedent Facts Joseph H.. Cruz. was constituted on 25 August 2004.CARPIO. J. Rene C. Villa.: The Case This is a petition for certiorari and prohibition1 with a prayer for the issuance of a writ of preliminary injunction to declare unconstitutional the appointments issued by President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo ("President Arroyo") through Executive Secretary Eduardo R. Yap ("respondents") as acting secretaries of their respective departments. DEPARTMENT OF (appropriate department) vice (name of person replaced). Arthur C. The Commission on Appointments. Gonzalez Justice 23 August 2004 (signed) Gloria Arroyo 64 . Avelino J. Joseph H. composed of Senators and Representatives. Durano Tourism 23 August 2004 The Senate and the House of Representatives ("Congress") commenced their regular session on 26 July 2004. Raul M. Alberto G. Defensor. National Defense 23 August 2004 Rene C. Yap Agriculture 15 August 2004 By virtue hereof. Cruz. Florencio B. Romulo. you are hereby appointed ACTING SECRETARY. President Arroyo issued appointments2 to respondents as acting secretaries of their respective departments. you may qualify and enter upon the performance of the duties and functions of the office. Jr. furnishing this Office and the Civil Service Commission with copies of your Oath of Office. The petition also seeks to prohibit respondents from performing the duties of department secretaries. Ermita ("Secretary Ermita") to Florencio B. Romulo Foreign Affairs 23 August 2004 Raul M. Michael T. Jr. Gonzalez. and Arthur C. Abad Education 23 August 2004 Avelino J. Durano. Defensor Environment and Natural Resources 23 August 2004 The appointment papers are uniformly worded as follows: Sir: Appointee Department Date of Appointment Pursuant to the provisions of existing laws. Abad. Meanwhile. Alberto G.

Osmeña. ("Senator Pimentel"). DEPARTMENT OF (appropriate department). On the Nature of the Power to Appoint The power to appoint is essentially executive in nature. Preliminary Matters On the Mootness of the Petition The Solicitor General argues that the petition is moot because President Arroyo had extended to respondents ad interim appointments on 23 September 2004 immediately after the recess of Congress.4 However. On 23 September 2004. Juan Ponce Enrile ("Senator Enrile"). III ("Senator Osmeña") ("petitioners") filed the present petition as Senators of the Republic of the Philippines. President Arroyo issued ad interimappointments3 to respondents as secretaries of the departments to which they were previously appointed in an acting capacity. Jinggoy E. The Court’s Ruling The petition has no merit. The question of the constitutionality of the President’s appointment of department secretaries in an acting capacity while Congress is in session will arise in every such appointment. Jamby A. Angara ("Senator Angara"). Jr.7 The scope of the legislature’s interference in the executive’s power to appoint is limited to the power to prescribe the qualifications to an appointive office. (signed) Gloria Arroyo Issue The petition questions the constitutionality of President Arroyo’s appointment of respondents as acting secretaries without the consent of the Commission on Appointments while Congress is in session. By virtue hereof.S. courts will decide a question otherwise moot if it is capable of repetition yet evading review. you are hereby appointed SECRETARY [AD INTERIM]. On 8 September 2004. and Sergio R. Ejercito-Estrada ("Senator Ejercito-Estrada"). and the legislature may not interfere with the exercise of this executive power except in those instances when the Constitution expressly allows it to interfere. As a rule.5 In the present case. Panfilo M.6 Limitations on the executive power to appoint are construed strictly against the legislature. Aquilino Q. Neither may Congress impose on the President the duty to appoint any particular person to an office. The appointment papers are uniformly worded as follows: Sir: Pursuant to the provisions of existing laws. Luisa P. Edgardo J. you may qualify and enter upon the performance of the duties and functions of the office. Alfredo S. furnishing this Office and the Civil Service Commission with copies of your oath of office. Lim ("Senator Lim"). Pimentel. the writ of prohibition will not lie to enjoin acts already done. the mootness of the petition does not bar its resolution.Respondents took their oath of office and assumed duties as acting secretaries. as an exception to the rule on mootness. Madrigal ("Senator Madrigal"). Congress cannot appoint a person to an office in the guise of prescribing qualifications to that office.8 65 . Congress adjourned on 22 September 2004. Estrada ("Senator Estrada"). Lacson ("Senator Lacson").

Senator Ejercito-Estrada. only the following are members of the Commission on Appointments of the 13th Congress: Senator Enrile as Minority Floor Leader.The Undersecretary shall: xxx 66 . .14 which enumerates the powers and duties of the undersecretary. the functions of the Commissioner are purely executive in nature. since his office confers a right to participate in the exercise of the powers of that institution. On Petitioners’ Standing The Solicitor General states that the present petition is a quo warranto proceeding because. Book IV of Executive Order No. on the other hand. and Senator Angara. and Madrigal. Lim. said Commission is independent of Congress. The powers of the Commission do not come from Congress. Executive Secretary12 as basis. who. thus: Petitioners contend that President Arroyo should not have appointed respondents as acting secretaries because "in case of a vacancy in the Office of a Secretary. Although its membership is confined to members of Congress. SEC. In fact. Chapter 2. Angara. xxx9 An act of the Executive which injures the institution of Congress causes a derivative but nonetheless substantial injury. it is error for petitioners to claim standing in the present case as members of Congress. Among the petitioners. it is not an agent of Congress. on the impairment of the prerogatives of members of the Commission on Appointments. This is in contrast to Senators Pimentel.11 Petitioners further contend that they possess standing because President Arroyo’s appointment of department secretaries in an acting capacity while Congress is in session impairs the powers of Congress. The Commission on Appointments does not legislate when it exercises its power to give or withhold consent to presidential appointments. Thus: xxx The Commission on Appointments is a creature of the Constitution." 10 Thus. xxx If at all. state that the Court can exercise its certiorari jurisdiction over unconstitutional acts of the President. Petitioners cite Sanlakas v. 10. President Arroyo’s issuance of acting appointments while Congress is in session impairs no power of Congress. Paragraph 5 of Section 10 reads: To the extent that the powers of Congress are impaired. which can be questioned by a member of Congress. even if the Commission on Appointments is composed of members of Congress. Lacson. possess no standing in the present petition. 292 ("EO 292"). Estrada. the Commission on Appointments as a body (rather than individual members of the Congress) may possess standing in this case."13 Petitioners base their argument on Section 10. any member of Congress can have a resort to the courts.However. petitioners effectively seek to oust respondents for unlawfully exercising the powers of department secretaries. but emanate directly from the Constitution. Powers and Duties of the Undersecretary. Senator Lacson as Assistant Minority Floor Leader. and Osmeña have standing in the present petition. and Senator Osmeña as members. Hence. with the exception of Secretary Ermita. though vigilant in protecting their perceived prerogatives as members of Congress. it is only an Undersecretary who can be designated as Acting Secretary. In such a case. Considering the independence of the Commission on Appointments from Congress. Ejercito-Estrada. the exercise of its powers is executive and not legislative. The Solicitor General further states that petitioners may not claim standing as Senators because no power of the Commission on Appointments has been "infringed upon or violated by the President. The Constitutionality of President Arroyo’s Issuance of Appointments to Respondents as Acting Secretaries Petitioners. so is the power of each member thereof. only Senators Enrile.

and other officers whose appointments are vested in him in this Constitution. with his existing salary. when: (a) the officer regularly appointed to the office is unable to perform his duties by reason of illness. and xxx Petitioners further assert that "while Congress is in session. by law. The essence of an appointment in an acting capacity is its temporary nature. in the courts. agencies. Petitioners assert that the President cannot issue appointments in an acting capacity to department secretaries while Congress is in session because the law does not give the President such power. Chapter 5. Power to Issue Temporary Designation. SEC. Respondents also rely on EO 292. and those whom he may be authorized by law to appoint. the Secretary shall allocate the foregoing powers and duties among them. The President shall nominate and. commissions. or in the heads of departments. The Congress may. Section 16 reads: SEC. Article VII of the 1987 Constitution. He shall also appoint all other officers of the Government whose appointments are not otherwise provided for by law. 16. there can be no appointments. vest the appointment of other officers lower in rank in the President alone. or (b) there exists a vacancy[. The President shall have the power to make appointments during the recess of the Congress. other public ministers and consuls. with the consent of the Commission on Appointments.(5) Temporarily discharge the duties of the Secretary in the latter’s absence or inability to discharge his duties for any cause or in case of vacancy of the said office. Sections 16 and 17. — The President shall exercise the power to appoint such officials as provided for in the Constitution and laws. 16 In case of vacancy in an office occupied by an alter ego of the 67 . unless otherwise provided by law. respondents insist that the President can issue such appointments because no law prohibits such appointments. appoint the heads of the executive departments. ambassadors. 16. Respondents point to Section 16. absence or any other cause. whether regular or acting. appointment to which is vested in him by law. unless he is already in the government service in which case he shall receive only such additional compensation as. whether voluntary or compulsory. which devotes a chapter to the President’s power of appointment. Book III of EO 292 read: SEC. It is a stop-gap measure intended to fill an office for a limited time until the appointment of a permanent occupant to the office. respondents maintain that the President can issue appointments in an acting capacity to department secretaries without the consent of the Commission on Appointments even while Congress is in session. The compensation hereby authorized shall be paid out of the funds appropriated for the office or agency concerned. Title I. or officers of the armed forces from the rank of colonel or naval captain. Where there are more than one Undersecretary. — (1) The President may temporarily designate an officer already in the government service or any other competent person to perform the functions of an office in the executive branch." 15 In sharp contrast. without first having obtained its consent. In contrast. to a vacant position of an office needing confirmation by the Commission on Appointments. (3) In no case shall a temporary designation exceed one (1) year. The President shall likewise make the temporary designation of Acting Secretary from among them. 17. but such appointments shall be effective only until disapproval by the Commission on Appointments or until the next adjournment of the Congress. shall not exceed the salary authorized by law for the position filled. (Emphasis supplied) Petitioners and respondents maintain two diametrically opposed lines of thought. or boards. Power of Appointment.] (2) The person designated shall receive the compensation attached to the position.

as long as the President deems that person competent. ANTONIO T. Section 17. cannot impose on the President the obligation to appoint automatically the undersecretary as her temporary alter ego. cannot impose on the President who heralter ego should be. Moreover ad-interim appointments are submitted to the Commission on Appointments for confirmation or rejection. the President must appoint in an acting capacity a person of her choice even while Congress is in session. by the very nature of the office of a department secretary. and judicial decisions. in the guise of prescribing qualifications to an office. Book III of EO 292 states that "[t]he President may temporarily designate an officer already in the government service or any other competent person to perform the functions of an office in the executive branch." Thus. way before the lapse of one year. The law expressly allows the President to make such acting appointment. the President may even appoint in an acting capacity a person not yet in the government service. Title I. "Law" refers to the Constitution. like the use of acting appointments as a way to circumvent confirmation by the Commission on Appointments. such as the office of a department secretary. Title I. Thus. because it only applies to appointments vested in the President by law. The law has incorporated this safeguard to prevent abuses. Since a department secretary is the alter ego of the President. 17 Finally. whereas acting appointments may be extended any time there is a vacancy. CARPIO Associate Justice 68 . That person may or may not be the permanent appointee. holds a position of great trust and confidence. implementing rules issued pursuant to law. Congress. The office of a department secretary may become vacant while Congress is in session. a noted textbook writer on constitutional law has observed: Ad-interim appointments must be distinguished from appointments in an acting capacity. acting appointments are not submitted to the Commission on Appointments. petitioners claim that the issuance of appointments in an acting capacity is susceptible to abuse. SO ORDERED. Both of them are effective upon acceptance. we DISMISS the present petition for certiorari and prohibition. An alter ego. the acting appointee to the office must necessarily have the President’s confidence. The absence of abuse is readily apparent from President Arroyo’s issuance of ad interim appointments to respondents immediately upon the recess of Congress. statutes or acts of Congress. Petitioners forget that Congress is not the only source of law. Book III of EO 292. if abused. municipal ordinances.President. but practical reasons may make it expedient that the acting appointee will also be the permanent appointee. In distinguishing ad interim appointments from appointments in an acting capacity. whether temporary or permanent. WHEREFORE. they can also be a way of circumventing the need for confirmation by the Commission on Appointments. But ad-interim appointments are extended only during a recess of Congress. Chapter 5. Congress. Chapter 5. we find no abuse in the present case. through a law. the President must necessarily appoint an alter ego of her choice as acting secretary before the permanent appointee of her choice could assume office. Petitioners assert that Section 17 does not apply to appointments vested in the President by the Constitution. Acting appointments are a way of temporarily filling important offices but. Petitioners fail to consider that acting appointments cannot exceed one year as expressly provided in Section 17(3).18 However.

19 August 1994. 148179.R. 65. 343 Phil. Jr. Alonto. 211 (1966). 22 June 1993. TINGA MINITA V. Secretary Guingona. 12. G. Flores v.R. Jr. No. No. CORONA CONCHITA CARPIO MORALES Associate Justice Associate Justice ROMEO J. pp. Jr. 45-60. See Marohombsar v. G." Rollo. Footnotes 14 Also known as the "Administrative Code of 1987. But see Justice Concepcion’s Concurring Opinion in Guevara v.R. 421 SCRA 656 citing Philippine Constitution Association v. 903 (1954). 104732. Tan. 10 May 1962. 11 Ibid. 123 Phil.R. 15 2 Rollo. G. G. 194 SCRA 390. 433 Phil. SR. Alunan III. p. Mison. 148334. 7 See Sarmiento III v.J. Chief Justice 13 Rollo.. Tolentino v. 420 SCRA 438 citing Chief Supt. Quitoriano.R. No. Mirasol. p. 159085. Commission on Elections. 17 December 1987. CHICO-NAZARIO Associate Justice Associate Justice CANCIO C. 148334. Acop v. DAVIDE. The 1987 Constitution of the Republic of the Philippines: A Commentary 768 (1996). L-79974. L-19721. 62 (2002). 9 Cunanan v. 3 February 2004. 25 February 1991. AZCUNA Associate Justice Associate Justice DANTE O. 93711. 5 Tolentino v. 342 Phil. 235 SCRA 506. Bernas. Alunan III v. G. JR. 223 SCRA 568. 1 Under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court. 420 SCRA 438 citing Gil v. p.R. 467 (1997). Hon. 16 3 Rollo. G. No.. p. Commission on Elections. No. 5 SCRA 1.. 10 Rollo. Enriquez. Drilon. ADOLFO S. PUNO ARTEMIO V. G. No. No... Inocentes. JR. 184 (1997). PANGANIBAN Associate Justice Associate Justice LEONARDO A. Viola v. 21 January 2004. Benipayo. ALICIA AUSTRIA-MARTINEZ Associate Justice Associate Justice RENATO C. 69 . 21 January 2004.4 WE CONCUR: HILARIO G. No. 156 SCRA 549. Chief Justice REYNATO S. 38. it is hereby certified that the conclusions in the above Decision were reached in consultation before the case was assigned to the writer of the opinion of the Court. 201.R. Article VIII of the Constitution. HILARIO G.R. 8 See Manalang v. 113105. 26 June 2001 (minute resolution). No. et al. S. CALLEJO. 94 Phil.. DAVIDE. 21-28. 12 G. 14. pp. GARCIA Associate Justice CERTIFICATION Pursuant to Section 13. QUISUMBING CONSUELO YNARES-SANTIAGO Associate Justice Associate Justice ANGELINA SANDOVAL-GUTIERREZ MA. 6 See Joaquin G.

BELLOSILLO.T. LUCRECIA R. Civil Code. LIGAYA DAVID PEREZ. HARPER. ARMIDA SIGUION REYNA.. and PAZ VETO PLANAS. M. wrote then President Corazon C. CATALINO MACARAIG. vs.T. SUSAN CALO MEDINA. All thirty-five (35) petitioners in this Special Civil Action for Prohibition and Mandamus with Prayer for Preliminary Injunction and/or Restraining Order seek to enjoin the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) from proceeding with the auction sale scheduled on 11 January 1991 by Christie's of New York of the Old Masters Paintings and 18th and 19th century silverware seized from Malacañang and the Metropolitan Museum of Manila and placed in the custody of the Central Bank. Jr. G. ANNA MARIA L. EPHRAIM SAMSON. PATRICIA RUIZ. Manson and Woods International. J. MANDY NAVASERO. AMBASSADOR E. in his official capacity. and/or the Executive Secretary.R. VIRGILIO ALMARIO. requesting her for authority to sign the proposed Consignment Agreement between the Republic of the Philippines through PCGG and Christie. BONNIE RUIZ.M. and such other property as may 70 .: 18 Joaquin G. CARMEN GUERRERO NAKPIL. NELSON NAVARRO. LUCRECIA KASILAG. Bernas.. No. signed the Consignment Agreement with Christie's of New York. On 15 August 1990. JR. On 14 August 1990. authorized Chairman Caparas to sign the Consignment Agreement allowing Christie's of New York to auction off the subject art pieces for and in behalf of the Republic of the Philippines.. ARCEO. then President Aquino. HELENA BENITEZ. JACELA. ANG KIU KOK. IRMA POTENCIANO. S. JR. petitioners. Caparas. LIWAYWAY A. AGUILAR CRUZ. 8 September 2004. EN BANC G. JOSEPHINE DARANG. or CHRISTIE'S) concerning the scheduled sale on 11 January 1991 of eighty-two (82) Old Masters Paintings and antique silverware seized from Malacañang and the Metropolitan Museum of Manila alleged to be part of the ill-gotten wealth of the late President Marcos. Inc. then Chairman of PCGG. Aquino. According to the agreement. PCGG. PCGG shall consign to CHRISTIE'S for sale at public auction the eighty-two (82) Old Masters Paintings then found at the Metropolitan Museum of Manila as well as the silverware contained in seventy-one (71) cartons in the custody of the Central Bank of the Philippines. FEDERICO AGUILAR ALCUAZ. INGRID SANTAMARIA. SUSANO GONZALES. PURUGANAN. respondents. through Chairman Caparas. RICARTE M. The 1987 Constitution of the Republic of the Philippines: A Commentary 772 (1996). MAURO MALANG. The antecedents: On 9 August 1990. 1993 DEAN JOSE JOYA. PRESIDENTIAL COMMISSION ON GOOD GOVERNMENT (PCGG). PROF. ROSALINDA OROSA. No. CAPARAS. Commission on Audit. The Solicitor General for respondents. Mateo A. ROMEO SALVADOR. Lazaro & Associates for petitioners. KERIMA POLOTAN. STEVE SANTOS. CORAZON FIEL. 437 SCRA 655. SOLER SANTOS. CHARITO PLANAS. FLORENCIO R. 156982. and CHAIRMAN MATEO A.. his relatives and cronies.17 Article 8.R. 96541 August 24. (Christie's of New York. through former Executive Secretary Catalino Macaraig. ADRIAN CRISTOBAL. URTULA. representing the Government of the Republic of the Philippines. See National Amnesty Commission v.J.

Ligaya David Perez. the sale at public auction proceeded as scheduled and the proceeds of $13. we wish to emphasize that we admire and commend petitioners' zealous concern to keep and preserve within the country great works of art by well-known old masters. and. Carmen Guerrero Nakpil. Corazon Fiel. Ana Maria L. Ingrid Santamaria. Caparas were impleaded as additional respondents. wrote President Aquino defending the Consignment Agreement and refuting the allegations of COA Chairman Domingo. PCGG through its new Chairman David M. Ricarte M. On 11 January 1991. Susano Gonzales. this petition originally filed on 7 January 1991 by Dean Jose Joya.302. Armida Siguion Reyna. the following were joined as additional petitioners: Charito Planas. Ang Kiu Kok. 2 On 15 November 1990.T. Jacela. Irma Potenciano. Domingo submitted to President Aquino the audit findings and observations of COA on the Consignment Agreement of 15 August 1990 to the effect that: (a) the authority of former PCGG Chairman Caparas to enter into the Consignment Agreement was of doubtful legality. Susan Carlo Medina. Petitioners raise the following issues: (a) whether petitioners have legal standing to file the instant petition. Nelson Navarro. we issued immediately our resolution denying the application for preliminary injunction to restrain the scheduled sale of the artworks on the ground that petitioners had not presented a clear legal right to a restraining order and that proper parties had not been impleaded.. Prof. Federico Aguilar Alcuaz. their disposal was prohibited by law. before proceeding. (c) PCGG had a poor track record in asset disposal by auction in the U. Kerima Polotan. Indeed. and.A. (b) whether the Old Masters Paintings and antique silverware are embraced in the phrase "cultural treasure of the nation" which is under the protection of the state pursuant to the 1987 Constitution and/or "cultural properties" contemplated under R. Soler Santos. On the other hand. However. 3 On the same date. Josephine Darang and Paz Veto Planas. Ambassador E. Bonnie Ruiz. and Chairman Mateo A. (d) the assets subject of auction were historical relics and had cultural significance. Urtula. Florencio R. by serving as a creative medium through which man can express his innermost 71 . (f) whether the petition has become moot and academic. Adrian Cristobal. (e) whether. Helena Benitez. (b) the contract was highly disadvantageous to the government. Castro. the Commission on Audit (COA) through then Chairman Eufemio C. and if so. The issues being interrelated. Steve Santos. Catalino Macaraig. After the oral arguments of the parties on 9 January 1991. Lucrecia R. Harper. they will be discussed jointly hereunder.. Jr. Aguilar Cruz. Mauro Malang. Romeo Salvador. Lucrecia Kasilag. in his capacity as former Executive Secretary. otherwise known as "The Cultural Properties Preservation and Protection Act. Virgilio Almario and Liwayway A. 1 On 26 October 1990. Patricia Ruiz.604. Director of National Museum Gabriel S. the value of art cannot be gainsaid. Jr. Mandy Navasero. For.subsequently be identified by PCGG and accepted by CHRISTIE'S to be subject to the provisions of the agreement. whether the above issues warrant resolution from this Court. hence. on motion of petitioners. Arceo. Rosalinda Orosa. the incumbent Executive Secretary." (c) whether the paintings and silverware are properties of public dominion on which can be disposed of through the joint concurrence of the President and Congress.4 Hence. (d) whether respondent..S. Ephraim Samson. Casal issued a certification that the items subject of the Consignment Agreement did not fall within the classification of protected cultural properties and did not specifically qualify as part of the Filipino cultural heritage.86 were turned over to the Bureau of Treasury. Puruganan. 4846. PCGG has complied with the due process clause and other statutory requirements for the exportation and sale of the subject items. 5 On 5 February 1991. PCGG has the jurisdiction and authority to enter into an agreement with Christie's of New York for the sale of the artworks.

" And. Marcos. Such artistic creations give us insights into the artists' cultural heritage — the historic past of the nation and the era to which they belong — in their triumphant. 12 Petitioners' arguments are devoid of merit.A. XIV. we have held that one having no right or interest to protect cannot invoke the jurisdiction of the court as partyplaintiff in an action. or a mere incidental interest. as well as troubled and turbulent years. that the question must be raised at the earliest possible opportunity. They themselves allege that the paintings were donated by private persons from different parts of the world to the Metropolitan Museum of Manila Foundation. and that all persons having interest in the subject of the action and in obtaining the relief demanded shall be joined as plaintiffs. petitioners invoke this policy of the state on the protection of the arts. But. 6 But the most important are the first two (2) requisites. They allege that with the unauthorized act of PCGG in selling the art pieces. Sec. 10 and when a taxpayer questions the validity of a governmental act authorizing the disbursement of public funds. It must be for this reason that the framers of the 1987 Constitution mandated in Art. Rule 3. the ownership of these paintings legally belongs to the foundation or corporation or the members thereof. while its president was Bienvenido R. that the decision on the constitutional or legal question must be necessary to the determination of the case itself. art has become a true expression of beauty.thoughts and unbridled emotions while. 2. the interest of the party plaintiff must be personal and not one based on a desire to vindicate the constitutional right of some third and related party. The term "interest" is material interest. 4846 known as "The Cultural Properties Preservation and Protection Act. Tantoco. 9 There are certain instances however when this Court has allowed exceptions to the rule on legal standing. particularly Art. XIV." governing the preservation and disposition of national and important cultural properties. an interest in issue and to be affected by the decree. Secs. that there must be an actual case or controversy. and dynamic evolution of a Filipino national culture based on the principle of unity in diversity in a climate of free artistic and intellectual expression. "Legal standing" means a personal and substantial interest in the case such that the party has sustained or will sustain direct injury as a result of the governmental act that is being challenged. 11 Petitioners claim that as Filipino citizens. On the first requisite. namely: that the question must be raised by the proper party. They lack basis in fact and in law. enrichment. 8 Moreover. and life itself. glorious. in urging this Court to grant their petition. and R. 7 This is premised on Sec. although the public has been 72 . they have the legal personality to restrain respondents Executive Secretary and PCGG from acting contrary to their public duty to conserve the artistic creations as mandated by the 1987 Constitution. that is the solemn duty of the state to "foster the preservation. and. which is a non-profit and non-stock corporations established to promote non-Philippine arts. on Arts and Culture. Petitioners also anchor their case on the premise that the paintings and silverware are public properties collectively owned by them and by the people in general to view and enjoy as great works of art. as when a citizen brings a case for mandamus to procure the enforcement of a public duty for the fulfillment of a public right recognized by the Constitution. The rule is settled that no question involving the constitutionality or validity of a law or governmental act may be heard and decided by the court unless there is compliance with the legal requisites for judicial inquiry. taxpayers and artists deeply concerned with the preservation and protection of the country's artistic wealth. as distinguished from mere interest in the question involved. 14. there is that basic legal question which must first be resolved: whether the instant petition complies with the legal requisites for this Court to exercise its power of judicial review over this case. of the Rules of Court which provides that every action must be prosecuted and defended in the name of the real party-in-interest. the altruistic and noble purpose of the petition notwithstanding. joy. 14 to 18. petitioners have been deprived of their right to public property without due process of law in violation of the Constitution. at the same time. reflecting his deep-seated ideals. The foundation's chairman was former First Lady Imelda R. On this basis. The Court will exercise its power of judicial review only if the case is brought before it by a party who has the legal standing to raise the constitutional or legal question.

Civil Service Commission. that although the sale of the paintings and silver has long been consummated and the possibility of retrieving the treasure trove is nil. 15 For a court to exercise its power of adjudication. petitioners' claim for the continued enjoyment and appreciation by the public of the artworks is at most a privilege and is unenforceable as a constitutional right in this action for mandamus. Moreover. The confiscation of these properties by the Aquino administration however should not be understood to mean that the ownership of these paintings has automatically passed on the government without complying with constitutional and statutory requirements of due process and just compensation. 13 this Court laid down the rule that a writ of mandamus may be issued to a citizen only when the public right to be enforced and the concomitant duty of the state are unequivocably set forth in the Constitution. In the case at bar. there must be an actual case of controversy — one which involves a conflict of legal rights. 73 .given the opportunity to view and appreciate these paintings when they were placed on exhibit. petitioners do not possess any clear legal right whatsoever to question their alleged unauthorized disposition. as alleged in the petition. although this action is also one of mandamus filed by concerned citizens. Having failed to show that they are the legal owners of the artworks or that the valued pieces have become publicly owned. the case must not be moot or academic or based on extra-legal or other similar considerations not cognizable by a court of justice. Further. 18We find however that there is no such justification in the petition at bar to warrant the relaxation of the rule. yet the novelty and importance of the issues raised by the petition deserve this Court's attention. Neither can this petition be allowed as a taxpayer's suit. Anent the second requisite of actual controversy. If these properties were already acquired by the government. any constitutional or statutory defect in their acquisition and their subsequent disposition must be raised only by the proper parties — the true owners thereof — whose authority to recover emanates from their proprietary rights which are protected by statutes and the Constitution. it does not fulfill the criteria for a mandamus suit. which may be enjoined at the request of a taxpayer. 16 A case becomes moot and academic when its purpose has become stale. In Legaspi v. 14 Obviously. Similarly. however. They submit that the resolution by the Court of the issues in this case will establish future guiding principles and doctrines on the preservation of the nation's priceless artistic and cultural possessions for the benefit of the public as a whole. It is worthy to note that petitioners admit that the paintings and antique silverware were acquired from private sources and not with public money. What they seek is the enjoining of an official act because it is constitutionally infirmed. petitioners argue that this case should be resolved by this Court as an exception to the rule on moot and academic cases. Not every action filed by a taxpayer can qualify to challenge the legality of official acts done by the government. A taxpayer's suit can prosper only if the governmental acts being questioned involve disbursement of public funds upon the theory that the expenditure of public funds by an officer of the state for the purpose of administering an unconstitutional act constitutes a misapplication of such funds. 17 such as the case before us. petitioners are not challenging any expenditure involving public funds but the disposition of what they allege to be public properties. the issues raised in the petition have become moot and academic. the pieces of antique silverware were given to the Marcos couple as gifts from friends and dignitaries from foreign countries on their silver wedding and anniversary. an occasion personal to them. we need to emphasize that this Court has the discretion to take cognizance of a suit which does not satisfy the requirements of an actual case or legal standing when paramount public interest is involved. an assertion of opposite legal claims susceptible of judicial resolution. Since the purpose of this petition for prohibition is to enjoin respondent public officials from holding the auction sale of the artworks on a particular date — 11 January 1991 — which is long past. When the Marcos administration was toppled by the revolutionary government. At this point. these paintings and silverware were taken from Malacañang and the Metropolitan Museum of Manila and transferred to the Central Bank Museum. petitioners are not after the fulfillment of a positive duty required of respondent officials under the 1987 Constitution.

the cultural properties of the nation which shall be under the protection of the state are classified as the "important cultural properties" and the "national cultural treasures. WHEREAS. it is the Director of the Museum who is authorized to undertake the inventory.A.Section 2 of R. which have passed on to private hands. Petitioners have failed to show that respondents Executive Secretary and PCGG exercised their functions with grave abuse of discretion or in excess of their jurisdiction. 22 In view of the foregoing. cultural. WHEREAS. which has not been disturbed by commercially-minded diggers and collectors. because of this the Philippines has been charged as incapable of preserving and protecting her cultural legacies. 21 Findings of administrative officials and agencies who have acquired expertise because their jurisdiction is confined to specific matters are generally accorded not only respect but at times even finality if such findings are supported by substantial evidence and are controlling on the reviewing authorities because of their acknowledged expertise in the fields of specialization to which they are assigned. of important cultural properties and national cultural treasures. of preserving and protecting the cultural properties of the nation. representing priceless cultural treasure that properly belongs to the Filipino people as their heritage. 374. has reached a point perilously placing beyond reach of savants the study and reconstruction of Philippine prehistory." "Important cultural properties" are cultural properties which have been singled out from among the innumerable cultural properties as having exceptional historical cultural significance to the Philippines but are not sufficiently outstanding to merit the classification of national cultural treasures. under existing laws and regulations. whether government or private property. a "national cultural treasures" is a unique object found locally. the commercialization of Philippine relics from the contact period. and the Paleolithic Age. innumerable sites all over the country have since been excavated for cultural relics. Under the law.A. 4846: WHEREAS. We agree with the certification of the Director of the Museum. WHEREAS. the National Museum has the difficult task. 74 . As to what kind of artistic and cultural properties are considered by the State as involving public interest which should therefore be protected. possessing outstanding historical. any cultural property exported or sold locally must be registered with the National Museum to control the deplorable situation regarding our national cultural properties and to implement the Cultural Properties Law (emphasis supplied). declares it to be the policy of the state to preserve and protect the important cultural properties and national cultural treasures of the nation and to safeguard their intrinsic value. and that regardless of the item. the Neolithic Age. Clearly. registration. with the aid of competent experts. literally destroying part of our historic past.D. 19 On the other hand. this Court finds no compelling reason to grant the petition. it is perhaps impossible now to find an area in the Philippines. as amended by P. 20 This Court takes note of the certification issued by the Director of the Museum that the Italian paintings and silverware subject of this petition do not constitute protected cultural properties and are not among those listed in the Cultural Properties Register of the National Museum. 4846. and WHEREAS. it is believed that more stringent regulation on movement and a limited form of registration of important cultural properties and of designated national cultural treasures is necessary. artistic and/or scientific value which is highly significant and important to this country and nation. WHEREAS. designation or classification. the answer can be gleaned from reading of the reasons behind the enactment of R.

25 January 1991. 16 See Note 6. Philippine Political Law. p. # Footnotes 1 Rollo. Nocon. Joaquin B. Griño-Aquino. Secretary of Public Works. 48-53. Commission on Elections. the petition for prohibition and mandamus is DISMISSED. 95 SCRA 392. L. 28 February 1977. 3 Rollo. Nos. 1991 ed. G. No. v. Puno and Vitug. 18 Dumlao v. Comelec..R. 151 SCRA 703. for lack of merit. Davide. Secretary of Public Works. 2 Rollo. G. Secs. 4846. Jr.63915. G. 235.WHEREFORE. 4 Rollo..R. 22 Biak-na-Bato Mining Company v. II. 5 Ibid. Inc. pp.72119. 75 SCRA 264.. L-29341. pp. Tuvera. 29 May 1987.50245. G. JJ. 136 SCRA 27.R. 8 House International Building Tenants Association. 193 SCRA 323. L. L75287. 5-7. 4846. No. 10 Tañada v. 30 June 1987. Commission.. p. R. 95 SCRA 392. 21 Id. par.R. C. 55-66. 156-157.. Quiason. No. 110 Phil 331 (1960). G. Bidin.R. c. No. 19 Sec. L.. Cruz. Dumlao v.A. 12 Rollo. 2. Isagani A. G. L. 15 Rollo. Romero. par. Melo. No. Feliciano. No. Regalado. p. 24 April 1985. b. G. 7 Sustiguer v. L-34267-68.R. Intermediate Appellate Court. pp. 279. Narvasa. pp. Civil Service 75 . 22 January 1980. L-72119. G. 20 Sec.R. 9 Bernas. as amended. The Constitution of the Republic of the Philippines. 29 May 1987. No. Inc. Padilla.R. 22 January 1980. 21 August 1989. Jr.R. concur.50245. pp. 11 Pascual v. 174-175.. 3. No. 17 Manila Jockey Club. 150 SCRA 530. 186. 1988 Ed. R. SO ORDERED.A. Vol. L-24465. v. 6 Cruz. 176 SCRA 579. 110 Phil 331 (1960).. Tamayo.. as amended. 13 G. 37-39. 150 SCRA 530..J. Legaspi v. Tanco. 14 Pascual v. Montano Jr.

ZOILO HERICO. CONRADO G. MARIFEL CONSTANTINO. DENNIS MANALO. INC. BOÑE. CATAHAN. JOSE MARI B. ROLLY LORICO. in his capacity as Head of the Department of Public Works and Highways. MARY JANE ONG. SECRETARY LEANDRO M. DATUMANONG. ALEX GENERILLO. MANILA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT AUTHORITY. MIASCOR WORKERS UNION-NATIONAL LABOR UNION (MWU-NLU). RAFAEL P. MANILA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT AUTHORITY. CLAVEL A. RICHARD RAMIREZ. DNATA-WINGS AVIATION SYSTEMS CORPORATION. HIZON. JR. MARISSA GAYAGOY. No. vs. and MIASCOR LOGISTICS CORPORATION. ROSEMARIE ANG. WILLIAM VELASCO. PARAS. in his capacity as Head of the Department of Transportation and Communications. EMILIO VELEZ. JANETTE CORDERO. WAYNE PLAZA. ERWIN CALAR. JOSEPH B. MACROASIA-EUREST SERVICES.R. 76 . NOGRALES. MACROASIA-MENZIES AIRPORT SERVICES CORPORATION. MORY V. 155547 January 21. Petitioners-in-Intervention. MENDOZA. MANUEL CABOCAN AND NEDY LAZO. NANTES. ZIALCITA. REMEDIOS P. 2004 SALACNIB F.EN BANC G. DIMAANO. ALDRIN BASTADOR. PHILIPPINE INTERNATIONAL AIR TERMINALS CO. REY AMPOLOQUIO. PHILIPPINE INTERNATIONAL AIR TERMINALS CO. ADOLFO. MIASCOR GROUNDHANDLING CORPORATION. FLORESTE ALCONIS. MINETTE BRAVO. MIASCOR CATERING SERVICES CORPORATION. JOEL MANLANGIT. MARIETTA LINCHOCO. DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION AND COMMUNICATIONS and SECRETARY LEANDRO M. NAGKAISANG MARALITA NG TAÑONG ASSOCIATION.petitioners. NICHOLS MORALES. INC.. RAMIL TAMAYO. INC. NOEL BARTOLOME.. FRANCIS AUGUSTO MACATOL. PROSPERO C. petitioners. DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS AND HIGHWAYS. REUEL E. HAZNAH MENDOZA. CLARA. PHILLIPS TAN. CHARLIE MENDOZA. BIENVENIDO C. MIASCOR AIRCRAFT MAINTENANCE CORPORATION. No. ANDREW UY. MENDOZA. JARAULA. ELIZABETH GRAY. PROSPERO A. NIDA CAILAO. JACINTO V.. ARNOLD FELICITAS. EDUARDO C. WILLY BUYSON VILLARAMA. INC. KAREN BRECILLA. BATERINA.R. LOLITA R. Respondents-in-Intervention. and PHILIPPINE AIRLINES EMPLOYEES ASSOCIATION (PALEA). EUGENE ARADA. DIMALANTA.. in his capacity as Head of the Department of Transportation and Communications.. RAUL MANGALIMAN. AILEEN SAPINA. REUNILLA. CHERYLE MARIE ALFONSO. MARTINEZ and CONSTANTINO G. GINA ALNAS. ROLETTE DIVINE BERNARDO. ALLEN OLAÑO. MICHAEL MALIGAT. respondents. respondents.. and SECRETARY SIMEON A. DOMALAON. CESAR ORTAL. MICHAEL ORTEGA. 2004 DEMOSTHENES P. JOEL JUMAO-AS. 155001 January 21. HILARIO. THELMA INFANTE. Respondents-in-Intervention. MAMERTO S. JACQUELINE IGNACIO. JOSELITO REYES. NOEMI YUPANO. MANUEL ANTONIO B. x-------------------------x G. LYNDON BAUTISTA. NENETTE BARREIRO.. AGAN. ROLANDO REYES. DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION AND COMMUNICATIONS. vs.

INC. LYNDON BAUTISTA. AILEEN SAPINA. RICHARD RAMIREZ. PHILLIPS TAN. MARIETTA LINCHOCO. EMILIO VELEZ. CHERYLE MARIE ALFONSO. CESAR ORTAL. GINA ALNAS. Macaranbon. KAREN BRECILLA. MANUEL CABOCAN AND NEDY LAZO. Respondents-in-Intervention. DINA C. Paras.. AILEEN SAPINA. NIDA CAILAO. VALENCIA. DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION AND COMMUNICATIONS. WILLIAM VELASCO. WILLIAM VELASCO. REY AMPOLOQUIO. Respondents-Intervenors. HAZNAH MENDOZA. and BENASING O..PICHAY. HAZNAH MENDOZA. MARISSA GAYAGOY. MARIETTA LINCHOCO. ROLANDO REYES. PALCON and SAMAHANG MANGGAGAWA SA PALIPARAN NG PILIPINAS (SMPP). ANDREW UY. GINA ALNAS. ROSEMARIE ANG. MENDOZA. Prospero A. respondents-intervenors Jacinto V. JOEL MANLANGIT. ELIZABETH GRAY. RAMON M. Nograles. ALLEN OLAÑO. LYNDON BAUTISTA. Respondents-in-Intervention. all members of the House of Representatives (Respondent Congressmen). NOEL BARTOLOME. CHARLIE MENDOZA. NOEMI YUPANO. MA. ANGELITO SANTOS. ALDRIN BASTADOR. THELMA INFANTE. MARIFEL CONSTANTINO. LEANDRO M. PHILLIPS TAN. EUGENE ARADA. SALES. ALDRIN BASTADOR. ARNOLD FELICITAS. ANDREW UY.. DE LEON.. Inc. JANETTE CORDERO. petitioners. ARNOLD FELICITAS. respondents. MICHAEL ORTEGA. ROLETTE DIVINE BERNARDO. RAUL MANGALIMAN. ALEX GENERILLO. Jr. Rafael P. INC. Respondents-in-Intervention. MA. ROSEMARIE ANG. ALFREDO B. INC. MANILA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT AUTHORITY. Harlin Cast Abayon and Benasing O. MACARANBON. PHILIPPINE INTERNATIONAL AIR TERMINALS CO.. ALLEN OLAÑO. REY AMPOLOQUIO. CHARLIE MENDOZA. ERWIN CALAR. LEONARDO DE LA ROSA. JACQUELINE IGNACIO. ROLANDO REYES. Nantes. RONALD SCHLOBOM. NENETTE BARREIRO.. NOEL BARTOLOME. 155661 January 21. NICHOLS MORALES. RAUL MANGALIMAN. vs. NENETTE BARREIRO. EMILIO VELEZ. RAMIL TAMAYO. DENNIS MANALO. MINETTE BRAVO. VIRGIE CATAMIN. Pichay. ALEX GENERILLO. JANETTE CORDERO. ERWIN CALAR. ELIZABETH GRAY. (PIATCO). KAREN BRECILLA. ZOILO HERICO. EUGENE ARADA. MICHAEL MALIGAT. CHERYLE MARIE ALFONSO. FLORESTE ALCONIS. NOEMI YUPANO. SECRETARY Before this Court are the separate Motions for Reconsideration filed by respondent Philippine International Air Terminals Co. Willie Buyson Villarama. MANUEL CABOCAN AND NEDY LAZO. JOEL JUMAO-AS. ROLLY LORICO. RAMIL TAMAYO. THELMA INFANTE. FRANCIS AUGUSTO MACATOL.. FLORESTE ALCONIS. NAGKAISANG MARALITA NG TAÑONG ASSOCIATION. FRANCIS AUGUSTO MACATOL. ROLETTE DIVINE BERNARDO. NAGKAISANG MARALITA NG TAÑONG ASSOCIATION. MARY JANE ONG. Zialcita. JOEL JUMAO-AS. JOEL MANLANGIT. JR. in his capacity as Head of the Department of Transportation and Communications. GAERLAN. DENNIS MANALO.1 respondents-intervenors who are employees of PIATCO and other workers of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport International Passenger Terminal III (NAIA IPT 77 . ZOILO HERICO. MARIFEL CONSTANTINO. JACQUELINE IGNACIO. J. LUISA M. CESAR ORTAL. HARLIN CAST ABAYON. No.R. WAYNE PLAZA. NIDA CAILAO. NICHOLS MORALES. MARISSA GAYAGOY. JOSELITO REYES. MARY JANE ONG. x-------------------------x RESOLUTION G. 2004 PUNO. TERESA V. Prospero C.: CEFERINO C. RICHARD RAMIREZ. MICHAEL ORTEGA. WAYNE PLAZA. MINETTE BRAVO. Respondents-in-Intervention. Eduardo C. LOPEZ. MICHAEL MALIGAT. JOSELITO REYES. ROLLY LORICO.

this Court granted the said petitions and declared the 1997 Concession Agreement. 1994. signed the "Concession Agreement for the Build-Operate-and-Transfer Arrangement of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Passenger Terminal III" (1997 Concession Agreement). they allege that although designated as petitions for certiorari and prohibition. the 1997 Concession Agreement was superseded by the Amended and Restated Concession Agreement (ARCA) containing certain revisions and modifications from the original contract. (AEDC) submitted an unsolicited proposal to the Philippine Government through the Department of Transportation and Communication (DOTC) and Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) for the construction and development of the NAIA IPT III under a build-operate-and-transfer arrangement pursuant to R. 4 In accordance with the BOT Law and its Implementing Rules and Regulations (Implementing Rules). 2003. Hence. Respondent PIATCO. Phil.A. Inc. Paircargo Consortium). Briefly. Inc.A. Respondent-Congressmen and NMTAI also pray that in the alternative. 1998. 1999. In a decision dated May 5. the DOTC/MIAA invited the public for submission of competitive and comparative proposals to the unsolicited proposal of AEDC. After finding that the Paircargo Consortium submitted a bid superior to the unsolicited proposal of AEDC and after failure by AEDC to match the said bid. they must be remanded to the trial court for reception of evidence. 1997.. On October 5. and the Third Supplement on June 22. No. respondent-Congressmen and respondentsintervenors now seek the reversal of the May 5. (Security Bank) (collectively. On September 20. as amended by R. Supplements) (the 1997 Concession Agreement. In the alternative. through then DOTC Secretary Arturo T. through its President. (NMTAI)3 of the Decision of this Court dated May 5. 6957. and PIATCO. the cases at bar are actually actions for nullity of contracts over which the trial courts have exclusive jurisdiction. A series of supplemental agreements was also entered into by the Government and PIATCO. the ARCA and the Supplements and to prohibit the public respondents DOTC and MIAA from implementing them. Enrile. Air and Grounds Services. PIATCO prays that the Court should not strike down the entire 1997 Concession Agreement. (Paircargo). 2000. the DOTC issued the notice of award for the NAIA IPT III project to the Paircargo Consortium. 2003 declaring the contracts for the NAIA IPT III project null and void. (PAGS) and Security Bank Corp. the ARCA and its supplements in light of their separability clause. PIATCOEmployees pray that the petitions be dismissed and remanded to the trial courts for trial on the merits or in the alternative that the 1997 Concession Agreement. Even assuming that the 78 . various petitions were filed before this Court to annul the 1997 Concession Agreement. No. 2003 decision and pray that the petitions be dismissed. the ARCA and the Supplements be declared valid and binding. They continue to claim that the cases at bar raise factual questions which this Court is ill-equipped to resolve. Inc. Asia’s Emerging Dragon Corp. I Procedural Matters a. Go.. 2001 (collectively. hence. which later organized into herein respondent PIATCO. Henry T. 2002. the ARCA and the Supplements null and void. On September 17. The First Supplement was signed on August 27. the Second Supplement on September 4. 1996 a consortium composed of the People’s Air Cargo and Warehousing Co. the proceedings. submitted their competitive proposal to the Prequalification Bids and Awards Committee (PBAC). ARCA and the Supplements collectively referred to as the PIATCO Contracts). on July 12.III) (PIATCO Employees)2 and respondents-intervenors Nagkaisang Maralita ng Tañong Association. On November 26. Lack of Jurisdiction Private respondents and respondents-intervenors reiterate a number of procedural issues which they insist deprived this Court of jurisdiction to hear and decide the instant cases on its merits. the cases at bar should be referred to arbitration pursuant to the provisions of the ARCA. Further. 7718 (BOT Law). the Government.

On the other hand.Investment Coordinating Committee (NEDAICC) approved the Supplements. and (c) whether the 1997 Concession Agreement departed from the draft Concession Agreement contained in the Bid Documents. The determination of whether a person may institute an action or become a party to a suit brings to fore the concepts of real party in interest. and as the cases concern public interest. they contend that the principle of hierarchy of courts precludes this Court from taking primary jurisdiction over them. There is a question of fact when doubt or difference arises as to the truth or falsity of the facts alleged. the last two issues do not involve disputed facts. Respondents’ corollary contention that this Court violated the hierarchy of courts when it entertained the cases at bar must also fail. litigants are required to repair to the trial courts at the first instance to determine the truth or falsity of these contending allegations on the basis of the evidence of the parties. a strict application of the rule of hierarchy of courts is not necessary. We are not persuaded.cases at bar are special civil actions for certiorari and prohibition. To the legally discerning. respondent PIATCO contends that petitioners failed to show any legally demandable or enforceable right to justify their standing to file the cases at bar. All the operative facts were settled. The rule on hierarchy of courts in cases falling within the concurrent jurisdiction of the trial courts and appellate courts generally applies to cases involving warring factual allegations. We reject the unyielding insistence of PIATCO Employees that the following factual issues are critical and beyond the capability of this Court to resolve. Further. Cases which depend on disputed facts for decision cannot be brought immediately before appellate courts as they are not triers of facts. Legal Standing Respondent PIATCO stands pat with its argument that petitioners lack legal personality to file the cases at bar as they are not real parties in interest who are bound principally or subsidiarily to the PIATCO Contracts.8 As defined in the Rules of Court.5 Even a cursory reading of the cases at bar will show that the Court decided them by interpreting and applying the Constitution.6 The factual issue of whether the NEDA-ICC approved the Supplements is hardly relevant. It is clear in our Decision that the PIATCO contracts were invalidated on other and more substantial grounds. (b) whether the First Supplement created ten (10) new financial obligations on the part of the government. this Court resolved to take primary jurisdiction over them. For this reason. This choice of action follows the consistent stance of this Court to settle any controversy with a high public interest component in a single proceeding and to leave no root or branch that could bear the seeds of future litigation. It did not rely on the presence or absence of NEDA-ICC approval of the Supplements. these three concepts are different although commonly directed towards ensuring that only certain parties can maintain an action. viz: (a) whether the National Economic Development Authority. As the cases at bar merely concern the construction of the Constitution. The suggested remand of the cases at bar to the trial court will stray away from this policy. they involve contractual provisions which are clear and categorical and need only to be interpreted.7 b. These arguments are not difficult to deflect. its Implementing Rules and other relevant legal principles on the basis of clearly undisputed facts. The interpretation of contracts and the determination of whether their provisions violate our laws or contravene any public policy is a legal issue which this Court may properly pass upon. hence. the interpretation of the BOT Law and its Implementing Rules and Regulations on undisputed contractual provisions and government actions. capacity to sue and standing to sue. the BOT Law. Rather. a real party in interest is the party who stands to be benefited 79 . there is no need for a trial type determination of their truth or falsity by a trial court. It goes without saying that when cases brought before the appellate courts do not involve factual but legal questions.

9 Capacity to sue deals with a situation where a person who may have a cause of action is disqualified from bringing a suit under applicable law or is incompetent to bring a suit or is under some legal disability that would prevent him from maintaining an action unless represented by a guardian ad litem.12 Considering the nature of the controversy and the issues raised in the cases at bar. opportunities for social advancement. the ARCA provides: (d) For the purpose of an orderly transition. the primary issues posed in the cases at bar demand a discussion and interpretation of the Constitution. Legal standing is relevant in the realm of public law. namely.000. this Court affirms its ruling that the petitioners have the requisite legal standing. the implementation of the PIATCO Contracts.15 It is also self evident that the petitioning service providers stand in imminent danger of losing legitimate business investments in the event the PIATCO Contracts are upheld.. constitutional and other legal issues with far-reaching economic and social implications are embedded in the cases at bar."17 80 . They can chart the future inflow of investment under the BOT Law.000. since they stand to lose their jobs should the government’s contract with PIATCO be declared null and void. trade. and to a good.. The 1997 Concession Agreement and the ARCA both provide that upon the commencement of operations at the NAIA IPT III. After the Court’s Decision. Under settled jurisprudence.or injured by the judgment in the suit or the party entitled to the avails of the suit. hence. First. Before writing finis to the issue of legal standing. NAIA Passenger Terminals I and II will cease to be used as international passenger terminals. one's employment.00. profession.11 Measured by this yardstick. would deprive them of their sources of livelihood. Second. or calling is a property right and is protected from wrongful interference. except to the extent that the continuation of the existing services and operations shall lapse on or before the In-Service Date. The petitioners in G. conscientious and honest government. Over and above all these. represents itself as a corporation composed of responsible tax-paying Filipino citizens with the objective of "protecting and sustaining the rights of its members to civil liberties. 155001 and 155661 are employees of service providers operating at the existing international airports and employees of MIAA while petitionersintervenors are service providers with existing contracts with MIAA and they will all sustain direct injury upon the implementation of the PIATCO Contracts.13 Further. the application of the doctrine on legal standing necessarily involves a preliminary consideration of the merits of the case and is not purely a procedural issue. Third.10 In these cases. the New Respondents-Intervenors filed separate Motions for Reconsideration-In-Intervention alleging prejudice and direct injury.14 Beyond iota of doubt. on the other hand. a standard which is distinct from the concept of real party in interest. the New Respondents-Intervenors).000. this Court liberally granted legal standing to the petitioning members of the House of Representatives. (1) the PIATCO Employees and (2) NMTAI (collectively. the Court notes the bid of new parties to participate in the cases at bar as respondentsintervenors. courts have allowed private parties to institute actions challenging the validity of governmental action for violation of private rights or constitutional principles. at stake is the build-operate-and–transfer contract of the country’s premier international airport with a projected capacity of 10 million passengers a year. the BOT Law and its implementing rules which have not been passed upon by this Court in previous cases. PIATCO employees claim that "they have a direct and personal interest [in the controversy]. In certain instances. MIAA shall not renew any expired concession agreement relative to any service or operation currently being undertaken at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Passenger Terminal I. courts apply the doctrine of legal standing by determining whether the party has a direct and personal interest in the controversy and whether such party has sustained or is in imminent danger of sustaining an injury as a result of the act complained of. Nos. decent livelihood."16 NMTAI. the huge amount of investment to complete the project is estimated to be P13. which the petitioners and petitioners-intervenors denounce as unconstitutional and illegal.R. or extend any concession agreement which may expire subsequent hereto.

their Motions for Reconsideration-In-Intervention are denied for the rules cannot be relaxed to await litigants who sleep on their rights. it is also too late in the day for PIATCO to raise this issue. PIATCO cannot litigate issues on a piecemeal basis."21 Thus. the legal counsel of the Republic. As a further measure to achieve this intent. it maintains a certain debt-to-equity ratio for the project. c. Rule 19 provides that a Motion to Intervene should be filed "before rendition of judgment.6.01a of the draft concession agreement. It alleges that petitioners sued the DOTC.22 The evident intent of these standards is to protect the integrity and insure the viability of the project by seeing to it that the proponent has the financial capability to carry it out.4 of the Bid Documents. The petitions clearly bear out that public respondents DOTC and MIAA were impleaded as parties to the PIATCO Contracts and not merely as their implementors. the Solicitor General....23 In relation thereto. They have not offered any worthy explanation to justify their late intervention. appeared in the cases at bar in representation of the interest of the government. litigations shall be like a shore that knows no end. the Bid Documents require in no uncertain terms: The minimum amount of equity to which the proponent’s financial capability will be based shall be thirty percent (30%) of the project cost instead of the twenty percent (20%) specified in Section 3. The separate petitions filed by the MIAA employees19 and members of the House of Representatives20 alleged that "public respondents are impleaded herein because they either executed the PIATCO Contracts or are undertaking acts which are related to the PIATCO Contracts. The debt portion of the project financing should not exceed 70% of the actual project cost."18 PIATCO’s allegations are inaccurate. II Pre-qualification of PIATCO The Implementing Rules provide for the unyielding standards the PBAC should apply to determine the financial capability of a bidder for pre-qualification purposes: (i) proof of the ability of the project proponent and/or the consortium to provide a minimum amount of equity to the project and (ii) a letter testimonial from reputable banks attesting that the project proponent and/or members of the consortium are banking with them. More importantly. otherwise. a sideglance at these late motions will show that they hoist no novel arguments. MIAA and the DPWH in their own capacities or as implementors of the PIATCO Contracts and not as a contract party or as representatives of the Government of the Republic of the Philippines. and that they have adequate resources. Consequently. In any event. If PIATCO seriously views the non-inclusion of the Republic of the Philippines as an indispensable party as fatal to the petitions at bar. Section 2. It then leapfrogs to the conclusion that the "absence of an indispensable party renders ineffectual all the proceedings subsequent to the filing of the complaint including the judgment." The New Respondents-Intervenors filed their separate motions after a decision has been promulgated in the present cases. that they are in good financial standing. They are interested and indispensable parties to this Petition. it is most important for a bidder to show that it has the financial capacity to undertake the project by proving that it can fulfill the requirement on minimum amount of equity.01 (a) of the ARCA provides: 81 . Failure to Implead an Indispensable Party PIATCO next contends that petitioners should have impleaded the Republic of the Philippines as an indispensable party. At the pre-qualification stage. This is to correlate with the required debt-to-equity ratio of 70:30 in Section 2. In any event. public respondents DOTC and MIAA were impleaded as parties to the case for having executed the contracts. section 2.The Rules of Court govern the time of filing a Motion to Intervene. it should have raised the issue at the onset of the proceedings as a ground to dismiss. For this purpose.

or 30% of the estimated project cost. In the cases at bar.3. however.000. Concessionaire shall ensure that the debt-to-equity ratio is maintained.00) while maintaining a debt-to-equity ratio of 70:30. In peso and centavo terms.095.26 It is beyond refutation that Paircargo Consortium failed to prove its ability to provide the amount of at least P2. They do not. Anent this argument. in good financial standing and having adequate resources are to be provided. It cannot be overly emphasized that the rules require a minimum amount of equity to ensure that a bidder is not merely an operator or implementor of the project but an investor with a substantial interest in its success. that a bidder will not be indifferent to the completion of the project. after applying the investment ceilings provided under the General Banking Act and considering the maximum amounts that each member of the consortium may validly invest in the project. the PBAC should have considered not only its financial statements but other factors showing its financial capability. Its submission of testimonial letters attesting to its good financial standing will not cure this failure. who are the ultimate beneficiaries of the project.755.000.000. a bidder may only seek financing of the NAIA IPT III Project up to 70% of the project cost.384.25 By any reckoning. · Project Loan Financing Testimonial letters from reputable banks attesting that each of the members of the ownership entity are banking with them. a showing by a bidder that at the time of pre-qualification its maximum funds available for investment amount to only 6. Thirty percent (30%) of the cost must come in the form of equity or investment by the bidder itself.01 Project Scope. At best. The huge PIATCO nimbly tries to sidestep its failure by alleging that it submitted not only audited financial statements but also testimonial letters from reputable banks attesting to the good financial standing of the Paircargo Consortium. 82 .00.08% of the project cost is insufficient to satisfy the requirement prescribed by the Implementing Rules that the project proponent must have the ability to provide at least 30% of the total estimated project cost.55. at the time of pre-qualification. It contends that in adjudging whether the Paircargo Consortium is a pre-qualified bidder. the said letters merely establish its credit worthiness or its ability to obtain loans to finance the project. when it had to show that it had the ability to provide at least P2. had a net worth equivalent to only 6. disparity cannot be dismissed as of de minimis importance considering the high public interest at stake in the project.000.095. at the time of pre-qualification.755.24 Under the debt-to-equity restriction. the Paircargo Consortium had maximum funds available for investment to the NAIA IPT III Project only in the amount of P558. The minimum equity requirement also guarantees the Philippine government and the general public.871.4 FINANCING AND FINANCIAL PREQUALIFICATIONS REQUIREMENTS · Minimum Amount of Equity Each member of the proponent entity is to provide evidence of networth in cash and assets representing the proportionate share in the proponent entity.00. The scope of the project shall include: (a) Financing the project at an actual Project cost of not less than Three Hundred Fifty Million United States Dollars (US$350. it is daylight clear that the Paircargo Consortium. provided that if the actual Project costs should exceed the aforesaid amount. Audited financial statements for the past five (5) years as a company for each member are to be provided. The discontinuance of the project will irreparably damage public interest more than private interest. the guidelines provided in the Bid Documents are instructive: 3.Section 2.08% of the total estimated project cost.

they maintain that there was no modification of the financial features of the project. its financial capability for the project cannot pass muster. Respondents insist that there were no substantial or material amendments in the 1997 Concession Agreement as to the technical aspects of the project. we brightline the principle that in public bidding. or the financial proposal of PIATCO. engineering design. the public bidding becomes a mockery and the modified contracts must be struck down. This equity cannot be satisfied through possible loans.2. airline office rentals and porterage fees from the category of "Public Utility Revenues" under the draft Concession Agreement and its reclassification to "Non-Public Utility Revenues" under the 1997 Concession Agreement is significant and has far reaching consequence. PIATCO justifies the re-classification under the 1997 Concession Agreement on the ground that these fees are non-public utility revenues. There can be no substantial or material change to the parameters of the project. debt-to-equity ratio. the draft Concession Agreement specifies these fees as part of Public Utility Revenues and can be adjusted "only once every two yearsand in accordance with the Parametric Formula" and "the adjustments shall be made effective only after the written express approval of the MIAA. airline office rentals and porterage fees. minimum project cost. at the time of prequalification. the operations and maintenance budget. We disagree. In light of these parameters."29 The Bid Documents themselves clearly provide: 4. III Concession Agreement Again.3 Mechanism for Adjustment of Fees and Charges 4. i. In sum.. Further. A discussion of some of these changes to determine whether they altered the terms and conditions upon which the bids were made is again in order. airline office rentals and porterage fees from the category of fees subject to MIAA regulation in the 1997 Concession Agreement does not constitute a substantial amendment as these fees are not really public utility fees. bidders formulate competing proposals which are evaluated to determine the bid most favorable to the government. Once the contract based on the bid most favorable to the government is awarded. technical soundness.3. In other words. Paircargo Consortium. The 1997 Concession Agreement provides that with respect to Non-Public Utility Revenues.27 "[PIATCO] may make any adjustments it deems appropriatewithout need for the consent of GRP or any government agency. failed to show that it had the ability to provide 30% of the project cost and necessarily.e.prove compliance with the aforesaid requirement of minimum amount of equity in relation to the prescribed debt-to-equity ratio. operational and maintenance methods and procedures of the project or the technical proposal of PIATCO. the schedule and amount of annual guaranteed payments. The removal of groundhandling fees.e. conditions and parameters laid down by government and pursuant to the requirements of the project bidded upon. bids are submitted in accord with the prescribed terms.1 Periodic Adjustment in Fees and Charges 83 ."28 In contrast. Modification on Fees and Charges to be collected by PIATCO PIATCO clings to the contention that the removal of the groundhandling fees. a. we again hold that given the glaring gap between the net worth of Paircargo and PAGS combined with the amount of maximum funds that Security Bank may invest by equity in a nonallied undertaking. If there were changes and the contracts end up unfavorable to government.2.. after the contract award. including the essential terms and conditions of the contract bidded upon. which include groundhandling fees. i. all that is left to be done by the parties is to execute the necessary agreements and implement them.

that MIAA’s approval. PIATCO may impose fees and charges other than those fees and charges previously imposed or collected at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Passenger Terminal I. The deletion of MIAA’s reservation of its right to regulate the price adjustments of new fees and charges can 84 .37 PIATCO justifies the amendment by arguing that MIAA can establish terms before approval of new fees and charges. under the 1997 Concession Agreement."31 PIATCO then peddles the proposition that the said provision confers upon MIAA "full regulatory powers to ensure that PIATCO is charging non-public utility revenues at judiciousrates. … The fees and charges to be regulated in the above manner shall consist of the following: . The agreement did not contain an equivalent provision allowing MIAA to reserve the right to regulate the adjustments of these new fees and charges. . the draft Concession Agreement provides that MIAAreserves the right to regulate these new fees and charges if in its judgment the users of the airport shall be deprived of a free option for the services they cover.. further."32 To the trained eye. shall be allowed only once every two years in accordance with the parametric formula attached hereto as Annex 4. it is PIATCO that wields the power to determine the judiciousness of the said fees and charges. We are not impressed by the effort of PIATCO to depress this prejudice to public interest by its contention that in the 1997 Concession Agreement governing Non-Public Utility Revenues. Provided that the adjustments shall be made effective only after the written express approval of MIAA. inclusive of the mode for their adjustment.... c) groundhandling fees. d) rentals on airline offices.. PIATCO further argues that there is no substantial change in the 1997 Concession Agreement with respect to fees and charges PIATCO is allowed to impose which are not covered by Administrative Order No. airline office rentals and porterage fees as non-public utility fees is to remove them from regulation by the MIAA. . Fairly read. In excluding these fees from government regulation. Under the draft Concession Agreement. The changes are not insignificant specks as interpreted by PIATCO."34 We are not persuaded. Provided.35 Further. . In the draft Concession Agreement the power was expressly lodged with the MIAA and any adjustment can only be done once every two years.. .Adjustments in the fees and charges enumerated hereunder.36 In contrast. Series of 199333as the "relevant provision of the 1997 Concession Agreement is practically identical with the draft Concession Agreement. PIATCO’s stance is again a strained one. the danger to public interest cannot be downplayed. (f) porterage fees. whether or not falling within the purview of public utility revenues.30 The plain purpose in re-classifying groundhandling fees. There would have been no need for an amendment if there were no change in the power to regulate on the part of MIAA.2f. the argument will not fly for it is obviously non sequitur. . 1. the MIAA merely retained the right to approve any imposition of new fees and charges which were not previously collected at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Passenger Terminal I. subject to the written approval of MIAA. shall be contingent only on conformity of the adjustments to the said parametric formula. it is provided that "[PIATCO] shall at all times be judicious in fixing fees and charges constituting Non-Public Utility Revenues in order to ensure that End Users are not unreasonably deprived of services.

If the concession company. or designate a qualified operator acceptable to GRP to operate the Development Facility. The contracts at bar which made a mockery of the bidding process cannot be upheld and must be annulled in their entirety for violating law and public policy. (c) If GRP should. The plea is bereft of merit. GRP shall. PIATCO alleges that Section 4. the latter shall form and organize a concession company qualified to take over the operation of the Development Facility. There can be no blinking from the fact that in case of PIATCO’s default.. allow the Unpaid Creditors to be substituted as concessionaire. to be substituted as concessionaire and operator of the Development Facility in accordance with the terms and conditions hereof. likewise under the terms and conditions of this Agreement. The pertinent provisions of the 1997 Concession Agreement state: Section 4.04 Assignment. then GRP shall at the end of the 180-day period take over the Development Facility and assume Attendant Liabilities.. the government will assume PIATCO’s Attendant Liabilities as defined in the 1997 Concession Agreement. acting in good faith and with due diligence. the amendment diminished the authority of MIAA to protect the public interest in case of abuse by PIATCO. the concession company shall in good faith identify and designate a qualified operator acceptable to GRP within one hundred eighty (180) days from receipt of GRP’s written notice. GRP shall be deemed to have elected to take over the Development Facility with the concomitant assumption of Attendant Liabilities. We cannot concur.38 This obligation is not found in the draft Concession Agreement and the change runs roughshod to the spirit and policy of the BOT Law which was crafted precisely to prevent government from incurring financial risk. In any event. within one hundred eighty (180) Days from receipt of the joint written notice of the Unpaid Creditors and Concessionaire. is unable to designate a qualified operator within the aforesaid period. Assumption by the Government of the liabilities of PIATCO in the event of the latter’s default PIATCO posits the thesis that the new provisions in the 1997 Concession Agreement in case of default by PIATCO on its loans were merely meant to prescribe and limit the rights of PIATCO’s creditors with regard to the NAIA Terminal III. PIATCO pleads that the entire agreement should not be struck down as the 1997 Concession Agreement contains a separability clause. and the default has resulted in the acceleration of the payment due date of the Attendant Liability prior to its stated date of maturity. the Unpaid Creditors and Concessionaire shall immediately inform GRP in writing of such default. A plain reading of the above provision shows that it spells out in limpid language the obligation of government in case of default by PIATCO on its loans. the contracts were substantially amended after their award to the successful bidder on terms more beneficial to PIATCO and prejudicial to public interest. (b) In the event Concessionaire should default in the payment of an Attendant Liability. As demonstrated. Again. . If the concession company should elect to designate an operator for the Development Facility.04 of the 1997 Concession Agreement simply provides that PIATCO’s creditors have no right to foreclose the NAIA Terminal III. or (ii) allow the Unpaid Creditors. b. Provided that if at the end of the 180-day period GRP shall not have served the Unpaid Creditors and Concessionaire written notice of its choice. If this flawed process would be 85 . if qualified.have no other purpose but to dilute the extent of MIAA’s regulation in the collection of these fees. either (i) take over the Development Facility and assume the Attendant Liabilities. by written notice..

46 The counterpart provision in the 1997 Concession Agreement specifying the attendant liabilities that the Government would be obligated to pay should PIATCO default in its loan obligations is equally onerous to the Government as those contained in the ARCA. The respondents. public bidding will cease to be competitive and worse. charges. whether payable at maturity. is but a "clarification and explanation"39 of the securities allowed in the bid documents. including all interests. Section 4. contractors and sub-contractors" as well as "fees. reimbursements and other related expenses.06.41 We do not agree. According to the 1997 Concession Agreement. Such a public bidding will not inure to the public good. charges and expenses of any agents or trustees" of the Senior Lenders or any other persons or entities who have provided loans or financial facilities to respondent PIATCO in relation to NAIA IPT III. indemnities. from time to time owed or which may become owing by Concessionaire [PIATCO] to Senior Lenders or any other persons or entities who have provided. Attendant Liabilities Attendant Liabilities refer to all amounts recorded and from time to time outstanding in the books of the Concessionaire as owing to Unpaid Creditors who have provided. contractors and sub-contractors. interest. also maintain that the guarantee contained in the contracts. It is clear from said section 1. and further including amounts owed by Concessionaire to its suppliers.47 These provisions reject respondents’ contention that what the Government is obligated to pay. Article I of the ARCA and its counterpart provision in the 1997 Concession Agreement define in no uncertain terms the meaning of "attendant liabilities. penalties. in the event the Government is forced to prematurely take over NAIA IPT III as a result of respondent PIATCO’s default in the payment of its loan obligations to its Senior Lenders. as amended.06 that what the Government would pay is the sum total 86 .04 of the ARCA. all principal.06 of the same contract. and other related expenses. IV. by acceleration or otherwise." 45 They further include amounts owed by respondent PIATCO to its "professional consultants and advisers. is merely termination payment or just compensation for its takeover of NAIA IPT III.06. loaned.43 in the same manner that sections 4. or advanced funds or provided financial facilities to Concessionaire [PIATCO] for the Project [NAIA Terminal 3]. suppliers. Article I. charges. associated fees.04(c).. is an indirect guarantee allowed under the BOT Law. associated fees. loaned or advanced funds actually used for the Project. The resulting contracts cannot be given half a life but must be struck down as totally lawless."44 These amounts include "without limitation. A reasonable reading of all these relevant provisions would reveal that the ARCA made the Government liable to pay "all amounts ..06.04(b) and (c). particularly respondent PIATCO. They assert that section 4." They tell us of the amounts that the Government has to pay in the event respondent PIATCO defaults in its loan payments to its Senior Lenders and no qualified transferee or nominee is chosen by the Senior Lenders or is willing to take over from respondent PIATCO. Article IV of the 1997 Concession Agreement should be related to Article 1. in the event that respondent PIATCO defaults in the payment of its loans. Article IV42 of the ARCA should be read in conjunction with section 1. if any. Direct Government Guarantee The respondents further contend that the PIATCO Contracts do not contain direct government guarantee provisions..04(b) and (c). which superseded sections 4. They allege that these provisions merely provide for "compensation to PIATCO"40 in case of a government buy-out or takeover of NAIA IPT III. surcharges. Bidders will no longer bid on the basis of the prescribed terms and conditions in the bid documents but will formulate their bid in anticipation of the execution of a future contract containing new and better terms and conditions that were not previously available at the time of the bidding. government would not be favored with the best bid. reimbursements.allowed. Section 1. Article IV of the 1997 Concession Agreement. it would be liable to pay the following amounts as "attendant liabilities": Section 1..

They rely on the separability clause in the PIATCO Contracts. We are not persuaded.of all the debts. For instance." This is not to hold. as amended. or at least minimal. Respondent PIATCO likewise claims that in view of the fact that other BOT contracts such as the JANCOM contract. maintenance and/or operation of development projects with no. the Manila Water contract and the MRT contract had been considered valid. subsidy or equity is required. the mere inclusion of a direct government guarantee in an unsolicited proposal is fatal to the proposal.49 It was repeatedly stressed in the deliberations that in allowing indirect government guarantee. such as to authorize the project proponent to undertake related ventures within the project area. the whole contract should not be nullified. subsidy or equity provision will "necessarily disqualify a proposal from being treated and accepted as an unsolicited proposal. The intention to permit indirect government guarantee is evident from the Senate deliberations on the amendments to the BOT Law. 87 . (2) no direct government guarantee. The scheme is a form of direct government guarantee for it is undeniable that it leaves the government no option but to pay the "attendant liabilities" in the event that the Senior Lenders are unable or unwilling to appoint a qualified nominee or transferee as a result of PIATCO’s default in the payment of its Senior Loans. this Court cannot depart from the legal maxim that "those that cannot be done directly cannot be done indirectly. and (3) the government agency or local government unit has invited by publication other interested parties to a public bidding and conducted the same. The idea is to allow for reasonable government undertakings. In the JANCOM case.04 of the ARCA itself which states that the Government "shall make a termination payment to Concessionaire [PIATCO] equal to the Appraised Value (as hereinafter defined) of the Development Facility [NAIA Terminal III] or the sum of the Attendant Liabilities. The respondents again urge that should this Court affirm its ruling that the PIATCO Contracts contain direct government guarantee provisions. at the time of its turn over to the Government. Indeed. including all interest. 7718. however.A. the law seeks to encourage both the government and the private sector to formulate reasonable and innovative government undertakings in pursuance of BOT projects. No. The BOT Law and its implementing rules provide that there are three (3) essential requisites for an unsolicited proposal to be accepted: (1) the project involves a new concept in technology and/or is not part of the list of priority projects. 50 The failure to fulfill any of the requisites will result in the denial of the proposal. can the government be made liable for the debts of the project proponent as this would be tantamount to a direct government guarantee which is prohibited by the law. fees and charges. if greater. is the Mandaluyong public market which was built under the Build-andTransfer ("BT") scheme wherein instead of the government paying for the transfer. a reading of Metropolitan Manila Development Authority v. There is more reason to invalidate a contract if a direct government guarantee provision is inserted later in the contract via a backdoor amendment. As we stressed in our Decision. in order to encourage private sector participation in development projects. JANCOM Environmental Corporation53 will show that its issue is different from the issues in the cases at bar." For sure. capital outlay on the part of the government." 51 In fine. the project proponent was allowed to operate the upper floors of the structure as a commercial mall in order to recoup their investments. one of the sponsors of R. may actually be less than the amount of PIATCO’s debts. regardless of whether or not the value of NAIA IPT III. it is further provided that a direct government guarantee. that indirect government guarantee is not allowed under the BOT Law.48 An example cited by then Senator Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. the PIATCO contracts should be held valid as well. Such an amendment constitutes a crass circumvention of the BOT Law and renders the entire contract void. however. respondent PIATCO will not receive any amount less than sufficient to cover its debts. 52 There is no parity in the cited cases. In no way. Such liability would defeat the very purpose of the BOT Law which is to encourage the use of private sector resources in the construction. This reading is consistent with section 4. that respondent PIATCO incurred in pursuance of the NAIA IPT III Project. the main issue is whether there is a perfected contract between JANCOM and the Government.

Monopoly 88 . First. hence. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution grants the State in times of national emergency the right to temporarily take over the operation of any business affected with public interest. and (3) whether the signature of the Secretary of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources is sufficient to bind the Government. and illimitable"56 of the State’s powers. It is the State that prescribes such reasonable terms which will guide the implementation of the temporary takeover as dictated by the exigencies of the time. yet. insistent. Temporary takeover of business affected with public interest in times of national emergency Section 17. It is a basic principle in law that cases with dissimilar facts cannot have similar disposition.10(c). The compensation must be just and in accordance with law and equity for the government can not unjustly enrich itself at the expense of PIATCO and its investors. The nature and extent of the emergency is the measure of the duration of the takeover as well as the terms thereof. The cases at bar will not involve the exercise of the power of eminent domain. which compensation shall take into account the reasonable cost for the use of the Terminal and/or Terminal Complex. (2) whether there is a valid notice of award."54 It consists of two essential elements. it is an imposition of restraint upon liberty or property. just compensation was awarded. Police power can not be diminished. respondent PIATCO’s reliance on the case of Heirs of Suguitan v. Police power has been defined as the "state authority to enact legislation that may interfere with personal liberty or property in order to promote the general welfare. As we ruled in our Decision. This right is an exercise of police power which is one of the inherent powers of the State. it is a key reason for invalidating the PIATCO Contracts. is not unmindful of the reality that the structures comprising the NAIA IPT III facility are almost complete and that funds have been spent by PIATCO in their construction.57 It is also settled that public interest on the occasion of a national emergency is the primary consideration when the government decides to temporarily take over or direct the operation of a public utility or a business affected with public interest."58 It clearly obligates the government in the exercise of its police power to compensate respondent PIATCO and this obligation is offensive to the Constitution. Second. the power is exercised for the benefit of the common good. For one. This Court. however. this power of the State can not be negated by any party nor should its exercise be a source of obligation for the State. let alone defeated by any contract for its paramount consideration is public welfare and interest.59 Again. II. For the government to take over the said facility. it has to compensate respondent PIATCO as builder of the said structures. It is familiar knowledge that unlike the power of eminent domain. Section 5.55 It is and still is the "most essential.The resolution of the issue hinged on the following: (1) whether the conditions precedent to the perfection of the contract were complied with. III. Its definition in elastic terms underscores its all-encompassing and comprehensive embrace. What was involved in Heirs of Suguitan is the exercise of the state’s power of eminent domain and not of police power. These issue and sub-issues are clearly distinguishable and different. the issue of direct government guarantee was not considered by this Court when it held the JANCOM contract valid. police power is exercised without provision for just compensation for its paramount consideration is public welfare. Article V of the ARCA provides that respondent PIATCO "shall be entitled to reasonable compensation for the duration of the temporary takeover by GRP. City of Mandaluyong60 to justify its claim for reasonable compensation for the Government’s temporary takeover of NAIA IPT III in times of national emergency is erroneous.

specifically as to whether or not to enact a new law or amend an existing one.. 155547. We reiterate our ruling that while the service providers presently operating at NAIA Terminals I and II do not have the right to demand for the renewal or extension of their contracts to continue their services in NAIA IPT III. C.62 With due respect. Consequently. WHEREFORE. Panganiban in his concurring opinion Footnotes 1 G. Panganiban. Jr.Section 19. The Court in assuming jurisdiction over the petitions at bar simply performed its constitutional duty as the arbiter of legal disputes properly brought before it. 2 G.J. Vitug’s opinion. Finally. JJ. promulgated on 05 May 2003. Given its susceptibility to abuse. JJ. however. Corona. Monopolies are not per se prohibited. and Tinga. SO ORDERED. The purpose of a judicial proceeding is to settle the dispute in controversy by adjudicating the legal rights and obligations of the parties to the case. those who have subsisting contracts beyond the In-Service Date of NAIA IPT III can not be arbitrarily or unreasonably treated.. considering the public interest at stake. JJ. Callejo. Part of this duty is to assure that respondent PIATCO’s exercise of its right does not violate the legal rights of third parties. indeed the duty. Quisumbing. a Davide. we cannot subscribe to their submission. reviewed an action of a co-equal body. joins J. There is a fundamental difference between a case in court and an investigation of a congressional committee. Austria-Martinez. with the exception of those already operating in Subic Bay Freeport Special Economic Zone ("SBFSEZ"). On the other hand. by taking cognizance of the cases at bar. Clark Special Economic Zone ("CSEZ") and in Laoag City. Undeniably. to protect the interest of the public. J..R. 89 . 155547. joins J. the Respondent Congressmen assert that at least two (2) committee reports by the House of Representatives found the PIATCO contracts valid and contend that this Court. By virtue of the PIATCO contracts. 155001. this Court cannot treat the findings in a congressional committee report as binding because the facts elicited in congressional hearings are not subject to the rigors of the Rules of Court on admissibility of evidence. congressional investigation is conducted in aid of legislation.R. Sr. 63 Its aim is to assist and recommend to the legislature a possible action that the body may take with regard to a particular issue. 2003. J. especially in this instance when public interest requires nothing less. concur.. the contracts would create a monopoly in the operation of an international commercial passenger airport at the NAIA in favor of PIATCO. reiterate his separate opinion in the main case. No. Ynares-Santiago. no part. maintains his separate opinion in the main ponencia. The government has the right. the State has the bounden duty to regulate monopolies to protect public interest. and 155661. Vitug.. 3 Id.. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution mandates that the State prohibit or regulate monopolies when public interest so requires. Nos. The grant to respondent PIATCO of the exclusive right to operate NAIA IPT III should not exempt it from regulation by the government. Such regulation may be called for. NAIA IPT III would be the only international passenger airport operating in the Island of Luzon. promulgated on May 5. and Azcuna. especially in sensitive areas such as the operation of the country’s premier international airport.. and Carpio-Morales.. Sandoval-Gutierrez. the motions for reconsideration filed by the respondent PIATCO.61 They insist that the Court must respect the findings of the said committees of the House of Representatives. J.. respondent Congressmen and the respondents-in-intervention are DENIED with finality. Carpio.

the minimum amount of equity needed. G. 138570. Inc. 100898. and that they have adequate resources. 155001. G. G.R. 21 7 Alger Electric. at pp. G. 17 Id. as the case may be. 12 Supra note 11. 186. Carr. Section 2. ARCA. G.R.02(b) of the 1997 Concession Agreement. Rollo. v. July 5. 421 citing Callanta vs. and (ii) a letter testimonial from reputable banks attesting that the project proponent and/or members of the consortium are banking with them. (emphasis supplied). 14. v. No. 1995. 9 …. November 26. Rollo. Rule 3.H. 17. 246 SCRA 540. No. 3098.R. K. July 12.R. Section 3. Friedenthal. Ignacio v. March 28. Morato. Court of Appeals. No. that they are in good financial standing. Inc. 118910. G. pp. L-34298. R. p. 155661.S. Miller.R. 135 SCRA 37. 15501. p. 1993. No. Inc. Financial Capability: The project proponent must have adequate capability to sustain the financing requirements for the detailed engineering design. ARCA. 15 Ferrer. 633 (1962). 652-653. 342 SCRA 449. et al. Kane.R. No. 22 8 J. 155547. The equivalent provision in the 1997 Concession Agreement states: 90 . G. 1998. No.4 An Act Authorizing the Financing.R. 562-563. 3270-3271. 1986. A. October 28.R. 11 Bayan v. 478. citing Baker v. Construction. 13 Section 3. No. M.R. Zamora. 369 U. July 17. Court of Appeals. 3102-3103. v. No. February 28.R.. 5 19 G. Nos. 1980. 523 (1980). Civil Procedure 328 (1985). NLRC. 96 SCRA 648. Civil Procedure: Cases & Materials. No. Cound. 1997. 3096-3097. this capability shall be measured in terms of (i) proof of the ability of the project proponent and/or the consortium to provide a minimum amount of equity to the project. 224 SCRA 410. 145 SCRA 268. 20 G. 6 Rollo. 70615. Section 5.02 (b). Kilosbayan. Carnation Philippines. pp. 23 Emphasis supplied.01 (d). October 10. 2000.R. 18 Id. G. 14 Section 3. construction and/or operation and maintenance phases of the project.4 Pre-qualification Requirements. L-49541-52164. 1985. Ed. G. J. For purposes of pre-qualification. 10 c. 43.R. Equivalent provision is similarly numbered in the 1997 Concession Agreement. G. 155661. 24 16 Rollo. 155547. No. at p. No. Operation and Maintenance of Infrastructure Projects by the Private Sector. The government agency/LGU concerned shall determine on a project-to-project basis and before pre-qualification. 7 L.

31 Section 6. rentals and airline offices.33 of the 1997 Concession Agreement. G. 1997 Concession Agreement. 91 .06. No. 35 Par. p. No. 417-418. G.01 Project Scope.55 out of an estimated project cost of US$350. . check-in-counter rentals and porterage fees shall be allowed only once every two years and in accordance with the Parametric Formula attached hereto as Annex F. Series of 1993 enumerates the fees and charges that may be imposed by MIAA pursuant to its Charter. 34 Rollo. shall be contingent only on the conformity of the adjustments with the above said parametric formula.R.Section 2. 392. 2. Provided. The MIAA reserves the right to regulate under the foregoing terms and conditions the lobby and vehicular parking fees and other new fees and charges as contemplated in paragraph 2 of Section 6. No. 37 Section 6. Emphasis supplied. (b) aircraft tacking fees.871. Emphasis supplied. 155001. Periodic Adjustment in Fees and Charges. Draft Concession Agreement. and (d) Terminal Fees.03 (c).000. Section 6. 3211. 1997 Concession Agreement.03.650. that such approval of the MIAA. fees classified as "Public Utility Revenues" are: (a) aircraft parking fees. 2. 29 Section 6.384. Section 6. The scope of the project shall include: (a) Financing the project at an actual Project cost of not less than Three Hundred Fifty Million United States Dollars (US$350. Draft Concession Agreement. Section 1.00 or approximately P9.. Provided that adjustments shall be made effective only after the written express approval of the MIAA. or ensuring that the debt portion of the project financing does not exceed 70% of the actual Project cost. 36 Par.000. p.27 of the 1997 Concession Agreement provides that "Non-Public Utility Revenues" refer to all other income not classified as Public Utility Revenues derived within the Terminal and the Terminal Complex …" 28 Section 6. No. 155547. Emphasis supplied.. 25 Combined net worth of the Paircargo Consortium is P558. groundhandling fees. G. Emphasis supplied. further. 32 Rollo. …. Adjustments in the aircraft parking fees. 155001. 26 Rollo. 30 Rollo.00) while maintaining a debt-to-equity ratio of 70:30. Draft Concession Agreement.00.000. 155547. The pertinent portions provide: Section 6.R. G. 1997 Concession Agreement. The first adjustment shall be made prior to the In-Service Date of the Terminal. R. 33 Administrative Order No. aircraft tacking fees.03.000.01.03. pp. p.R. 27 Under section 1.01 (b).183.01 if in its judgment the users of the airport shall be deprived of a free option for the services they cover.000. 3212. (c) check-in counter fees. 1.

R. p. and further including amounts owed by Concessionaire to its suppliers. (vi) if the Senior Lenders. 15501.04 Security …. surcharges. 1998. at pp. or with an agent of such Senior Lenders (which agreement shall be subject to the approval of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas). charges. 42 Amended and Restated Concession Agreement dated November 26. No. 41 Id. inter alia. 3065. and without prejudice to any other rights of the Senior Lenders or any Senior Lenders’ agent may have (including without limitation under security interests granted in favor of the Senior Lenders).06) 39 Rollo. acting in good faith and using reasonable efforts. G. (c) GRP agrees with Concessionaire (PIATCO) that it shall negotiate in good faith and enter into direct agreement with the Senior Lenders. are unable to designate a nominee or effect a transfer in terms and conditions satisfactory to the Senior Lenders within one hundred eighty (180) days after giving GRP notice as referred to respectively in (iv) or (v) above. …. in such form as may be reasonably acceptable to both GRP and Senior Lenders. including all interests.38 The term "Attendant Liabilities" under the 1997 Concession Agreement is defined as: Attendant Liabilities refer to all amounts recorded and from time to time outstanding in the books of the Concessionaire as owing to Unpaid Creditors who have provided. indemnities. contractors and sub-contractors. (iv) If the Concessionaire [PIATCO] is in default under a payment obligation owed to the Senior Lenders. to the following parameters: …. 3071. 40 Id. to either in good faith identify and designate a nominee which is qualified under sub-clause (viii)(y) below to operate the Development Facility [NAIA Terminal 3] or transfer the Concessionaire’s [PIATCO] rights and obligations under this Agreement to a transferee which is qualified under subclause (viii) below. Section 4. then at the end thereof 92 . associated fees. penalties. at p. then GRP and the Senior Lenders shall endeavor in good faith to enter into any other arrangement relating to the Development Facility [NAIA Terminal 3] ( other than a turnover of the Development Facility [NAIA Terminal 3] to GRP) within the following one hundred eighty (180) days. 3069-3070. and as a result thereof the Senior Lenders have become entitled to accelerate the Senior Loans. loaned or advanced funds actually used for the Project. wit regard. (Section 1. reimbursements and other related expenses. the Senior Lenders shall have the right to notify GRP of the same. If no agreement relating to the Development Facility [NAIA Terminal 3] is arrived at by GRP and the Senior Lenders within the said 180-day period.

1. 602. Implementing Rules and Regulations. L-32096. Emphasis supplied. Presidential Commission on Good Government. G. charges. G. v. et al. 7718. May 27.R. Section 11.06. Article I.. May 5. this Agreement shall be deemed terminated upon the transfer of the Development Facility [NAIA Terminal 3] to GRP pursuant hereto. 3073-3076. 55 Id. or advanced funds or provided financial facilities to Concessionaire [PIATCO] for the Project [NAIA Terminal 3]. 35 SCRA 481. including. 52 Rollo. by acceleration or otherwise. 50 Section 4-A. 53 G. pp. v. 1994. 45 Id. Inc. loaned. if greater. associated fees. Rule 11. G. No. charges and expenses of any agents or trustees of such persons or entities). at 455-456. Section 1.R. No. No.3.the Development Facility [NAIA Terminal 3] shall be transferred by the Concessionaire [PIATCO] to GRP or its designee and GRP shall make a termination payment to Concessionaire [PIATCO] equal to the Appraised Value (as hereinafter defined) of the Development Facility [NAIA Terminal 3] or the sum of the Attendant Liabilities. and other related expenses (including the fees.. interest.01(c) hereof. G. Inc.R. 1988 citing Edu v. cited 93 . 375 SCRA 320. 56 Bataan Shipyard and Engineering Co. 1998. reimbursements.06. 75885. Attendant Liabilities 51 Attendant Liabilities refer to all amounts in each case supported by verifiable evidence from time to time owed or which may become owing by Concessionaire [PIATCO] to Senior Lenders or any other persons or entities who have provided. 487. Ericta. Franklin M. 1970. Emphasis supplied. No. 44 Section 1. whether payable at maturity. 1904). as amended. October 24. 15501. Amended and Restated Concession Agreement. Rule 11. 49 Id. The Police Power (Chicago. 46 Id. L-81958.R. Republic Act No. and further including amounts owed by Concessionaire [PIATCO] to its Section 11. 147465. professional consultants and advisers. 1987 citing Freund. 54 Philippine Association of Service Providers Co. January 20. ….R. Drilon. 43 Amended and Restated Concession Agreement ("ARCA") dated November 26. Implementing Rules and Regulations. contractors and sub-contractors. 47 Emphasis supplied. 2002. suppliers. without limitation.Notwithstanding Section 8. 48 III Record of the Senate 598. No. all principal. June 30..

4th ed. 59 Taxicabs of Metro Manila.R.. No. v. 61 Rollo 61 Arnault. Intermediate Appellate Court. 63 Arnault v.R. et al. 71169. 580. Hernandez.No. et al. December 18. April 12. G. Toribio.R. 62 Id. 1957. pp.. v. March 20. G. 76394. Rafferty. v. Inc.10(c). Presidential Commission on Good Government v. L-77663.. No. No.. 82281 and 60727. 42. 1982. G. 1989. G. L-59234.R. L-35256. L-7995. Sangalang. I. 57 Jose D. Provincial Board of Mindoro. 78182. July 18.by Cruz. 58 Section 5. Pena. No. 1988. 925. U. Jose L. Moya. 1987. 155547. Intermediate Appellate Court. Bell & Co. 3018-3020. May 31. March 17. Churchill and Tait v. Jr.A. 94 . G. p. 1983. Smith. 74457. 206 Phil 1. G.. Florentian A. et al. 202 Phil. G.. and Rubi v. et al. L-3820. 85. 660. Article V of the Amended and Restated Concession Agreement.R. G. et al. Nos. Alejandro Melchor. Natividad. 1998. 74376. 15 Phil. No. No. Constitutional Law. 40 Phil. Antonio M. 136. Ichong vs. Lozano v. 32 Phil.. November 26. Ynot v. v. 39 Phil. L-63419. v. September 30. 1950. 60 328 SCRA 137.R.R. 1986.R. Martinez.S. Board of Transportation. Nazareno. August 25.

Also assailed is the resolution dated 11 September 2002 of the Court of Appeals denying the motion for reconsideration filed by petitioner. and other benefits of their personnel. The last portion of Article XXXIII covers the appropriations of the CHR. Congress passed Republic Act No. vs. That officers and employees whose positions are affected by such reorganization or adjustments shall be granted retirement gratuities and separation pay in accordance with existing laws. 2004 COMMISSION ON HUMAN RIGHTS EMPLOYEES' ASSOCIATION (CHREA) Represented by its President. These special provisions state: 1. allowances. which 95 . to fix and determine the salaries. SP No. petitioner. make adjustments in their personal services itemization including. It provided for Special Provisions Applicable to All Constitutional Offices Enjoying Fiscal Autonomy. respondent. Organizational Structure.R. J.Before this Court is a petition for review filed by petitioner Commission on Human Rights Employees' Association (CHREA) challenging the Decision1 dated 29 November 2001 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. the transfer of item or creation of new positions in their respective offices: PROVIDED.. 155336 November 25. and whenever public interest so requires. DECISION CHICO-NAZARIO. otherwise known as the General Appropriations Act of 1998. 8522. Any provision of law to the contrary notwithstanding and within the limits of their respective appropriations as authorized in this Act. JR.: Can the Commission on Human Rights lawfully implement an upgrading and reclassification of personnel positions without the prior approval of the Department of Budget and Management? On 14 February 1998. No. The antecedent facts which spawned the present controversy are as follows: SECOND DIVISION G. COMMISSION ON HUMAN RIGHTS. which sustained the validity of the upgrading and reclassification of certain personnel positions in the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) despite the disapproval thereof by the Department of Budget and Management (DBM).R. MARCIAL A. the Constitutional Commissions and Offices enjoying fiscal autonomy are authorized to formulate and implement the organizational structures of their respective offices. but not limited to. 59678 affirming the Resolutions2 dated 16 December 1999 and 09 June 2000 of the Civil Service Commission (CSC). SANCHEZ.

or savings in the appropriations of their respective offices: PROVIDED. 4 96 . (e) payment of extraordinary and miscellaneous expenses. Sibulo. with Salary Grade 28 for the Caraga Regional Office. Vicente P. Contreras. commutable representation and transportation allowances. FY 1998. (b) repair. through its then Chairperson Aurora P. . Whereas. promulgated Resolution No. . but not limited to. or savings in the appropriations of their respective offices.A. Navarette-Reciña and Commissioners Nasser A. Use of Savings. allowances and other benefits of their personnel and whenever public interest so requires. Marohomsalic. CFAG passed an approved Joint Resolution No. . the CHR. contractual and casual employees.shall be payable from any unexpended balance of. make adjustments in the personnel services itemization including. (Emphases supplied) on the strength of these special provisions. journals. The Constitutional Commissions and Offices enjoying fiscal autonomy are hereby authorized to use savings in their respective appropriations for: (a) printing and/or publication of decisions. Mercedes V. and five Process Servers. . periodicals and equipment. the transfer of item or creation of new positions in their respective offices: PROVIDED. NOW THEREFORE. Coquia. particularly on organizational structures and authorizes the same to formulate and implement the organizational structures of their respective offices to fix and determine the salaries. which shall be payable from any unexpanded balance of.3 (Emphasis supplied) Annexed to said resolution is the proposed creation of ten additional plantilla positions. and training information materials. with Salary Grade 5 under the Office of the Commissioners. (c) purchase of books. the General Appropriations Act. to wit: WHEREAS. and Jorge R. facilities and equipment. and fringe benefits for their officials and employees as may be authorized by law. 8522 has provided special provisions applicable to all Constitutional Offices enjoying Fiscal Autonomy. adopting an upgrading and reclassification scheme among selected positions in the Commission. namely: one Director IV position. 2. No. the Commission by virtue of its fiscal autonomy hereby approves and authorizes the upgrading and augmentation of the commensurate amount generated from savings under Personal Services to support the implementation of this resolution effective Calendar Year 1998. maintenance and improvement of central and regional offices. Let the Human Resources Development Division (HRDD) prepare the necessary Notice of Salary Adjustment and other appropriate documents to implement this resolution. resolutions. That officers and employees whose positions are affected by such reorganization or adjustments shall be granted retirement gratuities and separation pay in accordance with existing laws. subject to accounting and auditing rules and regulations. the Commission on Human Rights is a member of the Constitutional Fiscal Autonomy Group (CFAG) and on July 24. FURTHER. 49 adopting internal rules implementing the special provisions heretoforth mentioned. 1998. A98-047 on 04 September 1998. allowances and other benefits authorized under compensation standardization laws. That the implementation hereof shall be in accordance with salary rates. and (f) other official purposes. R. (d) necessary expenses for the employment of temporary. four Security Officer II with Salary Grade 15.

104.On 19 October 1998. provided for the creation and upgrading of the following positions: Attorney VI Director IV (In the Regional Field Offices) 26 4 Director III Director IV 27 28 38.744.744.006 Total Salary Requirements From To 684.00 1 Accountant III Chief Accountant 18 24 51.756.00 Budget Officer IV 1 P229.00 28 It. likewise.00 A.00 1 Information Officer V Director IV 24 28 36.456.092. Creation B.928.756. CHR issued Resolution No. A980555 providing for the upgrading or raising of salary grades of the following positions in the Commission: Number of Number of Positions Position Position Title Title Positions Salary Grade Salary Grade From Security Officer IITo (Coterminous) 4 12 15 Total Salary Requirements Cashier III Cashier V 18 24 51.00 1 Budget Officer III 18 24 51. Upgrading Number of Positions Position Title From To Salary Grade From To Total Salary Requirements 1 Attorney V Director IV 25 28 P28.00 Security Officer II 97 .756.00 2 Security Officer I 11 15 57.780.00 1 Financial & Director IV Management Officer II 24 28 36.

---------------- Total 3 P 85. the CHR. A98-062 dated 17 November 1998.R. in the Field Operations Office (FOO) and three (3) Director III.8 The CHR forwarded said staffing modification and upgrading scheme to the DBM with a request for its approval.007 To support the implementation of such scheme. SG-28. thus. dated January 30. (Emphasis in the original) Pursuant to Section 78 of the General Provisions of the General Appropriations Act (GAA) FY 1998. SG-27 or Director IV. in the Central Office in effect would elevate the services to Office and change the context from support to substantive without actual change in functions. President Ramos then issued a Memorandum to the DBM Secretary dated 10 December 1997. SG-28. but the then DBM secretary Benjamin Diokno denied the request on the following justification: … Based on the evaluations made the request was not favorably considered as it effectively involved the elevation of the field units from divisions to services. one Chemist III. three Special Investigator I. directing the latter to increase the number of Plantilla positions in the CHR both Central and Regional Offices to implement the Philippine Decade Plan on Human Rights Education. a level even higher than the one previously denied. that this Department has the sole power and discretion to administer the compensation and position classification system of the National Government. we reiterate our previous stand denying the upgrading of the twelve (12) positions of Attorney VI. Being a member of the fiscal autonomy group does not vest the agency with the authority to reclassify. The Supreme Court ruled in the case of Victorina Cruz vs. the Department of Budget and Management is directed to establish and administer a unified compensation and position classification system in the government. as provided under Section 2 of RA No. authorized the augmentation of a commensurate amount generated from savings under Personnel Services. and one Accounting Clerk II. in the same resolution. The present proposal seeks further to upgrade the twelve (12) positions of Attorney VI. the CHR "collapsed" the vacant positions in the body to provide additional source of funding for said staffing modification. SG-28. This would elevate the field units to a bureau or regional office.548. one Clerk III. SG-28 in the Central Office. Court of Appeals. As represented. upgrade. While the members of the Group are authorized to formulate and implement the organizational structures of their respective offices and determine 98 . By virtue of Resolution No. SG-26 to Director III. SG-26 to Director IV. SG27 to Director IV. G. In the absence of a specific provision of law which may be used as a legal basis to elevate the level of divisions to a bureau or regional office. and the services to offices. the Philippine Human Rights Plan and Barangay Rights Actions Center in accordance with existing laws. The request to upgrade the three (3) positions of Director III. 1996. no organizational unit or changes in key positions shall be authorized unless provided by law or directed by the President. Moreover. 119155. the creation of a Finance Management Office and a Public Affairs Office cannot be given favorable recommendation. otherwise known as the Compensation Standardization Law. No. SG-27 to Director IV. Among the positions collapsed were: one Attorney III. and create positions without approval of the DBM. 6758. four Attorney IV.

CHREA stood its ground in saying that the DBM is the only agency with appropriate authority mandated by law to evaluate and approve matters of reclassification and upgrading. and reversed the recommendation of the CSC-Regional Office that the upgrading scheme be censured. 99-2800 dated December 16. Given the cacophony of judgments between the DBM and the CSC.10 CHREA filed a motion for reconsideration. The fallo of the Court of Appeals decision provides: IN VIEW OF ALL THE FOREGOING. Meanwhile. …THE COURT OF APPEALS SERIOUSLY ERRED IN UPHOLDING THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE COMMISSION ON HUMAN RIGHTS OF REPUBLIC ACT NO.11 Unperturbed. petitioner filed this petition in this Court contending that: A. in representation of the rank and file employees of the CHR. 8522 (THE GENERAL APPROPRIATIONS ACT FOR THE FISCAL YEAR 1998) DESPITE ITS BEING IN SHARP CONFLICT WITH THE 1987 CONSTITUTION AND THE STATUTE ITSELF. B. Santos-Tiu. …THE COURT OF APPEALS GRAVELY ERRED WHEN IT HELD THAT UNDER THE 1987 CONSTITUTION. and reclassification scheme in the CHR on the justification that such action is within the ambit of CHR's fiscal autonomy. George Q. the instant petition is ordered DISMISSED and the questioned Civil Service Commission Resolution No. Corazon A. 1999 as well as No. Ruiz.9 (Emphases supplied) In light of the DBM's disapproval of the proposed personnel modification scheme. Flordeliza A. 992800 AND 001354 AS WELL AS THAT OF THE 99 . The CSC-Central Office denied CHREA's request in a Resolution dated 16 December 1999.the compensation of their personnel. retitling. the CSC-National Capital Region Office. the request of Ronnie N. Hubert V. 2000. but the CSCCentral Office denied the same on 09 June 2000. petitioner CHREA elevated the matter to the Court of Appeals. Briones. The Court of Appeals affirmed the pronouncement of the CSC-Central Office and upheld the validity of the upgrading. such authority is not absolute and must be exercised within the parameters of the Unified Position Classification and Compensation System established under RA 6758 more popularly known as the Compensation Standardization Law. 001354 dated June 9. through a memorandum dated 29 March 1999. as well as creation of positions. No cost. Rosero. C. THE COMMISSION ON HUMAN RIGHTS ENJOYS FISCAL AUTONOMY. The decretal portion of which reads: WHEREFORE. the officers of petitioner CHREA. We therefore reiterate our previous stand on the matter. requested the CSCCentral Office to affirm the recommendation of the CSC-Regional Office. …THE COURT OF APPEALS SERIOUSLY AND GRAVELY ERRED IN AFFIRMING THE VALIDITY OF THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION RESOLUTION NOS. Dumlao [and]. is hereby denied. recommended to the CSC-Central Office that the subject appointments be rejected owing to the DBM's disapproval of the plantilla reclassification. are hereby AFFIRMED.

which provides in Sections 2 and 4 thereof that it is the DBM that shall establish and administer a unified Compensation and Position Classification System. reclassification. This sufficiently meets the injury test. plantilla creation. The CHR contends that it has the authority to cause the upgrading. particularly with regard to the upgrading and reclassification of positions therein. An Act Prescribing a Revised Compensation and Position Classification System in the Government and For Other Purposes. Further. Indeed. the CHR's upgrading scheme. neither should our hands be tied by this technical concern. it is settled jurisprudence that an issue that was neither raised in the complaint nor in the court below cannot be raised for the first time on appeal. if found to be valid. Act No. Jr. protests that the upgrading and collapsing of positions benefited only a select few in the upper level positions in the Commission resulting to the demoralization of the rank and file employees. from which the benefits of the employees. including those in the rank and file. Petitioner bewails that the CSC and the Court of Appeals erroneously assumed that CHR enjoys fiscal autonomy insofar as financial matters are concerned. and due process. has the authority to sue the CHR.12 The central question we must answer in order to resolve this case is: Can the Commission on Human Rights validly implement an upgrading. justice. reclassification. the personality of petitioner to file this case was recognized by the CSC when it took cognizance of the CHREA's request to affirm the recommendation of the CSC-National Capital Region Office. 6758. petitioner. creation and collapsing of plantilla positions in the CHR. Respondent CHR sharply retorts that petitioner has no locus standi considering that there exists no official written record in the Commission recognizing petitioner as a bona fide organization of its employees nor is there anything in the records to show that its president. reclassify. UPGRADING AND RECLASSIFICATION OF POSITIONS THEREIN. Sanchez.OPINION OF THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE IN STATING THAT THE COMMISSION ON HUMAN RIGHTS ENJOYS FISCAL AUTONOMY UNDER THE 1987 CONSTITUTION AND THAT THIS FISCAL AUTONOMY INCLUDES THE ACTION TAKEN BY IT IN COLLAPSING.13 Here. dated 01 July 1989. as to do so would be offensive to the basic rules of fair play. Germane to our discussion is Rep. it is the Court's opinion that the present petition is imbued with merit. reclassification. After a thorough consideration of the arguments of both parties and an assiduous scrutiny of the records in the case at bar. potentially entails eating up the Commission's savings or that portion of its budgetary pie otherwise allocated for Personnel Services. and collapsing scheme sans the approval of the DBM because it enjoys fiscal autonomy.14 We now delve into the main issue of whether or not the approval by the DBM is a condition precedent to the enactment of an upgrading. and create positions inasmuch as the approval of the DBM relative to such scheme is still indispensable. CHREA's personality to bring the suit was a nonissue in the Court of Appeals when it passed upon the merits of this case. are derived. we held in a multitude of cases that a proper party is one who has sustained or is in immediate danger of sustaining an injury as a result of the act complained of. creation. or the Salary Standardization Law.. Thus. On petitioner's personality to bring this suit. Marcial A. and collapsing of plantilla positions in the Commission without the prior approval of the Department of Budget and Management? Petitioner CHREA grouses that the Court of Appeals and the CSC-Central Office both erred in sanctioning the CHR's alleged blanket authority to upgrade. Thus: 100 . Indeed. which consists of rank and file employees of respondent CHR.

but in jurisprudence as well.) SEC. the same is subject to the review of the Department of Budget and Management. tribunals. centers. its main duty being to ascertain that the proposed compensation. 101 . As stated in Intia. appointive or elective. hereinafter referred to as the System as provided for in Presidential Decree No. Coverage. among others. departments. The word to administer means to control or regulate in behalf of others. In the recent case of Philippine Retirement Authority (PRA) v. prevailing rates in the private sector for comparable work. and other benefits received by PRA officials and employees without the requisite approval or authority of the DBM are unauthorized and irregular. benefits and other incentives to be given to PRA officials and employees adhere to the policies and guidelines issued in accordance with applicable laws. sans qualification. in view of the express powers granted to PRA under its charter. (Emphasis supplied. (Emphasis supplied. due regard shall be given to. and qualification requirements of the positions. 2. administrations. – The Compensation and Position Classification System herein provided shall apply to all positions.15 The regulatory power of the DBM on matters of compensation is encrypted not only in law. -. bureaus. and the armed forces. the Legislative and the Judicial Branches and the Constitutional Commissions and shall include all. Justice Reynato Puno. whether such corporations and financial institutions perform governmental or proprietary functions. now existing or hereafter created in the government. encompasses the entire gamut of government offices. as to administer the government of the state. 985. the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) is hereby directed to establish and administer a unified Compensation and Position Classification System. application or conduct of. that shall be applied for all government entities. but shall not be limited to. on full or part-time basis. state colleges and universities. 4. Statement of Policy. However.16 this Court. The term "government" refers to the Executive. as amended. to direct or superintend the execution. The term "government-owned or controlled corporations and financial institutions" shall include all corporations and financial institutions owned or controlled by the National Government.SEC. speaking through Mr. local government units.) The disputation of the Court of Appeals that the CHR is exempt from the long arm of the Salary Standardization Law is flawed considering that the coverage thereof. authorities. The role of the Department of Budget and Management is supervisorial in nature. Jesusito L. In the words of the Court – Despite the power granted to the Board of Directors of PRA to establish and fix a compensation and benefits scheme for its employees. boards. ruled that compensation. as defined above. institutes. This power to "administer" is not purely ministerial in character as erroneously held by the Court of Appeals. offices. In determining rates of pay. and to manage or conduct public affairs. the extent of the review authority of the Department of Budget and Management is limited. including government-owned or controlled corporations and government financial institutions. courts. as mandated by the Constitution. councils. commissions.It is hereby declared the policy of the State to provide equal pay for substantially equal work and to base differences in pay upon substantive differences in duties and responsibilities. allowances. Buñag. For this purpose. the task of the Department of Budget and Management is simply to review the compensation and benefits plan of the government agency or entity concerned and determine if the same complies with the prescribed policies and guidelines issued in this regard.

The Constitutional Commissions. Powers and Functions. assessment of organizational effectiveness and review and evaluation of legislative proposals having budgetary or organizational implications. by virtue of Section 6 of P. the compensation system established by the PPC is.In Victorina Cruz v.) As measured by the foregoing legal and jurisprudential yardsticks. the DBM's function is merely to ensure that the action taken by the Board of Directors complies with the requirements of the law. reclassification. are the Civil Service Commission. and as such enjoys fiscal autonomy. Thus: Sec.) Irrefragably. and creation of additional plantilla positions in the CHR based on its finding that such scheme lacks legal justification. – The Department of Budget and Management shall assist the President in the preparation of a national resources and expenditures budget. administration of compensation and position classification systems. it is now estopped from now claiming that the nod of approval it has previously sought from the DBM is a superfluity. (Emphasis supplied. Section 3. execution and control of the National Budget. 102 . achievement of more economy and efficiency in the management of government operations. 1. In Intia. the Commission on Elections.17 we held that the DBM has the sole power and discretion to administer the compensation and position classification system of the national government.20 Palpably. the CHR itself recognizes the authority of the DBM to deny or approve the proposed reclassification of positions as evidenced by its three letters to the DBM requesting approval thereof. that PPC's compensation system "conforms as closely as possible with that provided for under R. the imprimatur of the DBM must first be sought prior to implementation of any reclassification or upgrading of positions in government. the Court of Appeals' Decision was based on the mistaken premise that the CHR belongs to the species of constitutional commissions. Title XVII. Notably. it is within the turf of the DBM Secretary to disallow the upgrading. Article IX of the Constitution states in no uncertain terms that only the CSC. and the Commission on Audit shall be tagged as Constitutional Commissions with the appurtenant right to fiscal autonomy. As such. to wit: SEC. The Court of Appeals incorrectly relied on the pronouncement of the CSC-Central Office that the CHR is a constitutional commission. preparation and maintenance of accounting systems essential to the budgetary process. The Commission shall enjoy fiscal autonomy. Commission on Audit. Jr. No. subject to the review of the DBM. This is consonant to the mandate of the DBM under the Revised Administrative Code of 1987. and the Commission on Audit. Their approved annual appropriations shall be automatically and regularly released. This Court intoned: It should be emphasized that the review by the DBM of any PPC resolution affecting the compensation structure of its personnel should not be interpreted to mean that the DBM can dictate upon the PPC Board of Directors and deprive the latter of its discretion on the matter. 6758. Rather. 1597.A. which shall be independent.18 the Court held that although the charter19 of the Philippine Postal Corporation (PPC) grants it the power to fix the compensation and benefits of its employees and exempts PPC from the coverage of the rules and regulations of the Compensation and Position Classification Office. nonetheless. Sec. v. 3. No.D. the Commission on Elections." (Emphasis supplied. preparation. specifically. But. Chapter 1. 5. Court of Appeals.

and pursuant to the wisdom and dispatch its needs may require from time to time. the constitutional commissions shall include only the Civil Service Commission. 26. In contrast. the Commission on Elections. in Chapter 5.22 In Blaquera v. are the Civil Service Commission. As expressed in the oft-repeated maxim expressio unius est exclusio alterius. the Commission on Audit. Constitutional Commissions. expressium facit cessare tacitum – what is expressed puts an end to what is implied. Thus. – The Constitutional Commissions. the Supreme Court. The imposition of restrictions and constraints on the manner the independent constitutional offices allocate and utilize the funds appropriated for their operations is anathema to fiscal autonomy and violative not only of the express mandate of the Constitution but especially as regards the Supreme Court. the Commission on Elections.. 24. Sections 24 and 26 of Book II on Distribution of Powers of Government.) From the 1987 Constitution and the Administrative Code. – There shall be in accordance with the Constitution. an Office of the Ombudsman. and the Office of the Ombudsman. The approved annual appropriations shall be automatically and regularly released. which shall be independent. Alcala and Bengzon v. the Constitutional Commissions. in accordance with law. . The Judiciary.21 Nor is there any legal basis to support the contention that the CHR enjoys fiscal autonomy. a Commission on Human Rights. the Commission on Elections. fix rates of compensation not exceeding the highest rates authorized by law for compensation and pay plans of the government and allocate and disburse such sums as may be provided by law or prescribed by them in the course of the discharge of their functions.. which enjoy fiscal autonomy. the Administrative Code. it is abundantly clear that the CHR is not among the class of Constitutional Commissions. [the] Constitutional 103 . fiscal autonomy entails freedom from outside control and limitations. It is the freedom to allocate and utilize funds granted by law. the fiscal autonomy enjoyed by the Judiciary. and the Commission on Audit. other than those provided by law. and the Ombudsman must have the independence and flexibility needed in the discharge of their constitutional duties. the express mention of one person. In essence. Chapter 5.23 it is understood that it is only the Judiciary. It recognizes the power and authority to levy. of the independence and separation of powers upon which the entire fabric of our constitutional system is based. the Civil Service Commission. SEC. Thus: SEC. Stated otherwise. as provided in the Constitution. 29. is silent on the grant of similar powers to the other bodies including the CHR. Fiscal Autonomy.Along the same vein. Likewise. Section 29 thereof. act or consequence excludes all others. assess and collect fees. in Bengzon. and the Office of the Ombudsman contemplates a guarantee of full flexibility to allocate and utilize their resources with the wisdom and dispatch that their needs require. the Commission on Elections.24 we explained: As envisioned in the Constitution. thing. Drilon. In the interest of comity and cooperation. and the Commission on Audit. (Emphasis ours. the Commission on Audit. Congress may establish an independent economic and planning agency. and a national police commission. which are granted independence and fiscal autonomy. the Civil Service Commission. and independent central monetary authority. – The Constitutional Commissions shall enjoy fiscal autonomy. Other Bodies. SEC.

Commissions."26 Indeed. however. We now agree with the petitioners that this grant of autonomy should cease to be a meaningless provision. That officers and employees whose positions are affected by such reorganization or adjustments shall be granted retirement gratuities and separation pay in accordance with existing law. the transfer of item or creation of new positions in the Judiciary. We are of the same mind with the DBM on its standpoint. allowances and other benefits authorized under compensation standardization laws. upgrade. we share the stance of the DBM that the grant of fiscal autonomy notwithstanding. the CHR. Act No.) The most lucid argument against the stand of respondent. to wit: 1. Any provision of law to the contrary notwithstanding and within the limits of their respective appropriations authorized in this Act. Act No. Organizational Structure. 8522 "that the implementation hereof shall be in accordance with salary rates. thusBeing a member of the fiscal autonomy group does not vest the agency with the authority to reclassify. all the same. 104 . We note with interest that the special provision under Rep. That the implementation hereof shall be in accordance with salary rates. to fix and determine the salaries. In contrast. and the Ombudsman have so far limited their objections to constant reminders. make adjustments in the personal services itemization including.) All told. PROVIDED. not a tag obtainable by membership. FURTHER. and other benefits of their personnel. the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court is authorized to formulate and implement organizational structure of the Judiciary. and create positions without approval of the DBM. 8522. allowances. all government offices must. Fiscal autonomy is a constitutional grant.) Neither does the fact that the CHR was admitted as a member by the Constitutional Fiscal Autonomy Group (CFAG) ipso facto clothed it with fiscal autonomy. the law upon which respondent heavily anchors its case upon has expressly provided that any form of adjustment in the organizational structure must be within the parameters of the Salary Standardization Law. or savings in the appropriations of their respective offices: PROVIDED. is the provision of Rep. nonetheless. allowances and other benefits authorized under compensation standardization laws. (Emphasis supplied. (Emphasis supplied. the Special Provision Applicable to the Judiciary under Article XXVIII of the General Appropriations Act of 1998 specifically mentions that such special provision applies to the judiciary and had categorically authorized the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court to formulate and implement the organizational structure of the Judiciary. such authority is not absolute and must be exercised within the parameters of the Unified Position Classification and Compensation System established under RA 6758 more popularly known as the Compensation Standardization Law. and whenever public interest so requires. but merely states its coverage to include Constitutional Commissions and Offices enjoying fiscal autonomy. although admittedly a constitutional creation is. not included in the genus of offices accorded fiscal autonomy by constitutional or legislative fiat. which shall be payable from any unexpended balance of.25 (Emphasis supplied. kowtow to the Salary Standardization Law. while cited under the heading of the CHR. Even assuming en arguendo that the CHR enjoys fiscal autonomy. While the members of the Group are authorized to formulate and implement the organizational structures of their respective offices and determine the compensation of their personnel. did not specifically mention CHR as among those offices to which the special provision to formulate and implement organizational structures apply. but not limited to.

R. Austria-Martinez.27 For this purpose. Jr. concur. In Energy Regulatory Board v. considering his expertise on matters affecting the nation's coffers. knows from where he speaks inasmuch as he has the front seat view of the adverse effects of an unwarranted upgrading or creation of positions in the CHR in particular and in the entire government in general. The DBM's exercise of such authority is not in itself an arrogation inasmuch as it is pursuant to the paramount law of the land. Jr. The DBM expounded that Section 78 of the general provisions of the General Appropriations Act FY 1998.. SG-28. after a thorough evaluation." Here. is beyond cavil. pp. the Secretary of the DBM. and Amelita G. Resolution No. 1 2 Id. 36-50. Puno. Footnotes Rollo. the Decision dated 29 November 2001 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. The Commission on Human Rights Resolution No. in the Central Office. SG-28. the DBM denied the same as this would change the context from support to substantive without actual change in functions. with Associate Justices Andres B. No pronouncement as to costs. A98-062 dated 17 November 1998 without the approval of the Department of Budget and Management are disallowed.. SG-27 to Director IV. and qualification requirements of the positions. concurring. To be sure. that the reclassification and upgrading scheme proposed by the CHR lacks legal rationalization. SO ORDERED.J. The interpretation of an administrative government agency. which is tasked to implement a statute is accorded great respect and ordinarily controls the construction of the courts.. This power is part of the system of checks and balances or system of restraints in our government. which the CHR heavily relies upon to justify its reclassification scheme. the DBM discerned that there is no law authorizing the creation of a Finance Management Office and a Public Affairs Office in the CHR. in the case under review. A98-055 dated 19 October 1998 and Resolution No." the DBM. Callejo. JJ. Reyes. as the President's alter ego. 105 . at 37. Congress has delegated to the DBM the power to administer the Salary Standardization Law and to ensure that the spirit behind it is observed. the petition is GRANTED. The ruling dated 29 March 1999 of the Civil Service Commision-National Capital Region is REINSTATED. as the law's designated body to implement and administer a unified compensation system. SP No. and four positions of Director III. Tolentino.The Salary Standardization Law has gained impetus in addressing one of the basic causes of discontent of many civil servants. This view of the DBM. WHEREFORE.. In line with its role to breathe life into the policy behind the Salary Standardization Law of "providing equal pay for substantially equal work and to base differences in pay upon substantive differences in duties and responsibilities. Penned by Associate Justice Conrado M. Anent CHR's proposal to upgrade twelve positions of Attorney VI. made a determination. 59678 and its Resolution dated 11 September 2002 are hereby REVERSED and SET ASIDE. Vasquez.28 we echoed the basic rule that the courts will not interfere in matters which are addressed to the sound discretion of government agencies entrusted with the regulation of activities coming under the special technical knowledge and training of such agencies. Acting C. and Tinga. explicitly provides that "no organizational unit or changes in key positions shall be authorized unless provided by law or directed by the President. Sr. A98-047 dated 04 September 1998. Court of Appeals. SG-26 to Director IV. the Salary Standardization Law and the Administrative Code.

7 Id. No. 243 (1996 Ed). 397 SCRA 27. 63. No.R. 295 SCRA 366. G. 306 SCRA 593. 2005 AUTOMOTIVE INDUSTRY WORKERS ALLIANCE (AIWA) and its Affiliated Unions: Mitsubishi Motors Workers Phils. DURASTEEL WORKERS UNION.R. G. (2s) 814. 633. EN BANC 15 16 G. Philippine Political Law 243 (1996 ed. 103524. 35. 149717. at 47. DECISION 106 . SAMAHANG MANGGAGAWA NG CINDERELLA. G. 119155. 86738. 303 U. in her capacity as Secretary of Labor and Employment. at 37. G. 18 G. 13 November 1991. 07 October 2003. Act No. 8 Id. petitioners. citing Nestle v. 20 Rollo. G. Special Provisions Applicable to all Constitutional Offices Enjoying Fiscal Autonomy. HON. Philippine Political Law. Supervisors Union. No. TOMAS. 26 G. 11 September 1998. 19 Rep. 14 Philippine Law Dictionary 21 (2nd ed. 30 January 1996. Alcala. Nos. No. Workers Union. at 62-63.R. 413 SCRA 75. Court of Appeals. FILSHUTTERS EMPLOYEES & WORKERS UNION. Nissan Motors Phils. No. Rep. 9 Id.A. No.R. 20 April 2001. Inc. 110642. Mitsubishi Motors Phils. p. 21 Blaquera v.S. Bengzon v. 11 Id. 8522. 157509 January 18. 13 EASCO v. 131529.). PATRICIA STO. 112056 and 119597. 22 Id. respondents. LTFRB. No. 25 Rollo. PEPSI-COLA SUPERVISORS AND EMPLOYEES UNION. p. Decena. 7354 (1992).R. citing Caw v. 208 SCRA 133. Union. Canet v. 357 SCRA 30. G. Cruz. at 51-52. 20 January 2004. 30 April 1999.. 155344. at 57. 23 24 Id. NATIONAL LABOR UNION.. 109406. 6 Id. p. Workers Union. 12 Id. Drilon.R. ALBERTO ROMULO. 63 OG 3393. 143784. Cruz.R. citing Ex Parte Lewitt. 15 April 1992.R. 420 SCRA 388. 46. at 53-56. at 55. Benedicto. Act No. 28 5 Id. at 54. No. and HON. in his capacity as Executive Secretary. Article XXXIII.R. 609. 111494. Toyota Motors Phils. vs. 113079. PSBA FACULTY ASSOCIATION. 27 4 Id. 252 SCRA599. SAMAHANG MANGGAGAWA NG BICUTAN CONTAINERS CORP.). No.3 Id. 17 G. 05 February 2003. PLDT SECURITY PERSONNEL UNION.R. 8 C. 10 Id.R. PUREFOODS UNIFIED LABOR ORGANIZATION.. 203 SCRA 504. SAMAHANG MANGGAGAWA NG LAURA’S FOOD PRODUCTS. at 19-20.

Procedurally. They likewise maintain that they are suing in behalf of the employees of the NLRC who have pending cases for dismissal.O. as represented by the Office of the Solicitor General. 185 dated 10 March 2003 whereby administrative supervision over the National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC). On 02 March 1989. No. possessed of the necessary standing. Thus. its regional branches and personnel. in authorizing the Secretary of Labor to exercise administrative supervision over the NLRC.O.5 petitioners affirm their locus standi contending that they are suing for and in behalf of their members – estimated to be more or less fifty thousand (50. Even on the merits. amending the latter law which only Congress can do. its regional branches and personnel thru his alter ego. No. The subject E. the Secretary of Labor. citing Sec. 6715 set-up. was turned over to the NLRC Chairman. 185 does not require additional appropriation for its implementation. during Martial Law – was an integral part of the Department (then Ministry) of Labor and Employment (DOLE) under the administrative supervision of the Secretary of Justice. petitioners invoke their status as labor unions and as taxpayers whose rights and interests are allegedly violated and prejudiced by Executive Order No. composed of ten (10) labor unions. 185 AUTHORIZING THE SECRETARY OF LABOR AND EMPLOYMENT TO EXERCISE ADMINISTRATIVE SUPERVISION OVER THE NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION 107 . As the petition can be decided without passing on the validity of the subject executive order. For clarity. No. Thus. allegedly reverted to the pre-Rep. opposed the petition on procedural3and substantive4 grounds.O. During the time of President Corazon C. Act No.created by Presidential Decree No. Aquino.CHICO-NAZARIO. its regional branches and personnel. Even assuming that their individual members are taxpayers. No. pursuant to the doctrine of qualified political agency. 442. Closely intertwined therewith. Article VII thereof. In support of their position. 1 petitioners argue that the NLRC -. 185. J. Executive Order No. not even in their capacity as taxpayers. considering that labor unions are exempt from paying taxes. respondents advance the view that the petition must fail as the administrative supervision granted by the Labor Code to the NLRC Chairman over the NLRC. and while she was endowed with legislative functions after EDSA I. No. 6715 declaring that the NLRC was to be attached to the DOLE for program and policy coordination only while the administrative supervision over the NLRC. petitioners theorize that the issue before this Court must necessarily be decided as it involves an act of the Chief Executive amending a provision of law.: Petitioners. 30 of the Tax Reform Act of 1997. Article 213 of the Labor Code was expressly amended by Republic Act No. 185 has prejudiced or threatened to prejudice their rights and existence as labor unions and as taxpayers. in the exercise of the President’s power of control and supervision. does not place them beyond the President’s broader power of control and supervision. its regional branches and personnel. respondents further argue that petitioners have no locus standi to assail the validity of E.O. The respondents herein. In an original action for certiorari. In their Reply.O. a power conferred no less than by the Constitution in Section 17. he can generally oversee the operations of the NLRC. 185. call upon this Court to exercise its power of judicial review to declare as unconstitutional an executive order assailed to be in derogation of the constitutional doctrine of separation of powers. 185 is hereby quoted: EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. otherwise known as the Labor Code. its regional branches and all its personnel including the executive labor arbiters and labor arbiters was transferred from the NLRC Chairperson to the Secretary of Labor and Employment. E. 2922 was issued whereby the NLRC became an agency attached to the DOLE for policy and program coordination and for administrative supervision. respondents maintain that a taxpayer suit will not prosper as E.000) workers – who are the real parties to be affected by the resolution of this Court. respondents conclude that the same should be forthwith dismissed. it is alleged that the petition does not pose an actual case or controversy upon which judicial review may be exercised as petitioners have not specifically cited how E.

Article VII of the Constitution provides that the President shall have control of all executive departments. the conduct of management audits. pursuant to her powers under the Constitution and existing laws. including but not limited to. the Secretary of Labor. WHEREAS. the Secretary of Labor has recommended that the President. otherwise known as the "Labor Code of the Philippines. Title VII. I. as well as infuse the organization with a sense of public service in consonance with the imperative of change for the greater interest of the people. GLORIA MACAPAGAL ARROYO. Generally oversee the operations of the NLRC and its regional and sub-regional branches or provincial extension units for the purpose of ensuring that cases pending before them are decided or resolved expeditiously. Chapter 6. has informed the President that there is a need to expedite the disposition of labor cases pending before the NLRC and all its regional and sub-regional branches or provincial extension units and initiate potent measures to prevent graft and corruption therein so as to reform its systems and personnel. all its regional branches and personnel to the NLRC Chairman. Require the submission of reports as the Secretary of Labor may deem necessary. otherwise known as the "Revised Administrative Code of 1987" (the "Administrative Code"). the NLRC. Section 16. c. 1989. became an agency attached to the DOLE for policy and program coordination and administrative supervision." is an agency under the Executive Department and was originally envisaged as being an integral part of the Department (then Ministry) of Labor and Employment (DOLE) under the administrative supervision of the Secretary of Labor and Employment ("Secretary of Labor"). the National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC) which was created by virtue of Presidential Decree No. WHEREAS. performance 108 . authorize the Secretary of Labor to exercise administrative supervision over the NLRC and all its regional and sub-regional branches or provincial extension units with the objective of improving the rate of disposition of pending cases and institute adequate measures for the prevention of graft and corruption within the said agency. Article III of the Constitution guarantees the right of all persons to a speedy disposition of their cases before all judicial. after evaluating the NLRC’s performance record in the last five (5) years. WHEREAS. including the rate of disposition of pending cases before it. which provides that the NLRC shall be attached to the DOLE for program and policy coordination only and transferred administrative supervision over the NLRC. by virtue of the powers vested in me by the Constitution and existing laws. – The Secretary of Labor is hereby authorized to exercise administrative supervision over the NLRC. Chapter 6. bureaus and offices and shall ensure that the laws be faithfully executed. the Secretary of Labor shall. 6715 approved on March 2. b. Book IV of the Administrative Code were amended by Republic Act. including the Executive Labor Arbiters and Labor Arbiters. Book IV thereof. its regional branches and all its personnel. WHEREAS. 292. NOW. do hereby order: SECTION 1. THEREFORE. Article 213 of the Labor Code and Section 25. after consultations with the relevant sectors.WHEREAS. President of the Republic of the Philippines. upon the issuance of Executive Order No. No. Title VII. Initiate measures within the agency to prevent graft and corruption. quasi-judicial and administrative bodies. with the objective of improving the rate of disposition of cases pending before it and its regional and sub-regional branches or provincial extension units and to institute adequate measures for the prevention of graft and corruption within the said agency. 442. Authority To Exercise Administrative Supervision. For this purpose. WHEREAS. among others: a. Section 17. WHEREAS. by virtue of Section 25.

through its Chairman. namely: (1) the existence of an appropriate case. commission. It is hornbook doctrine that the exercise of the power of judicial review requires the concurrence of the following requisites.6 The constitutionality of a governmental act having been challenged. Rules and Regulations. March 10. SECTION 3. All laws. 2003. SECTION 2. or modified accordingly. rules and regulations or parts thereof which are inconsistent with the provisions of this Executive Order are hereby repealed. or modify the decisions of the NLRC in the exercise of its quasi-judicial functions (cf. and e. After completing his/her investigation. including rectification of violations. in consultation with the Chairman of the NLRC. it comes as no surprise that the first line of defense is to question the standing of petitioners and the justiciability of herein case. Administrative Code). SECTION 4. including Presidential appointees. by Division and by the Labor Arbiters in each of its regional and sub-regional branches or provincial extension units. rules and regulations. executive issuances. Repealing Clause. SECTION 5. Section 38(2) (b). revise. on the following matters: a. To take such action as may be necessary for the proper performance of official functions. department. The authority conferred herein upon the Secretary of Labor shall not extend to the power to review. the Office of the Ombudsman or any other office. – The Secretary of Labor. Performance Report/Audit for the last five (5) years. Book IV. Such other matters as may be required by the Secretary of Labor. d. in accordance with existing laws. b. Investigate. committee. abuses and other forms of mal-administration. – The NLRC. agency. Complete inventory of its assets and list of personnel indicating their present positions and stations. – This Executive Order shall take effect immediately upon the completion of its publication in the Official Gazette or in a newspaper of general circulation in the country. amended. standards and guidelines. and d. Chapter 7. instrumentality or branch of the government for appropriate action. shall submit a report to the Secretary of Labor within thirty (30) days from issuance of this Executive Order. on its own or upon complaint. the Secretary of Labor shall submit a report to the President on the investigation conducted with a recommendation as to the penalty to be imposed or other action to be taken. is hereby authorized to issue rules and regulations for the effective implementation of the provisions of this Executive Order. (2) an interest personal and 109 . including referral to the Presidential Anti-Graft Commission (PAGC). Effectivity. Report to the Secretary of Labor.evaluations and inspections to determine compliance with established policies. matters involving disciplinary action against any of the NLRC’s personnel. c. including list of pending cases and cases disposed of within the said period by the NLRC en banc. reverse. Detailed Master Plan on how to liquidate its backlog of cases with clear timetables to clean up its dockets within six (6) months from the issuance hereof. City of Manila.

All told. only Congress. The subject matter of E. Herstein and Rafferty. The function of the courts is to determine controversies between litigants and not to give advisory opinions.18 the subject executive order can be considered as nothing more or less than a command from a superior to an inferior.nét As correctly pointed out by respondents.15 A taxpayer’s suit is properly brought only when there is an exercise of the spending or taxing power of Congress. and if at all. if we were to follow the strict rule on locus standi.7 1awphi1. 185 does not even require for its implementation additional appropriation. he must establish that he has suffered some actual or threatened injury as a result of the allegedly illegal conduct of the government. It creates no relation except between the official who issued it and the officials who received it."11 For a citizen to have standing. As labor unions representing their members. can claim any injury14 from the alleged executive encroachment of the legislative function to amend. not even in the fifty thousand or so union members being 110 .9 Even with the presence of an actual case or controversy. No. (3) the plea that the function be exercised at the earliest opportunity. the injury is fairly traceable to the challenged action. It has for its object simply the efficient and economical administration of the affairs of the department to which it is issued in accordance with the law governing the subject matter. No. No. it cannot be said that E. 185 will prejudice their rights and interests considering that the scope of the authority conferred upon the Secretary of Labor does not extend to the power to review. Moreover. sans the challenge to its constitutionality.O. may be said to have a direct and specific interest in raising the substantive issue herein.O. The rule on standing. 185.12 Petitioners have not shown that they have sustained or are in danger of sustaining any personal injury attributable to the enactment of E. the Court may refuse to exercise judicial review unless the constitutional question is brought before it by a party having the requisite standing to challenge it. revise or modify the decisions of the NLRC in the exercise of its quasi-judicial functions. 185 is the grant of authority by the President to the Secretary of Labor to exercise administrative supervision over the NLRC. Taking our cue from the early case of Olsen v. is thereby limited to the departments to which it is addressed.16 As correctly pointed out by respondents. Its impact. is a matter of procedure. however. hence. No.10 Legal standing or locus standi is defined as a "personal and substantial interest in the case such that the party has sustained or will sustain direct injury as a result of the governmental act that is being challenged.O. only NLRC personnel who may find themselves the subject of the Secretary of Labor’s disciplinary authority. conferred by Section 1(d) of the subject executive order. taxpayers and legislators when the public interest so requires.substantial by the party raising the constitutional question.8 The power of judicial review can only be exercised in connection with a bona fide case or controversy which involves the statute sought to be reviewed.O. of overarching significance to society.nét The question is. E. including the Executive Labor Arbiters and Labor Arbiters. and the injury is likely to be redressed by a favorable action. and not petitioners. Neither can standing be conferred on petitioners as taxpayers since petitioners have not established disbursement of public funds in contravention of law or the Constitution. reverse. judicial review cannot be exercised in vacuo. this petition should be forthwith dismissed on that score. or of paramount public interest. can be relaxed for nontraditional plaintiffs like ordinary citizens. hence.17 1awphi1. such as when the matter is of transcendental importance.13 Thus. does the issue posed in this petition meet the exacting standard required for this Court to take the liberal approach and recognize the standing of herein petitioners? The instant petition fails to persuade us. and (4) the necessity that the constitutional question be passed upon in order to decide the case. Administrative in its nature. it has not created any rights in third persons. the subject order does not pass beyond the limits of the departments to which it is directed. its regional branches and all its personnel. modify and/or repeal laws.

L-52245. pp.represented by petitioners who may or may not have pending cases before the labor arbiters or the NLRC. People v. and. concur. . 22 January 1980. SJ. It is intended "to assure a vigorous adversary presentation of the case. The rationale for this constitutional requirement of locus standi is by no means trifle.R. Davide. For courts to indiscriminately open their doors to all types of suits and suitors is for them to unduly overburden their dockets. Azcuna. In fine. Callejo. . 11 SO ORDERED.O.. 185 is indeed unconstitutional will have to await the proper party in a proper case to assail its validity. To be sure.. and Garcia. this is an evil that clearly confronts our judiciary today. 111 . 18 October 1990.R. 15-18. perhaps more importantly to warrant the judiciary’s overruling the determination of a coordinate. Bernas.65 Phil. as cited in Dumlao v. Carpio. No. Signed into law on 25 July 1987. Quisumbing. 8 9 All things considered. 2-10.. 141284 . WHEREFORE. No. Panganiban. Tinga.." 20 It thus goes to the very essence of representative democracies. No costs. Vera. 91500. pp. 6 Rollo. G. this is not one of those exceptional occasions where the Court is justified in sweeping aside a critical procedural requirement. its impact confined to corridors of the executive department.G. 939.). the capacity of courts to render efficient judicial service to our people is severely limited. v. 81. democratically elected organ of government. 338 SCRA. Given the sparseness of our resources. whether or not E. the instant petition dated 27 March 2003 is hereby DISMISSED for lack of merit. A lesser but not insignificant reason for screening the standing of persons who desire to litigate constitutional issues is economic in character. pp. Footnotes 1 Rollo. G. No. C. Ynares-Santiago. Justice Reynato S. p. (Acting C. 56 [1937]. Inc. Ibid. Puno. at 11-20. Republic.J. 7-8. As succinctly put by Mr. Otherwise known as the Administrative Code of 1987. Sr. Comelec. 5 Id. at 69-76. 4 Id. and ultimately render themselves ineffective dispensers of justice. Austria-Martinez. Corona. 95 SCRA 392. premises considered. JJ. 400.. 10 Integrated Bar of the Philippines. rooted as it is in the constitutionally enshrined principle of separation of powers. CarpioMorales. 190 SCRA 782. 15 August 2000. considering that the governmental act being questioned has a limited reach. . 2 3 Rollo. Jr. The 1987 Constitution of the Republic of the Philippines A Commentary.J.R. Sandoval-Gutierrez. 2003 Edition. [C]ourts are neither free to decide all kinds of cases dumped into their laps nor are they free to open their doors to all parties or entities claiming a grievance.. on leave. No. Puno in his dissenting opinion in the first Kilosbayan case:19 . 100. 7 Allied Broadcasting Center.

Citing Dorsen. 15 December 1915. 124360 and 127867 . 11138. 741. Political and Civil Rights in the United States. The Court held that E. 140835 .R. 1955 PHILIPPINE ASSOCIATION OF COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES. 16 Ibid. G. 12 13 demonstrates clearly the impossibility of any other person enforcing [it] except the one who created [it]. 22 January 1980. Incorporated v. Vicente G. 404. 208 SCRA 420. Fariñas. G. BENGZON. 05 May 1994.: The petitioning colleges and universities request that Act No. COMELEC. 3075 and Commonwealth Act No. 113375. No. Kilosbayan.R. 15001. G. 140835 . 402 SCRA 612.. Dinglasan 84 Phil. Bender. G. 232 SCRA 110. Pagcor. Gallego and Enrique M. They deprive owners of schools and colleges as well as teachers and parents of liberty and property without due process of law.O. v. G. Inc. 14 August 2000. No. COMELEC. 740 citing Telecommunications and Broadcast Attorneys of the Philippines. 368 (1949). et al. No. Manuel C. I. 112 .R. 18 EN BANC G. 197 SCRA 52. 06 May 1992. Jr. 2000.. This was a case for mandamus filed by an exporter of cigars to compel the Insular Collector of Customs or the Collector of Internal Revenue – ostensibly pursuant to E.Gonzales v.R. Vol. 14 May 1991. 289 SCRA 337. No..R. 19 Executive Order No. Nos. 515-517. Sinco. because: A.O. Narvasa.R. 14. Nos. 100318. 10 December 2003. 155547 & 155661 . They deprive parents of their natural rights and duty to rear their children for civic efficiency. et al. L-52245. 417 SCRA 503. 337 SCRA 733. and C. p. 4th ed. Their provisions conferring on the Secretary of Education unlimited power and discretion to prescribe rules and standards constitute an unlawful delegation of legislative power. De Guia v. 1200. 180 be declared unconstitutional. Briones. Guingona. G. 343.. 05 May 2003. Philippine International Air Terminals Co. 14 August 2000.R. COMELEC. 199 SCRA 750.. Secretary of the Department of Energy. Fernando for petitioner. v. Neuborne. No. 91649. G. Araneta v. Jr. 139. 14 15 Ibid. Jr. No. G. No. 757. G. No. 21 April 1998. 532). 2706 as amended by Act No. Osmeña v.. Agan. G. 113375. 645-646.R. 17 G. petitioner. respondents. Tatad v.R. L-5279 October 31. 41 conferred no legal right on anyone as its "very nature. Office of the Solicitor General Pompeyo Diaz and Assistant Solicitor General Francisco Carreon for respondents. Manuel V. Narvasa. 100417 and 100420.422. 147387 & 152161 .R.R. 520. G. 169-171. G. Commission on Elections. as determined by the relationship which produced [it]. 60. 104712.R. 05 May 1994. No.R. 95 SCRA 392. 20 Gonzales v. 349. SECRETARY OF EDUCATION and the BOARD OF TEXTBOOKS. No. Executive Secretary. 30 July 1991. Aug. vs. Inc. 232 SCRA 110. Guingona. Nos. v. J. Section 1 (last paragraph). ETC.R. Nos. 281 SCRA 330. Kilosbayan v. B. 132922 . Basco v. Dumlao v." (32 Phil. 05 November 1997. No.. 337 SCRA 733. 41 dated 7 May 1909 – to issue a certificate of origin of cigars about to be exported to the United States. 185. No.

amounts to censorship of previous restraint. 207. nay. Maryland. They have suffered no wrong under the terms of law—and. 323 U. 493. The Government's legal representative submitted a mimeographed memorandum contending that. 316-325. the constitutionality of a statute will be passed on only if. S. 2706 as amended which provides that before a private school may be opened to the public it must first obtain a permit from the Secretary of Education. petitioners suffered no wrong—nor allege any—from the enforcement of the criticized statute. conscious of the fallability of the human judgment. p. (Cooley Constitutional Limitations. because all of them have permits to operate and are actually operating by virtue of their permits.) The power of courts to declare a law unconstitutional arises only when the interests of litigant require the use of that 113 . and (3) the Acts are constitutionally valid.. the Court may refuse to consider an attack on its validity. I. S. Act No. then." Under its provisions. (C. (1) the matter constitutes no justiciable controversy exhibiting unavoidable necessity of deciding the constitutional questions. 633 82 L. It is an established principle that to entitle a private individual immediately in danger of sustaining a direct injury as the result of that action and it is not sufficient that he has merely a general to invoke the judicial power to determine the validity of executive or legislative action he must show that he has sustained or is interest common to all members of the public. S. S. specially where. Ed. (Ex parte Levitt. as respondents assert. p. 405. 235 U. with the general acquiescence of the general public and the parties concerned. (Tyler vs.) When a law has been long treated as constitutional and important rights have become dependent thereon. J. (2) petitioners are in estoppel to challenge the validity of the said acts. 179 U.1 And they do not assert that the respondent Secretary of Education has threatened to revoke their permits. it is directly and necessarily involved in a justiciable controversy and is essential to the protection of the rights of the parties concerned. and any law requiring previous governmental approval or permit before such person could exercise said right. 610. 2706 approved in 1917 is entitled. that this Court should be doubly reluctant to consider petitioner's demand for avoidance of the law aforesaid. 8th Ed. the Department of Education has. Petitioners submitted a lengthy reply to the above arguments. J. It should be understandable. p. (16 C. 16. 302 U.) Courts will not pass upon the constitutionality of a law upon the complaint of one who fails to show that he is injured by its operation. a practice abhorent to our system of law and government.) In support of their first proposition petitioners contend that the right of a citizen to own and operate a school is guaranteed by the Constitution. and to the extent that. S.) As a general rule... Coffman vs. Vol. Judges. "An Act making the inspection and recognition of private schools and colleges obligatory for the Secretary of Public Instruction. Hendrick vs. 332. supervised and regulated all private schools in this country apparently without audible protest. The Solicitor General on the other hand points out that none of the petitioners has cause to present this issue. naturally need no relief in the form they now seek to obtain. will shrink from exercising in any case where he can conscientiously and with due regard to duty and official oath decline the responsibility. It must be evident to any one that the power to declare a legislative enactment void is one which the judge. S. Breeze Corp. for the past 37 years. 204.A printed memorandum explaining their position in extenso is attached to the record. Petitioners obviously refer to section 3 of Act No.

Rep. The suggestion has been made with the reference to the private institutions of university grade that some board of control be organized under 114 . p.judicial authority for their protection against actual interference. a hypothetical threat being insufficient. The authority to pass on the validity of statutes is incidental to the decision of such cases where conflicting claims under the Constitution and under a legislative act assailed as contrary to the Constitution are raised. 3162 creating a Board of Educational Survey to make a study and survey of education in the Philippines and of all educational institutions. made a five-month thorough and impartial examination of the local educational system." a private adventure school must first be inspected by the proper Government official.) 197 S. January. Why? In March 1924 the Philippine Legislature approved Act No.. W. Winchester Waterworks (Ky. Petitioners complain that before opening a school the owner must secure a permit from the Secretary of Education.S. greed. 771. 511. Mitchell. Law Ed. 2706. (Tañada and Fernando. (Salonga vs. U. nay. 1951. 99. 1995. earnest. That it should be permitted to exist with almost no supervision is indefensible. 2d. Conclusion. assisted by a staff of carefully selected technical members performed the task. facilities and agencies thereof. for then there comes into play regard for the court's duty to avoid decision of constitutional issues unless avoidance becomes evasion.) Bona fide suit.—An unprejudiced consideration of the fact presented under the caption Private Adventure Schools leads but to one conclusion. Ct. to obtain actual and positive relief. no one knows. and as necessity in the determination of real. S. as the Division of Private Schools keeps records only of the recognized type. like this. in view of the several decisions of the United States Supreme Court quoted by petitioners. Warner Barnes. lest they may allege we refuse to act even in the face of clear violation of fundamental personal rights of liberty and property. or even immoral character. 330 U . (Cf." (Rice vs. How many.: the great majority of them from primary grade to university are money-making devices for the profit of those who organize and administer them. 91 L. It is legitimate only in the last resort. 75. The following paragraphs are taken from such report: PRIVATE-ADVENTURE SCHOOLS Mere apprehension that the Secretary of Education might under the law withdraw the permit of one of petitioners does not constitute a justiciable controversy. Vol.) was not originally included in Act No.—Judicial power is limited to the decision of actual cases and controversies. however intellectually solid the problem may be. Columbia University.) Courts do not sit to adjudicate mere academic questions to satisfy scholarly interest therein. It is obvious that the system constitutes a great evil.) And action. Ed. Sioux City. Such requirement There is no law or regulation in the Philippine Islands today to prevent a person. Paul Munroe. is brought for a positive purpose. p. A Board chairmaned by Dr.) The above notwithstanding. and vital controversy between litigants. 1138. It it true that in order to post over the door "Recognized by the Government. 180 approved in 1936.. Sup. printed as a book of 671 pages. apparently outlawing censorship of the kind objected to by them. but a refusal to grant such recognition does not by any means result in such a school ceasing to exist. Com. and submitted a report with recommendations. 754. however disqualified by ignorance. ex rel Watkins vs. As a matter of fact. It was introduced by Commonwealth Act No. This is specially true where the issues "reach constitutional dimensions. The people whose children and youth attend them are not getting what they pay for. from opening a school to teach the young. (United Public Works vs. L-2245. there are more such unrecognized private schools than of the recognized variety. Adv. we have decided to look into the matter. viz. May 23. Constitution of the Philippines.

5." (Art.legislative control to supervise their administration. and that the continued existence of the school be dependent upon its continuing to conform to these conditions: (1) The location and construction of the buildings. J. of what constitutes a 'general standard of efficiency. The Commission believes that the recommendations it offers at the end of this chapter are more likely to bring about the needed reforms. or factors. 2706 which. in accordance with the class and grade of instruction given in them. provides: It shall be the duty of the Secretary of Public Instruction to maintain a general standard of efficiency in all private schools and colleges of the Philippines so that the same shall furnish adequate instruction to the public. The Commission recommends 40 as a maximum. which the Secretary of Education must take into account to determine the 'efficiency of instruction. XIV. Recommendations.) The power to regulate establishments or business occupations implies the power to require a permit or license. school furniture and apparatus. acts. (2) The library and laboratory facilities shall be adequate to the needs of instruction in the subjects taught. the lighting and ventilation of the rooms. And if any doubt still exists. recourse may now be had to the provision of our Constitution that "All educational institutions shall be under the supervision and subject to regulation by the State. sec. and methods of cleaning shall be such as to insure hygienic conditions for both pupils and teachers.) What goes for the "previous permit" naturally goes for the power to revoke such permit on account of violation of rules or regulations of the Department. can there be any doubt that the Government in the exercise of its police power to correct "a great evil" could validly establish the "previous permit" system objected to by petitioners? This is what differentiates our law from the other statutes declared invalid in other jurisdictions.' Nowhere in this Act is there any indication of any basis or condition to ascertain what is 'adequate instruction to the public. closets. II. xxx xxx xxx In view of these findings and recommendations. 4. (53 C.' Nowhere in this Act is there any statement of conditions.—The Commission recommends that legislation be enacted to prohibit the opening of any school by an individual or organization without the permission of the Secretary of Public Instruction. "Nowhere in this Act" petitioners argue "can one find any description." This attack is specifically aimed at section 1 of Act No. and for this purpose said Secretary or his duly authorized representative shall have authority to advise. S. as amended. This brings us to the petitioners' third proposition that the questioned statutes "conferring on the Secretary of Education unlimited power and discretion to prescribe rules and standards constitute an unlawful delegation of legislative power. and regulate said schools and colleges in order to determine the efficiency of instruction given in the same. That before granting such permission the Secretary assure himself that such school measures up to proper standards in the following respects. water supply. inspect. the nature of the lavatories. (3) The classes shall not show an excessive number of pupils per teacher. either general or specific. (4) The teachers shall meet qualifications equal to those of teachers in the public schools of the same grade.'" The attack on this score is also extended to section 6 which provides: The Department of Education shall from time to time prepare and publish in pamphlet form the minimum standards 115 .

For it needs no argument.) 116 . indefinite and uncertain"—and for that reason constitutionality objectionable. Which only shows that the Legislature did and could. In plain language. the statute turns over to the Secretary of Education the exclusive authority of the legislature to formulate standard.. we find the defendants' position to be sufficiently sustained by the decision in Alegra vs. medical. 73 Phil.) On this phase of the litigation we conclude that there has been no undue delegation of legislative power. maguey and sisal" against vigorous attacks on the ground of invalid delegation of legislative power." It is quite clear the two sections empower and require the Secretary of Education to prescribe rules fixing minimum standards of adequate and efficient instruction to be observed by all such private schools and colleges as may be permitted to operate. and high schools. dental. True. Collector of Customs. (Santiago vs. Petitioners reason out. The best answer is that despite such alleged vagueness the Secretary of Education has fixed standards to ensure adequate and efficient instruction. and to support their position that the law and the Secretary of Education have transcended the governmental power of supervision and regulation. . the school calendars. been satisfactorily in operation for 37 years. Anyway. 394 upon holding the statute that authorized the Director of Agriculture to "designate standards for the commercial grades of abaca. "this section leaves everything to the uncontrolled discretion of the Secretary of Education or his department. no reason exists for them to assail the validity of the power nor the exercise of the power by the Secretary of Education. Wherefore. in proper administrative or judicial proceedings— not to invalidate the law. Constitution of the Philippines. their remedy is to challenge those regulations specifically. The petitioners contend that as the legislature has not fixed the standards. as shown by the memoranda fixing or revising curricula. petitioners do not show how these standards have injured any of them or interfered with their operation.. agricultural and other medical or vocational schools or colleges giving instruction of a technical. validly rely upon the educational experience and training of those in charge of the Department of Education to ascertain and formulate minimum requirements of adequate instruction as the basis of government recognition of any private school. "the provision is extremely vague. admission and accreditation of students etc. The Secretary of Education is given the power to fix the standard. engineering. Indeed "adequate and efficient instruction" should be considered sufficient. 53 Phil. and it is one of our decisional practices that unless a constitutional point is specifically raised. pharmaceutical. 408. in the same way as "public welfare" "necessary in the interest of law and order" "public interest" and "justice and equity and substantial merits of the case" have been held sufficient as legislative standards justifying delegation of authority to regulate. At any rate. entrance and final examinations." Nevertheless. the petitioners appended a list of circulars and memoranda issued by the said Department. in general. Far Eastern. the court will not consider it. Bachelor of Science. insisted upon and adequately argued. and/or to ring those inspectors to book. vocational or professional character. However they failed to indicate which of such official documents was constitutionally objectionable for being "capricious.. and colleges granting the degrees of Bachelor of Arts.required of primary. In this connection. citing Philippine cases." or pain "nuisance". or any other academic degree. the petitioners assert that. 793. (See Tañada and Fernando. It shall also from time to time prepare and publish in pamphlet form the minimum standards required of law. intermediate. and the system of private education has. the Secretary has issued rules and regulations "whimsical and capricious" and that such discretionary power has produced arrogant inspectors who "bully heads and teachers of private schools. p. . to show that abuse by the officials entrusted with the execution of a statute does not per se demonstrate the unconstitutionality of such statute. ..

colleges and universities and President of the Philippines may authorize the Secretary of Instruction to levy an equitable assessment from each private educational institution equivalent to one percent of the total amount accruing from tuition and other fees: . Government of the Philippine Constitution. Conceivably some of them are of this nature. and to revoke such permits for cause. p. It is clear in our opinion that the statute does not in express terms give the Secretary completecontrol. and quotes from the proceedings of the Constitutional Convention to prove that State control of private education was intended by the organic law. the liberty to teach etc. and instruction in the duties of citizenship.We are told that such list will give an idea of how the statute has placed in the hands of the Secretary of Education complete control of the various activities of private schools. It gives him powers to inspect private schools. That for additional expenses in the supervision and regulation of private schools. the development of moral character. colleges and universities and in the purchase of textbook to be sold to student of said schools. Philippine Constitutional Law. convenience or relevancy of the measures criticized by them. If any of such Department circulars or memoranda issued by the Secretary go beyond the bounds of regulation and seeks to establish complete control. This does not amount to complete control. Vol. A more expeditious and perhaps more technically competent forum exists. (See also Republic Act No. In any event with the recent approval of Republic Act No. and why the statute should be struck down as unconstitutional. the petitioners have omitted to specify. 176. however. and in so far as they seek to recover fees already 117 . college or university shall be sufficient cause for the cancellation by the Secretary of Instruction of the permit for recognition granted to it.) The Solicitor General cities many authorities to show that the power to regulate means power to control. personal discipline. it would surely be invalid. Philippine Social Life and Progress. civic conscience and vocational efficiency. Benitez. (Malcolm & Laurel. The Solicitor General on the other hand argues that insofar as petitioners' action attempts to restrain the further collection of the assessment. It is enough to point out that local educators and writers think the Constitution provides for control of Education by the State. to be invalid as taxes on the exercise of a constitutional right. wherein to discuss the necessity. It is significant to note that the Constitution grants power to supervise and to regulate. in the same way that taxes on the privilege of selling religious literature or of publishing a newspaper—both constitutional privileges—have been held. (See Tolentino. The total annual expense of the Office of Private Education shall be met by the regular amount appropriated in the annual Appropriation Act: Provided. the question arises whether the power of supervision and regulation granted to the State by section 5 Article XIV was meant to include control of private educational institutions. to give them official permits to operate under certain conditions. II. 1124 creating the National Board of Education. Petitioners maintain that this is a tax on the exercise of a constitutional right—the right to open a school. They claim this is unconstitutional. 2706 as amended by Republic Act No. to regulate their activities. 1936. The statute is section 11-A of Act No. courts have no jurisdiction to restrain the collection of taxes by injunction. and non-payment of the assessment herein provided by any private school. 335. 615. 11-A.) The Constitution (it) "provides for state control of all educational institutions" even as it enumerates certain fundamental objectives of all education to wit. opportunity for administrative correction of the supposed anomalies or encroachments is amply afforded herein petitioners. . 74 which reads as follows: SEC. Which may mean greater power than mere regulation. but besides not having before us the text of such circulars. III. . p.) If however the statutes in question actually give the Secretary control over private schools. Another grievance of petitioners—probably the most significant— is the assessment of 1 per cent levied on gross receipts of all private schools for additional Government expenses in connection with their supervision and regulation. in the United States.

For instance. This power of the Board. the action involving "the legality of any tax impost or assessment" falls within the original jurisdiction of Courts of First Instance. Why should not the State prohibit the use of textbooks that are illegal. which should best be carried out in the lower courts. 5) to supervise and regulate private schools. Much depends. maybe the law is valid. or which it may deem pedagogically unsuitable. of possible educational dictatorship or thought control. upon the execution and implementation of the statute. no justiciable controversy has been presented to us. or which it may find to be against the general policies of the government. Anyway he concludes. it is one against the State without its consent. 139 which in its section 1 provides: The textbooks to be used in the private schools recognized or authorized by the government shall be submitted to the Board (Board of Textbooks) which shall have the power to prohibit the use of any of said textbooks which it may find to be against the law or to offend the dignity and honor of the government and people of the Philippines. petitioners now have a more expeditious remedy thru an administrative appeal to the National Board of Education created by Republic Act 1124. and are in danger of losing substantial privileges or rights for so refusing. and again. after all administrative remedies are exhausted. The last grievance of petitioners relates to the validity of Republic Act No. cases (Miss. The question is really whether the law may be enacted in the exercise of the State's constitutional power (Art. the exaction may be upheld. 118 . There are good grounds in support of Government's position. petitioners aver. that when and if. They cite two U. If this levy of 1 per cent is truly a mere fee—and not a tax—to finance the cost of the Department's duty and power to regulate and supervise private schools. sec. as petitioners' counsel foresee with obvious alarm. If that power amounts to control of private schools. states where constitutional control of private schools is not expressly produced. as herein previously noted. The average lawyer who reads the above quoted section of Republic Act 139 will fail to perceive anything objectionable. as some think it is. Herein lies another important issue submitted in the cause. If on the other hand it is a tax. no cause for complaint will arise and no occasion for judicial review will develop. But if the power to control education ismerely implied from the police power. the dangers they apprehend materialize and judicial intervention is suitably invoked. and Minnesota) outlawing statutes that impose previous restraints upon publication of newspapers. petitioners' issue would still be within the original jurisdiction of the Courts of First Instance. But if the Board on Textbooks in its actuations strictly adheres to the letter of the section and wisely steers a middle course between the Scylla of "dictatorship" and the Charybdis of "thought control". Anyway. however. or that the petitioners refused or intend to refuse to submit some textbooks. However. it is feasible to uphold the express individual right. S. Of course it is necessary to assure herein petitioners. An express power is necessarily more extensive than a mere implied power. In this connection we do not share the belief that section 5 has added new power to what the State inherently possesses by virtue of the police power. XIV. but such point involves investigation and examination of relevant data. if there is conflict between an express individual right and the express power to control private education it cannot offhand be said that the latter must yield to the former—conflict of two express powers. of Mississippi and Minnesota. is censorship in "its baldest form". We are not informed that the Board on Textbooks has prohibited this or that text. Not that constitutionality depends necessarily upon the law's effects. the courts will not shrink from their duty to delimit constitutional boundaries and protect individual liberties. or curtail the right of individuals to disseminate teachings critical of government institutions or policies. or offensive to the Filipinos or adverse to governmental policies or educationally improper? What's the power of regulation and supervision for? But those trained to the investigation of constitutional issues are likely to apprehend the danger to civil liberties. as was probably the situation in the two decisions brought to our attention.paid the suit.

: This is an original Petition for Mandamus with prayer for a writ of preliminary injunction and a temporary restraining order. through the Commissioner of Public Highways. 449. reserving to the petitioners the right to institute in the proper court. No. personal discipline. petitioner. The petition further seeks to enjoin PEA from signing a new agreement with AMARI involving such reclamation. Montenegro vs. Castañeda. (Fahey vs. CHAVEZ. The Facts On November 20.. signed a contract with the Construction and Development Corporation of the Philippines ("CDCP" for brevity) to reclaim certain foreshore and offshore areas of Manila Bay. Phil. Gaz (8) 3392. Reyes. in their schools. Mallonee. So ordered. 2002 FRANCISCO I." (Art. 96 Phil.) Would petitioners assert that pursuant to their civil liberties under the Bill of Rights they may refuse to teach in their schools the duties of citizenship or that they may authorize the broadcast therein of immoral doctrines? CARPIO. J. Footnotes EN BANC 1 Court will not pass upon the validity of statute at the instance of one who has availed itself of its benefits. C. 245. J. and Jugo. S. The contract also included the construction of Phases I and II of the 119 . 3 It should be observed that petitioners may not assert complete liberty to teach. For all the foregoing considerations. 133250 July 9.. concur. and at the proper time. G. JJ. civil conscience and vocational efficiency and to teach the duties of citizenship. respondents.. 1973. Scrappers Inc. Padilla.IV. vs. such actions as may call for decision of the issue herein presented by them. PUBLIC ESTATES AUTHORITY and AMARI COASTAL BAY DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION. because the Constitution says "All schools shall aim to develop moral character. 48 Off. the government. Ed.R. as or what they please. Paras. The petition seeks to compel the Public Estates Authority ("PEA" for brevity) to disclose all facts on PEA's then on-going renegotiations with Amari Coastal Bay and Development Corporation ("AMARI" for brevity) to reclaim portions of Manila Bay. 5. Montemayor. XIV.. 322 U. Auditor-General. vs.) 2 Cf. 91 L. A. Sec. this petition for prohibition will be denied. 2030.

1085 transferring to PEA the "lands reclaimed in the foreshore and offshore of the Manila Bay" 2 under the Manila-Cavite Coastal Road and Reclamation Project (MCCRRP). 1988. retention and other terms and conditions provided for in Presidential Decree No. x x x lease and sell any and all kinds of lands. and 7312. then President Marcos issued Presidential Decree No."3 On January 19.4 On April 28. CDCP obligated itself to carry out all the works in consideration of fifty percent of the total reclaimed land.5 On June 8. to be paid according to progress of works on a unit price/lump sum basis for items of work to be agreed upon. on April 9. title. On December 29.894) square meters. PEA and AMARI entered into the JVA through negotiation without public bidding.441) square meters or 157. a private corporation. 1084 creating PEA. 1245. approved the JVA. confirmed the JVA. On April 25. 1977. which stated: "(i) CDCP shall undertake all reclamation. then President Corazon C.578. 1997. PD No. improve. 7309. xxx (iii) x x x CDCP shall give up all its development rights and hereby agrees to cede and transfer in favor of PEA." As a result.841 hectares. Marcos issued Presidential Decree No. to develop the Freedom Islands. conducted a joint investigation. 1981 which have not yet been sold. The JVA also required the reclamation of an additional 250 hectares of submerged areas surrounding these islands to complete the configuration in the Master Development Plan of the Southern Reclamation Project-MCCRRP. 1988. the Board of Directors of PEA. then Senate President Ernesto Maceda delivered a privilege speech in the Senate and denounced the JVA as the "grandmother of all scams. Aquino issued Special Patent No. acquire."1 On the same date. 7 Among the conclusions of their report are: (1) the reclaimed lands PEA seeks to 120 . PEA and CDCP executed a Memorandum of Agreement dated December 29. in its Resolution No. including foreshore and submerged areas." and "to develop. 1084 tasked PEA "to reclaim land." Accordingly. 560 dated September 16.6 On November 29. in the name of PEA. 1594.915. then President Marcos issued a memorandum directing PEA to amend its contract with CDCP. subject to price escalation. then President Fidel V. 1981. Parañaque City.Manila-Cavite Coastal Road. and such other works in the MCCRRP as may be agreed upon by the parties. On February 4. 1995. the Register of Deeds of the Municipality of Parañaque issued Transfer Certificates of Title Nos. 5 and approximately Three Million Three Hundred Eighty Two Thousand Eight Hundred Eighty Eight (3. Ramos. and the Committee on Accountability of Public Officers and Investigations. 7311. 1981. all of the rights. 1995. through then Executive Secretary Ruben Torres. covering the three reclaimed islands known as the "Freedom Islands" located at the southern portion of the Manila-Cavite Coastal Road. 3517. which areas consist of approximately Ninety-Nine Thousand Four Hundred Seventy Three (99. The Freedom Islands have a total land area of One Million Five Hundred Seventy Eight Thousand Four Hundred and Forty One (1.888) square meters of reclaimed areas at varying elevations above Mean Low Water Level located outside the Financial Center Area and the First Neighborhood Unit. 1996.473) square meters in the Financial Center Area covered by land pledge No. The Senate Committees reported the results of their investigation in Senate Committee Report No. construction. so that "[A]ll future works in MCCRRP x x x shall be funded and owned by PEA. transferred or otherwise disposed of by CDCP as of said date. the Senate Committee on Government Corporations and Public Enterprises.382. All the financing required for such works shall be provided by PEA. then President Ferdinand E. interest and participation of CDCP in and to all the areas of land reclaimed by CDCP in the MCCRRP as of December 30. 1995." Subsequently. granting and transferring to PEA "the parcels of land so reclaimed under the Manila-Cavite Coastal Road and Reclamation Project (MCCRRP) containing a total area of one million nine hundred fifteen thousand eight hundred ninety four (1. PEA entered into a Joint Venture Agreement ("JVA" for brevity) with AMARI.

petitioner filed an Omnibus Motion: (a) to require PEA to submit the terms of the renegotiated PEA-AMARI contract. (2) the certificates of title covering the Freedom Islands are thus void. No. WHETHER THE PRINCIPAL RELIEFS PRAYED FOR IN THE PETITION ARE MOOT AND ACADEMIC BECAUSE OF SUBSEQUENT EVENTS." 12 On April 27. On May 28. 1998 and June 25.transfer to AMARI under the JVA are lands of the public domain which the government has not classified as alienable lands and therefore PEA cannot alienate these lands. Meanwhile. 121 . and Section 7. The Court dismissed the petition "for unwarranted disregard of judicial hierarchy. 560. invoking Section 28. petitioner now prays that on "constitutional and statutory grounds the renegotiated contract be declared null and void. On April 13. 1999. Antonio M.11 On April 4 and 5. and (3) the JVA itself is illegal. 1999. which the Court denied in a Resolution dated June 22. filed the instant Petition for Mandamus with Prayer for the Issuance of a Writ of Preliminary Injunction and Temporary Restraining Order. on December 28. Petitioner prays that PEA publicly disclose the terms of any renegotiation of the JVA. Chavez ("Petitioner" for brevity) as a taxpayer. 1998. contrary to the conclusions reached by the Senate Committees. then President Fidel V. Finally.10 The Legal Task Force upheld the legality of the JVA. of the 1987 Constitution on the right of the people to information on matters of public concern. After several motions for extension of time. Zulueta filed before the Court a Petition for Prohibition with Application for the Issuance of a Temporary Restraining Order and Preliminary Injunction docketed as G. the Office of the President under the administration of then President Joseph E. 1998. The members of the Legal Task Force were the Secretary of Justice. 132994 seeking to nullify the JVA. 365 creating a Legal Task Force to conduct a study on the legality of the JVA in view of Senate Committee Report No. Ramos issued Presidential Administrative Order No. respectively. without prejudice to the refiling of the case before the proper court. In a Resolution dated March 23. Petitioner assails the sale to AMARI of lands of the public domain as a blatant violation of Section 3. 1998. 1997. PEA15 and AMARI16 are as follows: I.13 PEA and AMARI filed their Comments on October 19. PEA and AMARI signed the Amended Joint Venture Agreement ("Amended JVA. On March 30. According to these reports. 1999. 1998. Petitioner filed a Reiterative Motion for Issuance of a TRO dated May 26. Article III. PEA Director Nestor Kalaw. Estrada approved the Amended JVA.9 and the Government Corporate Counsel. On December 5.8 the Chief Presidential Legal Counsel." for brevity). the Court gave due course to the petition and required the parties to file their respective memoranda. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution prohibiting the sale of alienable lands of the public domain to private corporations. petitioner asserts that he seeks to enjoin the loss of billions of pesos in properties of the State that are of public dominion. Article II. 1998. the Philippine Daily Inquirer and Today published reports that there were on-going renegotiations between PEA and AMARI under an order issued by then President Fidel V. PEA Chairman Arsenio Yulo and retired Navy Officer Sergio Cruz composed the negotiating panel of PEA. (b) for issuance of a temporary restraining order. Petitioner contends the government stands to lose billions of pesos in the sale by PEA of the reclaimed lands to AMARI. 1999.R. Due to the approval of the Amended JVA by the Office of the President." 14 The Issues The issues raised by petitioner. Ramos. 1999. petitioner Frank I. and (c) to set the case for hearing on oral argument.

VI. cannot prevent the Court from rendering a decision if there is a grave violation of the Constitution. It now becomes more compelling for the Court to resolve the issue to insure the government itself does not violate a provision of the Constitution intended to safeguard the national patrimony. which prohibits the government from alienating lands of the public domain to private corporations. Petitioner counters that PEA and AMARI cannot avoid the constitutional issue by simply fast-tracking the signing and approval of the Amended JVA before the Court could act on the issue. V.5 hectares of reclaimed lands and submerged areas of Manila Bay to a single private corporation. Thus. Even in cases where supervening events had 122 . to annul the effects of such unconstitutional contract. Presidential approval does not resolve the constitutional issue or remove it from the ambit of judicial review. PEA and AMARI have still to implement the Amended JVA. WHETHER THE COURT IS THE PROPER FORUM FOR RAISING THE ISSUE OF WHETHER THE AMENDED JOINT VENTURE AGREEMENT IS GROSSLY DISADVANTAGEOUS TO THE GOVERNMENT. 1999 a copy of the signed Amended JVA containing the terms and conditions agreed upon in the renegotiations. 1999. Petitioner's principal basis in assailing the renegotiation of the JVA is its violation of Section 3. perfecting and/or executing any new agreement with AMARI." PEA and AMARI claim the petition is now moot and academic because AMARI furnished petitioner on June 21." The petition also prays that the Court enjoin PEA from "privately entering into. and if already implemented. the Court can still prevent the transfer of title and ownership of alienable lands of the public domain in the name of AMARI. IV. PEA has satisfied petitioner's prayer for a public disclosure of the renegotiations. The Amended JVA is not an ordinary commercial contract but one which seeks to transfer title and ownership to 367. WHETHER THE PETITION MERITS DISMISSAL FOR FAILING TO OBSERVE THE PRINCIPLE GOVERNING THE HIERARCHY OF COURTS. In the instant case. The Court's Ruling First issue: whether the principal reliefs prayed for in the petition are moot and academic because of subsequent events. it is the duty of the Court to enjoin its implementation. WHETHER THE PETITION MERITS DISMISSAL FOR NON-EXHAUSTION OF ADMINISTRATIVE REMEDIES. whether intended or accidental. AND VII. if the Amended JVA runs counter to the Constitution. Moreover. petitioner's prayer to enjoin the signing of the Amended JVA is now moot because PEA and AMARI have already signed the Amended JVA on March 30. 1999.II. The prayer to enjoin the signing of the Amended JVA on constitutional grounds necessarily includes preventing its implementation if in the meantime PEA and AMARI have signed one in violation of the Constitution. RECLAIMED AND STILL TO BE RECLAIMED. Supervening events. WHETHER THE STIPULATIONS IN THE AMENDED JOINT VENTURE AGREEMENT FOR THE TRANSFER TO AMARI OF CERTAIN LANDS. Article XII of the Constitution. Likewise. If the Amended JVA indeed violates the Constitution. WHETHER PETITIONER HAS LOCUS STANDI TO BRING THIS SUIT. We rule that the signing of the Amended JVA by PEA and AMARI and its approval by the President cannot operate to moot the petition and divest the Court of its jurisdiction. III. the Office of the President has approved the Amended JVA on May 28. The petition prays that PEA publicly disclose the "terms and conditions of the on-going negotiations for a new agreement. VIOLATE THE 1987 CONSTITUTION. WHETHER THE CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT TO INFORMATION INCLUDES OFFICIAL INFORMATION ON ON-GOING NEGOTIATIONS BEFORE A FINAL AGREEMENT.

17 Also.22 The Court can resolve this case without determining any factual issue related to the case. 1987. Certain undertakings by AMARI under the Amended JVA constitute the consideration for the purchase. The principle of hierarchy of courts applies generally to cases involving factual questions. 141. All previous decisions of the Court involving Section 3. Also. Under the Amended JVA. 1945 or earlier. therefore. 21 Second issue: whether the petition merits dismissal for failing to observe the principle governing the hierarchy of courts. no need for the petitioners in Tañada to make an initial demand from the Office of the President. Besides. and the public. AMARI seeks to acquire from PEA. 63825 to publish the presidential decrees.20 Lastly. Third issue: whether the petition merits dismissal for nonexhaustion of administrative remedies. Judicial confirmation of imperfect title requires open. In the instant case. Article VIII of the Constitution. It also violates the rule that mandamus may issue only if there is no other plain. a public corporation.18 covered agricultural lands sold to private corporations which acquired the lands from private parties. 1084 (charter of PEA) and Title III of CA No. the Court cannot entertain cases involving factual issues. In the instant case. the Court did not hesitate to resolve the legal or constitutional issues raised to formulate controlling principles to guide the bench. PEA faults petitioner for seeking judicial intervention in compelling PEA to disclose publicly certain information without first asking PEA the needed information. raises constitutional issues of transcendental importance to the public. PEA claims it has no affirmative statutory duty to disclose publicly information about its renegotiation of the JVA. Thus. reclaimed lands and submerged areas for nonagricultural purposes by purchase under PD No. We resolve to exercise primary jurisdiction over the instant case. bar. the instant petition is a case of first impression. or its counterpart provision in the 1973 Constitution. PEA asserts that the Court must apply the principle of exhaustion of administrative remedies to the instant case in view of the failure of petitioner here to demand initially from PEA the needed information. PEA points out that in Tañada. exclusive and notorious occupation of agricultural lands of the public domain for at least thirty years since June 12. The Amended JVA even allows AMARI to mortgage at any time the entire reclaimed area to raise financing for the reclamation project. PEA is obligated to transfer to AMARI the latter's seventy percent proportionate share in the reclaimed areas as the reclamation progresses. however. there is a need to resolve immediately the constitutional issue raised in this petition because of the possible transfer at any time by PEA to AMARI of title and ownership to portions of the reclaimed lands. 123 . There was. Tuvera23 where the Court granted the petition for mandamus even if the petitioners there did not initially demand from the Office of the President the publication of the presidential decrees. The instant case. PEA distinguishes the instant case from Tañada v. the deadline for filing applications for judicial confirmation of imperfect title expired on December 31. continuous. 141" for brevity). the Executive Department had an affirmative statutory duty under Article 2 of the Civil Code24 and Section 1 of Commonwealth Act No. 141 ("CA No. PEA claims petitioner's direct resort to the Court violates the principle of exhaustion of administrative remedies. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution.made the cases moot. speedy and adequate remedy in the ordinary course of law. the instant case is a petition for mandamus which falls under the original jurisdiction of the Court under Section 5. The transferors of the private corporations claimed or could claim the right to judicial confirmation of their imperfect titles19 under Title II of Commonwealth Act. PEA and AMARI claim petitioner ignored the judicial hierarchy by seeking relief directly from the Court. As it is not a trier of facts. Neither AMARI nor PEA can claim judicial confirmation of their titles because the lands covered by the Amended JVA are newly reclaimed or still to be reclaimed.

petitioner emphasizes. the mere fact that he is a citizen satisfies the requirement of personal interest. Under Section 79 of the Government Auditing Code.' and if they 'immediately affect the social. The petitioner has standing to bring this taxpayer's suit because the petition seeks to compel PEA to comply with its constitutional duties. Thus. and was even in breach of this legal duty. economic and moral well being of the people. such as in this case. compelling PEA to comply with a constitutional duty to the nation.The original JVA sought to dispose to AMARI public lands held by PEA. was the result of a negotiated contract. Considering that PEA had an affirmative statutory duty to make the public disclosure. There are two constitutional issues involved here. when the proceeding involves the assertion of a public right. information which the Constitution and statutory law mandate PEA to disclose. not of a public bidding. xxx In Tañada v. He invokes several decisions of this Court which have set aside the procedural matter of locus standi. there is no actual controversy requiring the exercise of the power of judicial review. 27 The principal issue in the instant case is the capacity of AMARI to acquire lands held by PEA in view of the constitutional ban prohibiting the alienation of lands of the public domain to private corporations.' He asserts that ordinary taxpayers have a right to initiate and prosecute actions questioning the validity of acts or orders of government agencies or instrumentalities. Tuvera. PEA failed to make this public disclosure because the original JVA. like the Amended JVA. We rule that the principle of exhaustion of administrative remedies does not apply in the instant case.26 the disposition of government lands to private parties requires public bidding. The law obligated PEA to make this public disclosure even without demand from petitioner or from anyone. In Chavez v. PEA also claims that petitioner has not shown that he will suffer any concrete injury because of the signing or implementation of the Amended JVA.28 the Court upheld the right of a citizen to bring a taxpayer's suit on matters of transcendental importance to the public. he need not show that he has 124 . Second is the application of a constitutional provision intended to insure the equitable distribution of alienable lands of the public domain among Filipino citizens. when the subject of the case involved public interest. Fourth issue: whether petitioner has locus standi to bring this suit PEA argues that petitioner has no standing to institute mandamus proceedings to enforce his constitutional right to information without a showing that PEA refused to perform an affirmative duty imposed on PEA by the Constitution. the petition raises matters of transcendental importance to the public. the principle of exhaustion of administrative remedies does not apply when the issue involved is a purely legal or constitutional question. PEA was under a positive legal duty to disclose to the public the terms and conditions for the sale of its lands. Moreover. First is the right of citizens to information on matters of public concern. the people are regarded as the real parties in interest.' Moreover. thus "Besides. petitioner had the right to seek direct judicial intervention. The thrust of the second issue is to prevent PEA from alienating hundreds of hectares of alienable lands of the public domain in violation of the Constitution. a government corporation. if the issues raised are of 'paramount public interest. The thrust of the first issue is to compel PEA to disclose publicly information on the sale of government lands worth billions of pesos. and because it is sufficient that petitioner is a citizen and as such is interested in the execution of the laws. Moreover. the matter of recovering the ill-gotten wealth of the Marcoses is an issue of 'transcendental importance to the public. the Court asserted that when the issue concerns a public right and the object of mandamus is to obtain the enforcement of a public duty. PCGG. and this alone is determinative of this issue.

Article III of the Constitution explains the people's right to information on matters of public concern in this manner: "Sec. shall be afforded the citizen. the petitioners sought to enforce their right to be informed on matters of public concern. Article II of the Constitution. the Court declared that the right they sought to be enforced 'is a public right recognized by no less than the fundamental law of the land. the instant petition is anchored on the right of the people to information and access to official records. In ruling for the petitioners' legal standing. and papers pertaining to official acts. further declared that 'when a mandamus proceeding involves the assertion of a public right. the petitioner has the requisite locus standi. in Albano v. as well as provide the people sufficient information to exercise effectively other constitutional rights.' Legaspi v.any legal or special interest in the result of the action. Similarly. These twin provisions are also essential to hold public officials "at all 125 . the disclosure provision in the Constitution would constitute sufficient authority for upholding the petitioner's standing. documents and papers — a right guaranteed under Section 7. a former solicitor general.e.' Further." (Emphasis supplied) The State policy of full transparency in all transactions involving public interest reinforces the people's right to information on matters of public concern. transactions and decisions to citizens. Subject to reasonable conditions prescribed by law. Article III of the 1987 Constitution. is a Filipino citizen. . Article IV of the 1973 Constitution. and to documents. the requirement of personal interest is satisfied by the mere fact that petitioner is a citizen and. Civil Service Commission. Fifth issue: whether the constitutional right to information includes official information on on-going negotiations before a final agreement. as well as to government research data used as basis for policy development. Section 7. If the government does not disclose its official acts." We rule that since the instant petition. i. brought by a citizen. in connection with the rule that laws in order to be valid and enforceable must be published in the Official Gazette or otherwise effectively promulgated. This State policy is expressed in Section 28. as a consequence. In the aforesaid case. therefore. or decisions.to information and to the equitable diffusion of natural resources . Petitioner. subject to such limitations as may be provided by law. Access to official records. management and operation of the Manila International Container Terminal. in the economic development of the country and the magnitude of the financial consideration involved." (Emphasis supplied) These twin provisions of the Constitution seek to promote transparency in policy-making and in the operations of the government. even if expressed without any restraint. the State adopts and implements a policy of full public disclosure of all its transactions involving public interest. while reiterating Tañada. . whatever citizens say. These twin provisions are essential to the exercise of freedom of expression. transactions. (1) the enforcement of a public right (2) espoused by a Filipino citizen. 'public interest [was] definitely involved considering the important role [of the subject contract] . 28. part of the general 'public' which possesses the right.' We concluded that. 7.matters of transcendental public importance. will be speculative and amount to nothing. involves the enforcement of constitutional rights . Reyes. The right of the people to information on matters of public concern shall be recognized. we said that while expenditure of public funds may not have been involved under the questioned contract for the development. thus: "Sec. Because of the satisfaction of the two basic requisites laid down by decisional law to sustain petitioner's legal standing. a right then recognized in Section 6. we rule that the petition at bar should be allowed.

Requiring government officials to reveal their deliberations at the pre-decisional stage will degrade the quality of decision-making in government agencies.30 – "An essential element of these freedoms is to keep open a continuing dialogue or process of communication between the government and the people. PEA must. Presiding Officer. Suarez: This contemplates inclusion of negotiations leading to the consummation of the transaction. Government officials will hesitate to express their real sentiments during deliberations if there is immediate public dissemination of their discussions. Only when the participants in the discussion are aware of the issues and have access to information relating thereto can such bear fruit. because the Government Auditing Code requires public bidding. agreements. Suarez: Thank you.times x x x accountable to the people. Ople: The 'transactions' used here. subject only to reasonable safeguards on the national interest. As explained by the Court in Valmonte v. or does he refer to the contract itself? Mr. location. they cannot hold public officials accountable for anything. Mr. the minimum price and similar information. If PEA fails to make this disclosure. AMARI cites the following discussion in the 1986 Constitutional Commission: "Mr. however. Armed with the right information. Information. Belmonte. Yet. disclose to the public matters relating to the disposition of its property." PEA maintains the right does not include access to "intra-agency or inter-agency recommendations or communications during the stage when common assertions are still in the process of being formulated or are in the 'exploratory stage'. PEA must prepare all these data and disclose them to the public at the start of the disposition process. on its own and without demand from anyone.31 that in cases of on-going negotiations the right to information is limited to "definite propositions of the government. I suppose is generic and therefore. or treaties or whatever." Also. Jr. citing Chavez v. citizens can participate in public discussions leading to the formulation of government policies and their effective implementation. it can cover both steps leading to a contract and already a consummated contract. on on-going evaluation or review of bids or proposals being undertaken by the bidding or review committee is 126 . long before the consummation of the contract. Before the consummation of the contract. PCGG. does the Gentleman refer to the steps leading to the consummation of the contract. Mr." PEA asserts. technical description and nature of the property being disposed of. putting them under all kinds of pressure before they decide. the terms and conditions of the disposition. this open dialogue can be effective only to the extent that the citizenry is informed and thus able to formulate its will intelligently. We must first distinguish between information the law on public bidding requires PEA to disclose publicly. Suarez. And when we say 'transactions' which should be distinguished from contracts. To support its contention. and information the constitutional right to information requires PEA to release to the public. Mr. the parties qualified to bid. any citizen can demand from PEA this information at any time during the bidding process."32 (Emphasis supplied) AMARI argues there must first be a consummated contract before petitioner can invoke the right. An informed citizenry is essential to the existence and proper functioning of any democracy. These include the size. AMARI contends that petitioner cannot invoke the right at the pre-decisional stage or before the closing of the transaction. It is in the interest of the State that the channels for free political discussion be maintained to the end that the government may perceive and be responsive to the people's will. Mr."29 for unless citizens have the proper information. Ople: Yes.

however. confirming. as well as other government representatives.not immediately accessible under the right to information. or decisions" on the bids or proposals. not necessarily to intra-agency or inter-agency recommendations or communications during the stage when common assertions are still in the process of being formulated or are in the "exploratory" stage. transactions or decisions of government agencies or officials. does not extend to matters recognized as privileged information under the separation of powers. to observe the same restrictions on disclosure of information in general. terms of reference and other documents attached to such reports or minutes. and if one is consummated. evidencing. collated or processed. the right to information does not compel PEA to prepare lists. The first category refers to any document that is part of the public records in the custody of government agencies or officials. establishing. intelligence and other classified information. (2) documents and papers pertaining to official acts. whether raw. legal and expert opinions. the commissioners of the 1986 Constitutional Commission understood that the right to information "contemplates inclusion of negotiations leading to the consummation of the transaction. While the evaluation or review is still on-going.33 the Court ruled as follows: "Considering the intent of the framers of the Constitution. Otherwise. the public's right to information attaches. From this moment. documents and papers. However. of course. supporting."Certainly. Such a requirement will prevent the citizenry from participating in the public discussion of any proposed contract. a consummated contract is not a requirement for the exercise of the right to information. must pertain to definite propositions of the government. like rules specifying when and how to conduct the inspection and copying. which means the opportunity to inspect and copy them. However.35 Requiring a consummated contract will keep the public in the dark until the contract. The exercise of the right is also subject to reasonable regulations to protect the integrity of the public records and to minimize disruption to government operations. PCGG. becomes a fait accompli. and any citizen can access all the non-proprietary information leading to such definite proposition. it may be too late for the public to expose its defects. effectively truncating a basic right enshrined in the Bill of Rights. there are no "official acts. summaries and the like relating to the renegotiation of the JVA. we believe that it is incumbent upon the PCGG and its officers. In Chavez v." (Emphasis supplied) intended. minutes of meetings. information affecting national security." namely: (1) official records. The second category refers to documents and papers recording. This negates the State policy of full transparency on matters of public concern. to disclose sufficient public information on any proposed settlement they have decided to take up with the ostensible owners and holders of ill-gotten wealth. the people can never exercise the right if no contract is consummated. transactions. justifying or explaining official acts. and information on investigations of crimes by law enforcement agencies 127 . though. There is need. owned by the government and used in formulating government policies. recommendations. a situation which the framers of the Constitution could not have The right to information. there arises a "definite proposition" on the part of the government.1âwphi1. abstracts.36 The right does not also apply to information on military and diplomatic secrets." The right covers three categories of information which are "matters of public concern. We can allow neither an emasculation of a constitutional right. Such information.nêt The information that petitioner may access on the renegotiation of the JVA includes evaluation reports. transactions and decisions.34 The right only affords access to records. and (3) government research data used in formulating policies. Contrary to AMARI's contention. One who exercises the right must copy the records. all relating to the JVA. as discussed earlier – such as on matters involving national security. documents and papers at his expense. diplomatic or foreign relations. once the committee makes its official recommendation. nor a retreat by the State of its avowed "policy of full disclosure of all its transactions involving public interest. The third category refers to research data. which may be grossly disadvantageous to the government or even illegal.

41 Sixth issue: whether stipulations in the Amended JVA for the transfer to AMARI of lands. the shores. The Regalian doctrine is the foundation of the time-honored principle of land ownership that "all lands that were not acquired from the Government. Later. on November 29. CA No. which is now Article 420 of the Civil Code of 1950. however. however. 1654 which provided for the lease.40 Congress has also prescribed other limitations on the right to information in several legislations. 42 The King. the Philippine Legislature approved Act No. bays. the State. 1936. like internal deliberations of the Supreme Court and other collegiate courts. the National Assembly passed Commonwealth Act No. or executive sessions of either house of Congress. Legislative and Judicial power. 2874."43 Article 339 of the Civil Code of 1889. Ownership and Disposition of Reclaimed Lands The Spanish Law of Waters of 1866 was the first statutory law governing the ownership and disposition of reclaimed lands in the Philippines. either by purchase or by grant. reclaimed or to be reclaimed. The information does not cover Presidential conversations. There is no claim by PEA that the information demanded by petitioner is privileged information rooted in the separation of powers.44 The Spanish Law of Waters of 1866 allowed the reclamation of the sea under Article 5. 1973 and 1987 Constitutions adopted the Regalian doctrine substituting. which authorized the lease. that the constitutional right to information includes official information on on-going negotiationsbefore a final contract. The Spanish Law of Waters of 1866 and the Civil Code of 1889 The Regalian Doctrine The ownership of lands reclaimed from foreshore and submerged areas is rooted in the Regalian doctrine which holds that the State owns all lands and waters of the public domain. Under the Spanish Law of Waters of 1866. On November 7. We rule. correspondences. in lieu of the King. as the owner of all lands and waters of the public domain.39 This is not the situation in the instant case. which courts have long recognized as confidential. must constitute definite propositions by the government and should not cover recognized exceptions like privileged information. therefore. inlets and all waters within the maritime zone of the Spanish territory belonged to the public domain for public use. also known as the Public Land Act. incorporated the Regalian doctrine. but not the sale. whichauthorized the lease. military and diplomatic secrets and similar matters affecting national security and public order. Upon the Spanish conquest of the Philippines. or discussions during closed-door Cabinet meetings which. 1919. ownership of all "lands. of reclaimed lands of the government to corporations and individuals. acquired and owned all lands and territories in the Philippines except those he disposed of by grant or sale to private individuals. coves. A frank exchange of exploratory ideas and assessments. as the sovereign ruler and representative of the people. of reclaimed lands of the government to corporations and individuals. the Philippine Commission enacted Act No. The information. free from the glare of publicity and pressure by interested parties. 1907. territories and possessions" in the Philippines passed to the Spanish Crown. belong to the public domain. is essential to protect the independence of decision-making of those tasked to exercise Presidential. The 1935. On May 18. violate the Constitution. the Public Land Act. 141. but not the sale. but not the sale. This kind of information cannot be pried open by a co-equal branch of government.before the prosecution of the accused. 141 continues to this day as the general law governing the classification and disposition of lands of the public domain. of reclaimed lands of the government to corporations and individuals. which provided as follows: 128 .38 are recognized as confidential.37 The right may also be subject to other limitations that Congress may impose by law.

The salient provisions of this law were as follows: "Section 1. such as walls. ports and bridges constructed by the State. 339. Article 341 of the Civil Code of 1889 governed the re-classification of property of public dominion into private property. to wit: "Art. 2. and other works for the defense of the territory. canals. or by the provinces. Property of public dominion. That belonging exclusively to the State which. rivers. torrents. or the executive department pursuant to law."Article 5. however. with proper permission. such as roads. shall become the property of the party constructing such works. or in the development of the national wealth. roadsteads. the Philippine Commission enacted Act No. but also to property not so used but employed to develop the national wealth. This class of property constituted property of public dominion although employed for some economic or commercial activity to increase the national wealth. riverbanks. and shall cause plats and plans of such surveys to be prepared and filed with the Bureau of Lands. The legislature. Lands reclaimed from the sea in consequence of works constructed by the State. until granted to private individuals. 1654 of the Philippine Commission On May 8. (a) The Secretary of the Interior shall cause all Government or public lands made or reclaimed by the Government by dredging or filling or otherwise to be divided into lots or blocks. In contrast. (b) Upon completion of such plats and plans the GovernorGeneral shall give notice to the public that such parts of the lands so made or reclaimed as are not needed for public purposes will be leased for commercial and business purposes. without being of general public use." This provision. Article 339 of the Civil Code of 1889 defined property of public dominion as follows: "Art. when no longer devoted to public use or to the defense of the territory. provided the government issued the necessary permit and did not reserve ownership of the reclaimed land to the State. must declare the property no longer needed for public use or territorial defense before the government could lease or alienate the property to private parties. and the title to all Government or public lands made or reclaimed by the Government by dredging or filling or otherwise throughout the Philippine Islands. land reclaimed from the sea belonged to the party undertaking the reclamation." Property devoted to public use referred to property open for use by the public. shores. property devoted to public service referred to property used for some specific public service and open only to those authorized to use the property. The control and disposition of the foreshore as defined in existing law. 129 . and that of a similar character. x x x. unless otherwise provided by the terms of the grant of authority. pueblos or private persons. was not self-executing." Under the Spanish Law of Waters. Property of public dominion referred not only to property devoted to public use. 45 Act No. shall be retained by the Government without prejudice to vested rights and without prejudice to rights conceded to the City of Manila in the Luneta Extension. is employed in some public service. 1654 which regulated the lease of reclaimed and foreshore lands. 341. with the necessary streets and alleyways located thereon. and mines. 1907. fortresses. Property of public dominion is – 1. shall become a part of the private property of the State. That devoted to public use. Section 2.

upon the recommendation of the Secretary of Agriculture and Natural Resources. shall from time to time classify the lands of the public domain into – (a) Alienable or disposable. Sec. The Governor-General. and Sec. 1654 did not prohibit private parties from reclaiming parts of the sea under Section 5 of the Spanish Law of Waters. Any tract of land of the public domain which. 6. and not otherwise." Act No. industrial. 130 . 2874. being neither timber nor mineral land. or other means. x x x. Act No. shall from time to time declare what lands are open to disposition or concession under this Act. Act No. (d) Lands not included in any of the foregoing classes. 1654 mandated that the government should retain title to all lands reclaimed by the government. the Public Land Act. Act No. however. (e) The leases above provided for shall be disposed of to the highest and best bidder therefore. 56. Act No. subject to such regulations and safeguards as the Governor-General may by executive order prescribe.xxx (c) Mineral lands. on reclaimed lands. 1654 made government reclaimed lands sui generis in that unlike other public lands which the government could sell to private parties. the Philippine Legislature enacted Act No. The Act also vested in the government control and disposition of foreshore lands. (b) Foreshore. Private parties could lease lands reclaimed by the government only if these lands were no longer needed for public purpose. 1654 mandatedpublic bidding in the lease of government reclaimed lands. 2874 of the Philippine Legislature On November 29. and shall be open to disposition or concession. shall be disposed of under the provisions of this chapter. For the purposes of the government and disposition of alienable or disposable public lands. shall be classified as suitable for residential purposes or for commercial. upon recommendation by the Secretary of Agriculture and Natural Resources. were as follows: "Sec. these reclaimed lands were available only for lease to private parties." (Emphasis supplied) Sec. 55. (c) Marshy lands or lands covered with water bordering upon the shores or banks of navigable lakes or rivers. 2874. Lands reclaimed from the sea by private parties with government permission remained private lands. Act No. xxx Sec. 1654. did not repeal Section 5 of the Spanish Law of Waters of 1866. 1919. Only those lands shall be declared open to disposition or concession which have been officially delimited or classified x x x. 8. The lands disposable under this title shall be classified as follows: (a) Lands reclaimed by the Government by dredging.46 The salient provisions of Act No. filling. (b) Timber. or other productive purposes other than agricultural purposes. the GovernorGeneral. 7.

must formally declare that the lands were "not necessary for the public service. 2874 reiterated the State policy to lease and not to sell government reclaimed. 2874. and other mineral oils. foreshore and marshy lands. and mineral lands of the public domain. The lands comprised in classes (a). the 1935 Constitution took effect upon its ratification by the Filipino people. These provisions also empowered the Governor-General to classify further such disposable lands of the public domain into government reclaimed. foreshore and marshy lands of the public domain." (Emphasis supplied) Section 6 of Act No. must be suitable for residential. commercial. under Act No. Dispositions under the 1935 Constitution On May 14. The lands included in class (d) may be disposed of by sale or lease under the provisions of this Act. 2874 did not authorize the reclassification of government reclaimed. foreshore and marshy lands into other non-agricultural lands under Section 56 (d). 1935. Government reclaimed. Section 7 of the Act empowered the GovernorGeneral to "declare what lands are open to disposition or concession. and their disposition. development. that – "Section 1. 58. 1654. as the only alienable or disposable lands of the public domain that the government could not sell to private parties. 2874 stated that lands "disposable under this title48 shall be classified" as government reclaimed. minerals. as well as other lands. 2874 categorically mandated that disposable lands of the public domain classified as government reclaimed. foreshore or marshy lands of the public domain. waters. Lands reclaimed from the sea by private parties with government permission remained private lands. unless the legislature passed a law allowing their sale. These provisions vested upon the Governor-General the power to classify inalienable lands of the public domain into disposable lands of the public domain. declared in Section 1. exploitation. Sec. the government could not sell government reclaimed. upon recommendation by the Secretary of Agriculture and Natural Resources. (b). all forces of potential energy and other natural resources of the Philippines belong to the State. and only allowed the lease. however. foreshore and marshy lands to private parties. Act No. This is the reason the government prohibited the sale. Government reclaimed. in adopting the Regalian doctrine. timber. petroleum. shall declare that the same are not necessary for the public service and are open to disposition under this chapter. of these lands to private parties. Lands falling under Section 56 (d) were the only lands for non-agricultural purposes the government could sell to private parties.x x x." Section 8 of the Act limited alienable or disposable lands only to those lands which have been "officially delimited and classified. a policy first enunciated in 1907 in Act No. All agricultural. Thus. foreshore and marshy lands "shall be disposed of to private parties by lease only and not otherwise. Article XIII. and (c) of section fifty-six shall be disposed of to private parties by lease only and not otherwise. foreshore and marshy lands remained sui generis. 2874 did not prohibit private parties from reclaiming parts of the sea pursuant to Section 5 of the Spanish Law of Waters of 1866. coal." The Governor-General. as well as other non-agricultural lands. before allowing the lease of these lands to private parties." Act No. as soon as the Governor-General. The 1935 Constitution.49 Act No. or utilization shall be 131 ." Section 56 of Act No. All these lands. The rationale behind this State policy is obvious. industrial or other productive non-agricultural purposes. foreshore and marshy public lands for non-agricultural purposes retain their inherent potential as areas for public service. Section 58 of Act No. The State always reserved these lands for some future public service. 2874 authorized the Governor-General to "classify lands of the public domain into x x x alienable or disposable"47 lands.

limited to citizens of the Philippines or to corporations or
associations at least sixty per centum of the capital of which
is owned by such citizens, subject to any existing right, grant,
lease, or concession at the time of the inauguration of the
Government established under this Constitution. Natural
resources, with the exception of public agricultural land,
shall not be alienated, and no license, concession, or lease
for the exploitation, development, or utilization of any of the
natural resources shall be granted for a period exceeding
twenty-five years, renewable for another twenty-five years,
except as to water rights for irrigation, water supply,
fisheries, or industrial uses other than the development of
water power, in which cases beneficial use may be the
measure and limit of the grant." (Emphasis supplied)
The 1935 Constitution barred the alienation of all natural resources
except public agricultural lands, which were the only natural
resources the State could alienate. Thus, foreshore lands,
considered part of the State's natural resources, became inalienable
by constitutional fiat, available only for lease for 25 years, renewable
for another 25 years. The government could alienate foreshore lands
only after these lands were reclaimed and classified as alienable
agricultural lands of the public domain. Government reclaimed and
marshy lands of the public domain, being neither timber nor mineral
lands, fell under the classification of public agricultural
lands.50 However, government reclaimed and marshy lands, although
subject to classification as disposable public agricultural lands, could
only be leased and not sold to private parties because of Act No.
2874.
The prohibition on private parties from acquiring ownership of
government reclaimed and marshy lands of the public domain was
only a statutory prohibition and the legislature could therefore
remove such prohibition. The 1935 Constitution did not prohibit
individuals and corporations from acquiring government reclaimed
and marshy lands of the public domain that were classified as
agricultural lands under existing public land laws. Section 2, Article
XIII of the 1935 Constitution provided as follows:

"Section 2. No private corporation or association may
acquire, lease, or hold public agricultural lands in
excess of one thousand and twenty four hectares, nor
may any individual acquire such lands by purchase in
excess of one hundred and forty hectares, or by lease in
excess of one thousand and twenty-four hectares, or by
homestead in excess of twenty-four hectares. Lands adapted
to grazing, not exceeding two thousand hectares, may be
leased to an individual, private corporation, or association."
(Emphasis supplied)
Still, after the effectivity of the 1935 Constitution, the legislature did
not repeal Section 58 of Act No. 2874 to open for sale to private
parties government reclaimed and marshy lands of the public
domain. On the contrary, the legislature continued the long
established State policy of retaining for the government title and
ownership of government reclaimed and marshy lands of the public
domain.
Commonwealth Act No. 141 of the Philippine National Assembly
On November 7, 1936, the National Assembly approved
Commonwealth Act No. 141, also known as the Public Land Act,
which compiled the then existing laws on lands of the public domain.
CA No. 141, as amended, remains to this day the existing general
law governing the classification and disposition of lands of the public
domain other than timber and mineral lands.51
Section 6 of CA No. 141 empowers the President to classify lands of
the public domain into "alienable or disposable" 52 lands of the public
domain, which prior to such classification are inalienable and outside
the commerce of man. Section 7 of CA No. 141 authorizes the
President to "declare what lands are open to disposition or
concession." Section 8 of CA No. 141 states that the government can
declare open for disposition or concession only lands that are
"officially delimited and classified." Sections 6, 7 and 8 of CA No. 141
read as follows:

132

"Sec. 6. The President, upon the recommendation of the
Secretary of Agriculture and Commerce, shall from time
to time classify the lands of the public domain into –
(a) Alienable or disposable,
(b) Timber, and
(c) Mineral lands,
and may at any time and in like manner transfer such lands
from one class to another,53 for the purpose of their
administration and disposition.
Sec. 7. For the purposes of the administration and
disposition of alienable or disposable public lands, the
President, upon recommendation by the Secretary of
Agriculture and Commerce, shall from time to time
declare what lands are open to disposition or
concession under this Act.
Sec. 8. Only those lands shall be declared open to
disposition or concession which have been officially
delimited and classified and, when practicable,
surveyed, and which have not been reserved for public
or quasi-public uses, nor appropriated by the Government,
nor in any manner become private property, nor those on
which a private right authorized and recognized by this Act or
any other valid law may be claimed, or which, having been
reserved or appropriated, have ceased to be so. x x x."
Thus, before the government could alienate or dispose of lands of
the public domain, the President must first officially classify these
lands as alienable or disposable, and then declare them open to
disposition or concession. There must be no law reserving these
lands for public or quasi-public uses.

The salient provisions of CA No. 141, on government reclaimed,
foreshore and marshy lands of the public domain, are as follows:
"Sec. 58. Any tract of land of the public domain which,
being neither timber nor mineral land, is intended to be
used for residential purposes or for commercial,
industrial, or other productive purposes other than
agricultural, and is open to disposition or concession,
shall be disposed of under the provisions of this
chapter and not otherwise.
Sec. 59. The lands disposable under this title shall be
classified as follows:
(a) Lands reclaimed by the Government by
dredging, filling, or other means;
(b) Foreshore;
(c) Marshy lands or lands covered with water
bordering upon the shores or banks of navigable
lakes or rivers;
(d) Lands not included in any of the foregoing
classes.
Sec. 60. Any tract of land comprised under this title may be
leased or sold, as the case may be, to any person,
corporation, or association authorized to purchase or lease
public lands for agricultural purposes. x x x.
Sec. 61. The lands comprised in classes (a), (b), and (c)
of section fifty-nine shall be disposed of to private
parties by lease only and not otherwise, as soon as the
President, upon recommendation by the Secretary of
Agriculture, shall declare that the same are not necessary
for the public service and are open to disposition under this
chapter. The lands included in class (d) may be disposed

133

of by sale or lease under the provisions of this Act."
(Emphasis supplied)
Section 61 of CA No. 141 readopted, after the effectivity of the 1935
Constitution, Section 58 of Act No. 2874 prohibiting the sale of
government reclaimed, foreshore and marshy disposable lands of
the public domain. All these lands are intended for residential,
commercial, industrial or other non-agricultural purposes. As before,
Section 61 allowed only the lease of such lands to private parties.
The government could sell to private parties only lands falling under
Section 59 (d) of CA No. 141, or those lands for non-agricultural
purposes not classified as government reclaimed, foreshore and
marshy disposable lands of the public domain. Foreshore lands,
however, became inalienable under the 1935 Constitution which only
allowed the lease of these lands to qualified private parties.
Section 58 of CA No. 141 expressly states that disposable lands of
the public domain intended for residential, commercial, industrial or
other productive purposes other than agricultural "shall be disposed
of under the provisions of this chapter and not otherwise."
Under Section 10 of CA No. 141, the term "disposition" includes
lease of the land. Any disposition of government reclaimed, foreshore
and marshy disposable lands for non-agricultural purposes must
comply with Chapter IX, Title III of CA No. 141,54 unless a
subsequent law amended or repealed these provisions.
In his concurring opinion in the landmark case of Republic Real
Estate Corporation v. Court of Appeals,55Justice Reynato S. Puno
summarized succinctly the law on this matter, as follows:
"Foreshore lands are lands of public dominion intended for
public use. So too are lands reclaimed by the government by
dredging, filling, or other means. Act 1654 mandated that the
control and disposition of the foreshore and lands under
water remained in the national government. Said law allowed
only the 'leasing' of reclaimed land. The Public Land Acts of
1919 and 1936 also declared that the foreshore and lands
reclaimed by the government were to be "disposed of to
private parties by lease only and not otherwise." Before

leasing, however, the Governor-General, upon
recommendation of the Secretary of Agriculture and Natural
Resources, had first to determine that the land reclaimed
was not necessary for the public service. This requisite must
have been met before the land could be disposed of. But
even then, the foreshore and lands under water were not
to be alienated and sold to private parties. The
disposition of the reclaimed land was only by lease. The
land remained property of the State." (Emphasis supplied)
As observed by Justice Puno in his concurring opinion,
"Commonwealth Act No. 141 has remained in effect at present."
The State policy prohibiting the sale to private parties of government
reclaimed, foreshore and marshy alienable lands of the public
domain, first implemented in 1907 was thus reaffirmed in CA No. 141
after the 1935 Constitution took effect. The prohibition on the sale of
foreshore lands, however, became a constitutional edict under the
1935 Constitution. Foreshore lands became inalienable as natural
resources of the State, unless reclaimed by the government and
classified as agricultural lands of the public domain, in which case
they would fall under the classification of government reclaimed
lands.
After the effectivity of the 1935 Constitution, government reclaimed
and marshy disposable lands of the public domain continued to be
only leased and not sold to private parties.56 These lands
remained sui generis, as the only alienable or disposable lands of
the public domain the government could not sell to private parties.
Since then and until now, the only way the government can sell to
private parties government reclaimed and marshy disposable lands
of the public domain is for the legislature to pass a law authorizing
such sale. CA No. 141 does not authorize the President to reclassify
government reclaimed and marshy lands into other non-agricultural
lands under Section 59 (d). Lands classified under Section 59 (d) are
the only alienable or disposable lands for non-agricultural purposes
that the government could sell to private parties.

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Moreover, Section 60 of CA No. 141 expressly requires
congressional authority before lands under Section 59 that the
government previously transferred to government units or entities
could be sold to private parties. Section 60 of CA No. 141 declares
that –
"Sec. 60. x x x The area so leased or sold shall be such as
shall, in the judgment of the Secretary of Agriculture and
Natural Resources, be reasonably necessary for the
purposes for which such sale or lease is requested, and shall
not exceed one hundred and forty-four hectares: Provided,
however, That this limitation shall not apply to grants,
donations, or transfers made to a province, municipality or
branch or subdivision of the Government for the purposes
deemed by said entities conducive to the public interest; but
the land so granted, donated, or transferred to a
province, municipality or branch or subdivision of the
Government shall not be alienated, encumbered, or
otherwise disposed of in a manner affecting its title,
except when authorized by Congress: x x x." (Emphasis
supplied)
The congressional authority required in Section 60 of CA No. 141
mirrors the legislative authority required in Section 56 of Act No.
2874.
One reason for the congressional authority is that Section 60 of CA
No. 141 exempted government units and entities from the maximum
area of public lands that could be acquired from the State. These
government units and entities should not just turn around and sell
these lands to private parties in violation of constitutional or statutory
limitations. Otherwise, the transfer of lands for non-agricultural
purposes to government units and entities could be used to
circumvent constitutional limitations on ownership of alienable or
disposable lands of the public domain. In the same manner, such
transfers could also be used to evade the statutory prohibition in CA
No. 141 on the sale of government reclaimed and marshy lands of
the public domain to private parties. Section 60 of CA No. 141
constitutes by operation of law a lien on these lands. 57

In case of sale or lease of disposable lands of the public domain
falling under Section 59 of CA No. 141, Sections 63 and 67 require a
public bidding. Sections 63 and 67 of CA No. 141 provide as follows:
"Sec. 63. Whenever it is decided that lands covered by this
chapter are not needed for public purposes, the Director of
Lands shall ask the Secretary of Agriculture and Commerce
(now the Secretary of Natural Resources) for authority to
dispose of the same. Upon receipt of such authority, the
Director of Lands shall give notice by public advertisement in
the same manner as in the case of leases or sales of
agricultural public land, x x x.
Sec. 67. The lease or sale shall be made by oral bidding;
and adjudication shall be made to the highest bidder. x x
x." (Emphasis supplied)
Thus, CA No. 141 mandates the Government to put to public auction
all leases or sales of alienable or disposable lands of the public
domain.58
Like Act No. 1654 and Act No. 2874 before it, CA No. 141 did not
repeal Section 5 of the Spanish Law of Waters of 1866. Private
parties could still reclaim portions of the sea with government
permission. However, the reclaimed land could become private
land only if classified as alienable agricultural land of the public
domain open to disposition under CA No. 141. The 1935
Constitution prohibited the alienation of all natural resources except
public agricultural lands.
The Civil Code of 1950
The Civil Code of 1950 readopted substantially the definition of
property of public dominion found in the Civil Code of 1889. Articles
420 and 422 of the Civil Code of 1950 state that –
"Art. 420. The following things are property of public
dominion:

135

(1) Those intended for public use, such as roads, canals,
rivers, torrents, ports and bridges constructed by the State,
banks, shores, roadsteads, and others of similar character;
(2) Those which belong to the State, without being for public
use, and are intended for some public service or for the
development of the national wealth.
x x x.
Art. 422. Property of public dominion, when no longer
intended for public use or for public service, shall form part of
the patrimonial property of the State."
Again, the government must formally declare that the property of
public dominion is no longer needed for public use or public service,
before the same could be classified as patrimonial property of the
State.59 In the case of government reclaimed and marshy lands of
the public domain, the declaration of their being disposable, as well
as the manner of their disposition, is governed by the applicable
provisions of CA No. 141.
Like the Civil Code of 1889, the Civil Code of 1950 included as
property of public dominion those properties of the State which,
without being for public use, are intended for public service or the
"development of the national wealth." Thus, government reclaimed
and marshy lands of the State, even if not employed for public use or
public service, if developed to enhance the national wealth, are
classified as property of public dominion.
Dispositions under the 1973 Constitution
The 1973 Constitution, which took effect on January 17, 1973,
likewise adopted the Regalian doctrine. Section 8, Article XIV of the
1973 Constitution stated that –
"Sec. 8. All lands of the public domain, waters, minerals,
coal, petroleum and other mineral oils, all forces of potential

energy, fisheries, wildlife, and other natural resources of the
Philippines belong to the State. With the exception of
agricultural, industrial or commercial, residential, and
resettlement lands of the public domain, natural
resources shall not be alienated, and no license,
concession, or lease for the exploration, development,
exploitation, or utilization of any of the natural resources
shall be granted for a period exceeding twenty-five years,
renewable for not more than twenty-five years, except as to
water rights for irrigation, water supply, fisheries, or industrial
uses other than the development of water power, in which
cases, beneficial use may be the measure and the limit of
the grant." (Emphasis supplied)
The 1973 Constitution prohibited the alienation of all natural
resources with the exception of "agricultural, industrial or
commercial, residential, and resettlement lands of the public
domain." In contrast, the 1935 Constitution barred the alienation of
all natural resources except "public agricultural lands." However, the
term "public agricultural lands" in the 1935 Constitution
encompassed industrial, commercial, residential and resettlement
lands of the public domain.60 If the land of public domain were neither
timber nor mineral land, it would fall under the classification of
agricultural land of the public domain. Both the 1935 and 1973
Constitutions, therefore, prohibited the alienation of all natural
resources except agricultural lands of the public domain.
The 1973 Constitution, however, limited the alienation of lands of the
public domain to individuals who were citizens of the Philippines.
Private corporations, even if wholly owned by Philippine citizens,
were no longer allowed to acquire alienable lands of the public
domain unlike in the 1935 Constitution. Section 11, Article XIV of the
1973 Constitution declared that –
"Sec. 11. The Batasang Pambansa, taking into account
conservation, ecological, and development requirements of
the natural resources, shall determine by law the size of land
of the public domain which may be developed, held or
acquired by, or leased to, any qualified individual,
corporation, or association, and the conditions therefor. No

136

private corporation or association may hold alienable
lands of the public domain except by lease not to exceed
one thousand hectares in area nor may any citizen hold such
lands by lease in excess of five hundred hectares or acquire
by purchase, homestead or grant, in excess of twenty-four
hectares. No private corporation or association may hold by
lease, concession, license or permit, timber or forest lands
and other timber or forest resources in excess of one
hundred thousand hectares. However, such area may be
increased by the Batasang Pambansa upon
recommendation of the National Economic and Development
Authority." (Emphasis supplied)
Thus, under the 1973 Constitution, private corporations could hold
alienable lands of the public domain only through lease. Only
individuals could now acquire alienable lands of the public domain,
and private corporations became absolutely barred from
acquiring any kind of alienable land of the public domain. The
constitutional ban extended to all kinds of alienable lands of the
public domain, while the statutory ban under CA No. 141 applied only
to government reclaimed, foreshore and marshy alienable lands of
the public domain.
PD No. 1084 Creating the Public Estates Authority
On February 4, 1977, then President Ferdinand Marcos issued
Presidential Decree No. 1084 creating PEA, a wholly government
owned and controlled corporation with a special charter. Sections 4
and 8 of PD No. 1084, vests PEA with the following purposes and
powers:
"Sec. 4. Purpose. The Authority is hereby created for the
following purposes:
(a) To reclaim land, including foreshore and submerged
areas, by dredging, filling or other means, or to acquire
reclaimed land;

(b) To develop, improve, acquire, administer, deal in,
subdivide, dispose, lease and sell any and all kinds of
lands, buildings, estates and other forms of real property,
owned, managed, controlled and/or operated by the
government;
(c) To provide for, operate or administer such service as may
be necessary for the efficient, economical and beneficial
utilization of the above properties.
Sec. 5. Powers and functions of the Authority. The Authority
shall, in carrying out the purposes for which it is created,
have the following powers and functions:
(a)To prescribe its by-laws.
xxx
(i) To hold lands of the public domain in excess of the
area permitted to private corporations by statute.
(j) To reclaim lands and to construct work across, or
otherwise, any stream, watercourse, canal, ditch, flume x x x.
xxx
(o) To perform such acts and exercise such functions as may
be necessary for the attainment of the purposes and
objectives herein specified." (Emphasis supplied)
PD No. 1084 authorizes PEA to reclaim both foreshore and
submerged areas of the public domain. Foreshore areas are those
covered and uncovered by the ebb and flow of the tide. 61 Submerged
areas are those permanently under water regardless of the ebb and
flow of the tide.62 Foreshore and submerged areas indisputably
belong to the public domain63 and are inalienable unless reclaimed,
classified as alienable lands open to disposition, and further declared
no longer needed for public service.

137

The ban in the 1973 Constitution on private corporations from
acquiring alienable lands of the public domain did not apply to PEA
since it was then, and until today, a fully owned government
corporation. The constitutional ban applied then, as it still applies
now, only to "private corporations and associations." PD No. 1084
expressly empowers PEA "to hold lands of the public domain"
even "in excess of the area permitted to private corporations by
statute." Thus, PEA can hold title to private lands, as well as title
to lands of the public domain.
In order for PEA to sell its reclaimed foreshore and submerged
alienable lands of the public domain, there must be legislative
authority empowering PEA to sell these lands. This legislative
authority is necessary in view of Section 60 of CA No.141, which
states –
"Sec. 60. x x x; but the land so granted, donated or
transferred to a province, municipality, or branch or
subdivision of the Government shall not be alienated,
encumbered or otherwise disposed of in a manner affecting
its title, except when authorized by Congress; x x x."
(Emphasis supplied)
Without such legislative authority, PEA could not sell but only lease
its reclaimed foreshore and submerged alienable lands of the public
domain. Nevertheless, any legislative authority granted to PEA to sell
its reclaimed alienable lands of the public domain would be subject to
the constitutional ban on private corporations from acquiring
alienable lands of the public domain. Hence, such legislative
authority could only benefit private individuals.
Dispositions under the 1987 Constitution
The 1987 Constitution, like the 1935 and 1973 Constitutions before
it, has adopted the Regalian doctrine. The 1987 Constitution
declares that all natural resources are "owned by the State," and
except for alienable agricultural lands of the public domain, natural
resources cannot be alienated. Sections 2 and 3, Article XII of the
1987 Constitution state that –

"Section 2. All lands of the public domain, waters, minerals,
coal, petroleum and other mineral oils, all forces of potential
energy, fisheries, forests or timber, wildlife, flora and fauna,
and other natural resources are owned by the State. With
the exception of agricultural lands, all other natural
resources shall not be alienated. The exploration,
development, and utilization of natural resources shall be
under the full control and supervision of the State. x x x.
Section 3. Lands of the public domain are classified into
agricultural, forest or timber, mineral lands, and national
parks. Agricultural lands of the public domain may be further
classified by law according to the uses which they may be
devoted. Alienable lands of the public domain shall be
limited to agricultural lands. Private corporations or
associations may not hold such alienable lands of the
public domain except by lease, for a period not
exceeding twenty-five years, renewable for not more
than twenty-five years, and not to exceed one thousand
hectares in area. Citizens of the Philippines may lease not
more than five hundred hectares, or acquire not more than
twelve hectares thereof by purchase, homestead, or grant.
Taking into account the requirements of conservation,
ecology, and development, and subject to the requirements
of agrarian reform, the Congress shall determine, by law, the
size of lands of the public domain which may be acquired,
developed, held, or leased and the conditions therefor."
(Emphasis supplied)
The 1987 Constitution continues the State policy in the 1973
Constitution banning private corporations fromacquiring any kind of
alienable land of the public domain. Like the 1973 Constitution,
the 1987 Constitution allows private corporations to hold alienable
lands of the public domain only through lease. As in the 1935 and
1973 Constitutions, the general law governing the lease to private
corporations of reclaimed, foreshore and marshy alienable lands of
the public domain is still CA No. 141.

138

Cusi. who could acquire not more than 24 hectares of alienable lands of the public domain under the 1973 Constitution. The Constitution could have followed the limitations on individuals. In some of the cases decided in 1982 and 1983. thus: "FR. it prohibits private corporations from acquiring alienable public lands. this provision did not exist under the 1935 Constitution. BERNAS: In existing decisions involving the Iglesia ni Cristo. Vice-President." (Emphasis supplied) In Ayog v. In effect.64 the Court explained the rationale behind this constitutional ban in this way: "Indeed. During the deliberations of the 1986 Constitutional Commission. the constitutional ban strengthens the constitutional limitation on individuals from acquiring more than the allowed area of alienable lands of the public domain.' If we recall. his heirs would inherit shares in the corporation instead of subdivided parcels of the farmland. Without the constitutional ban. my questions have reference to page 3. and not more than 12 hectares under the 1987 Constitution. there were instances where the Iglesia ni Cristo was not allowed to acquire a mere 313-square meter land where a chapel stood because the Supreme Court said it would be in violation of this. Is that the intent of this provision? MR. except through lease. In actual practice. individuals who already acquired the maximum area of alienable lands of the public domain could easily set up corporations to acquire more alienable public lands. If the constitutional intent is to encourage economic family-size farms. but this was introduced in the 1973 Constitution. not to exceed one thousand hectares in area. If the farmland is registered in the name of a corporation. is to transfer ownership of only a limited area of alienable land of the public domain to a qualified individual. The corporation is a convenient vehicle to circumvent the constitutional limitation on acquisition by individuals of alienable lands of the public domain. An individual could even hide his ownership of a corporation by putting his nominees as stockholders of the corporation. This would prevent the continuing break-up of farmlands into smaller and smaller plots from one generation to the next." However. FR. it was indicated that the purpose of this is to prevent large landholdings. BERNAS: Mr. if the constitutional intent is to prevent huge landholdings. under the 1973 and 1987 Constitutions. since the vehicle to circumvent 139 .The Rationale behind the Constitutional Ban The rationale behind the constitutional ban on corporations from acquiring. alienable lands of the public domain is not well understood. The constitutional intent. An individual could own as many corporations as his means would allow him. placing the land in the name of a corporation would be more effective in preventing the break-up of farmlands. line 5 which says: `No private corporation or association may hold alienable lands of the public domain except by lease. Huge landholdings by corporations or private persons had spawned social unrest. upon the death of the owner. VILLEGAS: I think that is the spirit of the provision. This constitutional intent is safeguarded by the provision prohibiting corporations from acquiring alienable lands of the public domain. one purpose of the constitutional prohibition against purchases of public agricultural lands by private corporations is to equitably diffuse land ownership or to encourage 'owner-cultivatorship and the economic family-size farm' and to prevent a recurrence of cases like the instant case. But it has not been very clear in jurisprudence what the reason for this is. the commissioners probed the rationale behind this ban. the Constitution could have simply limited the size of alienable lands of the public domain that corporations could acquire.

rights and privileges to reclaim foreshore and submerged areas in Manila Bay. the reclamation of the Freedom Islands.84 hectares of the 750-hectare reclamation project have been reclaimed. in the proportion of 70 percent and 30 percent." plus an option "granted to AMARI to subsequently reclaim another 350 hectares x x x.441 square meters. the total net usable area which is defined in the Amended JVA as the total reclaimed area less 30 percent earmarked for common areas. still to be reclaimed. it would seem. x x x.2. Title to AMARI's share in the net usable area. PEA. PEA delegated to the unincorporated PEA-AMARI joint venture PEA's statutory authority. PEA shall have the duty to execute without delay the necessary deed of transfer or conveyance of the title pertaining to AMARI's Land share based on the Land Allocation Plan. "[T]hree partially reclaimed and substantially eroded islands along Emilio Aguinaldo Boulevard in Paranaque and Las Pinas. Metro Manila. the Amended JVA covers a reclamation area of 750 hectares. is the practical benefit arising from the constitutional ban." (Emphasis supplied) Indisputably. namely: 1.the constitutional intent is removed. thereby granting the Joint Venture the full and exclusive right.2 (c) of the Amended JVA provides that – The Amended Joint Venture Agreement The subject matter of the Amended JVA. PEA shall deliver to AMARI only seventy percent (70%) of the titles pertaining to AMARI. and the rest of the 592.421. at its own expense. the reclamation costs of all the other areas.5 hectares." and 3.15 hectares. Under the Amended JVA. when requested in writing by AMARI. totaling 592. consists of three properties. an additional 350 hectares more or less to regularize the configuration of the reclaimed area. The available alienable public lands are gradually decreasing in the face of an ever-growing population. authority and privilege to undertake the Project in accordance with the Master Development Plan. until such time when a corresponding proportionate area of additional land pertaining to PEA has been titled.5 hectares of reclaimed land which will be titled in its name. "[A]t AMARI's option as approved by PEA. "[A]nother area of 2. shall then cause the issuance and delivery of the proper certificates of title covering AMARI's Land Share in the name of AMARI. AMARI will further shoulder all "x x x.129.559 square meters contiguous to the three islands.578.a of the Amended JVA states that – "PEA hereby contributes to the joint venture its rights and privileges to perform Rawland Reclamation and Horizontal Development as well as own the Reclamation Area. AMARI will reimburse PEA the sum of P1. will be issued in the name of AMARI.00 for PEA's "actual cost" in partially reclaiming the Freedom Islands.15 hectares are still submerged areas forming part of Manila Bay. as stated in its second Whereas clause." 2. AMARI and PEA will share. provided. that if more than seventy percent (70%) of the titled area at any given time pertains to AMARI. The most effective way to insure faithful adherence to this constitutional intent is to grant or sell alienable lands of the public domain only to individuals. Section 3. totaling 367.894. with a combined titled area of 1." 140 ."66 In short. This. Section 5."65 PEA confirms that the Amended JVA involves "the development of the Freedom Islands and further reclamation of about 250 hectares x x x. respectively. under the Amended JVA AMARI will acquire and own a maximum of 367. AMARI will also complete. Only 157.200. To implement the Amended JVA.

"(Emphasis supplied) The constitutional provision prohibiting private corporations from holding public land. x x x." unless they are classified as "agricultural lands" of the public domain. waters. by statutory authority. fisheries. reclaimed lands are classified as alienable and disposable lands of the public domain: 'Sec. as amended).5 hectares of reclaimed foreshore and submerged areas in Manila Bay in view of Sections 2 and 3. 365 admitted in its Report and Recommendation to then President Fidel V. 3. Section 3. by virtue of which PEA.70 1987 Constitution). the rights of ownership and disposition over reclaimed lands have been transferred to PEA. In its Memorandum. Moreover. waters x x x and other natural resources" and consequently "owned by the State. Art. Ramos. and other mineral oils. flora and fauna. 1995 and its supplemental agreement dated August 9. x x x. All lands of the public domain. wildlife. can acquire and own under the Amended JVA 367. or other means. does not apply to reclaimed lands whose ownership has passed on to PEA by statutory grant. With the exception of agricultural lands. The lands disposable under this title shall be classified as follows: Under Section 2. may validly convey the same to any qualified person without violating the Constitution or any statute."69 The Legal Task Force concluded that – "D. x x x. minerals. these reclaimed lands cannot be classified as alienable or disposable if the law has reserved them for some public or quasi-public use. forests or timber. (a) Lands reclaimed by the government by dredging. coal. Likewise. x x x Alienable lands of the public domain shall be limited to agricultural lands. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution which state that: "Section 2. all other natural resources shall not be alienated. Private corporations or associations may not hold such alienable lands of the public domain except by lease. as owner. filling. 59." As such. petroleum. 1995. There must be a law or presidential proclamation officially classifying these reclaimed lands as alienable or disposable and open to disposition or concession. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution.The Amended JVA is the product of a renegotiation of the original JVA dated April 25. a private corporation. XVII." Classification of Reclaimed Foreshore and Submerged Areas PEA readily concedes that lands reclaimed from foreshore or submerged areas of Manila Bay are alienable or disposable lands of the public domain. the Legal Task Force68 constituted under Presidential Administrative Order No. foreshore and submerged areas "shall not be alienated. the foreshore and submerged areas of Manila Bay are part of the "lands of the public domain. all forces of potential energy. Conclusion xxx Reclaimed lands are lands of the public domain. However.71 141 .67 PEA admits that – "Under the Public Land Act (CA 141.'" (Emphasis supplied) The Threshold Issue The threshold issue is whether AMARI. "[R]eclaimed lands are classified as alienable and disposable lands of the public domain. except by lease (Sec. The mere reclamation of these areas by PEA does not convert these inalienable natural resources of the State into alienable or disposable lands of the public domain. and other natural resources are owned by the State.

Garcia. argues that "if the ownership of reclaimed lands may be given to the party constructing the works." Being neither timber. Aquino issued Special Patent No. 1085. Director of Lands. pueblos or private persons. reclaimed the islands under a contract dated November 20. The Court ruled that – "The fact that the Roppongi site has not been used for a long time for actual Embassy service does not automatically convert it to patrimonial property. then it cannot be said that reclaimed lands are lands of the public domain which the State may not alienate. mineral. citing Article 5 of the Spanish Law of Waters of 1866.84 hectares comprising the partially reclaimed Freedom Islands. not available for private appropriation or ownership 'until there is a formal declaration on the part of the government to withdraw it from being such' (Ignacio v. 1973 with the Commissioner of Public Highways. Although the Chancery had transferred to another location thirteen years earlier. pursuant to Section 6 of CA No. 108 Phil.Section 8 of CA No. these certificates of title are still in the name of PEA. with proper permission. and are inalienable pursuant to Section 2. On January 19. 1529 authorizing the issuance of certificates of title corresponding to land patents. nor national park lands. are "waters x x x owned by the State" forming part of the public domain. Bercilles. which was acquired by the Philippine Government for use as the Chancery of the Philippine Embassy. coupled with President Aquino's actual issuance of a special patent covering the Freedom Islands." (Emphasis supplied) PD No. Under the 1987 Constitution. In Laurel vs. Section 3. 1988 then President Corazon C. PD No. 1999 the Register of Deeds of the Municipality of Paranaque issued TCT Nos. agricultural lands of the public domain are the only natural resources that the State may alienate to qualified private parties. AMARI. forest or timber. 141 provides that "only those lands shall be declared open to disposition or concession which have been officially delimited and classified. The Freedom Islands are thus alienable or disposable lands of the public domain. 3517. 66 SCRA 481 [1975]. open to disposition or concession to qualified parties. 7309. A property continues to be part of the public domain. such as the seas or bays. PD No. AMARI claims that the Freedom Islands are private lands because CDCP. on April 9. 7311 and 7312 in the name of PEA pursuant to Section 103 of PD No. 1085 and President Aquino's issuance of a land patent also constitute a declaration that the Freedom Islands are no longer needed for public service. v. PEA had already reclaimed the Freedom Islands although subsequently there were partial erosions on some areas. Lands reclaimed from the sea in consequence of works constructed by the State. the Court still ruled that. Thus. the reclaimed Freedom Islands necessarily fall under the classification of agricultural lands of the public domain.73 the Executive Department attempted to sell the Roppongi property in Tokyo. issued on February 4. The government had also completed the necessary surveys on these islands. shall become the property of the party constructing such works."72 The President has the authority to classify inalienable lands of the public domain into alienable or disposable lands of the public domain. Subsequently. unless 142 . 335 [1960]. 1977."75 Article 5 of the Spanish Law of Waters reads as follows: "Article 5. under Article 42274 of the Civil Code. All other natural resources. At the time then President Aquino issued Special Patent No. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution classifies lands of the public domain into "agricultural. mineral lands. Japan. authorized the issuance of special land patents for lands reclaimed by PEA from the foreshore or submerged areas of Manila Bay. the Freedom Islands were no longer part of Manila Bay but part of the land mass. and national parks. or by the provinces. a property of public dominion retains such character until formally declared otherwise. is equivalent to an official proclamation classifying the Freedom Islands as alienable or disposable lands of the public domain. 3517 in the name of PEA for the 157. 141. then a private corporation. Any such conversion happens only if the property is withdrawn from public use (Cebu Oxygen and Acetylene Co. To this day. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution. 1085.

1973.otherwise provided by the terms of the grant of authority."77 Article 5 of the Spanish Law of Waters must be read together with laws subsequently enacted on the disposition of public lands. the contract between CDCP and the government was executed after the effectivity of the 1973 Constitution which barred private corporations from acquiring any kind of alienable land of the public domain. shall be limited to the National Government or any person authorized by it under a proper contract. issued on January 11. revoked all laws authorizing the reclamation of areas under water and revested solely in the National Government the power to reclaim lands. belonged to the State. these submerged areas are. the reclamation of areas under water. Payment to the contractor may be in cash. but also an additional 592. The reclaimed land can be used as payment in kind only if the reclaimed land is first classified as alienable or disposable land open to disposition. and then declared no longer needed for public service. "waters x x x owned by the State. Private parties could own the reclaimed land only if not "otherwise provided by the terms of the grant of authority." PD No. 3-A repealed Section 5 of the Spanish Law of Waters of 1866 because reclamation of areas under water could now be undertaken only by the National Government or by a person contracted by the National Government. There can be no dispute that these submerged areas form part of the public domain. 3-A declared that – "The provisions of any law to the contrary notwithstanding. under the Constitution. like the sea from which it emerged. 76 Article 5 of the Spanish Law of Waters of 1866 adopted the time-honored principle of land ownership that "all lands that were not acquired from the government. 141 requires that lands of the public domain must first be classified as alienable or disposable before the government can alienate them." forming part of the public domain and consequently 143 . either by purchase or by grant. These lands must not be reserved for public or quasi-public purposes. This contract could not have converted the Freedom Islands into private lands of a private corporation.78 Moreover. 3-A. There is no legislative or Presidential act classifying these submerged areas as alienable or disposable lands of the public domain open to disposition. and in their present state are inalienable and outside the commerce of man." which "shall be undertaken by the PEA or through a proper contract executed by it with any person or entity. whether foreshore or inland. Section 1 of PD No. Until reclaimed from the sea. designated PEA as the National Government's implementing arm to undertake "all reclamation projects of the government. Executive Order No. Private parties may reclaim from the sea only under a contract with the National Government." (Emphasis supplied) Under Article 5 of the Spanish Law of Waters of 1866." Under such contract. 525. a private party receives compensation for reclamation services rendered to PEA. In particular. CA No. subject to the constitutional ban on private corporations from acquiring alienable lands of the public domain." This clearly meant that no one could reclaim from the sea without permission from the State because the sea is property of public dominion. and no longer by grant or permission as provided in Section 5 of the Spanish Law of Waters of 1866. These submerged areas are not covered by any patent or certificate of title. The Amended JVA covers not only the Freedom Islands. private parties could reclaim from the sea only with "proper permission" from the State.15 hectares which are still submerged and forming part of Manila Bay. 1979. (Emphasis supplied) x x x. It also meant that the State could grant or withhold ownership of the reclaimed land because any reclaimed land. belong to the public domain. a private person reclaiming from the sea without permission from the State could not acquire ownership of the reclaimed land which would remain property of public dominion like the sea it replaced. Thus. Presidential Decree No. or in kind consisting of portions of the reclaimed land. issued on February 14.

buildings and/or any of its properties and to impose or collect fees or tolls for their use." Thus. and shall be undertaken by the PEA or through a proper contract executed by it with any person or entity. development. part of the reclaimed foreshore and submerged lands held by the PEA would actually be needed for public use or service since many of the functions imposed on PEA by its charter constitute essential public services. 3-A and PD No."79 Since large portions of these reclaimed lands would obviously be needed for public service. maintain and operate such systems of sanitary sewers as may be necessary. in the process of exercising such control. xxx (14) Promulgate rules. lease 144 . Section 1 of Executive Order No.nêt Section 3 of EO No. Only when actually reclaimed from the sea can these submerged areas be classified as public agricultural lands. Only then can these reclaimed lands be considered alienable or disposable lands of the public domain and within the commerce of man. rentals and any such form of levy and collect such revenues for the exploration. The Department shall: (1) x x x xxx (4) Exercise supervision and control over forest lands. 525. x x x. by declaring that all lands reclaimed by PEA "shall belong to or be owned by the PEA. 1084 or EO No. EO No.1084. roads. the government may then officially classify these lands as alienable or disposable lands open to disposition. regulations and guidelines on the issuance of licenses. 1084.inalienable. directing. Thereafter. a later law than either PD No. tramways and other kinds of land transportation. permits. utilities. which under the Constitution are the only natural resources that the State may alienate." The same section also states that "[A]ll reclamation projects shall be approved by the President upon recommendation of the PEA.1âwphi1. vests in the Department of Environment and Natural Resources ("DENR" for brevity) the following powers and functions: "Sec. fees." Thus. concessions. maintain and operate such storm drains as may be necessary. there must be a formal declaration segregating reclaimed lands no longer needed for public service from those still needed for public service. 525 recognized PEA as the government entity "to undertake the reclamation of lands and ensure their maximum utilization inpromoting public welfare and interests. mineral resources and. 525 provides that PEA "shall be primarily responsible for integrating. [T]o construct. in relation to PD No. 4. reclaimed foreshore and submerged lands of the public domain would automatically become alienable once reclaimed by PEA. Moreover. [T]o construct. 525. Otherwise. The classification of PEA's reclaimed foreshore and submerged lands into alienable or disposable lands open to disposition is necessary because PEA is tasked under its charter to undertake public services that require the use of lands of the public domain." PEA is empowered to issue "rules and regulations as may be necessary for the proper use by private parties of any or all of the highways. 525. and coordinating all reclamation projects for and on behalf of the National Government. alienable and disposable public lands. impose appropriate taxes. the government may declare these lands no longer needed for public service. utilization or gathering of such resources. Powers and Functions. The Revised Administrative Code of 1987. x x x. under EO No. the functions of PEA include the following: "[T]o own or operate railroads. whether or not classified as alienable or disposable. Under Section 5 of PD No. charges. Once reclaimed and transformed into public agricultural lands. PEA became the primary implementing agency of the National Government to reclaim foreshore and submerged lands of the public domain." could not automatically operate to classify inalienable lands into alienable or disposable lands of the public domain.

"85 (Emphasis by PEA) In Laurel vs. On the other hand. 3517 in compliance with the Revised Administrative Code and Sections 6 and 7 of CA No. DENR is also empowered to classify lands of the public domain into alienable or disposable lands subject to the approval of the President. Jr. Likewise. DENR decides whether areas under water." DENR also exercises "exclusive jurisdiction on the management and disposition of all lands of the public domain. DENR decides whether reclaimed lands of PEA should be classified as alienable under Sections 681 and 782 of CA No. DENR exercises "supervision and control over alienable and disposable public lands."80 (Emphasis supplied) As manager. PEA. open to disposition under the Constitution. 141. 141. the mere transfer by the National Government of lands of the public domain to PEA does not make the lands alienable or disposable lands of the public domain. encumbered. and for all other causes which are in furtherance of the conservation of natural resources and supportive of the national interest. sell or lease the reclaimed alienable lands of the public domain. Factoran. should be reclaimed or not. like foreshore or submerged areas of Manila Bay. In short. order. argues that as alienable or disposable lands of the public domain. it then recommends to the President the issuance of a proclamation classifying the lands as alienable or disposable lands of the public domain open to disposition.84 PEA's Authority to Sell Reclaimed Lands DENR also exercises exclusive jurisdiction over the disposition of all lands of the public domain. This means that PEA needs authorization from DENR before PEA can undertake reclamation projects in Manila Bay. Title I and Title III 83 of CA No. or otherwise disposed of in a manner affecting its title. which states that – 145 . 141. DENR is vested with the power to authorize the reclamation of areas under water. countersigned Special Patent No. citing Section 60 of CA No. sub-classification. surveying and titling of lands in consultation with appropriate agencies. cancel or cause to cancel such privileges upon failure. 141 and other applicable laws. 141. noncompliance or violations of any regulation. and brackish water and over all aquatic resources of the country and shall continue to oversee. much less patrimonial lands of PEA. lands reclaimed by PEA remain inalienable lands of the public domain. much less patrimonial lands of PEA. Garcia. whether directly or through private contractors.agreements and such other privileges concerning the development. PEA is tasked to develop. while PEA is vested with the power to undertake the physical reclamation of areas under water. conservator and overseer of the natural resources of the State. admits that reclaimed lands transferred to a branch or subdivision of the government "shall not be alienated. Absent two official acts – a classification that these lands are alienable or disposable and open to disposition and a declaration that these lands are not needed for public service. Only such an official classification and formal declaration can convert reclaimed lands into alienable or disposable lands of the public domain. or in any part of the country. freshwater. supervise and police our natural resources. the Public Land Act. the mere physical act of reclamation by PEA of foreshore or submerged areas does not make the reclaimed lands alienable or disposable lands of the public domain. except when authorized by Congress: x x x." Thus. exploration and utilization of the country's marine. Hence. the reclaimed lands shall be disposed of in accordance with CA No. Clearly. (15) Exercise exclusive jurisdiction on the management and disposition of all lands of the public domain and serve as the sole agency responsible for classification. PEA. We note that then DENR Secretary Fulgencio S. like the Legal Task Force.86 the Court cited Section 48 of the Revised Administrative Code of 1987. Once DENR decides that the reclaimed lands should be so classified.

" (Emphasis supplied) PEA contends that PD No. 525 declared that lands reclaimed 146 . All lands reclaimed by PEA shall belong to or be owned by the PEA which shall be responsible for its administration. Any such conveyance must be authorized and approved by a law enacted by the Congress. That the rights and interests of the Construction and Development Corporation of the Philippines pursuant to the aforesaid contract shall be recognized and respected. The Secretary of Public Highways and the General Manager of the Public Estates Authority shall execute such contracts or agreements. conveyed and assigned to the ownership and administration of the Public Estates Authority established pursuant to PD No. 48. Official Authorized to Convey Real Property. Any and all income that the PEA may derive from the sale. the Court concluded that a law is needed to convey any real property belonging to the Government. 1084. or incident to. In consideration of the foregoing transfer and assignment. 1979. 1084. PD No. the Public Estates Authority shall exercise the rights and assume the obligations of the Republic of the Philippines (Department of Public Highways) arising from. however. On the basis of such patents."Sec. 1085 or EO No. provides that "Sec. 1085. while EO No. The Court declared that "It is not for the President to convey real property of the government on his or her own sole will. 525 constitute the legislative authority allowing PEA to sell its reclaimed lands. It requires executive and legislative concurrence. Section 3 of EO No." There is no express authority under either PD No. the Land Registration Commission shall issue the corresponding certificate of title. development. lease or use of reclaimed lands shall be used in accordance with the provisions of Presidential Decree No. Whenever real property of the Government is authorized by law to be conveyed. 1973 and/or any other contract or reclamation covering the same area is hereby transferred. including appropriate agreements with the Construction and Development Corporation of the Philippines. 525 for PEA to sell its reclaimed lands. the Public Estates Authority shall issue in favor of the Republic of the Philippines the corresponding shares of stock in said entity with an issued value of said shares of stock (which) shall be deemed fully paid and nonassessable. the aforesaid contract between the Republic of the Philippines and the Construction and Development Corporation of the Philippines. 1977. as may be necessary to implement the above. 1085 merely transferred "ownership and administration" of lands reclaimed from Manila Bay to PEA. Provided. 3." (Emphasis supplied) On the other hand." Thus. issued on February 4. utilization or disposition in accordance with the provisions of Presidential Decree No. 525. 1084. provides that – "The land reclaimed in the foreshore and offshore area of Manila Bay pursuant to the contract for the reclamation and construction of the Manila-Cavite Coastal Road Project between the Republic of the Philippines and the Construction and Development Corporation of the Philippines dated November 20. Henceforth. 1085 and EO No. issued on February 14. the deed of conveyance shall be executed in behalf of the government by the following: x x x. PD No. Special land patent/patents shall be issued by the Secretary of Natural Resources in favor of the Public Estates Authority without prejudice to the subsequent transfer to the contractor or his assignees of such portion or portions of the land reclaimed or to be reclaimed as provided for in the above-mentioned contract.

"supplemented by Commonwealth Act No. If found to be valuable. 654. Executive Order No. legislative authority granted to PEA to sell its lands. or where the value of the property does not warrant the expense of publication. PEA may sell to private parties its patrimonial propertiesin accordance with the PEA charter free from constitutional limitations. When government property has become unserviceable for any cause. or for not less than three consecutive days in any newspaper of general circulation. PEA would have to conduct a public bidding in selling or leasing these lands. dispose." This is an acknowledgment that the provisions of CA No. it shall. The constitutional ban on private corporations from acquiring alienable lands of the public domain does not apply to the sale of PEA's patrimonial lands. PEA must observe the provisions of Sections 63 and 67 of CA No." the charter of PEA. or is no longer needed. the provisions of PD No."87(Emphasis supplied) There is. controlled and/or operated by the government." EO No. cannot sell any of its alienable or disposable lands of the public domain to private corporations since Section 3. PEA may also sell its alienable or disposable lands of the public domain to private individuals since. if found to be valueless or unsaleable. administer. Section 79 of PD No. expressly tasks PEA "to develop. the property may be sold at a private sale 147 . The requirement of public auction in the sale of reclaimed lands Assuming the reclaimed lands of PEA are classified as alienable or disposable lands open to disposition. 1085 stating that portions of the reclaimed lands could be transferred by PEA to the "contractor or his assignees" (Emphasis supplied) would not apply to private corporations but only to individuals because of the constitutional ban. otherwise known as the Government Auditing Code. deal in. as amended. EO No. Moreover. 1445 mandates that – "Section 79. however. 1084. in the absence of a law exempting PEA from holding a public auction. including government reclaimed lands. but does not authorize PEA to dispense with public auction. In the event that the public auction fails.by PEA "shall belong to or be owned by PEA. does not exempt PEA from the requirement of public auction. there is no longer any statutory prohibition against such sales and the constitutional ban does not apply to individuals. under Section 79 of PD No. 1084. managed. acquire. it may be destroyed in their presence. upon application of the officer accountable therefor.89 which authorizes PEA "to determine the kind and manner of payment for the transfer" of its assets and properties. subdivide. 1085 would violate both the 1973 and 1987 Constitutions. improve. by notices posted for a like period in at least three public places in the locality where the property is to be sold. 1445. the government is required to sell valuable government property through public bidding. lease and sell any and all kinds of lands x x x owned. therefore. be inspected by the head of the agency or his duly authorized representative in the presence of the auditor concerned and. PEA's charter. 525 expressly states that PEA should dispose of its reclaimed lands "in accordance with the provisions of Presidential Decree No. 654 merely authorizes PEA to decide the mode of payment. 141. whether patrimonial or alienable lands of the public domain. 141 apply to the disposition of reclaimed alienable lands of the public domain unless otherwise provided by law. 141 requiring public auction. whether in kind and in installment. Private corporations remain barred from acquiring any kind of alienable land of the public domain. 3517 expressly states that the patent is issued by authority of the Constitution and PD No. The provision in PD No. PEA. after advertising by printed notice in the Official Gazette. The legislative authority benefits only individuals. however. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution expressly prohibits such sales. it may be sold at public auction to the highest bidder under the supervision of the proper committee on award or similar body in the presence of the auditor concerned or other authorized representative of the Commission. Otherwise. and further declared no longer needed for public service. with the legislative authority.88 Special Patent No.

without need of another public bidding. under a 60-40 sharing of the additional reclaimed areas in favor of the winning bidder. A private corporation. cannot acquire reclaimed alienable lands of the public domain in view of the constitutional ban. 1991. 6957 states – At the public auction sale. the project proponent x x x may likewise be repaid in the form of a share in the revenue of the project or other non-monetary payments.For the financing. however. Besides. it also granted an option to AMARI to reclaim another 350 hectares. . almost double the area publicly auctioned. but not limited to. Private corporations are barred from bidding at the auction sale of any kind of alienable land of the public domain." for brevity). 1991. only Philippine citizens are qualified to bid for PEA's reclaimed foreshore and submerged alienable lands of the public domain. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution is absolute and clear: "Private corporations or associations may not hold such alienable lands of the public domain except by lease. On December 23.94 The failure of public bidding on December 10. in which case the Commission on Audit must approve the selling price.93 However. 1994.90 The Commission on Audit implements Section 79 of the Government Auditing Code through Circular No. Financing. The original JVA. PEA imposed a condition that the winning bidder should reclaim another 250 hectares of submerged areas to regularize the shape of the Freedom Islands. Section 302 of the Local Government Code. also mentioned by PEA and AMARI.at such price as may be fixed by the same committee or body concerned and approved by the Commission. because of the failure of the public bidding on December 10. 95 is not a valid justification for a negotiated sale of 750 hectares. such as. 89-296 91 dated January 27. subject to the constitutional requirements with respect to the ownership of the land: x x x. Construction. enlarged the reclamation area to 750 hectares. Maintenance.84 hectares. operation and maintenance of any infrastructure projects undertaken through the build-operateand-transfer arrangement or any of its variations pursuant to the provisions of this Act. Repayment Scheme. cited by PEA and AMARI as legislative authority to sell reclaimed lands to private parties. The economic situation in the country had greatly improved during the intervening period. x x x. 1995. the original JVA dated April 25. Section 6 of RA No." (Emphasis supplied) PEA originally scheduled a public bidding for the Freedom Islands on December 10. authorizes local governments in land reclamation projects to pay the contractor or developer in kind consisting of a percentage of the reclaimed land. the failure of public bidding happened on December 10. 1995 covered not only the Freedom Islands and the additional 250 hectares still to be reclaimed." Even Republic Act No. to wit: "Section 302. x x x xxx 148 . recognizes the constitutional ban. This circular emphasizes that government assets must be disposed of only through public auction. the Government Corporate Counsel advised PEA it could sell the Freedom Islands through negotiation." The constitutional prohibition in Section 3. even one that undertakes the physical reclamation of a government BOT project. 6. a negotiated contract." Reclamation under the BOT Law and the Local Government Code It is only when the public auction fails that a negotiated sale is allowed. 1989. "Sec. 6957 ("BOT Law.92 No one. submitted a bid. 1991. and Management of Infrastructure Projects by the Private Sector. Operation. construction. the grant of a portion or percentage of the reclaimed land. and a negotiated sale can be resorted to only in case of "failure of public auction. more than three years before the signing of the original JVA on April 25. involving only 407. 1991.

Such land grant is constitutive of a 'fee simple' title or absolute title in favor of petitioner Mindanao Medical Center. Sumail v. 1956. the land covered thereby automatically comes under the operation of Republic Act 496 subject to all the safeguards provided therein. Bureau of Medical Services. the land ceases to be part of the public domain and becomes private property over which the Director of Lands has neither control nor jurisdiction. 3517 and the corresponding certificates of titles. Department of Health. 1971. the Director of Lands lost jurisdiction over the same. portions of the reclaimed land. the repayment plan may consist of the grant of a portion or percentage of the reclaimed land or the industrial estate constructed. In support of their theory. the land ceased to be part of the public domain and became private property over which the Director of Lands has neither control nor jurisdiction. Thus. Judge of CFI of Cotabato. under either the BOT Law or the Local Government Code. which governs the registration of grants or patents 149 .101 where the Court stated – "Proclamation No. dated October 9.Republic v.99 where the Court ruled "While the Director of Lands has the power to review homestead patents. Registration of lands of the public domain Finally. but once the patent is registered and a certificate of title is issued.98 where the Court declared "After the registration and issuance of the certificate and duplicate certificate of title based on a public land patent. and free patents were issued covering the same in favor of the private respondents. Heirs of Gregorio Tengco v.97 where the Court held – "Once the patent was granted and the corresponding certificate of title was issued. therefore."3." In short. Intermediate Appellate Court.84 hectares comprising the Freedom Islands have become private lands of PEA. Heirs of Jose Aliwalas. PEA theorizes that the "act of conveying the ownership of the reclaimed lands to public respondent PEA transformed such lands of the public domain to private lands." Although Section 302 of the Local Government Code does not contain a proviso similar to that of the BOT Law.In case of land reclamation or construction of industrial estates. can only be paid with leaseholds on portions of the reclaimed land. the said lots ceased to be part of the public domain and.100 where the Court held – "When the lots in dispute were certified as disposable on May 19. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution. may be conveyed to him in ownership in view of the legislative authority allowing such conveyance. the contractor or developer. Court of Appeals. Section 122 of the Act. the 157." This theory is echoed by AMARI which maintains that the "issuance of the special patent leading to the eventual issuance of title takes the subject land away from the land of public domain and converts the property into patrimonial or private property. David. Thus. 350. of President Magsaysay legally effected a land grant to the Mindanao Medical Center. he may do so only so long as the land remains part of the public domain and continues to be under his exclusive control. PEA and AMARI contend that with the issuance of Special Patent No. the constitutional restrictions on land ownership automatically apply even though not expressly mentioned in the Local Government Code. if a corporate entity. This is the only way these provisions of the BOT Law and the Local Government Code can avoid a direct collision with Section 3. If the contractor or developer is an individual." 2. of the whole lot." 4. not exceeding 12 hectares96 of non-agricultural lands. Lee Hong Hok v. PEA and AMARI cite the following rulings of the Court: 1. Manalo v." 5. validly sufficient for initial registration under the Land Registration Act.

the only patent and certificates of title issued are those in the name of PEA. as amended. to wit: "NOW. In the instant case. should not be sold to a private corporation. by itself. which performed a public service." the sale of alienable lands of the public domain that are transferred to government units or entities. Registration of land under Act No. Act 496) and shall become registered lands. No one is asking the Director of Lands to cancel PEA's patent or certificates of title. being alienable lands of the public domain. under Section 44 of PD No. 141 apply to the Freedom Islands on matters not covered by PD No." (Emphasis supplied) Thus. 141 constitutes. Congress. however.8-hectare public land granted by the National Government to Mindanao Medical Center. Only individuals can benefit from such law. 141 prohibits.104Alienable lands of the public domain held by government entities under Section 60 of CA No. the same shall be brought forthwith under the operation of this Act (Land Registration Act. the technical description of which are hereto attached and made an integral part hereof. These four cases uniformly hold that the Director of Lands has no jurisdiction over private lands or that upon issuance of the certificate of title the land automatically comes under the Torrens System. The National Government transferred the 12. that by authority of the Constitution of the Philippines and in conformity with the provisions of Presidential Decree No. provides that 'Whenever public lands in the Philippine Islands belonging to the Government of the United States or to the Government of the Philippines are alienated. The transfer of the Freedom Islands to PEA was made subject to the provisions of CA No.103 Jurisprudence holding that upon the grant of the patent or issuance of the certificate of title the alienable land of the public domain automatically becomes private land cannot apply to government units and entities like PEA. This fifth case is an example of a public land being registered under Act No. 1084.894) square meters. a "statutory lien affecting title" of the registered land even if not annotated on the certificate of title.'" The first four cases cited involve petitions to cancel the land patents and the corresponding certificates of titlesissued to private parties. a government unit under the Department of Health. a wholly government owned corporation performing public as well as proprietary functions. 496 without the land losing its character as a property of public dominion. 1084. cannot authorize the sale to private corporations of reclaimed alienable lands of the public domain because of the constitutional ban. Registration is not a mode of acquiring ownership but is merely evidence of ownership previously conferred by any of the recognized modes of acquiring ownership. 496 or PD No. 1529 does not vest in the registrant private or public ownership of the land. 141. the provisions of CA No.915. 3517 issued by then President Aquino.102 The registration of lands of the public domain under the Torrens system.involving public lands. Registration does not give the registrant a better right than what the registrant had prior to the registration. granted or conveyed to persons or to public or private corporations. The fifth case cited involves the registration under the Torrens System of a 12. In fact.8-hectare public land in the name of Mindanao Medical Center under Section 122 of Act No. The Court affirmed the registration of the 12. there are hereby granted and conveyed unto the Public Estates Authority the aforesaid tracts of land containing a total area of one million nine hundred fifteen thousand eight hundred ninety four (1. the thrust of the instant petition is that PEA's certificates of title should remain with PEA. 141 as expressly stated in Special Patent No.8-hectare public land to serve as the site for the hospital buildings and other facilities of Mindanao Medical Center. Section 60 of CA No. THEREFORE. 150 . 141 remain public lands because they cannot be alienated or encumbered unless Congress passes a law authorizing their disposition. No patent or certificate of title has been issued to any private party. supplemented by Commonwealth Act No. cannot convert public lands into private lands. Section 60 of CA No. "except when authorized by Congress. and the land covered by these certificates. 1529. 496. KNOW YE.

3-A requires that all reclamation of areas shall be limited to the National Government or any person authorized by it under proper contract. The reclaimed lands being leased or sold by PEA are not private lands. x x x . Thus. The alienable lands of the public domain must be transferred to qualified private parties. or to government entities not tasked to dispose of public lands. 1416. coordinated and integrated approach in the reclamation of lands. Presidential Decree No. and Whereas. Whereas. or merger of functions and offices. THEREFORE. the constitutional ban will become illusory if Congress can declare lands of the public domain as private or patrimonial lands in the hands of a government agency tasked to dispose of public lands. Presidential Decree No.The grant of legislative authority to sell public lands in accordance with Section 60 of CA No. with authority to sell reclaimed lands. President of the Philippines. FERDINAND E. there is a need to give further institutional support to the Government's declared policy to provide for a coordinated. that. directing. PEA became the central implementing agency of the National Government to reclaim foreshore and submerged areas of the public domain. Under EO No. reclamation projects of any national government agency or entity authorized under its charter shall be undertaken in consultation with the PEA upon approval of the President. 141 does not automatically convert alienable lands of the public domain into private or patrimonial lands. prior to such law. Whereas. Whereas. NOW. 1416 provides the President with continuing authority to reorganize the national government including the transfer. PEA took the place of DENR as the government agency charged with leasing or selling reclaimed lands of the public domain. in the same manner that DENR. MARCOS. by virtue of the powers vested in me by the Constitution and pursuant to Presidential Decree No. This will allow private corporations to acquire directly from government agencies limitless areas of lands which. do hereby order and direct the following: Section 1. before these lands can become private or patrimonial lands. 1084 creates the Public Estates Authority as a government corporation to undertake reclamation of lands and ensure their maximum utilization in promoting public welfare and interests." Whereas. and shall be undertaken by the PEA or through a proper contract executed by it with any person or entity. Otherwise. and coordinating all reclamation projects for and on behalf of the National Government. are concededly public lands. 525. All reclamation projects shall be approved by the President upon recommendation of the PEA. a central authority is needed to act on behalf of the National Government which shall ensure a As the central implementing agency tasked to undertake reclamation projects nationwide. 525 Designating the Public Estates Authority as the Agency Primarily Responsible for all Reclamation Projects Whereas. 525 declares that – "EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. The Public Estates Authority (PEA) shall be primarily responsible for integrating. economical and efficient reclamation of lands. Provided. EO No. I. Presidential Decree No. when it disposes of other alienable lands. abolition. does 151 . there are several reclamation projects which are ongoing or being proposed to be undertaken in various parts of the country which need to be evaluated for consistency with national programs.

not dispose of private lands but alienable lands of the public domain. not private lands. Thus. To allow vast areas of reclaimed lands of the public domain to be transferred to PEA as private lands will sanction a gross violation of the constitutional ban on private corporations from acquiring any kind of alienable land of the public domain. 496 "Sec. PEA will simply turn around. municipality. 1529. 496. as PEA has now done under the Amended JVA. 1529 includes conveyances of public lands to public corporations. donated. 1529. This will completely reverse the clear direction of constitutional development in this country. can even be applied to alienable agricultural lands of the public domain since PEA can "acquire x x x any and all kinds of lands." as provided in Section 60 of CA No. In the hands of the government agency tasked and authorized to dispose of alienable of disposable lands of the public domain. The 1935 Constitution allowed private corporations to acquire not more than 1. granted or conveyed to any person. Alienable lands of the public domain "granted. The contention of PEA and AMARI that public lands. 122. may be registered under the Torrens System pursuant to Section 103 of PD No. 496 or PD No. Such registration." PEA can hold both lands of the public domain and private lands. PEA's charter expressly states that PEA "shall hold lands of the public domain" as well as "any and all kinds of lands. the phrase "conveyed to any person" in Section 103 of PD No. however. once registered under Act No." PD No. Whenever public lands in the Philippine Islands belonging to the x x x Government of the Philippine Islands are alienated. if allowed. Whenever public land is by the Government alienated." This 152 . and Section 103 of PD No. This scheme will effectively nullify the constitutional ban in Section 3. except when authorized by Congress. now PD No. 1529 "Sec. This will result in corporations amassing huge landholdings never before seen in this country . 141. without losing their character as public lands. 141 that the land "shall not be alienated. automatically become private lands is contrary to existing laws. Several laws authorize lands of the public domain to be registered under the Torrens System or Act No. or branch or subdivision of the Government. and transfer several hundreds of hectares of these reclaimed and still to be reclaimed lands to a single private corporation in only one transaction. provide as follows: Act No. or transferred to a province. the same shall be brought forthwith under the operation of this Decree. these lands are still public. 1529. is expressly subject to the condition in Section 60 of CA No. 105 The 1973 Constitution prohibited private corporations from acquiring any kind of public land. Only when qualified private parties acquire these lands will the lands become private lands. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution which was intended to diffuse equitably the ownership of alienable lands of the public domain among Filipinos. the mere fact that alienable lands of the public domain like the Freedom Islands are transferred to PEA and issued land patents or certificates of title in PEA's name does not automatically make such lands private. 1529. granted." (Emphasis supplied) Based on its legislative history." This will open the floodgates to corporations and even individuals acquiring hundreds of hectares of alienable lands of the public domain under the guise that in the hands of PEA these lands are private lands. respectively.024 hectares of public lands. Furthermore. or conveyed to persons or the public or private corporations. and the 1987 Constitution has unequivocally reiterated this prohibition. Certificate of Title to Patents. Section 122 of Act No. This scheme. the same shall be brought forthwith under the operation of this Act and shall become registered lands. encumbered or otherwise disposed of in a manner affecting its title. 103.creating the very evil that the constitutional ban was designed to prevent. now numbering over 80 million strong. 496.

1529 are not exclusively private or patrimonial lands. Private property purchased by the National Government for expansion of an airport may also be titled in the name of the government agency tasked to administer the airport. Official Authorized to Convey Real Property." 107 153 . foreshore and marshy lands of the public domain that have been titled but still cannot be alienated or encumbered unless expressly authorized by Congress. Whenever real property of the Government is authorized by law to be conveyed." (Emphasis supplied) Thus. 496 or PD No. 48. or interest therein. is expropriated or taken by eminent domain." (Emphasis supplied) Consequently.provision refers to government reclaimed. In the words of AMARI. 1529 states – "Sec. Private lands taken by the Government for public use under its power of eminent domain become unquestionably part of the public domain. or any other agency or instrumentality exercising such right for the land so taken. by the executive head of the agency or instrumentality. private property purchased by the National Government for expansion of a public wharf may be titled in the name of a government corporation regulating port operations in the country. a new certificate shall be issued in favor of the National Government. Section 85 of PD No. Land taken by eminent domain. A memorandum of the right or interest taken shall be made on each certificate of title by the Register of Deeds. Private property donated to a municipality for use as a town plaza or public school site may likewise be titled in the name of the municipality. city. AMARI makes a parting shot that the Amended JVA is not a sale to AMARI of the Freedom Islands or of the lands to be reclaimed from submerged areas of Manila Bay. and the nature of the public use. Section 48. The legal expenses incident to the memorandum of registration or issuance of a new certificate of title shall be for the account of the authority taking the land or interest therein. and where the fee simple is taken. 1529. the deed of conveyance shall be executed in behalf of the government by the following: (1) x x x (2) For property belonging to the Republic of the Philippines. 1529 authorizes the Register of Deeds to issue in the name of the National Government new certificates of title covering such expropriated lands. province. There is no requirement or provision in any existing law for the de-registration of land from the Torrens System. Chapter 12. the number of the certificate of title. or any other agency or instrumentality exercising such right shall file for registration in the proper Registry a certified copy of the judgment which shall state definitely by an adequate description. The Revised Administrative Code of 1987 also recognizes that lands of the public domain may be registered under the Torrens System. The need for legislative authority prevents the registered land of the public domain from becoming private land that can be disposed of to qualified private parties. city or municipality. but titled in the name of any political subdivision or of any corporate agency or instrumentality. Lands of the public domain may also be registered pursuant to existing laws. the Amended JVA "is not a sale but a joint venture with a stipulation for reimbursement of the original cost incurred by PEA for the earlier reclamation and construction works performed by the CDCP under its 1973 contract with the Republic. province. Section 85 of PD No. the particular property or interest expropriated. lands registered under Act No. 496 or PD No.106 All these properties become properties of the public domain. Nevertheless. municipality. Book I of the Code states – "Sec. 85. and if already registered under Act No. Whenever any registered land. the fact remains that the Amended JVA requires PEA to "cause the issuance and delivery of the certificates of title conveying AMARI's Land Share in the name of AMARI." Whether the Amended JVA is a sale or a joint venture. the National Government. remain registered land.

Since the Amended JVA also seeks to transfer to AMARI ownership of 290. 141. Thereafter. Those who attempt to dispose of inalienable natural resources of the State. Since the Amended JVA seeks to transfer to AMARI. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution. Reclaimed lands retain their inherent potential as areas for public use or public service. the transfer of such reclaimed alienable lands of the public domain to AMARI will be void in view of Section 3. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution which prohibits private corporations from acquiring any kind of alienable land of the public domain. now covered by certificates of title in the name of PEA. do so at their own risk. Only then can these lands qualify as agricultural lands of the public domain. 2. the Amended JVA violates glaringly Sections 2 and 3. PEA may reclaim these submerged areas. Alienable lands of the public domain. ownership of 77. increasingly becoming scarce natural resources." The Court must perform its duty to defend and 154 . a transaction considered a sale or alienation under CA No. the government can classify the reclaimed lands as alienable or disposable. Still. The 592. are to be distributed equitably among our ever-growing population. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution which prohibits private corporations from acquiring any kind of alienable land of the public domain. Historically. PEA may lease these lands to private corporations but may not sell or transfer ownership of these lands to private corporations. or seek to circumvent the constitutional ban on alienation of lands of the public domain to private corporations. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution. 4. To insure such equitable distribution. The Regalian doctrine is deeply implanted in our legal system. Under Article 1409 112 of the Civil Code. Clearly." or whose "object is outside the commerce of men.15 hectares of submerged areas are inalienable and outside the commerce of man.This stipulation still contravenes Section 3. subject to the ownership limitations in the 1987 Constitution and existing laws. The transfer of title and ownership is a "disposition" of the reclaimed lands. 3. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution which prohibits the alienation of natural resources other than agricultural lands of the public domain.156 hectares111 of still submerged areas of Manila Bay. Lands reclaimed from foreshore and submerged areas also form part of the public domain and are also inalienable. unless converted pursuant to law into alienable or disposable lands of the public domain. and further declare them no longer needed for public service. In their present state. 108 the Government Auditing Code.15 hectares of submerged areas of Manila Bay remain inalienable natural resources of the public domain until classified as alienable or disposable lands open to disposition and declared no longer needed for public service. lands reclaimed by the government are sui generis. such transfer is void for being contrary to Section 3.34 hectares110of the Freedom Islands. the 1973 and 1987 Constitutions have barred private corporations from acquiring any kind of alienable land of the public domain. such transfer is void for being contrary to Section 2. The government can make such classification and declaration only after PEA has reclaimed these submerged areas. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution which provides that private corporations "shall not hold such alienable lands of the public domain except by lease. the 592. contracts whose "object or purpose is contrary to law. a private corporation. PEA may only sell these lands to Philippine citizens.84 hectares of reclaimed lands comprising the Freedom Islands. We can now summarize our conclusions as follows: 1." are "inexistent and void from the beginning. not available for sale to private parties unlike other alienable public lands.109 and Section 3. The 157. which are the only natural resources the government can alienate. Foreshore and submerged areas form part of the public domain and are inalienable. are alienable lands of the public domain." The transfer of title and ownership to AMARI clearly means that AMARI will "hold" the reclaimed lands other than by lease.

CA. 134 SCRA 438 (1985). Besides. IAC and Roman Catholic Bishop of Lucena. supra note 2 at 9. Considering that the Amended JVA is null and void ab initio. the petition is GRANTED. Inc. CA and Iglesia. Hermanos y Hermanas de Sta. p.. Davide. 48). 3 PEA's Memorandum." 8 Teofisto Guingona. 10 Report and Recommendation of the Legal Task Force. Abejo. Article XIV. Kapunan. concur. and Associate Solicitor Raymund I. Republic v. 11 AMARI's Comment dated June 24. Enage. Ynares-Santiago. in its Statement of Facts and the Case. Judge F. 3. Puno. Annex "C". 1999. "A court shall take judicial notice. 119 SCRA 449 (1982). Director of Lands v. citing COA Audit Circular No. 59 SCRA 183 (1974 ). Panganiban. 146 SCRA 509 (1986). 280 SCRA 297 (1997). 1994. Republic v. Cusi. Salonga v. 5 PEA's Memorandum. Natividad v. 14 Petitioner's Memorandum dated July 6. 9 Renato Cayetano. Marcos. 1999.. p. JJ. Rigodon signing PEA's Memorandum. 12 WHEREFORE. AMARI's Memorandum dated June 19. PEA's Memorandum quoted extensively. without the introduction of evidence.. pp. 89-296. and this last issue involves a determination of factual matters. supra note 2 at 7. Villaflor v. Sandoval-Gutierrez. Gonzales v. and Republic v. 16 Represented by Azcuna Yorac Arroyo & Chua Law Offices. 41 SCRA 1 (1971 ). 1999. Assistant Solicitor General Azucena R. p. Director of Lands v. 65 SCRA 624 (1975 ). Cruz de Mayo. and Romulo Mabanta Sayoc & De los Angeles Law Offices. See also Senate Committee Report No. 118 SCRA 492 (1982). Director of Lands v. CA and Nasipit Lumber Co. 15 SO ORDERED. Rollo. Paño. Republic v. 18 Section 11. with Solicitor General Ricardo P. the Government Corporate Counsel.84-hectare Freedom Islands in view of the failure of the public bidding held on December 10. 4 In Opinion No. In Ayog v. Enrile. p. Castro-Bartolome. Rule 129 of the Rules of Court which provides. 13 AMARI filed three motions for extension of time to file comment (Rollo. 1084. 141 SCRA 21 (1986). 139). Republic v. Vitug. 19 Manila Electric Co. and therefore declares the Amended JVA null and void ab initio. Jr. 128 SCRA 44 (1984). 124 SCRA 460 (1983). 330 dated December 23. The Public Estates Authority and Amari Coastal Bay Development Corporation are PERMANENTLY ENJOINED from implementing the Amended Joint Venture Agreement which is hereby declared NULL and VOID ab initio. while PEA filed nine motions for extension of time (Rollo. 114 SCRA 875 (1982). 7 The existence of this report is a matter of judicial notice pursuant to Section 1. the Court is not a trier of facts. Bellosillo. Lood. Aquino v.. Seventh issue: whether the Court is the proper forum to raise the issue of whether the Amended JVA is grossly disadvantageous to the government. Dela Camara v. Quisumbing. Iglesia ni Cristo. Jr. Virgilio C.. p.uphold the Constitution. 1998. Represented by the Office of the Solicitor General. 114 SCRA 799 (1982). the Court did not apply the constitutional ban in the 1973 155 . 17 Footnote 1 Section 4 of PD No. advised PEA that PEA could negotiate the sale of the 157. 3. v. 12. the Statement of Facts in Senate Committee Report No. C. 560. 1997.. 6 Ibid. Mendoza. and Corona. 42. pp. Austria-Martinez. Cendana and Iglesia ni Cristo. Galvez. 68. 32. Villanueva and Iglesia ni Cristo. 1991 where there was not a single bidder. there is no necessity to rule on this last issue. 560 dated September 16.J. of x x x the official acts of the legislature x x x. 2 PEA's Memorandum dated August 4. IAC and Acme Plywood & Veneer Co. 168 SCRA 165 (1988). 202 SCRA 493 (1991). 127. 38. Balanon-Corpuz.

40 People's Movement for Press Freedom. et al.. Biñan Development Co. income. the secrets. integrity. style of work. 24 Article 2 of the Civil Code (prior to its amendment by EO No. No. (1986). it may be destroyed in their presence. 1999. No. it may be sold at public auction to the highest bidder under the supervision of the proper committee on award or similar body in the presence of the auditor concerned or other authorized representative of the Commission. Aquino-Sarmiento v. Morato. Note 22. 33 Supra.A.A. 37 See Note 22.A. Quisumbing v. 8043 (Inter-Country Adoption Act) classifies 156 . 36 Almonte v. 29 32 Record of the Constitutional Commission. Section 14 of R. 1988. or apparatus of any manufacturer or producer. 21 Annex "B". or for not less than three consecutive days in any newspaper of general circulation.. or where the value of the property does not warrant the expense of publication. although the sales patent was issued after the 1973 Constitution took effect. if found to be valueless or unsaleable.2 (c) and (e) of the Amended JVA. Jr. or is no longer needed. 638 provides as follows: "There shall be published in the Official Gazette all important legislative acts and resolutions of the Congress of the Philippines. loyalty. Raul Manglapus. Inc. 266 SCRA 167 (1997). 150 SCRA 530 (1987). 200) provided as follows: "Laws shall take effect after fifteen days following the completion of their publication in the Official Gazette." 38 Chavez v. 84642. x x x. 8800 (Safeguard Measures Act) prohibits the release to the public of confidential information submitted in evidence to the Tariff Commission. Belmonte. unless it is provided otherwise. En Banc Resolution dated April 13. AMARI's Memorandum dated June 19. or confidential information regarding the business of any taxpayer. Vol. Judge Gumban. Public officers and employees must at all times be accountable to the people.R. knowledge of which was acquired by him in the discharge of his official duties. pp. 244 SCRA 286 (1995). all executive and administrative orders and proclamations. V. or estate of any taxpayer. 41 Section 270 of the National Internal Revenue Code punishes any officer or employee of the Bureau of Internal Revenue who divulges to any person. after advertising by printed notice in the Official Gazette. 8504 (Philippine AIDS Prevention and Control Act) classifies as confidential the medical records of HIV patients. 16-17. Civil Service Commission. x x x. except such as have no general applicability." 26 Section 79 of the Government Auditing Codes provides as follows: "When government property has become unserviceable for any cause. PCGG. Valmonte v. In the event that the public auction fails. 24-25. information regarding the business. and lead modest lives. Article XI of the 1987 Constitution states as follows: "Public office is a public trust. 1073. see note 22. Section 6 (j) of R. 28 Section 1. except as allowed by law. 193 SCRA 520 (1991). No." See note 22. No. v. 299 SCRA 744 (1998). PCGG. upon application of the officer accountable therefor. act with patriotism and justice. 23 136 SCRA 27 (1985). be inspected by the head of the agency or his duly authorized representative in the presence of the auditor concerned and. Section 3 (n) of R. had fully complied with all its obligations and even paid the full purchase price before the effectivity of the 1973 Constitution. by notices posted for a like period in at least three public places in the locality where the property is to be sold. 35 Legaspi v. pp. see note 22. serve them with utmost responsibility. Vasquez.Constitution because the applicant corporation. the property may be sold at a private sale at such price as may be fixed by the same committee or body concerned and approved by the Commission. 20 PD No. 27 Paat v. 22 Chavez v. 203 SCRA 515 (1991). Hon. G. and efficiency. Court of Appeals. operation. Chavez v. Vasquez. Section 5. 25 Section 1 of CA No. 39 Almonte v. it shall.." 30 170 SCRA 256 (1989). If found to be valuable. 34 Ibid. see note 36. 31 See note 22. 170 SCRA 256 (1989). PCGG.

confirming them in what they now have and giving them more if necessary. Lee. or otherwise disposed of in a manner affecting its title. 43 Cariño v. 49 Section 57 of Act No. the principle is admitted. or 157 . Puno in Republic Real Estate Corporation v." or "concession" as used in this Act. but. 93 Phil. use. Director of Lands." See concurring opinion of Justice Reynato S. or benefit of the lands of the public domain other than timber or mineral lands. was recognized by the laws of Spain. 2874. 108 Phil. cited in 3 Philippine. Nevertheless. 'Where such possessors shall not be able to produce title deeds. still pertaining to the royal crown and patrimony. 926." or "concession" as used in this Act." "disposition. or by us. No. 2874 provided as follows: "x x x." 50 Krivenko v. municipality. 935 (1909). 335 (1960). and natural parents. Court of Appeals. is actually a species of a grant by the State. referring to lands in the possession of an occupant and of his predecessors-in-interest. 2874 governed alienable lands of the public domain for agricultural purposes. lease. Court of Appeals. did not cover reclaimed lands. 79 Phil. but also their future and their probable increase. 46 Act No. or other valuable right which in the opinion of the Chief of the Bureau of Public Lands would be prejudicial to the interests of the public. 2874 provided as follows: "The words "alienation. audiencias. while Title III of the same Act governed alienable lands of the public domain for non-agricultural purposes. Jr. declared in Cariño: "Prescription is mentioned again in the royal cedula of October 15. 299 SCRA 199 (1998). adopting parents. 7942 (Philippine Mining Act) requires the Department of Environment and Natural Resources to maintain the confidentiality of confidential information supplied by contractors who are parties to mineral agreements or financial and technical assistance agreements. taking into consideration not only their present condition. even against the Crown lands. 45 Ignacio v. at all events. all the rest of said lands may remain free and unencumbered for us to dispose of as we may wish. Director of Lands." "disposition. This Act.A. was also titled the Public Land Act.as confidential the records of the adopted child. it shall be sufficient if they shall show that ancient possession. Section 23 of this Act provided as follows: "x x x In no case may lands leased under the provisions of this chapter be taken so as to gain control of adjacent land. territories. water. 141 defined the terms "alienation" and "disposition" as follows: "The words "alienation. which administration and disposition shall be governed by the laws at present in force or which may hereafter be enacted. have reverted to or become the property of the Commonwealth of the Philippines. it is our will that all lands which are held without proper and true deeds of grant be restored to us according as they belong to us. The exception mentioned in Cariño. and after distributing to the natives what may be necessary for tillage and pasturage. 42 The Recopilacion de Leyes de las Indias declared that: "We. shall mean any of the methods authorized by this Act for the acquisition. donated." 52 Like Act No. encumbered. pastures." 48 Title II of Act No. 41 Phil. Register of Deeds. The United States Supreme Court. 197 SCRA 13 (1991). as a valid title by prescription. 461 (1947). however. or transferred to a province. or branch or subdivision of the Government shall not be alienated.' It may be that this means possession from before 1700. speaking through Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes. 1754. x x x. shall mean any of the methods authorized by this Act for the acquisition. having acquired full sovereignty over the Indies. enacted on October 7. Insular Government. or in our name. ways. stream. being privately owned. and possessions not heretofore ceded away by our royal predecessors.. roadstead. except when authorized by the legislature. we see no sufficient reason for hesitating to admit that it was recognized in the Philippines in regard to lands over which Spain had only a paper sovereignty. Laurel v. and all lands. Joven v." 47 Section 10 of Act No. and governors may seem necessary for public squares. 141 states as follows: "The provisions of this Act shall apply to the lands of the public domain." See also Republic v. See concurring opinion of Justice Reynato S. 134 (1953). shore line. Garcia. in order that after reserving before all what to us or to our viceroys. Section 94 (f) of R. 299 SCRA 199 (1998). 51 Section 2 of CA No. 44 Article 1 of the Spanish Law of Waters of 1866. lease. Section 10 of CA No. since time immemorial. 546. and commons in those places which are peopled. but the land so granted. As prescription. use. but timber and mineral lands shall be governed by special laws and nothing in this Act provided shall be understood or construed to change or modify the administration and disposition of the lands commonly called "friar lands" and those which. 187 SCRA 797 (1990). Puno in Republic Real Estate Corporation v. way. 1903.

benefit of the lands of the public domain other than timber or mineral lands. 41 Phil." 54 55 Covering Sections 58 to 68 of CA No. 20. 56 Section 1. 935 (1909). 730. 141 which refers to marshy lands leased for residential. 60 See note 60. any Filipino citizen of legal age who is not the owner of a home lot in the municipality or city in which he resides and who had in good faith established his residence on a parcel of land of the Republic of the Philippines which is not needed for public service. 64 118 SCRA 492 (1982). 299 SCRA 199 (1998). 73 187 SCRA 797 (1990). taking into account ecological. Article XIII of the 1935 Constitution limited the disposition and utilization of public agricultural lands to Philippine citizens or to corporations at least sixty percent owned by Philippine citizens. see note 12 at 3. 10 & 11. No. that until the withdrawal of United States sovereignty in the Philippines. industrial or other non-agricultural purposes.nêt 58 RA No. 6657 (Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law of 1988) states. Section 4 (a) of RA No. see note 6. Court of Appeals. de Castillo. p. AMARI's Memorandum. however. thereof. 71 Section 8 of CA No. 730 provided as follows: "Notwithstanding the provisions of Sections 61 and 67 of Commonwealth Act No. 72 Emphasis supplied. p. R. when no longer needed for public use or public service. 65 Annex "B". Insular Government. among others. "Citizens and corporations of the United States shall enjoy in the Commonwealth of the Philippines all the civil rights of the citizens and corporations. fishponds or other similar purposes for at least five years from the date of the lease contract with the government. 19 Phil. Government v. 1948. shall have delimited by law. on June 16. 69 Annex "C". 63 74 Article 422 of the Civil Code states as follows: "Property of public dominion. 85. Rodriguez. AMARI's Memorandum. did not apply to marshy lands under Section 56 (c).A. 293." 53 R. 44. subject to the original Ordinance appended to the 1935 Constitution stating. 68 See notes 9. 59 See note 49. claims or rights arising or existing under the laws and the Constitution of the Philippines which are not by law required to appear of record in the Registry of Deeds in order to be valid against subsequent purchasers or encumbrancers of record" constitute statutory liens affecting the title. the specific limits of the public domain. respectively. developmental and equity considerations. 76 Dizon v. 112 (1929). not more than one thousand square meters at a price to be fixed by the Director of Lands with the approval of the Secretary of Agriculture and Natural Resources. 293 allowing the Ibid. 1529 (previously Section 39 of Act No." In addition.A. 62 Insular Government v. 53 Phil. which took effect on June 18. "No reclassification of forest or mineral lands to agricultural lands shall be undertaken after the approval of this Act until Congress." 75 AMARI's Comment dated June 24. 6657 has suspended the authority of the President to reclassify forest or mineral lands into agricultural lands. 13 SCRA 705 (1965). Title III of CA No. Aldecoa. 158 .A. 70 This should read Article XII. Cabangis. 505 (1911). Congress enacted R. see note 2 at 1 & 2. 496) provides that "liens. p. Rollo. No. 67 Ibid. shall be given preference to purchase at a private sale of which reasonable notice shall be given to him. 61 Republic Real Estate Corporation v. as amended by RA No. No. 1952. see note 56. 141." private sale of marshy alienable or disposable lands of the public domain to lessees who have improved and utilized the same as farms.1âwphi1. 66 PEA's Memorandum. 141. Lat Vda. p. 3. 141. however. 1998. Section 1 of RA No. 77 Cariño v. 57 Section 44 of PD No. authorized the private sale of home lots to actual occupants of public lands not needed for public service. x x x. commercial. 163 SCRA 286 (1988). 293. This was.. shall form part of the patrimonial property of the State. Republic v.

by Manila Bay. shall from time to time declare what lands are open to disposition or concession under this Act. dated June 11. 41. PEA's Memorandum. 946 (1955). Statement of Facts. pp. 6657 (Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law) limits the ownership of "public or private agricultural land" to a maximum of five hectares per person." See concurring opinion of Justice Reynato S. 299 SCRA 1999 (1998). 560. 1954. upon recommendation of the Secretary of Agriculture and Natural Resources. 90 While PEA claims there was a failure of public bidding on December 10.A. 87 Section 4 (b) of PD No. Section 6 of R. 159 . Article XII of the 1987 Constitution. 97 96 Phil. 89-296." 82 Section 7 of CA No. Book IV. as described in detail in the Proclamation. No. by Manila Bay. 93 Opinion No. 293 provided as follows: "The provisions of section sixty-one of Commonwealth Act Numbered One hundred and forty-one to the contrary notwithstanding. 101 73 SCRA 146 (1976). 730 allows the private sale of home lots to actual occupants of public lands. p. or similar purposes for at least five years from the date of the contract of lease. See note 63. No. see note 2. 7. shall declare that the same are not necessary for the public service. 94 PEA's Memorandum. 80 Section 4. see note 2 at 45." However." 83 On "Lands for Residential.78 Proclamation No. on the East. Chapter I. citing COA Audit Circular No. shall from time to time classify the lands of the public domain into – (a) Alienable or disposable." states that disposal through negotiated sale may be resorted to if "[T]here was a failure of public auction. 1948. 560 did not discuss this issue. fishpond." which area. there is no showing that the Commission on Audit approved the price or consideration stipulated in the negotiated Amended JVA as required by Section 79 of the Government Auditing Code. Island of Luzon." 92 Senate Committee Report No. the President. See note 5. 1991. 1981. by Dewey Boulevard. 89-296. 1084 88 R. De Veyra. is "B]ounded on the North. issued by President Ramon Magsaysay on July 5. Corporate Secretary. Under Sections 2 and 3. 89 Issued on February 26. as appearing in the Minutes of the PEA Board of Directors Meeting held on May 30. homestead or grant.A.66 hectares of the public domain in Manila Bay "situated in the cities of Manila and Pasay andthe municipality of Paranaque. citing the Minutes of Meeting of the PEA Board of Directors held on December 19. upon the recommendation of the Secretary of Agriculture and Commerce. 525. on "Sale Thru Negotiation. 81 Section 6 of CA No 141 provides as follows: "The President." 84 RA No. 835. 1991. 1991. Senate Committee Report No. Court of Appeals. 79 Fifth Whereas clause of EO No. authorized the sale of marshy lands under certain conditions. reserved for "National Park purposes" 464. or Industrial and other Similar Purposes. Puno in Republic Real Estate Corporation v. 293. and on the south and west. 99 168 SCRA 198 (1988). 141 provides as follows: "For purposes of the administration and disposition of alienable or disposable public lands. 7-8. 1991. Province of Rizal. "national parks" are inalienable natural resources of the State. 98 48 SCRA 372 (1977). 560. Section 1 of RA No." 85 86 See note 73. 91 Paragraph 2 (a) of COA Circular No. Title XIV. enacted on June 16. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution provides as follows: "x x x Citizens of the Philippines may x x x acquire not more than twelve hectares thereof by purchase. per Certification of Jaime T. citing PEA Board Resolution No. Commercial. marshy lands and lands under water bordering on shores or banks or navigable lakes or rivers which are covered by subsisting leases or leases which may hereafter be duly granted under the provisions of the said Act and are already improved and have been utilized for farming. may be sold to the lessees thereof under the provisions of Chapter Five of the said Act as soon as the President. upon recommendation by the Secretary of Agriculture and Commerce. 100 172 SCRA 795 (1989). x x x. 330. 95 Senate Committee Report No. 96 Section 3.

89-296 dated January 27. object or purpose is contrary to law. 115381 December 23. 1986 speaks of "guidelines (which) shall govern the general procedures on thedivestment or disposal of assets of government-owned and/or controlled corporations and their subsidiaries. The words "alienation. see note 21 at 16. respondents. 106 Harty v. petitioner. Article XIII of the 1935 Constitution. which is 70 percent of the net usable area of 414.: 160 . 108 Section 10 of CA No. Ayala Cia. Section 44 applies to certificates of title issued pursuant to a land patent granted by the government. power or title. 14 SCRA 259 (1965). the LAND TRANSPORTATION FRANCHISING AND REGULATORY BOARD." or "concession" as used in this Act. x x x. Jose F. Cesar B. 13 Phil." "disposition. x x x. includes all kinds of disposal or divestment of government assets.49 hectares." FIRST DIVISION G. 107 Annex "B". 111 The share of AMARI in the submerged areas for reclamation is 290. or benefit of the lands of the public domain other than timber or mineral lands." Likewise. The net usable area is the total land area of the Freedom Islands less 30 percent allocated for common areas.102 Avila v. speaks of "guidelines (which) shall be observed and adhered to in the divestment or disposal of property and other assets of all government entities/instrumentalities" and that "divestment shall refer to the manner or scheme of taking away. use. Tapucar. Thus. 1529. 1994 KILUSANG MAYO UNO LABOR CENTER.47 hectares. GARCIA. lease. AMARI's Memorandum. 105 Section 2. JESUS B. Rodriguez." 109 Section 79 of the Government Auditing Code. 110 The share of AMARI in the Freedom Islands is 77. and every subsequent purchaser of registered land taking a certificate of title for value and in good faith.. x x x. (4) Those whose object is outside the commerce of men. Miravite for movants. shall hold the same free from all encumbrances except those noted on said certificate and any of the following encumbrances which may be subsisting. Liens. Section 5. No. namely: First. depriving. which is 70 percent of the net usable area of 110. claims or rights arising or existing under the laws and Constitution of the Philippines which are not by law required to appear of record in the Registry of Deeds in order to be valid against subsequent purchasers or encumbrancers of record. and the PROVINCIAL BUS OPERATORS ASSOCIATION OF THE PHILIPPINES. KAPUNAN. Robert Anthony C. which requires public auction in the sale of government assets. withdrawing of an authority. 152 (1909). 104 Section 44 of PD No. vs. J. HON. 141 provides as follows: "Sec. Dizon v. 1529 states as follows: "Every registered owner receiving a certificate of title in pursuance of a decree of registration.129 hectares. Municipality of Victoria. 103 Republic v. Sison.2 (c) of the Amended JVA.R. COA Audit Circular No. 86-264 dated October 16. Brillantes and Jose Z. Potenciano A. 112 Article 1409 of the Civil Code provides as follows: "The following contracts are inexistent and void from the beginning: (1) Those whose cause. 10." Under Section 103 of PD No. Flores for petitioner.. Galsim for private respondent. et al." These COA Circulars implement Section 79 of the Government Auditing Code. JR. shall mean any of the methods authorized by this Act for the acquisition. 201 SCRA 148 (1991). COA Audit Circular No. 13 SCRA 705 (1965).34 hectares.

92-587. 1990 relative to the implementation of a fare range scheme for provincial bus services in the country. 20(a) of the same Act mandating that fares should be "just and reasonable. 94-3112. 1992. but also of Sec. The relevant antecedents are as follows: The instant petition for certiorari assails the constitutionality and validity of certain memoranda. (d) LTFRB Memorandum Circular No. he. The same is true with respect to the business of common carrier which holds such a peculiar relation to the public interest that there is superinduced upon it the right of public regulation when private properties are affected with public interest. as amended. The text of the memorandum order reads in full: One of the policy reforms and measures that is in line with the thrusts and the priorities set out in the Medium-Term Philippine Development Plan (MTPDP) 1987 — 1992) is the liberalization of regulations in the transport sector. When. among others. as amended. (a) authorize provincial bus and jeepney operators to increase or decrease the prescribed transportation fares without application therefor with the LTFRB and without hearing and approval thereof by said agency in violation of Sec. Based on several surveys and observations.S. have resulted in the introduction into our highways and On June 26. providing implementing guidelines on the DOTC Department Order No. 3 The offending provisions contained in the questioned issuances pointed out by petitioner. dated June 26. (b) DOTC Department Order No. public utility services are impressed with public interest and concern. to the extent of the interest he has thus created. 146. 90-395 to then LTFRB Chairman. in effect grants to the public an interest in that use. They are enterprises which specially cater to the needs of the public and conduce to their comfort and convenience. (c) DOTC Memorandum dated October 8. viz: (a) DOTC Memorandum Order 90-395. and (e) LTFRB Order dated March 24. otherwise known as the Public Service Act. laying down rules and procedures to implement Department Order No. bus companies are already charging passenger rates above and below the official fare declared by LTFRB 161 . in patent violation not only of Sec. violative of the Rules of Court which places upon each party the burden to prove his own affirmative allegations. dated March 30. 1994 in Case No. is indeed lamentable. they cease to be juris privati only. Fernando allowing provincial bus operators to charge passengers rates within a range of 15% above and 15% below the LTFRB official rate for a period of one (1) year.Public utilities are privately owned and operated businesses whose service are essential to the general public. many of which are right-hand driven. Oscar M. issued Memorandum Circular No. circulars and/or orders of the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) and the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board LTFRB) 2 which. 92-587. 1 An abdication of the licensing and regulatory government agencies of their functions as the instant petition seeks to show. and in derogation of LTFRB's duty to fix and determine just and reasonable fares by delegating that function to bus operators. 16(c) of CA 146. then Secretary of DOTC. and have exposed our consumers to the burden of spiraling costs of public transportation without hearing and due process. 16(c) of Commonwealth Act No. hence. likewise. one devotes his property to a use in which the public has an interest. thoroughfares thousands of old and smoke-belching buses. 1990. Along this line." It is. therefore. and (b) establish a presumption of public need in favor of applicants for certificates of public convenience (CPC) and place on the oppositor the burden of proving that there is no need for the proposed service. 92-587. As such. and must submit to the control by the public for the common good. the Government intends to move away gradually from regulatory policies and make progress towards greater reliance on free market forces. circulars and/or orders are sought to be nullified by the instant petition. The following memoranda. 1992. defining the policy framework on the regulation of transport services. Orbos. 92-009. Remedios A. Not only is it an unsound administrative policy but it is inimical to public trust and public interest as well.

hence. 2. implementation of the proposed fare range scheme on August 6 without complying with the requirements of the Public Service Act may not be legally feasible. In view thereof.S. Guidelines and procedures for the said scheme shall be prepared by LTFRB in coordination with the DOTC Planning Service. Orbos on July 24. It is in this context that some form of liberalization on public transport fares is to be tested on a pilot basis. Transport Operators shall be allowed to charge passengers within a range of fifteen percent (15%) above and fifteen percent (15%) below the LTFRB official rate for a period of one year. most likely public criticism against the DOTC and the LTFRB will be triggered by the untimely motu propioimplementation of the proposal by the mere expedient of publicizing the fare range scheme without calling a public hearing. The implementation of the said fare range scheme shall start on 6 August 1990. 90-395 dated 26 June 1990 which the LTFRB received on 19 July 1990. the LTFRB is hereby directed to immediately publicize a fare range scheme for all provincial bus routes in country (except those operating within Metro Manila).on many provincial routes. (b) there should be a publication and notice to concerned or affected parties in the territory affected. to wit: With reference to DOTC Memorandum Order No. which scheme many as early as during the Secretary's predecessor know through newspaper reports and columnists' comments to be Asian Development Bank and World Bank inspired. To allow bus operators in the country to charge fares fifteen (15%) above the present LTFRB fares in the wake of the devastation. directing the Board "to immediately publicize a fare range scheme for all provincial bus routes in the country (except those operating within Metro Manila)" that will allow operators "to charge passengers within a range of fifteen percent (15%) above and fifteen percent (15%) below the LTFRB official rate for a period of one year" the undersigned is respectfully adverting the Secretary's attention to the following for his consideration: 1. (c) a public hearing should be held for the fixing of the rates." Remedios A. More than inducing a reduction in bus fares by fifteen percent (15%) 162 . death and suffering caused by the July 16 earthquake will not be socially warranted and will be politically unsound. 1990. Section 16(c) of the Public Service Act prescribes the following for the fixing and determination of rates — (a) the rates to be approved should be proposed by public service operators. For compliance. Fernando submitted the following memorandum to Oscar M.) Finding the implementation of the fare range scheme "not legally feasible. 3. (Emphasis ours.

1990. 4 On March 30. On December 6. viz: AUTHORIZED FARES LUZON MIN. then Secretary of the Department of Transportation and Communications Pete Nicomedes Prado issued 163 .50 P0. 1990.065) centavos per kilometer for ordinary buses. On December 5. On December 14.405 AIRCON (PER KM. The application was opposed by the Philippine Consumers Foundation. The decrease was due to the drop in the expected price of diesel.415. REGULAR P1.37 STUDENT P1. In lieu of the said proposal.) LUZON P0. An across-the-board increase of eight and a half centavos (P0. SUCCEEDING KM. the DOTC with its agencies involved in public transportation can consider measures and reforms in the industry that will be socially uplifting. OF 5 KMS. the undersigned respectfully suggests that the implementation of the proposed fare range scheme this year be further studied and evaluated. particularly in Central Pangasinan. first class and premium class buses and a fifty-centavo (P0. Inc.28 VISAYAS/MINDANAO REGULAR P1.the implementation of the proposal will instead trigger an upward adjustment in bus fares by fifteen percent (15%) at a time when hundreds of thousands of people in Central and Northern Luzon.395 PREMIERE CLASS (PER KM. Bautista alleging that the proposed rates were exorbitant and unreasonable and that the application contained no allegation on the rate of return of the proposed increase in rates. 1992. public respondent LTFRB rendered a decision granting the fare rate increase in accordance with the following schedule of fares on a straight computation method. was sought. 1990.385 VISAYAS/ MINDANAO P0.60 P0. and Perla C.395 VISAYAS/ MINDANAO P0. (PBOAP) filed an application for fare rate increase.50) minimum per kilometer fare for aircon buses.15 P0.) LUZON P0.20 P0. private respondent PBOAP reduced its applied proposed fare to an across-the-board increase of six and a half (P0. and the Cagayan Valley are suffering from the devastation and havoc caused by the recent earthquake.375 STUDENT P1. private respondent Provincial Bus Operators Association of the Philippines. In view of the foregoing considerations. 4. Baguio City. Inc. with the said minimum-maximum fare range applying only to ordinary.285 FIRST CLASS (PER KM. Nueva Ecija.085) per kilometer for all types of provincial buses with a minimum-maximum fare range of fifteen (15%) percent over and below the proposed basic per kilometer fare rate. La Union.) P0. especially for the people in the areas devastated by the recent earthquake.

to achieve the objective of a viable. The requirements to grant a certificate to operate. The burden of proving that there is no need for a proposed service shall be with the oppositor(s). pursuant to the powers granted by laws to the DOTC. Following the Constitutional dictum against monopoly. The right of an operator to leave the industry is recognized as a business decision. The route measured capacity test or other similar tests of demand for vehicle/vessel fleet on any route shall be used only as a guide in weighing the merits of each franchise application and not as a limit to the services offered. efficient. air. regulating and implementing agency on transportation. Where there are limitations in facilities. no franchise holder shall be permitted to maintain a monopoly on any route.Department Order No. The full text of the said order is reproduced below in view of the importance of the provisions contained therein: WHEREAS. to inform the public and to minimize disruption of services. the transportation regulatory agencies under or attached to the DOTC have to harmonize their decisions and adopt a common philosophy and direction. Entry into and exit out of the industry. WHEREAS. Rate and Fare Setting. Operators of particular services may fix their own fares within a range 15% above and below the indicative or reference rate. the following policies and principles in the economic regulation of land. the use of the "prior operator" and the "priority of filing" rules shall be discontinued. financial capability. and water transportation services are hereby adopted: 1. 164 . NOW. designates the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) as the primary policy. planning. In the interest of providing efficient public transport services. except for the lowest class of passenger service (normally third class passenger transport) for which the government will fix indicative or reference fares. Executive Order No. and dependable transportation system. the use of demand management measures in conformity with market principles may be considered. Freight rates shall be freed gradually from government controls. A minimum of two franchise holders shall be permitted to operate on any route. and sufficient insurance cover to protect the riding public. 2. 92-587 defining the policy framework on the regulation of transport services. Passenger fares shall also be deregulated. or at airports and ports. THEREFORE. 125 as amended. WHEREAS. the government proposes to build on the successful liberalization measures pursued over the last five years and bring the transport sector nearer to a balanced longer term regulatory framework. subject only to the filing of appropriate notice and following a phaseout period. In determining public need. shall be: proof of Filipino citizenship. public need. the presumption of need for a service shall be deemed in favor of the applicant. such as congested road space in urban areas. or certificate of public convenience.

Only when the market situation warrants government intervention shall programs of this type be considered. xxx xxx xxx V. The Circular provides. Policy Guidelines on the Issuance of Certificate of Public Convenience. In the formulation of such rules. 92-587 that laid down deregulation and other liberalization policies for the transport sector. the detailed rules and procedures for the Implementation of the policies herein set forth. For the compliance of all concerned. or on specific routes. the LTFRB issued Memorandum Circular No. For unserved or single operator routes. the concerned agencies shall be guided by the most recent studies on the subjects. resplendent from the said memorandum is the statement of the DOTC Secretary that the adoption of the rules and procedures is a pre-requisite to the approval of the Economic Integration Loan from the World Bank. and the Inter-island Liner Shipping Rate Rationalization Study. 5 On February 17. the Maritime Industry Authority are hereby directed to submit to the Office of the Secretary.Where there is lack of effective competition for services. the Civil Aeronautics Board. 3. 92-587. the government shall not engage in special financing and incentive programs. issued a memorandum to the Acting Chairman of the LTFRB suggesting swift action on the adoption of rules and procedures to implement abovequoted Department Order No. Existing programs shall be phased out gradually. the government shall contract such services in the most advantageous terms to the public and the government. the Presidential Task Force on the Inter-island Shipping Industry. the Civil Aviation Master Plan. Rate and Fare Setting 165 . The issuance of a Certificate of Public Convenience is determined by public need. the following challenged portions: xxx xxx xxx IV. 1993. The presumption of public need for a service shall be deemed in favor of the applicant. The advisability of bidding out the services or using other kinds of incentives on such routes shall be studied by the government. Likewise. (Emphasis ours) On October 8. or for the transport of particular commodities. The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board. among others. Garcia. with comments and suggestions from the World Bank incorporated therein. while burden of proving that there is no need for the proposed service shall be the oppositor'(s). including direct subsidies for fleet acquisition and expansion. Jr. maximum mandatory freight rates or passenger fares shall be set temporarily by the government pending actions to increase the level of competition. public respondent Secretary of the Department of Transportation and Communications Jesus B. As a matter of policy. Special Incentives and Financing for Fleet Acquisition. following public bids for the services. 92-009 promulgating the guidelines for the implementation of DOTC Department Order No. within forty-five (45) days of this Order. such as the Provincial Road Passenger Transport Study. Attached to the said memorandum was a revised draft of the required rules and procedures covering (i) Entry Into and Exit Out of the Industry and (ii) Rate and Fare Setting. 1992.

The existing authorized fare range system of plus or minus 15 per cent for provincial buses and jeepneys shall be widened to 20% and -25% limit in 1994 with the authorized fare to be replaced by an indicative or reference rate as the basis for the expanded fare range. In their Comment filed by the Office of the Solicitor General. while not actually touching upon the issues raised by the petitioner. jeepneys. xxx xxx xxx (Emphasis ours). and the LTFRB 166 . is illegal for being violative of the Public Service Act and the Rules of Court. 2. 1994. prohibiting and preventing respondents from implementing the bus fare rate increase as well as the questioned orders and memorandum circulars. Second. Sometime in March. the LTFRB issued one of the assailed orders dismissing the petition for lack of merit. Petitioner KMU anchors its claim on two (2) grounds. 1994. 1994. This meant that provincial bus fares were rolled back to the levels duly authorized by the LTFRB prior to March 16. The Court. private respondent PBOAP. Fares shall not be provisionally authorized without public hearing. public respondents DOTC Secretary Jesus B. this Board after considering the arguments of the parties. announced a fare increase of twenty (20%) percent of the existing fares. subject to prior notice and public hearing. On March 24. invalid and illegal. the establishment of a presumption of public need in favor of an applicant for a proposed transport service without having to prove public necessity. A. and taxicabs. over and above the existing authorized fare without having to file a petition for the purpose. Garcia. availing itself of the deregulation policy of the DOTC allowing provincial bus operators to collect plus 20% and minus 25% of the prescribed fare without first having filed a petition for the purpose and without the benefit of a public hearing. It asserts that the petitioner has no legal standing to sue or has no real interest in the case at bench and in obtaining the reliefs prayed for. on June 20. The dispositive portion reads: PREMISES CONSIDERED. 6 1. This petition in this case was resolved with dispatch at the request of petitioner to enable it to immediately avail of the legal remedies or options it is entitled under existing laws.The control in pricing shall be liberalized to introduce price competition complementary with the quality of service. petitioner KMU filed a petition before the LTFRB opposing the upward adjustment of bus fares. On March 16. private respondent PBOAP. Fare systems for aircon buses are liberalized to cover first class and premier services. 1994. hereby Hence. Jr. is unconstitutional. In its Comment. A moratorium was likewise enforced on the issuance of franchises for the operation of buses. 1994. 1994. the instant petition for certiorari with an urgent prayer for issuance of a temporary restraining order. On the General Structure of Rates SO ORDERED. Said increased fares were to be made effective on March 16. the authority given by respondent LTFRB to provincial bus operators to set a fare range of plus or minus fifteen (15%) percent. later increased to plus twenty (20%) and minus twenty-five (-25%) percent. questions the wisdom and the manner by which the instant petition was filed. issued a temporary restraining order enjoining. DISMISSES FOR LACK OF MERIT the petition filed in the above-entitled case. First.

G. No. In the landmark Emergency Powers Cases. trains and jeepneys everyday. The requirement of locus standi inheres from the definition of judicial power." [Sanidad v. viz: . Commission on Elections). No. if we must. 368 (1949)].R.R. They are part of the millions of commuters who comprise the riding public. And this act of liberality is not without judicial precedent. The rule therefore requires that a party must show a personal stake in the outcome of the case or an injury to himself that can be redressed by a favorable decision so as to warrant an invocation of the court's jurisdiction and to justify the exercise of the court's remedial powers in his behalf. 7 we ruled that judicial power is the power to hear and decide causes pending between parties who have the right to sue in the courts of law and equity. One who is directly affected by and whose interest is immediate and substantial in the controversy has the standing to sue." Insofar as taxpayers' suits are concerned." (Tan v. G. technicalities of procedure. in the exercise of its discretion. not neglected nor ignored. et al. Petitioner KMU has the standing to sue. continues to be violated with the enforcement of the challenged memoranda. COMELEC. are directly affected by the burdensome cost of arbitrary increase in passenger fares. No. Corollary to this provision is the principle of locus standi of a party litigant. No. (Avelino vs. Angeles). They further claim that it is within DOTC and LTFRB's authority to set a fare range scheme and establish a presumption of public need in applications for certificates of public convenience.R. No. circulars and/or orders. As early as the Emergency Powers Cases. Section 1 of Article VIII of the Constitution provides: xxx xxx xxx Judicial power includes the duty of the courts of justice to settle actual controversies involving rights which are legally demandable and enforceable. who avail of the use of buses. 167 . Teofisto Guingona. G. Certainly. Dinglasan). A party's standing before this Court is a procedural technicality which it may. No. and G. G. Jr. brushing aside. the threshold issue of locus standi must be struck. this Court had declared that it "is not devoid of discretion as to whether or not it should be entertained. 680 [1972]) or that it "enjoys an open discretion to entertain the same or not. petitioner.. this court is ready to brush aside this barren procedural infirmity and recognize the legal standing of the petitioner in view of the transcendental importance of the issues raised. circulars and/or orders. Commissioner of Customs). At the outset. L-3056 (Barredo v. [G. has shown that it has a clear legal right that was violated and Assuming arguendo that petitioner is not possessed of the standing to sue.asseverate that the petitioner does not have the standing to maintain the instant suit. . Cuenco. Macapagal. L-2621).. We find the instant petition impressed with merit. 9 we ruled in the same lines and enumerated some of the cases where the same policy was adopted. Tesorero de Filipinas). Phipps. this Court had exercised its discretion and waived the requirement of proper party.. 43 SCRA 677. 8 In the case at bench. v. Inc. 73 SCRA 333 (1976)]. KMU members. L-2756 (Araneta v. L-3054 (Rodriguez v. this Court brushed aside this technicality because "the transcendental importance to the public of these cases demands that they be settled promptly and definitely. . their rights must be protected. 84 Phil. In Lamb v.R. whose members had suffered and continue to suffer grave and irreparable injury and damage from the implementation of the questioned memoranda.R. L-2044 (Araneta v. et al. L-3055 (Guerrero v. In the recent case of Kilosbayan.R. set aside in view of the importance of the issues raised. and to determine whether or not there has been a grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction on the part of any branch or instrumentality of the Government.

(c) the automatic appropriation for debt service in the General Appropriations Act (Guingona v. 991 and 1033 insofar as they proposed amendments to the Constitution and P. 6975. their undersecretaries. by district. No. Executive Secretary. 3836 insofar as it allows retirement gratuity and commutation of vacation and sick leave to Senators and Representatives and to elective officials of both Houses of Congress (Philippine Constitution Association. (d) R. v. and the Fiscal Incentives Review Board exempting the National Power Corporation from indirect tax and duties (Maceda v. Other cases where we have followed a liberal policy regarding locus standi include those attacking the validity or legality of (a) an order allowing the importation of rice in the light of the prohibition imposed by R.A. 15 SCRA 479 [1965]). (c) the bidding for the sale of the 3. 206 SCRA 290 [1992]). decisions. 199 SCRA 454 [1991]). Carague.D. Executive Secretary. hold. Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. and order (Basco v. (f) the orders of the Energy Regulatory Board of 5 and 6 December 1990 on the ground that the hearings conducted on the second provisional increase in oil prices did not allow the petitioner substantial cross-examination. Gimenez. establishing the Philippine National Police. Secretary of Finance. 1869 (the charter of the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation) on the ground that it is contrary to morals. Feliciano. No. (Carpio v. and (i) memorandum orders issued by a Mayor affecting the Chief of Police of Pasay City 168 . (h) resolutions of the Commission on Elections concerning the apportionment. rulings.A. rulings. ordinary taxpayers. (b) Executive Order No. public policy. No. members of Congress.A. (Maceda v. Inc. issued by President Corazon C. and even association of planters. (b) P. Board of Investments. Inc.179 square meters of land at Roppongi. Garcia. and resolutions of the Executive Secretary. Garcia v. and non-profit civic organizations were allowed to initiate and prosecute actions before this court to question the constitutionality or validity of laws. Japan (Laurel v. control. (d) the approval without hearing by the Board of Investments of the amended application of the Bataan Petrochemical Corporation to transfer the site of its plant from Bataan to Batangas and the validity of such transfer and the shift of feedstock from naphtha only to naphtha and/or liquefied petroleum gas (Garcia v. Tokyo. Commission on Elections. and (f) R. 197 SCRA 771 [1991]). 196 SCRA 221 [1991]. 284. and conduct the referendum-plebiscite on 16 October 1976 (Sanidad v. (e) the decisions.D. 1031 insofar as it directed the COMELEC to supervise. Commissioner of Internal Revenue. supra). Macaraig. Minato-ku. 177 SCRA 374 [1989]. 3452 (Iloilo Palay and Corn Planters Association. No. and assistant secretaries to hold other government offices or positions (Civil Liberties Union v. 208 SCRA 420 [1992]). acts. Commission on Elections.A. v.95 per liter of imported oil products (Garcia v. of the number of elective members of Sanggunians (De Guia vs. Commissioner of Customs. 7056 on the holding of desynchronized elections (Osmeña v.. 187 SCRA 797 [1990]). Executive Secretary. orders. (e) P. Aquino on 25 July 1987. Commission on Elections. No. Nos. 199 SCRA 750 [1991]). 194 SCRA 317 [1991]). Among such cases were those assailing the constitutionality of (a) R.D. 13 SCRA 377 [1965].xxx xxx xxx In line with the liberal policy of this Court on locus standi. Board of Investments. or orders of various government agencies or instrumentalities. which allowed members of the cabinet. Energy Regulatory Board. (g) Executive Order No. 478 which levied a special duty of P0. 191 SCRA 288 [1990]). 197 SCRA 52 [1991]). No. 211 SCRA 219 [1992]).

subject to the limitations and exceptions mentioned and saving provisions to the contrary: xxx xxx xxx (c) To fix and determine individual or joint rates. the PSC and 169 . As subjects for governmental regulation multiply. That the Commission may. upon proper notice and hearing in accordance with the rules and provisions of this Act. the existing regulatory body today. With this authority. Proceedings of the Commission. upon notice and hearing. However. and petitioner alleging abuse of discretion and violation of the Constitution by respondent. On the fare range scheme. reasonable fares. the LTFRB. 101 SCRA 662 [1980]). Hence. may implement broad policies laid down in a statute by "filling in" the details which the Legislature may neither have time or competence to provide. despite its unequivocal ruling that the petitioners therein had no personality to file the petition. 1987. resolved nevertheless to pass upon the issues raised because of the far-reaching implications of the petition. charges. relative to the operation of public land transportation services provided by motorized vehicles. prescribe. a standing in law. approve rates proposed by public services provisionally and without necessity of any hearing." we brushed aside the procedural infirmity "considering the importance of the issue involved." Now on the merits of the case. upon publication and notice to the concerns operating in the territory affected: Provided. and other special rates which shall be imposed. Inc. Given the task of determining sensitive and delicate matters as route-fixing and rate-making for the transport sector. mileage kilometrage. is likewise vested with the same under Executive Order No. approve and periodically review and adjust. so does the difficulty of administering the laws. reads: Sec. Commission on Elections (62 SCRA 275 [1975]). although we declared that De Guia "does not appear to have locus standi. xxx xxx xxx Under the foregoing provision. the Legislature delegated to the defunct Public Service Commission the power of fixing the rates of public services. specialization even in legislation has become necessary. In the 1975 case of Aquino v. but it shall call a hearing thereon within thirty days thereafter. classifications. (Emphasis ours). We did no less in De Guia v." Such delegation of legislative power to an administrative agency is permitted in order to adapt to the increasing complexity of modern life. nowhere under the aforesaid provisions of law are the regulatory bodies. 202 dated June 19. concerning as it does the political exercise of qualified voters affected by the apportionment.(Pasay Law and Conscience Union. Respondent LTFRB. in its discretion. tolls. the responsible regulatory body is entrusted with the power of subordinate legislation. as well as commutation. observed. rates and other related charges. as amended. Cuneta. the net profits of said private business shall be considered in relation with the public service of such operator for the purpose of fixing the rates. Section 16(c) of the Public Service Act. a personal or substantial interest. That in case the public service equipment of an operator is used principally or secondarily for the promotion of a private business. COMELEC (Supra) where. — The Commission shall have power. Section 5(c) of the said executive order authorizes LTFRB "to determine. and followed thereafter by any public service: Provided. further. an administrative body and in this case. or schedules thereof. v. 16. this Court.

12 where respondent Philippine Railway Co. The Legislature has delegated to the Public Service Commission the power of fixing the rates of public services. it would be to its advantage to do so. 13(Emphasis ours). a transport operator. whenever it pleases them or whenever they deem it "necessary" to do so. otherwise it must disapprove them. whenever it deems it necessary to do so in order to meet competition or whenever in its opinion it would be to its advantage. is enough to show that it is untenable. authorized to delegate that power to a common carrier. and the Public Service Commission itself cannot authorize a public service to enforce new rates without the prior approval of said rates by the commission. In the present case the Philippine Railway Co. or other public service. the power of altering its freight rates whenever it should find it necessary to do so in order to meet the competition of road trucks and autobuses. and any change in such rates must be authorized or approved by the Public Service Commission after they have been shown to be just and reasonable. Philippine Railway Co. The rates of public services like the Philippine Railway Co. every day. or to change its freight rates at will. propose new rates. this will unduly prejudice a commuter who will be made to pay a fare that has been 170 . Potestas delegata non delegari potest.LTFRB alike. or to regard its present rates as maximum rates. the Public Service Commission was not authorized by law to delegate to the Philippine Railway Co. One veritable consequence of the deregulation of transport fares is a compounded fare. In the case at bench.. Clearly. is illegal and invalid as it is tantamount to an undue delegation of legislative authority. The commission must approve new rates when they are submitted to it. the authority given by the LTFRB to the provincial bus operators to set a fare range over and above the authorized existing fare. 10 A further delegation of such power would indeed constitute a negation of the duty in violation of the trust reposed in the delegate mandated to discharge it directly. but it has not authorized the Public Service Commission to delegate that power to a common carrier or other public service. 31827. if the evidence shows them to be just and reasonable. this Court categorically declared that: In our opinion. but it cannot lawfully make said new rates effective without the approval of the Public Service Commission. v. What has been delegated cannot be delegated. because it does not know what those rates will be. the commission cannot determine in advance whether or not the new rates of the Philippine Railway Co. will be just and reasonable. In Panay Autobus Co. If transport operators will be authorized to impose and collect an additional amount equivalent to 20% over and above the authorized fare over a period of time. as the Philippine Railway Co. This doctrine is based on the ethical principle that such a delegated power constitutes not only a right but a duty to be performed by the delegate through the instrumentality of his own judgment and not through the intervening mind of another. was granted by the Public Service Commission the authority to change its freight rates at will. of course. The mere recital of the language of the application of the Philippine Railway Co. did in case No. The public service may. every month or every year. 11 The policy of allowing the provincial bus operators to change and increase their fares at will would result not only to a chaotic situation but to an anarchic state of affairs. It may change them every day or every hour. This would leave the riding public at the mercy of transport operators who may increase fares every hour. in effect asked for permission to change its freight rates at will. Such a procedure would create a most unsatisfactory state of affairs and largely defeat the purposes of the public service law. and to fix lower rates whenever in the opinion of the Philippine Railway Co. have been approved or fixed by the Public Service Commission.

At the same time.05) centavo increase per kilometer in 1994. the base or reference for computation would have to be P0.05 = 0. 14 to our mind.29). the situation translates into the following: Year** LTFRB authorized Fare Range Fare to be rate*** collected per kilometer 1990 P0.37 centavos) is equivalent to P0.05 centavos). Supposing the LTFRB grants another five (P0.47 authorized LTFRB rate plus 20% of P0. and (iii) the applicant must prove that the operation of the public service proposed and the authorization to do business will 171 . to wit: (i) the applicant must be a citizen of the Philippines. an interested party at that.37 centavo per kilometer authorized fare plus P0.78 20% (P0. Pursuant to Section 16(a) of the Public Service Act. The purpose of a hearing is precisely to determine what a just and reasonable rate is. Aside from fare increase applied for. The people. they were allowed to impose and collect a fare range of plus or minus 15% over the authorized rate. A certificate of public convenience (CPC) is an authorization granted by the LTFRB for the operation of land transportation services for public use as required by law.47 centavos (which is P0. to determine what the rate should be.05 = 0. have to be taken into consideration before a balance could be achieved. Hence.56 (that is. If bus operators will exercise their authority to impose an additional 20% over and above the authorized fare. Given the complexity of the nature of the function of rate-fixing and its far-reaching effects on millions of commuters. Neither should the requisite notice and hearing be done away with. Thus P0. On the presumption of public need.42 centavos. transport operators shall enjoy a bigger chunk of the pie.56 + 0. then. On their part. rate making or rate fixing is not an easy task.computed in a manner similar to those of compounded bank interest rates. Mathematically. To do away with such a procedure and allow just one party. represented by reputable oppositors.12) P0.05 = 0. in fact. A rate. Picture this situation. a rate which is too high becomes discriminatory. therefore. A rate should not be confiscatory as would place an operator in a situation where he will continue to operate at a loss. commuters will be continuously subjected. or a corporation or co-partnership. then the fare to be collected shall amount to P0. the allowed rate in 1990.47 which is P0. the rate should enable public utilities to generate revenues sufficient to cover operational costs and provide reasonable return on the investments.37) centavo per kilometer fare for ordinary buses. It is contrary to public interest. deserve to be given full opportunity to be heard in their opposition to any fare increase. Several factors. already mirrors an orderly and satisfactory arrangement for all parties involved. In effect.94 Moreover.42 + 0.73 + 0.47 20% (P0. (ii) the applicant must be financially capable of undertaking the proposed service and meeting the responsibilities incident to its operation. P0. government must not relinquish this important function in favor of those who would benefit and profit from the industry. will undermine the right of the other parties to due process. they can still collect an additional amount by virtue of the authorized fare range.42 + P0.42 1994 P0.56 1998 P0. 15 Discarding such procedural and constitutional right is certainly inimical to our fundamental law and to public interest.73 2002 P0. the following requirements must be met before a CPC may be granted. not only to a double fare adjustment but to a compounding fare as well.61 20% (P0. On the other hand. 1990.05 centavos (which is 15% of P0.05) P0. The present administrative procedure. must be reasonable and fair and must be affordable to the end user who will utilize the services.09) P0. association or joint-stock company constituted and organized under the laws of the Philippines. as amended. at least 60 per centum of its stock or paid-up capital must belong entirely to citizens of the Philippines. the LTFRB authorized provincial bus operators to collect a thirty-seven (P0.16) P0. It is a delicate and sensitive government function that requires dexterity of judgment and sound discretion with the settled goal of arriving at a just and reasonable rate acceptable to both the public utility and the public.37 15% (P0. On December 14.

17 Basic convenience is the primary consideration for which a CPC is issued. It allows the party who initiates the proceedings to prove. by mere application. at all times. the former must prevail. While we recognize the authority of the DOTC and the LTFRB to issue administrative orders to regulate the transport sector. as a fact. and that fact alone must be consistently borne in mind. By its terms. the policy guideline states that the presumption of public need for a public service shall be deemed in favor of the applicant. Moreover. in a public hearing conducted for that purpose. The presumption of public need for a service shall be deemed in favor of the applicant. is to look out for. The above-quoted provision is entirely incompatible and inconsistent with Section 16(c)(iii) of the Public Service Act which requires that before a CPC will be issued. among other things. Part IV. The object and purpose of such procedure. LTFRB Memorandum Circular No. statistics and such other means necessary. Therefore. we find that they committed grave abuse of discretion in issuing DOTC Department Order No. It is understood that there must be proper notice and hearing before the PSC can exercise its power to issue a CPC. empirical data. provides for yet incongruous and contradictory policy guideline on the issuance of a CPC. (Emphasis ours). Otherwise stated. On the contrary. an applicant must. while it may be ideal in certain situations. 92-587 defining the policy framework on the regulation of transport services and LTFRB Memorandum Circular No. While adopting in toto the foregoing requisites for the issuance of a CPC. The guidelines states: The issuance of a Certificate of Public Convenience is determined by public need. that is. Advocacy of liberalized franchising and regulatory process is tantamount to an abdication by the government of its inherent right to exercise police power. 18 And all this will be possible only if a public hearing were conducted for that purpose. 92-009 promulgating the implementing guidelines on DOTC Department Order No. practice and procedure. 19 Deregulation. public convenience and necessity exists when the proposed facility or service meets a reasonable want of the public and supply a need which the existing facilities do not adequately supply. existing operators in subject routes must be given an opportunity to offer proof and oppose the application. the establishment of public need in favor of an applicant reverses well-settled and institutionalized judicial. be required to prove his capacity and capability to furnish the service which he has undertaken to render. Such usurpation of this Court's authority cannot be countenanced as only this Court is mandated by law to promulgate rules concerning pleading. and protect. the applicant must prove by proper notice and hearing that the operation of the public service proposed will promote public interest in a proper and suitable manner. real and/or testimonial. the said administrative issuances being 172 . the right of government to regulate public utilities for protection of the public and the utilities themselves. quasijudicial and administrative procedures. the offending provisions of the LTFRB memorandum circular in question would in effect amend the Rules of Court by adding another disputable presumption in the enumeration of 37 presumptions under Rule 131. 92-587. that the proposed operation is for the convenience of the public. may not be ideal at all in our country given the present circumstances. Section 5 of the Rules of Court. his affirmative allegations. while the burden of proving that there is no need for the proposed service shall be the oppositor's. The existence or non-existence of public convenience and necessity is therefore a question of fact that must be established by evidence. the interests of both the public and the existing transport operators. it shall find. Verily. In case of conflict between a statute and an administrative order. public convenience or necessity generally means something fitting or suited to the public need. 16 As one of the basic requirements for the grant of a CPC. the power of a regulatory body to issue a CPC is founded on the condition that after full-dress hearing and investigation. 92-009.promote the public interest in a proper and suitable manner. Also.

and (b) creating a presumption of public need for a service in favor of the applicant for a certificate of public convenience and placing the burden of proving that there is no need for the proposed service to the oppositor. LTFRB Memorandum Circular No.amendatory and violative of the Public Service Act and the Rules of Court. Bellosillo and Quiason. On September 24. They were the Coastwise Rate Commission under Act No." The same effected a major revamp of the executive department. The Temporary Restraining Order issued on June 20. 92-587. the Public Service Commission (PSC) was abolished and replaced by three (3) specialized regulatory boards. 1992. 1902. SO ORDERED. 520 passed by the Philippine Commission on November 17. 1011 was issued abolishing the Board of Transportation and the Bureau of Land Transportation. the instant petition is hereby GRANTED and the challenged administrative issuances and orders. 3108 dated March 19. 1994 is hereby MADE PERMANENT insofar as it enjoined the bus fare rate increase granted under the provisions of the aforementioned administrative circulars. the same being merely internal communications between administrative officers. 1972. and the Public Utility Commission under Act No. 1985. and the order dated March 24. 1994 without the benefit of a petition and a public hearing is null and void and of no force and effect. Their powers and functions were merged into the Land Transportation Commission (LTC). After the Americans introduced public utility regulation at the turn of the century. 1913. namely: DOTC Department Order No. #Footnotes 1 Pantranco v. memoranda and/or orders declared invalid. 1779 dated October 12. Said law created a regulatory and franchising body known as the Public Service Commission (PSC). as amended or the Public Service Act. Padilla. 1907. This was Commonwealth Act No. 1. the National Assembly passed a more comprehensive public utility law. Part X of P. No pronouncement as to costs. we rule that the twenty (20%) per centum fare increase imposed by respondent PBOAP on March 16. 70 Phil. Executive Order No. JJ. 90-395 and DOTC Memorandum dated October 8. 1 was issued and declared "part of the law of the land. These were the Board of Transportation. No grave abuse of discretion however was committed in the issuance of DOTC Memorandum Order No. the Board of Communications.. 1994 issued by respondent LTFRB are hereby DECLARED contrary to law and invalid insofar as they affect provisions therein (a) delegating to provincial bus and jeepney operators the authority to increase or decrease the duly prescribed transportation fares. 92-009. The Board of Transportation (BOT) lasted for thirteen (13) years. Jr. 221. Presidential Decree No. 2307 dated December 19. 1923. the Board of Rate Regulation under Act No.D. 173 . and the Board of Power and Waterworks. various regulatory bodies were created. No. The Commission (PSC) existed for thirty-six (36) years from 1936 up to 1972. 2 The 20th century ushered in the birth and growth of public utility regulation in the country. in view of the foregoing. Under Article III. WHEREFORE. Public Service Commission. 146. Davide.. On March 20. During the Commonwealth period. the Board of Public Utility Commission under Act No. concur. as amended. Consequently.

Philippine Political Law. *** Assume further a constant P0. p. 14 Steps in the Filing of Petition for Rate Increase: A Petition For Adjustment of Rate (either for increase or reduction) may be filed only by a grantee of a CPC. 12 57 Phil. 180.05 centavo increase in fare every four (4) years. wage hikes or similar factors would threaten the survival and viability of their operations. is the existing franchising and regulatory body for overland transportation today. 113375. Thus in the case of public utilities engaged in transportation. 2d 343. 180 U. 872 [1933]. Ed. 2197 [1975]. 97 U. 4. Vera. 45 L.. After the petition is docketed. Filing of formal Petition for Rate Increase. the same to be published in a newspaper of general circulation in the area. 2. Seldin. 24 L. p. when franchise/CPC grantees or existing public utility operators foresee that the new oil price increase. 947 [1978]. 1987 and 125-A dated April 13. 1987 which reorganized the Department of Transportation and Communications. 9 G. LTC was abolished by Executive Order Nos. 59. p. 2d 681 [1967]. 4. at pp. 11 Cruz. Rollo. 65 Phil. 31 N. the present schedule of rates. On June 19. p.S. Guzman v. 7 22 Phil. 10 United States v. 90-4794. successor of LTC. 4 Decision of LTFRB in Case No. Marrero. Orlando Fla.Ct. Ed. Rollo. Therefore. 2d 326 [1948]. May 5. ** Assume a four-year interval in fare adjustment as a constant. energy supply (electricity) and others. 5 Rollo. 6 Order of LTFRB. Ct. No. 95 S. 45 L. 13 Id. 55. McMicken v.W. a date is set for hearing for which Notice of Hearing is issued. p. 327. 1.S. 498-499. 1987. United States. Barrias. particularly upwards adjustments of rates: 1. 125 dated January 30. telecommunications. 204. 8 Warth v. Silver Star Citizens' Committee v. 84. Ed.R. 194 So. 878-879.S. 1991 Edition. 72 S.D. Rules of Court. 490. People v. 11 Phil. 456 [1912]. Rule 131.Two (2) years later. they may then institute a petition for increase of rates. 3 Sec. 174 . 202. 436. 1994. 422 U. The LTFRB. the following steps are usually undertaken in seeking. 21 S. In Re Kenison's Guardianship. — This petition alleges therein among others. projections/studies showing possible losses from oil price or wage hikes under the old or existing rates and possible margin of profit (which should be within the 12% allowable limit) under the new or revised rates. 56. 81. 330 [1908]. 293 [1901]. 113 [1937]. 42. the reasons why the same is no longer economically viable and the revised schedule of rates it proposes to charge. Attached to said Petition for financial statements. p. the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) was created by Executive Order No.

19 Article VIII. Orlanes. 5th Edition. The parties affected by the application are required to be furnished copies of the petition and the Notice of Hearing usually by registered mail with return card. 38 O. 274 [1931]. 42 Phil. Enriquez. Copies of these audit reports are furnished the petitioners and oppositors may submit their exceptions or objections thereto. Pasay Transportation Co. p. 52 Phil. 18 Manila Electric Co.3. 17 Batangas Transportation Co. 2004 175 . COA audit report is compared with that of the regulatory body. a representative number for examination purposes would do. 825 [1933]. Corpus. v. After the hearings. 16 Black's Law Dictionary. 56 Phil.G. Pampanga Bus Co. v. Please see also Raymundo Transportation v. Then hearings are conducted. the parties may agree to submit their respective Position Papers in lieu of oral testimonies. 15 Ynchausti Steamship Co. v. 621. 6. if the applicants/petitioners are numerous. The Technical Staff of the regulatory body concerned evaluates the documentary evidence attached to the petition to determine whether there is warrant to the request for rate revision. 5. 38 O. 374. 1105.. 1987 Constitution.R. Then the Commission on Audit (COA) is requested by the regulatory body to conduct an audit and examination of the books of accounts and other pertinent financial records of the public utility operator seeking the rate revision. 2069. 4. No. 57 Phil. the corresponding resolution is issued.G. To obviate protracted hearings. Section 6. and the period of operation covered usually ranges from six (6) months to one (1) year. The Solicitor General is also separately notified since he is the counsel for the Government. Public Utility Commissioner. 631 [1922]. Perez. Oppositors are also allowed to rebut such evidence-in-chief with their own witnesses and documents. The petitioners may present accountants or such rate experts to explain their plea for rate revision. 131719 May 25. 455 [1928]. v. SECOND DIVISION G. Dela Rosa v.

. (ARCO-Phil. 1995. the Executive Secretary of the President of the Philippines. respondents. even foreign 176 . the POEA Administrator and the OWWA Administrator. INC. THE SECRETARY OF LABOR AND EMPLOYMENT. paragraph (g). Dragon International Manpower Services Corporation. Co. Inc. this has far reaching effects not only to survival of the overseas manpower supply industry and the active participating recruitment agencies. DECISION CALLEJO. COURT OF APPEALS and ASIAN RECRUITMENT COUNCIL PHILIPPINE CHAPTER (ARCO-PHIL. 1996 issue of the Manila Bulletin. Inc. 1995.. granting the plea of the petitioners therein for a writ of preliminary injunction and of the writ of preliminary injunction issued by the trial court on August 24. Act No. Ltd. a petition for declaratory relief under Rule 63 of the Rules of Court with the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City to declare as unconstitutional Section 2. through the Office of the Solicitor General. alleged that Rep. 1995 in Civil Case No. THE HON. As of now. the member recruitment agencies of the petitioner will suffer grave or irreparable damage or injury. the Asian Recruitment Council Philippine Chapter. Section 7 on penalties for illegal recruitment. viz: Viewed in the light of the foregoing discussions.. on July 17. In a supplement to its petition. Dahlzhen International Services. to the poor and the needy who are in dire need of income-generating jobs which can only be obtained from abroad. SR. the Secretary of Justice. the Secretary of Foreign Affairs.: In this petition for review on certiorari. representing its members: Worldcare Services Internationale. petitioners. The Omnibus Rules and Regulations Implementing the Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipino Act of 1995 was. otherwise known as the Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipinos Act of 1995. ADMINISTRATOR.. Lakas Tao Contract Services. with a plea for the issuance of a temporary restraining order and/or writ of preliminary injunction enjoining the respondents therein from enforcing the assailed provisions of the law. 38815 affirming the Order2 of the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City dated August 21. Interworld Placement Center. and POEA ADMINISTRATOR. AND THE SECRETARY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS. assail the Decision1 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. With the effectivity of RA 8042. It prayed that the court issue a temporary restraining order to enjoin the enforcement of Section 6.R. thereafter.THE EXECUTIVE SECRETARY. and Sections 9 and 10 of the law. a great majority of the duly licensed recruitment agencies have stopped or suspended their operations for fear of being prosecuted under the provisions of a law that are unjust and unconstitutional. the country’s economy which has survived mainly due to the dollar remittances of the overseas workers but more importantly. published in the April 7. Steadfast International Recruitment Corporation. paragraphs (a) to (j). J. Indeed.) filed. vs. paragraphs (a) and (b). However.. by way of a restraining order otherwise. Q-9524401. 1995. and SSC Multiservices. took effect on July 15.. This Honorable Court may take judicial notice of the fact that processing of deployment papers of overseas workers for the past weeks have come to a standstill at the POEA and this has affected thousands of workers everyday just because of the enactment of RA 8042. 8042 was self-executory and that no implementing rules were needed. even before the law took effect. OWWA PUNO. ARL Manpower Services. and Section 9 on venue of criminal actions for illegal recruitments. Inc. (l) and (m). the ARCO-Phil. paragraphs (a) to (m) on illegal recruitment. there appears to be urgent an imperative need for this Honorable Court to maintain the status quo by enjoining the implementation or effectivity of the questioned provisions of RA 8042. Verdant Manpower Mobilization Corporation. Inc. Inc. The loss or injury that the recruitment agencies will suffer will then be immeasurable and irreparable. Section 6. Brent Overseas Personnel.. Section 7. The Antecedents Republic Act No. 8042. SP No. Inc. the Secretary of Labor and Employment.).. THE SECRETARY OF JUSTICE.

Appropriate incentives may be extended to them. in any manner. THE GOVERNMENT SHALL DEPLOY AND/OR ALLOW THE DEPLOYMENT ONLY OF SKILLED FILIPINO WORKERS. After the petitioners filed their comment on the petition. 177 . otherwise known as the Labor Code of the Philippines: Provided. or procuring workers and includes referring. and Sections 11 and 40 of Rep.3 On August 1. the ARCOPhil. information or document or commit any act of misrepresentation for the purpose of securing a license or authority under the Labor Code. the trial court issued a temporary restraining order effective for a period of only twenty (20) days therefrom. 442. contract services. utilizing. offers or promises for a fee employment abroad to two or more persons shall be deemed so engaged. Section 6 subsection (k) and paragraphs 15 and 16 thereof. That any such nonlicensee or non-holder who.employers have already reduced their manpower requirements from the Philippines due to their knowledge that RA 8042 prejudiced and adversely affected the local recruitment agencies.) Nonetheless. PURSUANT TO THIS AND AS SOON AS PRACTICABLE. the deployment of Filipino overseas workers. (d) To induce or attempt to induce a worker already employed to quit his employment in order to offer him another unless the transfer is designed to liberate a worker from oppressive terms and conditions of employment. 2nd par. Act No. (b) To furnish or publish any false notice or information or document in relation to recruitment or employment. the amendments consisting in the inclusion in the caption thereof eleven (11) other corporations which it alleged were its members and which it represented in the suit. and a plea for a temporary restraining order enjoining the respondents from enforcing Section 6 subsection (i). The respondent ARCO-Phil. whether for profit or not. and Section 10 paragraphs (1) and (2). 2 subsection (i. hiring. whether committed by any person. licensee or holder of authority: (a) To charge or accept directly or indirectly any amount greater than that specified in the schedule of allowable fees prescribed by the Secretary of Labor and Employment. enlisting. include the following acts. whether a non-licensee. Section 8. Definition. Section 7(a) to (b). transporting. 6. ILLEGAL RECRUITMENT SEC. non-holder. likewise. 8042. … II. filed an amended petition. illegal recruitment shall mean any act of canvassing. (c) To give any false notice. by local service contractors and manning agents employing them shall be encourages (sic). when undertaken by a non-licensee or non-holder of authority contemplated under Article 13(f) of Presidential Decree No. Section 10. 1995. whether land-based or sea-based. assailed Section 2(g) and (i). It shall. contracting. as amended. Section 6 subsection (a) to (m). testimony. paragraphs 1 and 2. promising or advertising for employment abroad. – For purposes of this Act. or to make a worker pay any amount greater than that actually received by him as a loan or advance. quoted as follows: (g) THE STATE RECOGNIZES THAT THE ULTIMATE PROTECTION TO ALL MIGRANT WORKERS IS THE POSSESSION OF SKILLS.4 Sec.

in cases where the deployment does not actually take place without the worker’s fault. departures and such other matters or information as may be required by the Secretary of Labor and Employment.00) nor more than five hundred thousand pesos (P500. In case of juridical persons.00) nor more than one million pesos (P1. (i) To substitute or alter to the prejudice of the worker. management or direction of their business shall be liable. (k) To withhold or deny travel documents from applicant workers before departure for monetary or financial considerations other than those authorized under the Labor Code and its implementing rules and regulations. Illegal recruitment is deemed committed by a syndicate if carried out by a group of three (3) or more persons conspiring or confederating with one another. the officers having control. … SEC.000.00) shall be imposed if illegal recruitment constitutes economic sabotage as defined herein. (m) Failure to reimburse expenses incurred by the worker in connection with his documentation and processing for purposes of deployment. and (f) To engage in the recruitment or placement of workers in jobs harmful to public health or morality or to the dignity of the Republic of the Philippines. It is deemed committed in large scale if committed against three (3) or more persons individually or as a group.000. – (j) For an officer or agent of a recruitment or placement agency to become an officer or member of the Board of any corporation engaged in travel agency or to be engaged directly or indirectly in the management of a travel agency. (a) Any person found guilty of illegal recruitment shall suffer the penalty of imprisonment of not less than six (6) years and one (1) day but not more than twelve (12) years and a fine of not less than two hundred thousand pesos (P200.000. (b) The penalty of life imprisonment and a fine of not less than five hundred thousand pesos (P500. (g) To obstruct or attempt to obstruct inspection by the Secretary of Labor and Employment or by his duly authorized representative. accomplices and accessories. The persons criminally liable for the above offenses are the principals. 7. Illegal recruitment when committed by a syndicate or in large scale shall be considered an offense involving economic sabotage. placement vacancies.000. separation from jobs.000.(e) To influence or attempt to influence any person or entity not to employ any worker who has not applied for employment through his agency. remittance of foreign exchange earnings. (h) To fail to submit reports on the status of employment. (l) Failure to actually deploy without valid reason as determined by the Department of Labor and Employment. 178 .00). Penalties. employment contracts approved and verified by the Department of Labor and Employment from the time of actual signing thereof by the parties up to and including the period of the expiration of the same without the approval of the Department of Labor and Employment.

as such. It was pointed out that both skilled and unskilled workers are subjected to abuses by foreign employers.8 As the law encouraged the deployment of skilled Filipino workers. as well as Article II. Sections 17 and 3(3) of the Constitution. – Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary. If the preliminary investigation is conducted by a judge and a prima facie case is found to exist. within ninety (90) calendar days after the filing of the complaint. The respondent stressed that unskilled workers also have the right to seek employment abroad. The penalties provided in the immediate preceding paragraph shall be imposed upon them. The liability of the principal/employer and the recruitment/placement agency for any and all claims under this section shall be joint and several. Where the preliminary investigation is conducted by a prosecution officer and a prima facie case is established.Provided. Money Claims. 1 & 2. Prohibition on Officials and Employees. as provided by law. 11. violated the equal protection clause. to engage. directly or indirectly. The respondent averred that the aforequoted provisions of Rep. Section 126 and Article XV. while unskilled workers are merely prone to such abuses. Section 6(g) and (i) discriminated against unskilled workers and their families and. It cannot be argued that skilled workers are immune from abuses by employers. or the Department of Foreign Affairs. 179 . the corporate officers and directors and partners as the case may be. This provision shall be incorporated in the contract for overseas employment and shall be a condition precedent for its approval. … SEC. – The preliminary investigations of cases under this Act shall be terminated within a period of thirty (30) calendar days from the date of their filing. That the maximum penalty shall be imposed if the person illegally recruited is less than eighteen (18) years of age or committed by a non-licensee or nonholder of authority. or other government agencies involved in the implementation of this Act. the Labor Arbiters of the National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC) shall have the original and exclusive jurisdiction to hear and decide. – It shall be unlawful for any official or employee of the Department of Labor and Employment. Furthermore. only overseas skilled workers are granted rights. 8042 violate Section 1. the corresponding information shall be filed in court within twenty-four (24) hours from the termination of the investigation. 8. moral. in the business of recruiting migrant workers as defined in this Act. however. or the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA). shall themselves be jointly and solidarily liable with the corporation or partnership for the aforesaid claims and damages. According to the respondent. 5 According to the respondent. the right of unskilled workers to due process is violated because they are prevented from finding employment and earning a living abroad. Article III of the Constitution. Mandatory Periods for Resolution of Illegal Recruitment Cases. exemplary and other forms of damages. The performance bond to be filed by the recruitment/placement agency. Act No. or their relatives within the fourth civil degree of consanguinity or affinity. Sec. the claims arising out of an employer-employee relationship or by virtue of any law or contract involving Filipino workers for overseas deployment including claims for actual. the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA). If the recruitment/placement agency is a juridical being. pars. (underscoring supplied) … Sec. shall be answerable for all money claims or damages that may be awarded to the workers. 10. the corresponding information shall be filed by the proper prosecution officer within forty-eight (48) hours from the date of receipt of the records of the case.

That the aforestated provisions shall also apply to those criminal actions that have already been filed in court at the time of the effectivity of this Act. the grant of incentives to service contractors and manning agencies to the exclusion of all other licensed and authorized recruiters is an invalid classification. Act No. Money Claims. According to the respondent. they should not be liable. employees and their relatives are presumed guilty of illegal recruitment involving economic sabotage upon such finding that they committed any of the said prohibited acts. for such corporate acts. It contended that while the Labor Code distinguished between recruiters who are holders of licenses and non-holders thereof in the imposition of penalties. The respondent asserted that the following provisions of the law are unconstitutional: SEC. This would thereby shift on local licensed and authorized recruiters the burden of proving the defense of foreign employers. Since recruitment agencies usually operate with a manpower of more than three persons. 8042 does not make any distinction. Furthermore. however. Furthermore. and could deprive licensed and registered recruiters of their right to due process. … SEC. lest their officers and/or employees be charged with large scale illegal recruitment or economic sabotage and sentenced to life imprisonment. 8042 is life imprisonment. alleged that Section 6. 9. subsections (a) to (m) is unconstitutional because licensed and authorized recruitment agencies are placed on equal footing with illegal recruiters. is a bill of attainder and a violation of the right of the said corporate officers and employees to due process. discourages the business of licensed and registered recruitment agencies. The penalties in Section 7(a) and (b) being based on an invalid classification are. which provides for the joint and several liability of the officers and employees.the prohibition of the deployment of unskilled workers abroad would only encourage fly-by-night illegal recruiters. thereafter. being disproportionate to the prohibited acts. likewise. Section 10. therefore. paragraph (1) within which a labor arbiter should decide a money claim is relatively short. such penalties are violative of Section 19(1)." It is understandable for the law to prohibit illegal recruiters. paragraph 2 of the law. – Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary.9 It was also pointed out that the penalty for officers/officials/employees of recruitment agencies who are found guilty of economic sabotage or large-scale illegal recruitment under Rep. jointly and severally. This is because the provisions presume that a licensed and registered recruitment agency is guilty of illegal recruitment involving economic sabotage. 9 and 10. the penalty imposed by law. the Labor Arbiters of the National Labor 180 . Licensed and authorized recruiters are thus deprived of their right to property and due process and to the "equality of the person. The respondent also posited that Section 6(m) and paragraphs (15) and (16). Venue. Article III of the Constitution. repugnant to the equal protection clause. such agencies are forced to shut down. The respondent further argued that the 90-day period in Section 10. Thus. Act No. Rep. 10. besides being excessive. upon a finding that it committed any of the prohibited acts under the law. officials. but to discriminate against licensed and registered recruiters is unconstitutional. the filing of the answer to the complaint would take more than 90 days. the respondent asserted. The period within which the summons and the complaint would be served on foreign employees and. hence. paragraph 2 of the law violate Section 22. Sections 8. – A criminal action arising from illegal recruitment as defined herein shall be filed with the Regional Trial Court of the province or city where the offense was committed or where the offended party actually resides at the time of the commission of the offense: Provided. Considering that such corporate officers and employees act with prior approval of the board of directors of such corporation. That the court where the criminal action is first filed shall acquire jurisdiction to the exclusion of other courts: Provided. The respondent. Article III of the Constitution10 prohibiting ex-post facto laws and bills of attainder.

could sustain direct injury as a result of the enforcement of the law. 207 SCRA 1). the ancillary remedy of a temporary restraining order and/or a writ of preliminary injunction prayed for must fall. 8042 not having been released as yet. an act of legislature approved by the executive is presumed to be within constitutional bounds (National Press Club v. 14 The petitioners asserted that the respondent is not the real party-ininterest as petitioner in the trial court. They argued 181 . 2. the amended petition for declaratory relief is devoid of merit for failure of petitioner to demonstrate convincingly that the assailed law is unconstitutional. 1 & 2. All reasonable doubts should be resolved in favor of the constitutionality of a statute (People v. the petitioners averred that: As earlier shown. Besides. (c) the assailed provisions do not violate any provisions of the Constitution. the petitioners alleged. Article VIII of the Constitution11 because they impair the power of the Supreme Court to promulgate rules of procedure. inter alia.000. 15 & 16.12 After the respective counsels of the parties were heard on oral arguments. 40. and. Executive Secretary. 207 SCRA 748). This presumption of constitutionality is based on the doctrine of separation of powers which enjoin upon each department a becoming respect for the acts of the other departments (Garcia vs. Section 10. 1995. Vera. 1995. Sec. alleging unconstitutionality must prove its invalidity beyond reasonable doubt (Caleon v. The petitioner posted the requisite bond and on August 24. be finally adjudged as not being entitled thereto. had utterly failed to show its clear right/s or that of its member-agencies to be protected by the injunctive relief and/or violation of said rights by the enforcement of the assailed sections of R. within ninety (90) calendar days after the filing of the complaint. 56). Commission on Elections. According to the respondent. …13 The petitioners filed a petition for certiorari with the Court of Appeals assailing the order and the writ of preliminary injunction issued by the trial court on the following grounds: 1. formulate the necessary rules and regulations for its effective implementation. that (a) the respondent has no cause of action for a declaratory relief. the trial court issued on August 21. Necessarily.A. (b) the petition was premature as the rules implementing Rep. (d) the law was approved by Congress in the exercise of the police power of the State. exemplary and other forms of damages. Act No. It is inconceivable how the respondent. subsections (g) and (i.Relations Commission (NLRC) shall have the original and exclusive jurisdiction to hear and decide. the said provisions violate Section 5(5). Agus Development Corporation.000 injunction bond which is grossly inadequate to answer for the damage which petitioner-officials may sustain. Section 7. 2nd par. Section 6. One who attacks a statute. 65 Phil. 204 SCRA 516 [1991]). 8042. In opposition to the respondent’s plea for injunctive relief. In their answer to the petition. the claims arising out of an employer-employee relationship or by virtue of any law or contract involving Filipino workers for overseas deployment including claims for actual. Respondent Judge fixed a P50. the trial court issued a writ of preliminary injunction enjoining the enforcement of the following provisions of Rep. 8042. within ninety (90) days after the effectiviy of this Act.). Act No. Section 8. 8042 pending the termination of the proceedings: … Section 2. subsections (a) to (m). an order granting the petitioner’s plea for a writ of preliminary injunction upon a bond of P50. subsections (a) & (b). Section 9. moral. Section 11. should respondent ARCOPHIL. apart from the defect and impropriety of the petition. Respondent ARCO-PHIL. otherwise known as the Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipinos Act of 1995. pars. and pars. The departments and agencies charged with carrying out the provisions of this Act shall. and Section 40 of Republic Act No. a non-stock and non-profit corporation.

at all. but failed to do so.that if. They assert that the amount is grossly inadequate to answer for any damages that the general public may suffer by reason of the non-enforcement of the assailed provisions of the law. as petitioner in the trial court.000 and whether or not the appellate court erred in affirming the trial court’s order and the writ of preliminary injunction issued by it. The petitioners bewail the P50. It is a non-stock. The respondent. The P50. was burdened to adduce preponderant evidence of such irreparable injury. if any. likewise.000 injunction bond fixed by the court a quo and sustained by the Court of Appeals is grossly inadequate to answer for the damage which petitioners-officials may sustain. 2. Act No. denied the petitioners’ motion for reconsideration of the said decision. be finally adjudged as not being entitled thereto. 1997. it failed to adduce in evidence a certified copy of its Articles of Incorporation and the resolutions of the said members authorizing it to represent the said agencies in the proceedings. The trial court committed a grave abuse of its discretion in granting the respondent’s plea for injunctive relief. Under Section 5. it is the licensed and registered recruitment agencies and/or the unskilled Filipino migrant workers discriminated against who would sustain the said injury or damage. this Court issued a temporary restraining order enjoining the respondents from enforcing the assailed order and writ of preliminary injunction. had utterly failed to show its clear right/s or that of its member-agencies to be protected by the injunctive relief and/or violation of said rights by the enforcement of the assailed sections of R. Although the respondent filed the petition in the Regional Trial Court in behalf of licensed and registered recruitment agencies. hence. not the real party-ininterest as petitioner in the action. for its part. Rule 58 of the Rules of Court. asserts that it has duly established its locus standi and its right to injunctive relief as gleaned from its pleadings and the appendages thereto. The petitioners contend that the respondent has no locus standi. The petitioners assert that the law is presumed constitutional and. It avers that the injunction bond posted by the respondent was more than adequate to answer for any injury or damage the petitioners may suffer. as such. not the respondent. it was incumbent on the petitioners. the petitioners averred that the respondent failed to establish the requisites for the issuance of a writ of preliminary injunction against the enforcement of the law and the rules and regulations issued implementing the same. The appellate court.15 On February 16. The petitioners further insisted that the petition a quo was premature since the rules and regulations implementing the law had yet to be promulgated when such petition was filed. the appellate court came out with a four-page decision dismissing the petition and affirming the assailed order and writ of preliminary injunction issued by the trial court. Neither is the suit of the respondent a class suit so as to vest in it a personality to assail Rep. the respondent is service-oriented while the recruitment agencies it purports to represent are profit-oriented. 1998. should private respondent ARCO-PHIL. The petitioners now come to this Court in a petition for review on certiorari on the following grounds: 1. 8042.000 bond fixed by the trial court for the issuance of a writ of preliminary injunction and affirmed by the appellate court. any damage would result in the implementation of the law. and the appellate court erred in affirming the order and the writ of preliminary injunction issued by the trial court. Private respondent ARCO-PHIL. as respondents in the RTC. 8042. the respondent was burdened to make a case strong enough to overcome such presumption and establish a clear right to injunctive relief. non-profit organization. On December 5. by reason of the writ of preliminary 182 . The respondent. to show cause why no injunction should issue. The Issues The core issue in this case is whether or not the trial court committed grave abuse of its discretion amounting to excess or lack of jurisdiction in issuing the assailed order and the writ of preliminary injunction on a bond of onlyP50. Finally.A.

The respondent is. and which approved separate resolutions expressly authorizing the respondent to file the said suit for and in their behalf. a property right protected under the Constitution. entity or association on matters related to the manpower recruitment industry. as parties-petitioners. or that the right of the third party would be diluted unless the party in court is allowed to espouse the third party’s constitutional claims. in failing to implead. The writ of preliminary injunction was necessitated by the great number of duly licensed recruitment agencies that had stopped or suspended their business operations for fear that their officers and employees would be indicted and prosecuted under the assailed oppressive penal provisions of the law. providing. The Respondent Has Locus Standi To File the Petition in the RTC in Representation of the Eleven Licensed and Registered Recruitment Agencies Impleaded in the Amended Petition The modern view is that an association has standing to complain of injuries to its members. The respondent.21 The Assailed Order and Writ of 183 . The respondent is but the medium through which its individual members seek to make more effective the expression of their voices and the redress of their grievances. to act as the representative of any individual. The respondent asserts that the assailed provisions violate the constitutional rights of its members and the officers and employees thereof. Nevertheless. the amended petition is deemed amended to avoid multiplicity of suits. under its Articles of Incorporation. and meted excessive penalties. the appropriate party to assert the rights of its members. urges that the Court should take judicial notice that the processing of deployment papers of overseas workers have come to a virtual standstill at the POEA. because it and its members are in every practical sense identical. creating and exploring employment opportunities for the exclusive benefit of its general membership. Commission on Elections.17 In Telecommunications and Broadcast Attorneys of the Philippines v. This view fuses the legal identity of an association with that of its members. the respondent was organized for the purposes inter alia of promoting and supporting the growth and development of the manpower recruitment industry. The Court’s Ruling The petition is meritorious. and. The respondent contends that the commendable purpose of the law to eradicate illegal recruiters should not be done at the expense and to the prejudice of licensed and authorized recruitment agencies. the respondent filed the petition for declaratory relief under Rule 64 of the Rules of Court for and in behalf of its eleven (11) licensed and registered recruitment agencies which are its members. both in the local and international levels. thus. the respondent has no locus standi to file the petition for and in behalf of unskilled workers. An organization has standing to assert the concerns of its constituents. enhancing and promoting the general welfare and protection of Filipino workers. likewise.injunction issued by the RTC. In any event.16 An association has standing to file suit for its workers despite its lack of direct interest if its members are affected by the action. Act No. We note that it even failed to implead any unskilled workers in its petition.19 However. and to perform other acts and activities necessary to accomplish the purposes embodied therein. the assailed provisions of Rep. Furthermore. 8042 exposed its members to the immediate and irreparable damage of being deprived of their right to a livelihood without due process. company. We note that. In this case. the respondent failed to comply with Section 2 of Rule 6320 of the Rules of Court.18 we held that standing jus tertii would be recognized only if it can be shown that the party suing has some substantial relation to the third party. the eleven licensed and registered recruitment agencies it claimed to represent. since the eleven licensed and registered recruitment agencies for which the respondent filed the suit are specifically named in the petition.

on its claim that a great number of duly licensed recruitment agencies have stopped or suspended their operations for fear that (a) their officers and employees would be prosecuted under the unjust and unconstitutional penal provisions of Rep. the preservation of the State. that the enforcement of Rep. trade or calling is a property right within the meaning of our constitutional guarantees. 8042. however. Chowdury. business or trade has always been upheld as a legitimate subject of a valid exercise of the police power by the state particularly when their conduct affects either the execution of legitimate governmental functions. In any case. thus: A profession. Inc. would cause grave and irreparable injury to the respondent until the case is decided on its merits. 8042 and in venues as provided for in Section 9 of the said act. no right is absolute. for illegal recruitment and large scale illegal recruitment without regard to whether the recruitment agencies involved are licensed and/or authorized. the arbitrary and unwarranted deprivation of which normally constitutes an actionable wrong.Preliminary Injunction Is Mooted By Case Law The respondent justified its plea for injunctive relief on the allegation in its amended petition that its members are exposed to the immediate and irreparable danger of being deprived of their right to a livelihood and other constitutional rights without due process. Act No. they face the stigma and the curse of being labeled "illegal recruiters. calling." In granting the respondent’s plea for a writ of preliminary injunction. where the liberty curtailed affects at most the rights of property. and. under the mantle of the police power. Court of Appeals. it must of course be within the legitimate range of legislative action to define the mode and manner in which every one may so use his own property so as not to pose injury to himself or others. and the proper regulation of a profession. which are licensed and authorized. Act No. the permissible scope of regulatory measures is certainly much wider. To pretend that licensing or accreditation requirements violates the due process clause is to ignore the settled practice. and the last two paragraphs therein defining large scale illegal recruitment committed by officers and/or employees of recruitment agencies by themselves and in connivance with private individuals. Nevertheless. in a catena of cases. One cannot be deprived of the right to work and the right to make a living because these rights are property rights.22 The Informations therein were filed after preliminary investigations as provided for in Section 11 of Rep. v. decide to continue with their businesses. including paragraph (m) thereof. the public health and welfare and public morals. of regulating entry to the practice of various trades or professions. pendente lite. Seamen are required to take tests determining their seamanship. Act No. (b) if the members of the respondent. and imposed the penalties provided in Section 7 thereof. In People v. According to the maxim. 8042 took effect on July 15. Act No. including the penalty of life imprisonment. 1995.25 the issue of the extent of the police power of the State to regulate a business. that since Rep. applied the penal provisions in Section 6. sic utere tuo ut alienum non laedas. We note. 8042 and meted equally unjust and excessive penalties. the Professional Regulation Commission has begun to require previously licensed doctors and other professionals to furnish documentary proof that they had either re-trained or had undertaken continuing education courses as a 184 . Locally. profession or calling vis-à-vis the equal protection clause and the non-impairment clause of the Constitution were raised and we held. the trial court held. Professionals leaving for abroad are required to pass rigid written and practical exams before they are deemed fit to practice their trade. In JMM Promotion and Management. Diaz. Act No. without stating the factual and legal basis therefor. 8042 is but an amendment of the Labor Code of the Philippines and is not an ex- post facto law because it is not applied retroactively. including life imprisonment.24 we held that Rep.23 we held that illegal recruitment is a crime of economic sabotage and must be enforced. the Court had. In People v.

time and again. that the equal protection clause of the Constitution does not forbid classification for so long as such classification is based on real and substantial differences having a reasonable relation to the subject of the particular legislation. In Philippine Association of Service Exporters. and can act. and it is their conduct which the law must deter. only by and through its human agents. together with his employer. the Court thereby affirmed the validity of the assailed penal and procedural provisions of Rep. 185 . It does not require absolute equality. The RTC Committed Grave Abuse of Its Discretion Amounting to Excess or Lack of Jurisdiction in Issuing the Assailed Order and the Writ of Preliminary Injunction The matter of whether to issue a writ of preliminary injunction or not is addressed to the sound discretion of the trial court. it is a futile gesture on the part of petitioners to invoke the non-impairment clause of the Constitution to support their argument that the government cannot enact the assailed regulatory measures because they abridge the freedom to contract. Finally. We have held. if the court commits grave abuse of its discretion in issuing the said writ amounting to excess or lack of jurisdiction. concerns all members of the class. Until the Court. The equal protection clause is directed principally against undue favor and individual or class privilege. we held that "[t]he non-impairment clause of the Constitution … must yield to the loftier purposes targeted by the government. Act No. declares that the said provisions are unconstitutional. he consciously contributes his efforts to its conduct and promotion. If classification is germane to the purpose of the law. So long as professionals and other workers meet reasonable regulatory standards no such deprivation exists. It has been held that the existence of the corporate entity does not shield from prosecution the corporate agent who knowingly and intentionally causes the corporation to commit a crime. Petitioners suggest that the singling out of entertainers and performing artists under the assailed department orders constitutes class legislation which violates the equal protection clause of the Constitution. vs. the classification does not violate the equal protection guarantee. and always. including the imposable penalties therefor. 8042. The employee or agent of a corporation engaged in unlawful business naturally aids and abets in the carrying on of such business and will be prosecuted as principal if. The corporation obviously acts. with knowledge of the business. however slight his contribution may be. if it is shown that he actively and consciously participated in illegal recruitment.26 The validity of Section 6 of R. accomplices and accessories. the same may be nullified via a writ of certiorari and prohibition. It is not intended to prohibit legislation which is limited to the object to which it is directed or by the territory in which it is to operate. into every contract is read provisions of existing law. No. …28 By its rulings.A. Inc. An employee of a company or corporation engaged in illegal recruitment may be held liable as principal. Chowdury:27 As stated in the first sentence of Section 6 of RA 8042. the persons who may be held liable for illegal recruitment are the principals. A last point. Drilon. but merely that all persons be treated alike under like conditions both as to privileges conferred and liabilities imposed. 8042 which provides that employees of recruitment agencies may be criminally liable for illegal recruitment has been upheld in People v. However. a reservation of the police power for so long as the agreement deals with a subject impressed with the public welfare. the enforcement of the said provisions cannot be enjoined." Equally important. and applies equally to present and future conditions. by final judgment. It is not claimed that these requirements pose an unwarranted deprivation of a property right under the due process clause. We do not agree. its purpose and effect.requirement for renewal of their licenses.

at 881.40 The 186 . after reaffirming this rule. in good faith. either in their entirety or with respect to their separate and distinct prohibitions. 418. or will provide the movant with substantially all the relief sought and that relief cannot be undone even if the defendant prevails at a trial on the merits. or that there are sufficiently serious questions going to the merits and the balance of hardships tips decidedly in its favor.35 Considering that injunction is an exercise of equitable relief and authority.S. 32 The "on its face" invalidation of statutes has been described as "manifestly strong medicine. in Douglas. does not of itself justify an injunction against good faith attempts to enforce it. are not to be granted as a matter of course. 49. 63 S.29 we ruled that a law is presumed constitutional until otherwise declared by judicial interpretation. And similarly. In Younger v.. including the public interest. unless there is a showing of bad faith.Ct. 312 U. Harris. rather than maintain. Congress is empowered to define what acts or omissions shall constitute a crime and to prescribe punishments therefor.S. the party must establish that it will suffer irreparable harm in the absence of injunctive relief and must demonstrate that it is likely to succeed on the merits.30 the Supreme Court of the United States emphasized.39 It must be borne in mind that subject to constitutional limitations. unlawful is not alone ground for relief in equity which exerts its extraordinary powers only to prevent irreparable injury to the plaintiff who seeks its aid..31 The possible unconstitutionality of a statute. 61 S.Ct. 420. 577.In Social Security Commission v.37 Before the plaintiff may be entitled to injunction against future enforcement.." Moreover.33 To be entitled to a preliminary injunction to enjoin the enforcement of a law assailed to be unconstitutional. 752 Beal v. an injunction will alter.Ed." and is generally disfavored. No citizen or member of the community is immune from prosecution. so the chilling effect that admittedly can result from the very existence of certain laws on the statute books does not in itself justify prohibiting the State from carrying out the important and necessary task of enforcing these laws against socially harmful conduct that the State believes in good faith to be punishable under its laws and the Constitution." to be employed "sparingly and only as a last resort. he is burdened to show some substantial hardship. even if such statutes are unconstitutional. Judge Bayona.34 The higher standard reflects judicial deference toward "legislation or regulations developed through presumptively reasoned democratic processes. supra. or any other unusual circumstance that would call for equitable relief. The suspension of the operation of the law is a matter of extreme delicacy because it is an interference with the official acts not only of the duly elected representatives of the people but also of the highest magistrate of the land.38 The fear or chilling-effect of the assailed penal provisions of the law on the members of the respondent does not by itself justify prohibiting the State from enforcing them against those whom the State believes in good faith to be punishable under the laws: … Just as the incidental "chilling effect" of such statutes does not automatically render them unconstitutional. in assessing whether to issue a preliminary injunction. harassment. Jr. hence. the courts must sensitively assess all the equities of the situation. on its face.. 45. Missouri Pacific Railroad Corp. 85 L. 36 In litigations between governmental and private parties. for his alleged criminal acts. we made clear. thus: Federal injunctions against state criminal statutes. The imminence of such a prosecution even though alleged to be unauthorized and. that: "It does not appear from the record that petitioners have been threatened with any injury other than that incidental to every criminal proceeding brought lawfully and in good faith …" 319 U. the status quo. at 164. courts go much further both to give and withhold relief in furtherance of public interest than they are accustomed to go when only private interests are involved.

Its fear or apprehension that. which are members of the respondent. after trial.41 The comparative gravity of crimes and whether their consequences are more or less injurious are matters for the State and Congress itself to determine. 8042. Act No. such inconvenience or difficulty is hardly irreparable injury. the prosecution is able to prove all the elements of the crime charged. Neither did the respondent adduce any evidence in the RTC that any or all of its members or a great number of other duly licensed and registered recruitment agencies had to stop their business operations because of fear of indictments under Sections 6 and 7 of Rep. 8042. Act No. In People v. if convicted sentenced to life imprisonment for large scale illegal recruitment. Act No. 8042.42 Specification of penalties involves questions of legislative policy. 49 There is no allegation in the amended petition or evidence adduced by the respondent that the officers and/or employees of its members had been threatened with any indictments for violations of the penal provisions of Rep.47 The possibility that the officers and employees of the recruitment agencies. The accused may be convicted of illegal recruitment and large scale illegal recruitment only if. Essential to a bill of attainder are a specification of certain individuals or a group of individuals. 8042. would be indicted for illegal recruitment and. is not sufficient on which to base the issuance of a writ of preliminary injunction to suspend the enforcement of the penal provisions of Rep. and their relatives who are employed in the government agencies charged in the enforcement of the law.45 Bills of attainder are legislative acts which inflict punishment on individuals or members of a particular group without a judicial trial. these are peculiarly questions of legislative policy. the imposition of a punishment. Act No. Act No. 8042 and avert any indictments under the law. Even if true. and the lack of judicial trial.44 Class legislation is such legislation which denies rights to one which are accorded to others. Act No. The Court cannot take judicial notice that the processing of deployment papers of overseas workers have come to a virtual standstill at the POEA because of the assailed provisions of Rep. 8042 vis-à-vis the eleven licensed and registered recruitment agencies represented by the respondent.48The normal course of criminal prosecutions cannot be blocked on the basis of allegations which amount to speculations about the future. its members would have to defend foreign employees in cases before the Labor Arbiter is based on speculations. Act No. whether one believes in its efficiency or its futility.50we emphasized the primary aim of Rep.power is inherent in Congress and is part of the sovereign power of the State to maintain peace and order. because of time constraints. Neither is there any allegation therein that any of its members and/or their officers and employees committed any of the acts enumerated in Section 6(a) to (m) of the law for which they could be indicted. Gamboa. absent proof of irreparable injury. or inflicts upon one individual a more severe penalty than is imposed upon another in like case offending. Whatever views may be entertained regarding the severity of punishment. The trial court even ignored the public interest involved in suspending the enforcement of Rep. A writ of preliminary injunction to enjoin the enforcement of penal laws cannot be based on such conjectures or speculations. 8042: 187 . penal or otherwise.43 Due process prohibits criminal stability from shifting the burden of proof to the accused. and the petitioners accorded a chance to adduce controverting evidence. The respondent must adduce evidence to prove its allegation. The respondent merely speculated and surmised that licensed and registered recruitment agencies would close shop and stop business operations because of the assailed penal provisions of the law. defining crimes in vague or overbroad language and failing to grant fair warning of illegal conduct. punishing wholly passive conduct.46 Penalizing unlicensed and licensed recruitment agencies and their officers and employees and their relatives employed in government agencies charged with the enforcement of the law for illegal recruitment and imposing life imprisonment for those who commit large scale illegal recruitment is not offensive to the Constitution. The respondent even failed to adduce any evidence to prove irreparable injury because of the enforcement of Section 10(1)(2) of Rep.

Vol. 5 IN LIGHT OF ALL THE FOREGOING. and Tinga. Act No. Regino. 86-87. The trial court committed a grave abuse of its discretion amounting to excess or lack of jurisdiction in issuing the assailed order and writ of preliminary injunction. the proliferation of illegal job recruiters and syndicates preying on innocent people anxious to obtain employment abroad is one of the primary considerations that led to the enactment of The Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipinos Act of 1995. Section 1. 3 Records. 4 Section 2. 7 Section 1. Hofileña and Omar U.. The State recognizes the Filipino family as the foundation of the nation. Otherwise known as the Magna Carta of OFWs. Elbinias with Associate Justices Hector L. JJ. It shall equally protect the life of the mother and the life of the unborn from conception. The State recognizes the sanctity of family life and shall protect and strengthen the family as a basic autonomous social institution. nor shall any person be denied the equal protection of the laws. Accordingly. 2 Penned by Judge Teodoro P. it broadened the concept of illegal recruitment under the Labor Code and provided stiffer penalties thereto. Penned by Associate Justice Jesus M. 12. the trial court frustrated. 6 Sec. Illegal Recruitment in Large Scale and Illegal Recruitment Committed by a Syndicate. pp. Act No. Acting Chairman. Q-95-24401 and the Writ of Preliminary On official leave. it is a significant improvement on existing laws in the recruitment and placement of workers for overseas employment. concur. Footnotes * ** By issuing the writ of preliminary injunction against the petitioners sans any evidence. albeit temporarily. SO ORDERED. No person shall be deprived of life. the prosecution of illegal recruiters and allowed them to continue victimizing hapless and innocent people desiring to obtain employment abroad as overseas workers. Quisumbing**.e. 1995 in Civil Case No. had been remitting to the Philippines billions of dollars which over the years had propped the economy.Preliminarily. 1 In issuing the writ of preliminary injunction. 1995 are NULLIFIED. liberty or property without due process of law. I. paragraph (g). The Order of the Regional Trial Court dated August 21. It bears stressing that overseas workers. i. Puno*. especially those that constitute economic sabotage. it shall strengthen its solidarity and actively promote its total development. The natural and primary right and duty of parents in the rearing of the youth for civic efficiency and the development of moral character shall receive the support of the Government. No costs.51 Injunction issued by it in the said case on August 24. It is for this reason that the Court issued a temporary restraining order enjoining the enforcement of the writ of preliminary injunction issued by the trial court. the petition is GRANTED. The assailed decision of the appellate court is REVERSED AND SET ASIDE. the trial court considered paramount the interests of the eleven licensed and registered recruitment agencies represented by the respondent. Amin concurring. and blocked the attainment of the salutary policies52 embedded in Rep. and capriciously overturned the presumption of the constitutionality of the assailed provisions on the barefaced claim of the respondent that the assailed provisions of Rep.. Aimed at affording greater protection to overseas Filipino workers. Austria-Martinez. land-based and sea-based. 8042. who was later promoted Associate Justice of the Court of Appeals. 8042 are unconstitutional. 188 .

People v. I. – All persons who have or claim any interest which would be affected by the declaration shall be made parties. 262 SCRA 574 (1996). 3. Mercado de Arabia. 10. 262 SCRA 534 (1996). 304 SCRA 504 (1999). Gamboa. Vol. and shall not diminish. People v. Mañozca. 341 SCRA 451 (2000). prejudice the rights of persons not parties to the action. Ortiz-Miyake. 16 W. The State shall defend the following: … (3) The right of the family to a family living wage and income. cited in DeWitt County Taxpayers Association v. except as otherwise provided in these Rules. or modify substantive rights. Navarra. at 235. 335 SCRA 331 (2000). practice. pleading. People v. the admission to the practice of law.8 Sec.ed. citing NACCP v. 269 SCRA 513 (1997). nor cruel. People v. (Section 19. shall be uniform for all courts of the same grade. increase. 2. 267 SCRA 644 (1997). Ordoño. Benemerito. 19 9 Sec. 415 NE2d 1034 (1980).People v. Misjoinder and non-joinder of parties. 21 SEC. Saulo. Pabalan. The County Board of Deliot County. Any claim against a misjoined party may be severed and proceeded with separately. Such rules shall provide a simplified and inexpensive procedure for the speedy disposition of cases. Tan Tiong Meng. 22. Rules of procedure of special courts and quasi-judicial bodies shall remain effective unless disapproved by the Supreme Court. Alabama. People v. Chicago Board of Education. Mercado. 730 F2d 486 (1984). 2 L. 279 SCRA 180 (1997). (1) Excessive fines shall not be imposed. 13 Id. 306 SCRA 271 (1999). p. Santos. Winston Co. De Leon. 12 Records. 223. No ex-post facto law or bill of attainder shall be enacted. Señoron.People v. Calonzo. Moreno. 18 289 SCRA 337 (1998). 283 SCRA 81 (1997).) 10 Sec. 19. p. People v. Neither shall death penalty be imposed. People v. Parties. 24 259 SCRA 441 (1996). Fajardo. Any death penalty already imposed shall be reduced to reclusion perpetua. 17 Maite v. Castillon. People v. 11. 2 L. v. 277 SCRA 391 (1997). – Neither misjoinder nor non-joinder of parties is ground for dismissal of an action. People v. 352 SCRA 84 (2001). National Associates for the Advancement of Colored People v. and no declaration shall. 23 325 SCRA 572 (2000). Bernardi. State of Alabama. the Congress hereafter provides for it. 25 260 SCRA 319 (1996).Ed. 14 CA Rollo. and legal assistance to the underprivileged. 336 SCRA 64 (2000).2d 1488 (1958). for compelling reasons involving heinous crimes. 20 SEC. 264 SCRA 677 (1996). People v. 11 (5) Promulgate rules concerning the protection and enforcement of constitutional rights. 19.C. 445 NE2d 509 (1983). unless. Article III of the Constitution. People v. 22 People v. 271 SCRA 125 (1997). Peralta. People v. 267 SCRA 278 (1997).2d 1488 (1958). degrading or inhuman punishment inflicted. the Integrated Bar. People v. People v.. 345 SCRA 395 (2000). 332 SCRA 49 (2000). 344 SCRA 605 (2000). People v. 276 SCRA 329 (1997). 314 SCRA 556 (1999). Parties may be dropped or added by order of the court on motion of any party or on its own initiative at any stage of the action and on such terms as are just. Banzales. People v. Villas. 15 Rollo. and procedure in all courts. People v. 189 . p.M. Inc. People v.

S. Murray. 175 NE 666 (1919). Fieger v. Beal v.. 37 L. Stern.Ed. Jr.3d 396 (1993). 59 L. Schnell. supra. 344 SCRA 605 (2000)]. Jr.2d 216 (1992). Harris. 577. 41 United States v.Supp. Saulo. 12 F. 36 (1) the accused engages in the recruitment and placement of workers.2d 696 (1971). supra. The essential elements for large scale illegal recruitment are: 35 Forest City Daly Housing.. 366 SCRA 505 (2001)]. Bogle. 982 F. 34 Latino Officers Association v.Ed. Panga. 170 F. Oklahoma. 43 Gore v. 33 Broaderick v.2d 669 (1971). or any of the prohibited practices enumerated under Article 34 of the Labor Code. 29 5 SCRA 126 (1962). 32 Id. individually or as a group. 175 F. 184 F. Safir.. at 330-332. and 40 U. v. 181 SCRA 648 (1990). supra.Ed. Inc. Landry. United States. 28 Supra. 27 Supra at note 23. Downey Communications. particularly with respect to the securing of a license or an authority to recruit and deploy workers. 47 The essential elements for illegal recruitment are: 30 27 L.3d 740 (1996). 44 U. Schnell. and (2) he has no valid license or authority required by law to enable one to lawfully engage in recruitment and placement of workers. Joluston. 37 Maryland Commission on Human Relations v.3d 117 (1999). Town of North Hempstead. United States v. 45 State v. [People v. whether locally or overseas. Pascua.26 Id. 39 Younger v. 42 Collins v.App. 13(b).2d 1405 (1958). 190 .Ed. supra. (2) accused has not complied with the guidelines issued by the Secretary of Labor and Employment. 48 See Beal v. 38 Croselto v. Bogle. v. 74 F. 27 L. 110 Md. Inc.2d 841. 31 Ibid.S. v. [People v.2d 55 (1996). 62 L. Harris. 678 A. 49 Boyle v. 689 F. State Bar of Wisconsin.Ed. 493. (3) accused commits the same against three (3) or more persons.3d 144 (1999). Thomas. (1) the offender undertakes either any activity within the meaning of "recruitment and placement" defined under Art. Pacific Railroad Corporation..Ed. 85 L. 1121 (1988). 1071 (1915). cited in Younger v. as defined under Article 13(b) or in any prohibited activities under Article 34 of the Labor Code.3d 167 (1999). 46 Misolas v.

and Filipino migrant workers. Towards this end. Recognizing the contribution of overseas migrant women workers and their particular vulnerabilities. The State. be compromised or violated. therefore. the State shall. the government shall deploy and/or allow the deployment only of skilled Filipino workers. (d) The State affirms the fundamental equality before the law of women and men and the significant role of women in nation-building. (f) The right of Filipino migrant workers and all overseas Filipinos to participate in the democratic decision-making processes of the State and to be represented in institutions relevant to overseas employment is recognized and guaranteed. (b) The State shall afford full protection to labor. by local service contractors and manning agencies employing them shall 191 . the State shall provide adequate and timely social. documented or undocumented. at all times. it is imperative that an effective mechanism be instituted to ensure that the rights and interest of distressed overseas Filipinos. The existence of the overseas employment program rests solely on the assurance that the dignity and fundamental human rights and freedoms of the Filipino citizen shall not. organized and unorganized. Nonetheless. in particular. territorial integrity. the deployment of Filipino overseas workers. 52 (a) In the pursuit of an independent foreign policy and while considering national sovereignty. and promote full employment and equality of employment opportunities for all. at 456-458. the State shall apply gender sensitive criteria in the formulation and implementation of policies and programs affecting migrant workers and the composition of bodies tasked for the welfare of migrant workers. duly recognized as legitimate.50 341 SCRA 451 (2000). (g) The State recognizes that the ultimate protection to all migrant workers is the possession of skills. are partners of the State in the protection of Filipino migrant workers and in the promotion of their welfare. in particular. introduction. (h) Non-governmental organizations. whether land-based or sea-based. national interest and the right to self-determination paramount in its relations with other states. local and overseas. Pursuant to this and as soon as practicable. the State does not promote overseas employment as a means to sustain economic growth and achieve national development. shall continuously create local employment opportunities and promote the equitable distribution of wealth and the benefits of development. 51 Id. in general. and Filipino migrant workers. The State shall cooperate with them in a spirit of trust and mutual respect. (i) Government fees and other administrative costs of recruitment. uphold the dignity of its citizens whether in country or overseas. in general. In this regard. are adequately protected and safeguarded. placement and assistance to migrant workers shall be rendered free without prejudice to the provision of Section 36 hereof. economic and legal services to Filipino migrant workers. (e) Free access to the courts and quasi-judicial bodies and adequate legal assistance shall not be denied to any person by reason of poverty. (c) While recognizing the significant contribution of Filipino migrant workers to the national economy through their foreign exchange remittances. at any time.

GEN. The Secretary of National Defense. HON. DECISION KAPUNAN. the PNP Chief. I.be encouraged.[4] The President further stated that to heighten police visibility in the metropolis.R. ordered the PNP and the Marines to conduct joint visibility patrols for the purpose of crime prevention and suppression. dated 24 January 2000. J. through Police Chief Superintendent Edgar B. [2] Task Force Tulungan was placed under the leadership of the Police Chief of Metro Manila. AGLIPAY. augmentation from the AFP is necessary. the Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (the AFP). the President confirmed his previous directive on the deployment of the Marines in a Memorandum. petitioner. and GEN. the President expressed his desire to improve the peace and order situation in Metro Manila through a more effective crime prevention program including increased police patrols. ZAMORA. 35. In compliance with the presidential mandate. called Task Force Tulungan. p. Appropriate incentives may be extended to them. ANGELO REYES. 192 . vs. EN BANC [G. RONALDO B. PANFILO M. would be conducted. LACSON.: At bar is a special civil action for certiorari and prohibition with prayer for issuance of a temporary restraining order seeking to nullify on constitutional grounds the order of President Joseph Ejercito Estrada commanding the deployment of the Philippine Marines (the Marines) to join the Philippine National Police (the PNP) in visibility patrols around the metropolis. August 15. formulated Letter of Instruction 02/2000[1] (the LOI) which detailed the manner by which the joint visibility patrols. the President. Vol. (Records. in a verbal directive. respondents. like robberies. 141284. [5] Invoking his powers as Commander-in-Chief under Section 18. GEN. No. In view of the alarming increase in violent crimes in Metro Manila.) INTEGRATED BAR OF THE PHILIPPINES. 2000] Subsequently. kidnappings and carnappings. the Chief of the PNP and the Secretary of the Interior and Local Government were tasked to execute and implement the said order. Aglipay. addressed to the Chief of Staff of the AFP and the PNP Chief. [3] In the Memorandum. EDGAR B.

although the primary responsibility over Internal Security Operations still rests upon the AFP. Araneta Shopping Center. SITUATION: Criminal incidents in Metro Manila have been perpetrated not only by ordinary criminals but also by organized syndicates whose members include active and former police/military personnel whose training.[9] On 17 January 2000. local Police Units are responsible for the maintenance of peace and order in their locality. until such time when the situation shall have improved. structure. The principle of integration of efforts shall be applied to eradicate all forms of high-profile crimes perpetrated by organized crime syndicates operating in Metro Manila. c. This concept requires the military and police to work cohesively and unify efforts to ensure a focused. Hand-in-hand with this joint NCRPOPhilippine Marines visibility patrols.[8] The selected areas of deployment under the LOI are: Monumento Circle. through a sustained street patrolling to minimize or eradicate all forms of high-profile crimes especially those perpetrated by organized crime syndicates whose members include those that are well-trained. xxx. disciplined and well-armed active or former PNP/Military personnel. SM Megamall. a provisional Task Force TULUNGAN shall be organized to provide the mechanism. [7] The LOI explains the concept of the PNP-Philippine Marines joint visibility patrols as follows: xxx 2. North Edsa (SM City). coordinating. discipline and firepower prove well-above the present capability of the local police alone to handle. the President directed the AFP Chief of Staff and PNP Chief to coordinate with each other for the proper deployment and utilization of the Marines to assist the PNP in preventing or suppressing criminal or lawless violence. Greenhills. Along this line. skill. the President declared that the services of the Marines in the anti-crime campaign are merely temporary in nature and for a reasonable period only. effective and holistic approach in addressing crime prevention. arguing that: I 193 . LRT/MRT Stations and the NAIA and Domestic Airport. the role of the military and police aside from neutralizing crime syndicates is to bring a wholesome atmosphere wherein delivery of basic services to the people and development is achieved. [6] Finally. CONCEPT IN JOINT VISIBILITY PATROL OPERATIONS: a. b. 3. 5. 4. To ensure the effective implementation of this project.Article VII of the Constitution. PURPOSE: The Joint Implementing Police Visibility Patrols between the PNP NCRPO and the Philippine Marines partnership in the conduct of visibility patrols in Metro Manila for the suppression of crime prevention and other serious threats to national security. Makati Commercial Center. monitoring and assessing the security situation. the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (the IBP) filed the instant petition to annul LOI 02/2000 and to declare the deployment of the Philippine Marines. MISSION: The PNP NCRPO will organize a provisional Task Force to conduct joint NCRPO-PM visibility patrols to keep Metro Manila streets crimefree. The deployment of a joint PNP NCRPO-Philippine Marines in the conduct of police visibility patrol in urban areas will reduce the incidence of crimes specially those perpetrated by active or former police/military personnel. and procedures for the integrated planning. null and void and unconstitutional. The visibility patrols shall be conducted jointly by the NCRPO [National Capital Regional Police Office] and the Philippine Marines to curb criminality in Metro Manila and to preserve the internal security of the state against insurgents and other serious threat to national security.

The issues raised in the present petition are: (1) Whether or not petitioner has legal standing. SECTION 5 (4). required the Solicitor General to file his Comment on the petition. Second. Article VIII of the Constitution. SAID DEPLOYMENT IS IN DEROGATION OF ARTICLE II. On 8 February 2000. the Court can exercise its power of judicial review only if the following requisites are complied with. HENCE. EVEN ONLY REMOTELY. that petitioner has no legal standing.[12] 194 . the Solicitor General submitted his Comment. which feature the team-up of one police officer and one Philippine Marine soldier. namely: (1) the existence of an actual and appropriate case. the IBP questions the validity of the deployment and utilization of the Marines to assist the PNP in law enforcement. II IN MILITARIZING LAW ENFORCEMENT IN METRO MANILA. The Solicitor General vigorously defends the constitutionality of the act of the President in deploying the Marines. When questions of constitutional significance are raised.[10] Asserting itself as the official organization of Filipino lawyers tasked with the bounden duty to uphold the rule of law and the Constitution. A) NO EMERGENCY SITUATION OBTAINS IN METRO MANILA AS WOULD JUSTIFY. and to determine whether or not there has been grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction on the part of any branch or instrumentality of the Government. to wit: Section 1. the Court in a Resolution. and. that the question of deployment of the Marines is not proper for judicial scrutiny since the same involves a political question. contending. Judicial power includes the duty of the courts of justice to settle actual controversies involving rights which are legally demandable and enforceable. OF THE CONSTITUTION. IN THAT: of police visibility patrols. THE DEPLOYMENT OF SOLDIERS FOR LAW ENFORCEMENT WORK. that the organization and conduct The petition has no merit. petitioner failed to sufficiently show that it is in possession of the requisites of standing to raise the issues in the petition. (2) a personal and substantial interest of the party raising the constitutional question.THE DEPLOYMENT OF THE PHILIPPINE MARINES IN METRO MANILA IS VIOLATIVE OF THE CONSTITUTION. The judicial power shall be vested in one Supreme Court and in such lower courts as may be established by law. First. C) SAID DEPLOYMENT CREATES A DANGEROUS TENDENCY TO RELY ON THE MILITARY TO PERFORM THE CIVILIAN FUNCTIONS OF THE GOVERNMENT. SECTION 3 OF THE CONSTITUTION. among others.[11] dated 25 January 2000. and (4) the constitutional question is the lis mota of the case. (2) Whether or not the Presidents factual determination of the necessity of calling the armed forces is subject to judicial review. does not violate the civilian supremacy clause in the Constitution. (3) Whether or not the calling of the armed forces to assist the PNP in joint visibility patrols violates the constitutionalprovisions on civilian supremacy over the military and the civilian character of the PNP. THE ADMINISTRATION IS UNWITTINGLY MAKING THE MILITARY MORE POWERFUL THAN WHAT IT SHOULD REALLY BE UNDER THE CONSTITUTION. The power of judicial review is set forth in Section 1. Without granting due course to the petition. the President did not commit grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction nor did he commit a violation of the civilian supremacy clause of the Constitution. B) SAID DEPLOYMENT CONSTITUTES AN INSIDIOUS INCURSION BY THE MILITARY IN A CIVILIAN FUNCTION OF GOVERNMENT (LAW ENFORCEMENT) IN DEROGATION OF ARTICLE XVI. (3) the exercise of judicial review is pleaded at the earliest opportunity.

highly speculative and uncertain to satisfy the requirement of standing. however. is not sufficient to clothe it with standing in this case. while undoubtedly true. none of its members. Apart from this declaration. has not shown any specific injury which it has suffered or may suffer by virtue of the questioned governmental act. [18] In this case. an interest in issue affected by the decree. The President did not commit grave abuse of discretion in calling out the Marines. however. Legal standing or locus standi has been defined as a personal and substantial interest in the case such that the party has sustained or will sustain direct injury as a result of the governmental act that is being challenged. [14] The gist of the question of standing is whether a party alleges such personal stake in the outcome of the controversy as to assure that concrete adverseness which sharpens the presentation of issues upon which the court depends for illumination of difficult constitutional questions. Since petitioner has not successfully established a direct and personal injury as a consequence of the questioned act. the Court may brush aside technicalities of procedure. by way of allegations and proof. Neither is it alleged that any of its members has been arrested or that their civil liberties have been violated by the deployment of the Marines. is his alone. In this regard.[16] In not a few cases. or a mere incidental interest. [17] Thus. What the IBP projects as injurious is the supposed militarization of law enforcement which might threaten Philippine democratic institutions and may cause more harm than good in the long run. Rule 139-A of the Rules of Court. satisfy this Court that it has sufficient stake to obtain judicial resolution of the controversy. the bone of contention concerns the factual determination of the President of the necessity of calling the armed forces. the IBP has failed to present a specific and substantial interest in the resolution of the case. the IBP asserts no other basis in support of its locus standi. Moreover. novelty and weight as precedents. This is too general an interest which is shared by other groups and the whole citizenry. the Court has adopted a liberal attitude on the locus standi of a petitioner where the petitioner is able to craft an issue of transcendental significance to the people. those in the judiciary included. The IBP must. particularly the Marines. the IBP primarily anchors its standing on its alleged responsibility to uphold the rule of law and the Constitution. rather than later. as distinguished from mere interest in the question involved. whom the IBP purportedly represents. It will stare us in the face again. Not only is the presumed injury not personal in character. undoubtedly aggravated by the Mindanao insurgency problem. In the case at bar. behooves the Court to relax the rules on standing and to resolve the issue now. Having stated the foregoing. It. is to elevate the standards of the law profession and to improve the administration of justice is alien to. because peace and order are under constant threat and lawless violence occurs in increasing tempo. has sustained any form of injury as a result of the operation of the joint visibility patrols. Indeed. Its fundamental purpose which. Based on the standards above-stated.[13] The term interest means a material interest. does not categorically rule that the IBP has absolutely no standing to raise constitutional issues now or in the future. therefore.[15] In the case at bar. the IBP admits that the deployment of the military 195 . The mere invocation by the IBP of its duty to preserve the rule of law and nothing more. it is likewise too vague. it does not possess the personality to assail the validity of the deployment of the Marines. the legal controversy raised in the petition almost certainly will not go away. when the issues raised are of paramount importance to the public. it must be emphasized that this Court has the discretion to take cognizance of a suit which does not satisfy the requirement of legal standing when paramount interest is involved. assuming that it has duly authorized the National President to file the petition. under Section 2. absent a formal board resolution authorizing him to file the present action. members of the BAR. to aid the PNP in visibility patrols. This Court. and cannot be affected by the deployment of the Marines. It should also be noted that the interest of the National President of the IBP who signed the petition. Moreover. a reading of the petition shows that the IBP has advanced constitutional issues which deserve the attention of this Court in view of their seriousness. the IBP. To be sure.The IBP has not sufficiently complied with the requisites of standing in this case. have varying opinions on the issue.

For in making the President commander-in-chief the enumeration of powers that follow cannot be said to exclude the Presidents exercising as Commander-in-Chief powers short of the calling of the armed forces. in fulfilling presidential duties in times of peace is not in any way diminished by the relative want of an emergency specified in the commander-in-chief provision. The President is not only clothed with extraordinary powers in times of emergency. The reason is that political questions are concerned with issues dependent upon the wisdom.[22] It pertains to issues which are inherently susceptible of being decided on grounds recognized by law. The Solicitor General. or suspending the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus or declaring martial law. Wide discretion. invasion or rebellion. notjusticiable. the Court does not automatically assume jurisdiction over actual constitutional cases brought before it even in instances that are ripe for resolution. specifically. the realities on the ground do not show that there exist a state of warfare. the full brunt of the military is not brought upon the citizenry. Moreover. and the extent of judicial review. the underlying issues are the scope of presidential powers and limits. or in regard to which full discretionary authority has been delegated to the legislative or 196 . the resolution of the controversy will reach a similar result. this case calls for the exercise of the Presidents powers as protector of the peace. the courts will not normally interfere with the workings of another co-equal branch unless the case shows a clear need for the courts to step in to uphold the law and the Constitution. however. According to the IBP. One class of cases wherein the Court hesitates to rule on are political questions. political questions refer to those questions which. but is also tasked with attending to the day-to-day problems of maintaining peace and order Nonetheless.[20] For one. the IBP prays that this Court review the sufficiency of the factual basis for said troop [Marine] deployment. invasion or rebellion. a point discussed in the latter part of this decision. contends that the issue pertaining to the necessity of calling the armed forces is not proper for judicial scrutiny since it involves a political question and the resolution of factual issues which are beyond the review powers of this Court. xxx[21] As framed by the parties. under the Constitution. Manglapus: More particularly.personnel falls under the Commander-in-Chief powers of the President as stated in Section 18. the Court is of the view that the power involved may be no more than the maintenance of peace and order and promotion of the general welfare. Secondly. widespread civil unrest or anarchy. is the basis for the calling of the Marines under the aforestated provision. Thus. and maintain public order and security. are to be decided by the people in their sovereign capacity. We now address the Solicitor Generals argument that the issue involved is not susceptible to review by the judiciary because it involves a political question. while this Court gives considerable weight to the parties formulation of the issues. not the legality. What the IBP questions. In the words of the late Justice Irene Cortes in Marcos v. in order to keep the peace. It contends that no lawless violence. no emergency exists that would justify the need for the calling of the military to assist the police force. Cuenco[23] puts it. of a particular act or measure being assailed. The power of the President to keep the peace is not limited merely to exercising the commander-in-chief powers in times of emergency or to leading the State against external and internal threats to its existence. invasion or rebellion exist to warrant the calling of the Marines. But. As a general proposition. the resolution of the controversy may warrant a creative approach that goes beyond the narrow confines of the issues raised. and thus. As Taada v. the political question being a function of the separation of powers. on the other hand. even if it is conceded that the power involved is the Presidents power to call out the armed forces to prevent or suppress lawless violence. Nevertheless. Thus. the power to call out the armed forces to prevent or suppress lawless violence.[19] and ensuring domestic tranquility in times when no foreign foe appears on the horizon. Article VII of the Constitution. [Rossiter. while the parties are in agreement that the power exercised by the President is the power to call out the armed forces. within the bounds of law. The American Presidency]. a controversy is justiciable if it refers to a matter which is appropriate for court review.

[28] By grave abuse of discretion is meant simply capricious or whimsical exercise of judgment that is patent and gross as to amount to an evasion of positive duty or a virtual refusal to perform a duty enjoined by law. or a lack of judicially discoverable and manageable standards for resolving it. There is a clear textual commitment under the Constitution to bestow on the President full discretionary power to call out the armed forces and to determine the necessity for the exercise of such power. When the grant of power is qualified. conditional or subject to limitations. cannot be called upon to overrule the Presidents wisdom or substitute its own. The 1987 Constitution expands the concept of judicial review by providing that (T)he Judicial power shall be vested in one Supreme Court and in such lower courts as may be established by law. Judicial power includes the duty of the courts of justice to settle actual controversies involving rights which are legally demandable and enforceable. [25] Under this definition. thus. However. But while this Court has no power to substitute its judgment for that of Congress or of the President. Thus. or an unusual need for unquestioning adherence to a political decision already made. likewise. There is. which embodies the powers of the President as Commander-in-Chief. provides in part: 197 .executive branch of government. or the impossibility of a courts undertaking independent resolution without expressing lack of the respect due coordinate branches of government.[31] When the President calls the armed forces to prevent or suppress lawless violence. invasion or rebellion. In view of the constitutional intent to give the President full discretionary power to determine the necessity of calling out the armed forces.[30] A showing that plenary power is granted either department of government. a court is without power to directly decide matters over which full discretionary authority has been delegated. no evidence to support the proposition that grave abuse was committed because the power to call was exercised in such a manner as to violate the constitutional provision on civilian supremacy over the military. the jurisdiction to delimit constitutional boundaries has been given to this Court. if an issue is clearly identified by the text of the Constitution as matters for discretionary action by a particular branch of government or to the people themselves then it is held to be a political question. it may look into the question of whether such exercise has been made in grave abuse of discretion. only where such grave abuse of discretion is clearly shown shall the Court interfere with the Presidents judgment. not its wisdom.[26] Moreover. [27] When political questions are involved.the problem being one of legality or validity. Carr. To doubt is to sustain. The Court. Article VII of the Constitution. as where the power is exercised in an arbitrary and despotic manner by reason of passion or hostility. and to determine whether or not there has been a grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction on the part of any branch or instrumentality of the Government. it is incumbent upon the petitioner to show that the Presidents decision is totally bereft of factual basis. In the classic formulation of Justice Brennan in Baker v. or to act at all in contemplation of law. is justiciable . This is clear from the intent of the framers and from the text of the Constitution itself.[24] [p]rominent on the surface of any case held to involve a political question is found a textually demonstrable constitutional commitment of the issue to a coordinate political department. Section 18. for the improvident exercise or abuse thereof may give rise to justiciable controversy. he necessarily exercises a discretionary power solely vested in his wisdom.[29] Under this definition. or the impossibility of deciding without an initial policy determination of a kind clearly for nonjudicial discretion. or the potentiality of embarassment from multifarious pronouncements by various departments on the one question. the issue of whether the prescribed qualifications or conditions have been met or the limitations respected. the Constitution limits the determination as to whether or not there has been a grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction on the part of the official whose action is being questioned. may not be an obstacle to judicial inquiry. the Court cannot agree with the Solicitor General that the issue involved is a political question beyond the jurisdiction of this Court to review. this does not prevent an examination of whether such power was exercised within permissible constitutional limits or whether it was exercised in a manner constituting grave abuse of discretion. The present petition fails to discharge such heavy burden as there is no evidence to support the assertion that there exist no justification for calling out the armed forces. In the performance of this Courts duty of purposeful hesitation[32] before declaring an act of another branch as unconstitutional.

I may add that there is a graduated power of the President as Commander-in-Chief. any person thus arrested or detained shall be judicially charged within three days. he may call out such armed forces to prevent or suppress lawless violence. convene in accordance with its rules without need of a call. Where the terms are expressly limited to certain matters. During the suspension of the privilege of the writ. thus: xxx Within forty-eight hours from the proclamation of martial law or the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus. may revoke such proclamation or suspension. nor supplant the functioning of the civil courts or legislative assemblies.[33] That the intent of the Constitution is exactly what its letter says. if the invasion or rebellion shall persist and public safety requires it. Congress may revoke such proclamation or suspension and the Court may review the sufficiency of the factual basis thereof. We are making it subject to review by the Supreme Court and subject to concurrence by the National Assembly. First.. then he can impose martial law. Under the foregoing provisions. he may.e. Article VII which reads. the framers of the Constitution would have simply lumped together the three powers and provided for their revocation and review without any qualification. in an appropriate proceeding filed by any citizen. his judgment is subject to review. When he judges that it is necessary to impose martial law or suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus.The President shall be the Commander-in-Chief of all armed forces of the Philippines and whenever it becomes necessary. Upon the initiative of the President. extend such proclamation or suspension for a period to be determined by the Congress. the President shall submit a report in person or in writing to the Congress. by a vote of at least a majority of all its Members in regular or special session. be extended to other matters. nor automatically suspend the privilege of the writ. The Congress. A state of martial law does not suspend the operation of the Constitution. the sufficiency of the factual basis of the proclamation of martial law or the suspension of the privilege of the writ or the extension thereof. BERNAS. when the public safety requires it. Expressio unius est exclusio alterius. or place the Philippines or any part thereof under martial law. he can call out such Armed Forces as may be necessary to suppress lawless violence. However. otherwise. if not in session. This is a graduated sequence. invasion or rebellion. which revocation shall not be set aside by the President. shall within twenty-four hours following such proclamation or suspension. The suspension of the privilege of the writ shall apply only to persons judicially charged for rebellion or offenses inherent in or directly connected with invasion. and must promulgate its decision thereon within thirty days from its filing. in the same manner. there is no such equivalent provision dealing with the revocation or review of the Presidents action to call out the armed forces. that the power to call is fully discretionary to the President. In case of invasion or rebellion. by interpretation or construction. voting jointly. for a period not exceeding sixty days. It will not make any difference. suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus. is extant in the deliberation of the Constitutional Commission. to wit: FR. nor authorize the conferment of jurisdiction on military courts and agencies over civilians where civil courts are able to function. xxx The full discretionary power of the President to determine the factual basis for the exercise of the calling out power is also implied and further reinforced in the rest of Section 18. the Congress may. But 198 . The Supreme Court may review. The Congress. otherwise he shall be released. it may not. The distinction places the calling out power in a different category from the power to declare martial law and the power to suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus. i. then he can suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus.

under Section 18.. or wholly unavailable to the courts. Moreover. of invasion or rebellion. the President as Commander-in-Chief has a vast intelligence network to gather information. Such a scenario is not farfetched when we consider the present situation in Mindanao. invasion or rebellion. to support the assertion that the President acted without factual basis. So we feel that that is sufficient for handling imminent danger. In many instances.. In the exercise of the power to call. full discretion to call forth the military when in his judgment it is 199 . two conditions must concur: (1) there must be an actual invasion or rebellion and. So we feel that that is sufficient for handling imminent danger. information necessary to arrive at such judgment might also prove unmanageable for the courts. when he says it is necessary. On the other hand. Besides the absence of textual standards that the court may use to judge necessity. the matter can be handled by the first sentence: The President may call out such armed forces to prevent or suppress lawless violence. Certain pertinent information might be difficult to verify. The only criterion is that whenever it becomes necessary. in the exercise of the power to suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus or to impose martial law. it is the unclouded intent of the Constitution to vest upon the President. Article VII of the Constitution. as Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces. Indeed. xxx FR. and thus necessitating safeguards by Congress and review by this Court. DE LOS REYES. both of which involve the curtailment and suppression of certain basic civil rights and individual freedoms. Let me just add that when we only have imminent danger. invasion or rebellion.. instead of imposing martial law or suspending the writ of habeas corpus. as such power may be unduly straitjacketed by an injunction or a temporary restraining order every time it is exercised.may call out such Armed Forces to prevent or suppress lawless violence.when he exercises this lesser power of calling on the Armed Forces. some of which may be classified as highly confidential or affecting the security of the state. These conditions are not required in the case of the power to call out the armed forces. So actually. REGALADO. the evidence upon which the President might decide that there is a need to call out the armed forces may be of a nature not constituting technical proof. then this Court cannot undertake an independent investigation beyond the pleadings. on-the-spot decisions may be imperatively necessary in emergency situations to avert great loss of human lives and mass destruction of property. Thus. The determination of the necessity for the calling out power if subjected to unfettered judicial scrutiny could be a veritable prescription for disaster. by way of proof. That does not require any concurrence by the legislature nor is it subject to judicial review. the decision to call out the military to prevent or suppress lawless violence must be done swiftly and decisively if it were to have any effect at all. invasion or rebellion. (2) public safety must require it. Is that the idea? MR." The implication is that the President is given full discretion and wide latitude in the exercise of the power to call as compared to the two other powers. If the petitioner fails. The factual necessity of calling out the armed forces is not easily quantifiable and cannot be objectively established since matters considered for satisfying the same is a combination of several factors which are not always accessible to the courts. the President may call the armed forces to prevent or suppress lawless violence. where the insurgency problem could spill over the other parts of the country. the matter can be handled by the First Sentence: The President. he must necessarily have to call the Armed Forces of the Philippines as their Commander-in-Chief. BERNAS. MR. it is my opinion that his judgment cannot be reviewed by anybody.[34] The reason for the difference in the treatment of the aforementioned powers highlights the intent to grant the President the widest leeway and broadest discretion in using the power to call out because it is considered as the lesser and more benign power compared to the power to suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus and the power to impose martial law. if a President feels that there is imminent danger.

Considering all these facts..[41] In this regard. the Presidents exercise of judgment deserves to be accorded respect from this Court. [39] It is. has been virtually appointed to a civilian post in derogation of the aforecited provision. Hence. the Marines render nothing more than assistance required in conducting the patrols. their duty to provide the necessary equipment to the Marines and render logistical support to these soldiers.[35] We do not doubt the veracity of the Presidents assessment of the situation. The calling of the Marines in this case constitutes permissible use of military assets for civilian law enforcement. by his alleged involvement in civilian law enforcement. public utilities. It is noteworthy that the local police forces are the ones in charge of the visibility patrols at all times. invasion or rebellion.[40] In view of the foregoing. exemplifying the activities that bring both the civilian and the military together in a relationship of cooperation. Article XVI of the Constitution. Prescinding from its argument that no emergency situation exists to justify the calling of the Marines. As such. and not with the military. likewise. It is worth mentioning that military assistance to civilian authorities in various forms persists in Philippine jurisdiction. As correctly pointed out by the Solicitor General. we hold that the President has sufficient factual basis to call for military aid in law enforcement and in the exercise of this constitutional power. which sufficiently provides the metes and bounds of the Marines authority. the PNP. In his Memorandum. there can be no insidious incursion of the military in civilian affairs nor can there be a violation of the civilian supremacy clause in the Constitution.necessary to do so in order to prevent or suppress lawless violence. We disagree. holdups. it does not matter whether the AFP Chief actually participates in the Task Force Tulungan since he does not exercise any authority or control over the same. Article II[36] of the Constitution. and other public places. it cannot be properly argued that military authority is supreme over civilian authority. The Court takes judicial notice of the recent bombings perpetrated by lawless elements in the shopping malls. he categorically asserted that. These are among the areas of deployment described in the LOI 2000. The real authority in these operations. is lodged with the head of a civilian institution. Such being the case. there can be no appointment to civilian position to speak of. it is not correct to say that General Angelo Reyes. Unless the petitioner can show that the exercise of such discretion was gravely abused. the police forces are tasked to brief or orient the soldiers on police patrol procedures. [V]iolent crimes like bank/store robberies. especially in the light of present developments. the IBP asserts that by the deployment of the Marines. Considering the above circumstances. The deployment of the Marines does not violate the civilian supremacy clause nor does it infringe the civilian character of the police force. the deployment of the Marines to assist the PNP does not unmake the civilian character of the police force. [37] Under the LOI. the civilian task of law enforcement is militarized in violation of Section 3. kidnappings and carnappings continue to occur in Metro Manila. the real authority belonging to the PNP. The participation of the Marines in the conduct of joint visibility patrols is appropriately circumscribed. Since none of the Marines was incorporated or enlisted as members of the PNP. The limited participation of the Marines is evident in the provisions of the LOI itself. some of the multifarious activities wherein military aid has been rendered. as stated in the LOI. Chief of Staff of the AFP. the deployment of the Marines in the joint visibility patrols does not destroy the civilian character of the PNP. The President has already determined the necessity and factual basis for calling the armed forces. are: 200 . Neither does it amount to an insidious incursion of the military in the task of law enforcement in violation of Section 5(4). the Metro Manila Police Chief is the overall leader of the PNP-Philippine Marines joint visibility patrols. In fact. The deployment of the Marines does not constitute a breach of the civilian supremacy clause.. The Philippine experience reveals that it is not averse to requesting the assistance of the military in the implementation and execution of certain traditionally civil functions. [38] It is their responsibility to direct and manage the deployment of the Marines. Moreover.

404-433 (1986). A provision of the Act states: 1385. Relief and rescue operations during calamities and disasters. does not expressly provide for the power to call. where a long tradition of suspicion and hostility towards the use of military force for domestic purposes has Were Army or Air Force personnel used by the civilian law enforcement officers at Wounded Knee in such a manner that the military personnel subjected the citizens to the exercise of military power which was regulatory. the use of military personnel by civilian law enforcement officers is allowed under circumstances similar to those surrounding the present deployment of the Philippine Marines. In the United States.[45] 5.[60] and whose Constitution. [43] 3. executive practice. long pursued to the knowledge of Congress and. the use of the military in civilian law enforcement is generally prohibited. See likewise HONORED IN THE BREECH: PRESIDENTIAL AUTHORITY TO EXECUTE THE LAWS WITH MILITARY FORCE.[58] This unquestionably constitutes a gloss on executive power resulting from a systematic.[62] 10. Sanitary inspections. except in cases and under circumstances expressly authorized by the Constitution or Act of Congress. pp. pp. 64 in nature.[54] 14. never before questioned. (emphasis supplied) 201 . or both. 83 Yale Law Journal. Administration of the Civil Aeronautics Board.1. to wit: 12. which discusses the four divergent standards for assessing acceptable involvement of military personnel in civil law enforcement. even when not expressly authorized by the Constitution or a statute. or compulsory[64] George Washington Law Review. forbids or compels some conduct on the part of those claiming relief. 130-152. Conduct of nationwide tests for elementary and high school students. proscriptive. unbroken. A mere threat of some future injury would be insufficient. [50] persisted. Implementation of the agrarian reform program.[44] 4. Conduct of licensure examinations. Peace and order policy formulation in local government units. yet. Enforcement of customs laws. Anti-drug enforcement activities.[46] 6. either presently or prospectively? xxx When this concept is transplanted into the present legal context. Administration of the Philippine National Red Cross.[51] 11. Use of Army and Air Force as posse comitatus Whoever.000 or imprisoned not more than two years.[55] 15. Conduct of census work. Development of the culture and the arts. [48] 8. Assistance in installation of weather forecasting devices. Elections. the US courts [63] apply the following standards.[57] 17.[49] 9. Under the Posse Comitatus Act[61] of the US. not derogation of civilian supremacy.[59] What we have here is mutual support and cooperation between the military and civilian authorities.[56] 16.[53] 13. Composite civilian-military law enforcement activities. willfully uses any part of the Army or the Air Force as posse comitatus or otherwise to execute the laws shall be fined not more than $10. Amateur sports promotion and development. Conservation of natural resources. except in certain allowable circumstances.does not violate the Posse Comitatus Act unless it actually regulates. we take it to mean that military involvement.[52] To determine whether there is a violation of the Posse Comitatus Act in the use of military personnel.[42] 2. 1973. unlike ours.[47] 7.

J. 8(c) [70] of Annex A. Jr. The power to call the armed forces is just that . Melo. 9(d)[69] of Annex A. see separate opinion. Bellosillo. it would have diminished the power of judicial review and weakened the checking authority of this Court over the Chief Executive when he exercises his commander-in-chief powers..[66] 8(k)[67] and 9(a)[68] of Annex A.. GonzagaReyes.[71] Davide.. If the case at bar is significant. petitioner IBP can show. it is because of the government attempt to foist the political question doctrine to shield an executive act done in the exercise of the commander-in-chief powers from judicial scrutiny. on official leave. 2000.The conclusion is that there being no exercise of regulatory.. Mendoza. the petition is hereby DISMISSED. the conclusion is inevitable that no violation of the civilian supremacy clause in the Constitution is committed. It was precisely to safeguard peace. and De Leon. exceeded his authority or jeopardized the civil liberties of the people. This is evident from Nos. see separate opinion. this Court is not inclined to overrule the Presidents determination of the factual basis for the calling of the Marines to prevent or suppress lawless violence. Since the institution of the joint visibility patrol in January. also have no power to prohibit or condemn. In No. The designation of tasks in Annex A[65] does not constitute the exercise of regulatory. all arrested persons are brought to the nearest police stations for proper disposition. the President has violated the fundamental law.. and thus place in peril our cherished liberties. not when the shadows of violence and anarchy constantly lurk in their midst.: 202 .J. proscriptive or compulsory military power. however. tranquility and the civil liberties of the people that the joint visibility patrol was conceived. Panganiban. as shown in No. A laid back posture may not sit well with our people considering that the 1987 Constitution strengthened the checking powers of this Court and expanded its jurisdiction precisely to stop any One last point. Vitug. J. It appears that the present petition is anchored on fear that once the armed forces are deployed. SO ORDERED. are all low impact and defensive in character. these soldiers apply no coercive force. On this point. concur. Pardo. The ongoing conflict in Mindanao may worsen and can force the Chief Executive to resort to the use of his greater commander-in-chief powers. in the result. J. the military will gain ascendancy. These soldiers. hence. Unless. Quisumbing. Puno. Buena.. SEPARATE OPINION PUNO. the Court agrees with the observation of the Solicitor General: people feel secure in their homes and in the streets. And last. the soldiers do not control or direct the operation. JJ. which it has not. J. If the attempt succeeded. Freedom and democracy will be in full bloom only when WHEREFORE. this Court should be extra cautious in assaying similar attempts. First. second. Mendoza. J. not a single citizen has complained that his political or civil rights have been violated as a result of the deployment of the Marines. C.. or compulsory military power.Even if the Court were to apply the above rigid standards to the present case to determine whether there is permissible use of the military in civilian law enforcement.. Ynares-Santiago. premises considered. 6. Jr. joins the opinion of J. 3. Purisima. J.. the deployment of a handful of Philippine Marines constitutes no impermissible use of military power for civilian law enforcement. proscriptive. see concurring and dissenting opinion. Such apprehensions. that in the deployment of the Marines.calling out the armed forces. are unfounded. The attempt should remind us of the tragedy that befell the country when this Court sought refuge in the political question doctrine and forfeited its most important role as protector of the civil and political rights of our people. J.. The materials or equipment issued to them.

7 Since the Philippine Bill of 1902 empowered the Philippine Commission and the Governor-General to suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus. 3 The exercise of the discretionary power of the legislative or executive branch of government was often the area where the Court had to wrestle with the political question doctrine. The exercise of this discretion is conclusive upon the courts. Felix Barcelon."12 The issue revisited the Court twenty-two (22) years later. 9 It adopted the rationale that the executive branch. Quezon. The doctrine barring judicial review because of the political question doctrine was next applied to the internal affairs of the legislature. it refused to issue the writ of mandamus on the ground that "the Supreme Court does not possess the power of coercion to make the Philippine Senate take any particular action. or in regard to which full discretionary authority has been delegated to the legislative or executive branch of government. In 1946.8 The Court further held that once a determination is made by the executive and legislative departments that the conditions justifying the assailed acts exists. with its very limited machinery.6 Surveying American law and jurisprudence. who was appointed Senator by the Governor-General. The issue to resolve was whether or not the judicial department may investigate the facts upon which the legislative (the Philippine Commission) and executive (the GovernorGeneral) branches of government acted in suspending the privilege of the writ. Baker. The Court refused to interfere in the legislative exercise of disciplinary power over its own members. was declared by Senate Resolution as guilty of disorderly conduct for assaulting another Senator in the course of a debate. Senator Alejandrino filed a petition for mandamus and injunction to compel the Senate to reinstate him. are to be decided by the people in their sovereign capacity. filed a petition for the issuance of a writ of habeas corpus alleging that there was no open insurrection in Batangas. it will presume that the conditions continue until the same authority decide that they no longer exist. arebetter situated to obtain information about peace and order from every corner of the nation. suspended the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus in Cavite and Batangas based on a finding of open insurrection in said provinces. with discretionary power to act. in contrast with the judicial department.2 They have two aspects: (1) those matters that are to be exercised by the people in their primary political capacity and (2) matters which have been specifically delegated to some other department or particular office of the government.13 three senators-elect who had been prevented from taking their oaths of office by a Senate resolution repaired to this Court to compel their colleagues to allow them to occupy their seats contending that only the Electoral Tribunal had 203 . which acts are performed within the discretion of the other department. to be exercised by him upon his own opinion of certain facts. This question confronted the Court as early as 1905 in the case of Barcelon v.11 Alejandrino. pursuant to a resolution of the Philippine Commission. thru its civil and military branches. Political questions are defined as those questions which under the Constitution.5 The Governor-General of the Philippine Islands. who was detained by constabulary officers in Batangas. it held that whenever a statute gives discretionary power to any person. The Court ruled that under our form of government. in Vera v. and was suspended from office for one year. [T]he Philippine Legislature or any branch thereof cannot be directly controlled in the exercise of their legislative powers by any judicial process. one department has no authority to inquire into the acts of another. While the Court found that the suspension was illegal. this power is exclusively within the discretion of the legislative and executive branches of government.4 A brief review of some of our case law will thus give us a sharper perspective of the political question doctrine.act constituting xxx grave abuse of jurisdiction xxx on the part of any branch or instrumentality of the Government. We can best perceive the different intersecting dimensions of the political question doctrine by viewing them from the broader canvass of history. In the 1924 case of Alejandrino v.10 The seed of the political question doctrine was thus planted in Philippine soil.1 The importance of the issue at bar includes this humble separate opinion. the statute constitutes him the sole judge of the existence of those facts. The Court held that under the Jones Law. Avelino. the power of the Senate to punish its members for disorderly behavior does not authorize it to suspend an appointive member from the exercise of his office.

It declared that the Commission on Appointments is a creature of the Constitution and its power does not come from Congress but from the Constitution.jurisdiction over contests relating to their election. Lopez-Vito. questioned his successor's title claiming that the latter had been elected without a quorum. Congressman Sergio Osmena. Lopez-Vito. Pendatun. The petition was initially dismissed on the ground that the selection of Senate President was an internal matter and not subject to judicial review. invoked the power of review of this Court but the Court once more did not interfere with Congress' power to discipline its members. It rejected the Solicitor General's claim that the dispute involved a political question. the affirmative votes in favor of the proposed amendment would have been short of the necessary three-fourths vote in either House of Congress to pass the amendment. Jr. In Gonzales. In the 1960 case of Osmena v. Cuenco. Comelec26 abandoned Mabanag v.24 the Court passed judgment on whether Congress had formed the Commission on Appointments in accordance with the Constitution and found that it did not. Comelec25 and the 1971 case of Tolentino v. the Court refused to intervene citing Alejandrino and affirmed the inherent right of the legislature to determine who shall be admitted to its membership. To be sure. this Court characterizing the issue submitted thereto as a political one.22 It held that under the Constitution. the Court declared respondent Cuenco as the legally elected Senate President. Tan. Osmena. The 1967 case of Gonzales v. In the 1957 case of Tanada v.17 the Court followed the traditional line. Instead.16 petitioner.18 Senate President Jose Avelino. Lopez-Vito. Balagtas. it declared that the Senate is not clothed with "full discretionary authority" in the choice of members of the Senate Electoral Tribunal and the exercise of its power thereon is subject to constitutional limitations which are mandatory in nature. This Court refused to order his release holding that the process by which a contumacious witness is dealt with by the legislature is a necessary concomitant of the legislative process and the legislature's exercise of its discretionary authority is not subject to judicial interference. Jr. Again. assailed the legality of his detention ordered by the Senate for his refusal to answer questions put to him by members of one of its investigating committees. Jr. The amendment was eventually submitted to the people for ratification. In the 1962 case of Cunanan v. The question of whether or not Congress. Cuenco.21 the Court assumed jurisdiction over a dispute involving the formation and composition of the Senate Electoral Tribunal. The contours of the political question doctrine have always been tricky. the Court ruled that it could assume jurisdiction over the controversy in light of subsequent events justifying intervention among which was the existence of a quorum. In the 1947 case of Mabanag v. however.. was suspended by the House of Representatives for serious disorderly behavior for making a privilege speech imputing "malicious charges" against the President of the Philippines. a private citizen.19 On reconsideration. who was deposed and replaced.14 three Senators and eight representatives who were proclaimed elected by Comelec were not allowed by Congress to take part in the voting for the passage of the Parity amendment to the Constitution. 20Though the petition was ultimately dismissed. acting as a constituent assembly in proposing amendments to the Constitution violates the Constitution was held to be a justiciable and not a political issue.23 The Court then nullified the election to the Senate Electoral Tribunal made by Senators belonging to the party having the largest number of votes of two of their party members but purporting to act on behalf of the party having the second highest number of votes. the Court did not always stay its hand whenever the doctrine is invoked.15 In the 1955 case of Arnault v. In the 1949 case of Avelino v. declined to pass upon the question whether or not a given number of votes cast in Congress in favor of a proposed amendment to the Constitution-which was being submitted to the people for ratification-satisfied the three-fourths vote 204 . The Court declined to intervene and held that a proposal to amend the Constitution is a highly political function performed by Congress in its sovereign legislative capacity. If their votes had been counted. the Court ruled: "It is true that in Mabanag v. the membership of the Senate Electoral Tribunal was designed to insure the exercise of judicial impartiality in the disposition of election contests affecting members of the lawmaking body. returns and qualifications.

27 The Court explained that the power to amend the Constitution or to propose amendments thereto is not included in the general grant of legislative powers to Congress. Tanada v. it ruled that it was not intended by the Constitution that one branch of government could encroach upon the field of duty of the other. It held that the appointing power is the exclusive prerogative of the President.31 where it was held that the Governor-General. the members of Congress derive their authority from the fundamental law and they do not have the final say on whether their acts are within or beyond constitutional limits. upon which no limitations may be imposed by Congress. with which the judicial department of government has no intervention. we rejected the theory." 35 In Forties v. Quitoriano. Chief Accountant of the Senate. we held that the officers and employees of the Senate Electoral Tribunal are under its supervision and control. It was held that when the Legislature conferred upon the Governor-General powers and duties. It noted that sudden and unexpected conditions may arise. this Court proceeded to determine the number of Senators necessary for a quorum in the Senate. purporting to act on behalf of the party having the second largest number of votes therein. that the issues therein raised were political questions the determination of which is beyond judicial review. advanced in these four cases. Wood. such questions being many times reserved to those departments in the organic law of the state. by Senators belonging to the party having the largest number of votes in said chamber.36 the Court also refused to take cognizance of a case enjoining the Chief Executive from deporting an obnoxious alien whose continued presence in the Philippines was found by him to be injurious to the public interest. it did so for the reason that he was in a better position to know the needs of the country than any other member of the executive department. and this power continues to exist for the preservation of the peace and domestic tranquility of the nation.33 the Court held that the Governor-General could not be compelled by mandamus to produce certain vouchers showing the various expenditures of the Independence Commission. The force of this precedent has been weakened. The President's inherent power to deport undesirable aliens is universally denominated as political. and Macias v.32 Similarly.30 The Court hewed to the same line as regards the exercise of Executive power. this Court brushed aside the political question doctrine and assumed jurisdiction whenever it found constitutionally-imposed limits on the exercise of powers conferred upon the Legislature. Governor-General. Cuenco. of two (2) Senators belonging to the first party. As a constituent assembly. and with full confidence that he will perform such duties as his best judgment dictates.38 the Court also declined to interfere in the exercise of the President's appointing power. Under the principle of separation of powers. Tiaco. as members. 34 It observed that "the executive and legislative departments of government are frequently called upon to deal with what are known as political questions. in the third. in Abueva v. by Suanes v. In all such questions.requirement of the fundamental law. except those resulting from the need of securing concurrence of the Commission on Appointments and from the exercise of the limited 205 . Commission on Elections. we declared unconstitutional an act of Congress purporting to apportion the representative districts for the House of Representatives upon the ground that the apportionment had not been made as may be possible according to the number of inhabitants of each province. 37 In Manalang v. Mandamus and injunction could not lie to enforce or restrain a duty which is discretionary. for the second party. however. which demand immediate action. growing out of the presence of untrustworthy aliens. Thus. of the Senate Electoral Tribunal. could not be compelled by mandamus to call a special election in the town of Silay for the purpose of electing a municipal president. Cuenco. as claimed by the latter. in the second. Thus.28 This ruling was reiterated in Tolentino which held that acts of a constitutional convention called for the purpose of proposing amendments to the Constitution are at par with acts of Congress acting as a constituent assembly. not of that of the Senate President. In the first. and in the fourth. as head of the executive department. we nullified the election.29 In sum. the courts uniformly refused to intervene for the purpose of directing or controlling the actions of the other department. the respect accorded executive discretion was observed in Severino v. Avelino v. Each department has an exclusive field within which it can perform its part within certain discretionary limits.

still continues or has terminated. On whether the validity of the imposition of martial law was a political or justiciable question. One-half embraced the political question position and the other half subscribed to the justiciable position in Lansang. this Court has held that as Commander-inChief of the Armed Forces. In 1952.48 In 1983. The Court found that the PCO had the function of validating a person's detention for any of the offenses covered in Proclamation No.39 On the vital issue of how the Court may inquire into the President's exercise of power. 2045 which continued in force the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus.40 President Quirino suspended the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus for persons detained or to be detained for crimes of sedition. the Court found that the President did not. President's power to call out the militia which is a much broader power than suspension of the privilege of the writ. The Court. It held that the issuance of the PCO by the President was not subject to judicial inquiry.44 Using this yardstick. It ruled that it is within the province of the political department and not of the judicial department of government to determine when war is at end. According to the Court. as representative of the sovereign affecting the freedom of its subjects. The extent of the power which may be inquired into by courts is defined by these limitations. 43 We now come to the exercise by the President of his powers as Commander-in-Chief vis-a-vis the political question doctrine. The issue divided the Court down the middle. In Aquino. declared that the authority to decide whether the exigency has arisen requiring the suspension of the privilege belongs to the President and his decision is final and conclusive on the courts. and (2) when the public safety requires it. a majority also ruled that the decisive issue of whether the 1973 Constitution had come into force and effect. Enrile. Petitioners sought the issuance of a writ of habeas corpus. Executive Secretary45 showed that while a majority of the Court held that the issue of whether or not the 1973 Constitution had been ratified in accordance with the 1935 Constitution was justiciable.47 it upheld the President's declaration of martial law. Garcia came. Those adhering to the political question doctrine used different methods of approach to it.41 The emergency period of the 1970's flooded the Court with cases which raised the political question defense. v. These limits are: (1) that the privilege must not be suspended except only in cases of invasion. not to exercise the power vested in him or to determine the wisdom of his act. Enrile. insurrection or rebellion. Jr.49 The petitioners therein were arrested and detained by the Philippine Constabulary by virtue of a Presidential Commitment Order (PCO). could not be equated with that of the President of the Philippines dealing with the freedom of the sovereign Filipino people.42 Lansang reversed the previous cases and held that the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus was not a political question. and (2) the privilege was suspended by the American Governor-General whose act. the Court was almost evenly divided. in any of which events the same may be suspended wherever during such period the necessity for the The validity of the declaration of martial law by then President Marcos was next litigated before the Court.46 Barcelon was the ruling case law until the 1971 case of Lansang v. the Lansang ruling was weakened by the Court in Garcia-Padilla v. Javellana v.S. insurrection or rebellion or imminent danger thereof. the weight of Barcelon was diluted by two factors: (1) it relied heavily on Martin v. which involved the U. Castaneda. the Court decided the landmark case of Montenegro v. The Court declared that the power to suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus is neither absolute nor unqualified because the Constitution sets limits on the exercise of executive discretion on the matter. with or without constitutional ratification. Judicial inquiry is confined to the question of whether the President did not act arbitrarily. in the legal sense.legislative power to prescribe qualifications to a given appointive office. Mott. to ascertain whether the President has gone beyond the constitutional limits of his jurisdiction. was a political question. citing Barcelon. suspension shall exist. In the 1940's. it ruled that the function of the Court is not to supplant but merely to check the Executive. the President has the power to determine whether war.50 It went further by declaring that there was a need to 206 .

in the same manner. In case of invasion or rebellion. 207 . Article VII of the 1987 Constitution in light of our constitutional history. reject its laid back stance against acts constituting grave abuse of discretion on the part of any branch or instrumentality of government. and to determine whether or not there has been a grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction on the part of any branch or instrumentality of the Government. Article VIII in the draft Constitution. the people. extend such proclamation or suspension for a period to be determined by Congress.54 which reads: "Sec. and must promulgate its decision thereon within thirty days from its filing. 18. The Supreme Court may review. convene in accordance with its rules without need of a call. The first was the need to grant this Court the express power to review the exercise of the powers as commander-in-chief by the President and deny it of any discretion to decline its exercise. may revoke such proclamation or suspension. The President. They gave birth to EDSA. x x x. 53 It is now history that the improper reliance by the Court on the political question doctrine eroded the people's faith in its capacity to check abuses committed by the then Executive in the exercise of his commander-in-chief powers. particularly violations against human rights. within twenty-four hours following such proclamation or suspension. The second was the need to compel theCourt to be pro-active by expanding its jurisdiction and. the President shall submit a report in person or in writing to Congress. The Congress. Two lessons were not lost to the members of the Constitutional Commission that drafted the 1987 Constitution.re-examine Lansang with a view to reverting to Barcelon and Montenegro. Only after such a scrutiny can the court satisfy itself that the due process clause of the Constitution has been met. the President must be given absolute control for the very life of the nation and government is in great peril. thus. it intoned. in an appropriate proceeding filed by any citizen. 1. The Congress. The refusal of courts to be proactive in the exercise of its checking power drove the people to the streets to resort to extralegal remedies. is answerable only to his conscience. voting jointly. 51 But barely six (6) days after Garcia-Padilla. Enrile52 reiterating Lansang. Within forty-eight hours from the proclamation of martial law or the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus. the Court promulgated Morales. Jr. worked for the insertion of the second paragraph of Section 1. for a period not exceeding sixty days. v. the Court must inquire into every phase and aspect of a person's detention from the moment he was taken into custody up to the moment the court passes upon the merits of the petition. which revocation shall not be set aside by the President. Upon the initiative of the President. he may. shall." The language of the provision clearly gives the Court the power to strike down acts amounting to grave abuse of discretion of both the legislative and executive branches of government. when the public safety requires it. the sufficiency of the factual basis of the proclamation of martial law or the suspension of the privilege of the writ or the extension thereof. The provision states: "Sec. he may call out such armed forces to prevent or suppress lawless violence. if the invasion or rebellion shall persist and public safety requires it. a member of the Constitutional Commission. suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus or place the Philippines or any part thereof under martial law. if not in session. It held that by the power of judicial review. It observed that in times of war or national emergency. Then Chief Justice Roberto Concepcion. We should interpret Section 18. by a vote of at least a majority of all its Members in regular or special session. The President shall be the Commander-in-Chief of all armed forces of the Philippines and whenever it becomes necessary. Judicial power includes the duty of the courts of justice to settle actual controversies involving rights which are legally demandable and enforceable. and God. the Congress may. invasion or rebellion.

as Commanderin-Chief of the armed forces of the Philippines. It may be conceded that the calling out power may be a "lesser power" compared to the power to suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus and the power to declare martial law. It eliminated the discretion of the Court not to wield its power of review thru the use of the political question doctrine. these conditions lay down thesine qua requirement for the exercise of the power and the objective sought to be attained by the exercise of the power. ergo." calling out power by the President. the express grant simply stresses the mandatory duty of this Court to check the exercise of the commander-in-chief powers of the President. this Court cannot pass upon the validity of its exercise. I am not unaware that in the deliberations of the Constitutional Commission. In fine.57 It is true that the third paragraph of Section 18. its exercise cannot be left to the absolute discretion of the Chief Executive as Commander-in-Chief of the arm It must be borne in mind. 55 The proceedings of the Convention are less conclusive on the proper construction of the fundamental law than are legislative proceedings of the proper construction of a statute. 56 The conventional wisdom is that the Constitution does not derive its force from the convention which framed it. may call out the armed forces subject to two conditions: (1) whenever it becomes necessary. that while a member's opinion expressed on the floor of the Constitutional Convention is valuable.x x x. however. Given the light of our constitutional history. that just because the same provision did not grant to this Court the power to review the exercise of the 208 . invasion or rebellion. while in the former. the intent to be arrived at is that of the people. They define the constitutional parameters of the calling out power. it is not necessarily expressive of the people's intent. It is clear from the foregoing that the President." unlike the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus and the declaration of martial law. Article VII of the 1987 Constitution expressly gives the Court the power to review the sufficiency of the factual bases used by the President in the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus and the declaration of martial law. Whether or not there is compliance with these parameters is a justiciable issue and is not a political question. and (2) to prevent or suppress lawless violence. but from the people who ratified it. is not a justiciable issue but a political question and therefore not subject to judicial review. Even then. this express grant of power merely means that the Court cannot decline the exercise of its power because of the political question doctrine as it did in the past. courts seek to arrive at the intent of the people through the discussions and deliberations of their representatives. for in the latter case it is the intent of the legislature the courts seek. Undeniably. Commissioner Bernas opined that the President's exercise of the "calling out power. It does not follow. however.

. priests. CIRILO A. Office of the President. J. RENATO CORONA. and lay leaders who are committed to the cause of truth. nuns. EPHRAIM TENDERO.line lottery system. FELIPE L. except Senators Freddie Webb and EN BANC 209 . in his capacity as Assistant Executive Secretary and Chairman of the Presidential review Committee on the Lotto. JOKER P. CHRISTINE TAN. Oscar Karaan and Jedideoh Sincero for intervenors. and Felipe L. Jr. The rest of the petitioners. Salonga. Fernando Santiago. Petitioner Kilosbayan. INCORPORATED. pastors. 113375 May 5. and REP. justice. SALONGA. RAFAEL G. JR.R. SEN. FREDDIE WEBB. with a prayer for a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction. Gamaliel G. Emilio C. GOZON. EMILIO C. and PHILIPPINE GAMING MANAGEMENT CORPORATION. PHILIPPINE CHARITY SWEEPSTAKES OFFICE. and national renewal. CAPULONG. in his capacity as Executive Secretary. No. DOROMAL. Office of the President. RIGOS. WIGBERTO TAÑADA. JOVITO R. Jovito R. ARROYO. JR. FERNANDO SANTIAGO. VICTORINO. Cayetano and Eleazar B. JR. vs. DAVIDE. QUINTIN S. Reyes for PGMC. which seeks to prohibit and restrain the implementation of the "Contract of Lease" executed by the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) and the Philippine Gaming Management Corporation (PGMC) in connection with the on.: G. SEN. APOLO.. 1994 This is a special civil action for prohibition and injunction." KILOSBAYAN. also known as "lotto. Renato L. RAOUL V. Capulong.JOSE CUNANAN. respondents. FERNANDO. Bongco. ERME CAMBA. JOSE T. JOSE ABCEDE. Gozon for petitioners.petitioners. TEOFISTO GUINGONA. Incorporated (KILOSBAYAN) avers that it is a non-stock domestic corporation composed of civic-spirited citizens..

The lease shall be for a period not exceeding fifteen (15) years. . . xxx xxx xxx 1. All receipts from ticket sales shall be turned over directly to PCSO. xxx xxx xxx 1. operating expenses and expansion expenses and risks shall be for the exclusive account of the Lessor. "a multinational company and one of the ten largest public companies in Malaysia. thru its subsidiary. the PCSO formally issued a Request for Proposal (RFP) for the Lease Contract of an on-line lottery system for the PCSO. The Lessor shall be selected based on its technical expertise. 1169." with its "affiliate. terminals. Berjaya Group Berhad (through its individual nominees) organized with some Filipino investors in March 1993 a Philippine corporation known as the Philippine Gaming Management Corporation (PGMC). Sports Toto Malaysia.5. at its own expense. and the logistics to introduce the games to all the cities and municipalities of the country within five (5) years. as amended by B. are suing in their capacities as members of the Board of Trustees of KILOSBAYAN and as taxpayers and concerned citizens. softwares. Senators Webb and Tañada and Representative Arroyo are suing in their capacities as members of Congress and as taxpayers and concerned citizens of the Philippines. all the facilities ('Facilities') needed to operate and maintain a nationwide on-line lottery system. Pursuant to Section 1 of the charter of the PCSO (R." long "engaged in. Arroyo. successful lottery operations in Asia. The Lessor is expected to submit a comprehensive nationwide lottery development plan ("Development Plan") which will include the game." the PCSO decided to establish an on. The Lessor shall be a domestic corporation. All capital.4. PCSO is seeking a suitable contractor which shall build. 42) which grants it the authority to hold and conduct "charity sweepstakes races. Sometime before March 1993.line lottery system for the purpose of increasing its revenue base and diversifying its sources of funds.A. lotteries and other similar activities. the marketing of the games. the Berjaya Group Berhad.P." 1 Before August 1993. hardware and software capability.7.Wigberto Tañada and Representative Joker P.2." As an initial step. No. which "was intended to be the medium through which the technical and management services required for the project would be offered and delivered to PCSO. an American public company engaged in the international sale or provision of computer systems. PCSO shall lease the Facilities for a fixed percentage ofquarterly gross receipts. running both Lotto and Digit games. training and other technical services to the gaming industry.. and financial resources. 1. with 210 . EXECUTIVE SUMMARY xxx xxx xxx 1. The pleadings of the parties disclose the factual antecedents which triggered off the filing of this petition. The Development Plan shall have a substantial bearing on the choice of the Lessor. maintenance support. after learning that the PCSO was interested in operating an online lottery system. the International Totalizator Systems. Inc. 2 Relevant provisions of the RFP are the following: 1. Blg. among others. ." "became interested to offer its services and resources to PCSO.

The Proponent is expected to provide technology transfer to PCSO technical personnel.2. In addition. and the National Bureau of Investigation shall be authorized to use the nationwide telecommunications system of the Facilities Free of Charge. The printing of tickets shall be undertaken under the supervision and control of PCSO. the communications network and sales offices under a build-lease basis.2. the Master Games Plan is expected to include a Product Plan for each game and explain how each will be introduced into the market.2. the National Disaster Control Coordinating Council. Upon expiration of the lease. 4 7. GENERAL GUIDELINES FOR PROPONENTS xxx xxx xxx Finally. 1. THE LESSOR The Proponent is expected to furnish and maintain the Facilities.at least sixty percent (60%) of its shares owned by Filipino shareholders. the Proponent must be able to stand the acid test of proving that it is an entity able to take on the role of responsible maintainer of the on-line 211 . the Facilities shall be owned by PCSO without any additional consideration. especially geared to Filipino gaming habits and preferences. This will be an integral part of the Development Plan which PCSO will require from the Proponent.8. The Proponent is expected to formulate and design consumer-oriented Master Games Plan suited to the marketplace. xxx xxx xxx 2.4.2. The Facilities shall enable PCSO to computerize the entire gaming system. xxx xxx xxx The Proponent is expected to provide upgrades to modernize the entire gaming system over the life ofthe lease contract. the Philippine National Police. OBJECTIVES The objectives of PCSO in leasing the Facilities from a private entity are as follows: xxx xxx xxx 2. xxx xxx xxx The Office of the President. 3 xxx xxx xxx 2. Enable PCSO to operate a nationwide online Lottery system at no expense or risk to the government.4. DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE LESSOR xxx xxx xxx 2. including the personnel needed to operate the computers.

Ramos strongly opposing the setting up to the on-line lottery system on the basis of serious moral and ethical considerations. In his answer of 17 December 1993. approved it on 20 December 1993. expansion and replacement costs. and all other related expenses needed to operate nationwide on-line lottery system. terminals. the Executive Secretary informed KILOSBAYAN that the requested documents would be duly transmitted before the end of the month. 17 In view of their materiality and relevance. 5 xxx xxx xxx 16. printing costs. 9 On 21 October 1993." 10 This announcement was published in the Manila Standard. On 15 August 1993. per the press statement issued by the Office of the President. and able to achieve PSCO's goal of formalizing an on-line lottery system to achieve its mandated objective. maintenance costs. PGMC submitted its bid to the PCSO. KILOSBAYAN reiterated its vigorous opposition to the on-line lottery on account of its immorality and illegality. we quote the following salient provisions of the Contract of Lease: 1. computers. cost of salaries and wages. KILOSBAYAN sent an open letter to Presidential Fidel V." 14 On 1 December 1993. advertising and promotion expenses. nationwide telecommunication network. 7 The bids were evaluated by the Special Pre-Qualification Bids and Awards Committee (SPBAC) for the on-line lottery and its Bid Report was thereafter submitted to the Office of the President. 13 On 19 November 1993. "Malacañang will push through with the operation of an on-line lottery system nationwide" and that it is actually the respondent PCSO which will operate the lottery while the winning corporate bidders are merely "lessors. ticket sales offices. and fixtures. software. Philippine Daily Inquirer. DEFINITIONS The following words and terms shall have the following respective meanings: 212 . 11 On 4 November 1993. 8 The submission was preceded by complaints by the Committee's Chairperson. Dr. the media reported that despite the opposition. on that same date. Jr. the Office of the President announced that it had given the respondent PGMC the go-signal to operate the country's on-line lottery system and that the corresponding implementing contract would be submitted not later than 8 November 1993 "for final clearance and approval by the Chief Executive. security and insurance. However. Mita Pardo de Tavera. an agreement denominated as "Contract of Lease" was finally executed by respondent PCSO and respondent PGMC. DEFINITION OF TERMS Facilities: All capital equipment. and the Manila Times on 29 October 1993. KILOSBAYAN requested copies of all documents pertaining to the lottery award from Executive Secretary Teofisto Guingona. the PGMC claims that the Berjaya Group "undertook to reduce its equity stakes in PGMC to 40%. 12 At the meeting of the Committee on Games and Amusements of the Senate on 12 November 1993. 16 The President.lottery system. furnishings. 6 Considering the above citizenship requirement." by selling 35% out of the original 75% foreign stockholdings to local investors. 15.

xxx xxx xxx 1. Goodwill. software (including source codes for the On-Line Lottery application software for the terminals.00) submitted by the LESSOR to PCSO pursuant to the requirements of the Request for Proposals. 5. 3. and all other related expenses needed to operate an On-Line Lottery System.1 Rental Fee — Amount to be paid by PCSO to the LESSOR as compensation for the fulfillment of the obligations of the LESSOR under this Contract. 2. computers. intellectual property rights. but not limited to the lease of the Facilities. LEASE PERIOD The period of the lease shall commence ninety (90) days from the date of effectivity of this Contract and shall run for a period of eight (8) years thereafter. telecommunications and central systems). number of players. The LESSOR shall build. xxx xxx xxx xxx xxx xxx For and in consideration of the performance by the LESSOR of its obligations herein.000. value of winnings and the logistics required to introduce the games. security and insurance. advertising and promotion. All expenses relating to the setting-up. terminals. operation and maintenance of ticket sales offices of dealers and retailers shall be borne by PCSO's dealers and retailers. including the Master Games Plan as approved by PCSO. expansion and replacement. salaries and wages. including.8 Escrow Deposit — The proposal deposit in the sum of Three Hundred Million Pesos (P300. attached hereto as Annex "A". maintenance. 4.4 Maintenance and Other Costs — All costs and expenses relating to printing. RIGHTS AND OBLIGATIONS OF PCSO AS OPERATOR OF THE ON-LINE LOTTERY SYSTEM 213 . 1. SUBJECT MATTER OF THE LEASE 1. The LESSOR shall bear all Maintenance and Other Costs as defined herein. PCSO shall pay LESSOR a fixed Rental Fee equal to four point nine percent (4. which shall be for the account of the LESSOR. manpower. modified as necessary by the provisions of this Contract.3 Facilities — All capital equipment.9%) of gross receipts from ticket sales. franchise and similar fees shall belong to PCSO. on a semi-monthly basis.1. and furnishings and fixtures. the marketing thereof. unless sooner terminated in accordance with this Contract.5 Development Plan — The detailed plan of all games.000. furnish and maintain at its own expense and risk the Facilities for the OnLine Lottery System of PCSO in the Territory on an exclusive basis. payable net of taxes required by law to be withheld. technology. telecommunications network. RENTAL FEE 1.

5. 5.PCSO shall be the sole and individual operator of the On-Line Lottery System. and exclusive jurisdiction over. The Master Games Plan included in Annex "A" hereof is hereby approved by PCSO. the Master Games Plan of the LESSOR. which fixes a prize fund of fifty five percent (55%) on the average.9. 5. including but not limited to the design. 5. and 5.9. No. 5. regional and area offices.1 PCSO shall have sole responsibility to decide whether to implement. and taxes and levies (if any) chargeable to the operator of the On-Line Lottery System.2 Approvals for importation of the Facilities.7 PCSO shall promulgate procedural and coordinating rules governing all activities relating to the On-Line Lottery System.5 PCSO shall designate the necessary personnel to monitor and audit the daily performance of the On-Line Lottery System. The LESSOR will bear all other Maintenance and Other Costs.3 Approvals and consents for the On-Line Lottery System. including but not limited to its headquarters. After paying the Rental Fee to the LESSOR. fully or partially. all matters involving the operation of the On-Line Lottery System not otherwise provided in this Contract. as amended. PCSO shall have the sole responsibility to determine the time for introducing new games to the market.9. For this purpose. 5.4 Business and premises licenses for all offices of the 214 . 5. alternate site. PCSO shall have exclusive responsibility to determine the Revenue Allocation Plan. PCSO designees shall be given. 1169. in all offices of the LESSOR. 5. 5. Consequently: 5.1 Work permits for the LESSOR's staff.2 PCSO shall have control over revenues and receipts of whatever nature from the On-Line Lottery System. suitable and adequate space. that the same shall be consistent with the requirement of R.9. furniture and fixtures. and contents thereof.8 PCSO will be responsible for the payment of prize monies.3 PCSO shall have exclusive control over the printing of tickets. PCSO shall appoint the dealers and retailers in a timely manner with due regard to the implementation timetable of the On-Line Lottery System. Nothing herein shall preclude the LESSOR from recommending dealers or retailers for appointment by PCSO.A. free of charge. Provided.4 PCSO shall have sole responsibility over the appointment of dealers or retailers throughout the country. 5. text.4.9 PCSO shall assist the LESSOR in the following: 5. except as provided in Section 1. which shall act on said recommendation within forty-eight (48) hours.6 PCSO shall have the responsibility to resolve. commissions to agents and dealers.

Maintenance and Other Costs and: xxx xxx xxx 215 . and consequently. 6. if necessary. PCSO will be able to effectively take-over the Facilities and efficiently operate the On-Line Lottery System. and customary manner. 6. During the term of the lease. 6.7 Upon effectivity of this Contract. including but not limited to the cost of the Facilities.4 Duly pay and discharge all taxes. 6. orders and directives. and further compensate the LESSOR for loss of expected net profit after tax. 6. and as may be required by PCSO shall not impose such requirements unreasonably nor arbitrarily. 5.2 Maintain insurance coverage with insurers acceptable to PCSO on all Facilities.9 Bear all expenses and risks relating to the Facilities including. computed over the unexpired term of the lease. in breach of this Contract and through no fault of the LESSOR. replace and improve the Facilities from time to time as new technology develops. It is understood that the rights of the LESSOR are primarily those of a lessor of the Facilities. 6. 6. obligations and duties by which it is legally bound.1 Maintain and preserve its corporate existence. upgrade. DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE LESSOR The LESSOR is one of not more than three (3) lessors of similar facilities for the nationwide OnLine Lottery System of PCSO. statues.5 Keep all the Facilities in fail safe condition and. all rights involving the business aspects of the use of the Facilities are within the jurisdiction of PCSO. but not limited to.6 Provide PCSO with management terminals which will allow real-time monitoring of the OnLine Lottery System.8 Undertake a positive advertising and promotions campaign for both institutional and product lines without engaging in negative advertising against other lessors. and in any event not later than sixty (60) days. such that at the end of the term of this Contract. rules and regulations. reimburse the LESSOR the amount of its total investment cost associated with the On-Line Lottery System. PCSO shall promptly. commence the training of PCSO and other local personnel and the transfer of technology and expertise.3 Comply with all laws. the LESSOR shall. efficient. and conduct its business in an orderly. 6. in order to make the On-Line Lottery System more cost-effective and/or competitive.10 In the event that PCSO shall pre-terminate this Contract or suspend the operation of the OnLine Lottery System. rights and privileges. assessments and government charges now and hereafter imposed of whatever nature that may be legally levied upon it. 6. 6.LESSOR and licenses for the telecommunications network.

or sale of shares of stock by the present stockholders.1 The LESSOR is corporation duly organized and existing under the laws of the Republic of the Philippines. that such provinces have existing nodes. The minimum required Filipino equity participation shall not be impaired through voluntary or involuntary transfer.." and under the following PCSO schedule: xxx xxx xxx PCSO may. are insufficient to pay the entire prize money. disposition.12 Comply with procedural and coordinating rules issued by PCSO. 7. at the LESSOR's option. xxx xxx xxx xxx xxx xxx 10.4 The LESSOR has or has access to all the managerial and technical expertise to promptly and effectively carry out the terms of this Contract.10 Bear all risks if the revenues from ticket sales. and such lines are connected to Metro Manila. in respect of equipment supplied by the LESSOR.6. at its option. 7.. . REPRESENTATIONS AND WARRANTIES The LESSOR represents and warrants that: 7. Once a municipality or city is serviced by land lines of a licensed public telephone company. The voice facility will cover the four offices of the 216 . either of the LESSOR's proposals (or a combinations of both such proposals) attached hereto as Annex "B. on an annualized basis. authorized to collect and retain for its own account. . Provided. . require the LESSOR to establish the telecommunications network in accordance with the above Timetable in provinces where the LESSOR has not yet installed terminals. .. The LESSOR shall establish a telecommunications network that will connect all municipalities and cities in the Territory in accordance with. PCSO's approval shall not be unreasonably withheld. at least sixty percent (60%) of the outstanding capital stock of which is owned by Filipino shareholders. a security deposit from dealers and retailers. 7. 7. and is hereby.3 The LESSOR has or has access to all the financing and funding requirements to promptly and effectively carry out the terms of this Contract.11 Be. TELECOMMUNICATIONS NETWORK 6. in an amount determined with the approval of PCSO.. 6. then the obligation of the LESSOR to connect such municipality or city through a telecommunications network shall cease with respect to such municipality or city. .2 The LESSOR and its Affiliates have the full corporate and legal power and authority to own and operate their properties and to carry on their business in the place where such properties are now or may be conducted.

Provided. 15. deaths of.2 The LESSOR hereby covenants and agrees to indemnify and hold PCSO harmless from all liabilities. suits or losses caused by the LESSOR's fault or negligence. charges. expenses (including reasonable counsel fees) and costs on account of or by reason of any such death or deaths. at its own cost and expense.000. from any cause or causes whatsoever. at its cost and expense. and each city and municipality in the Territory except Metro Manila. that 217 . injury or injuries. National Disaster Control Coordinating Council. directly or indirectly. claims.1 The LESSOR shall at all times protect and defend. liabilities. dollar equivalent.00). 15. STOCK DISPERSAL PLAN Within two (2) years from the effectivity of this Contract. 16.S. to its U. the Performance Bond shall be reduced proportionately to the percentage of unencumbered terminals installed. the LESSOR shall cause itself to be listed in the local stock exchange and offer at least twenty five percent (25%) of its equity to the public. and shall be renewed to cover the duration of the Contract. its title to the facilities and PCSO's interest therein from and against any and all claims for the duration of the Contract until transfer to PCSO of ownership of the serviceable Facilities. PCSO from and against any and all liabilities and claims for damages and/or suits for or by reason of any 16. NON-COMPETITION The LESSOR shall not. or damages to property of any kind whatsoever.1 To ensure faithful compliance by the LESSOR with the terms of the Contract. its authorized agents or employees. the LESSOR shall secure a Performance Bond from a reputable insurance company or companies acceptable to PCSO. The facility shall be designed to handle four private conversations at any one time. or any injury or injuries to any person or persons. undertake any activity or business in competition with or adverse to the On-Line Lottery System of PCSO unless it obtains the latter's prior written consent thereto. xxx xxx xxx 13. and those cities and municipalities which have easy telephone access from these four offices. 16. SECURITY 14. However. 15. its subcontractors. caused by the LESSOR.000.2 The Performance Bond shall be in the initial amount of Three Hundred Million Pesos (P300.3 The LESSOR shall at all times protect and defend. HOLD HARMLESS CLAUSE 15. Voice calls from the four offices shall be transmitted via radio or VSAT to the remote municipalities which will be connected to this voice facility through wired network or by radio.Office of the President. Philippine National Police and the National Bureau of Investigation.

or 21.000.00) per city or municipality per month.1 The LESSOR is insolvent or bankrupt or unable to pay its debts. per city or municipality per every month of delay. 17. OWNERSHIP OF THE FACILITIES PCSO may terminate this Contract for any breach of the material provisions of this Contract. all unencumbered Facilities shall automatically become the property of PCSO without consideration and without need for further notice or demand by PCSO. . .000. 16. Provided.2.00). and rectify the breach within thirty (30) days. said termination to take effect upon receipt of written notice of termination by the LESSOR and failure to take remedial action within seven (7) days and cure or 218 . The Performance Bond shall likewise be forfeited in favor of PCSO.3 The LESSOR may at its option maintain its Escrow Deposit as the Performance Bond. by the amount of Twenty Thousand Pesos (P20.1 Except as may be provided in Section 17. 21. it shall be subject to an initial Penalty of Twenty Thousand Pesos (P20. the Facilities directly required for the On-Line Lottery System mentioned in Section 1. .3 shall automatically belong in full ownership to PCSO without any further consideration other than the Rental Fees already paid during the effectivity of the lease. including the following: 21.00). or 21. representation or warranty made or furnished by the LESSOR proved to be materially false or misleading. from written notice by PCSO of any wilfull or grossly negligent violation of the material terms and conditions of this Contract.3 Any material statement. that the Penalty shall increase. xxx xxx xxx 20. should the LESSOR fail to take remedial measures within seven (7) days. The penalty shall be deducted by PCSO from the rental fee.000. 17. every ninety (90) days. TERMINATION OF THE LEASE 17. whilst shall failure to comply persists. or proposes or makes a general assignment or an arrangement or compositions with or for the benefit of its creditors.2 Should the LESSOR fail to comply with the terms of the Timetables provided in Section 9 and 10.2 An order is made or an effective resolution passed for the winding up or dissolution of the LESSOR or when it ceases or threatens to cease to carry on all or a material part of its operations or business.000.the Performance Bond shall in no case be less than One Hundred Fifty Million Pesos (P150. PENALTIES After expiration of the term of the lease as provided in Section 4. stops or suspends or threatens to stop or suspend payment of all or a material part of its debts.

remedy the same within thirty (30) days from notice. Article XII of the Constitution. c) Under Section 11. a Congressional franchise is required before any person may be allowed to establish and operate said telecommunications system. company or entity". like the said telecommunications system." and the imminent implementation of the Contract of Lease in February 1994. like the PGMC. filed on 28 January 1994 this petition. KILOSBAYAN. establish and operate the on-line lotto and telecommunications systems. In support of the petition. the PCSO is prohibited from holding and conducting lotteries "in collaboration. is disqualified from operating a public service. 3846 and established jurisprudence. AND (B) ENTERING INTO THE SOCALLED "CONTRACT OF LEASE" WITH. ESTABLISHMENT AND OPERATION OF THE ON-LINE LOTTERY AND TELECOMMUNICATION SYSTEMS REQUIRED AND/OR AUTHORIZED UNDER THE SAID CONTRACT. association or joint venture with any person. AND THE PCSO GRAVELY ABUSE[D] THEIR DISCRETION AND/OR FUNCTIONS TANTAMOUNT TO LACK OF JURISDICTION AND/OR AUTHORITY IN RESPECTIVELY: (A) APPROVING THE AWARD OF THE CONTRACT TO. 7042) to install. a less than 60% Filipino-owned and/or controlled corporation. . 18 Petitioners submit that the PCSO cannot validly enter into the assailed Contract of Lease with the PGMC because it is an 219 .A. cancellation or termination of this Contract shall not relieve the LESSOR of any liability that may have already accrued hereunder. ACTING THROUGH RESPONDENTS EXECUTIVE SECRETARY AND/OR ASSISTANT EXECUTIVE SECRETARY FOR LEGAL AFFAIRS. association. . No. and d) Respondent PGMC is not authorized by its charter and under the Foreign Investment Act (R. X X THE OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT. CONSIDERING THAT: a) Under Section 1 of the Charter of the PCSO. the petitioners claim that: . RESPONDENT PGMC FOR THE INSTALLATION. Any suspension. b) Under Act No. with its co-petitioners. xxx xxx xxx Considering the denial by the Office of the President of its protest and the statement of Assistant Executive Secretary Renato Corona that "only a court injunction can stop Malacañang.

association. Furthermore. the petitioners pray that we issue a temporary restraining order and a writ of preliminary injunction commanding the respondents or any person acting in their places or upon their instructions to cease and desist from implementing the challenged Contract of Lease and. or joint venture between respondents PCSO and PGMC in the holding of the On-Line Lottery System. Finally. company or entity.P. that the issue on the "morality" of the lottery franchise granted to the PCSO is political and not judicial or legal. 3846. and spirit of Republic Act 1169. In its Comment filed on 1 March 1994." 23 In their Comment filed by the Office of the Solicitor General. Jr. 42. as shown by paragraph EIGHT of its Articles of Incorporation. as amended by B. and that the "petitioners do not appear to have the legal standing or real interest in the subject contract and in obtaining the reliefs sought. public respondents Executive Secretary Teofisto Guingona. which the petitioners even consider as an "indispensable requirement" of an on-line lottery system." It further claims that as an independent contractor for a piece of work."19 The petitioners also point out that paragraph 10 of the Contract of Lease requires or authorizes PGMC to establish a telecommunications network that will connect all the municipalities and cities in the territory.A. association or joint venture' with PGMC — as such statutory limitation is viewed from the context. be granted a franchise for that purpose because of Section 11. Article XII of the 1987 Constitution. 42. Assistant Executive Secretary Renato Corona.arrangement wherein the PCSO would hold and conduct the online lottery system in "collaboration" or "association" with the PGMC.P. it states that the execution and implementation of the contract does not violate the Constitution and the laws. Blg. as amended by B. in violation of Section 1(B) of R. as amended. therefore.A. which prohibits the PCSO from holding and conducting charity sweepstakes races." and that there are terms and conditions of the Contract "showing that respondent PGMC is the actual lotto operator and not respondent PCSO.. and the PCSO maintain that the contract of lease in question does not violate Section 1 of R. as amended by Batas Pambansa 42. of the Contract of Lease clearly shows that there is a "collaboration. No. 'in collaboration. however. it is neither engaged in "gambling" nor in "public service" relative to the telecommunications network. association or joint venture with any person." it cannot lawfully enter into the contract in question because all forms of gambling — and lottery is one of them — are included in the socalled foreign investments negative list under the Foreign Investments Act (R. and (2) as such independent contractor. No. private respondent PGMC asserts that "(1) [it] is merely an independent contractor for a piece of work. the petitioners insist that the Articles of Incorporation of PGMC do not authorize it to establish and operate an on-line lottery and telecommunications systems. nor is PCSO sharing its franchise. establish.. 21 Accordingly. Blg. 22 We required the respondents to comment on the petition.A. install. that we render judgment declaring the Contract of Lease void and without effect and making the injunction permanent. 220 . 7042) where only up to 40% foreign capital is allowed. or operate the network pursuant to Section 1 of Act No. PGMC is a 75% foreignowned or controlled corporation and cannot. No. PGMC is not a co-operator of the lottery franchise with PCSO. 1169. foreign or domestic. and that the petitioner's interpretation of the phrase "in collaboration. which should be ventilated in another forum.e. 20 Finally." an analysis. association. since "the subscribed foreign capital" of the PGMC "comes to about 75%. after hearing the merits of the petition. Moreover. and other similar activities "in collaboration." Even granting arguendo that a lease of facilities is not within the contemplation of "collaboration" or "association. lotteries. 1169. However. PGMC cannot do that because it has no franchise from Congress to construct. (i. intent. the building and maintenance of a lottery system to be used by PCSO in the operation of its lottery franchise).

" With respect to the challenged Contract of Lease. In the deliberation on this case on 26 April 1994. Ramon Revilla." said contract "can be categorized as a contract for a piece of work as defined in Articles 1467. moreover. however. in "strict technical and legal sense. sharing of profits and losses. the seven Justices were of the opinion that the Contract of Lease 221 . Thereafter. Reyes. Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office. 27 but only the motion of Senators Alberto Romulo. the petitioners filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on 29 March 1994 a petition against PGMC for the nullification of the latter's General Information Sheets. That case." and it has been held that where the facilities are operated "not for business purposes but for its own use." a legislative franchise is not required before a certificate of public convenience can be granted. and. we heard the parties in oral arguments. and that the issues of "wisdom." Finally. that the Articles of Incorporation of PGMC authorize it to enter into the Contract of Lease." On the first issue. morality and propriety of acts of the executive department are beyond the ambit of judicial review. and (b) the legality and validity of the Contract of Lease in the light of Section 1 of R. and Jose Lina28 was granted. strained and utterly devoid of logic" for it "ignores the reality that PCSO. Francisco Tatad." They also argue that the contract does not violate the Foreign Investment Act of 1991. which prohibits the PCSO from holding and conducting lotteries "in collaboration. association. pursuant to Albano S.association or joint venture" in Section 1 is "much too narrow. and operate the service". Vicente Sotto III. citing our resolution in Valmonte vs." They further claim that the establishment of the telecommunications system stipulated in the Contract of Lease does not require a congressional franchise because PGMC will not operate a public utility. we resolved to consider the matter submitted for resolution and pending resolution of the major issues in this case. and the respondents were required to comment on their petition in intervention. the public respondents allege that the petitioners have no standing to maintain the instant suit. as amended by B. 26 Several parties filed motions to intervene as petitioners in this case. John Osmeña. Arturo Tolentino. in any case. 1169. which the public respondents and PGMC did. PGMC's "establishment of a telecommunications system is not intended to establish a telecommunications business. In the meantime. while six voted not to. whether domestic or foreign. "PGMC's establishment of the telecommunications system stipulated in its contract of lease with PCSO falls within the exceptions under Section 1 of Act No.P. to issue a temporary restraining order commanding the respondents or any person acting in their place or upon their instructions to cease and desist from implementing the challenged Contract of Lease." What the PCSO charter "seeks to prohibit is that arrangement akin to a "joint venture" or partnership where there is "community of interest in the business. is vested with the basic and essential prerogative to enter into all kinds of transactions or contracts as may be necessary for the attainment of its purposes and objectives.A." a characteristic which does not obtain in a contract of lease. On 11 April 1994. as a corporate entity. On the second issue. seven Justices voted to sustain the locus standi of the petitioners. 42. association or joint venture with any person. 1713 and 1644 of the Civil Code. 3846 where a legislative franchise is not necessary for the establishment of radio stations. 24 Even granting arguendo that PGMC is a public utility. company or entity. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. 25 "it can establish a telecommunications system even without a legislative franchise because not every public utility is required to secure a legislative franchise before it could establish. and a mutual right of control. maintain. we resolved to consider only these issues: (a) the locus standi of the petitioners. has no bearing in this petition. the "role of PGMC is limited to that of a lessor of the facilities" for the on-line lottery system. No. Blg.

L-2821). The other petitioners as members of the bar and officers of the court cannot be considered as devoid of "any personal and substantial interest" on the matter. In the landmark Emergency Powers Cases. Cohen." Insofar as taxpayers' suits are concerned. with their claim that what petitioners possess "is an interest which is shared in common by other people and is comparatively so minute and indeterminate as to afford any basis and assurance that the judicial process can act on it. aspects of the totality of the legal order. The Chief Justice took no part because one of the Directors of the PCSO is his brother-in-law. v. Commission on Elections [L40004. the barrier thus set up if not breached has definitely been lowered. This case was then assigned to this ponente for the writing of the opinion of the Court. No. would hard back to the American Supreme Court doctrine in Mellon v. Cuenco. As was so well put by Jaffe. G. or will sustain. brushing aside. indeed. conversely.violates the exception to Section 1(B) of R. foreshadowed by the very decision of People v. Private and public interests are. therefore. both in a substantive and procedural sense. 32 this Court declared: 1. 42. Secretary of Public Works." 31 In De La Llana vs. set aside in view of the importance of the issues raised. this Court had declared that it "is not devoid of discretion as to whether or not it should be entertained." That is to speak in the language of a bygone era. petitioners have convincingly shown that in their capacity as taxpayers. even in the United States. I do not think we are prepared to take that step.R. 1169. 222 . There is relevance to this excerpt from a separate opinion in Aquino.P. technicalities of procedure. direct injury as a result of its enforcement [Ibid. January 31. The six Justices stated that they wished to express no opinion thereon in view of their stand on the first issue. be resolved in their favor. Vera where the doctrine was first fully discussed. 56 (1937)]. as amended by B. 89]. if we act differently now. "The protection of private rights is an essential constituent of public interest and. their standing to sue has been amply demonstrated. Vera [65 Phil. The preliminary issue on the locus standi of the petitioners should. he certainly falls within the principle set forth in Justice Laurel's opinion in People vs. 62 SCRA 275]: "Then there is the attack on the standing of petitioners." Moreover. As far as Judge de la Llana is concerned. without a well-ordered state there could be no enforcement of private rights. The argument as to the lack of standing of petitioners is easily resolved. Blg. Alba. Respondents. A party's standing before this Court is a procedural technicality which it may. invalid and contrary to law. This is to conjure the specter of the public right dogma as an inhibition to parties intent on keeping public officials staying on the path of constitutionalism. No. as vindicating at most what they consider a public right and not protecting their rights as individuals. Thus: "The unchallenged rule is that the person who impugns the validity of a statute must have a personal and substantial interest in the case such that he has sustained. Frothingham. (Avelino vs." 30 or that it "enjoys an open discretion to entertain the same or not. There would be a retreat from the liberal approach followed in Pascual v. Jr. however. For as Chief Justice Warren clearly pointed out in the later case of Flast v. if we must. and is. 1975. 29 this Court brushed aside this technicality because "the transcendental importance to the public of these cases demands that they be settled promptly and definitely.A. in the exercise of its discretion.

. Inc. it is still within the wide discretion of the Court to waive the requirement and so remove the impediment to its addressing and resolving the serious constitutional questions raised. Federal Power Commission and Virginia Rea Association vs. to determine whether or not the other branches of government have kept themselves within the limits of the Constitution and the laws and that they have not abused the discretion given to them. they are not covered by the definition. Singson. brushing aside. . if we must. And even if. 35 it declared: With particular regard to the requirement of proper party as applied in the cases before us. to set out the divergent grounds in support of standing in these cases. preclude a single opinion of the Court as to both petitioners. Federal Power Commission. In United States vs. the solution of whose problems is in any event more or less determined by the specific circumstances of individual situations. For another. (Emphasis supplied) In Daza vs. and in keeping with the Court's duty. 223 ." The same policy has since then been consistently followed by the Court. [Ex ParteLevitt. as in Gonzales vs. We have since then applied this exception in many other cases.In Kapatiran ng mga Naglilingkod sa Pamahalaan ng Pilipinas. 37 it held: We hold that petitioners have standing. we hold that the same is satisfied by the petitioners and intervenors because each of them has sustained or is in danger of sustaining an immediate injury as a result of the acts or measures complained of. 34 this Court stated: Objections to taxpayers' suits for lack of sufficient personality standing or interest are. ordinary citizens and taxpayers were allowed to question the constitutionality of several executive orders issued by President Quirino although they were invoking only an indirect and general interest shared in common with the public. Secretary of Agrarian Reform. Tan. technicalities of procedure. Commission on Elections [21 SCRA 774] . this Court has brushed aside technicalities of procedure and has taken cognizance of these petitions. 33 reiterated in Basco vs. in the main procedural matters. In the first Emergency Powers Cases. 303 US 633]. technicalities of procedure. "the transcendental importance to the public of these cases demands that they be settled promptly and definitely. The Federal Supreme Court of the United States of America has also expressed its discretionary power to liberalize the rule on locus standi. vs. vs. we have early as in the Emergency Powers Cases that where serious constitutional questions are involved. Philippine Amusements and Gaming Corporation. under the 1987 Constitution. Differences of view. and in Association of Small Landowners in the Philippines. Considering the importance to the public of the cases at bar. The Court dismissed the objective that they were not proper parties and ruled that the transcendental importance to the public of these cases demands that they be settled promptly and definitely. if we must. . . however. brushing aside. however. 36 this Court once more said: . Inc. strictly speaking. It would not further clarification of this complicated specialty of federal jurisdiction.

47 (e) the decisions. their undersecretaries.A. or orders of various government agencies or instrumentalities. 284. Commission on Elections. 224 . and non-profit civic organizations were allowed to initiate and prosecute actions before this Court to question the constitutionality or validity of laws. 45 (c) the bidding for the sale of the 3. and order. 49 (g) Executive Order No.179 square meters of land at Roppongi. ordinary taxpayers. No. and conduct the referendum-plebiscite on 16 October 1976. a personal or substantial interest. 991 and 1033 insofar as they proposed amendments to the Constitution and P. control. The ramifications of such issues immeasurably affect the social. Tokyo. establishing the Philippine National Police. 43 Other cases where we have followed a liberal policy regarding locus standi include those attacking the validity or legality of (a) an order allowing the importation of rice in the light of the prohibition imposed by R." we brushed aside the procedural infirmity "considering the importance of the issue involved. 48 (f) the orders of the Energy Regulatory Board of 5 and 6 December 1990 on the ground that the hearings conducted on the second provisional increase in oil prices did not allow the petitioner substantial crossexamination. 39 (c) the automatic appropriation for debt service in the General Appropriations Act. 3452. 6975. by district.A. and petitioner alleging abuse of discretion and violation of the Constitution by respondent. Commissioner of Customs. And now on the substantive issue.00 per liter of imported oil products. Minato-ku. Commissioner of Internal Revenue. 1031 insofar as it directed the COMELEC to supervise. 1869 (the charter of the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation) on the ground that it is contrary to morals. The issues it raised are of paramount public interest and of a category even higher than those involved in many of the aforecited cases. 53 this Court. orders. of the number of elective members of Sanggunians. 40 (d) R. 51 and (i) memorandum orders issued by a Mayor affecting the Chief of Police of Pasay City. decisions. No. 46 (d) the approval without hearing by the Board of Investments of the amended application of the Bataan Petrochemical Corporation to transfer the site of its plant from Bataan to Batangas and the validity of such transfer and the shift of feedstock from naphtha only to naphtha and/or liquefied petroleum gas. members of Congress. rulings.A. No. public policy. We did no less in De Guia vs. Secretary of Finance.05 per barrel of imported crude oil and P1. 50 (h) resolutions of the Commission on Elections concerning the apportionment. concerning as it does the political exercise of qualified voters affected by the apportionment. issued by President Corazon C. and the Fiscal Incentives Review Board exempting the National Power Corporation from indirect tax and duties. No. rulings. a standing in law. Nos. although we declared that De Guia "does not appear to have locus standi. this Court hereby brushes aside the procedural barrier which the respondents tried to take advantage of. 38 (b) Executive Order No. hold. which allowed members of the cabinet.D.95 per liter or P151.A. 52 In the 1975 case of Aquino vs. COMELEC 54 where. Aquino on 25 July 1987. acts. and moral well-being of the people even in the remotest barangays of the country and the counterproductive and retrogressive effects of the envisioned on-line lottery system are as staggering as the billions in pesos it is expected to raise.In line with the liberal policy of this Court on locus standi. economic. 44 (b) P. despite its unequivocal ruling that the petitioners therein had no personality to file the petition. resolved nevertheless to pass upon the issues raised because of the far-reaching implications of the petition. 41 (d) R. in the exercise of its sound discretion. No. No.A. Among such cases were those assailing the constitutionality of (a) R. 42 and (f) R.D. and assistant secretaries to hold other government offices or positions. and resolutions of the Executive Secretary. 7056 on the holding of desynchronized elections. 3836 insofar as it allows retirement gratuity and commutation of vacation and sick leave to Senators and Representatives and to elective officials of both Houses of Congress. Japan." We find the instant petition to be of transcendental importance to the public. and even association of planters. The legal standing then of the petitioners deserves recognition and. 478 which levied a special duty of P0.

Blg. 42 originated from Parliamentary Bill No. hereinafter designated the Office. in such frequency and manner. medical assistance and services and charities of national character. whether domestic or foreign." the PCSO cannot exercise it "in collaboration. The original text of paragraph B. to engage in health and welfarerelated investments. as amended. 622 reads as follows: To engage in any and all investments and related profit-oriented projects or programs and activities by itself or in collaboration. 42. 1169. including the expansion of existing ones." B. lotteries and other similar activities. association. 622. This is the unequivocal meaning and import of the phrase "except for the activities mentioned in the preceding paragraph (A). as shall be determined." namely." Section 1 provides: Sec. by itself or in collaboration. as amending by B. and/or charitable grants: Provided. and subject to such rules and regulations as shall be promulgated by the Board of Directors. company or entity. association. lotteries and other similar activities. "charity sweepstakes races. association or joint venture with any person. lotteries and other similar activities. programs.Section 1 of R. The Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office. 55 225 . and shall have the authority: A. — The Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office. shall be the principal government agency for raising and providing for funds for health programs. company or entity. B. association. for the main purpose of raising funds for health and medical assistance and services and charitable grants.P. No. 103 as reported out by the Committee on Socio-Economic Planning and Development of the Interim Batasang Pambansa. (emphasis supplied) The language of the section is indisputably clear that with respect to its franchise or privilege "to hold and conduct charity sweepstakes races. company or entity. association or joint venture with any person. Blg.A. 1. association or joint venture with any person. projects and activities which may be profitoriented. which was covered by Committee Report No. To hold and conduct charity sweepstakes races. That such investment will not compete with the private sector in areas where investments are adequate as may be determined by the National Economic and Development Authority. and as such shall have the general powers conferred in section thirteen of Act Numbered One thousand four hundred fifty-nine. except for the activities mentioned in the preceding paragraph (A). prohibits the PCSO from holding and conducting lotteries "in collaboration. whether domestic or foreign.P. whether domestic or foreign. for the purpose of providing for permanent and continuing sources of funds for health programs. Subject to the approval of the Minister of Human Settlements. Section 1 of Parliamentary Bill No. association or joint venture" with any other party. medical assistance and services.

During the period of committee amendments. Mr. We accept the amendment. including the expansion of existing ones. MR. The gentleman from Cebu is recognized. Thank you. programs. it should read as follows: amendment would be to insert after "foreign" in the amendment just read the following: EXCEPT FOR THE ACTIVITY IN LETTER (A) ABOVE. Zamora. company or entity. Speaker. Before the motion of Assemblyman Zamora for the approval of the amendment could be acted upon. as amended. by itself or in collaboration. Subject to the approval of the Minister of Human Settlements. projects and activities which may be profit. medical assistance and services and/or charitable grants. May I introduce an amendment to the committee amendment? The THE SPEAKER. association. introduced an amendment by substitution to the said paragraph B such that. or joint venture with any person. to engage in health-oriented investments. Mr. MR. DAVIDE. association. DAVIDE.oriented. 56 When it is joint venture or in collaboration with any entity such collaboration or joint venture must not include activity activity letter (a) which is the holding and conducting of sweepstakes races. the Committee on Socio-Economic Planning and Development. whether domestic or foreign. Mr. Speaker. ZAMORA. DAVIDE. for the purpose of providing for permanent and continuing sources of funds for health programs. THE SPEAKER. MR. Speaker. lotteries and other similar acts. Assemblyman Davide introduced an amendment to the amendment: MR. 226 . through Assemblyman Ronaldo B.

A. Animus hominis est anima scripti. or other similar activities is a franchise granted by the legislature to the PCSO. On the other hand." 60 It may also be pointed out that the franchise granted to the PCSO to hold and conduct lotteries allows it to hold and conduct a species of gambling. No. It is a settled rule that "in all grants by the government to individuals or corporations of rights. No interpretation of the said provision to relax or circumvent the prohibition can be allowed since the privilege to hold or conduct charity sweepstakes races. lotteries. the word PRECEDING was inserted before PARAGRAPH. We are neither convinced nor moved or fazed by the insistence and forceful arguments of the PGMC that it does not because in reality it is only an independent contractor for a piece of work. It has been said that "the rights and privileges conferred under a franchise may. which prohibits the PCSO from holding and conducting lotteries "in collaboration. 1169. When Assemblyman Zamora read the final text of paragraph B as further amended. the PCSO cannot share its franchise with another by way of collaboration. Section 1 of R.. In order to give life or effect to an instrument. is approved.P. and he cannot enlarge it by equivocal or doubtful provisions or by probable inferences. and by virtue of the amendment introduced by Assemblyman Emmanuel Pelaez. Whatever is not unequivocally granted is withheld. Blg. [o]ne who claims a franchise or privilege in derogation of the common rights of the public must prove his title thereto by a grant which is clearly and definitely expressed. notwithstanding its denomination or designation as a (Contract of Lease). exception that an existing right of assignment cannot be impaired by subsequent legislation. the words are to be taken most strongly against the grantee . which may be gathered from the provisions of the contract itself. association or joint venture. without doubt. privileges and franchises. Blg. association or joint venture with" another? We agree with the petitioners that it does. or is authorized by statute. No. the earlier approved amendment of Assemblyman Davide became "EXCEPT FOR THE ACTIVITIES MENTIONED IN PARAGRAPH (A)". by the exception explicitly made in paragraph B. the new paragraph B was approved. Nothing passes by mere implication. i.. as amended by B." 59 In short then. It is settled that "a statute which authorizes the carrying on of a gambling activity or business should be strictly construed and every reasonable doubt so resolved as to limit the powers and rights claimed under its authority.A. The intention of the party is the soul of the instrument. the building and maintenance of a lottery system to be used by the PCSO in the operation of its lottery franchise. such as a public utilities commission. 42. 57 Further amendments to paragraph B were introduced and approved. the right of transfer or assignment may be restricted by statute or the constitution. it is essential to look to the intention of the 227 .P. 58 This is now paragraph B.e. as amended by B. be assigned or transferred when the grant is to the grantee and assigns. Section 1 of its charter. 42.. Thereafter." 61 Does the challenged Contract of Lease violate or contravene the exception in Section 1 of R. Whether the contract in question is one of lease or whether the PGMC is merely an independent contractor should not be decided on the basis of the title or designation of the contract but by the intent of the parties. Neither can it assign. or lease such franchise.. Assemblyman Pelaez introduced other amendments. as amended. transfer.Is there any objection to the amendment? (Silence) The amendment. 1169. or be made subject to the approval of the grantor or a governmental agency.

their contemporaneous and subsequent acts shall be principally considered." To put it more bluntly. exists between the contracting parties. pursuant to Article 1371 of the Civil Code. from the very inception." The PCSO. the PCSO had nothing but its franchise. expansion and replacement costs. the Berjaya Group Berhad. with the rest. upon learning of the PCSO's decision. The words Gaming and Management in the corporate name of respondent Philippine Gaming Management Corporation 228 . it would have it "at no expense or risks to the government. then. As admitted by the PGMC." Because of these serious constraints and unwillingness to bear expenses and assume risks. . the PCSO and the PGMC mutually understood that any arrangement between them would necessarily leave to the PGMC the technical. the marketing of the games. since it is a government-owned and controlled agency. and that the operation of the on-line lottery system should be "at no expense or risk to the government" — meaning itself. however. software. and submit "a comprehensive nationwide lottery development plan . which will include the game. security and insurance. it organized the PGMC as "a medium through which the technical and management services required for the project would be offered and delivered to PCSO. at the most. . primarily. all the facilities needed to operate and maintain" the system. It requires a community of interest in the performance of the subject matter. no one should be deceived by the title or designation of a contract. and all other related expenses needed to operate a nationwide on-line lottery system. the PCSO was candid enough to state in its RFP that it is seeking for "a suitable contractor which shall build. and management aspects of the on-line lottery system while the PCSO would. which it solemnly guaranteed it had in the General Information of the RFP.individual who executed it." In short." 66 Undoubtedly. with its affiliates. generally all contribute assets and share risks. at its own expense. or joint venture. in the least.Collaboration is defined as the acts of working together in a joint project. the Berjaya Group Berhad knew all along that in connection with an on-line lottery system. wanted to offer its services and resources to the PCSO. which may be altered by agreement to share both in profit and losses. and that although it wished to have the system. It could be for this reason that it warned that "the proponent must be able to stand to the acid test of proving that it is an entity able to take on the role of responsible maintainer of the on-line lottery system. ticket sales offices. A careful analysis and evaluation of the provisions of the contract and a consideration of the contemporaneous acts of the PCSO and PGMC indubitably disclose that the contract is not in reality a contract of lease under which the PGMC is merely an independent contractor for a piece of work. and the logistics to introduce the game to all the cities and municipalities of the country within five (5) years". advertising and promotions expenses. 65 The contemporaneous acts of the PCSO and the PGMC reveal that the PCSO had neither funds of its own nor the expertise to operate and manage an on-line lottery system. nationwide telecommunications network. operating expenses and expansion expenses and risks". 64 Joint venture is defined as an association of persons or companies jointly undertaking some commercial enterprise. 67Howsoever viewed then. 62 And. 63 Association means the act of a number of persons in uniting together for some special purpose or business. a right to direct and govern the policy in connection therewith. exclusively bear "all capital. printing costs. "to determine the intention of the contracting parties. furnishings and fixtures. including the risks of the business. The facilities referred to means "all capital equipment. being borne by the proponent or bidder. provide the franchise. maintenance costs. operations. terminals. during which time it is assured of a "rental" which shall not exceed 12% of gross receipts. makes it clear in its RFP that the proponent can propose a period of the contract which shall not exceed fifteen years. and duty. the only contribution the PCSO would have is its franchise or authority to operate the on-line lottery system. but one where the statutorily proscribedcollaboration or association. computers. Forthwith. costs of salaries and wages.

The latter simply means that. payable net of taxes required by law to be withheld. to provide a built-in defense in the event that the agreement is questioned as violative of the exception in Section 1 (B) of the PCSO's charter." This risk-bearing 229 . in extreme cases. such that at the end of the term of the contract. the PGMC is under obligation to keep all the Facilitiesin safe condition and if necessary. too. Consistent with the above observations on the RFP. It is outstanding for its careful and meticulous drafting designed to give an immediate impression that it is a contract of lease. Yet. the PGMC may. the managers. recommend for appointment dealers and retailers which shall be acted upon by the PCSO within fortyeight hours and collect and retain. replace. salaries and wages. Of course. After eight years. However. including the Master Games Plan.68 And. The so-called Contract of Lease is not. advertising and promotion. security and insurance. the PGMC has the initial prerogative to prepare the detailed plan of all games and the marketing thereof. Nevertheless. technicians or employees of the PCSO. and all other related expenses needed to operate the on-line lottery system. And. nevertheless. undertake a positive advertising and promotions campaign for both institutional and product lines without engaging in negative advertising against other lessors. are insufficient to pay the entire prize money. while the PCSO has the sole responsibility over the appointment of dealers and retailers throughout the country. For these reasons. for a period of eight years. and improve them from time to time as new technology develops to make the on-line lottery system more cost-effective and competitive. Of course. but not limited to the lease of the Facilities.9% of gross receipts from ticket sales. indeed. and to train PCSO and other local personnel and to effect the transfer of technology and other expertise. the RFP cannot substitute for the Contract of Lease which was subsequently executed by the PCSO and the PGMC. bear the salaries and related costs of skilled and qualified personnel for administrative and technical operations. upgrade. exclusively bear all costs and expenses relating to the printing. including. Its denomination as such is a crafty device. on an annualized basis. the Contract of Lease incorporates their intention and understanding. This joint venture is further established by the following: (a) Rent is defined in the lease contract as the amount to be paid to the PGMC as compensation for the fulfillment of its obligations under the contract. carefully conceived. for its own account.could not have been conceived just for euphemistic purposes. comply with procedural and coordinating rulesissued by the PCSO. and determine the number of players. the PCSO has only its franchise to offer. the PCSO will be able to effectively take over the Facilities and efficiently operate the on-line lottery system. Although it is stated to be 4. value of winnings. the PCSO would automatically become the owner of the Facilities without any other further consideration. maintenance. it may be drastically reduced or. manpower. but of the PGMC and that it is only after the expiration of the contract that the PCSO will operate the system. and the logistics required to introduce the games. what it purports to be. nothing may be due or demandable at all because the PGMC binds itself to "bear all risks if the revenue from the ticket sales. expansion and replacement. woven therein are provisions which negate its title and betray the true intention of the parties to be in or to have a joint venture for a period of eight years in the operation and maintenance of the on-line lottery system. the PCSO has the reserved authority to disapprove them. while the PGMC represents and warrants that it has access to all managerial and technical expertise to promptly and effectively carry out the terms of the contract. therefore. this rent is not actually a fixed amount. The acuity or skill of its draftsmen to accomplish that purpose easily manifests itself in the Contract of Lease. a security deposit from dealers and retailers in respect of equipment supplied by it. technicians or employees who shall operate the on-line lottery system are not managers.

at its option.000. increasing public participation in the corporation would enhance public interest. as amended by B. birth and growth of the on-line lottery. as well as the "Hold Harmless Clause" of the Contract of Lease. The first further confirms that it is the PGMC which will operate the system and the PCSO may. which it may. In a manner of speaking. In the final analysis. including but not limited to the cost of the Facilities. or if it stops or suspends or threatens to stop or suspend payment of all or a material part of its debts. in the light of the PCSO's RFP and the above highlighted provisions. If the PGMC is merely a lessor. each is wed to the other for better or for worse. The second admits thecoordinating and cooperative powers and functions of the parties. computed over the unexpired term of the lease. and. therefore. reimburse the Lessor the amount of its total investment cost associated with the On-Line Lottery System. with each having a right in the formulation and implementation of policies related to the business and sharing. Section 1 of R. and management of the On-Line Lottery System.000. conduct. the payment of the expected profits or rentals for the unexpired portion of the term of the contract would be enough. invalid for 230 . for the protection of its interest.provision is unusual in a lessor-lessee relationship. (f) The PCSO shall designate the necessary personnel to monitor and audit the daily performance of the on-line lottery system. operation. No. We thus declare that the challenged Contract of Lease violates the exception provided for in paragraph B. cause itself to be listed in the local stock exchange and offer at least 25% of its equity to the public. Blg. in its profits. and in any event not later than sixty (60) days. maintain as its initial performance bond required to ensure its faithful compliance with the terms of the contract. and within two years from the effectivity of the contract. (g) The PCSO may validly terminate the contract if the PGMC becomes insolvent or bankrupt or is unable to pay its debts. hence. as well. the PGMC which operates and manages the on-line lottery system for a period of eight years. but inherent in a joint venture. They exhibit and demonstrate the parties' indivisible community of interest in the conception. we fail to see any acceptable reason why it should allow a restriction on the pursuit of such business. and further compensate the LESSOR for loss of expected net profit after tax. however.A. 1169. All of the foregoing unmistakably confirm the indispensable role of the PGMC in the pursuit. 42. this imposition is unreasonable and whimsical. the PCSO binds itself "to promptly. and promulgate procedural and coordinating rules governing all activities relating to the on-line lottery system." If the contract were indeed one of lease. it is even safe to conclude that the actual lessor in this case is the PCSO and the subject matter thereof is its franchise to hold and conduct lotteries since it is. in reality." If the PGMC is engaged in the business of leasing equipment and technology for an on-line lottery system. (c) The PGMC cannot "directly or indirectly undertake any activity or business in competition with or adverse to the On-Line Lottery System of PCSO unless it obtains the latter's prior written consent. and could only be tied up to the fact that the PGMC will actually operate and manage the system.00 pursuant to the requirements of the RFP. (d) The PGMC shall provide the PCSO the audited Annual Report sent to its stockholders. because of its confessed unwillingness to bear expenses and risks. and the PCSO the least. or its suspension of operation of the on-line lottery system in breach of the contract and through no fault of the PGMC. and is. above all. in the losses — with the PGMC bearing the greatest burden because of its assumption of expenses and risks.P. (e) The PGMC shall put up an Escrow Deposit of P300. monitor and audit the daily performance of the system. (b) In the event of pre-termination of the contract by the PCSO.

JJ. C. it is provided inter alia that PGMC shall furnish all capital equipment and other facilities needed for the operation. J. to be sure. The Temporary Restraining Order issued on 11 April 1994 is hereby MADE PERMANENT. that the document was intentionally so crafted to make it appear that the operation is not a joint undertaking of PCSO and PGMC but a mere lease of services. concurring: I am happy to join Mr. I will add the following personal observations only for emphasis as it is not necessary to supplement his thorough exposition. 42. Lawyers have a special talent to disguise the real intention of the parties in a contract to make it come ostensibly within the provisions of a law although the real if furtive purpose is to violate it. from the adroit way the contract has been drafted. That talent has been exercised in this case. No pronouncement as to costs. It should be quite clear. The respondents take great pains to cite specific provisions of the contract to show that it is PCSO that is actually operating the online lottery. establish a radio communications network throughout the country as part of the operation. Davide. but we are. with PCSO acting as "the sole and individual operator" of the lottery. Separate Opinions CRUZ. undertake a positive advertising and promotion campaign for public support of the lottery. Citing the self-serving provisions of the contract. in his excellent ponencia. association. 1169 as amended by B. not deluded.being contrary to law. Narvasa." which is prohibited by Section 1 of Rep. that the primary objective was to avoid the conclusion that PCSO will be operating a lottery "in association. collaboration or joint venture with any person.. Regalado. Act No. Thus. It is a clever instrument. Jr.. and assume all risks if the revenues from ticket sales are insufficient to pay the entire prize 231 . I am glad we are not succumbing to this sophistry. bear all expenses relating to the operation.. gratifyingly.J. but they have not succeeded in disproving the obvious. including those for the salaries and wages of the administrative and technical personnel. Romero and Bellosillo. WHEREFORE. to wit. the respondents would have us believe that the contract is perfectly lawful because all it does is provide for the lease to PCSO of the technical know-how and equipment of PGMC. This conclusion renders unnecessary further discussion on the other issues raised by the petitioners. took no part. company or entity. but not convincingly enough. SO ORDERED. Blg.P. the instant petition is hereby GRANTED and the challenged Contract of Lease executed on 17 December 1993 by respondent Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) and respondent Philippine Gaming Management Corporation (PGMC) is hereby DECLARED contrary to law and invalid. concur. Despite the artfulness of the contract (authorship of which was pointedly denied by both counsel for the government and the private respondent during the oral argument on this case). Justice Hilario G. a careful study will reveal telling stipulations that it is PGMC and not PCSO that will actually be operating the lottery.

will not be serving as a mere "hired help" of PCSO subject to its control. PGMC is an indispensable co-worker because it has the equipment and the technology and the management skills that PCSO does not have at this time for the operation of the lottery. it cannot. Locus standi is not such an absolute rule that it cannot admit of exceptions under certain conditions or circumstances like those attending this transaction. De Villa. to show that it is only after eight years from the effectivity of the contract that PCSO will actually operate the lottery." What is especially galling is that the transaction in question would foist upon our people an essentially immoral activity through the instrumentality of a foreign corporation. Upon effectivity of this Contract. the undeniable fact is that PCSO would still be collaborating or cooperating with PGMC in the operation of the lottery. Although the contract pretends otherwise. if not in a strictly legal sense. PGMC's share in the operation depends on its own performance and the effectiveness of its collaboration with PCSO. the authority granted to PGMC by the agreement will readily show that PCSO will not be acting alone. PCSO will be able to effectively take-over the Facilities and efficiently operate the On-Line Lottery System. how will it be operating the lottery? Undoubtedly. 232 . it will be doing so "in collaboration. Every one has the right and responsibility to prevent the fire from spreading even if he lives in the other block. "It is not only the owner of the burning house who has the right to call the firemen. Concerning the doctrine of locus standi. Only "at the end of the term of this Contract" will PCSO "be able to effectively take-over the Facilities and efficiently operate the OnLine Lottery System. 6. which naturally does not have the same concern for our interests as we ourselves have. And when PCSO does avail itself of such assistance. such that at the end of the term of this Contract. PGMC is plainly a partner of PCSO in violation of law.money. Most significantly. As may be expected.7. "equal to four point nine percent (4." Even on the assumption that it is PCSO that will be operating the lottery at the very start. considering that PGMC does not collect the usual fixed rentals due an ordinary lessor but is entitled to a special "Rental Fee.9%) of gross receipts from ticket sales." as the contract calls it. and with the active collaboration and encouragement of our own government at that. not a single solitary citizen can question the agreement. Par. PGMC will be functioning independently in the discharge of its own assigned role as stipulated in detail under the contract. What is even worse is that PCSO and PGMC may be actually engaged in a joint venture. as the respondents pretend. I am distressed that foreigners should be allowed to exploit the weakness of some of us for instant gain without work. commence the training of PCSO and other local personnel and the transfer of technology and expertise. 181 SCRA 623." The flexibility of this amount is significant. it will induce in PGMC an active interest and participation in the success of PCSO that is not expected of an ordinary detached lessor who gets to be paid his rentals — not a rental fee — whether the lessee's business prospers or not. which. that is to say during the entire 8-year term of the contract. Even if it be conceded that the assistance partakes of a lease of services. (Emphasis supplied). which was its reason for entering into the contract in the first place. a joint venture. I cannot agree that out of the sixty million Filipinos affected by the proposed lottery. As I remarked in my dissent in Guazon v. association or joint venture" with PGMC. it will be PGMC that will be operating the lottery. In the meantime. no matter how PGMC's assistance is called or the contract is denominated.7 of the agreement provides that PGMC shall: 6. In fact. let it be added. PCSO cannot deny that it needs the assistance of PGMC for this purpose. PGMC is a co-investor with PCSO in what is practically.

in turn. Otherwise. however. reflects the basic notion of judicial power as the power to resolve actual disputes and of the traditional business of courts as the hearing and deciding of specific controversies brought before them. 2 I have neither the competence nor the opportunity to try to craft such principle or formula. and when the court may or should relax that apparently stringent requirement and proceed to deal with the legal or constitutional issues at stake in a particular case. J. the exercise of judicial power and carrying out of judicial functions commonly take place within the context of actual cases or controversies. It is with some hesitation that I do so. upon the other hand. I reach a different conclusion in respect of the presence or absence of locus standi on the part of the petitioners in the case before the Court. JJ. I propose to address only the question of locus standi. For another. Puno and Vitug. with respect. or in what types of cases. be useful to attempt to indicate the 233 . little substantive dispute that the possession of locus standi 1 is not. issues which cannot be approached in the same way that a court approaches a suit for the collection of a sum of money or a complaint for the recovery of possession of a particular piece of land. Puno and Vitug say about locus standi in their separate opinions and there is no need to go over the ground that I share with them. There is. I submit. the issues of legality and constitutionality of the Contract of Lease entered into between the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) and the Philippine Gaming Management Corporation (PGMC). concurring I agree with the conclusions reached by my distinguished brother in the Court Davide. the principle of separation of powers which. Jr. This is not. however." and to say that the specific requirements of such public interest can only be ascertained on a "case to case" basis. or in what types of cases. no satisfactory principle or theory has been discovered and none has been crafted. waiting to be discovered. that it is not enough for the Court simply to invoke "public interest" or even "paramount considerations of national interest. This. such an approach is not intellectually satisfying. judicial power has always included the power of judicial review. The broad question is when. however. that is. that permits a ready answer to the question of when.Feliciano. Thus. the court should insist on a clear showing of locus standi understood as a direct and personal interest in the subject matter of the case at bar. considering the extensive separate opinions on this question written by my learned brothers Melo. a rigid and absolute requirement for access to the courts. In this separate opinion.. In our own jurisdiction. the petition becomes vulnerable to prompt dismissal by the court. and at least since the turn of the present century. to say that there is somewhere an overarching juridical principle or theory. I agree with the great deal of what my brothers Melo. among other things. Certainly that is the case where great issues of public law are at stake.. Because. mandates that each of the great Departments of government is responsible for performance of its constitutionally allotted tasks. the general proposition has been that a petitioner who assails the legal or constitutional quality of an executive or legislative act must be able to show that he has locus standi. in each and every case. there is an internal need (a need internal to myself) to articulate the considerations which led me to that conclusion. For one thing. There is no dispute that the doctrine of locus standi reflects an important constitutional principle. understood as the authority of courts (more specifically the Supreme Court) to assay contested legislative and executive acts in terms of their constitutionality or legality. such an answer appears to come too close to saying that locus standi exists whenever at least a majority of the Members of this Court participating in a case feel that an appropriate case for judicial intervention has arisen. both in respect of the question of locus standi and in respect of the merits of this case. Insofar as the Judicial Department is concerned. whether in our jurisdiction or in the United States. that is. the need to show locus standi may be relaxed in greater or lesser degree. It might.. To my knowledge. J.

strictly so called. the pocket books of individual taxpayers and importers. go only to the uses directed and permitted by law is as real and personal and substantial as the interest of a private taxpayer in seeing to it that tax monies are not intercepted on their way to the public treasury or otherwise diverted from uses prescribed or allowed by law. not just taxes and customs duties. The funds here involved are public in another very real sense: they will belong to the PCSO. Puno and Vitug. constitute only one (1) of the major categories of funds today raised and used for public purposes. no losing or dissatisfied bidder has come before the Court. that because the funds here involved will not have been generated by the exercise of the taxing power of the Government. a government owned or controlled corporation and an instrumentality of the government and are destined for utilization in social development projects which. the funds involved are clearly public in nature. through the Office of the Solicitor General. concede that taxpayers' suits have been recognized as an exception to the traditional requirement of recognized as an exception to the traditional requirement of locus standi. . Firstly. A third consideration of importance in the present case is the lack of any other party with a more direct and specific interest in raising the questions here being raised. the lesser will be the pressure upon the traditional sources of public revenues. The interest of a private citizen in seeing to it that public funds. in other words. Where the Court perceives a serious issue of violation of some constitutional or statutory limitation. as well as the proceeds of privatization of government owned or controlled corporations and other government owned assets. They insist. The concept of locus standi — which is part and parcel of the broader notion of ripeness of the case — "does not operate independently and is not alone decisive. must be dismissed by the Court. at least in principle.e." 3 The notion of locus standi and the judge's conclusions about the merits of the case. the present petition cannot be regarded as a taxpayer's suit and therefore. The funds to be generated by the proposed lottery are to be raised from the population at large. however. It is also pertinent to note that the more successful the government is in raising revenues by non-traditional methods such as PAGCOR operations and privatization measures. those funds will come from well-nigh every town and barrio of Luzon.considerations of principle which. In the case presently before the Court. My learned brothers Melo. in the present case. are designed to benefit the general public. A second factor of high relevance is the presence of a clear case of disregard of a constitutional or statutory prohibition by the public respondent agency or instrumentality of the government. In the present case. is defending the PCSO Contract (though it had not participated in the drafting 234 . interact with each other. . The National Government itself. It is my respectful submission that that constitutes much too narrow a conception of the taxpayer's suit and of the public policy that it embodies. the character of the funds or other assets involved in the case is of major importance. i. . from whatever source they may have been derived. the majority of the Court considers that a very substantial showing has been made that the Contract of Lease between the PCSO and the PGMC flies in the face of legal limitations. it will be much less difficult for the Court to find locus standi in the petitioner and to confront the legal or constitutional issue. [I]t is in substantial part a function of a judge's estimate of the merits of the constitutional [or legal] issue. A showing that a constitutional or legal provision is patently being disregarded by the agency or instrumentality whose act is being assailed. raised questions about the legality or constitutionality of the Contract of Lease here involved.. Though a public bidding was held. appear to me to require an affirmative answer to the question of whether or not petitioners are properly regarded as imbued with the standing necessary to bring and maintain the present petition. Should the proposed operation be as successful as its proponents project. It is widely known that the principal sources of funding for government operations today include. The Office of the Ombudsman has not. but also revenues derived from activities of the Philippine Amusement Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR). JJ. can scarcely be disregarded by court. to the knowledge of the Court. It is also to overlook the fact that tax monies.

the amounts of money expected to be raised by the proposed activities of the PCSO and PGMC will be very substantial. This case does not involve such a factual situation. destroys self-confidence and eviscerates one's self-respect. In a situation like that here obtaining. The courts. Gambling has wrecked and will continue to wreck families and homes. which in the long run will corrode whatever is left of the Filipino moral character. Justice Paras. This means that I agree with the decision insofar as it holds that the prohibition. PADILLA. 197 SCRA 52) I expressed these views in a separate opinion where I was joined by that outstanding lady jurist. except only when such policies pose a clear and present danger to the life. and assume full responsibility to the people for such policy. as the decision states. Justice A.thereof). a taxpayer's derivative suit should be recognized as available. constitutes still another consideration of significance. I hasten to make of record that I do not subscribe to gambling in any form. It is not easy to conceive of a contract with greater and more far-reaching consequences. In Basco v. literally speaking. the agreement if implemented will be practically nationwide in its scope and reach (the PCSOPGMC Contract is limited in its application to the Island of Luzon. MelencioHerrera whose incisive approach to legal problems is today missed in this Court. It demeans the human personality. 91649. so well known in corporation law and practice. it is an antithesis to individual reliance and reliability as 235 . and regulation of the entire activity known as gambling properly pertain to "state policy. morality or expediency of policies adopted by the political departments of government in areas which fall within their authority. is fatally defective. (G. cannot inquire into the wisdom. the above considerations have appeared to me to be important and as pressing for acceptance and exercise of jurisdiction on the part of this Court. control. the legislative and the executive that should decide on what government should do in the entire area of gambling. then the Contract before us may be said to be national indeed in its implications and consequences). the subject matter of the petition is not something that the Court may casually pass over as unimportant and as not warranting the expenditure of significant judicial resources. the political departments of government. However. No. Thus. In the examination of the various features of this case. Necessarily. therefore.. for the country than the Contract of Lease here involved. I reproduce here those views because they are highly persuasive to the conclusions I reach in the present controversy: I concur in the result of the learned decision penned by my brother Mr. namely. J.R. The wide range of impact of the Contract of Lease here assailed and of its implementation. probably in the hundreds of millions of pesos. but if the PCSO Contracts with the other two [2] private "gaming management" corporations in respect of the Visayas and Mindanao are substantially similar to PCSO's Contract with PGMC. concurring: My views against gambling are a matter of judicial record. and given the present state of the law. In the case at bar. PAGCOR. the submission may be made that the institution. 14 May 1991. Mme. liberty or property of the individual. of the corporate stockholders' derivative suit furnishes an appropriate analogy and that on the basis of such an analogy." It is. It is with these considerations in mind that I vote to grant due course to the Petition and to hold that the Contract of Lease between the PCSO and PGMC in its present form and content.

a private corporation with substantial (if not controlling) foreign composition and content. Gambling is reprehensible whether maintained by government or privatized. the moral standing of the government in its repeated avowals against "illegal gambling" is fatally flawed and becomes untenable when it itself engages in the very activity it seeks to eradicate. in 236 . the Court observes that petitioner does not allege that he is running for re-election. we already have the PAGCOR's gambling casinos. No. it is not export oriented. unsigned en banc resolution in Valmonte v.R. I believe. answers itself. I submit that the sooner the legislative department outlaws all forms of gambling. the petitioner must show that he has a clear personal or legal right that would be violated with the enforcement of the challenged statute. Also. order or regulation or the implementation of the questioned governmental action. 1. 22 September 1987). But. much less. which is legal only because it is authorized by law and run by the government. that he is prejudiced by the election. and the sooner the executive implements such policy. the Filipino people will soon. be initiated into an even more sophisticated and encompassing nationwide gambling network known as the "on-line hi-tech lotto system. One can go through the Court's decision today and mentally replace the activity referred to therein asgambling. a government-owned corporation and the PGMC. the better it will be for the nation. in the long run. PCSO. that in order to maintain a suit challenging the constitutionality and/or legality of a statute. 79084. 78716 and G. I would be the last to downgrade the rule. No. Before addressing the crux of the controversy. in return for the substantial revenues it would yield the government to carry out its laudable projects. G. in my considered view. therein reiterated. The revenues realized by the government out of "legalized" gambling will. this rule maybe (and should be) relaxed when the issue involved or raised in the petition is of such paramount national interest and importance as to dwarf the above procedural rule into a barren technicality. It will draw from existing wealth in the hands of Filipinos and transfer it into the coffers of the PCSO and its foreign partners at a price of further debasement of the moral standards of the Filipino people. franchised. As a unanimous Court en banc aptly put it in De Guia vs. as a fundamental state policy. if plans do not miscarry. It is said that petitioners 1 have no locus standi to bring this suit even as they challenge the legality and constitutionality of a contract of lease between the PCSO. be more than offset and negated by the irreparable damage to the people's moral values. No.well as personal industry which are the touchstones of real economic progress and national development. it is not wealth producing. COMELEC. such as infrastructure and social amelioration? The question. As the ponente of the extended. (G. with the activity known as prostitution. 6 May 1992. the bulk of whom are barely subsisting below the poverty line. 104712." To be sure. Such contract of lease contains the terms and conditions under which an "on-line hi-tech lotto system" will operate in the country. and "regulated" by the government. by district.R. 208 SCRA 420. We presently have the sweepstakes lotteries.R. order or regulation or assailing a particular governmental action as done with grave abuse of discretion or with lack of jurisdiction. Would prostitution be any less reprehensible were it to be authorized by law.

1976. For. Justice Edgardo L. 1169 as amended by BP No. that PCSO should not and cannot be made a vehicle for an otherwise prohibited foreign 237 . including the expansion of existing ones. and shall have the authority: A. to engage in health and welfare-related investments. As such. concerning as it does the political exercise of qualified voters affected by the apportionment. No. except for the activities mentioned in the preceding paragraph (A). We so held similarly through Mr. Commission on Elections. L-4640. 27 SCRA 533) He does not also allege any legal right that has been violated by respondent. G. 2. in such frequency and manner. as shall be determined. considering the importance of the issue involved. B. company or entity. We resolved to brush aside the question of procedural infirmity. and/or charitable grants: Provided. If for this alone. petitioner does not appear to have any cause of action. No. as amended. L28113. while the PCSO charter allows the PCSO to itself engage in lotteries. March 28. Municipality of Malabang vs. It is at once clear from the foregoing legal provisions that. a standing in law. I view the present case as falling within the De Guia case doctrine. COMELEC. However. association or joint venture" with others. The Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office. and as such shall have the general powers conferred in section thirteen of Act Numbered One Thousand Four Hundred FiftyNine. association or joint venture with any person. then the issue is of paramount national interest and importance as to justify and warrant a relaxation of the above-mentioned procedural rule on locus standi. and subject to such rules and regulations as shall be promulgated by the Board of Directors. G. shall be the principal government agency for raising and providing for funds for health programs.R. when the contract of lease in question seeks to establish and operate a nationwide gambling network with substantial if not controlling foreign participation. medical assistance and services. hereinafter designated the Office. The palpable reason for this prohibition is. October 12. The charter of the PCSO — Republic Act No. Benito. even as We perceive the petition to be one of declaratory relief. association. for the purpose of providing for permanent and continuing sources of funds for health programs. lotteries and other similar activities. medical assistance and services and charities of national character. whether domestic or foreign. Paras in Osmeña vs. reads: Sec. 1969. To hold and conduct charity sweepstakes races. it does not however permit the PCSO to undertake or engage in lotteries in "collaboration. 42 — insofar as relevant. Subject to the approval of the Minister of Human Settlements. and petitioner alleging abuse of discretion and violation of the Constitution by respondent.R.Parañaque. 73 SCRA 333. — The Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office. he does not appear to have locus standi. programs. a personal or substantial interest. by itself or in collaboration. projects and activities which may be profit-oriented. 1. (Sanidad vs. That such investments will not compete with the private sector in areas where investments are adequate as may be determined by the National Economic and Development Authority.

As announced in Lamb vs. PGMC will get its 4. 490." Necessarily. is the power to hear and decide causes pending between parties who have the right to sue and be sued in the courts of law and equity.S. PCSO contributes (aside from its charter) the market. vote to give DUE COURSE to the petition and to declare the contract of lease in question between PCSO and PGMC. For one cannot do without the other in the installation. But assuming ex gratia argumenti that such arrangement between PCSO and PGMC is not a joint venture between the two of them to install and operate an "on-line hi-tech lotto system" in the country. perhaps simplified. 422 U. it can hardly be denied that it is. [1912]. marketing of the entire enterprise or project in this country. Justice Davide to which I fully subscribe. United States. the contract of lease in question is a clear violation of Republic Act No. I. this implies that a party must show a personal stake in the outcome of the controversy or an injury to himself that can be addressed by a favorable decision so as to warrant his invocation of the court's jurisdiction and to justify the court's remedial powers in his behalf (Warth vs. i. That has been taken care of in the opinion of Mr. 559). On a slightly different plane and. therefore. Having arrived at the conclusion that the contract of lease in question between the PCSO and PGMC is illegal and. equipment and know-how (expertise). invalid. I consider the agreement or arrangement between the PCSO and PGMC a joint venture because each party to the contract contributes its share in the enterprise or project. we have yet to see any of petitioners acquiring a personal stake in the outcome of the controversy or being placed in a situation whereby injury may be sustained if the contract of lease in question is implemented. operation and.S. The core question then is whether the lease contract between PCSO and PGMC is a device whereby PCSO will engage in lottery in collaboration. McMicken vs. Here.. directly or through dealers — and this to me is most important — in the totality or mass of the Filipinogambling elements who will invest in lotto tickets. Seldin. 42 (the PCSO charter). MELO. as concerned citizens and as taxpayers and as members of Congress. PGMC contributes its facilities. 1169 as amended by BP No. do not possess the necessary legal standing to assail the validity of the contract of lease entered into by the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office and the Philippine Gaming Management Corporation relative to the establishment and operation of an "Online Hi-Tech Lottery System" in the country. 204). the residue of the whole exercise will go to PCSO. most importantly. 180 U. Guzman vs. an association or collaboration between PCSO and PGMC. PGMC. Marrero. association or joint venture with another. It may be that the contract has somehow evoked public interest which petitioners claim to represent. To any person with a minimum of business know-how. "[J]udicial power in its nature.9% of gross receipts (with assumption of certain risks in the course of lotto operations). I find it unnecessary to dwell on the other issues raised in the pleadings and arguments of the parties. 81. J.e. I need not go here into the details and different specific features of the contract to show that it is a joint venture between PCSO and PGMC. Indeed. Phipps (22 Phil. at the very least. But the alleged public interest which they pretend to represent is not only broad and encompassing but also strikingly and veritably indeterminate that one cannot truly say whether a handful of the 238 . therefore. 97 U. of no force and effect. for the reasons aforestated.S. dissenting: I submit that the petition before the Court deserves no less than outright dismissal for the reason that petitioners.or domestic entity to engage in lotteries (gambling activities) in the Philippines. this is a joint venture between PCSO and PGMC. plain and simple.

In fact. 13 SCRA [1965] 377). Gonzales vs. Any effort to infuse personality on petitioners by considering the present case as a "taxpayer's suit" could not cure the lack of locus standi on the part of petitioners. Secretary of Public Works. And if ever some semblance of "public character" may be said to attach to its earnings. Macaraig. vs. the day may come when the activities of government corporate entities will ground to a standstill on account of nuisance suits filed against them by persons whose supposed interest in the contract is as remote and as obscure as the interest of any man in the street. claiming to have interest in the contract. does not involve the disbursement of public funds but of strictly corporate money. regardless of its garb. a "taxpayer's suit" refers to a case where the act complained of directly involves the illegal disbursement of public funds derived from taxation (Pascual vs. Philippine Constitution Association. it now appears that no question of constitutional dimension is at stake as indeed the majority barely touches on such an issue. Auditor General. The case before us is not a challenge to the validity of a statute or an attempt to restrain expenditure of public funds pursuant to an alleged invalid congressional enactment. however. 15 SCRA [1965] 569. 41 SCRA [1971] 702. Pelaez vs. Tolentino vs. 65 SCRA [1975] 624). Marcos. the Court decided to hear the case on oral argument on the initial perception that a constitutional issue could be involved. that in those occasions where this Court allowed such a suit. vote to dismiss the petition. It cannot be overstressed that no public fund raised by taxation is involved in this case. Feliciano. 239 . Rather. That contract. vs. It must be conceded though that a "taxpayer's suit" had been allowed in a number of instances in this jurisdiction. I. after the trial was blazed by Pascual vs. could come to this Court and seek nullification of said contract. COMELEC. When the petition at bench was filed. 110 Phil. The PCSO is not a revenue. One final observation must be emphasized. 18 SCRA [1966] 300. dissenting: At the outset. it is even doubtful if the rentals which the PCSO will pay to the lessor for its operation of the lottery system may be regarded as "public fund".public. COMELEC. therefore. 197 SCRA [1991]. several more followed. What petitioners ask us to do is to nullify a simple contract of lease entered into by a government-owned corporation with a private entity. Income or money realized by it from its operations will not and need not be turned over to the National Treasury. may lay a valid claim of representation in behalf of the millions of citizens spread all over the land who may have just as many varied reactions relative to the contract in question.collecting arm of the government. 120 SCRA [1983] 337. Philippine Constitution Association. However. As understood in this jurisdiction. COMELEC. Secretary of Public Works. Inc. this will constitute corporate funds which will remain with the corporation to finance its various activities as authorized in its charter. Dumlao vs.. Inc. let me state that my religious faith and family upbringing compel me to regard gambling. like herein petitioners. Mathay. The dangers attendant thereto are not hard to discern and this Court must not allow them to come to pass. supra. the case invariably involved either the constitutionality of a statute or the legality of the disbursement of public funds through the enforcement of what was perceived to be an invalid or unconstitutional statute or legislation (Pascual. It is to be noted. it is simply because PCSO is a governmentowned or controlled entity and not a purely private enterprise. PUNO. Iloilo Palay and Corn Planters Association vs. supra. Jimenez. [1960] 331. as earlier pointed out. 95 SCRA [1980] 392. Maceda vs. no matter how remote. concentrating as it does on its interpretation of the contract between the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office and the Philippine Gaming Management Corporation. 15 SCRA [1965] 479. J. For sure. Lozada vs. If every taxpayer.

(b) Act No. Rigos. 7042." 1 Petitioners Jovito R. and as taxpayers and concerned citizens. The petition describes petitioner Kilosbayan. Jose Abcede. justice. Doromal joined the petition in their capacity as trustees of Kilosbayan. a taxpayer and a concerned citizen.. I will not. Fernando. 3 Petitioner Joker P. Cirilo A." The requirement of standing to sue inheres from the definition of judicial power. or standing to sue. 3836 which requires a congressional franchise before any person or entity can establish and operate a telecommunication system. and lay leaders who are committed to the cause of truth. company or entity". however. of petitioners. (Italics supplied) The phrase "actual controversies involving rights which are legally demandable and enforceable" has acquired a cultivated meaning given by courts. 4 With due respect to the majority opinion. (c) section 11. and (d) R. yield to that temptation for we are not judges of the Old Testament type who were not only arbiters of law but were also high priests of morality. Emilio C. I wish to focus on the interstices of locus standi. pastors. Arroyo joined the petition as a member of the House of Representative. Ernie Camba. 1169. as a non-stock corporation composed of "civic spirited citizens. No.. Blg. Christine Tan. and (2) assuming their locus standi.A. It is not merely a technical rule of procedure which we are at liberty to disregard. nuns. Paul Freund as "among the most amorphous in the entire domain of public law. Article VIII of the Constitution provides: xxx xxx xxx Judicial power includes the duty of the courts of justice to settle actual controversies involving rights which are legally demandable and enforceable. Raoul V. as amended by B.with hostile eyes.P. priests. No. Art. whether or not the Contract of Lease between PCSO and PGMC is null and void considering: (a) section 1 of R." While the legal issues abound. 42 (Charter of PCSO) which prohibits PCSO from holding and conducting lotteries "in collaboration. a fight between the forces of light against the forces of darkness. I will therefore strictly confine the peregrinations of my mind to the legal issues for resolution: (1) whether or not the petitioners have the Locus standi to file the petition at bench. Rafael G.. Victorino. Inc. which requires that for a corporation to operate a public utility. Such antagonism tempts me to view the case at bench as a struggle between good and evil. and to determine whether or not there has been a grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction on the part of any branch or instrumentality of the Government. Inc. 2 Petitioners Freddie Webb and Wigberto Tañada joined the petition as senators. otherwise known as the "Foreign Investments Act". XII of the Constitution. Gozon. a concept described by Prof. and national renewal. It spells out the requirements that must be 240 .A. Salonga. which includes all forms of gambling in its "negative list. Jr. Capulong. taxpayers and concerned citizens. association or joint venture with any person. and Quintin S. Section 1. at least 60% of its capital must be owned by Filipino citizens. association. Jose Cunanan. Felipe L. I deferentially submit that the threshold issue is the locus standi.

it was held that the Government of the Philippines was a proper party to challenge the constitutionality of the Probation Act because. holding that Levitt was not a proper party since he was not claiming the position held by Justice Black. Cruz. The rule before was that an ordinary taxpayer did not have the proper party personality to question the legality of an appropriation law since his interest in the sum appropriated was not substantial enough. holding that the patients of the physician and not the physician himself were the proper parties. an American taxpayer and member of the bar. 241 . a challenge by an ordinary taxpayer to the validity of a law granting back pay to government officials. Ullmann. . Our distinguished colleague. the complainant cannot have the legal personality to raise the constitutional question. had been appointed to the U. a physician questioned the constitutionality of a law prohibiting the use of contraceptives. filed a motion for leave to question the qualifications of Justice Black who. the petitioner. including members of Congress. had been appointed to the board of medical examiners in violation of the provisions of the Medical Act of 1959. he averred. upon the ground that it might prove dangerous to the life or health of some of his patients whose physical condition would not enable them to bear the rigors of childbirth. (1) there must be an actual case or controversy. In People v. Until and unless such actual or potential injury is established.S. Justice Isagani A. In Ex Parte Levitt. In Cuyegkeng v. Justice Cruz has observed the continuing relaxation of the rule on standing. The Supreme Court dismissed the petition. he claimed. The Court dismissed the petition. and (4) the decision of the constitutional question must be necessary to the determination of the case itself. Senate President. more than any other. 5 The complexion of the rule on locus standi has been undergoing a change. (2) the question of constitutionality must be raised by the proper party. Supreme Court in violation of the Constitution of the United States. 6 thus: xxx xxx xxx A proper party is one who has sustained or is in immediate danger of sustaining an injury as a result of the act complained of. holding that Cuyegkeng had not made a claim to the position held by Cruz and therefore could not be regarded as a proper party who had sustained an injury as a result of the questioned act. (3) the constitutional question must be raised at the earliest possible opportunity. The court dismissed the challenge. in Custodio v. Vera. In Tileson v. during the period corresponding to the Japanese Occupation was dismissed as having been commenced by one who was not a proper party. the petitioner challenged in a quo warranto proceeding the title of the respondent who. Mr. Thus. . it was the government itself that should be concerned over the validity of its own laws. Mr. Cruz.satisfied before one can come to court to litigate a constitutional issue. gives a shorthand summary of these requirements when he states that no constitutional question will be heard and decided by courts unless there is a showing of the following: .

InPHILCONSA v. For the present case." In Tolentino v. The breadth of Presidential Decree No. At the instance of taxpayers. 1031. "The transcendental importance to the public of these cases demands that they be settled promptly and definitely. this Court enjoys that open discretion to entertain the same or not. 991 carries an appropriation of Five Million Pesos for the effective implementation of its purposes. The interest of the aforenamed petitioners as taxpayers in the lawful expenditure of these amounts of public money sufficiently clothes them with that personality to litigate the validity of the Decrees appropriating said funds. to raise the question of the validity of an appropriation law. brushing aside. Sanidad and Pablito V. as regard taxpayer's suits. 1031 appropriates the sum of Eight Million Pesos to carry out its provisions. the Supreme Court upheld the petitioners as proper parties. Presidential Decree No. an organization of taxpayers and citizens was held to be a proper party to question the constitutionality of a law providing for special retirement benefits for members of the legislature. if we must." 242 . In Lozada v. It is now an ancient rule that the valid source of a statute — Presidential Decrees are of such nature — may be contested by one who will sustain a direct injury as a result of its enforcement. upon the theory that the expenditure of public funds by an officer of the State for the purpose of executing an unconstitutional act constitutes a misapplication of such funds. Moreover. the rule has been changed and it is now permissible for an ordinary taxpayer. Commission on Elections. or a group of taxpayers. As the Supreme Court then put it. Sanidad) possess locus standi to challenge the constitutional premise of Presidential Decree Nos. Jimenez. 991. the petitioners were held without legal standing to demand the filling of vacancies in the legislature because they had only "a generalized interest' shared with the rest of the citizenry. technicalities of procedure. Commission on Elections. In Sanidad v.Since the first Emergency Powers Cases. however. We deem it sound to exercise that discretion affirmatively so that the authority upon which the disputed Decrees are predicated may be inquired into. We rule that the petitioners in L-44640 (Pablo C. laws providing for the disbursement of public funds may be enjoined. however. it was held that a senator had the proper party personality to seek the prohibition of a plebiscite for the ratification of a proposed constitutional amendment. thus — As a preliminary resolution. and 1033. Commission on Elections.

courts are neither free to decide all kinds of cases dumped into their laps nor are they free to open their doors to all parties or entities claiming a grievance. I also believe that repeated and essentially head-on confrontations between the life-tenured branch and the representative branches of government will not." Unrestrained standing in federal taxpayer or citizen suits would create a remarkably illogical system of judicial supervision of the coordinate branches of the Federal Government. at least had 243 . democratically elected organ of government. Moreover. which was repeatedly rejected by the Framers. taxpayer or citizen advocacy. It is intended "to assure a vigorous adversary presentation of the case. the argument that the Court should allow unrestricted taxpayer or citizen standing underestimates the ability of the representative branches of the Federal Government to respond to the citizen pressure that has been responsible in large measure for the current drift toward expanded standing. perhaps more importantly to warrant the judiciary's overruling the determination of a coordinate. Jr. Indeed. As Mr. We should be ever mindful of the contradictions that would arise if a democracy were to permit at large oversight of the elected branches of government by a non-representative. is precisely the type of leverage that in a democracy ought to be employed against the branches that were intended to be responsive to public attitudes about the appropriate operation of government. Justice Powell carefully explained in U. 1993. be beneficial to either. Randolph's proposed Council of Revision. we further relaxed the rule on standing in Oposa. Justice Cruz in Daza v.S. in the long run. But even perusing this provision as a constitutional warrant for the court to enter the once forbidden political thicket. The once stubborn disinclination to decide constitutional issues due to lack of locus standi is incompatible with the expansion of judicial power mandated in section 1 of Article VIII of the Constitution. the other branches of Government are ultimate guardians of the liberties and welfare of the people in quite as great a degree as the courts. v. Singson. judicial branch." As we held thru the ground breaking ponencia of Mr." 9 It thus goes to the very essence of representative democracies. and in large measure insulated. et al. "to determine whether or not there has been a grave abuse of discretion.. v. Factoran. Justice Holmes wisely observed. as Mr. It seems to me inescapable that allowing unrestricted taxpayer or citizen standing would significantly alter the allocation of power at the national level. Hon.restraint in the utilization of our power to negative the actions of the other branches. 7where we recognized the locus standi of minors representing themselves as well as generations unborn to protect their constitutional right to a balanced and healthful ecology. Fulgencio S. 8 this provision no longer precludes the Court from resolving political questions in proper cases. i." Stated otherwise.. The public confidence essential to the former and the vitality critical to the latter may well erode if we do not exercise self. "We must as judges recall that. Richardson. I am perfectly at peace with the drift of our decisions liberalizing the rule on locus standi. amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction on the part of any branch or instrumentality of the government. with a shift away from a democratic form of government. and. it is clear that the requirement of locus standihas not been jettisoned by the Constitution for it still commands courts in no uncertain terms to settle only "actual controversies involving rights which are legally demandable and enforceable.e. 10 viz: Relaxation of standing requirements is directly related to the expansion of judicial power. given its potentially broad base. The rationale for this constitutional requirement of locus standi is by no means trifle.Last July 30.

Thus. and sections 4. The reason is obvious: none of the petitioners will be exposed to this alleged fraud for all of them profess to abjure playing the lotto. 51. and 5 BP Blg. furnish. however noble it may be. It is self-evident that lotto cannot physically or spiritually injure him who does not indulge in it. Given the sparseness of our resources. Comelec. It must be stressed that petitioners are in the main. Neither can I perceive how the other petitioners can be personally injured by the Contract of Lease between PCSO and PGMC even if petitioner Salonga assails as unmitigated fraud the statistical probability of winning the lotto as he compared it to the probability of being struck twice by lightning. 7. 740-741. They are complete strangers to the contract. namely. petitioners have no standing to impugn its validity as taxpayers. 1. every law passed by the legislature automatically would have been previewed by the judiciary before the law could take effect." Sierra Club v. Not one of the petitioners is a party to the Contract of Lease executed between PCSO and PGMC. In fact. BP Blg. the capacity of courts to render efficient judicial service to our people is severely limited. the elections to be held involve the expenditure of public moneys. they have not shown that elemental injury in fact which will endow them with a standing to sue. They stand neither to gain nor to lose economically by its enforcement. Our ruling in Dumlao v. this is an evil that clearly confronts our judiciary today. do not directly involve the disbursement of public funds. On the other hand. A lesser but not insignificant reason for screening the standing of persons who desire to litigate constitutional issues is economic in character. To be sure. 11 If no tax money is being illegally deflected in the Contract of Lease between PCSO and PGMC. 52." Such commitment to truth. Kilosbayan is not a private commission on audit.the virtue of being systematic. cannot give Kilosbayan a roving commission to check the validity of contracts entered into by the government and its agencies. viz: However. paragraph 2 of the Contract of Lease provides that it is PGMC that shall build. nowhere in their Petition do said 244 . and with great reluctance. But the case at bench does not involve any expenditure of public money on the part of PCSO. Petitioners also contend they have locus standi as taxpayers. justice and national renewal. and maintain at its own expense and risk the facilities for the On-Line Lottery System of PCSO and shall bear all maintenance and other costs. the allowance of public actions would produce uneven and sporadic review. the statutory provisions questioned in this case. 405 U. n. contrary to the Court's recognition that "judicial review is effective largely because it is not available simply at the behest of a partisan faction. Prescinding from these premises. I am not prepared to concede the standing to sue of petitioners. Morton. justice and national renewal. the quality of which would be influenced by the resources and skill of the particular plaintiff. 12 settled this issue well enough. and ultimately render themselves ineffective dispensers of justice.S. 16 (1972). and hence they are not losing bidders. And issues would be presented in abstract form. PGMC alleged it has already spent P245M in equipment and fixtures and would be investing close to P1 billion to supply adequately the technology and other requirements of PCSO. On a personal level. but is exercised only to remedy a particular. sec. seeking the nullity not of a law but of a Contract of Lease. For courts to indiscriminately open their doors to all types of suits and suitors is for them to unduly overburden their dockets. While. concededly. concrete injury. Petitioner Kilosbayan cannot justify this officious interference on the ground of its commitment to "truth. 727. since the judiciary cannot select the taxpayers or citizens who bring suit or the nature of the suits. None of the petitioners participated in the bidding. It seems to me unusual that an unaffected third party to a contract could be allowed to question its validity.

In sum." As citizens. Besides. however.. see 392 U. Again. 110 Phil. the first requirement of injury in fact cannot be abandoned for it is an essential element for the exercise of judicial power.G. speaking through our present Chief Justice. Cohen. citingPhilippine Constitution Association vs. the requirement remains. as stressed by Mr. this Court is vested with discretion as to whether or not a taxpayer's suit should be entertained. As stressed before. Justice Fortas. A citizen qua citizen suit urges a greater relaxation of the rule on locus standi. As held by this Court in Yan vs. But despite such occasional digressions. supra. the institution of a taxpayer's suit. "broadening the categories of injury that may be alleged in support of standing is a different matter from abandoning the requirement that the party seeking review must himself have suffered an injury. As the Court noted in Sierra Club. per se. Mathay.S.. viz: 13 The revolution in standing doctrine that has occurred. petitioners are pleading that they be allowed to advocate the constitutional rights of other persons who are not before the court and whose protection is allegedly their concern. 331 [1960]). E. (Philippine Constitution Association vs. in the absence of a specific statutory grant of the right of review. particularly in the 12 years since Baker v. I feel no aversion to the further relaxation of the rule on standing to accommodate what in other jurisdictions is known as an assertion of jus tertii in constitutional litigation provided the claimant can demonstrate: (1) an injury in fact to himself. Flast v. Carr. the Court has not broken with the traditional requirement that. has not meant. 392 U. Indeed. Next. Baker v. concurring) or in allowing a citizen qua citizen to invoke the power of the federal courts to negative unconstitutional acts of the Federal Government. Macapagal(43 SCRA 677 [1972]). or that there is a misapplication of such funds by respondent COMELEC (see Pascual vs. Secretary of Public Works. is no assurance of judicial review. Neither do petitioners seek to restrain respondent from wasting public funds through the enforcement of an invalid or unconstitutional law. 18 SCRA 300 [1966]). supra.S. . at 738 . we should refuse to go the last mile towards abolition of standing requirements that is implicit in broadening the "precarious opening" for federal taxpayers created by Flast. . or that public money is being deflected to any improper purpose." 405 U.petitioners allege that their tax money is "being extracted and spent in violation of specific constitutional protections against abuses of legislative power" (Flast v. and (2) the need to prevent the erosion of a preferred constitutional right of a third person. petitioners plead their standing as "concerned citizens. I believe we should limit the expansion of federal taxpayer and citizen standing in the absence of specific statutory authorization to an outer boundary drawn by the results in Flast and 245 . at 116 (Mr.. supra. a plaintiff must allege some particularized injury that sets him apart from the man on the street. that standing barriers have disappeared altogether. 15 SCRA 479 [1965]). Cohen. Gimenez. despite the diminution of standing requirements in the last decade. In recognition of those considerations. 83 [1960]). Carr. and I think it does so for the reasons outlined above. Justice Powell.S. I recognize that the Court's allegiance to a requirement of particularized injury has on occasion required a reading of the concept that threatens to transform it beyond recognition.

to wit: Section 1. 392 U. Carr. economic. certificate. To this end. Article XIII of the Constitution cannot be the matrix of petitioners' jus tertii claim for it expresses no more than a policy direction to the legislative in the discharge of its ordained duty — to give highest priority to the enactment of measures that protect and enhance the right of all the people to human dignity. alteration. reduce social. the State shall regulate the acquisition.Baker v. hence the latter can vindicate them. ownership. or any other form of authorization for the operation of a public utility shall be granted except to citizens of the Philippines or to corporations or associations organized under the laws of the Philippines at least sixty per centum of whose capital is owned by such citizens. Whether the act of the legislature in amending the charter of PCSO by giving it the authority to conduct lotto and whether the Contract of Lease entered into between PCSO and PGMC are incongruent to the policy direction of this constitutional provision is a highly debatable proposition and can be endlessly argued. They claim violation of two constitutional provisions. ..No franchise. Article XIII. Section 1. In the case at bench. or repeal by the Congress when the common good so requires. economic. My reasons for this view are rooted in respect for democratic processes and in the conviction that "[t]he powers of the federal judiciary will be adequate for the great burdens placed upon them only if they are employed prudently. and political inequalities and remove cultural inequities by equitably diffusing wealth and political power for the common good. and all the executive and managing officers of such corporation or association must be citizen of the Philippines. The Court should explicitly reaffirm traditional prudential barriers against such public actions. . The theory is that their dilution has a substantial fall out detriment to the rights of others. or authorizations be exclusive in character or for a longer period than fifty years. at 131 The second requirement recognizes society's right in the protection of certain preferred rights in the Constitution even when the rightholders are not before the court. nor shall such franchise. it is difficult to see how petitioners can satisfy these two requirements to maintain a jus tertiiclaim. — The Congress shall give highest priority to the enactment of measures that protect and enhance the right of all the people to human dignity.. and disposition of property and its increments. and remove cultural inequities by equitably diffusing wealth and political power for the common good. Article XII. and political inequalities. generalized grievances about the conduct of government or the allocation of power in the Federal System. and Section 11. Neither shall any such franchise or right be granted except under the condition that it shall be subject to amendment. Respondents steadfastly insist that the operation of lotto will increase the revenue base of PCSO and enable government 246 ." Id. use. at 106. certificate. The State shall encourage equity participation in public utilities by the general public.S." Flast v. The participation of foreign investors in the governing body of any public utility enterprise shall be limited to their proportionate share in its capital. with recognition of the strengths as well as the hazards that go with our kind of representative government. . reduce social. I think we should face up to the fact that all such suits are an effort "to employ a federal court as a forum in which to air . Cohen.

L- 247 . For even assuming arguendo that PGMC is a public utility. however cerebrally exciting it may be. (Italics supplied) I am not also convinced that petitioners can justify their locus standi to advocate the rights of hypothetical third parties not before the court by invoking the need to keep inviolate section 11. Inopiquez. does not pass upon questions of wisdom. there will be a violation of the principle of separation of powers. The Court.R. No. moral values and common sense. they assail the wisdom of embarking upon this project because of their fear of the "pernicious repercussions" which may be brought about by the Instant Sweepstakes Game which they have labelled as "the worst form of gambling" which thus "affects the moral values" of the people. We are not at liberty to anticipate the verdict on this contested factual issue. 15 Their status as legislators. too unsubstantial. Article XII of the Constitution which imposes a nationality requirement on operators of a public utility. direct. still.R. Rather. I cannot perceive how their constitutional rights and prerogatives as legislators can be adversely affected by the contract in question. (Sanidad vs. too indirect. This factual issue remains unsettled and is still the subject of litigation by the parties in the Securities and Exchange Commission. No. a personal or substantial interest. 73 SCRA 333. Their right to enact laws for the general conduct of our society remains unimpaired and undiminished. or expediency of legislation and executive acts. with regret. much less. 16 viz: Before addressing the crux of the controversy. by district.R. the proper forum for this debate. they have to demonstrate that the said contract has caused them to suffer a personal. G. 1976. and substantial injury in fact. As such. I do not agree that the distinguished status of some of the petitioners as lawmakers gives them the appropriate locus standi. G. But over and above this consideration. They also allege that the operation of high-tech lotto will eradicate illegal jueteng. in Parañaque. They dismiss gambling as evilper se and castigate government for attempting to correct a wrong by committing another wrong. the Court observes that petitioner does not allege that he is running for reelection. I respectfully submit that this constitutional provision does not confer on third parties any right of a preferred status comparable to the Bill of Rights whose dilution will justify petitioners to vindicate them in behalf of its rightholders. justice. In any event. Petitioners are scandalized by this submission. The legal right of hypothetical third parties they profess to advocate is to my mind too impersonal. the private respondents in G. L-44640. I am not unaware of our ruling in De Guia v. is not this court but congress. So we held inPCSO v. Benito. That is primarily and even exclusively a concern of the political departments of the government. as held in several cases. October 12. a standing in law. that he is prejudiced by the election. 79084 do not question the power of PCSO to conduct the Instant Sweepstakes game. notwithstanding. COMELEC. otherwise. No. It is not the province of the courts to supervise legislation or executive orders as to keep them within the bounds of propriety. the records do not at the moment bear out the claim of petitioners that PGMC is a foreign owned and controlled corporation. too amorphous to justify their access to this Court and the further lowering of the constitutional barrier of locus standi. he does not appear to have locus standi. Again. Comelec.to provide a wider range of social services to the people. They cannot simply advance a generic grievance in common with the people in general. to wit: 14 By bringing their suit in the lower court. Municipality of Malabang vs.

even as We perceive the petition to be one of declaratory relief. Thus. Justice Edgardo L. Cohen: 17 It is my respectful submission. For one thing. If for this alone. 227. For another. 27 SCRA 533).S. By downgrading the requirement on locus standi as a procedural rule which can be discarded in the name of public interest. 300 U. In other words. the question is whether the person whose standing is challenged is a proper party to request an adjudication of a particular issue and not whether the issue itself is justiciable. We so held similarly through Mr.S. come too close to saying that locus standi exists whenever at least a majority of the Members of this Court participating in a case feel that an appropriate case for judicial intervention has arisen. De Guia would also brush aside the rule on locus standi if a case raises an important issue. a party may have standing in a particular case. He does not also allege any legal right that has been violated by respondent.S. Article VIII of the Constitution which mandates courts of justice to settle only "actual controversies involving rights which are legally demandable and enforceable." Baker v. 75. We resolved to brush aside the question of procedural infirmity. 1969. It treated the rule on locus standi as a mere procedural rule. petitioner does not appear to have any cause of action. Carr. concerning as it does the political exercise of qualified voters affected by the apportionment. 204 (1962). important it may be." United public Workers v. but the federal court may nevertheless decline to pass on the merits of the case because. and petitioner alleging abuse of discretion and violation of the Constitution by respondent. A proper party is demanded so that federal courts will not be asked to decide "illdefined controversies over constitutional issues. considering the importance of the issue involved. we are in effect amending the Constitution by judicial fiat. 248 . The "gist of the question of standing" is whether the party seeking relief has "alleged such a personal stake in the outcome of the controversy as to assure that concrete adverseness which sharpens the presentation of issues upon which the court so largely depends for illumination of difficult constitutional questions. Paras in Osmena vs. however. however. for example. In this regard." However. Haworth. when standing is placed in issue in a case. I join the learned observation of Mr. I also submit that de Guia failed to perceive that the rule on locus standi has little to do with the issue posed in a case. it presents a political question. Mitchell. 186.369 U. March 28. such an answer appears to The fundamental aspect of standing is that it focuses on the party seeking to get his complaint before a federal court and not on the issues he wishes to have adjudicated. 240 (1937).28113. that we should reexamine de Guia. or a case which is of "a hypothetical or abstract character. v. 90 (1947). Commission on Elections. Justice Feliciano: "that it is not enough for the Court simply to invoke 'public interest' or even 'paramount considerations of national interest. It is not a plain procedural rule but a constitutional requirement derived from section 1." The phrase has been construed since time immemorial to mean that a party in a constitutional litigation must demonstrate a standing to sue."Aetna Life Insurance Co. 330 U. such an approach is not intellectually satisfying. As well pointed out in Flast v.' and to say that the specific requirements of such public interest can only be ascertained on a 'case to case' basis.

The majority granted locus standi to petitioners because of lack of any other party with more direct and specific interest. With due respect. among others. By balancing this duality. the majority has entertained a public action to annul a private contract. the majority decision appears to have set a dangerous precedent by unduly trivializing the rule onlocus standi. I reject the sublimal fear that an unyielding insistence on the rule on locus standi will weaken the judiciary vis-a-vis the other branches of government. Real power belongs to him who has power over power. section 1 of R. 42. 1169. VITUG. In contrast. it boggles the mind how the majority can invoke considerations of national interest to justify its abandonment of the rule on locus standi. however. In so doing. But one has standing because he has standing on his own and standing cannot be acquired because others with standing have refused to come to court. If there is no provision of the Constitution that is involved in the case at bench. We contribute to constitutionalism both by the use of our power to decide and its non use. but without justifying the interposition of judicial power on any felt need to prevent violation of an important constitutional provision.P. The hindsight of history ought to tell us that it is not power per se that strengthens. To be sure. Power unused is preferable than power misused. The fact. as amended by B. The contract in question was voided on the sole ground that it violated an ordinary statute. the court took an unorthodox posture. it is difficult to tread the path of the majority on this significant issue. the majority may have given sixty (60) million Filipinos the standing to assail contracts of government and its agencies. The Constitution did not install a government by the judiciary. Indeed. If I pay an unwavering reverence to the rule of locus standi. But. the idea of a taxpayer's derivative suit. and strictly on the ground of lack of locus standi on the part of petitioners. and yet it resolved the issues posed by the petition. I vote to DENY the petition. has no legal warrant. and certainly will not sit well with prospective foreign investors. among others. Blg. Our law on private corporation categorically sanctions stockholder's derivative suit. As there was no proper party before the court. to say the least. The thesis is also floated that petitioners have standing as they can be considered taxpayers with right to file derivative suit like a stockholder's derivative suit in private corporations. By its decision. its decision is vulnerable to be criticized as an advisory opinion. This is an invitation for chaos to visit our law on contract. dissenting: 249 . nay. IN VIEW WHEREOF. I look at judicial review from a distinct prism. our law on public corporation does not recognize this so-called taxpayer's derivative suit. I see it both as a power and a duty. As well said. the cases we decide are as significant as the cases we do not decide. Executive and the Legislative. By its ruling. it is also a duty because its requirement of locus standi. it is our eternal concern to prevent tyranny but that includes tyranny by ourselves. Our brethren in the majority have also taken the unprecedented step of striking down a contrast at the importunings of strangers thereto. not a government by the unelected.. we are able to breathe life to the principle of separation of powers and prevent tyranny. It is a power because it enables the judiciary to check excesses of the Executive and the Legislative. the majority has pushed the Court in unchartered water bereft of any compass. In offering this submission. The survival of our democracy rests in a large measure on our ability to maintain this delicate equipoise of powers.It is plain to see that in de Guia. For this reason. It held there was no proper party before it. keeps the judiciary from overreaching the powers of the other branches of government. while alluring. Hence. J. is that PCSO is not a private but a quasi-public corporation. But. it is also a duty because its requirement of locus standi.A. it is because I consider it as a touchstone in maintaining the proper balance of power among the three branches of our government. and it may have foisted the false hope that it is the repository of all remedies. The volume of noise created by the case cannot magically convert it to a case of paramount national importance.

as a practical matter. 447. 621. The rule requires that a party must show a personal stake in the outcome of the case or an injury to himself that can be redressed by a favorable decision so as to warrant his invocation of the court's jurisdiction and to justify the exercise of the court's remedial powers in his behalf.. 83) which held that it is only when a litigant is able to show such a personal stake in the controversy as to assure a concrete adverseness in the issues submitted that legal standing can attach. McCormick. As early as the case of Lamb vs. is understood to be a case where the act complained of directly involves the illegal disbursement of public funds derived from taxation." Taxpayer's suits are actions or proceedings initiated by one or more taxpayers in their own behalf or. Section 1. 96." already by itself a broad concept. stability and consequentiality. Tyler v. the Court affirmed the dismissal of a suit brought by a citizen who sought to have the Nineteenth Amendment declared unconstitutional. the exercise of that power can easily become too unwieldy by its sheer magnitude and scope to a point that may. in representation of others similarly situated for the purpose of declaring illegal or unauthorized certain acts of public officials which are claimed to be injurious to their common interests as such taxpayers (Cf. referring to one who is directly affected by. nevertheless.S. conjunctively. none is more striking than the denial of the right of challenge to one who lacks a personal or property right. a financial burden of some kind. 1 this Court ruled: "Judicial power. Cohen (392 U. in its nature. McGrath (351 U. Hendrick v.S. in no small degree. InMassachusetts v. admits of the so-called "taxpayer's suit. Thus. . 71 Am Jur 2d. . Hughes.Judicial power encompasses both an authority and duty to resolve "actual controversies involving rights which are legally demandable and enforceable" (Article VIII. v. Supreme Court in Flast vs. Miller. 86 A 2d 157. Maryland. in his concurring opinion in Ashwander vs. the controversy. Mellon. was adopted by the U." 2 An essential part of. 288). in equity. 258 U. Columbus & Greenville Ry. Tennessee Valley Authority (297 U. In Fairchild v. Henderson vs. and any illegal diminution thereof by public officials constitutes a breach of trust even as it may result in an increased burden on taxpayers (Haddock vs. 99-100. 250 . Phipps. 179 U. since a questioned act of government would almost so invariably entail.S. 610. and corollary to. said: . we have held before.S. The principle is predicated upon the theory that taxpayers are. The Court will not pass upon the validity of a statute upon complaint of one who fails to show that he is injured by its operation. Among the many applications of this rule. the challenge by a public official interested only in the performance of his official duty will not be entertained.S. the cestui que trust of tax funds. 179-180). shared by Justice Frankfurter in Joint AntiFascist Refugee Commission vs. and whose interest is immediate and substantial in. 283 U. the challenge of the federal Maternity Act was not entertained although made by the Commonwealth on behalf of all its citizens. is the power to hear and decide causes pending between partieswho have the right to sue in the courts of law and equity.S. 1987 Constitution). 234 U. 3 If it were otherwise. A contrary rule could easily lead to a limitless application of the term "taxpayer's suit. Board of Public Education. The Judges.S. 405. Justice Brandeis of the United States Supreme Court. Locus standi. this principle is the locus standi of a party litigant. 126.S. A "taxpayer's suit. 262 U." Justice Brandeis' view. ." enough to confer locus standi to a party. 123). adversely affect its intended essentiality.S. 4 It is not enough that the dispute concerns public funds. 17 ALR 2d 470).

if it were otherwise. on the part of any branch or instrumentality of the Government" (Article VIII. The Court's authority to look into and grant relief in such cases would necessitate locus standi on the part of party litigants. conferring omnipotence on. Neither has it been meant. No. amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction.) Before he can invoke the power of judicial review. Constitution). while any act of government." as such authority and duty of courts of justice "to settle actual controversies involving rights which are legally demandable and enforceable and to determine whether or not there has been a grave abuse of discretion. the long established rules on locus standi. 49120. for the above rule to apply. It is remarkable. This requirement. Considering the importance to the public of a suit assailing the constitutionality of a tax law. or allowing an intrusion by. to that of their own. must first be raised in a proper judicial controversy. In Bugnay Construction and Development Corporation vs. 1988. in effect. I submit. in our system of government. that "judicial tyranny" has been institutionalized by the 1987 Constitution. No. the courts in respect to purely political decisions. nevertheless. Tan. he must specifically prove that he has sufficient interest in preventing the illegal expenditure of 251 . (Citing Estate of George Litton vs. Section 1. G. 1988. the Supreme Court may brush aside technicalities of procedure and take cognizance of the suit. A provision which has been introduced by the 1987 Constitution is a definition.To be sure. to determine whether or not the other branches of the Government have kept themselves within the limits of the Constitution and the laws and that they have not abused the discretion given to them. I most respectfully submit. amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction. independent and coordinate branches. an apprehension which should. and in keeping with the Court's duty. at times even venturing beyond the usual understanding of its applicability in the name of national or public interest. for the first time in our fundamental law. Mendoza. . that the accepted connotation of locus standi has still managed to be the rule. serious doubts have even been raised on the propriety and feasibility of unqualifiedly recognizing the "taxpayer's suit" as an exception from the standard rule of requiring a party who invokes the exercise of judicial power to have a real and personal interest or a direct injury in the outcome of a controversy. by way of exception. This Court has heretofore spoken on the matter. rather be held far from truth and reality. .R. in the words of some constitutionalists. and subordinate. may be struck down and declared a nullity either because it contravenes an express provision of the Constitution or because it is perceived and found to be attended by or the result of grave abuse of discretion. June 30. in my considered view. however. 5 this Court ruled: . .R. G. specially explicated in the 1987 Constitution. June 30. 81311. is not merely procedural or technical but goes into the essence of jurisdiction and the competence of courts to take cognizance of justiciable disputes. to do away with the principle of separation of powers and its essential incidents such as by. be it executive in nature or legislative in character. the exercise of which is explicitly vested elsewhere. of the term "judicial power. In sum.) However. let alone to disregard. that issue. there indeed would be truth to the charge. I take it that the provision has not been intended to unduly mutate. Again. (Citing Kapatiran vs. it is exigent that the taxpayer-plaintiff sufficiently show that he would be benefited or injured by the judgment or entitled to the avails of the suit as a real party in interest. the so-called "taxpayer's suit" which courts accept on valid and compelling reasons. along with the Judiciary. sanctioning. Laron. the will of either the Legislative Department or the Executive Department — both coequal.

(Citing Sanidad. reliance can be placed by private economic actors on those decisions. xxx xxx xxx If each economic decision made by the political branches of government.money raised by taxation (citing 11 Am. the involvement of multi-national corporations in the operation of the on-line "hi-tech" lottery system. No.S. notwithstanding assurances by executive authorities. Judicial decisions are. 761. (Citing Ex Parte Levitt. and the like. are fully open to re-examination by the judicial branch. at this time. Commission on Elections. Justice Camilo D. "The Supreme Court in Economic Policy Making. Jur. published by the Senate Policy Studies Group." Policy Review — A Quarterly Journal of Policy Studies. that the Malacañang Special Review Committee did not verify warranties embodied in the contract. resolve the above issues. et al. 633. require the submission of evidence. vs. avoid an undue interference on matters which are not justiciable in nature and spare the Court from getting itself involved in political imbroglio. vs. 95 SCRA 392) and that he will sustain a direct injury as a result of the enforcement of the questioned statute or contract. cited in 15 SCRA 497. in addition. 2-3. Investors would always have to factor in possible costs arising from judicially-determined changes affecting their immediate business. pp. then very little. This Court is not a trier of facts. Just recently. et al. Since judicial power cannot be exercised unless an actual controversy is brought before the courts for resolution. and it cannot. et al. we quote: The powers of the political branches of our government over economic policies is rather clear: the Congress is to set in broad but definite strokes the legal framework and structures for economic development. Edgardo J. The doctrine of primary jurisdiction would not justify a disregard of 252 . Annotation.) As so well pointed out by Mr. Commission on Elections. Vol. The allegations to the effect that irregularities have been committed in the processing and evaluation of the bids to favor respondent PGMC." (Sen.." The words of Senate President Edgardo J.) A further set-back in entertaining the petition is that it unfortunately likewise strikes at factual issues. Dumlao. that the operation of telecommunication facilities is indispensable in the operation of the lottery system. "due respect and proper regard for the rule on locus standi would preclude the rendition of advisory opinions and other forms of pronouncement on abstract issues. if any. carry wisdom. 73 SCRA 333. Quiason during the Court's deliberations. the Court has noted petitioners' manifestation of its petition with the Securities and Exchange Commission "for the nullification of the General Information Sheets of PGMC" in respect particularly to the nationality holdings in the corporation. Angara. particularly by the executive. while the Executive provides the implementing details for realizing the economic ends identified by Congress and executes the same. 1. inflexible and can never substitute for sound decision-making at the level of those who are assigned to execute the laws of the land. Angara. 1.) It is not sufficient that he has merely a general interest common to all members of the public. January-March 1994. decisions cannot be properly modified unless another appropriate controversy arises. 302 U.

253 . xxx xxx xxx Sec." In addition. that since lottery is a game of chance. they maintain that lottery is gambling. Republic Act No. hereinafter designated the Board. (a) To adopt or amend such rules and regulations to implement the provisions of this Act. is a matter primarily addressed to the discretion of the legislativedepartment. Courts neither legislate nor ignore legal mandates. 7 and that this Court has consistently condemned the immorality and illegality of gambling to be a "national offense and not a minor transgression. it is authorized: c." In Valmonte vs. any special law authorizing gambling must. xxx xxx xxx (d) To promulgate rules and regulations for the operation of the Office and to do such act or acts as may be necessary for the attainment of its purposes and objectives. pure and simple. 11 cited by the petitioners themselves. — The Board of Directors of the Office shall have the following powers and functions. in an attempt to get the Court's concurrence in accepting the petition. said Commission on the matter. not of the courts . That is primarily and even exclusively a concern of the political departments of the government. explicitly gives public respondent PCSO the authority and power "to hold and conduct sweepstakes races. 1169.the jurisdiction of. (Emphasis supplied). the "lotto" system would itself be a "crime against morals" defined by Articles 195-199 6 of the Revised Penal Code. and whose compensation and term of office shall be fixed.9. PCSO. be interpreted strictly against the grantee. petitioners contend. nor would it permit us to now preempt. . To undertake any other activity that will enhance its funds generation. In People vs. Nevertheless. subject to the same limitations provided for in the preceding paragraph." 9 and. It shall have a Board of Directors. Powers and functions of the Board of Directors. Being immoral and a criminal offense under the Revised Penal Code. . by the President. as amended. by all canons of statutory constructions. and how correction should be done. Petitioners strongly assert. "that it is pernicious to the body politic and detrimental to the nation and its citizens. Citing previous decisions of this Court. moral values and common sense. . operations and funds management capabilities." 8"that it is a social scourge which must be stamped out. as held in several cases. we remarked: "What evils should be corrected as pernicious to the body politic. the Court must recognize the limitations of its own authority. It is not the province of the courts to supervise legislation or executive orders as to keep them within the bounds of propriety. 12 we also said: The Court. otherwise. Dionisio. and other similar activities. lotteries." 10 I most certainly will not renounce this Court's above concerns. justice or expediency of legislation and executive acts. there will be a violation of the principle of separation of powers. does not pass upon questions of wisdom. composed of five members who shall be appointed.

1 of the Constitution notwithstanding.P. by the Court eager to exercise its powers and prerogatives at every turn. I feel. 3 A personal stake is essential. premised on the concept of separation of powers." 2 This constitutional requirement for an actual case and controversy limits this Court's power of review to precisely those suits between adversary litigants with real interests at stake 2 thus preventing it from making all sorts of hypothetical pronouncements on abstract. It is fundamental that such standards be complied with before this Court could even begin to explore the substantive issues raised by any controversy brought before it. there are questions which I believe are still beyond the pale of judicial power. albeit not without reluctance. Their media of opposition are the above stated defects in the said contract which they assail to be fatally defective. contingent and amorphous issues.A. Moral or legal questions aside.").The constraints on judicial power are clear. 1169 as amended by B. No. a perusal of the petition reveals that the compelling reasons behind it. dissenting: I regret that I am unable to join my colleagues in the majority in spite of my own personal distaste for gambling and other gaming operations. Article VIII Sec. Moreover. The Court will therefore not pass upon the validity of an act of government or a statute passed by a legislative body without a requisite showing of injury. association or joint venture with any person association. I believe that there are unfortunately certain standards 1 that have to be followed in the exercise of this Court's awesome power of review before this Court could even begin to assay the validity of the contract between the PCSO and the PGMC. cannot be gainsaid. as taxpayers and civic spirted citizens. from giving due course to the instant petition. Accordingly. Petitioners anchor their principal objections against the contract entered into between the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) and the PGMC on the ground that the contract entered into by the PCSO with the PGMC violates the PCSO Charter (R. in essence. The potential harm to our system of government. except in appropriate cases and controversies which meet established requirements for constitutional adjudication. Such considerations aside. specifically section 1 thereof which bars the said body from holding conducting lotteries "in collaboration. and to determine whether or not there has been a grave abuse of discretion amounting to a lack or excess of jurisdiction on the part of any branch or instrumentality of the government. are prompted by the petitioners' moral objections against the whole idea of gambling operations operated by the government through the PCSO. for no issue brought before this court could possibly be so fundamental and paramount as to warrant a relaxation of the requisite rules for judicial review developed by settled jurisprudence inorder to avoid entangling this court in controversies which properly belong to the legislative or executive branches of our government. it is my considered opinion that the instant petition does not meet the requirements set by this court for a valid exercise of judicial review. which absence renders our pronouncements gratuitous and certainly 254 . KAPUNAN. I vote for the dismissal of the petition. in spite of the apparent expansion of judicial power granted by Section 1 of Article VIII of the 1987 Constitution. Our Constitution expressly defines judicial power as including "the duty to settle actual cases and controversiesinvolving rights which are legally demandable and enforceable. They come to this Court. I shall forthwith state the reasons why. The Constitution does not mandate this Court to wield the power of judicial review with excessive vigor and alacrity in every area or at every turn. J. company or entity. Blg 427. while based on apparently legal questions involving the contract between the PCSO and the PGMC. asserting a right of standing on a transcendental issue which they assert to be of paramount public interest. between the morality or amorality of lottery operations conducted on a wide scale involving millions of individuals and affecting millions of lives. is a fight between good and evil. the Court must thus beg off. The whole point of the petition.. However. I feel there are compelling reasons why the instant petition should be dismissed. This.

When such acts are assailed as illegal or unconstitutional. done within their sphere of competence. is a power to check. I fail to see how the petitioners in this case would be able to satisfy the locus standi requirement on the basis of a "taxpayer's suit". 7 This court has been accused. have been — and should always be — accorded with a presumption of regularity. if exercised by a court running riot over the other co-equal branches of government. not to supplant those acts or decisions of the elected representatives of the people. this Court should exercise a becoming modesty in acting as a revisor of an act of the executive or legislative branch. the core foundation of the petitioners' objections to the LOTTO operations was based on the validity of the contract between the PCSO and the PGMC in the light of Section 1 of R. 8 This tendency. of an officious tendency to delve into areas better left to the political branches of government. Such acts. Section 1 of the Constitution. 1169 as amended by B. since the exercise of the power of judicial review by this Court is inherently antidemocratic. Finally. certainly paramount to the survival of our democracy. However. 255 . because when we finally proceed to declare an act of the executive or legislative branch of our government unconstitutional or illegal. particularly in areas of economic policy has become lamentably too common as to dwarf the political capacity of the people expressed through their representatives in the policy making branches of government and to deaden their sense of moral responsibility. In a line of cases starting from Pascual v. that acts of the other branches of government are accorded due respect by this Court. Blg. under the constitution. as the petitioners in this case attempt to do. the instant petition was brought to this Court on the assumption that the issue at bench raises primarily constitutional issues. by considering the case as a "taxpayer suit" which would thereby clothe them with the personality they would lack under ordinary circumstances. The requirement for standing based on personal injury may of course be bypassed. The main premise behind the "taxpayer suit" is that the pecuniary interest of the taxpayer is involved whenever there is an illegal or wasteful use of public funds which grants them the right to question the appropriation or disbursement on the basis of their contribution to government funds. This brings me to one more important point: The idea that a norm of constitutional adjudication could be lightly brushed aside on the mere supposition that an issue before the Court is of paramount public concern does great harm to a democratic system which espouses a delicate balance between three separate but coequal branches of government.including the act challenged in the instant caseinvolve complex factors requiring flexibility and a wide range of discretion on the part of our economic managers which this Court should respect because our power of review.violative of the constitutional requirement for actual cases and controversies. It might have been much more appropriate for the issue to have taken its normal course in the courts below. As it has ultimately turned out. Secretary of Public Works 4 "taxpayer suits" have been understood to refer only to those cases where the act or statute assailed involves the illegal or unconstitutional disbursement of public funds derived from taxation. the burden falls upon those who assail these acts to prove that they satisfy the essential norms of constitutional adjudication.A. the act assailed by the petitioners on the whole involves the generation rather than disbursement of public funds. what we actually accomplish is the thwarting of the will of the elected representatives of the people in the executive or legislative branches government. It is equally of paramount public concern. of late. Moreover economic policy decisions in the current milieu. 5 Since it has not been alleged that an illegal appropriation or disbursement of a fund derived from taxation would be made in the instant case. The interest alleged and the potential injury asserted are far too general and hypothetical for us to rush into a judicial determination of what to me appears to be judgment better left to executive branch of our government.P. The tendency of a frequent and easy resort to the function of judicial review. This alone should inhibit this Court from proceeding with the case at bench. 427. poses a greater danger to our democratic system than the perceived danger — real or imagined — of an executive branch espousing economic or social policies of doubtful moral worth.6 Notwithstanding Article VIII. I vote to deny the petition.

Justice Hilario G. collaboration or joint venture with any person. concurring: I am happy to join Mr. the respondents would have us believe that the contract is perfectly lawful because all it does is provide for the lease to PCSO of the technical know-how and equipment of PGMC. J. association. PCSO cannot deny that 256 .7 of the agreement provides that PGMC shall: 6. it is provided inter alia that PGMC shall furnish all capital equipment and other facilities needed for the operation. It should be quite clear. 42. Thus. that the primary objective was to avoid the conclusion that PCSO will be operating a lottery "in association. In fact. the authority granted to PGMC by the agreement will readily show that PCSO will not be acting alone. Most significantly. it will be PGMC that will be operating the lottery. 1169 as amended by B. in his excellent ponencia.P. PGMC is an indispensable co-worker because it has the equipment and the technology and the management skills that PCSO does not have at this time for the operation of the lottery. not deluded. a careful study will reveal telling stipulations that it is PGMC and not PCSO that will actually be operating the lottery. Despite the artfulness of the contract (authorship of which was pointedly denied by both counsel for the government and the private respondent during the oral argument on this case). but they have not succeeded in disproving the obvious.7. (Emphasis supplied). Davide." Even on the assumption that it is PCSO that will be operating the lottery at the very start. company or entity.. to show that it is only after eight years from the effectivity of the contract that PCSO will actually operate the lottery. PCSO will be able to effectively take-over the Facilities and efficiently operate the On-Line Lottery System. it cannot. Upon effectivity of this Contract. Lawyers have a special talent to disguise the real intention of the parties in a contract to make it come ostensibly within the provisions of a law although the real if furtive purpose is to violate it. I am glad we are not succumbing to this sophistry. with PCSO acting as "the sole and individual operator" of the lottery. establish a radio communications network throughout the country as part of the operation. Blg. Jr. bear all expenses relating to the operation. to wit. Par. to be sure. that the document was intentionally so crafted to make it appear that the operation is not a joint undertaking of PCSO and PGMC but a mere lease of services. but we are. I will add the following personal observations only for emphasis as it is not necessary to supplement his thorough exposition. 6. That talent has been exercised in this case. and assume all risks if the revenues from ticket sales are insufficient to pay the entire prize money.# Separate Opinions CRUZ. including those for the salaries and wages of the administrative and technical personnel. In the meantime. The respondents take great pains to cite specific provisions of the contract to show that it is PCSO that is actually operating the online lottery. as the respondents pretend. undertake a positive advertising and promotion campaign for public support of the lottery. Citing the self-serving provisions of the contract. gratifyingly. commence the training of PCSO and other local personnel and the transfer of technology and expertise. that is to say during the entire 8-year term of the contract. Act No. such that at the end of the term of this Contract. from the adroit way the contract has been drafted." which is prohibited by Section 1 of Rep. but not convincingly enough. Only "at the end of the term of this Contract" will PCSO "be able to effectively take-over the Facilities and efficiently operate the OnLine Lottery System. It is a clever instrument.

I reach a different conclusion in respect of the presence or absence of locus standi on the part of the petitioners in the case before the Court.. not a single solitary citizen can question the agreement. JJ. considering that PGMC does not collect the usual fixed rentals due an ordinary lessor but is entitled to a special "Rental Fee.it needs the assistance of PGMC for this purpose. As I remarked in my dissent in Guazon v. no matter how PGMC's assistance is called or the contract is denominated. 257 . I propose to address only the question of locus standi. it will induce in PGMC an active interest and participation in the success of PCSO that is not expected of an ordinary detached lessor who gets to be paid his rentals — not a rental fee — whether the lessee's business prospers or not. "It is not only the owner of the burning house who has the right to call the firemen. It is with some hesitation that I do so. and with the active collaboration and encouragement of our own government at that. PGMC's share in the operation depends on its own performance and the effectiveness of its collaboration with PCSO. De Villa. which naturally does not have the same concern for our interests as we ourselves have. "equal to four point nine percent (4. which. let it be added. I agree with the great deal of what my brothers Melo. I cannot agree that out of the sixty million Filipinos affected by the proposed lottery. both in respect of the question of locus standi and in respect of the merits of this case. PGMC is a co-investor with PCSO in what is practically. Even if it be conceded that the assistance partakes of a lease of services. J. how will it be operating the lottery? Undoubtedly. Feliciano. Jr." The flexibility of this amount is significant. PGMC is plainly a partner of PCSO in violation of law. I am distressed that foreigners should be allowed to exploit the weakness of some of us for instant gain without work." What is especially galling is that the transaction in question would foist upon our people an essentially immoral activity through the instrumentality of a foreign corporation.9%) of gross receipts from ticket sales. there is an internal need (a need internal to myself) to articulate the considerations which led me to that conclusion.. which was its reason for entering into the contract in the first place. Puno and Vitug say about locus standi in their separate opinions and there is no need to go over the ground that I share with them. association or joint venture" with PGMC. PGMC will be functioning independently in the discharge of its own assigned role as stipulated in detail under the contract. Every one has the right and responsibility to prevent the fire from spreading even if he lives in the other block. however. a joint venture. Because. As may be expected. And when PCSO does avail itself of such assistance. that is. Puno and Vitug. concurring I agree with the conclusions reached by my distinguished brother in the Court Davide.. considering the extensive separate opinions on this question written by my learned brothers Melo. will not be serving as a mere "hired help" of PCSO subject to its control. In this separate opinion. 181 SCRA 623. if not in a strictly legal sense. Although the contract pretends otherwise. it will be doing so "in collaboration." as the contract calls it. J. Concerning the doctrine of locus standi. the issues of legality and constitutionality of the Contract of Lease entered into between the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) and the Philippine Gaming Management Corporation (PGMC). the undeniable fact is that PCSO would still be collaborating or cooperating with PGMC in the operation of the lottery. What is even worse is that PCSO and PGMC may be actually engaged in a joint venture. Locus standi is not such an absolute rule that it cannot admit of exceptions under certain conditions or circumstances like those attending this transaction.

My learned brothers Melo. in the present case. The funds to be generated by the proposed lottery are to be raised from the population at large. in each and every case. It might. They insist. understood as the authority of courts (more specifically the Supreme Court) to assay contested legislative and executive acts in terms of their constitutionality or legality. JJ. that is. waiting to be discovered. or in what types of cases. the petition becomes vulnerable to prompt dismissal by the court. Certainly that is the case where great issues of public law are at stake. whether in our jurisdiction or in the United States. a rigid and absolute requirement for access to the courts. the exercise of judicial power and carrying out of judicial functions commonly take place within the context of actual cases or controversies. are designed to benefit the general public. Thus. the court should insist on a clear showing of locus standi understood as a direct and personal interest in the sub