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Rama v.

Moises - Cebu, being reclassified as an HUC shall be independent of the

G.R. No. 197146 | December 6, 2016 | Bersamin, J. province
Petitioners: Hon. Michael Rama (Mayor of Cebu) et al. o All matters relating to its administration, powers and
Respondents: Hon. Gilbert Moises (Judge RTC Cebu) et al. functions were exercised through all the local executives led
by the Mayor subject to the residual powers of the President
FACTS (power of general supervision)
- By virtue of PD 198, Cebu City formed the Metro Cebu Water District - To conform with the local autonomy guarantees of the Constitution, it
(MCWD) in 1974 thereafter, cities of Mandaue, Lapu-Lapu and becomes the duty of the court to declare and pronounce Section 3b
Talisay, and municipalities of Liloan, Compostela, Consolacion, and of PD 198 as partly unconstitutional
Codova turned over their waterworks systems and services to - It is the local government of the HUC to determine the needs of the
MCWD and since then, it has distributed and sold water services to constituents and cater to such needs based on the particular
said cities and municipalities circumstances of their localities
- From 1974 to 2002, Cebu City Mayor appointed all members of the o Any law infringing on the autonomy and on their rights and
MCWD Board of Directors in accordance with the PD powers to efficiently and effectively address the needs of the
o (non-verbatim) Section 3b Appointing Authority The constituents must be declared void because we should
person empowered to appoint the members of the Board always lean in favor of autonomy
shall be dependent on the geographic coverage and
population make-up of the district, in the event that more DISPOSITION
than 75% of total active water service connections are - Petition is granted. Section 3b is declared unconstitutional to the
within the boundary of any city or municipality, extent that it applies to HUCs and component cities with charters
appointing authority must be the mayor of that city or expressly providing that their voters are not eligible to vote for
municipality otherwise, its the governor. provincial officials.
- In July 2002, Cebu Governor Pablo Garcia wrote to the MCWD
asserting his authority and intent to appoint members of the board
stating that as the governor, he was the proper appointing authority
- MCWD commenced with the RTC an action for declaratory relief
seeking to declare Section 3b of PD 198 unconstitutional or should it
be valid that the mayor of Cebu as the proper authority to appoint
- RTC dismissed the action.
- In the meantime, there were 2 vacancies in the board and to avoid a
vacuum, the Governor and Mayor of Cebu jointly appointed to fill the
- Several complaints were filed to declare appointment of several
people as void

1. W/N the provision providing for the appointing authority is
unconstitutional for violating the local autonomy and independence of
HUCs? Partly.


- Section 3b is repugnant to the local autonomy granted by the 1987
Constitution to LGUs and is inconsistent with the Local Government
Code of 1991
- PD 198 was issued at the time when Cebu City was still a
component city of the Cebu Province