G.R. No.


September 15, 1934

PANGASINAN TRANSPORTATION COMPANY, petitioner-appellant, vs. MANILA RAILROAD COMPANY, respondent-appellee. Facts: Pangasinan Transportation Co submits before the SC a petition questioning the grant of the Public Service Commission a certificate of public convenience to Manila Railroad Company and asserts that this is an error since this will invade the regular route adequately and efficiently served by the PTC. Route of PTC Province of Pangasinan and other provinces. MRC operates the Benguet Auto Line from Baguio by way of Kennon Road to Sison. MRC desires to extend its autoline from Sison to Binalonan via Pozorrubio in the Prov of Pangasinan. Issue: WON PSC s order is reasonable supported by evidence. Held: No. Two criteria for public convenience certificate: 1. 2. Convenience of the Public. Investments made by public service operators be protected rather than destroyed.

It requires no vast amount of imagination to visualize the company extending its line to the next municipality and so on indefinitely, to the great disadvantage of other operators and with the result that they would be deprived of substantial revenue. With all due respect to the Public Service Commission which we are the first to uphold when its decisions can be justified, we are unable to put the stamp of our approval on the principle it has invoked and sanctioned in this case. G.R. No. L-37878 November 25, 1932


Facts: The Manila Electric Company filed a petition before the court requesting the members of the Supreme Court sitting as board of arbitrators to fix the terms upon which certain transportation companies shall be permitted to use the Pasig bridge of the MERALCO. MERALCO submits the petition before the court by virtue of Act No. 1446, section 11 which states: Whenever any franchise or right of way is granted to any other person or corporation, now or hereafter in existence, over portions of the lines and tracks of the grantee herein, the terms on which said other person or corporation shall use such right of way, and the compensation to be paid to the grantee herein by such other person or corporation for said use, shall be fixed by the members of the Supreme Court sitting as a board of arbitrators, the decision of a majority of whom shall be final. AKA: For every franchise granted, terms as to the usage and compensation to be paid to the grantee shall be fixed by the members of the SC sitting as board of arbitrators, a majority vote is required and this is final. Copies were sent to affected transpo company (one of which is the Pasay Transpo) and to Atty-Gen which disclaimed any interest. Frameworks of the statute: 1. 2. SC sitting as board of arbitrators and as an entity Decision is final

However, their convenience is more fancied than real, for the busses of Pangasinan Transportation company and the Manila Railroad Company meet at Sison and if there is any difference in the hour of meeting this could readily be arranged. It has further been established that from June, 1932, to May, 1933, the Pangasinan Transportation Company lost P2,733.29 on this line alone. Under these conditions, can it be said that public necessity is more compelling than what amounts to ruinous competition? The true effect of granting the petition of the Manila Railroad Company would be to force the Pangasinan Transportation Company out of the SisonPozorrubio-Binalonan territory.


Franchise granted to Meralco although only a contract bet parties to it is now affecting rights of persons not signatories to it

would result in the performance of duties which the members of the Supreme Court could not lawfully take it upon themselves to perform.

The parties to an arbitration may not oust the courts of jurisdiction of the matters submitted to arbitration. It has been held that a clause in a contract, providing that all matters in dispute between the parties shall be referred to arbitrators and to them alone, is contrary to public policy and cannot oust the courts of jurisdiction. Issue: WON the members of the SC can sit as arbitrators and fix the terms and compensation as is asked of them in this case Held: No. MERALCO is banking on the case of Tallassee Falls Mfg Co vs Commissioners Court where it was held that a state legislature authorizing the commissioners' court of a certain county to regulate and fix the rate of toll to be charged by the owners of a bridge is not unconstitutional as delegating legislative power to the courts. But that is not the question before us. Here the question is not one of whether or not there has been a delegation of legislative authority to a court. More precisely, the issue concerns the legal right of the members of the Supreme Court, sitting as a board of arbitrators the decision of a majority of whom shall be final, to act in that capacity. Dilemma of the court: 1. SC sitting as board of arbitrators exercising judicial functions

Ratio: It is judicial power and judicial power only which is exercised by the Supreme Court. Just as the Supreme Court, as the guardian of constitutional rights, should not sanction usurpations by any other department of the government. Its power should be confined strictly within that granted by the Organic Act. Exercise of jurisdiction by the SC cannot mean exercise of jurisdiction by the members of the SC sitting as board of arbitrators. Chief Justice Taney: The award of execution is a part, and an essential part of every judgment passed by a court exercising judicial power. It is no judgment, in the legal sense of the term, without it. Without such an award the judgment would be inoperative and nugatory, leaving the aggrieved party without a remedy. It would be merely an opinion, which would remain a dead letter, and without any operation upon the rights of the parties, unless Congress should at some future time sanction it, and pass a law authorizing the court to carry its opinion into effect. This is not the judicial power confided to the SC in the exercise of its appellate jurisdiction. Section 11 of Act No. 1446 contravenes the Organic Act and it would be illegal for the members of the SC to sit as arbitrators, the decision of a majority to be final, to act on the petition of MERALCO.

Case 1 would not fall within the jurisdiction granted the SC = if it does, it would mean that the courts would be ousted of jurisdiction and render the award a nullity. If this is the proper construction, we would then have the anomaly of a decision by the members of the Supreme Court, sitting as a board of arbitrators, taken therefrom to the courts and eventually coming before the Supreme Court, where the Supreme Court would review the decision of its members acting as arbitrators

G.R. No. L-28790 2. Members of the SC sitting as arbitrators, exercising administrative or quasi judicial functions.

April 29, 1968

Case 2 would mean that members of the Supreme Court, sitting as a board of arbitrators, be considered as administrative or quasi judicial in nature, that

ANTONIO H. NOBLEJAS, as Commissioner of Land Registration, petitioner, vs. CLAUDIO TEEHANKEE, as Secretary of Justice, and RAFAEL M. SALAS, as Executive Secretary, respondents.

Facts: Petitioner Antonio H. Noblejas is the duly appointed, confirmed and qualified Commissioner of Land Registration, a position created by Republic Act No. 1151. He is "entitled to the same compensation, emoluments and privileges as those of a Judge of the Court of First Instance. On March 7, 1968, respondent Secretary of Justice coursed to the petitioner a letter requiring him to explain in writing not later than March 9, 1968 why no disciplinary action should be taken against petitioner for "approving or recommending approval of subdivision, consolidation and consolidatedsubdivision plans covering areas greatly in excess of the areas covered by the original titles." He answered the Secretary of Justice cannot suspend nor investigate since it can only done so in the same manner as a judge of the CFI and therefore papers relative to his case should be submitted to the SC. He received a letter signed by the Exec Sec that by virtue of the authority of the President, he is suspended for gross neglingence and conduct prejudicial to the public interest. Hence his petition before the SC claiming the lack of jurisdiction and abuse of discretion of the Secretary of Justice. Issue: whether the Commissioner of Land Registration may only be investigated by the Supreme Court, in view of the conferment upon him by the Statute. Held: No. One, Section 67 of the Judiciary Act providing for investigation, suspension or removal of Judges, specifically recites that "No District Judge shall be separated or removed from office by the President of the Philippines unless sufficient cause shall exist in the judgment of the Supreme Court . . ." and it is nowhere claimed, much less shown, that the Commissioner of Land Registration is a District Judge, or in fact a member of the Judiciary at all. Two, petitioner's theory that the grant of "privileges of a Judge of First Instance" includes by implication the right to be investigated only by the Supreme Court and to be suspended or removed upon its recommendation, would necessarily result in the same right being possessed by a variety of executive officials upon whom the Legislature had indiscriminately conferred the same.

To adopt petitioner's theory, therefore, would mean placing upon the Supreme Court the duty of investigating and disciplining all these officials, whose functions are plainly executive, and the consequent curtailment by mere implication from the Legislative grant, of the President's power to discipline and remove administrative officials who are presidential appointees, and which the Constitution expressly placed under the President's supervision and control. It is not the intention of the Legislature when it granted these executive officials the rank and privileges of Judges of First Instance. If it were, it should have clearly done so just like how it expressly provides that Judges of CAR and CTA are to be removed from office from the same causes and in the same manner provided by law for Judges of First Instance or members of the judiciary of appellate rank. It is also true for the Commissioner of Public Service. If the Legislature had really intended to include in the general grant of "privileges" or "rank and privileges of Judges of the Court of First Instance" the right to be investigated by the Supreme Court, and to be suspended or removed only upon recommendation of that Court, then such grant of privileges would be unconstitutional, since it would violate the fundamental doctrine of separation of powers, by charging this court with the administrative function of supervisory control over executive officials, and simultaneously reducing pro tanto the control of the Chief Executive over such officials. Justice Cardozo in In Re Richardson said: There is no inherent power in the Executive or Legislature to charge the judiciary with administrative functions except when reasonably incidental to the fulfillment of judicial duties. The SC is invested with judicial power only. It cannot give decisions which are merely advisory; nor can it exercise or participate in the exercise of functions which are essentially legislative or administrative. In this spirit, it has been held that the Supreme Court of the Philippines and its members should not and cannot be required to exercise any power or to perform any trust or to assume any duty not pertaining to or connected with the administration of judicial functions; and a law requiring the Supreme Court to arbitrate disputes between public utilities was pronounced void in Manila Electric Co. vs. Pasay Transportation Co. Petioner Noblejas tried to exculpate himself by claiming that under section 4 of RA 1151, he is endowed with judicial functions. Serious doubt may well be entertained as to whether the resolution of a consulta by a Register of Deeds is a judicial function, as contrasted with administrative process. His decision shall be conclusive and binding upon all

Registers of Deeds" alone, and not upon other parties. That the Commissioner's resolutions are appealable does not prove that they are not administrative; any bureau director's ruling is likewise appealable to the corresponding department head. But even granting that the resolution of consultas by the Register of Deeds should constitute a judicial (or more properly quasi judicial) function, analysis of the powers and duties of the Land Registration Commissioner under Republic Act No. 1151, sections 3 and 4, will show that the resolution of consultas are but a minimal portion of his administrative or executive functions and merely incidental to the latter. Conformably to the well-known principle of statutory construction that statutes should be given, whenever possible, a meaning that will not bring them in conflict with the Constitution, A.M. No. 198-J May 31, 1971 PAZ M. GARCIA, complainant, vs. HON. CATALINO MACARAIG, JR., respondent.