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Marcos v.

Manglapus, 177 SCRA 668 (1989); MR, 178 SCRA 760 (1989)

Facts:
Former President Ferdinand E. Marcos was deposed from the presidency via the non-violent “people
power” revolution and was forced into exile. Marcos, in his deathbed, has signified his wish to return
to the Philippines to die. But President Corazon Aquino, considering the dire consequences to the
nation of his return at a time when the stability of government is threatened from various directions
and the economy is just beginning to rise and move forward, has stood firmly on the decision to bar
the return of Marcos and his family.
Marcos filed for a petition of mandamus and prohibition to order the respondents to issue them their
travel documents and prevent the implementation of President Aquino’s decision to bar Marcos from
returning in the Philippines.
Issue:

1. Whether or not, in the exercise of the powers granted by the Constitution, the President may
prohibit the Marcoses from returning to the Philippines.
2. Whether or not the President acted arbitrarily or with grave abuse of discretion amounting to
lack or excess of jurisdiction when she determined that the return of the Marcoses to the
Philippines poses a serious threat to national interest and welfare and decided to bar their
return.

Decision:
No to both issues. Petition dismissed.
Ratio:
Separation of power dictates that each department has exclusive powers. According to Section 1,
Article VII of the 1987 Philippine Constitution, “the executive power shall be vested in the President
of the Philippines.” However, it does not define what is meant by “executive power” although in the
same article it touches on exercise of certain powers by the President, i.e., the power of control over
all executive departments, bureaus and offices, the power to execute the laws, the appointing power
to grant reprieves, commutations and pardons… (art VII secfs. 14-23). Although the constitution
outlines tasks of the president, this list is not defined & exclusive. She has residual & discretionary
powers not stated in the Constitution which include the power to protect the general welfare of the
people. She is obliged to protect the people, promote their welfare & advance national interest. (Art.
II, Sec. 4-5 of the Constitution). Residual powers, according to Theodore Roosevelt, dictate that the
President can do anything which is not forbidden in the Constitution (Corwin, supra at
153), inevitable to vest discretionary powers on the President (Hyman, American President) and
that the president has to maintain peace during times of emergency but also on the day-to-day
operation of the State.
For issue number 2, the question for the court to determine is whether or not there exist factual basis
for the President to conclude that it was in the national interest to bar the return of the Marcoses in
the Philippines. It is proven that there are factual bases in her decision. The supervening events that
happened before her decision are factual. The President must take preemptive measures for the
self-preservation of the country & protection of the people. She has to uphold the Constitution.