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G.R. No. L-25554 October 4, Section 1, paragraph 1, of Republic Act June 30, 1966 . . .

1966 No. 4134 provided, inter alia, that the P29,129.00


annual salary of the President of the
PHILIPPINE CONSTITUTION Senate and of the Speaker of the House MEMBERS
ASSOCIATION, INC., petitioner, of Representatives shall be P40,000.00
vs. each; that of the Senators and members 2. One hundred three
ISMAEL MATHAY and JOSE of the House of Representatives, Members of the House of
VELASCO, respondents. P32,000.00 each (thereby increasing Representatives at
their present compensation of P7,200 from July 1 to
Roman Ozaeta and Felixberto Serrano P16,000.00 and P7,200.00 per annum December 29, 1965
for petitioner. for the Presiding officers and members, and P32,000 from
Office of the Solicitor General for respectively, as set in the Constitution). December 30, 1965 to
respondents. The section expressly provided that "the June 30, 1966
salary increases herein fixed shall take 2,032,866.00
effect in accordance with the provisions
REYES, J.B.L., J.:
of the Constitution". Section 7 of the
while for the Senate the corresponding
same Act provides "that the salary
The Philippine Constitution Association, appropriation items appear to be:
increase of the President of the Senate
a non-stock, non-profit association duly and of the Speaker of the House of
incorporated and organized under the Representatives shall take effect on the 1. The President of the
laws of the Philippines, and whose effectivity of the salary increase of Senate . . . . . . . . P
members are Filipino citizens and Congressmen and Senators. 16,000.00
taxpayers, has filed in this Court a suit
against the former Acting Auditor 2. Twenty-three Senators
The Appropriation Act (Budget) for the
General of the Philippines and Jose at P7,200 . . .
Fiscal Year July 1, 1965, to June 30,
Velasco, Auditor of the Congress of the . 165,600.00.
1966 (Republic Act No. 4642) contained
Philippines, duly assigned thereto by the
the following items for the House of
Auditor General as his representative, Thus showing that the 1965-1966
Representatives:
seeking to permanently enjoin the Budget (R.A. No. 4642) implemented the
aforesaid officials from authorizing or increase in salary of the Speaker and
passing in audit the payment of the SPEAKER
members of the House of
increased salaries authorized by Representatives set by Republic Act
Republic Act No. 4134 (approved June 1. The Speaker of the
4134, approved just the preceding year
10, 1964) to the Speaker and members House of
1964.
of the House of Representatives before Representatives at
December 30, 1969. Subsequently, P16,000 from July 1 to
December 29, 1965 The petitioners contend that such
Ismael Mathay, present Auditor General,
and P40,000 from implementation is violative of Article VI,
was substituted for Amable M. Aguiluz,
December 30, 1965 to Section 14, of the Constitution, as
former Acting Auditor General.
amended in 1940, that provides as the members of the House who present members of the Lower House
follows: participated in the approval of said Act are concerned, for they were elected in
expired on December 30, 1965. 1965, subsequent to the passage of
SEC. 14. The Senators and the Republic Act 4134. Their stand, in short,
Members of the House of From the record we also glean that upon is that the expiration of the term of the
Representatives shall, unless receipt of a written protest from members of the House of
otherwise provided by law, petitioners (Petition, Annex "A"), along Representatives who approved the
receive an annual compensation the lines summarized above, the then increase suffices to make the higher
of seven thousand two hundred Auditor General requested the Solicitor compensation effective for them,
pesos each, including per diems General to secure a judicial construction regardless of the term of the members of
and other emoluments or of the law involved (Annex "B"); but the the Senate.
allowances, and exclusive only of Solicitor General evaded the issue by
traveling expenses to and from suggesting that an opinion on the matter The procedural points raised by
their respective districts in the be sought from the Secretary of Justice respondent, through the Solicitor
case of Members of the House of (Annex "C", Petition). Conformably to the General, as their counsel, need not give
Representatives, and to and from suggestion, the former Acting Auditor pause. As taxpayers, the petitioners may
their places of residence in the General endorsed the PHILCONSA letter bring an action to restrain officials from
case of Senators, when attending to the Secretary of Justice on November wasting public funds through the
sessions of the Congress. No 26, 1965; but on or before January, enforcement of an invalid or
increase in said compensation 1966, and before the Justice Secretary unconstitutional law (Cf. PHILCONSA vs.
shall take effect until after the could act, respondent Aguiluz, as former Gimenez, L-23326, December 18, 1965;
expiration of the full term of all Acting Auditor General, directed his Tayabas vs. Perez, 56 Phil. 257; Pascual
the Members of the Senate and representative in Congress, respondent vs. Secretary of Public Works L-10405,
of the House of Representatives Velasco, to pass in audit and approve December 29, 1960; Pelaez vs. Auditor
approving such, increase. Until the payment of the increased salaries General, L-23825, December 24, 1965;
otherwise provided by law, the within the limits of the Appropriation Act Iloilo Palay & Corn Planters Association
President of the Senate and the in force; hence the filing of the present vs. Feliciano, L-24022, March 3, 1965).
Speaker of the House of action. Moreover, as stated in 52 Am. Jur., page
Representatives shall each 5:
receive an annual compensation The answer of respondents pleads first
of sixteen thousand pesos. the alleged lack of personality of The rule that a taxpayer can not,
(Emphasis supplied) petitioners to institute the action, for lack in his individual capacity as such,
of showing of injury; and that the sue to enjoin an unlawful
The reason given being that the term of Speaker and Members of the House expenditure or waste of state
the eight senators elected in 1963, and should be joined parties defendant. On funds is the minority doctrine.
who took part in the approval of Republic the merits, the answer alleges that the
Act No. 4134, will expire only on protested action is in conformity with the On the alleged non-joinder of the
December 30, 1969; while the term of Constitutional provisions, insofar as members of the Lower House of
Congress as parties defendants, suffice deterrent factor to any such measure accords in turn with the fact that the
it to say that since the acts sought to be unless the need for it is clearly felt" enactment of laws rests on the shoulders
enjoined were the respondents' passing (Tañada & Fernando, Constitution of the of the entire Legislative body;
in audit and the approval of the payment Philippines, Vol. 2, p. 867). responsibility therefor is not
of the Representatives' increased apportionable between the two
salaries, and not the collection or receipt Significantly, in establishing what might chambers.
thereof, only respondent auditors were be termed a waiting period before the
indispensable or proper parties increased compensation for legislators It is also highly relevant, in the Court's
defendant to this action. becomes fully effective, the constitutional opinion, to note that, as reported by
provision refers to "all the members of Aruego (Framing of the Constitution, Vol.
These preliminary questions out of the the Senate and of the House of 1, p. 296, et. seq.), the committee on
way, we now proceed to the main issue: Representatives" in the same sentence, legislative power in the Constitutional
Does Section 14, Art. VI, of the as a single unit, without distinction or Convention of 1934, before it was
Constitution require that not only the separation between them. This unitary decided that the Legislature should be
term of all the members of the House but treatment is emphasized by the fact that bicameral in form, initially recommended
also that of all the Senators who the provision speaks of the "expiration of that the increase in the compensation of
approved the increase must have fully the full term" of the Senators and legislators should not take effect until the
expired before the increase becomes Representatives that approved the expiration of the term of office
effective? Or, on the contrary, as measure, using the singular form, and of all members of the Legislature that
respondents contend, does it allow the not the plural, despite the difference in approved the increase. The report of the
payment of the increased compensation the terms of office (six years for Senators committee read as follows:
to the members of the House of and four for Representatives thereby
Representatives who were elected after rendering more evident the intent to The Senator and
the expiration of the term of those House consider both houses for the purpose as Representatives shall receive for
members who approved the increase, indivisible components of one single their services an annual
regardless of the non-expiration of the Legislature. The use of the word "term" compensation of four thousand
terms of office of the Senators who, in the singular, when combined with the pesos including per diems and
likewise, participated in the approval of following phrase "all the members of the other emoluments or allowances
the increase? Senate and of the House", underscores and exclusive of travelling
that in the application of Article VI, expenses to and from their
It is admitted that the purpose of the Section 14, the fundamental respective residences when
provision is to place "a legal bar to the consideration is that the terms of office attending sessions of the
legislators yielding to the natural of all members of the Legislature that National Legislature, unless
temptation to increase their salaries. Not enacted the measure (whether Senators otherwise fixed by law: Provided,
that the power to provide for higher or Representatives) must have expired That no increase in this yearly
compensation is lacking, but with the before the increase in compensation can compensation shall take effect
length of time that has to elapse before become operative. Such disregard of the until after the expiration of the
an increase becomes effective, there is a separate houses, in favor of the whole, terms of office of all the Members
of the Legislature that approved Senate and of the House of It is also contended that there is
such increase. (Emphasis Representatives approving such significance in the use of the words "of
supplied) . increase. the" before "House" in the provision
being considered, and in the use of the
The spirit of this restrictive proviso, It is apparent that throughout its changes phrase "of the Senate and of the House"
modified to suit the final choice of a of phraseology the plain spirit of the when it could have employed the shorter
unicameral legislature, was carried over restriction has not been altered. From expression "of the Senate and
and made more rigid in the first draft of the first proposal of the committee on the the House". It was grammatically correct
the constitutional provision, which read: legislative power of the 1934 Convention to refer to "the members of the Senate
down to the present, the intendment of and (the members) of the House",
Provided, That any increase in said the clause has been to require expiration because the members of the Senate are
compensation shall not take effect until of the full term of all members of the not members of the House. To speak of
after the expiration of the term of office of Legislature that approved the higher "members of the Senate and the House"
the Members of the National Assembly compensation, whether the Legislature would imply that the members of the
who may be elected subsequent to the be unicameral or bicameral, in order to Senate also held membership in the
approval of such increase. (Aruego, 1, p. circumvent, as far as possible, the House.
297) influence of self-interest in its adoption.
The argument that if the intention was to
As recorded by the Committee on Style, The Solicitor General argues on behalf of require that the term of office of the
and as finally approved and enacted, the respondents that if the framers of the Senators, as well as that of the
Article VI, section 5, of the Constitution 1940 amendments to the Constitution Representatives, must all expire the
of the Commonwealth, provided that: had intended to require the expiration of Constitution would have spoken of the
the terms not only of the Representatives "terms" (in the plural) "of the members of
but also of the Senators who approved the Senate and of the House", instead of
No increase in said compensation shall
the increase, they would have just used using "term" in the singular (as the
take effect until after the expiration of the
the expression "term of all the members Constitution does in section 14 of Article
full term of the Members of the National
of the Congress" instead of specifying VI), has been already considered. As
Assembly elected subsequent to the
"all the members of the Senate and of previously observed, the use of the
approval of such increase.
the House". This is a distinction without a singular form "term" precisely
difference, since the Senate and the emphasizes that in the provision in
Finally, with the return to bicameralism in question the Constitution envisaged both
House together constitute the Congress
the 1940 amendments to our legislative chambers as one single unit,
or Legislature. We think that the reason
fundamental law, the limitation assumed and this conclusion is reinforced by the
for specifying the component chambers
its present form: expression employed, "until the
was rather the desire to emphasize the
transition from a unicameral to a expiration of the full term of ALL the
No increase in said compensation shall bicameral legislature as a result of the members of the Senate and of the
take effect until after the expiration of the 1940 amendments to the Constitution. House of Representatives approving
full term of all the Members of the such increase".
It is finally urged that to require the (4) years under the original restriction, increase) would end in December
expiration of the full term of the Senators because to the last year of the term of 30,1941.
before the effectivity of the increased the approving assemblymen the full 3-
compensation would subject the present year term of their successors must be Again, under the present Constitution, if
members of the House of added. Once again an identical period the increase is approved in the 1965
Representatives to the same restrictions must elapse under the 1940 amendment: sessions immediately preceding the
as under the Constitution prior to its because one-third of the Senators are elections in November of that year, the
amendment. It may well be wondered elected every two years, so that just higher compensation would be operative
whether this was not, in fact, the design before a given election four of the only on December 30, 1969, also four
of the framers of the 1940 constitutional approving Senators' full six-year term still years later, because the most recently
amendments. For under either the remain to run. elected members of the Senate would
original limitation or the present one, as then be Senators chosen by the electors
amended, as maximum delay of six (6) To illustrate: if under the original in November of 1963, and their term
years and a minimum of four (4) is Constitution the assemblymen elected in, would not expire until December 30,
necessary before an increase of say, 1935 were to approve an increase 1969.
legislators' compensation can take effect. of pay in the 1936 sessions, the new pay
would not be effective until after the This coincidence of minimum and
If that increase were approved in the expiration of the term of the succeeding maximum delays under the original and
session immediately following an assemblymen elected in 1938; i.e., the the amended constitution can not be just
election, two assemblymen's terms, of 3 increase would not be payable until due to accident, and is proof that the
years each, had to elapse under the December 30, 1941, six years after intent and spirit of the Constitutional
former limitation in order that the 1935. Under the present Constitution, if restriction on Congressional salaries has
increase could become operative, the higher pay were approved in 1964 been maintained unaltered. But whether
because the original Constitution with the participation of Senators elected designed or not, it shows how unfounded
required that the new emolument should in 1963, the same would not be is the argument that by requiring
operate only after expiration of the term collectible until December 30, 1969, members of the present House to await
of assemblymen elected subsequently to since the said Senators' term would the expiration of the term of the
those who approved it (Art. VI, sec. 5), expire on the latter date. Senators, who concurred in approving
and an assemblyman's term was then 3 the increase in compensation, they are
years only. Under the Constitution, as But if the assemblymen elected in 1935 placed in a worse position than under the
amended, the same interval obtains, (under the original Constitution) were to Constitution as originally written.
since Senators hold office for six (6) approve the increase in compensation,
years. not in 1936 but in 1938 (the last of their The reason for the minimum interval of
3-year term), the new compensation four years is plainly to discourage the
On the other hand, if the increase of would still operate on December 30, approval of increases of compensation
compensation were approved by the 1941, four years later, since the term of just before an election by legislators who
legislature on its last session just prior to assemblymen elected in November of can anticipate their reelection with more
an election, the delay is reduced to four 1938 (subsequent to the approval of the or less accuracy. This salutary
precaution should not be nullified by of the increased compensation the Congress approving such
resorting to technical and involved authorized by Republic Act No. 4134 for increase.
interpretation of the constitutional Senators and members of the House of
mandate. Representatives, before December 30, They maintain that in specifying "the
1969. No costs. Senate" and "the House" instead of just
In resume, the Court agrees with using the words "the Congress" the body
petitioners that the increased We concur in the foregoing opinion and obviously considered that inasmuch as
compensation provided by Republic Act in the concurring opinions of Justices the terms of the Representatives and
No. 4134 is not operative until December Bengzon, Zaldivar and Castro. Senators under the legislature provided
30, 1969, when the full term of all for, would not necessarily coincide, the
members of the Senate and House that Concepcion, C.J., Barrera, Dizon, effective date of the increased salary of
approved it on June 20, 1964 will have Regala, Makalintal and Sanchez, the Representatives could also be
expired. Consequently, appropriation for JJ., concur. different from that of the Senators.
such increased compensation may not
be disbursed until December 30, 1969. The fact that "Congress" is not used in
In so far as Republic Act No. 4642 the provision in question, in my opinion,
(1965-1966 Appropriation Act) is rather an argument for the petitioner
authorizes the disbursement of the herein. "Congress" is not used, obviously
increased compensation prior to the date Separate Opinions
because after every four years the
aforesaid, it also violates the Constitution Congress is dissolved. On the other
and must be held null and void. BENGZON, J.P., J., concurring: hand, the term of a member of the
Senate, being six years, goes beyond
In view of the foregoing, the writ of Fully concurring with the ponencia of the duration of one Congress and
prohibition prayed for is hereby granted, Justice J.B.L. Reyes, I should like only to extends to that of the next Congress. In
and the items of the Appropriation Act for mention a few thoughts related to some other words, while the term of the
the fiscal year 1965-1966 (Republic Act points contained therein. members of the House of
No. 4642) purporting to authorize the Representatives coincides with the
disbursement of the increased As stated in the majority opinion, it is lifetime of the Congress, the term of a
compensation to members of the Senate argued by respondents that if it was member of the Senate goes beyond the
and the House of Representatives even intended that the increase should take existence of one Congress.
prior to December 30, 1969 are declared effect at the same time, the provision of
void, as violative of Article VI, section 14, the Constitution could have been The Constitution, instead, uses
of the Constitution of the Republic of the phrased as follows: (1) "Senate" and "House of
Philippines; and the respondents, the Representatives" and (2)
Auditor General and the Auditor of the No increase in said adds "all" before "the Members", clearly
Congress of the Philippines, are compensation shall take effect intending that no increase in the
prohibited and enjoined from approving until after the expiration of the full compensation therein provided for shall
and passing in audit any disbursements term of all the Members of take effect until after the expiration of the
term of the most junior among the one involved herein. Yet just the same, ZALDIVAR, J., concurring:
members of the Senate at the time the the Constitution uses the would "term"
increase was approved. Precisely, (singular) to cover all these During the third regular session of the
therefore, because the Constitution different terms of office. Fifth Congress of the Republic of the
speaks of "Senate" and "House of Philippines House Bill No. 6190 was
Representatives" instead I am of the opinion therefore that no approved, and this bill was signed into
of "Congress", the prohibition against other course is open to the Supreme law on June 20, 1964 by the President of
effectivity continues even after the end of Court in this case but to apply the the Philippines and became Republic Act
the Congress which approved the provision of the Constitution restricting No. 4134.
measure and, which amounts to the the increase of salaries of Senators and
same thing, even after the end of the Representatives by subjecting it to a Section 1, paragraph A of Republic Act
term of the members of the House of period of waiting. To forestall the view 4134 provides, among others, that the
Representatives approving the increase. that the Supreme Court thereby offends annual salary of the President of the
In specifying "the expiration of the full equity, because the other Constitutional Senate and of the Speaker of the House
term of all the Members of the officers — including the members of said of Representatives shall be forty
Senate and of the House of Court — are already receiving their thousand pesos, and that of the
Representatives approving such increased salaries under Republic Act Senators and Members of the House of
increase", the Constitution leaves no No. 4134, suffice it to bear in mind that it Representatives shall be thirty-two
doubt that until after the condition is met was within the hands of the legislators thousand pesos each. The paragraph
as to the Senate, no increase in the themselves if they had so desired, to ends with this sentence: "The salary
compensation laid down for Senators have provided that the salary increases increases herein fixed shall take effect in
and Representatives shall take effect. of the aforesaid other Constitution accordance with the provisions of the
officers take effect at the same time as Constitution."
It is also contended by respondents that their own. In other words, if they had
the Constitution in using "term" instead thought it would be inequitable to grant The pertinent provision of the
of "terms" shows the clear intention to salary increases to others before they Constitution as far as the effectivity of
consider the "term" of the Senators could receive their own salary increase any law increasing the compensation of
independently from that of the — an argument which, I am glad to note, the Senators and Members of the House
Representatives. The contention is has not been advanced — they could of Representatives is concerned reads
untenable. The provision clearly have easily provided that the salary as follows:
uses "term" in the general sense. For, increases therein given be effective
otherwise, even in referring to members December 30, 1969, as in their case.
. . . No increase in said
of the Senate alone, it should have
compensation shall take effect
used "terms" since the Senators had I consequently reiterate my concurrence. until after the expiration of the full
originally different terms of office (two,
term of all the Members of the
four and six years), as provided for in
Senate and of the House of
Section 3 of Article VI of the Constitution,
Representatives approving such
a provision contemporaneous with the
increase. . . . (Article VI, Section Senate and of the House of proviso that no person shall serve as
14 of the Constitution) Representatives that approved the President for more than eight
increase in 1964 would expire. And I also consecutive years; and (3) the creation
Inasmuch as House Bill No. 6190 was agree with the opinion that in so far as of the Commission on Elections.
passed during the third regular session Republic Act No. 4642 (Appropriation
of the Fifth Congress of the Philippines, Law for the fiscal year 1965-1966) It is regrettable that the deliberations of
in 1964, said bill was approved by the authorizes the disbursement of the the Second National Assembly on the
House of Representatives whose increased compensation for the 1940 amendments to the Constitution
members were elected in the elections of Members of the House of were mostly done in caucuses behind
November, 1961 and whose term of Representatives prior to December 30, closed doors, and the discussions were
office would expire on December 29, 1960 violates the Constitution and must not recorded. It was during the first
1965; and by the Senate whose be held null and void.. special sessions of the Second National
membership was composed of: eight Assembly in September, 1939 when
Senators who were elected in My opinion in this regard is based upon a discussions on proposed amendments to
November, 1959 and whose term would personal knowledge of how the the Constitution were held. It was only
expire on December 29, 1965; eight constitutional proviso, Article VI, Section after the propose amendments had been
Senators who were elected in 14 of the Constitution, which is now in approved in caucuses when the
November, 1961 and whose term would question, became a part of our present amendments were embodied in a
expire on December 29, 1967; and eight Constitution. It was the Second National resolution and submitted to the National
Senators who were elected in Assembly which amended our original Assembly in open session. The
November, 1963 whose term would Constitution. I was a humble Member of amendments as approved in caucuses
expire on December 29, 1969. the Second National Assembly, were embodied in Resolution No. 38 and
representing the province of Antique. adopted on September 15, 1939.
Mr. Justice J.B.L. Reyes, writing the However, during the second regular
opinion of the Court in the case now The three important amendments that sessions in 1940 Resolution No. 38 was
before Us, interpreting the effectivity were incorporated in our Constitution by amended by Resolution No. 73 which
clause in paragraph A, Section 1 of the Second National Assembly in 1940 was adopted on April 11, 1940. That is
Republic Act 4134 in relation to the were the provisions regarding (1) the how the amendments came to be known
pertinent provision of Article VI, Section establishment of a bicameral legislature as the 1940 Amendments. Those
14, of the Constitution, herein-above composed of a House of amendments were approved in a
quoted, says that the increased Representatives and a Senate, to take plebiscite that was held on June 18,
compensation provided by Republic Act the place of the then existing unicameral 1940.
4134 for the Senators and Members of legislature known as the National
the House of Representatives will not Assembly; (2) the change in the term of I still have vivid recollections of the
take effect until December 30, 1969. I the office of the President of the important points brought up during the
concur with this opinion because it will Philippines, and the Vice-President, deliberations in caucus over proposed
not be until December 29, 1969 when which formerly was for a period of six amendments and of the agreements
the full term of all the Members of the years, to that of four years, with the arrived at. I remember too the influences
that worked, and the pressures that were say. In the case of the legislature, the place every four years there would be
brought to bear upon the Assemblymen, basic idea of having two chambers of the elections for President, Vice-President,
in the efforts to bring about agreements legislature — one chamber serving as a and all the members of the Congress of
on very controversial matters and thus check to the other — was accepted. It the Philippines. However, there was a
secure the insertion of the desired was then considered as a wise idea to very strong advocacy on the part of top
amendments to the Constitution. The have the Senate as the upper chamber, political leaders at that time that the
discussions on the proposed to be composed of members who would Senate should be made a continuing
amendments affecting the legislative be elected at large, and it was expected body, such that the complete
branch of the government were specially that those who would be elected to the membership of that chamber should not
of interest to us then because we were in Senate would be men of national be elected during the national elections
some way personally affected, as most prestige; prestigious because of their that would take place every four years.
of us were interested in running for known integrity, in their record and
reelection. experience as a public servant, or in their Finally, it was agreed that the members
prominence as a successful member of of the Senate, which was decided to be
It is not my purpose here to impose on his profession. It was even said, then, composed of twenty-four, would have a
anyone my recollections of matters that that the Senate would be a training term of six years, one-third of which
were brought up during our caucuses ground for future Presidents of the number would be elected every two
then, but I only wish to emphasize the nation. And so, when it was agreed that years. The idea of having elections of
fact that my concurring opinion in the a bicameral legislature would be one-third of the membership of the
decision of the case now before Us has provided in the Constitution, the next Senate was adjusted to the situation that
for its basis my honest and best matter that had to be considered was the in between two national elections there
recollections of what had transpired, or tenure of office of the members of each were the elections for local officials. The
what had been expressed, during the of the two chambers of the legislature. question regarding the term of office of
caucuses held by the Members of the As far as the terms of the members of the Members of the first Senate to be
Second National Assembly in the the lower chamber, to be known as the elected under the Constitution as
deliberations which later brought about House of Representatives, there was no amended was settled by inserting a
the 1940 amendments. disagreement over the idea that their proviso that the first senators elected
term be for a period of four years, to should, in the manner provided by law,
I distinctly remember that the proposed coincide with the term of the President. be divided equally into three groups: the
amendment to change the legislature But as far as the term of office of the senators of the first group to serve for a
from unicameral to that of bicameral, just members of the upper chamber, to be term of six years, those of the second
as the proposal to change the term of known as the Senate, there was at first a group to serve for a term of four years,
office of the President from six years divergence of opinion. There was a and those of the third group for a term of
without reelection to that of four years group that supported the idea that the two years (Article VI, Section 3). And for
with one reelection, at first met very term of the members of the upper the purposes of the first elections under
strong oppositon by a considerable chamber be four years, similar to that of the amended Constitution
group of Assemblymen. But somehow the House of Representatives, so that in Commonwealth Act No. 666 was
the opposition was finally subdued, so to the national elections that would take enacted by the National Assembly
providing, as far as the first Senate was of the Second National Assembly who constitutional convention that drafted the
concerned, that "The Senate shall, within amended the Constitution in 1940 was to original Constitution, and it was this
ten days after it shall have been provide for an equal compensation for group of Assemblymen that were
organized with the election of its the Members of the Senate and to the zealous in maintaining the idea that one
President, determine by lot which of the Members of the House of full term of a member of the legislature
elected Senators shall belong to the Representatives. subsequent to the approval of the
group who shall serve six years, which to increase in compensation should be
the group who shall serve for four years, When the matter regarding the increase made to lapse before the increase shall
and which to the group which shall serve in the compensation of the Senators and take effect. But this idea could not be
for two years." (Section 9, Com. Act No. of the Representatives came up for insisted upon because while that was
666) consideration, there was unanimity feasible in the case of Members of the
among the Assemblymen in support of National Assembly which was a
When the matter regarding the the idea that members of the Congress unicameral body, that idea could not be
compensation of the members of both of the Philippines may approve a law adopted in a bicameral body where the
chambers came up for the deliberation, increasing their compensation, but that term of office of the members of one
there were proposals that the Senators no Member of the House of chamber was not the same as that of the
be given more compensation than the Representatives or of the Senate that members of the other chamber. I recall
Members of the House of approved the law increasing the that it was finally agreed to simply adopt
Representatives, and a number of compensation should receive the the constitutional precept that no Senator
proposals were presented regarding the increased compensation during their or Member of the House of
amount of compensation that would be term of office when the increase was Representatives may receive any
paid to the Senators or to the approved. I remember that the question increase in compensation, as approved
Representatives, as the case may be. as to when the increase of compensation by the House and the Senate of a
This matter was the subject of long as approved by the Members of the particular Congress, before the
discussions. It was finally agreed that the Congress of the Philippines should take expiration of the term of all the members
amount of compensation for the effect was the subject of a prolonged and of the House of Representatives and of
Senators and for the Members of the heated discussion. Many Members of the the Senate that approved the increase.
House of Representatives be the same, National Assembly wanted to continue Inasmuch as the term of the Members of
and it was fixed at P7,200.00 per annum with the provision of Article VI, Section 5 the House of Representatives is shorter
each, including per diems and other of the original Constitution that "No than that of the Senators, it was
emoluments, exclusive only of travelling increase in said compensation shall take understood that the expiration of the
expenses in going to and returning from effect until after the expiration of the full term of the Members of the Senate that
the sessions. There was an increase of term of the Members of the National approved the increase should be awaited
P2,200.00 over the P5,000.00 per Assembly elected subsequent to the before the increase in compensation
annum that the Members of the National approval of such increase." I have taken would take effect. As finally worded by
Assembly were receiving at the time. It is note that no less than eighteen members the Committee on Style of the Assembly,
thus seen that in the matter of of the Second National Assembly in and that Committee on Style was
compensation the sense of the Members 1940 were members of the 1934 headed by the illustrious and
indefatigable Assemblyman Gregorio increase." It will be noted that this most if not all of my colleagues
Perfecto, who later became a worthy Section 14 starts with using the words understood it.
member of this Court, that constitutional "Senators and Members of the House of
precept which became part of Section Representatives" in referring to the The question precisely was raised
14, Article VI of the amended compensation to be received by each. whether under that constitutional proviso,
Constitution was worded as follows: They are considered individually. But in as above-quoted, the Members of the
the matter of determining the time when House of Representatives who are
No increase in said the increase is to take effect they are elected during the elections subsequent
compensation shall take effect considered as collective by the use of to the approval of the increase by the
until after the expiration of the full the phrase "all the Members of the Congress of the Philippines could
term of all the Members of the Senate and of the House of receive the increased compensation
Senate and of the House of Representatives approving such inasmuch as the term of those Members
Representatives approving such increase." The use of the of the House that had approved the
increase. word all includes every Member of the increase had already expired. I
Senate and of the House of remember that it was the understanding
It should be noted that the above-quoted Representatives, regardless of whether of the Members of the National
portion of Section 14, Article VI of the or not he or she voted affirmatively for Assembly that those members of the
Constitution talks of the "expiration of the the increase. It is the House and the House of Representatives who would be
full term of all the Members" then Senate that approved the increase. And elected subsequent to the approval of
followed by the words "of the Senate and so because the effectiveness of the such increase could not immediately
of the House of Representatives increase depends on the expiration of receive the increased compensation as
approving such increase." This proviso the term of all the members of both approved during the preceding
contemplates not the Representatives or chambers it stands to reason that all the Congress; and neither could the eight
the Senators who voted in favor of the members of the two chambers were Senators who would be elected along
increase, but the Senate and the House taken into consideration, and because with those Representatives in the same
of Representatives as a body that when the increase was approved by the elections. To allow those newly elected
approved the increase. And so, because Senate and the House of Representatives and Senators to receive
the understanding of the amending Representatives there were members of the increased compensation would give
Assemblymen was that the effectiveness the Senate whose term of office was rise to a situation whereby the Members
of the increase should take place after longer than that of some other Members of the House of Representatives and
the expiration of the term of the Senators of the Senate and of the Members of the eight Senators would be receiving a
with the longest term among the House of Representatives it is the term compensation higher than that received
Members of the Senate that of the Senators which was the longest by at least sixteen Members of the
approved the increase the constitutional that should first expire before the Senate, including the President of the
proviso was so worded "shall take effect increase should take effect. That is how I Senate, as the case might happen. That
until after the full term of all the members understood then that portion of Section would be inconsistent with the basic idea
of the Senate and of the House of 14, Article VI of the Constitution, and I adopted by the Members of the National
Representatives approving such sincerely believe that that was also how Assembly that the compensation of the
Members of the House of who were Members of the Senate that elections in November, 1941 who served
Representatives and those of the Senate approved the increase. It is my for a term of six years. The term of the
should be the same; and it is only logical recollection that the main idea of the eight senators who were elected in 1941
that when we say that the compensation Members of the National Assembly in and who would have served for only two
of the Members of the House and of the adopting the proviso in question was to years would have expired on December
Members of the Senate is the same, that maintain the equality of the 29, 1943; and the term of the eight
compensation should be the same not compensation of the Members of the senators who would have served for four
only in amount but also at the same time House of Representatives and of the years would have expired on December
within their respective terms of office. Senate at all times. 29, 1945. The term (4 years) of the
Representatives who were elected in
It was envisaged by the Members of the Three situations were anticipated to November, 1941 would also have
National Assembly that the salary happen by the amending Assemblymen expired on December 29, 1945. But in
increase, under the constitutional proviso under the constitutional proviso in November, 1943 elections for eight
now in question, would become effective question: senators who would serve for a regular
after the lapse of two years, or four term of 6 years would have taken place;
years, as the case may be, after the 1. This is the first situation. Let us take and likewise elections for a full House of
commencement of the term of office of the case of the First Congress of the Representatives and for another set of
those Members of the House of Philippines which was elected in senators to serve for a full term of six
Representatives that are elected in the November, 1941 already under the years would have taken place in
elections subsequent to the approval of Constitution as amended in 1940. This November, 1945. If the war did not upset
the increase. In the case of the lapse of Congress was composed of a House of the national affairs a new Congress
four years, which we have just stated, it Representatives whose members were would have convened in January, 1946,
would mean that it would be the elected for a term of 4 years, to expire on already composed of a House of
Members of the House of December 29, 1945; and of a Senate Representatives and a Senate whose
Representatives who would be elected in composed of eight Senators with a term members would all have been elected for
the second elections subsequent to the of 6 years to expire on December 29, a term of six years each.
approval of the increase who would 1947; eight senators with a term of 4
receive the increased compensation. years to expire on December 29, 1945, So, on December 30, 1947 when the
and eight senators with a term of 2 years increase in the compensation would take
As I have stated, it was the sense of the to expire on December 29, 1943. effect, the increased compensation
Members of the Second National would be uniformly enjoyed
Assembly that approved the If a law increasing the compensation of by all members of Congress (Senators
constitutional amendment in 1940 that Members of Congress was passed and Representatives alike) — those
the increase in the compensation for during the sessions of 1942, supposing Senators who were elected in the 1943,
Members of the House of that there was no war, the increase 1945 and 1947 elections, and by the
Representatives and of the Senate would take effect on December 30, 1947, Members of the House of
would take effect only until after the after the expiration of the term of the Representatives who were elected in the
expiration of the full term of the senators eight senators who were elected in the 1945 elections. Under that situation, the
Members of the House of elected in November, 1953 whose term of the Philippines as an example. Let us
Representatives who were elected in would expire on December 29, 1959; suppose that the law increasing the
1945 would have waited for two years eight who were elected in November, compensation was passed in the third
before they could receive the increased 1951 and whose term would expire on regular session of the Third Congress in
compensation that was approved in the December 29, 1957; and eight who were May, 1956. This time the Third Congress
1942 sessions of Congress. And this is elected in November, 1949 and whose is composed of the same members of
so, because it is on December 29, 1947, term would expire on December 29, the House of Representatives who were
when the six-year term of the eight 1955. elected in November, 1953, but the
Senators who were Members of the Senate has a different composition. The
Senate that approved the increased If a law increasing the salary is passed, Senate would already be composed of
compensation in 1942 (along with the say in the first regular session of the eight new Senators who were elected
then existing House of Representatives) Third Congress in May, 1954, then the during the elections of November, 1955
had expired. increase provided for in this law would and whose term of office would expire on
take effect on December 30, 1959. Why? December 29, 1961, the remaining eight
2. Now let us take the second situation. Because that law was approved by the Senators elected in 1953 and eight
Let us take the case of a Congress that House of Representatives (the term of Senators who were elected in 1951. If
is normally constituted. When I say whose members ended on December the law increasing the compensation is
"normally constituted" I mean a 29, 1957) and by a Senate at least eight passed during the regular session of
Congress composed of a House of of whose members were elected in 1956 this law would be approved by the
Representatives whose members had November, 1953 and whose term of House of Representatives and by the
been elected for a term of four years, office would expire on December 29, Senate that had eight new members
and a Senate that is composed of 1959. That means that the members of whose term would expire on December
Members who had each been elected for the House of Representatives who were 29, 1961. Since the term of these new
a term of six years, although at different elected in the elections of November, eight Senators would expire on
elections, as provided in the Constitution. 1957 (many of whom may be members December 29, 1961, then the increased
of the Third Congress who voted for the compensation would take effect on
We make the Third Congress of the law in May, 1954) would have to wait for December 30, 1961.
Republic of the Philippines as an two years before they could receive the
example. This Congress covered the increased compensation. In other words, In November, 1957 there were elections
period of four years from January, 1954 beginning December 30, 1959, the and a new House of Representatives
to December, 1957, inclusive. During the Members of the House of was then elected, and the term of office
first two years (or two regular sessions) Representatives and all the Members of of the members of the new House would
this Congress was composed of the the Senate (those elected in the 1955, expire on December 29, 1961. Likewise,
House of Representatives whose 1957 and 1959 elections) would all a new set of eight Senators were elected
members were elected in the elections of be uniformly getting the increased salary. whose term would expire on December
November, 1953 and whose term would 29, 1963. Those Members of the House
expire on December 29, 1957; and 3. Let us take the third situation. We still of Representatives who were elected in
twenty-four senators: eight who were use the Third Congress of the Republic November, 1957, among whom perhaps
were Representatives who voted for the regular session of the Third Congress House of Representatives who will be
increase during the 1956 sessions, did not take effect until after the elected in November, 1969, along with
would not enjoy the increased expiration of the full term of the Members the Senators elected in 1965, 1967 and
compensation because their term would of the House who were elected 1969, who will receive this increased
expire on December 29, 1961 — the subsequent to the approval of such compensation. They will then all be
very same date of the termination of the increase. receiving the same compensation during
term of the eight Senators who were the time that they are in office.
elected in 1955 and who were Members The case now before Us is similar to
of the Senate that approved the increase Case No. 3 that we have portrayed I have endeavored to make a discourse
during the session of 1956. In this case above. Republic Act 4134 was approved of facts as I know them, because I
the increased compensation would be during the regular session of the Fifth sincerely believe that the interpretation
received by the Members of the House Congress of the Republic of the embodied in the opinion penned by my
of Representatives who were elected in Philippines in May, 1964 and signed into esteemed colleague, Mr. Justice J.B.L.
the elections of November, 1961, along law by the President on June 20, 1964. Reyes, of the pertinent provision of
with the Senators who were elected in As I have stated earlier, the increase Article VI, Section 14 of our Constitution
November, 1961 and the remaining provided in this law was approved by the is in consonance with the facts and
Senators who were elected in 1959 and House of Representatives whose circumstances as I remember them, and
1957. They would all be receiving members were elected in November, as I know them. As I have stated at the
the same compensation and at the same 1961, and whose term of office expired early part of this concurring opinion, it is
time while they are in office during the on December 29, 1965; and by the not my purpose to impose on anyone my
term for which they were elected. Senate composed of eight Senators who recollection of what transpired, or of what
were elected in November, 1963 whose had been discussed about, or of what
As far as the House of Representatives term would expire on December 29, had been agreed upon, by the Members
is concerned, the situation as portrayed 1969, eight Senators who were elected of the Second National Assembly during
in this third case is the same situation as in November, 1961 whose term would the deliberations which brought about
that which was contemplated by the expire on December 29, 1967, and eight the 1940 amendments to our
framers of the original Constitution of Senators who were elected in Constitution. My perception and my
1935 when it was provided in the November, 1959 whose term had memory are as frail as those of any other
Constitution as adopted that the increase expired on December 29, 1965. human being, and I may have incurred
in salary should not take effect "until after Inasmuch as the increase would take myself in error. It just happened that the
the expiration of the full term of the effect at the expiration of the term of the facts and the circumstances that I have
Members of the National Assembly Senators who were elected in herein narrated, as I remember them,
elected subsequent to the approval of November, 1963 — which is on have engendered in my mind an opinion,
such increase." In the example we have December 29, 1969 — the Members of nay a conviction, which dovetails with the
given, the increase in salaries of the the present House of Representatives opinion of my illustrious colleague that
Members of the House of cannot receive this increased has penned the opinion for the majority
Representatives which was approved by compensation during their present term of the Court in this case.
the Members of the House in the third of office. It will be the Members of the
There is, however, a vital aspect of the period of time during which the
problem that, in my view, requires not prohibition or limitation operates, after
only projection but emphasis as well. which period the increase in
CASTRO J., concurring: This is the language of the pertinent compensation can take effect. Whose full
constitutional prohibition or limitation term must first expire before the increase
which by itself forcefully compels the can take effect? It is the full term "of the
Republic Act 4134, increasing the salary
very conclusion arrived at by the majority members of the Senate and of the
of all the members of Congress, was
of the Court. House of Representatives approving
approved on June 20, 1964. In the light
such increase." The immediate as well
of the constitutional prohibition or station
We cannot overemphasize the essential as lasting impact of these words is that
embodied in section 14 of article VI of
role of language. It is one of the what must first expire is the full term of
the Constitution, when does such
distinctive qualities of man, especially of the members of both houses of
increase in salary take effect? Shall
modern thinking man. Man does feel and Congress approving the increase. It
effectivity be this year 1966 for the
analyze his intellectual and material cannot be the full term of the members
members of the House of
experiences; but more than this he has of either house, nor yet the full term of
Representatives, considering that the full
the ability to articulate, and through the members of the Senate or that of the
term of the members thereof who
articulation he manages synthesis and members of the House of
participated in the approval of the salary
brings forth the creation and evolution of Representatives.
increase has expired? Even if the full
terms of all the members of the Senate, culture, literature, science and law. In the
as composed in 1964, have not expired? process, the unceasing effort is to say The key word is the particle "and". "And"
Or shall effectivity be only on December what is meant and to mean what is said. is a conjunction pertinently defined as
30, 1969, after the expiration of the full meaning "together with," "joined with"
term of the senators elected in 1963? . How, then, is the constitutional (Funk and Wagnalls New Standard
prohibition or limitation on congressional Dictionary of the English Language, p.
salary increases stated? "No increase in 105); "along or together with," "added to
I fully adhere to and support the position
said compensation shall take effect until or linked to," used to conjoin word with
taken by my esteemed brethren, Justices
after the expiration of the full term of all word, phrase with phrase, clause with
J.B.L. Reyes, Jose P. Bengzon and
the members of the Senate and of the clause (Webster's New International
Calixto Zaldivar. Their thorough going
House of Representatives approving Dictionary, p. 98). The word "and" does
treatment of the issue effectively exploits
such increase." This statement has a not mean "or"; it is a conjunction used to
logical, historical and empirical
literal message of striking clarity. The denote a joinder or union, "binding
considerations leading quite inevitably to
phrase "No increase in said together relating the one to the other"
the firm conclusion that the salary
compensation shall take effect" (See 3 Words and Phrases, 569-571.).
increase provided for by Congress in
1964 can take effect, for any and all establishes the character of the provision
members of Congress, only after the as a prohibition or limitation, as can be As understood from the common and
expiration of the full term of the senators seen from the unqualified words "no usual meaning of the conjunction "and,"
elected in 1963, that is to say, only after increase". The words "until after the the expiration of the full term of all the
December 29, 1969. expiration of the full term" impart the members of the Senate is inseparable
from the expiration of the full term of all framers of the provision were concerned
the members of the House of with the realities of the term of office of
Representatives. From the perspective the senators and that of the
of semantics, it is undeniably perceived representatives, more than with the
that those who framed the constitutional reality of the parity of compensation,
provision, when they utilized the word then they should have staggered the
"and," stated what they meant and meant effectivity of entitlement to the increased
what they stated. salary and allowed the first group of
senators elected after the approval of the
There is, to be sure, a specific rule of increase to enjoy such increase.
interpretation that would allow "or" to be
interchanged with "and," in which event a The prohibition or limitation may be
negation of the concept of joinder would stated elsewise: "The full terms of all the
ensue. But this is the exception rather members of the Senate and of the
than the general rule. The exception is House of Representatives approving
resorted to only when a literal such increase must first expire before an
interpretation would pervert the plain increase in compensation can take
intention of the writer or draftsman as effect." Would the literal meaning of the
gleaned from the overall context of the provision still be in doubt?
writing and/or from external factors. This
does not obtain in the provision under The framers of the constitutional
discussion. Indeed, a departure from the provision under discussion certainly were
general rule and a resort to the exception not wanting of competent legal stylists.
would pervert section 14 of article VI. With such more reason, then, must they
Note the parity of compensation of the be regarded as having achieved a unity
senators and the members of the House of intention, statement and meaning.
of Representatives. If the expiration of These experienced stylists could have so
the full term of the members of the easily phrased the provision differently to
Senate would be considered as conform to a different intention. For
separable from the expiration of the full example, it could have been: ". . . until
term of the members of the House of after the expiration of the full term of all
Representatives, despite the conjunction the members of the Senate or of the
"and," then the result would be to allow House of Representatives approving
members of the House of such increase, as the case may be." But
Representatives to enjoy the increase in this was not done, and we cannot
compensation ahead of the senators, deviate from what able stylists have
thereby producing a disparity of plainly stated in plain language.
compensation. Furthermore, if the