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REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES

SUPREME COURT
MANILA

The Philippine Constitution Association
(PHILCONSA),
Petitioner,

SCA GR. No. _________
-v ersus - For: Certiorari and
Prohibition with prayer
for TRO/ Preliminary
Injunction

Senate of the Philippines represented
by Senate President Honorable Vicente
Sotto, House of Representatives
represented by Speaker Honorable
Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, Office of the
President, represented by Executive
Secretary Honorable Salvador
Medialdea and The Commission on
Audit, represented by its Chairman
Honorable Michael G. Aguinaldo,
Respondents.
x-----------------------------------------------------x

PETITION

Petitioners, Philippine Constitution Association
(PHILCONSA)represented by its President Ferdinand Martin
Romualdez by counsel and to this Honorable Court respectfully
av er:

Prologue
(With Exposition of Critical Issues Spawned)

Petitioner, PHILCONSA, a non-stock, non-profit association
organized 57 years ago with former President Sergio Osmeña,
Sr. as first President, to defend, protect, and preserv e the
Constitution, supports any crusade to formulate and establish
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autonomy, peace, order, progress and prosperity in Muslim
Mindanao to address the lingering Mindanao problems.
Howev er, any measure or law to achiev e the nationalistic and
noble goals must be designed and structured “Within the
framework of the Constitution and the national sov ereignty as
well as the territorial integrity of the Republic of the Philippines”.
(Video: Sec. 15, Article X of the Constitution).

PHILCONSA is awed and shocked Respondents legislativ e
and executiv e departments passed and approv ed R.A. 11054,
sans jurisdiction or authority under the Constitution, creating a
new and distinct “Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim
Mindanao (BARMM), enacting its organic law, and abolishing
the ARMM a creation of the 1987 Constitution. R.A. No. 11054 is
littered with a litany of odd, unorthodox, questionable and illicit
prov isions, illustrating the rhetorical language of Sir Winston
Churchill “A riddle wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma”, or
the equally cryptic words of Fred Dallmayr 1” of the “unthought
within our thought, the unreason of our reason, the unconscious
of our conscious”. R.A. 11054 is a toxic and fatally inv alid
legislation.

The ARMM was created by the 1987 Constitution (Sec.15,
Art. X). The Constitution recognizes only the Autonomous
Region in Muslim Mindanao. Section 18 Article X of the 1987
Constitution mandates the 8 th Congress to enact the Organic
Act of ARMM (Sections 18 and 19, Art. X). These irrefragable
facts hav e spawned critical constitutional issues.

(a) What body is authorized to create a new and
distinct autonomous regions other than the ARMM,
the Constitution or Congress?;
(b) What is the process to create a new and distinct
territorial and political subdiv ision?;
(c) Is Congress prohibited or authorized to create
another autonomous regions other than the
Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao?;
(d) May Congress thru RA 11054 hav e the jurisdiction, or
authority to create a new and distinct Bangsamoro
Autonomous Regions in Muslim Mindanao
(BARMM)?;
1 An American contemporary philosopher and political theorist

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(e) Does the 1987 Constitution authorize the present or
17th Congress to create the BARMM and to enact its
Organic Law?;
(f) Does Congress hav e the jurisdiction or authority to
abolish ARMM a creation of the Constitution?;
(g) May a legislation, R.A. 11054, amend the prov isions
of the Constitution?

In keeping with its patriotic mission to defend, preserv e
and protect the Constitution, Petitioner is constrained to file this
Petition to this Honorable Court, to declare null and v oid R.A.
11054 creating a new and distinct autonomous region
(BARMM) in gross v iolation of the Constitution with grav e abuse
of discretion amounting to lack of and/or in excess of
jurisdiction.

NATURE OF THE PETITION

This is an urgent special civ il action for Certiorari, and
Prohibition with prayer for TRO/Preliminary Injunction, under Rule
65 of the Rev ised Rules of Court seeking to declare
unconstitutional, and v oid R.A. 10054 passed and approv ed by
Respondents Congress of the Philippines and the Executiv e
department in v iolation of the Constitution with grav e abuse of
discretion, tantamount to lack of and/or in excess of authority
and jurisdiction.

A certified true copy of R.A. 11054 is hereto attached as
Annex “A” and made an integral part hereof.

There is no appeal, nor any other plain, speedy and
adequate of remedy in the ordinary course of law except thru
this Petition.

I.
THE PARTIES

1.1 Petitioner PHILCONSA, is a non-stock, non-profit
association under existing laws, organized purposely to defend,
protect and preserv e the Constitution, with offices at the 2nd
Floor, Philstrust Bldg., Remedios cor. M.H. del Pilar Sts., Malate,
Manila. This Honorable Court has recognized Philconsa’s legal

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standing (locus standi) to file and/or handle cases on
constitutional issues2 impressed with public interest and/or of
transcendental importance. It may be serv ed with notices and
processes of this Honorable Court through the office of the
undersigned counsel.

1.2 Respondents Senate of the Philippines, represented
by its Senate President Honorable Vicente Sotto III; and House
of Representativ es, represented by its Speaker Honorable
Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, the two Houses of Congress of the
Philippines assigned by the Constitution to legislate laws hav e
offices at Senate of the Philippines at GSIS Bldg., Financial
Center, Diokno Blv d., Pasay City 1300 Metro Manila; and at
Ramon Mitra Bldg., Batasan Road, Quezon City, respectiv ely
where notices and processes of this Honorable Court may be
serv ed.

1.3 Respondent Office of the President or the Executiv e
Department represented by Honorable Executiv e Secretary
Salv ador Medialdea is assigned by the Constitution to
execute/implement laws inclusiv e of R.A. 11054 with the duty to
cause the releases, use or disbursements of funds appropriated
by Congress for the implementation of law with offices at
Malacañang Palace, Jose P. Laurel St., San Miguel, Manila and
Gen. Solano St., San Miguel, Manila.

1.4 Respondent Commission on Audit tasked by the
Constitution the power, authority and duty to examine and
audit the expenditures or use of funds of the Gov ernment
including the funds to implement R.A. 11054 represented by its
Chairman Honorable Michael G. Aguinaldo with offices at
Commonwealth Ave., Quezon City 1121 Metro Manila, where it
may be serv ed with notices and processes of this Honorable
Court.

II.

2 Philconsa vs. Gimenez, 15 SCRA 479; Philconsa vs. Mathay, 18 SCRA 300; Philconsa vs.
Enriquez, 235 SCRA 506; Lambino vs. Comelec, 505 SCRA 160 wherein Philconsa is one of
the petitioners and Philconsa vs. JBC, G.R. No. 191059.

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Factual Settings

2.1 The issues on the autonomy, peace, order, progress
and prosperity of Muslim Mindanao hav e been lingering
problems since October 1898 under the U.S. regime up to the
present. The Mindanao problems hav e been the subject of
numerous executiv e and legislativ e measures under almost
ev ery administration. The Mindanao problems were
aggressiv ely addressed in The 1976 Tripoli Agreement, P.D. No.
1092 calling Plebiscite in Regions IX and XII, Proclamation No.
1628 of March 25, 1977, declaring Autonomy in Southern
Philippines and P.D. No. 1618, Implementing the Organization of
Regions IX and XII. The dominant leaders of MNLF then were
Misuari and Hashim Salamat, Chairman and Vice-Chairman
respectiv ely. The relations of the two turned acerbic that led
Salamat formed the MILF together with Murad and Igbal
President Cory Aquino caused The Jeddah Agreement with
the MNLF led Misuari to continue discussion to giv e autonomy
to Muslim Mindanao and Jolo. The MNLF, then dominant Muslim
group and the MILF opposed the 1987 Constitution as contrary
to the Tripoli Agreement. President Cory promised to assist the
driv e for autonomy in Mindanao and Sulu. This prompted
Misuari to return in September 1986. Defying protocol, President
Cory, counsel and military adv isers went to Jolo and met
Misuari. MILF then led by Hashim Salamat felt excluded and
denounced the Jeddah Agreement and launched a 5-day
offensiv e attack against gov ernment troops. President Cory
met Salamat in Cotabato to appease MILF. President Ramos
continued the peace and appeasement process. This led to
the Final Peace Agreement or the Jakarta Agreement
prov iding for the mechanism to implement The Tripoli
Agreement. Misuari ran unopposed as the 4th Gov ernor ARMM.
MILF rejected The 1996 Final Peace Agreement as inadequate
and reiterated for a Bangsamoro Islamic State (BIS). When the
Gov ernment was adamant, MILF began recruiting or
establishing camps becoming the dominant Muslim group,
eclipsing the MNLF. After President Ramos term, the peace and
appeasement process was disturbed. President Estrada
declared an all-out war against the Muslim adv enturism. The
military captured Camp Abubakar and raised the Philippine
Flag.

2.2 The MILF was first led by the dynamic and hypnotic
leader Hashim Salamat. He was succeeded by Messrs. Murad
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and Iqbal. They were able to forge the Memorandum
Agreement on Ancestral Domain (MOA-AD) under President
Arroyo. This triggered the rebellion by MNLF in Zamboanga led
by Misuari and his escape to Malaysia and later repatriation to
Philippine to face charges. The Gov ernment of the Republic of
the Philippines (GRP) was represented by Rodolfo C. Garcia
and Muslim Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) represented by
Mohagher Iqbal. The MOA-AD created the Bangsamoro
Juridical Entity (BJE) with associativ e relations with the central
gov ernment. The Supreme Court (SC) declared the MOA-AD
unconstitutional and the “BJE” as a state in all but name.

2.3 Notwithstanding the failed and unconstitutional
MOA-AD, President Benigno Aquino III continued with the
peace/appeasement process. The Gov ernment panel
represented by Dean Marv ic M.V.F. Leonen negotiated and
executed with the MILF represented by Mohagher Iqbal the
‘Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro’ (FAB on October
15, 2012), and the ‘Comprehensive Agreement of Bangsamoro’
(CAB) on March 27, 2014 signed by Miriam Coronel Ferrer and
others in the presence of President Benigno Aquino III and the
Prime Minister of Malaysia Najib Razak consolidating numerous
agreements mostly signed in Malaysia. The FAB and CAB,
resurrected and even fortified the prov isions of MOA-AD
already declared unconstitutional and illegal by the Supreme
Court.

2.4 The FAB and CAB Agreements prov ided for the
legislation of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) that will establish
the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao
(BARMM) and abolish the ARMM. The BARMM prov ides for the
asymmetric relationship with the central gov ernment, and
assigns reserv ed, exclusiv e and concurrent powers to the
Bangsamoro and the central gov ernment and a parliamentary
Bangsamoro gov ernment under the aegis of a Federal
gov ernment. President Aquino III enacted Executiv e Order No.
120 (Series 2012) and created the Bangsamoro Transition
Commission (BTC) tasked to draft proposed Bangsamoro Basic
Law (BBL) to recommend to Congress. E.O. 120 - created public
offices contrary to the doctrine of separation of powers. The
power to create public office is v ested in Congress except in
reorganization of offices.3 After negotiations and refinements
with the MILF and the Office of the President, BTC submitted the
3
Biraogo vs. Truth Commission, 637, SCRA 78, 2010)

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draft, proposed BBL to Congress. The proposed draft by BTC
was prepared by v oid offices not created by Congress.

2.5 It must be noted that the peace and appeasement
processes are in reality appeasements, compromises and
concessions to respond, address, solv e or minimize the
Mindanao problems/issues spawned. The v arious and
numerous peace/appeasement processes, were broken or
disrupted by dimensional threats and/or actual military attacks
either by MNLF and/or MILF against the military (AFP).

2.6 Petitioners pray this Honorable Court to take judicial
notice of the factual ev ents spread in the episode of
Gov ernment’s numerous negotiations, laws and agreements to
address the aspirations of autonomy in Muslim Mindanao and
the v aried Mindanao problems.

III.
ARGUMENTS

3.1 “Explicit and unambiguous prov isions of the
Constitution prescribe and define the respectiv e functions of
the Congress and the President in the legislativ e process”
Lawmaking is power shared by Congress and the President.

We begin, of course, with the presumption that the
challenged statute is v alid. Its wisdom is not the concern of the
courts. Its efficiency, conv enience and usefulness in addressing
and facilitating the autonomy and Mindanao problems will not
sav e it if it is contrary to the Constitution. The Constitution is
supreme and paramount. Any exercise of power of the
legislativ e and executiv e departments or any of their
respectiv e functionaries beyond what is circumscribed by the
Constitution and law is unconstitutional, and a nullity. The
passage and approv al of R.A. 11054 by the legislativ e and
executiv e departments creating a new and distinct territorial
and political subdiv ision, Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in
Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), enacting its organic law and
abolishing the ARMM, constitute not only a blatant v iolation of
the Constitution but also grav e abuse of discretion tantamount
of lack of and/or in excess of jurisdiction. Hence R.A. 11054 is a
toxic and v icious legislation. BARMM is not a creation and not

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recognized by the Constitution. BARMM is at best an interloper
or stranger to the Constitution.

3.2 Petitioner shall focus and address the infirmities in
the formulation, passage and approv al of R.A. 11054 by the
Congress and by the Office of the President, and meagerly
tasking or imputing the equally flawed and amorphous,
dubious and illicit prov isions, as exhibited in Annex “A”. There
are more questions than answers to the copious legislation. Said
law suffers from the complexity of the relations to be regulated,
the intricacy of whirligig politics and incredible politicians and
the inadequacy of words to conv ey complex ideas with
precision and accuracy. Many prov isions require amendments
of the existing legal framework. The matters that matter with
the BARMM clash with the Constitution, existing law and
jurisprudence.

The Autonomous Region in Muslim
Mindanao (ARMM) and the Cordilleras
were created by the Constitution. They
are the only autonomous regions
recognized by the Constitution.

3.3. Article X of the Constitution prov ides:

“Section15. There shall be created autonomous
regions in Muslim Mindanao and in the Cordilleras
consisting of provinces, cities, municipalities, and
geographical areas sharing common and distinctive
historical and cultural heritage, economic and social
structures, and other relevant characteristics within
the framework of this Constitution and the national
sovereignty as well as territorial integrity of the
Republic of the Philippines.”

It is indubitable the Autonomous Regions in Muslim
Mindanao (ARMM)and the Cordilleras were created by the
Constitution. They are the only autonomous regions recognized
by the Constitution. The BARMM is created by Congress in
v iolation of the Constitution.

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The deliberations of the ‘Con-Com’ that drafted the 1987
Constitution are replete with or ov erflowing with the undisputed
intentions of the framers on the prov isions of Art. X of the
Constitution on the Autonomous Regions in Muslim Mindanao
(ARMM) and the Cordilleras. Lamentably, howev er, the syntax
of the remarks of commissioners were shrouded with the clouds.
This prompted clarifications elicited by the two recognized
intellectual giants in the “CON-COM”, Fr. Joaquin Bernas and
Minister Blas F. Ople that fortified the intentions of the CON-
COM. We quote the pertinent deliberations to buttress our
submissions.

The Records of “Con-Com”

The Chairman of the Committee on Local Gov ernment
and Autonomous Regions said/reported:

“Mr. Nolledo xxx The Members of the
Commission decided that only two autonomous
regions shall be recognized; namely, Muslim
Mindanao and the Cordilleras. So the members of
the Committee were asked to make the necessary
rev isions in our Committee Report Nos. 21 and 25
which are now consolidated in Resolution No. 470. I
would like to explain the rev ised report of the
Committee.

We propose to include in the 1987 Constitution
an Article on Local Gov ernments consisting of two
parts; namely, general prov isions, and prov isions on
autonomous regions” xxxxxx. 4

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Madam President, the Members of the
Constitutional Commission unanimously decided to
limit the creation of autonomous regions to Muslim
Mindanao and the Cordilleras. So, such decision
closed the door to the creation of other autonomous
regions. Pursuant to the observation of Commissioner
Rodrigo, if there should be other regions seeking

4
Records of the CON-COM, Saturday, August 16, 1986, pp. 370-371.

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autonomy, then they must seek such autonomy
through a constitutional amendment.5 (underlining
supplied)

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

”THE PRESIDENT. The Floor Leader is recognized.
MR. RAMA. The Committee is now ready to accept
amendments.
May I ask that Commissioner Jamir be
recognized.

THE PRESIDENT. Commissioner Jamir is recognized.

MR. JAMIR. Thank you, Madam President.

My amendment is with respect to the second
sentence of Section 1. I mov e that it be deleted for
being superfluous because, at any rate, the
autonomous regions are already named and
prov ided for in the portion under the heading
“Autonomous Regions.” [ The second sentence of
Sec.1 sought to be deleted] 6

In the second place, I believ e that the wording
of the first sentence is quite ambiguous in the sense
that is might be interpreted to authorize the creation
of additional autonomous regions patterned after
the Cordilleras and Muslim Mindanao.

I heard the honorable Chairman state that the
words “hereinafter prov ided” in the sentence I am
asking to be deleted refers to these two regions. So,
it is obv ious that this sentence is already superfluous.

May I know the response of the Committee?

MR. NOLLEDO. With due respect to the observ ations
of the Gentleman, the purpose of stating, “There
shall be created autonomous regions as hereinafter
prov ided” is to complete the image of the local
gov ernment structure of the entire country. We really
5
Records of the CON-COM, Saturday, August 16, 1986, page 371.
6 nd
2 sentence reads: “There shall be autonomous regions in Muslim Mindanao and the Cordilleras as
hereinafter provided”

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are manifesting that it is the sense of the Committee
that there are only two autonomous regions to be
recognized: namely, Muslim Mindanao and the
Cordilleras.

That is why we did not put that in the first
sentence because there are certain conditions to
be completed with in the creation of autonomous
regions.

So, the Committee regrets that it cannot
accept the amendment because the entire image
of the entire structured system of local gov ernments
will no longer be reflected.

MR. JAMIR. If that is so, we can just add the phrase
AUTONOMOUS REGIONS after the word “barrios” as
they appear in the original v ersion, without putting it
in a separate sentence.

MR. NOLLEDO. If the Gentleman does not mind, the
reason we did not include in the first sentence is that
autonomous regions are to be created by Congress
[Constitution], subject to certain conditions. Suppose
those conditions are not complied with, then we do
not consider the autonomous regions as political
subdiv isions of the Republic of the Philippines.

The first sentence connoted, more or less, the
regularly constituted political units. We can submit
the amendment of the Gentleman to the body for
v oting.

MR. JAMIR. All right.

MR. NOLLEDO. Thank you.

Madam President, the question is whether to
delete the second sentence of Section 1.7

During the deliberations, there were confused or cloudy
remarks on record such as: The autonomous regions of Muslim
Mindanao and the Cordilleras are created by Congress;

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Records of the CON-COM, Saturday, August 16, 1986, pp. 372-373.

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Congress can create other autonomous regions; and the
process for other regions to observ e to become autonomous
regions. These issues triggered Father Bernas before v oting to
ask clarificatory questions to elicit the real intent, muddled or
obscured by the chaotic or jumbled remarks. Witness-

“FR. BERNAS. Madam President.

THE PRESIDENT. Commissioner Bernas is recognized.

FATHER BERNAS: “Before we vote, may I ask one
clarificatory question?”

THE PRESIDENT: “Commissioner Bernas may
proceed.”

FR. BERNAS: “Is it then the sense of the committee
that besides recognizing the Cordilleras and Muslim
Mindanao as autonomous regions, Congress is
prohibited from creating other autonomous regions?
Congress is prohibited from creating other
autonomous regions.”

MR. NOLLEDO: “Yes, Madam President. I said that we
are adopting the Rodrigo observation during the
caucus that if there should be other regions aside
from Muslim Mindanao and the Cordilleras, which
would like to create themselves into autonomous
regions, they should seek constitutional
amendment.”

FR. BERNAS: They should seek a constitutional
amendment?

MR. NOLLEDO:, Yes, Madam President.

THE PRESIDENT: The body is now ready to v ote on the
amendment.

MR. NOLLEDO: The question, Madam President, is
whether or not to delete the second sentence of
Section 1.

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THE PRESIDENT: And this reads: “There shall be
autonomous regions as hereinafter prov ided.” That is
the second sentence, is that not correct?

MR. NOLLEDO: Yes, Madam President.

VOTING

THE PRESIDENT. As many as are in fav or of the
proposed amendment of Commissioner Jamir,
please raise their hand. (Few members raised their
hand.)

As many as are against, please raise their hand.
(Sev eral members raised their hand.)

The results show 8 v otes in fav or and15 against;
the amendment is lost.8

During the deliberations, another jumbled remarks
were recorded - Witness

“MR. PADILLA. Madam President, the second
sentence reads “There shall be autonomous regions
as herein prov ided.” I suggest that it be rewarded as
follows: THE CONGRESS SHALL AUTHORIZE TWO
AUTONOMOUS REGIONS AS HEREINAFTER PROVIDED,”
instead of saying, “there are or there shall be
autonomous regions.

THE PRESIDENT. Is the amendment accepted by the
Committee?

MR. NOLLEDO. We regret, xxxx. We made a
statement before that there may be two or more
autonomous regions in Muslim Mindanao as
Congress may prov ide. So while we mention Muslim
Mindanao as only one autonomous region, the
meaning is that Congress may decide to create two
or more autonomous regions out of Mindanao.

MR. PADILLA. To make clear that autonomous
regions are limited to Muslim Mindanao and the

8
Records of the CON-COM, Saturday, August 16, 1986, page 373.

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Cordilleras and not any other autonomous regions, I
suggest that the prov ision will read: THE CONGRESS
MAY AUTHORIZE AUTONOMOUS REGIONS IN MUSLIM
MINDANAO AND CORDILLERA AS HEREINAFTER
PROVIDED.9

The statements by Mr. Padilla “the Congress shall
authorize two autonomous regions” must hav e shocked
Ople that he interv ened. Witness-

“MR. OPLE. Madam President.

THE PRESIDENT. Commissioner Ople is recognized.

MR. OPLE. May I put a question to the Committee
concerning the Padilla amendment.

THE PRESIDENT. The Gentleman may proceed.
MR. OPLE. Thank you.

Is it the intent of the Committee that the
creation of the two autonomous regions is actually
delegated to Congress? Or is it to be done under the
heading of “LOCAL GOVERNMENTS AND
AUTONOMOUS REGIONS” right in the Constitution,
although mandating Congress to pass the enabling
laws and the organic acts to implement this action of
the Constitution?

MR. NOLLEDO. It is the understanding of the
Committee that the Members of the Commission in
caucus intended to mandate Congress to create the
autonomous regions in Muslim Mindanao and the
Cordilleras. So, the Constitution itself provides that
there shall be autonomous regions in Muslim
Mindanao and the Cordilleras and that Congress
shall pass the necessary organic act.

MR. OPLE. Yes, but is the act or the creation by the
Constitution denied by the Committee?

MR. NOLLEDO. It is, in effect, a constitutional creation
because we are authorizing Congress to enact the

9
Records of the CON-COM. Saturday, August 16, 1986, page 374.

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organic acts for Muslim Mindanao and the
Cordilleras.
MR. OPLE. That intent seems to be clear now.

Thank you, Madam President.10

The clarification elicited by Ople made it clear and
pronounced that autonomous regions in Muslim Mindanao and
Cordilleras are the creations of the 1987 Constitution and
Congress participation is merely “to pass the enabling laws and
the organic acts to implement this creation of the Constitution.

In v iew of the cloudy or v ague statements of Nolledo and
Padilla, Fr. Bernas before v oting the prov isions of the Local
Gov ernment and Autonomous Regions again asked
clarificatory questions. Witness
“FR. BERNAS. Mr. Presiding Officer, just two
clarificatory questions before we v ote.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER. (Mr. Rodrigo) Commissioner
Bernas is recognized.

FR. BERNAS. I hav e gone ov er the minutes, the
Journal, and I hav e asked myself a question: Does
what we hav e approv ed say that we are allowing
only to autonomous regions? I heard two conflicting
answers. I found conflicting answers in the Journal.
Could we settle that before we v ote? Are we
allowing only two, or are we allowing more than two
autonomous regions?

MR. NOLLEDO. The committee has made a
categorical statement that the committee adheres
to the decision of the Constitutional Commission that
only two autonomous regions shall be recognized:
namely, Muslim Mindanao and the Cordilleras. If
there should be any other aggrupation that would
seek autonomy in the same manner that Muslim
Mindanao and the Cordilleras are granted
autonomy, that aggrupation should seek a
constitutional amendment.”11

10
Records of the CON-COM, Saturday, August 16, 1986, pp. 374-375.
11
Records of the CON-COM, Saturday, August 21, 1986, page 576.

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Fr. Bernas in his Book of Commentaries of the
Constitution wrote – “the creation of other autonomous
regions, whether by div iding the cordilleras or the Muslim
Mindanao into two or creating others outside these two
regions, can be accomplished only by constitutional
amendment.” (the 1987 Constitution of the Phils., a
commentary, Bernas, p. 1075) [2003 ed.]

What the Constitution creates and
recognizes as autonomous regions-
Congress cannot defy or supplant

The 1987 Constitution created the Autonomous Regions in
Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) and the Cordilleras (Sect.1, Art. X).
The ARMM is the only autonomous region created by the
Constitution as part of the territorial and political subdiv isions of
the Republic. The ARMM autonomous region owe its origin and
deriv e its powers and rights from the Constitution. It breathes
into ARMM the breathe of Life without which it can not exist.

R.A. 11054 passed and approv ed by Respondents
legislativ e and executiv e departments v iolated and/or
amended Sec. 1, Art. X of the Constitution ordaining: the
territorial and political subdiv isions of the Republic of the
Philippines are the prov inces, cities, municipalities, barangays
and the Autonomous Regions in Muslim Mindanao and the
Cordilleras. R.A. No. 11054 added new and distinct territorial
and political subdiv ision, sans amending the Constitution.
Respondent’s legislativ e and executiv e departments v iolated
and/or amended Sec. 1, Art. X of the Constitution amended
v ia legislation R.A. 11054, without jurisdiction or authority, with
grav e abuse of discretion tantamount to lack of and/or in
excess of jurisdictions.

The legislativ e and the executiv e departments, creations
of the Constitution, must observ e, and stand beside the
Constitution and not act abov e the Constitution to defy and
supplant. The legislativ e and executiv e departments must do
what they must, not what they should not. Not ev erything in life
that counts, can be counted. Value not only the gains/progress
we make, but how we make the gains/progress.

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In light of the language of Art. X of the Constitution and
the clarifications Fr. Bernas and Blas Ople elicited, it is submitted
that: (a) to create a new and distinct autonomous region,
other than the ARMM, only the Constitution may do so, v ia a
Constitutional amendment; (b) Congress is prohibited or has no
authority or jurisdiction to create other autonomous regions; (c)
Congress is not authorized to create autonomous regions; (d)
Congress cannot defy or supplant the Constitution; (e)
Congress cannot amend the prov isions of the Constitution.

In the context of the foregoing discussion of the quoted
prov isions of Article X of the Constitution and the
Records/Deliberations of the Constitutional Commission (CON-
COM), it is respectfully prayed that R.A. 11054 be declared by
this Honorable Court as unconstitutional, null and v oid.

III
AVERMENTS IN SUPPORT OF THE APPLICATION
FOR TEMPORARY RESTRAINING ORDER AND/OR
WRIT OF PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION

4.1 The petitioners replead and incorporate herein by
reference all the preceding allegations, submissions and
arguments;

4.2 The foregoing allegations/av erments demonstrate
that the petitioner is clearly entitled to the relief demanded, the
whole or part of which consists in restraining, prohibiting and
enjoining respondents, their agents and instrumentalities, from
further proceeding with the programs, projects and activ ities
grounded or emanated from the unconstitutional and v oid R.A.
11054 and from funding/releasing funds;

4.3 Until and unless a TRO or preliminary injunction is
issued, unlawful disbursements or uses of public funds pursuant
to the illegal/unconstitutional R.A. 11054 will escalate into
continuing v iolations, if not a flaunting disregard or defiance, of
the Constitution, and the laws further prejudicing public interest
and welfare;

4.4 Unless a TRO or preliminary injunction is issued,
petitioner and the Filipino people will continue to suffer from a
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grav e and irreparable damage or injury inclusiv e of the
adv erse aftermaths to the nation, warned by the MILF to
happen, should the gov ernment fail to succumb to the
politically irresistible aspirations of the MILF;

4.5 Respondents are doing and procuring to be done
acts in v iolation of the Constitution grav ely prejudicial to the
Filipino people tending to render any judgment ineffectual;

4.6 Since the issues inv olv ed are clearly
constitutional/legal issues, it is prayed that the TRO and/or
preliminary injunction be issued without need of filing a bond.

EPILOGUE

“And when the judiciary mediates to allocate
constitutional boundaries, it does not assert any superiority ov er
the other departments. It does not in reality nullify or inv alidate
an act of legislature, but only asserts the solemn and sacred
delegation assigned to it by the Constitution to determine
conflicting claims of authority under the Constitution and to
establish for the parties in an actual controv ersy the rights
which that instrument secures and guarantees to them. This is in
truth all that is inv olv ed in what is termed “judicial supremacy”
which properly is the power of judicial rev iew under the
Constitution.”12

PHILCONSA in its patriotic duty to assist achiev e the goals
of the MILF mov ement, to maintain peace, progress and
prosperity and autonomy to certain areas, humbly suggests the
enactment of law: (a) to change the name ARMM to
Bangsamoro autonomous region or BARMM; (b) to include
additional territories MILF desires accordance with the law; (c)
include powers consonant with the Constitution and laws; (d)
such other prov isions compatible with the Constitution and
existing law.

PRAYER

12
Angara vs. Electoral Commission, GR No. 45081, July 15, 1936.

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WHEREFORE, it is respectfully prayed unto this Honorable
Court, in the exercise of its legal and equity jurisdiction that a
judgment be rendered as follows-

a. Upon filing of this Petition, a temporary restraining order
be issued restraining/enjoining the respondents, their
agents and instrumentalities and/or ordering them to
cease and desist from implementing R.A. 11054 and for
receiv ing and disbursing any funds arising from,
connected with or related to the unconstitutional and
unlawful law;

b. After hearing or proper proceedings, a writ of preliminary
injunction be issued;

(1) Enjoining the implementation of the unconstitutional
and v oid R.A. 11054 and E.O, No. 120, as amended
creating public offices only Congress as the mandate to
create;

(2) Prohibiting/enjoining the recipients/beneficiaries from
using funds receiv ed pursuant to said enactment and
return the balance of unspent funds to the National
Treasurer;
(3) And directing the respondents, their agents and
instrumentalities from further proceeding with any
programs, projects or activ ities grounded or emanating
from R.A. 11054;

(4) The preliminary injunction be made permanent.

c. Declaring R.A. 11054 as unconstitutional and v oid.

Other reliefs as may be just and equitable in the premises
are also prayed for.

August ___, 2018, Makati City for Manila

MM LAZARO & ASSOCIATES

By:

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MANUEL M. LAZARO

MICHELLE B. LAZARO

BALDOMERO S.P. GATBONTON, JR.
Copy furnished:

OFFICE OF THE SOLICITOR GENERAL
Amorsolo St., Legaspi Village, Makati City

OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT
Malacañang Palace
Jose P. Laurel St., San Miguel, Manila

SENATE OF THE PHILIPPINES
GSIS Bldg., Financial Center,
Diokno Blv d., Pasay City 1300
House of Representatives
Ramon Mitra Bldg., Batasan Road,
Quezon City

COMMISSION ON AUDIT
Commonwealth Ave., Quezon City 1121
REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES)
MAKATI CITY ) S.S

VERIFICATION AND
CERTIFICATION OF NON-FORUM SHOPPING

I, _________________________________, ___________ of
PHILCONSA, of legal age, Filipino, and resident of _____, after
hav ing been duly sworn to in accordance with law, do hereby
depose and state that-

1. I am the ____________ of Philippine Constitution
Association (PHILCONSA) and is the duly authorized
representativ e of PHILCONSA;
2. I hav e caused the preparation and filing of the instant
Petition for Certiorari and Prohibition;

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3. I hav e read the foregoing Petition and affirmed that the
allegations therein are true and correct of my own
personal knowledge and based on authentic documents
and records;
4. I further attest that I hav e not commenced any
action/claim, or proceeding inv olv ing the same or similar
issues in the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeals or any
other tribunal or quasi-judicial agency; and that to the
best of my knowledge no other action, claim, or
proceeding is pending in the Supreme Court of Court of
Appeals or in any div ision thereof or any tribunal or
agency;
5. If I should thereafter learn of such similar action or
proceeding, I undertake to inform this Honorable Court
within fiv e (5) days from knowledge thereof.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I hav e hereunto affixed my signature this
___th day of ______ at Makati City, Philippines.

___________________________________
Affiant

SUBSCRIBED AND SWORN to before me this __th day of ____2018
in Makati City affiants exhibiting to me his CTC/___________,
issued on ____ at __________.

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