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PHILIPPINE PRESS INSTITUTE, INC., for and in behalf of 139 members, represented by its President, Amado P.

Macasaet and its Executive Director Ermin F. Garcia, Jr., petitioner vs. COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS, respondent G.R. No. L-119694 May 22, 1995 Facts: Respondent Comelec promulgated Resolution No. 2772 directing newspapers to provide free Comelec space of not less than one-half page for the common use of political parties and candidates. The Comelec space shall be allocated by the Commission, free of charge, among all candidates to enable them to make known their qualifications, their stand on public Issue and their platforms of government. The Comelec space shall also be used by the Commission for dissemination of vital election information. Petitioner Philippine Press Institute, Inc. (PPI), a non-profit organization of newspaper and magazine publishers, asks the Supreme Court to declare Comelec Resolution No. 2772 unconstitutional and void on the ground that it violates the prohibition imposed by the Constitution upon the government against the taking of private property for public use without just compensation. On behalf of the respondent Comelec, the Solicitor General claimed that the Resolution is a permissible exercise of the power of supervision (police power) of the Comelec over the information operations of print media enterprises during the election period to safeguard and ensure a fair, impartial and credible election. Issue: Whether or not Comelec Resolution No. 2772 is unconstitutional. Held: The Supreme Court declared the Resolution as unconstitutional. It held that to compel print media companies to donate Comelec space amounts to taking of private personal property without payment of the just compensation required in expropriation cases. Moreover, the element of necessity for the taking has not been established by respondent Comelec, considering that the newspapers were not unwilling to sell advertising space. The taking of private property for public use is authorized by the constitution, but not without payment of just compensation. Also Resolution No. 2772 does not constitute a valid exercise of the police power of the state. In the case at bench, there is no showing of existence of a national emergency to take private property of newspaper or magazine publishers.