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009. AQUINO, JR.

v ENRILE
G.R. No. L-35546 September 17, 1974; Makalintal, C.J.:

In The Matter Of The Petition For Habeas Corpus Of Benigno S. Aquino, Jr., Ramon Mitra, Jr., Francisco Rodrigo, And
Napoleon Rama, v . Hon Juan Ponce Enrile, Secretary Of National Defense; Gen. Romeo Espino, Chief Of Staff, Armed
Forces Of The Philippines; And Gen. Fidel V. Ramos, Chief, Philippine Constabulary,

G.R. No. L-35538 September 17, 1974

In The Matter Of The Petition For Habeas Corpus Of Joaquin P. Roces, Teodoro M. Locsin, Sr., Rolando Fadul, Rosalina
Galang, Go Eng Guan, Maximo V. Soliven, Renato Constantino, And Luis R. Mauricio, V. The Secretary Of National
Defense; The Chief Of Staff, Armed Forces Of The Philippines; The Chief, Philippine Constabulary, Et Al., Respondents.

G.R. No. L-35539 September 17, 1974

In The Matter Of The Petition For Habeas Corpus Of Jose W. Diokno, Carmen I. Diokno, *1 v. Juan Ponce Enrile, The
Secretary Of National Defense; Romeo Espino, The Chief Of Staff, Armed Forces Of The Philippines.

G.R. No. L-35540 September 17, 1974

Maximo V. Soliven, Napoleon G. Rama, And Jose Mari Velez, v.


Hon. Juan Ponce Enrile, Secretary Of National Defense; Hon. Francisco Tatad, Press Secretary; And Gen. Fidel V. Ramos,
Chief, Philippine Constabulary,

G.R. No. L-35547 September 17, 1974 *2

Enrique Voltaire Garcia Ii, v. Brig. Gen. Fidel Ramos, Chief, Philippine Constabulary; Gen. Romeo Espino, Chief Of Staff,
Armed Forces Of The Philippines; And Hon. Juan Ponce Enrile, Secretary Of National Defense

G.R. No. L-35556 September 17, 1974

In The Matter Of The Petition For Habeas Corpus Of Veronica L. Yuyitung And Tan Chin Hian, v. Juan Ponce Enrile,
Secretary Of National Defense; Lieut. Gen. Romeo Espino, Chief Of Staff, Armed Forces Of The Philippines; And Brig.
Gen. Fidel V. Ramos, Chief Of The Philippine Constabulary

G.R. No. L-35567 September 17, 1974

In The Matter Of The Petition For Habeas Corpus Of Amando Doronila Juan L. Mercado, Hernando L. Abaya, Ernesto
Granada, Luis D. Beltran, Tan Chin Hian, Bren Guiao, Ruben Cusipag, Roberto Ordoez, Manuel Almario And Willie
Baun, v. Hon. Juan Ponce Enrile, Secretary Of National Defense; Lieut. Gen. Romeo Espino, Chief Of Staff, Armed
Forces Of The Philippines; And Brig. Gen. Fidel V. Ramos, Chief, Philippine Constabulary

G.R. No. L-35571 September 17, 1974. *3

In The Matter Of The Petition For Habeas Corpus Of Bren Z. Guiao, Teresita M. Guiao, v. Juan Ponce Enrile, The
Secretary Of National Defense; Lt. Gen. Romeo Espino, Chief Of Staff Of The Armed Forces Of The Philippines: And
Brig. Gen. Fidel V. Ramos, Chief Of The Philippine Constabulary

G.R. No. L-35573 September 17, 1974

Ernesto Rondon, v. Hon. Juan Ponce Enrile, Secretary Of National Defense; Gen. Fidel V. Ramos, Chief, Philippine
Constabulary; And Major Rodulfo Miana,
FACTS:

These cases (9) are all petitions for habeas corpus, the petitioners having been arrested and detained by the military by
virtue of the President's Proclamation No. 1081, dated September 21, 1972.

The petitioners were arrested and held pursuant to General Order No. 2 of the President (September 22, 1972), "for being
participants or for having given aid and comfort in the conspiracy to seize political and state power in the country and to
take over the Government by force ..."

General Order No. 2 was issued by the President in the exercise of the powers he assumed by virtue of Proclamation No.
1081 (September 21, 1972) placing the entire country under martial law. The portions of the proclamation immediately in
point read as follows:

xxx xxx xxx

NOW, THEREFORE, I, FERDINAND E. MARCOS, President of the Philippines by virtue of the powers
vested upon me by Article VII, Section 10, Paragraph (2) of the Constitution, do hereby place the entire
Philippines as defined in Article I, Section 1 of the Constitution under martial law and, in my capacity as
their Commander-in-Chief, do hereby command the Armed Forces of the Philippines, to maintain law and
order throughout the Philippines, prevent or suppress all forms of lawless violence as well as any act of
insurrection or rebellion and to enforce obedience to all the laws and decrees, orders and regulations
promulgated by me personally or upon my direction.

In addition, I do hereby order that all persons presently detained, as well as all others who may hereafter be
similarly detained for the crimes of insurrection or rebellion, and all other crimes and offenses committed
in furtherance or on the occasion thereof, or incident thereto, or in connection therewith, for crimes against
national security and the law of nations, crimes against public order, crimes involving usurpation of
authority, rank, title and improper use of names, uniforms and insignia, crimes committed by public
officers, and for such other crimes as will be enumerated in orders that I shall subsequently promulgate, as
well as crimes as a consequence of any violation of any decree, order or regulation promulgated by me
personally or promulgated upon my direction shall be kept under detention until otherwise ordered released
by me or by my duly designated representative.

The provision of the 1935 Constitution referred to in the proclamation reads: "the President shall be commander-in-chief of
all armed forces of the Philippines and, whenever it becomes necessary, he may call out such armed forces to prevent or
suppress lawless violence, invasion, insurrection, or rebellion. In case of invasion, insurrection, or rebellion, or imminent
danger thereof, when the public safety requires it, he may suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus, or place the
Philippines or any part thereof under martial law."

ISSUE: WON the existence of conditions claimed to justify the exercise of the power to declare martial law subject to
judicial inquiry? Is the question political or justiciable in character?

HELD:

YES. Arrayed on the side of justiciability are Justices Castro, Fernando, Teehankee and Muoz Palma. They hold that the
constitutional sufficiency of the proclamation may be inquired into by the Court, and would thus apply the principle laid
down in Lansang although that case refers to the power of the President to suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas
corpus. The recognition of justiciability accorded to the question in Lansang, it should be emphasized, is there expressly
distinguished from the power of judicial review in ordinary civil or criminal cases, and is limited to ascertaining "merely
whether he (the President) has gone beyond the constitutional limits of his jurisdiction, not to exercise the power vested in
him or to determine the wisdom of his act." The test is not whether the President's decision is correct but whether, in
suspending the writ, he did or did not act arbitrarily. Applying this test, the finding by the Justices just mentioned is that
there was no arbitrariness in the President's proclamation of martial law pursuant to the 1935 Constitution; and I concur
with them in that finding. The factual bases for the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus, particularly in
regard to the existence of a state of rebellion in the country, had not disappeared, indeed had been exacerbated, as events
shortly before said proclamation clearly demonstrated. On this Point the Court is practically unanimous; Justice Teehankee
merely refrained from discussing it.

In the first place I am convinced (as are the other Justices), without need of receiving evidence as in an ordinary adversary
court proceeding, that a state of rebellion existed in the country when Proclamation No. 1081 was issued. It was a matter of
contemporary history within the cognizance not only of the courts but of all observant people residing here at the time.
Many of the facts and events recited in detail in the different "Whereases" of the proclamation are of common knowledge.
The state of rebellion continues up to the present.

Secondly, my view, which coincides with that of other members of the Court as stated in their opinions, is that the question
of validity of Proclamation No. 1081 has been foreclosed by the transitory provision of the 1973 Constitution [Art. XVII,
Sec. 3(2)] that "all proclamations, orders, decrees, instructions, and acts promulgated, issued, or done by the incumbent
President shall be part of the law of the land and shall remain valid, legal, binding and effective even after ... the ratification
of this Constitution ..." To be sure, there is an attempt in these cases to resuscitate the issue of the effectivity of the new
Constitution. All that, however, is behind us now. The question has been laid to rest by our decision in Javellana vs.
Executive Secretary (L-36142, 50 SCRA 30, March 31, 1973), and of course by the existing political realities both in the
conduct of national affairs and in our relations with other countries.

On the effect of the transitory provision Justice Muoz Palma withholds her assent to any sweeping statement that the same
in effect validated, in the constitutional sense, all "such proclamations, decrees, instructions, and acts promulgated, issued,
or done by the incumbent President." All that she concedes is that the transitory provision merely gives them "the
imprimatur of a law but not of a constitutional mandate," and as such therefore "are subject to judicial review when proper
under the Constitution.

Finally, the political-or-justiciable question controversy indeed, any inquiry by this Court in the present cases into the
constitutional sufficiency of the factual bases for the proclamation of martial law has become moot and purposeless as a
consequence of the general referendum of July 27-28, 1973. The question propounded to the voters was: "Under the (1973)
Constitution, the President, if he so desires, can continue in office beyond 1973. Do you want President Marcos to continue
beyond 1973 and finish the reforms he initiated under Martial Law?" The overwhelming majority of those who cast their
ballots, including citizens between 15 and 18 years, voted affirmatively on the proposal. The question was thereby removed
from the area of presidential power under the Constitution and transferred to the seat of sovereignty itself. Whatever may
be the nature of the exercise of that power by the President in the beginning whether or not purely political and therefore
non-justiciable this Court is precluded from applying its judicial yardstick to the act of the sovereign.

IN VIEW OF ALL THE FOREGOING AND FOR THE REASONS STATED BY THE MEMBERS OF THE COURT IN
THEIR SEPARATE OPINIONS, JUDGMENT IS HEREBY RENDERED DISMISSING ALL THE PETITIONS,
EXCEPT THOSE WHICH HAVE BEEN PREVIOUSLY WITHDRAWN BY THE RESPECTIVE PETITIONERS WITH
THE APPROVAL OF THIS COURT, AS HEREINABOVE MENTIONED. NO COSTS.