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Meanwhile, the President issued the

challenged Executive Order No. 132 which mandated


EN BANC the streamlining of the Bureau of Internal Revenue. The
Excise Tax Service or the Specific Tax Service, of
[G.R. No. 112745. October 16, 1997.] which petitioner was the Assistant Commissioner, was
one of those offices that was abolished by the said
AQUILINO T. LARIN, petitioner, vs. THE executive order. The President found petitioner guilty of
EXECUTIVE SECRETARY, SECRETARY OF grave misconduct and imposed upon him the penalty of
FINANCE, COMMISSIONER OF THE dismissal with forfeiture of all benefits and
BUREAU OF INTERNAL REVENUE AND disqualification for reappointment in the government
THE COMMITTEE CREATED TO service. In this petition, petitioner challenges the
INVESTIGATE THE ADMINISTRATIVE authority of the President to dismiss him from office
COMPLAINT AGAINST AQUILINO arguing that insofar as presidential appointees who are
T. LARIN, COMPOSED OF FRUMENCIO A. Career Executive Service Officers are concerned, the
LAGUSTAN, JOSE B. ALEJANDRINO AND President exercises only the power of control and not
JAIME M. MAZA, respondents. the power to remove.cdasia

Cruz, Cruz & Navarro III for petitioner. The Supreme Court granted the petition and reinstated
petitioner with full backwages. The Court held that
The Solicitor General for respondents. where the very basis of the administrative case against
petitioner is his conviction in the criminal action which
was later on set aside by the Court upon a categorical
SYNOPSIS and clear finding that the acts for which he was
administratively held liable are not unlawful and
Petitioner was convicted by the Sandiganbayan of the irregular, the acquittal of the petitioner in the criminal
crimes of violation of Section 268 (4) of the National case necessarily entails the dismissal of the
Internal Revenue Code and Section 3 (e) of Republic Act administrative action against him, because in such a
3019. The fact of his conviction was reported to the case, there is no more basis nor justifiable reason to
President of the Philippines and acting by authority of maintain the administrative suit. The Court also ruled
the latter, then Sr. Deputy Executive Secretary that the reorganization of the Bureau was tainted with
Leonardo A. Quisumbing issuedMemorandum Order No. circumstances considered as evidences of bad faith.
164 which provides for the creation of an Executive
Committee to investigate the administrative charge Petition granted.
against petitioner. The Committee directed the
petitioner to respond to the administrative charge.
SYLLABUS 1993 petitioner submitted his letter-response dated
September 30, 1993 to the administrative charge filed
1. CONSTITUTIONAL LAW; BILL OF RIGHTS; against him. Aside from his letter, he also submitted
PROCEDURAL DUE PROCESS; IT CANNOT BE ARGUED various documents attached as annexes to his letter, all
THAT PETITIONER WAS DENIED OF DUE PROCESS, AS of which are evidences supporting his defense. Prior to
THE RECORDS CLEARLY SHOW THAT HE SUBMITTED this, he received a letter dated September 17, 1993
HIS LETTER-RESPONSE TO THE ADMINISTRATIVE from the Investigation Committee requiring him to
CHARGE FILED AGAINST HIM AND OTHER DOCUMENTS explain his side concerning the charge. It cannot
ATTACHED AS ANNEXES TO HIS LETTER, ALL OF therefore be argued that petitioner was denied of due
WHICH ARE EVIDENCE SUPPORTING HIS DEFENSE. — process.
We are not unaware of the rule that since
administrative cases are independent from criminal 2. POLITICAL LAW; EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT; THE
actions for the same act or omission, the dismissal or FACT THAT PETITIONER IS A PRESIDENTIAL
acquittal of the criminal charge does not foreclose the APPOINTEE DOES NOT GIVE THE APPOINTING
institution of administrative action nor carry with it the AUTHORITY THE LICENSE TO REMOVE HIM AT WILL OR
relief from administrative liability. However, the AT HIS PLEASURE FOR IT IS AN ADMITTED FACT THAT
circumstantial setting of the instant case sets it miles HE IS LIKEWISE A CAREER SERVICE OFFICER WHO
apart from the foregoing rule and placed it well within UNDER THE LAW IS THE RECIPIENT OF TENURIAL
the exception. Corollarily, where the very basis of the PROTECTION, THUS, MAY ONLY BE REMOVED FOR A
administrative case against petitioner is his conviction CAUSE UNDER A VALID PROCEEDINGS. — Petitioner is
in the criminal action which was later on set aside by a presidential appointee who belongs to career service
this court upon a categorical and clear findings that of the Civil Service. Being a presidential appointee, he
the acts for which he was administratively held liable comes under the direct disciplining authority of the
are not unlawful and irregular, the acquittal of the President. This is in line with the well-settled principle
petitioner in the criminal case necessarily entails the that the "power to remove is inherent in the power to
dismissal of the administrative action against him, appoint" conferred to the President by Section 16,
because in such a case, there is no basis nor justifiable Article VII of the Constitution. Thus, it is ineluctably
reason to maintain the administrative suit. On the clear that Memorandum Order No. 164, which created a
aspect of procedural due process, suffice it to say that committee to investigate the administrative charge
petitioner was given every chance to present his side. against petitioner, was issued pursuant to the power of
The rule is well settled that the essence of due process removal of the President. This power of removal,
in administrative proceedings is that a party be however, is not an absolute one which accepts no
afforded a reasonable opportunity to be heard and to reservation. It must be pointed out that petitioner is a
submit any evidence he may have in support of his career service officer. Under the Administrative Code of
defense The records clearly show that on October 1, 1987, career service is characterized by the existence
of security of tenure, as contra-distinguished from non- approval of this act within which to implement their
career service whose tenure is co-terminus with that of respective reorganization plans in accordance with the
the appointing authority or subject to his pleasure, or provisions of this Act." Executive Order No. 127 was
limited to the period specified by law or to the duration part of the 1987 reorganization contemplated under
of a particular project for which purpose the said provision. Obviously, it had become stale by virtue
employment was made. As a career service officer, of the expiration of the ninety days deadline period. It
petitioner enjoys the right to security of tenure. No less can not thus be used as a proper basis for the
than the 1987 Constitution guarantees the right of reorganization of the BIR. Nevertheless, as shown
security of tenure of the employees of the civil service. earlier, there are other legal bases to sustain the
Specifically, Section 36 of P.D. No. 807, as amended, authority of the President to issue the questioned E.O.
otherwise known as Civil Service Decree of the No. 132.
Philippines, is emphatic that career service officers
and employees who enjoy security of tenure may be 4. ID.; ID.; ID.; WHEN IS A REORGANIZATION REGARDED
removed only for any of the causes enumerated in said AS VALID. — While the President's power to reorganize
law. In other words, the fact that the petitioner is a can not be denied, this does not mean however that the
presidential appointee does not give the appointing reorganization itself is properly made in accordance
authority the license to remove him at will or at his with law. Well-settled is the rule that reorganization is
pleasure for it is an admitted fact that he is likewise a regarded as valid provided it is pursued in good faith.
career service officer who under the law is the Thus, in Dario vs. Mison, this court has had the
recipient of tenurial protection, thus, may only be occasion to clarify that: "As a general rule, a
removed for a cause and in accordance with procedural reorganization is carried out in "good faith" if it is for
due process. the purpose of economy or to make bureaucracy more
efficient. In that event no dismissal or separation
3. ID.; ID.; ID.; EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 127 CANNOT BE actually occurs because the position itself ceases to
CONSIDERED AS THE LEGAL BASIS FOR THE exist. And in that case the security of tenure would not
REORGANIZATION OF THE BUREAU OF INTERNAL be a Chinese Wall. Be that as it may, if the abolition
REVENUE; REASON. — We can not consider E.O. No. 127 which is nothing else but a separation or removal, is
signed on January 30, 1987 as a legal basis for the done for political reasons or purposely to defeat
reorganization of the BIR. E.O. No. 127 should be security of tenure, or otherwise not in good faith, no
related to the second paragraph of Section 11 valid abolition takes place and whatever abolition is
of Republic Act No. 6656. Section 11 provides inter alia: done is void ab initio. There is an invalid abolition as
". . . In the case of the 1987 reorganization of the where there is merely a change of nomenclature of
executive branch, all departments and agencies which positions or where claims of economy are belied by the
are authorized by executive orders promulgated by the existence of ample funds."
President to reorganize shall have ninety days from the
5. ID.; ID.; ID.; CIRCUMSTANCES CONSIDERED AS 6. ID.; ID.; ID.; THE NON-REAPPOINTMENT OF THE
EVIDENCE OF BAD FAITH IN THE REORGANIZATION OF PETITIONER AS ASSISTANT COMMISSIONER VIOLATES
THE BUREAU OF INTERNAL REVENUE. — In this regard, SECTION 4 OF REPUBLIC ACT NO. 6656. — It is
it is worth mentioning that Section 2 of R.A. No. perceivable that the non-reappointment of the
6656 lists down the circumstances evidencing bad faith petitioner as Assistant Commissioner violates Section
in the removal of employees as a result of the 4 of R.A. 6656. Under said provision, officers holding
reorganization. A reading of some of the provisions of permanent appointments are given preference for
the questioned E.O. No. 132 clearly leads us to an appointment to the new positions in the approved
inescapable conclusion that there are circumstances staffing pattern comparable to their former positions or
considered as evidences of bad faith in the in case there are not enough comparable positions to
reorganization of the BIR. Section 1.1.2 of said positions next lower in rank. It is undeniable that
executive order provides that: "1.1.2 The intelligence petitioner is a career executive officer who is holding a
and Investigation Office and the Inspection Service are permanent position. Hence, he should have been given
abolished. An Intelligence and Investigation Service is preference for appointment in the position of Assistant
hereby created to absorb the same functions of the Commissioner. As claimed by petitioner, Antonio
abolished office and service. . . ." This provision is a Pangilinan who was one of those appointed as
clear illustration of the circumstance mentioned in Assistant Commissioner, "is an outsider of sorts to the
Section 2 (b) of R.A. No. 6656 that an office is abolished bureau, not having been an incumbent officer of the
and another one performing substantially the same Bureau at the time of the reorganization." We should
functions created. Another circumstance is the not lose sight of the second paragraph of Section 4
creation of services and divisions in the BIR resulting of R.A. No. 6656 which explicitly states that no new
to a significant increase in the number of positions in employees shall be taken in until all permanent officers
the said bureau as contemplated in paragraph (a) of shall have been appointed for permanent
Section 2 of R.A. No. 6656. Under Section 1.3 of E.O. No. position. cTDECH
132, the Information Systems Group has two newly
created Systems Services. Aside from this, six new
divisions are also created. Under Section 1.2.1, three
DECISION
more divisions of the Assessment Service are formed.
With these newly created offices, there is no doubt that
TORRES, JR., J p:
a significant increase of positions will correspondingly
follow. IHTASa
Challenged in this petition is the validity of petitioner's
removal from service as Assistant Commissioner of the
Excise Tax Service of the Bureau of Internal Revenue.
Incidentally, he questions Memorandum Order No.
164 issued by the Office of the President, which Evangelista, Accused," the dispositive portion of the
provides for the creation of "A Committee to judgment reads:
Investigate the Administrative Complaint Against
Aquilino T. Larin, Assistant Commissioner, Bureau of "WHEREFORE, judgment is now rendered
Internal Revenue" as well as the investigation made in in Criminal Cases Nos. 14208 and 14209
pursuance thereto, andAdministrative Order No. 101 convicting accused Assistant
dated December 2, 1993 which found him guilty of Commissioner for Specific Tax AQUILINO
grave misconduct in the administrative charge and T. LARIN, Chief of the Alcohol Tax
imposed upon him the penalty of dismissal from office. Division TEODORO P. PARENO, and Chief
of the Revenue Accounting Division
Likewise, petitioner seeks to assail the legality POTENCIANA M. EVANGELISTA:
of Executive Order No. 132, issued by President Ramos
on October 26, 1993, which provides for the xxx xxx xxx
"Streamlining of the Bureau of Internal Revenue," and
of its implementing rules issued by the Bureau of SO ORDERED."
Internal Revenue, namely: a) Administrative Order No.
4-93, which provides for the "Organizational Structure The fact of petitioner's conviction was reported to the
and Statement of General Functions of Offices in the President of the Philippines by the then Acting Finance
National Office" and b) Administrative Order No. 5-93, Secretary Leong through a memorandum dated June 4,
which provides for "Redefining the Areas of Jurisdiction 1993. The memorandum states, inter alia:
and Renumbering of Regional And District Offices."
'This is a report in the case of Assistant
The antecedent facts of the instant case as succinctly Commissioner AQUILINO T. LARIN of the
related by the Solicitor General are as follows: Excise Tax Service, Bureau of Internal
Revenue, a presidential appointee, one
On September 18, 1992, 1 a decision was rendered by of those convicted in Criminal Case Nos.
the Sandiganbayan convicting herein petitioner Aquilino 14208-14209, entitled 'People of the
T. Larin, Revenue Specific Tax Officer, then Assistant Philippines vs. Aquilino T. Larin, et. al.'
Commissioner of the Bureau of Internal Revenue and referred to the Department of Finance by
his co-accused (except Justino E. Galban, Jr.) of the the Commissioner of Internal Revenue.
crimes of violation of Section 268 (4) of the National
Internal Revenue Code and Section 3 (e) of R.A. 3019 in The cases against Pareno and
Criminal Cases Nos. 14208-14209, entitled "People of Evangelista are being acted upon by the
the Philippines, Plaintiff vs. Aquilino T. Larin, Teodoro T.
Pareno, Justino E. Galban, Jr. and Potenciana N.
Bureau of Internal Revenue as they are Presidential Assistant
non-presidential appointees.
Atty. Jaime M. Maza — Member
xxx xxx xxx
Assistant Commissioner for Inspector
It is clear from the foregoing that Services
Mr. Larin has been found beyond
reasonable doubt to have committed Bureau of Internal Revenue
acts constituting grave misconduct.
Under the Civil Service Laws and Rules The Committee shall have all the
which require only preponderance of powers and prerogatives of (an)
evidence, grave misconduct is investigating committee under
punishable by dismissal.' the Administrative Code of
1987 including the power to summon
Acting by authority of the President, Sr. Deputy witnesses, administer oath or take
Executive Secretary Leonardo A. Quisumbing testimony or evidence relevant to the
issued Memorandum Order No. 164 dated August 25, investigation by subpoena ad
1993 which provides for the creation of an Executive testificandum and subpoena duces
Committee to investigate the administrative charge tecum.
against herein petitioner Aquilino T. Larin. It states
thus: xxx xxx xxx

"A Committee is hereby created to The Committee shall convene


investigate the administrative complaint immediately, conduct the investigation
filed against Aquilino T. Larin, Assistant in the most expeditious manner, and
Commissioner, Bureau of Internal terminate the same as soon as
Revenue, to be composed of: practicable from its first scheduled date
of hearing.
Atty. Frumencio A. Lagustan — Chairman
xxx xxx xxx"
Assistant Executive Secretary for
Legislation Consequently, the Committee directed the petitioner to
respond to the administrative charge leveled against
Mr. Jose B. Alejandro — Member him through a letter dated September 17, 1993, thus:
'Presidential Memorandum Order No. 164 issues involved for fear of being cited in
dated August 25, 1993, a xerox copy of contempt of Court. This position paper is
which is hereto attached for your ready thus limited to furnishing the Committee
reference, created an Investigation pertinent documents submitted with the
Committee to look into the charges Supreme Court and other tribunal which
against you which are also the subject of took cognizance of the case in the past,
the Criminal Cases No. 14208 and 14209 as follows:
entitled People of the Philippines vs.
Aquilino T.Larin, et. al. cdrep xxx xxx xxx

The Committee has in its possession a The foregoing documents readily show
certified true copy of the Decision of the that I am not administratively liable or
Sandiganbayan in the above-mentioned criminally culpable of the charges
cases. leveled against me, and that the
aforesaid cases are mere persecutions
Pursuant to Presidential Memorandum caused to be filed and are being
Order No. 164, you are hereby directed to orchestrated by taxpayers who were
file your position paper on the prejudiced by multi-million peso
aforementioned charges within seven (7) assessments I caused to be issued
days from receipt hereof . . . against them in my official capacity as
Assistant Commissioner, Excise Tax
Failure to file the required position paper Office of the Bureau of Internal
shall be considered as a waiver on your Revenue.'
part to submit such paper or to be heard,
in which case, the Committee shall In the same letter, petitioner claims that the
deem the case submitted on the basis of administrative complaint against him is already barred:
the documents and records at hand.' a) on jurisdictional ground as the Office of the
Ombudsman had already taken cognizance of the case
In compliance, petitioner submitted a letter dated and had caused the filing only of the criminal charges
September 30, 1993 which was addressed to Atty. against him, b) by res judicata, c) by double jeopardy,
Frumencio A. Lagustan, the Chairman of the and d) because to proceed with the case would be
Investigating Committee. In said latter, he asserts that, redundant, oppressive and a plain persecution against
him.
'The case being sub-judice, I may not,
therefore, comment on the merits of the
Meanwhile, the President issued the 8. Antonio N. Pangilinan
challenged Executive Order No. 132 dated October 26,
1993 which mandates for the streamlining of the 9. Melchor S. Ramos
Bureau of Internal Revenue. Under said order, some
positions and functions are either abolished, renamed, 10. Joel L. Tan-Torres
decentralized or transferred to other offices, while
other offices are also created. The Excise Tax Service Consequently, the President, in the
or the Specific Tax Service, of which petitioner was the assailed Administrative Order No. 101 dated December
Assistant Commissioner, was one of those offices that 2, 1993, found petitioner guilty of grave misconduct in
was abolished by said executive order. the administrative charge and imposed upon him the
penalty of dismissal with forfeiture of his leave credits
The corresponding implementing rules of Executive and retirement benefits including disqualification for
Order No. 132, namely, Revenue Administrative Orders reappointment in the government service.
Nos. 4-93 and 5-93, were subsequently issued by the
Bureau of Internal Revenue. Aggrieved, petitioner filed directly with this Court the
instant petition on December 13, 1993 to question
On October 27, 1993, or one day after the promulgation basically his alleged unlawful removal from office.
of Executive Order No. 132, the President appointed the
following as BIR Assistant Commissioners: On April 17, 1996 and while the instant petition is
pending, this Court set aside the conviction of
1. Bernardo A. Frianeza petitioner in Criminal Case Nos. 14208 and 14209.

2. Dominador L. Galura

3. Jaime D. Gonzales In his petition, petitioner challenged the authority of


the President to dismiss him from office. He argued
4. Lilia C. Guillermo that in so far as presidential appointees who are Career
Executive Service Officers are concerned, the
5. Rizalina S . Magalona President exercises only the power of control not the
power to remove. He also averred that the
6. Victorino C. Mamalateo administrative investigation conducted
under Memorandum Order No. 164 is void as it violated
7. Jaime M. Maza his right to due process. According to him, the letter of
the Committee dated September 17, 1993 and his
position paper dated September 30, 1993 are not 6656 future reorganization is expressly contemplated
sufficient for purposes of complying with the and nothing in said law that prohibits subsequent
requirements of due process. He alleged that he was reorganization through an executive order. Significantly,
not informed of the administrative charges leveled respondents clarified that petitioner was not dismissed
against him nor was he given official notice of his by virtue of EO 132. Respondents claimed that he was
dismissal. removed from office because he was found guilty of
grave misconduct in the administrative cases filed
Petitioner likewise claimed that he was removed as a against him.
result of the reorganization made by the Executive
Department in the BIR pursuant to Executive Order No. The ultimate issue to be resolved in the instant case
132. Thus, he assailed said Executive Order No. 132 and falls on the determination of the validity of petitioner's
its implementing rules, namely, Revenue Administrative dismissal from office. Incidentally, in order to resolve
Orders 4-93 and 5-93 for being ultra vires. He claimed this matter, it is imperative that We consider these
that there is yet no law enacted by Congress which questions: a) Who has the power to discipline the
authorizes the reorganization by the Executive petitioner?, b) Were the proceedings taken pursuant
Department of executive agencies, particularly the to Memorandum Order No. 164 in accord with due
Bureau of Internal Revenue. He said that the process?, c) What is the effect of petitioner's acquittal
reorganization sought to be effected by the Executive in the criminal case to his administrative charge?, d)
Department on the basis of E.O. No. 132 is tainted with Does the President have the power to reorganize the
bad faith in apparent violation of Section 2 of R.A. 6656, BIR or to issue the questioned E.O. NO. 132?, and e) Is
otherwise known as the Act Protecting the Security of the reorganization of BIR pursuant to E.O. No. 132
Tenure of Civil Service Officers and Employees in the tainted with bad faith?
Implementation of Government Reorganization.
At the outset, it is worthy to note that the position of
On the other hand, respondents contended that since Assistant Commissioner of the BIR is part of the Career
petitioner is a presidential appointee, he falls under the Executive Service. 2 Under the law, 3 Career Executive
disciplining authority of the President. They also Service officers, namely, Undersecretary, Assistant
contended that E.O. No. 132 and its implementing rules Secretary, Bureau Director, Assistant Bureau Director,
were validly issued pursuant to Sections 48 and 62 Regional Director, Assistant Regional Director, Chief of
of Republic Act No. 7645. Apart from this, the other Department Service and other officers of equivalent
legal bases of E.O. No. 132 as stated in its preamble are rank as may be identified by the Career Executive
Section 63 of E.O. No. 127 (Reorganizing the Ministry of Service Board, are all appointed by the President.
Finance), and Section 20, Book III of E.O. No. 292, Concededly, petitioner was appointed as Assistant
otherwise known as the Administrative Code of 1987. In Commissioner in January, 1987 by then President
addition, it is clear that in Section 11 of R.A. No. Aquino. Thus, petitioner is a presidential appointee who
belongs to career service of the Civil Service. Being a removed for a cause and in accordance with procedural
presidential appointee, he comes under the direct due process. cdasia
disciplining authority of the President. This is in line
with the well settled principle that the "power to Was petitioner then removed from office for a legal
remove is inherent in the power to appoint" conferred cause under a valid proceeding?
to the President by Section 16, Article VII of
the Constitution. Thus, it is ineluctably clear Although the proceedings taken complied with the
that Memorandum Order No. 164, which created a requirements of procedural due process, this Court,
committee to investigate the administrative charge however, considers that petitioner was not dismissed
against petitioner, was issued pursuant to the power of for a valid cause.
removal of the President. This power of removal,
however, is not an absolute one which accepts no It should be noted that what precipitated the creation
reservation. It must be pointed out that petitioner is a of the investigative committee to look into the
career service officer. Under the Administrative Code of administrative charge against petitioner is his
1987, career service is characterized by the existence conviction by the Sandiganbayan in Criminal Case Nos.
of security of tenure, as contra-distinguished from non- 14208 and 14209. As admitted by the respondents, the
career service whose tenure is co-terminus with that of administrative case against petitioner is based on the
the appointing authority or subject to his pleasure, or Sandiganbayan Decision of September 18, 1992. Thus,
limited to a period specified by law or to the duration of in the Administrative Order No. 101 issued by Senior
a particular project for which purpose the employment Deputy Executive Secretary Quisumbing which found
was made. As a career service officer, petitioner enjoys petitioner guilty of grave misconduct, it clearly states
the right to security of tenure. No less than the 1987 that:
Constitution guarantees the right of security of tenure
of the employees of the civil service. "This pertains to the administrative
Specifically, Section 36 of P.D. No. 807, as amended, charge against Assistant Commissioner
otherwise known as Civil Service Decree of the Aquilino T. Larin of the Bureau of Internal
Philippines, is emphatic that career service officers Revenue, for grave misconduct by virtue
and employees who enjoy security of tenure may be of a Memorandum signed by Acting
removed only for any of the causes enumerated in said Secretary Leong of the Department of
law. In other words, the fact that petitioner is a Finance, on the basis of a
presidential appointee does not give the appointing decision handed down by the Hon.
authority the license to remove him at will or at his Sandiganbayan convicting Larin, et. al. in
pleasure for it is an admitted fact that he is likewise a Criminal Case Nos. 14208 and 14209." 4
career service officer who under the law is the
recipient of tenurial protection, thus, may only be
In a nutshell, the criminal cases against petitioner refer fraud of tax revenue of the
to his alleged violation of Section 268 (4) of the government . . ." 5
National Internal Revenue Code and of Section 3 (e)
of R.A. No. 3019 as a consequence of his act of However, it must be stressed at this juncture that the
favorably recommending the grant of tax credit to conviction of petitioner by the Sandiganbayan was set
Tanduay Distillery, Inc. The pertinent portion of the aside by this Court in our decision promulgated on April
judgment of the Sandiganbayan reads: 17, 1996 in G.R. Nos. 108037-38 and 107119-20. We
specifically ruled in no uncertain terms that: a)
"As above pointed out, the accused had petitioner can not be held negligent in relying on the
conspired in knowingly preparing false certification of a co-equal unit in the BIR, b) it is not
memoranda and certification in order to incumbent upon Larin to go beyond the certification
effect a fraud upon taxes due to the made by the Revenue Accounting Division that Tanduay
government. By their separate acts Distillery, Inc. had paid the ad valorem taxes, c) there is
which had resulted in an appropriate tax nothing irregular or anything false in Larin's marginal
credit of P180,701,682.00 in favor of note on the memorandum addressed to Pareno, the
Tanduay. The government had been Chief of Alcohol Tax Division who was also one of the
defrauded of a tax revenue — for the full accused, but eventually acquitted, in the said criminal
amount, if one is to look at the cases, and d) there is no proof of actual agreement
availments or utilization thereof between the accused, including petitioner, to commit
(Exhibits 'AA' to 'AA-31-a'), or for a the illegal acts charged. We are emphatic in our
substantial portion thereof resolution in said cases that there is nothing "illegal
(P73,000,000.00) if we are to rely on the with the acts committed by the petitioner(s)." We also
letter of Deputy Commissioner Eufracio declare that "there is no showing that petitioner(s) had
D. Santos (Exhibits '21' for all the acted irregularly, or performed acts outside of his
accused). (their) official functions." Significantly, these acts
which We categorically declare to be not unlawful and
As pointed out above, the confluence of improper in G.R. Nos. 108037-38 and G.R. Nos. 107119-
acts and omissions committed by 20 are the very same acts for which petitioner is held
accused Larin, Pareno and Evangelista to be administratively responsible. Any charge of
adequately prove conspiracy among malfeasance or misfeasance on the part of the
them for no other purpose than to bring petitioner is clearly belied by our conclusion in said
about a tax credit which Tanduay did not cases. In the light of this decisive pronouncement, We
deserve. These misrepresentations as to see no reason for the administrative charge to continue
how much Tanduay had paid in ad — it must, thus, be dismissed.
valorem taxes obviously constituted a
We are not unaware of the rule that since Committee requiring him to explain his side concerning
administrative cases are independent from criminal the charge. It can not therefore be argued that
actions for the same act or omission, the dismissal or petitioner was denied of due process.
acquittal of the criminal charge does not foreclose the
institution of administrative action nor carry with it the Let us now examine Executive Order No. 132.
relief from administrative liability. 6 However, the
circumstantial setting of the instant case sets it miles As stated earlier, with the issuance of Executive Order
apart from the foregoing rule and placed it well within No. 132, some of the positions and offices, including
the exception. Corollarily, where the very basis of the the office of Excise Tax Services of which petitioner
administrative case against petitioner is his conviction was the Assistant Commissioner, were abolished or
in the criminal action which was later on set aside by otherwise decentralized. Consequently, the President
this Court upon a categorical and clear finding that the released the list of appointed Assistant Commissioners
acts for which he was administratively held liable are of the BIR. Apparently, petitioner was not included.
not unlawful and irregular, the acquittal of the
petitioner in the criminal case necessarily entails the Initially, it is argued that there is no law yet which
dismissal of the administrative action against him, empowers the President to issue E.O. No. 132 or to
because in such a case, there is no more basis nor reorganize the BIR.
justifiable reason to maintain the administrative suit.
We do not agree.

Under its preamble, E.O. No. 132 lays down the legal
On the aspect of procedural due process, suffice it to bases of its issuance, namely: a) Section 48 and 62
say that petitioner was given every chance to present of R.A. No. 7645, b) Section 63 of E.O. No. 127, and c)
his side. The rule is well settled that the essence of Section 20, Book III of E.O. No. 292.
due process in administrative proceedings is that a
party be afforded a reasonable opportunity to be heard Section 48 of R.A. 7645 provides that:
and to submit any evidence he may have in support of
his defense. 7 The records clearly show that on "Sec. 48. Scaling Down and Phase Out of
October 1, 1993 petitioner submitted his letter- Activities of Agencies Within the
response dated September 30, 1993 to the Executive Branch. — The heads of
administrative charge filed against him. Aside from his departments, bureaus and offices and
letter, he also submitted various documents attached agencies are hereby directed to identify
as annexes to his letter, all of which are evidences their respective activities which are no
supporting his defense. Prior to this, he received a longer essential in the delivery of public
letter dated September 17, 1993 from the Investigation
services and which may be scaled down, constitutionality. 8 Unless and until a specific provision
phased out or abolished, subject to civil of the law is declared invalid and unconstitutional, the
service rules and regulations. . . . Actual same is valid and binding for all intents and purposes.
scaling down, phasing out or abolition of
the activities shall be effected pursuant Another legal basis of E.O. No. 132 is Section 20, Book
to Circulars or Orders issued for the III of E.O. No. 292 which states:
purpose by the Office of the President."
(emphasis ours) "Sec. 20. Residual Powers. — Unless
Congress provides otherwise, the
Said provision clearly mentions the acts of "scaling President shall exercise such other
down, phasing out and abolition" of offices only and powers and functions vested in the
does not cover the creation of offices or transfer of President which are provided for under
functions. Nevertheless, the act of creating and the laws and which are not specifically
decentralizing is included in the subsequent provision enumerated above or which are not
of Section 62, which provides that: delegated by the President in
accordance with law." (emphasis ours)
"Sec. 62. Unauthorized organizational
changes. — Unless otherwise created by This provision speaks of such other powers vested in
law or directed by the President of the the President under the law. What law then which gives
Philippines, no organizational unit or him the power to reorganize? It is Presidential Decree
changes in key positions in any No. 1772 9which amended Presidential Decree No.
department or agency shall be 1416. These decrees expressly grant the President of
authorized in their respective the Philippines the continuing authority to reorganize
organization structures and be funded the national government, which includes the power to
from appropriations by this Act." group, consolidate bureaus and agencies, to abolish
(emphasis ours) offices, to transfer functions, to create and classify
functions, services and activities and to standardize
The foregoing provision evidently shows that the salaries and materials. The validity of these two
President is authorized to effect organizational decrees are unquestionable. The 1987
changes including the creation of offices in the Constitution clearly provides that "all laws, decrees,
department or agency concerned. executive orders, proclamations, letters of instructions
and other executive issuances not inconsistent with
The contention of petitioner that the two provisions are this Constitution shall remain operative until amended,
riders deserves scant consideration. Well settled is the repealed or revoked." 10 So far, there is yet no law
rule that every law has in its favor the presumption of amending or repealing said decrees. Significantly, the
Constitution itself recognizes future reorganizations in expiration of the ninety day deadline period. It can not
the government as what is revealed inSection 16 of thus be used as a proper basis for the reorganization of
Article XVIII, thus: the BIR. Nevertheless, as shown earlier, there are other
legal bases to sustain the authority of the President to
"Sec. 16. Career civil service employees issue the questioned E.O. No. 132.
separated from service not for cause but
as a result of the . . . reorganization While the President's power to reorganize can not be
following the ratification of denied, this does not mean however that the
this Constitutionshall be entitled to reorganization itself is properly made in accordance
appropriate separation pay . . ." with law. Well-settled is the rule that reorganization is
regarded as valid provided it is pursued in good faith.
However, We can not consider E.O. No. 127 signed on Thus, in Dario vs. Mison, this Court has had the
January 30, 1987 as a legal basis for the reorganization occasion to clarify that:
of the BIR. E.O. No. 127 should be related to the second
paragraph of Section 11 of Republic Act No. 6656. "As a general rule, a reorganization is
carried out in 'good faith' if it is for the
Section 11 provides inter alia: purpose of economy or to make
bureaucracy more efficient. In that event
"xxx xxx xxx no dismissal or separation actually
occurs because the position itself
In the case of the 1987 reorganization of ceases to exist. And in that case the
the executive branch, all departments security of tenure would not be a
and agencies which are authorized by Chinese wall. Be that as it may, if the
executive orders promulgated by the abolition which is nothing else but a
President to reorganize shall have ninety separation or removal, is done for
days from the approval of this act within political reasons or purposely to defeat
which to implement their respective security of tenure, or otherwise not in
reorganization plans in accordance with good faith, no valid abolition takes place
the provisions of this Act." (emphasis and whatever abolition is done is void ab
ours) initio. There is an invalid abolition as
where there is merely a change of
Executive Order No. 127 was part of the 1987 nomenclature of positions or where
reorganization contemplated under said provision. claims of economy are belied by the
Obviously, it had become stale by virtue of the existence of ample funds." 11
In this regard, it is worth mentioning that Section 2 of c) Where incumbents are replaced by
R. A. No. 6656 lists down the circumstances evidencing those less qualified in terms of status of
bad faith in the removal of employees as a result of the appointment, performance and merit;
reorganization, thus:
d) Where there is a reclassification of
Sec. 2. No officer or employee in the offices in the department or agency
career service shall be removed except concerned and the reclassified offices
for a valid cause and after due notice perform substantially the same
and hearing. A valid cause for removal functions as the original offices;
exists when, pursuant to a bona fide
reorganization, a position has been e) Where the removal violates the order
abolished or rendered redundant or there of separation provided in Section 3
is a need to merge, divide, or hereof."
consolidate positions in order to meet
the exigencies of the service, or other A reading of some of the provisions of the questioned
lawful causes allowed by the Civil E.O. No. 132 clearly leads us to an inescapable
Service Law. The existence of any or conclusion that there are circumstances considered as
some of the following circumstances evidences of bad faith in the reorganization of the
may be considered as evidence of bad BIR. cdrep
faith in the removals made as a result of
the reorganization, giving rise to a claim Section 1.1.2 of said executive order provides that:
for reinstatement or reappointment by
an aggrieved party: "1.1.2 The Intelligence and Investigation
Office and the Inspection Service are
a) Where there is a significant increase abolished. An Intelligence and
in the number of positions in the new Investigation Service is hereby created
staffing pattern of the department or to absorb thesame functions of the
agency concerned; abolished office and service. . . ."
(emphasis ours)
b) Where an office is abolished and
another performing substantially the This provision is a clear illustration of the
same functions is created; circumstance mentioned in Section 2 (b) of R.A. No.
6656 that an office is abolished and another one
performing substantially the same function is created.
Another circumstance is the creation of services and IN VIEW OF THE FOREGOING, the petition is granted,
divisions in the BIR resulting to a significant increase and petitioner is hereby reinstated to his position as
in the number of positions in the said bureau as Assistant Commissioner without loss of seniority rights
contemplated in paragraph (a) of Section 2 of R.A. No. and shall be entitled to full backwages from the time of
6656. Under Section 1.3 of E.O. No. 132, the Information his separation from service until actual reinstatement
Systems Group has two newly created Systems unless, in the meanwhile, he would have reached the
Services. Aside from this, six new divisions are also compulsory retirement age of sixty-five years in which
created. Under Section 1.2.1, three more divisions of case, he shall be deemed to have retired at such age
the Assessment Service are formed. With these newly and entitled thereafter to the corresponding retirement
created offices, there is no doubt that a significant benefits.
increase of positions will correspondingly follow.
SO ORDERED.

Narvasa, C .J ., Davide, Jr., Romero, Bellosillo, Melo,


Furthermore, it is perceivable that the non- Puno, Vitug, Kapunan, Mendoza, Francisco,
reappointment of the petitioner as Assistant Hermosisima, Jr. and Panganiban, JJ ., concur.
Commissioner violates Section 4 of R.A. No. 6656.
Under said provision, officers holding permanent Regalado, J ., is on leave.
appointments are given preference for appointment to
the new positions in the approved staffing pattern
comparable to their former positions or in case there
are not enough comparable positions to positions next
lower in rank. It is undeniable that petitioner is a career
executive officer who is holding a permanent position.
Hence, he should have been given preference for
appointment in the position of Assistant Commissioner.
As claimed by petitioner, Antonio Pangilinan who was
one of those appointed as Assistant Commissioner, "is
an outsider of sorts to the Bureau, not having been an
incumbent officer of the Bureau at the time of the
reorganization." We should not lose sight of the second
paragraph of Section 4 of R.A. No. 6656 which explicitly
states that no new employees shall be taken in until all
permanent officers shall have been appointed for
permanent position.
BAKAL, ROSARIO DAVID, RODOLFO AFUANG,
LORENZO CATRE, LEONCIA CATRE,
ROBERTO
EN BANC ABADA,petitioners, vs. COMMISSIONER
SALVADOR M. MISON, COMMISSIONER,
BUREAU OF CUSTOMS, respondent.
[G.R. No. 81954. August 8, 1989.]
[G.R. No. 83737. August 8, 1989]
CESAR Z. DARIO, petitioner, vs. HON.
SALVADOR M. MISON, HON. VICENTE JAYME
and HON. CATALINO MACARAIG, JR., in their BENEDICTO L. AMASA and WILLIAM S.
respective capacities as Commissioner of Customs, DIONISIO, petitioners, vs. PATRICIA A. STO.
Secretary of Finance, and Executive TOMAS, in her capacity as Chairman of the Civil
Secretary, respondents. Service Commission and SALVADOR MISON, in
his capacity as Commissioner of the Bureau of
Customs, respondents.
[G.R. No. 81967 August 8, 1989]
[G.R. No. 85310. August 8, 1989.]
VICENTE A. FERIA, JR., petitioner, vs. HON.
SALVADOR M. MISON, HON. VICENTE JAYME,
and HON. CATALINO MACARAIG, JR., in their SALVADOR M. MISON, in his capacity as
respective capacities as Commissioner of Customs, Commissioner of Customs, petitioner, vs. CIVIL
Secretary of Finance, and Executive SERVICE COMMISSION, ABACA, SISINIO T.,
Secretary, respondents. ABAD, ROGELIO C., ABADIANO, JOSE P.,
ABCEDE, NEMECIO C., ABIOG, ELY F.,
ABLAZA, AURORA M., AGBAYANI, NELSON I.,
[G.R. No. 82023 August 8, 1989]
AGRES, ANICETO, AGUILAR, FLOR,
AGUILUCHO, MA. TERESA R., AGUSTIN,
ADOLFO CASARENO, PACIFICO LAGLEVA, BONIFACIO T., ALANO, ALEX P., ALBA,
JULIAN C. ESPIRITU, DENNIS A. AZARRAGA, MAXIMO F. JR., ALBANO, ROBERT B.,
RENATO DE JESUS, NICASIO C. GAMBOA, ALCANTARA, JOSE G., ALMARIO, RODOLFO
CORAZON RALLOS NIEVES, FELICITACION F., ALVEZ, ROMUALDO R., AMISTAD, RUDY M.,
R. GELUZ, LEODEGARIO H. FLORESCA, AMOS, FRANCIS F., ANDRES, RODRIGO V.,
SUBAER PACASUM, ZENAIDA LANARIA, JOSE ANGELES, RICARDO S., ANOLIN, MILAGROS
B. ORTIZ, GLICERIO R. DOLAR, CORNELIO H., AQUINO, PASCASIO E., ARABE, MELINDA
NAPA, PABLO B. SANTOS, FERMIN M., ARCANGEL, AGUSTIN S., JR., ARPON,
RODRIGUEZ, DALISAY BAUTISTA, ULPIANO U., JR., ARREZA, ARTEMIO M., JR.,
LEONARDO JOSE, ALBERTO LONTOK, ARROJO, ANTONIO P., ARVISU, ALEXANDER
PORFIRIO TABINO, JOSE BARREDO, S., ASCAÑO, ANTONIO T., ASLAHON,
ROBERTO ARNALDO, ESTER TAN, PEDRO JULAHON P., ASUNCION, VICTOR R.,
ATANGAN, LORNA S., ATIENZA, ALEXANDER M., FERRAREN, ANTONIO C., FERRERA,
R., BACAL, URSULINO C., BAÑAGA, WENCESLAO A., FRANCISCO, PELAGIO S.,
MARLOWE, Z., BANTA, ALBERTO T., JR., FUENTES, RUDY L., GAGALANG, RENATO
BARREDO, JOSE B., BARROS, VICTOR C., V., GALANG, EDGARDO R., GAMBOA,
BARTOLOME, FELIPE A., BAYSAC, ANTONIO C., GAN, ALBERTO R., GARCIA,
REYNALDO S., BELENO, ANTONIO B., GILBERT M., GARCIA, EDNA V., CARCIA,
BERNARDO, ROMEO D., BERNAS, MARCIANO JUAN L., GAVIOLA, LILIAN V., GEMPARO,
S., BOHOL, AUXILIADOR G., BRAVO, VICTOR SEGUNDINA G., GOBENCIONG, FLORDELIZ
M., BULEG, BALILIS R., CALNEA, MERCEDES B., GRATE, FREDERICK R., GREGORIO,
M., CALVO, HONESTO G., CAMACHO, CARLOS LAURO P., GUARTICO, AMMON H., GUIANG,
V., CAMPOS, RODOLFO C., CAPULONG, MYRNA N., GUINTO, DELFIN C., HERNANDEZ,
RODRIGO G., CARINGAL, GRACIA Z., LUCAS A., HONRALES, LORETO N., HUERTO,
CARLOS, LORENZO B., CARRANTO, FIDEL U., LEOPOLDO H., HULAR, LANNYROSS E.,
CARUNGCONG, ALFREDO M., CASTRO, IBAÑEZ, ESTER C., ILAGAN, HONORATO C.,
PATRICIA J., CATELO, ROGELIO B., CATURLA, INFANTE, REYNALDO C., ISAIS, RAY C.,
MANUEL B., CENIZAL, JOSEFINA F., CINCO, ISMAEL, HADJI AKRAM B., JANOLO,
LUISITO, CONDE, JOSE C., JR., CORCUERA, VIRGILIO M., JAVIER, AMADOR L., JAVIER,
FIDEL S., CORNETA, VICENTE S., CORONADO, ROBERTO S., JAVIER, WILLIAM R., JOVEN,
RICARDO S., CRUZ, EDUARDO S., CRUZ MEMIA A., JULIAN, REYNALDO V., JUMAMOY,
EDILBERTO A., CRUZ, EFIGENIA B., ABUNDIO A., JUMAQUIAO, DOMINGO F.,
CRUZADO, MARCIAL C., CUSTODIO, KAINDOY, PASCUAL B., JR., KOH, NANIE G.,
RODOLFO M., DABON, NORMA M., DALINDIN, LABILLES, ERNESTO S., LABRADOR,
EDNA MAE D., DANDAL, EDEN F., WILFREDO M., LAGA, BIENVENIDO M.,
DATUHARON, SATA A., DAZO, GODOFREDO L., LAGLEVA, PACIFICO Z., LAGMAN,
DE CASTRO, LEOPAPA, DE GUZMAN, EVANGELINE G., LAMPONG, WILFREDO G.,
ANTONIO A., DE GUZMAN, RENATO E., DE LA LANDICHO, RESTITUTO A., LAPITAN,
CRUZ, AMADO A., JR., DE LA CRUZ, CAMILO M., LAURENTE, REYNALDO A.,
FRANCISCO C., DE LA PENA, LEONARDO, DEL LICARTE, EVARISTO R., LIPIO, VICTOR O.,
CAMPO, ORLANDO, DEL RIO, MAMERTO P., LITTAUA, FRANKLIN Z., LOPEZ, MELENCIO
JR., DEMESA, WILHELMINA T., DIMAKUTA, L., LUMBA, OLIVIA R., MACAISA, BENITO T.,
SALIC L., DIZON, FELICITAS A., DOCTOR, MACAISA, ERLINDA C., MAGAT, ELPIDIO,
HEIDY M., DOLAR, GLICERIO R., DOMINGO, MAGLAYA, FERNANDO P., MALABANAN,
NICANOR J., DOMINGO, PERFECTO V., JR., ALFREDO C., MALIBIRAN, ROSITA D.,
DUAY, JUANA G., DYSANGCO, RENATO F., MALIJAN, LAZARO V., MALLI, JAVIER M.,
EDILLOR, ALFREDO P., ELEVAZO, MANAHAN, RAMON S., MANUEL, ELPIDIO R.,
LEONARDO A., ESCUYOS, MANUEL M., JR., MARAVILLA, GIL B., MARCELO, GIL C.,
ESMERIA, ANTONIO E., ESPALDON, MA. MARIÑAS, RODOLFO V., MAROKET, JESUS C.,
LOURDES H., ESPINA, FRANCO A., ESTURCO, MARTIN, NEMENCIO A., MARTINEZ, ROMEO
RODOLFO C., EVANGELINO, FERMIN I., M., MARTINEZ, ROSELINA M., MATIBAG,
FELIX, ERNESTO G., FERNANDEZ, ANDREW ANGELINA G., MATUGAS, ERNESTO T.,
MATUGAS, FRANCISCO T., MAYUGA, PORTIA SUNICO, ABELARDO T., TABIJE, EMMA B.,
E., MEDINA, NESTOR M., MEDINA, ROLANDO TAN, RUDY GOROSPE, TAN, ESTER, S., TAN,
S., MENDAVIA, AVELINO I., MENDOZA, JULITA S., TECSON, BEATRIZ B., TOLENTINO,
POTENCIANO G., MIL, RAY M., MIRAVALLES, BENIGNO A., TURINGAN, ENRICO T., JR.,
ANASTACIA L., MONFORTE, EUGENIO, JR., G., UMPA, ALI A., VALIC, LUCIO E., VASQUEZ,
MONTANO, ERNESTO F., MONTERO, JUAN M. NICANOR B., VELARDE, EDGARDO C., VERA,
III., MORALDE, ESMERALDO B., JR., AVELINO A., VERAME, OSCAR E., VIADO,
MORALES, CONCHITA D.L., MORALES, LILIAN T., VIERNES, NAPOLEON K.,
NESTOR P., MORALES, SHIRLEY S., MUNAR, VILLALON, DENNIS A., VILLAR, LUZ L.,
JUANITA L., MUÑOZ, VICENTE R., MURILLO, VILLALUZ, EMELITO V., ZATA, ANGEL A., JR.,
MANUEL M., NACION, PEDRO R., NAGAL, ACHARON, CRISTETO, ALBA, RENATO B.,
HENRY N., NAPA, CORNELIO B., NAVARRO, AMON, JULITA C., AUSTRIA, ERNESTO C.,
HENRY L., NEJAL, FREDRICK E., NICOLAS, CALO, RAYMUNDO M., CENTENO, BENJAMIN
REYNALDO S., NIEVES, RUFINO A., OLAIVAR, R., DE CASTRO, LEOPAPA C., DONATO,
SEBASTIAN T., OLEGARIO, LEO Q., ORTEGA, ESTELITA P., DONATO, FELIPE S., FLORES,
ARLENE R., ORTEGA, JESUS R., OSORIO, PEDRITO S., GALAROSA, RENATO, MALAWI,
ABNER S., PAPIO, FLORENTINO T. II, PASCUA, MAUYAG, MONTENEGRO, FRANCISCO M.,
ARNULFO A., PASTOR, ROSARIO, PELAYO, OMEGA, PETRONILO T., SANTOS,
ROSARIO L., PEÑA, AIDA C., PEREZ, GUILLERMO F., TEMPLO, CELSO,
ESPERIDION B., PEREZ, JESUS BAYANI M., VALDERAMA, JAIME B., and VALDEZ, NORA
PRE, ISIDRO A., PRUDENCIADO, EULOGIA S., M., respondents.
PUNZALAN, LAMBERTO N., PURA, ARNOLD T.,
QUINONES, EDGARDO I., QUINTOS, AMADEO [G.R. No. 85335. August 8, 1989.]
C., JR., QUIRAY, NICOLAS C., RAMIREZ,
ROBERTO P., RAÑADA, RODRIGO C., RARAS,
ANTONIO A., RAVAL, VIOLETA V., RAZAL, FRANKLIN Z. LITTAUA, ADAN I. ROSETE,
BETTY R., REGALA, PONCE F., REYES, FRANCISCO T. MATUGAS, MA. J. ANGELINA
LIBERATO R., REYES, MANUEL E., REYES, G. MATIBAG, LEODEGARDIO H. FLORESCA,
NORMA Z., REYES, TELESFORO F., RIVERA, LEONARDO A. DELA PEÑA, ABELARDO T.
ROSITA L., ROCES, ROBERTO V., ROQUE, SUNICO, MELENCIO L. LOPEZ, NEMENCIO A.
TERESITA S., ROSANES, MARILOU M., MARTIN, RUDY M. AMISTAD, ERNESTO T.
ROSETE, ADAN I., RUANTO, REY CRISTO C., MATUGAS, SILVERIA S. SALAZAR, LILLIAN V.
JR., SABLADA, PASCASIO G., SALAZAR GAVIOLA, MILAGROS ANOLIN, JOSE B.
SILVERIA S., SALAZAR, VICTORIA A., ORTIZ, ARTEMIO ARREZA, JR., GILVERTO M.
SALIMBACOD, PERLITA C., SALMINGO, GARCIA, ANTONIO A. RARAS, FLORDELINA B.
LOURDES M., SANTIAGO, EMELITA B., GOBENCIONG, ANICETO AGRES, EDGAR Y.
SATINA, PORFIRIO C., SEKITO, COSME B., JR., QUINONES, MANUEL B. CATURLA, ELY F.
SIMON, RAMON P., SINGSON, MELECIO C., ABIOG, RODRIGO C. RAÑADA, LAURO
SORIANO, ANGELO L., SORIANO, GREGORIO, ALBERTO I. GAN, EDGARDO
MAGDALENA R., SUMULONG, ISIDRO L., JR., GALANG, RAY C. ISAIS, NICANOR B.
VASQUEZ, MANUEL ESCUYOS, JR., ANTONIO remark or opinion uttered, by the way. It is a statement of the court
B. BELENO, ELPIO R. MANUEL, AUXILIADOR concerning a question which was not directly before it (In re Hess, 23 A. 2d.
C. BOHOL, LEONARDO ELEVAZO, VICENTE S. 298, 301, 20 N.J. Misc. 12). It is language unnecessary to a decision, (a)
CORNETA, petitioners, vs. COM. SALVADOR M. ruling on an issue not raised, or (an) opinion of a judge which does not
MISON/BUREAU OF CUSTOMS and the CIVIL embody the resolution or determination of the court, and is made without
SERVICE COMMISSION, respondents. argument or full consideration of the point (Lawson v. US, 176 F2d 49, 51,
85 U.S. App. D.C. 167). It is an expression of opinion by the court or judge
[G.R. No. 86241. August 8, 1989.] on a collateral question not directly involved, (Crescent Ring Co. v.
Traveler's Indemnity Co. 132 A. 106, 107, 102 N.J. Law 85) or not
necessary for the decision (Du Bell v. Union Central Life Ins. Co., 29, So.
SALVADOR M. MISON, in his capacity as 2d 709, 712; 211 La. 167).
Commissioner of Customs, petitioner, vs. CIVIL
SERVICE COMMISSION, SENEN S.
DIMAGUILA, ROMEO P. ARABE, BERNARDO S.
QUINTONG, GREGORIO P. REYES, and
ROMULO C. BADILLO, respondents. 4. ID.; ID.; ID.; RESOLUTION OF THE ULTIMATE ISSUES, NOT AN
OBITER. — The ruling of the Court, therefore, on the Constitutional issues
presented, particularly, the lapse of the period mandated by Proclamation
SYLLABUS No. 3, and the validity of EO 127, cannot be said to be mere "obiter." They
were ultimate issues directly before the Court, expressly decided in the
course of the consideration of the case, so that any resolution thereon must
MELENCIO-HERRERA, J., dissenting opinion:
be considered as authoritative precedent, and not a mere dictum (See Valli v.
US, 94 F.2d 687 certiorari granted 58 S. Ct. 760, 303 U.S. 82 L. Ed. 1092;
1. ADMINISTRATIVE LAW; CIVIL SERVICE ACT; REMOVAL OR See also Weedin v. Tayokichi Yamada 4 F. (2d) 455). Such resolution would
SUSPENSION OF CIVIL SERVICE OFFICER MUST BE FOR CAUSE; not lose its value as a precedent just because the disposition of the case was
"FOR CAUSE" CONSTRUED. — The canon for the removal or also made on some other ground.
suspension of a civil service officer or employee is that it must be FOR
CAUSE. That means "a guarantee of both procedural and substantive due
5. ADMINISTRATIVE LAW; EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 127;
process. Basically, procedural due process would require that suspension or
SEPARATION FROM OFFICE; RIGHT TO BE INFORMED OF
dismissal come only after notice and hearing. Substantive due process
GROUND OF SEPARATION UNDER EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 17,
would require that suspension or dismissal be 'for cause'.
DISPENSED WITH. — The right granted by EO 17 to an employee to be
informed of the ground for his separation must be deemed to have been
2. ID.; ID.; ID.; GUARANTEE ENSHRINED IN THE CONSTITUTION. revoked by the repealing clause of EO 127 (Section 67) providing that "all
— The guarantee of removal FOR CAUSE is enshrined in Article IX-B, laws, ordinances or parts thereof, which are inconsistent with this Executive
Section 2(3) of the 1987 Constitution, which states that "No officer or Order, are hereby repealed and modified accordingly."
employee of the civil service shall be removed or suspended except FOR
CAUSE provided by law."
6. ID.; CIVIL SERVICE ACT; REMOVAL FROM CAREER SERVICE;
TYPES OF REORGANIZATION. — The standards laid down are the
3. REMEDIAL LAW; SUPREME COURT; JUDGMENT; OBITER "traditional" criteria for removal of employees from the career service, e.g.
DICTUM, DEFINED. — An obiter dictum or dictum has been defined as a valid cause, due notice and hearing, abolition of, or redundancy of
offices. Proclamation No. 3, on the other hand, effectuates the "progressive" SARMIENTO, J p:
type of reorganization dictated by the exigencies of the historical and
political upheaval at the time. The "traditional" type is limited in scope. It is The Court writes finis to this controversy that has raged bitterly for the past
concerned with the individual approach where the particular employee several months. It does so out of a legitimate presentiment of more suits
involved is charged administratively and where the requisites of notice and reaching it as a consequence of the government reorganization and the
hearing have to be observed. The "progressive" kind of reorganization, on instability it has wrought on the performance and efficiency of the
the other hand, is the collective way. It is wider in scope, and is the bureaucracy. The Court is apprehensive that unless the final word is given
reorganization contemplated under Section 16. and the ground rules are settled, the issue will fester, and likely foment a
constitutional crisis for the nation, itself beset with grave and serious
7. ID.; ID.; ID.; RIGHTS AVAILABLE TO A REORGANIZED problems.Cdpr
EMPLOYEE. — A reorganized employee is not without rights. His right
lies in his past services, the entitlement to which must be provided for by The facts are not in dispute.
law. EO 127 provides for the same in its Section 59, and so does SECTION
16 when the latter specified that career civil service employees separated On March 25, 1986, President Corazon Aquino promulgated Proclamation
from the service not for cause: "shall be entitled to appropriate separation No. 3, "DECLARING A NATIONAL POLICY TO IMPLEMENT THE
pay and to retirement and other benefits accruing to them under the laws of REFORMS MANDATED BY THE PEOPLE, PROTECTING THEIR
general application in force at the time of their separation. In lieu thereof, at BASIC RIGHTS, ADOPTING A PROVISIONAL CONSTITUTION, AND
the option of the employees, they may be considered for employment in the PROVIDING FOR AN ORDERLY TRANSITION TO A GOVERNMENT
Government or in any of its subdivisions, instrumentalities, or agencies, UNDER A NEW CONSTITUTION. Among other things, Proclamation No.
including government-owned or controlled corporations and their 3 provided:
subsidiaries. This provision also applies to career officers whose
resignation, tendered in line with the existing policy, has been accepted."
SECTION 1. . . .
8. ID.; ID.; RIGHT TO AN OFFICE OR EMPLOYMENT WITH
GOVERNMENT, NOT A VESTED RIGHT. — The right to an office or to The President shall give priority to measures to achieve
employment with government or any of its agencies is not a vested property the mandate of the people to:
right, and removal therefrom will not support the question of due process"
(Yantsin v. Aberdeen, 54 Wash 2d 787, 345 P 2d 178). A civil service (a) Completely reorganize the government, eradicate
employee does not have a constitutionally protected right to his position, unjust and oppressive structures, and all iniquitous
which position is in the nature of a public office, political in character and vestiges of the previous regime; 1
held by way of grant or privilege extended by government; generally he has
been held to have no property right or vested interest to which due process Pursuant thereto, it was also provided:
guaranties extend (See Taylor v. Beckham 178 U. S. 548, 44 L Ed. 1187;
Angilly v. US (CA2 NY) 199 F 2d 642; People ex. rel. Baker v. Wilson, 39 SECTION 1. In the reorganization of the government,
III App 2d 443, 189 NE 2d 1; Kelliheller v. NY State Civil Service Com., 21 priority shall be given to measures to promote
Misc 2d 1034, 194 NYS 2d 89). economy, efficiency, and the eradication of graft and
corruption.

DECISION
SECTION 2. All elective and appointive officials and the ongoing government reorganization had generated, and prescribed as
employees under the 1973 Constitution shall continue "grounds for the separation/replacement of personnel," the following:
in office until otherwise provided by proclamation or
executive order or upon the appointment and SECTION 3. The following shall be the grounds for separation/replacement
qualification of the successors, if such is made within a of personnel:
period of one year from February 25, 1986.
1) Existence of a case for summary dismissal pursuant
SECTION 3. Any public officer or employee separated to Section 40 of the Civil Service Law; cdphil
from the service as a result of the organization effected
under this Proclamation shall, if entitled under the laws 2) Existence of a probable cause for violation of the
then in force, receive the retirement and other benefits Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act as determined by
accruing thereunder. the Ministry Head concerned;

SECTION 4. The records, equipment, buildings, 3) Gross incompetence or inefficiency in the discharge
facilities and other properties of all government offices of functions;
shall be carefully preserved. In case any office or body
is abolished or reorganized pursuant to this
Proclamation, its funds and properties shall be 4) Misuse of public office for partisan political
transferred to the office or body to which its powers, purposes; 5) Any other analogous ground showing that
functions and responsibilities substantially pertain. 2 the incumbent is unfit to remain in the service or his
separation/replacement is in the interest of the
service. 8
Actually, the reorganization process started as early as February 25, 1986,
when the President, in her first act in office, called upon "all appointive
public officials to submit their courtesy resignation(s) beginning with the On January 30, 1987, the President promulgated Executive Order No. 127,
members of the Supreme Court." 3 Later on, she abolished the Batasang "REORGANIZING THE MINISTRY OF FINANCE". 9 Among other
Pambansa 4 and the positions of Prime Minister and Cabinet 5 under offices, Executive Order No. 127provided for the reorganization of the
the 1973 Constitution. Bureau of Customs 10 and prescribed a new staffing pattern therefor.

Since then, the President has issued a number of executive orders and Three days later, on February 2, 1987, 11 the Filipino people adopted
directives reorganizing various other government offices, a number of the new Constitution.
which, with respect to elected local officials, has been challenged in this
Court, 6 and two of which, with respect to appointed functionaries, have On January 6, 1988, incumbent Commissioner of Customs Salvador Mison
likewise been questioned herein. 7 issued a Memorandum, in the nature of "Guidelines on the Implementation
of Reorganization Executive Orders," 12 prescribing the procedure in
On May 28, 1986, the President enacted Executive Order No. 17, personnel placement. It also provided:
"PRESCRIBING RULES AND REGULATIONS FOR THE
IMPLEMENTATION OF SECTION 2, ARTICLE III OF THE FREEDOM 1. By February 28, 1988, all employees covered by
CONSTITUTION." Executive Order No. 17 recognized the "unnecessary Executive Order 127 and the grace period extended to
anxiety and demoralization among the deserving officials and employees"
the Bureau of Customs by the President of the
Philippines on reorganization shall be:
In the meantime, your name will be included in the
a) informed of their re-appointment, consolidated list compiled by the Civil Service
or Commission so that you may be given priority for
future employment with the Government as the need
b) offered another position in the arises.
same department or agency, or
Sincerely
c) informed of their termination. 13 yours,

On the same date, Commissioner Mison constituted a Reorganization (Sgd)


Appeals Board charged with adjudicating appeals from removals under the SALVADOR M.
above Memorandum. 14 On January 26, 1988, Commissioner Mison MISON
addressed several notices to various Customs officials, in the tenor as
follows: Commissi
oner 15
Sir:
As far as the records will yield, the following were recipients of these
Please be informed that the Bureau is now in the notices:
process of implementing the Reorganization Program
under Executive Order No. 127. 1. CESAR DARIO 30. LEONCIA CATRE

Pursuant to Section 59 of the same Executive Order, all 2. VICENTE FERIA, JR. 31. ROBERTO ABADA
officers and employees of the Department of Finance,
or the Bureau of Customs in particular, shall continue to 3. ADOLFO CASARENO 32. ABACA SISINIO T.
perform their respective duties and responsibilities in a
hold-over capacity, and that those incumbents whose 4. PACIFICO LAGLEVA 33. ABAD, ROGELIO C.
positions are not carried in the new reorganization
pattern, or who are not re-appointed, shall be deemed
separated from the service. LibLex 5. JULIAN C. ESPIRITU 34. ABADIANO, JOSE P.

In this connection, we regret to inform you that your 6. DENNIS A. AZARRAGA 35. ABCEDE, NEMECIO C.
services are hereby terminated as of February 28, 1988.
Subject to the normal clearances, you may receive the 7. RENATO DE JESUS 36. ABIOG, ELY F.
retirement benefits to which you may be entitled under
existing laws, rules and regulations. 8. NICASIO C. GAMBOA 37. ABLAZA, AURORA M.
9. CORAZON RALLOS NIEVES 38. AGBAYANI, NELSON I. 27. ROSARIO DAVID 56. ARCANGEL, AGUSTIN S., JR.

10. FELICITACION R. GELUZ 39. AGRES, ANICETO. 28. RODOLFO AFUANG 58. ARREZA, ARTEMIO M., JR.

11. LEODEGARIO H. FLORESCA 40. AGUILAR, FLOR 29. LORENZO CATRE 59. ARROJO, ANTONIO P.

12. SUBAER PACASUM 41. AGUILUCHO, MA. TERESA R. 60. ARVISU, ALEXANDER S. 107. DE GUZMAN,
ANTONIO A.
13. ZENAIDA LANARIA 42. AGUSTIN, BONIFACIO T.
61. ASCAÑO, ANTONIO T. 108. DE GUZMAN, RENATO E.
14. JOSE B. ORTIZ 43. ALANO, ALEX P.
62. ASLAHON, JULAHON P. 109. GAN, ALBERTO R.
15. GLICERIO R. DOLAR 44. ALBA, MAXIMO F. JR.
63. ASUNCION, VICTOR. 110. DELA CRUZ, FRANCISCO
16. CORNELIO NAPA 45. ALBANO ROBERT B. C.

17. PABLO B. SANTOS 46. ALCANTARA, JOSE G. 64. ATANGAN, LORNA S. 111. DE LA PEÑA, LEONARDO

18. FERMIN RODRIGUEZ 47. ALMARIO, RODOLFO F. 65. ATIENZA, ALEXANDER. 112. DEL CAMPO, ORLANDO

19. DALISAY BAUTISTA 48. ALVEZ, ROMUALDO R. 66. BACAL, URSULINO C. 113. DEL RIO, MAMERTO P.,
JR.
20. LEONARDO JOSE 49. AMISTAD, RUDY M.
67. BAÑAGA, MARLOWE Z. 114. DE MESA,
21. ALBERTO LONTOK 50. AMOS, FRANCIS F. WILHELMINA T.

22. PORFIRIO TABINO 51. ANDRES, RODRIGO V. 68. BANTA, ALBERTO T. 115. DIMAKUTA, SALIC L.

23. JOSE BARREDO 52. ANGELES, RICARDO S. 69. BARROS, VICTOR C. 116. DIZON, FELICITAS A.

24. ROBERTO ARNALDO 53. ANOLIN, MILAGROS H. 70. BARTOLOME, FELIPE A. 117. DOCTOR, HEIDY M.

25. ESTER TAN 54. AQUINO, PASCASIO E. L. 71. BAYSAC, REYNALDO S. 118. DOMINGO, NICANOR J.

26. PEDRO BAKAL 55. ARABE, MELINDA M. 72. BELENO, ANTONIO B. 119. DOMINGO, PERFECTO V.,
JR.
73. BERNARDO, ROMEO D. 120. DUAY, JUANA G. 89. CATURLA, MANUEL B. 136. GAGALANG, RENATO V.

74. BERNAS, MARCIANO S. 121. DYSANGCO, RENATO F. 90. CENIZAL, JOSEFINA F. 137. GALANG, EDGARDO R.

75. BOHOL, AUXILIADOR G. 122. EDILLOR, ALFREDO P. 91. CINCO, LUISITO 138. GAMBOA, ANTONIO C.

76. BRAVO, VICTOR M. 123. ELEVAZO, LEONARDO A. 92. CONDE, JOSE C., JR. 139. GAN, ALBERTO R.

77. BULEG, BALILIS R. 124. ESCUYOS, MANUEL M., JR. 93. CORCUERA, FIDEL S. 140. GARCIA, GILBERT M.

78. CALNEA, MERCEDES M. 125. ESMERIA, ANTONIO E. 94. CORNETA, VICENTE S. 141. GARCIA, EDNA V.

79. CALVO, HONESTO G. 126. ESPALDON, MA. LOURDES 95. CORONADO, RICARDO S. 142. GARCIA, JUAN L.
H.
98. CRUZ, EDUARDO S. 143. GAVIOLA, LILIAN V.
80. CAMACHO, CARLOS V. 127. ESPINA, FRANCO A.
97. CRUZ, EDILBERTO A 144. GEMPARO, SEGUNDINA G.
81. CAMPOS, RODOLFO C. 128. ESTURCO, RODOLFO C.
98. CRUZ, EFIGENIA B. 145. GOBENCIONG, FLORDELIZ
82. CAPULONG, RODRIGO G. 129. EVANGELINO, B.
FERMIN I.
99. CRUZADO, MARCIAL C. 146. GRATE, FREDERICK R.
83. CARINGAL, GRACIA Z. 130. FELIX, ERNESTO G.
100. CUSTUDIO, RODOLFO M. 147. GREGORIO, LAURO
84. CARLOS, LORENZO B. 131. FERNANDEZ, ANDREW P.
M.
101. DABON, NORMA M. 148. GUARTICO, AMMON H.
85. CARRANTO, FIDEL U. 132. FERRAREN, ANTONIO C.
102. DALINDIN, EDNA MAE D. 149. GUIANG, MYRNA N.
86. CARUNGCONG, ALFREDO M. 133. FERRERA,
WENCESLAO A. 103. DANDAL, EDEN F. 150. GUINTO, DELFIN C.

87. CASTRO, PATRICIA J. 134. FRANCISCO, PELAGIO S., 104. DATUHARON, SATA A. 151. HERNANDEZ, LUCAS A.
JR.
105. DAZO, GODOFREDO L. 152. HONRALES, LORETO N.
88. CATELO, ROGELIO B. 135. FUENTES, RUDY L.
106. DE CASTRO, LEOPAPA 153. HUERTO, LEOPOLDO H. 163. KAINDOY, PASCUAL B., JR. 215. MORALES, NESTOR
P.
154. HULAR, LANNYROSS E. 201. MATUGAS, ERNESTO
T. 169. KOH, NANIE G. 216. MORALES, SHIRLEY S.

155. IBAÑEZ, ESTER C. 202. MATUGAS, FRANCISCO T. 170. LABILLES, ERNESTO S. 217. MUNAR, JUANITA L.

156. ILAGAN, HONORATO C. 203. MAYUGA, PORTIA E. 171. LABRADOR, WILFREDO M. 213. MUÑOZ, VICENTE
R.
157. INFANTE, REYNALDO C. 204. MEDINA, NESTOR M.
172. LAGA, BIENVENIDO M. 219. MURILLO, MANUEL M.
158. ISAIS, RAY C. 205. MEDINA, ROLANDO S.
173. LAGMAN, EVANGELINE G. 220. NACION, PEDRO R.
159. ISMAEL, HADJI AKRAM B. 206. MENDAVIA
AVELINO I. 174. LAMPONG, WILFREDO G. 221. NAGAL, HENRY N.

160. JANOLO, VIRGILIO M. 207. MENDOZA, 175. LANDICHO, RESTITUTO A. 222: NAVARRO, HENRY
POTENCIANO G. L.

161. JAVIER, AMADOR L. 208. MIL, RAY M. 176. LAPITAN, CAMILO M. 223. NEJAL, FREDRICK E.

162. JAVIER, ROBERTO S. 209. MIRAVALLES, 177. LAURENTE, REYNALDO A. 224. NICOLAS,
ANASTACIA L. REYNALDO S.

163. JAVIER, WILLIAM R. 210. MONFORTE, EUGENIO, 178. LICARTE, EVARISTO R. 225. NIEVES, RUFINO A.
JR. G.
179. LIPIO, VICTOR O. 226. OLAIVAR, SEBASTIAN T.
164. JOVEN, MEMIA A. 211. MONTANO, ERNESTO F.
180. LITTAUA, FRANKLIN Z. 227. OLEGARIO, LEO Q.
165. JULIAN, REYNALDO V. 212. MONTERO, JUAN M. III
181. LOPEZ, MELENCIO L. 228. ORTEGA ARLENE R.
166. JUMAMOY, ABUNDIO A. 213. MORALDE,
ESMERALDO B., JR. 182. LUMBA OLIVIA R. 229. ORTEGA, JESUS R.

167. JUMAQUIAO, DOMINGO F. 214. MORALES, 183. MACAISA BENITO T. 230. OSORIO, ABNER S.
CONCHITA D.L.
184. MACAISA ERLINDA C. 231. PAPIO, FLORENTINO T. 200. MATIBAG, ANGELINA G. 247. RARAS, ANTONIO A.
II
248. RAVAL, VIOLETA V. 280. TOLENTINO, BENIGNO A.
135. MAGAT, ELPIDIO 232. PASCUA, ARNULFO A.
249. RAZAL, BETTY R. 281. TURINGAN, ENRICO T., JR.
136. MAGLAYA, FERNANDO P. 233. PASTOR, ROSARIO
250. REGALA, PONCE F. 282. UMPA, ALI A.
137. MALIBIRAN, ALFREDO C. 234. PELAYO, ROSARIO
L. 251. REYES, LIBERATO R. 283. VALIC, LUCIO E.

138. MALIBIRAN, ROSITA D. 235. PEÑA, AIDA C. 252. REYES, MANUEL E. 284. VASQUEZ, NICANOR B.

189. MALIJAN, LAZARO V. 236. PEREZ, ESPERIDION B. 258. REYES, NORMA Z. 285. VELARDE, EDGARDO C.

190. MALLI, JAVIER M. 237. PEREZ, JESUS BAYANI M. 254. REYES, TELESFORO F. 286. VERA, AVELINO A.

191. MANAHAN, RAMON S. 233. PEREZ, ISIDRO A. 255. RIVERA, ROSITA L. 287. VERAME, OSCAR E.

192. MANUEL, ELPIDIO R. 239. PRUDENCIADO, 256. ROCES, ROBERTO V. 288. VIADO, LILLIAN T.
EULOGIA S.
257. ROQUE, TERESITA S. 289. VIERNES, NAPOLEON K.
193. MARAVILLIA, GIL B. 240. PUNZALAN, LAMBERTO
N. 258. ROSANES, MARILOU M. 290. VILLALON, DENNIS A.

194. MARCELO, GIL C. 241. PURA, ARNOLD T. 259. ROSETE, ADAN I. 291. VILLAR, LUZ L.

195. MARIÑAS, RODOLFO V. 242. QUINONES, EDGARDO 260. RUANTO, REY CRISTO C., JR. 292. VILLALUZ,
I. EMELITO V.

196. MAROKET, JESUS C. 243. QUINTOS, AMADEO C., JR. 261. SABLADA, PASCASIO G. 293. ZATA, ANGEL A, JR.

197. MARTIN, NEMENCIO A. 244. QUIRAY, NICOLAS C. 262. SALAZAR, SILVERIA S. 294. ACHARON, CRISTETO

198. MARTINEZ, ROMEO M. 245. RAMIREZ, ROBERTO P. 263. SALAZAR, VICTORIA A. 295. ALBA, RENATO B.

199. MARTINEZ, ROSELINA M. 246. RANADA, RODRIGO 264. SALIMBACOD, PERLITA C. 296. AMON, JULITA C.
C.
265. SALMINGO, LOURDES M. 297. AUSTRIA, ERNESTO Jose B. Ortiz, Ms. Gliceria R. Dolar, Ms. Cornelia Napa, Pablo B. Santos,
C. Fermin Rodriguez, Ms. Dalisay Bautista, Messrs. Leonardo Jose, Alberto
Lontok, Porfirio Tabino, Jose Barredo, Roberto Arnaldo, Ms. Ester Tan,
266. SANTIAGO, EMELITA B. 293. CALO, RAYMUNDO M. Messrs. Pedro Bakal, Rosario David, Rodolfo Afuang, Lorenzo Catre, Ms.
Leoncia Catre, and Roberto Abada, are the petitioners in G.R. No. 82023;
267. SATINA, PORFIRIO C. 299. CENTENO, BENJAMIN R. the last 279 16 individuals mentioned are the private respondents in G.R.
No. 85310. prcd
268. SEKITO, COSME B., JR. 300. DONATO, ESTELITA P.
As far as the records will likewise reveal, 1 7 a total of 394 officials and
employees of the Bureau of Customs were given individual notices of
269. SIMON, RAMON P. 301. DONATO, FELIPE S. separation. A number supposedly sought reinstatement with the
Reorganization Appeals Board while others went to the Civil Service
270. SINGSON, MELECIO C. 302. FLORES, PEDRITO S. Commission. The first thirty one mentioned above came directly to this
Court.
271. SORIANO, ANGELO L. 303. GALAROSA, RENATO
On June 30, 1988, the Civil Service Commission promulgated its ruling
272. SORIANO, MAGDALENA R. 304. MALAWI, MAUYAG ordering the reinstatement of the 279 employees, the 279 private
respondents in G.R. No. 85310, the dispositive portion of which reads as
273. SUMULONG, ISIDORO L., JR. 305. MONTENEGRO, follows:
FRANCISCO M.
WHEREFORE, it is hereby ordered that:
274. SUNICO, ABELARDO T. 306. OMEGA, PETRONILO T.
1. Appellants be immediately reappointed to positions
275. TABIJE, EMMA B. 307. SANTOS, GUILLERMO F. of comparable or equivalent rank in the Bureau of
Customs without loss of seniority rights;
276. TAN, RUDY GOROSPE 308. TEMPLO, CELSO
2. Appellants be paid their back salaries reckoned from
the dates of their illegal termination based on the rates
277. TAN, ESTER S. 309. VALDERAMA, JAIME B.
under the approved new staffing pattern but not lower
than their former salaries.
273. TAN, JULITA S. 310. VALDEZ, NORA M.
This action of the Commission should not, however, be
279. TECSON, BEATRIZ B. interpreted as an exoneration of the appellants from any
accusation of wrongdoing and, therefore, their
Cesar Dario is the petitioner in G.R. No. 81954; Vicente Feria, Jr., is the reappointments are without prejudice to:
petitioner in G.R. No. 81967; Messrs. Adolfo Caserano, Pacifico Lagleva,
Julian C. Espiritu, Dennis A. Azarraga, Renato de Jesus, Nicasio C. 1. Proceeding with investigation of appellants with
Gamboa, Mesdames Corazon Rallos Nieves and Felicitacion R. Geluz, pending administrative cases, and where investigations
Messrs. Leodegario H. Floresca, Subaer Pacasum, Ms. Zenaida Lanaria, Mr.
have been finished, to promptly render the appropriate 1. Proceeding with investigation of appellants with
decisions; cdrep pending administrative cases, if any, and where
investigations have been finished, to promptly, render
2. The filing of appropriate administrative complaints the appropriate decisions; and
against appellants with derogatory reports or
information if evidence so warrants. 2. The filing of appropriate administrative complaints
against appellant with derogatory reports or
information, if any, and if evidence so warrants.

SO ORDERED. 18 SO ORDERED. 20

On July 15, 1988, Commissioner Mison, represented by the Solicitor On January 6, 1989, Commissioner Mison challenged the Civil Service
General, filed a motion for reconsideration. Acting on the motion, the Civil Commission's Resolution in this Court; his petition has been docketed
Service Commission, on September 20, 1988, denied reconsideration. 19 herein as G.R. No. 86241. The employees ordered to be reinstated are Senen
Dimaguila, Romeo Arabe, Bernardo Quintong, Gregorio Reyes, and
On October 20, 1988, Commissioner Mison instituted certiorari proceedings Romulo Badillo. 21
with this Court, docketed, as above-stated, as G.R. No. 85310 of this Court.
On June 10, 1988, Republic Act No. 6656, "AN ACT TO PROTECT THE
On November 16, 1988, the Civil Service Commission further disposed the SECURITY OF TENURE OF CIVIL SERVICE OFFICERS AND
appeal (from the resolution of the Reorganization Appeals Board) of five EMPLOYEES IN THE IMPLEMENTATION OF GOVERNMENT
more employees, holding as follows: REORGANIZATION," 22 was signed into law. Under Section 7, thereof:

WHEREFORE, it is hereby ordered that: Sec. 9. All officers and employees who are found by the
Civil Service Commission to have been separated in
violation of the provisions of this Act, shall be ordered
1. Appellants be immediately reappointed to positions reinstated or reappointed as the case may be without
of comparable or equivalent rank in the Bureau of loss of seniority and shall be entitled to full pay for the
Customs without loss of seniority rights; and period of separation. Unless also separated for cause, all
officers and employees, including casuals and
2. Appellants be paid their back salaries to be reckoned temporary employees, who have been separated
from the date of their illegal termination based on the pursuant to reorganization shall, if entitled thereto, be
rates under the approved new staffing pattern but not paid the appropriate separation pay and retirement and
lower than their former salaries. other benefits under existing laws within ninety (90)
days from the date of the effectivity of their separation
This action of the Commission should not, however, be or from the date of the receipt of the resolution of their
interpreted as an exoneration of the herein appellants appeals as the case may be: Provided, That application
from any accusation of any wrongdoing and therefore, for clearance has been filed and no action thereon has
their reappointments are without prejudice to: been made by the corresponding department or agency.
Those who are not entitled to said benefits shall be paid
a separation gratuity in the amount equivalent to one (1) The Court understands that the parties are agreed on the validity of a
month salary for every year of service. Such separation reorganization per se, the only question being, as shall be later seen: What is
pay and retirement benefits shall have priority of the nature and extent of this government reorganization?
payment out of the savings of the department or agency
concerned. 23 The Court disregards the questions raised as to procedure, failure to exhaust
administrative remedies, the standing of certain parties to sue, 25 and other
On June 23, 1988, Benedicto Amasa and William Dionisio, customs technical objections, for two reasons, "[b]ecause of the demands of public
examiners appointed by Commissioner Mison pursuant to the ostensible interest, including the need for stability in the public service," 26 and
reorganization subject of this controversy, petitioned the Court to contest because of the serious implications of these cases on the administration of
the validity of the statute. The petition is docketed as G.R. No. 83737. the Philippine civil service and the rights of public servants.

On October 21, 1988, thirty-five more Customs officials whom the Civil The urgings in G.R. Nos. 85335 and 85310, that the Civil Service
Service Commission had ordered reinstated by its June 30, 1988 Resolution Commission's Resolution dated June 30, 1988 had attained a character of
filed their own petition to compel the Commissioner of Customs to comply finality for failure of Commissioner Mison to apply for judicial review or
with the said Resolution. The petition is docketed as G.R. No. 85335. llcd ask for reconsideration seasonably under Presidential Decree No. 807, 27 or
under Republic Act No. 6656, 28 or under the Constitution, 29are likewise
On November 29, 1988, we resolved to consolidate all seven petitions. rejected. The records show that the Bureau of Customs had until July 15,
1988 to ask for reconsideration or come to this Court pursuant to Section 39
On the same date, we resolved to set the matter for hearing on January 12, ofPresidential Decree No. 807. The records likewise show that the Solicitor
1989. At the said hearing, the parties, represented by their counsels (a) General filed a motion for reconsideration on July 15, 1988. 30 The Civil
retired Justice Ruperto Martin; (b) retired Justice Lino Patajo; (c) former Service Commission issued its Resolution denying reconsideration on
Dean Froilan Bacungan; (d) Atty. Lester Escobar; (e) Atty. Faustino Tugade; September 20, 1988; a copy of this Resolution was received by the Bureau
and (f) Atty. Alexander Padilla, presented their arguments. Solicitor General on September 23, 1988. 31 Hence the Bureau had until October 23, 1988 to
Francisco Chavez argued on behalf of the Commissioner of Customs elevate the matter on certiorari to this Court. 32 Since the Bureau's petition
(except in G.R. 85335, in which he represented the Bureau of Customs and was filed on October 20, 1988, it was filed on time.
the Civil Service Commission). Former Senator Ambrosio Padilla also
appeared and argued as amicus curiae. Thereafter, we resolved to require We reject, finally, contentions that the Bureau's petition (in G.R. 85310)
the parties to submit their respective memoranda which they did in due raises no jurisdictional questions, and is therefore bereft of any basis as a
time. petition for certiorari under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court. 33 We find that
the questions raised in Commissioner Mison's petition (in G.R. 85310) are,
There is no question that the administration may validly carry out a indeed, proper for certiorari, if by 'jurisdictional questions" we mean
government reorganization — insofar as these cases are concerned, the questions having to do with "an indifferent disregard of the law,
reorganization of the Bureau of Customs — by mandate not only of arbitrariness and caprice, or omission to weigh pertinent considerations, a
the Provisional Constitution, supra, but also of the various Executive decision arrived at without rational deliberation," 34 as distinguished from
Orders decreed by the Chief Executive in her capacity as sole lawmaking questions that require "digging into the merits and unearthing errors of
authority under the 1986-1987 revolutionary government. It should also be judgment" 35 which is the office, on the other hand, of review under Rule
noted that under the present Constitution, there is a recognition, albeit 45 of the said Rules. What cannot be denied is the fact that the act of the
implied, that a government reorganization may be legitimately undertaken, Civil Service Commission of reinstating hundreds of Customs employees
subject to certain conditions. 24 Commissioner Mison had separated, has implications not only on the entire
reorganization process decreed no less than by the Provisional Constitution, to the Supreme Court on certiorari," 38 which, as Aratuc tells us,
but on the Philippine bureaucracy in general; these implications are of such "technically connotes something less than saying that the same 'shall be
a magnitude that it cannot be said that — assuming that the Civil Service subject to review by the Supreme Court,'" 39 which in turn suggests an
Commission erred — the Commission committed a plain "error of appeal by petition for review under Rule 45. Therefore, our jurisdiction over
judgment" that Aratuc says cannot be corrected by the extraordinary remedy cases emanating from the Civil Service Commission is limited to
of certiorari or any special civil action. We reaffirm the teaching of Aratuc complaints of lack or excess of jurisdiction or grave abuse of discretion
— as regards recourse to this Court with respect to rulings of the Civil tantamount to lack or excess of jurisdiction, complaints that justify
Service Commission — which is that judgments of the Commission may be certiorari under Rule 65. cdtai
brought to the Supreme Court through certiorari alone, under Rule 65 of the
Rules of Court. While Republic Act No. 6656 states that judgments of the Commission are
"final and executory" 40 and hence, unappealable, under Rule 65, certiorari
In Aratuc, we declared: precisely lies in the absence of an appeal. 41

It is once evident from these constitutional and statutory modifications that Accordingly, we accept Commissioner Mison's petition (G.R. No. 85310)
there is a definite tendency to enhance and invigorate the role of the which clearly charges the Civil Service Commission with grave abuse of
Commission on Elections as the independent constitutional body charged discretion, a proper subject of certiorari, although it may not have so stated
with the safeguarding of free, peaceful and honest elections. The framers of in explicit terms.
the new Constitution must be presumed to have definite knowledge of what
it means to make the decisions, orders and rulings of the Commission As to charges that the said petition has been filed out of time, we reiterate
"subject to review by the Supreme Court". And since instead of maintaining that it has been filed seasonably. It is to be stressed that the Solicitor
that provision intact, it ordained that the Commission's actuations be instead General had thirty days from September 23, 1988 (the date the Resolution,
"brought to the Supreme Court on certiorari', We cannot insist that there was dated September 20, 1988, of the Civil Service Commission, denying
no intent to change the nature of the remedy, considering that the limited reconsideration, was received) to commence the instant certiorari
scope of certiorari, compared to a review, is well known in remedial law. 36 proceedings. As we stated, under the Constitution, an aggrieved party has
thirty days within which to challenge "any decision, order, or ruling" 42 of
We observe no fundamental difference between the Commission on the Commission. To say that the period should be counted from the
Elections and the Civil Service Commission (or the Commission on Audit Solicitor's receipt of the main Resolution, dated June 30, 1988, is to say that
for that matter) in terms of the constitutional intent to leave the he should not have asked for reconsideration. But to say that is to deny him
constitutional bodies alone in the enforcement of laws relative to elections, the right to contest (by a motion for reconsideration) any ruling, other than
with respect to the former, and the civil service, with respect to the latter (or the main decision, when, precisely, the Constitution gives him such a right.
the audit of government accounts, with respect to the Commission on That is also to place him at a "no-win" situation because if he did not move
Audit). As the poll body is the "sole judge" 37 of all election cases, so is the for a reconsideration, he would have been faulted for demanding certiorari
Civil Service Commission the single arbiter of all 5 controversies pertaining too early, under the general rule that a motion for reconsideration should
to the civil service. preface a resort to a special civil action. 43 Hence, we must reckon the
thirty-day period from receipt of the order of denial. cdasia

We come to the merits of these cases.


It should also be noted that under the new Constitution, as under the 1973
Charter, "any decision, order, or ruling of each Commission may be brought G.R. Nos. 81954, 81967, 82023, and 85335:
The Case for the Employees a provision he claims the Commissioner could not have legally
invoked. He avers that he could not have been legally deemed to be an
The petitioner in G.R. No. 81954, Cesar Dario, was one of the Deputy "[incumbent] whose [position] [is] not included therein or who [is] not
Commissioners of the Bureau of Customs until his relief on orders of reappointed" 45 to justify his separation from the service. He contends
Commissioner Mison on January 26, 1988. In essence, he questions the that neither the Executive Order (under the second paragraph of the
legality of his dismissal, which he alleges was upon the authority of Section section) nor the staffing pattern proposed by the Secretary of
59 of Executive Order No. 127, supra, hereinbelow reproduced as follows: Finance 46 abolished the office of Deputy Commissioner of Customs,
but, rather, increased it to three. 47Nor can it be said, so he further
SEC. 59. New Structure and Pattern. Upon approval of maintains, that he had not been "reappointed" 48 (under the second
this Executive Order, the officers and employees of the paragraph of the section) because "[r]eappointment therein presupposes
Ministry shall, in a holdover capacity, continue to that the position to which it refers is a new one in lieu of that which has
perform their respective duties and responsibilities and been abolished or although an existing one, has absorbed that which
receive the corresponding salaries and benefits unless in has been abolished." 49 He claims, finally, that under the Provisional
the meantime they are separated from government Constitution, the power to dismiss public officials without cause ended
service pursuant to Executive Order No. 17 (1986) or on February 25, 1987, 50 and that thereafter, public officials enjoyed
Article III of the Freedom Constitution. security of tenure under the provisions of the 1987 Constitution. 51

The new position structure and staffing pattern of the Like Dario, Vicente Feria, the petitioner in G.R. No. 81967, was a Deputy
Ministry shall be approved and prescribed by the Commissioner at the Bureau until his separation directed by Commissioner
Minister within one hundred twenty (120) days from Mison. And like Dario, he claims that under the 1987 Constitution, he has
the approval of this Executive Order and the authorized acquired security of tenure and that he cannot be said to be covered by
positions created hereunder shall be filled with regular Section 59 of Executive Order No. 127, having been appointed on April 22,
appointments by him or by the President, as the case 1986 — during the effectivity of the Provisional Constitution. He adds that
may be. Those incumbents whose positions are not under Executive Order No. 39, "ENLARGING THE POWERS AND
included therein or who are not reappointed shall be FUNCTIONS OF THE COMMISSIONER OF CUSTOMS," 52 the
deemed separated from the service. Those separated Commissioner of Customs has the power "[t]o appoint all Bureau personnel,
from the service shall receive the retirement benefits to except those appointed by the President," 53 and that his position, which is
which they may be entitled under existing laws, rules that of a Presidential appointee, is beyond the control of Commissioner
and regulations. Otherwise, they shall be paid the Mison for purposes of reorganization.
equivalent of one month basic salary for every year of
service, or the equivalent nearest fraction thereof The petitioners in G.R. No. 82023, collectors and examiners in various ports
favorable to them on the basis of highest salary of the Philippines, say, on the other hand, that the purpose of reorganization
received but in no case shall such payment exceed the is to end corruption at the Bureau of Customs and that since there is no
equivalent of 12 months salary. finding that they are guilty of corruption, they cannot be validly dismissed
from the service. LLphil
No court or administrative body shall issue any writ of
preliminary injunction or restraining order to enjoin the The Case for Commissioner Mison
separation/replacement of any officer or employee
effected under this Executive Order. 44
In his comments, the Commissioner relies on this Court's resolution in Jose under Executive Order No. 39, the dismissals contemplated were "for
v. Arroyo, 54 in which the following statement appears in the last paragraph cause" while the separations now under question were "not for cause and
thereof: were a result of government reorganization decreed by Executive Order No.
127. Anent Republic Act No. 6656, he expresses doubts on the
The contention of petitioner that Executive Order No. constitutionality of the grant of retroactivity therein (as regards the
127 is violative of the provision of the 1987 reinforcement of security of tenure) since the new Constitution clearly
Constitution guaranteeing career civil service allows reorganization after its effectivity. dctai
employees security of tenure overlooks the provisions
of Section 16, Article XVIII (Transitory Provisions) G.R. Nos. 85310 and 86241
which explicitly authorize the removal of career civil
service employees "not for cause but as a result of the The Position of Commissioner Mison
reorganization pursuant to Proclamation No. 3 dated
March 25, 1986 and the reorganization following the Commissioner's twin petitions are direct challenges to three rulings of the
ratification of this Constitution." By virtue of said Civil Service Commission: (1) the Resolution, dated June 30, 1988,
provision, the reorganization of the Bureau of Customs reinstating the 265 customs employees above-stated; (2) the Resolution,
under Executive Order No. 127 may continue even after dated September 20, 1988, denying reconsideration; and (3) the Resolution,
the ratification of the Constitution, and career civil dated November 16, 1988, reinstating five employees. The Commissioner's
service employees may be separated from the service arguments are as follows:
without cause as a result of such reorganization. 55

For this reason, Mison posits, claims of violation of security of tenure are
allegedly no defense. He further states that the deadline prescribed by
the Provisional Constitution(February 25, 1987) has been superseded by 1. The ongoing government reorganization is in the nature of a
the 1987 Constitution, specifically, the transitory provisions "progressive" 60 reorganization "impelled by the need to overhaul the entire
thereof, 56 which allows a reorganization thereafter (after February 25, government bureaucracy" 61following the people power revolution of 1986;
1987) as this very Court has so declared in Jose v. Arroyo. Mison submits
that contrary to the employees' argument, Section 59 of Executive Order 2. There was faithful compliance by the Bureau of the various guidelines
No. 127 is applicable (in particular, to Dario and Feria), in the sense that issued by the President, in particular, as to deliberation, and selection of
retention in the Bureau, under the Executive Order, depends on either personnel for appointment under the new staffing pattern;
retention of the position in the new staffing pattern or reappointment of the
incumbent, and since the dismissed employees had not been reappointed, 3. The separated employees have been, under Section 59 of Executive Order
they had been considered legally separated. Moreover, Mison proffers that No. 127, on mere holdover standing, "which means that all positions are
under Section 59 incumbents are considered on holdover status, "which declared vacant;" 62
means that all those positions were considered vacant." 57 The Solicitor
General denies the applicability of Palma-Fernandez v. De la 4. Jose v. Arroyo has declared the validity of Executive Order No. 127 under
Paz 58 because that case supposedly involved a mere transfer and not a the transitory provisions of the 1987 Constitution;
separation. He rejects, finally the force and effect of Executive Order Nos.
17 and 39 for the reason that Executive Order No. 17, which was meant to
5. Republic Act No. 6656 is of doubtful constitutionality.
implement the Provisional Constitution, 59 had ceased to have force and
effect upon the ratification of the 1987 Constitution, and that,
The Ruling of the Civil Service Commission any of its subdivisions, instrumentalities, or agencies,
including government-owned or controlled corporations
The position of the Civil Service Commission is as follows: and their subsidiaries. This provision also applies to
career officers whose resignation, tendered in line with
1. Reorganizations occur where there has been a reduction in personnel or the existing policy, had been accepted. 63
redundancy of functions; there is no showing that the reorganization in
question has been carried out for either purpose — on the contrary, the The Court considers the above provision critical for two reasons: (1) It is
dismissals now disputed were carried out by mere service of notices; the only provision — insofar as it mentions removals not for cause — that
would arguably support the challenged dismissals by mere notice, and (2) It
2. The current Customs reorganization has not been made according to is the single existing law on reorganization after the ratification of the 1987
Malacañang guidelines; information on file with the Commission shows Charter, except Republic Act No. 6656, which came much later, on June 10,
that Commissioner Mison has been appointing unqualified personnel; 1988. [Nota bene: Executive Orders No. 116 (covering the Ministry of
Agriculture & Food), 117 (Ministry of Education, Culture & Sports), 119
(Health), 120 (Tourism), 123 (Social Welfare & Development), 124 (Public
3. Jose v. Arroyo, in validating Executive Order No. 127, did not Works & Highways), 125 (Transportation & Communications), 126 (Labor
countenance illegal removals; LLjur & Employment), 127 (Finance), 128 (Science & Technology), 129
(Agrarian Reform), 131 (Natural Resources), 132 (Foreign Affairs), and 133
4. Republic Act No. 6656 protects security of tenure in the course of (Trade & Industry) were all promulgated on January 30, 1987, prior to the
reorganizations. adoption of the Constitution on February 2, 1987]. 64

The Court's Ruling It is also to be observed that unlike the grants of power to effect
reorganizations under the past Constitutions, the above provision comes as a
Reorganization, Fundamental Principles of . — mere recognition of the right of the Government to reorganize its offices,
bureaus, and instrumentalities. Under Section 4, Article XVI, of the 1935
I. Constitution:

The core provision of law involved is Section 16 Article XVIII, of the 1987 Section 4. All officers and employees in the existing
Constitution. We quote: Government of the Philippine Islands shall continue in
office until the Congress shall provide otherwise, but all
officers whose appointments are by
Sec. 16. Career civil service employees separated from
this Constitution vested in the President shall vacate
the service not for cause but as a result of the
their respective office(s) upon the appointment and
reorganization pursuant to Proclamation No. 3 dated
qualification of their successors, if such appointment is
March 25, 1986 and the reorganization following the
made within a period of one year from the date of the
ratification of this Constitution shall be entitled to
inauguration of the Commonwealth of the
appropriate separation pay and to retirement and other
Philippines. 65
benefits accruing to them under the laws of general
application in force at the time of their separation. In
lieu thereof, at the option of the employees, they may Under Section 9, Article XVII, of the 1973 Charter:
be considered for employment in the Government or in
Section 9. All officials and employees in the existing "automatic"-vacancy-authority and to remove them without rhyme or
Government of the Republic of the Philippines shall reason.
continue in office until otherwise provided by law or
decreed by the incumbent President of the Philippines, As we have seen, since 1935, transition periods have been characterized by
but all officials whose appointments are by provisions for "automatic" vacancies. We take the silence of the 1987
this Constitution vested in the Prime Minister shall Constitution on this matter as a restraint upon the Government to dismiss
vacate their respective offices upon the appointment public servants at a moment's notice.
and qualification of their successors. 66
What is, indeed, apparent is the fact that if the present Charter envisioned an
The Freedom Constitution is, as earlier seen, couched in similar language: "automatic" vacancy, it should have said so in clearer terms, as its 1935,
1973, and 1986 counterparts had so stated.
SECTION 2. All elective and appointive officials and
employees under the 1973 Constitution shall continue The constitutional "lapse" means either one of two things: (1) The
in office until otherwise provided by proclamation or Constitution meant to continue the reorganization under the prior Charter
executive order or upon the appointment and (of the Revolutionary Government), in the sense that the latter provides for
qualification of their successors, if such is made within "automatic" vacancies, or (2) It meant to put a stop to those "automatic"
a period of one year from February 25, 1986. 67 vacancies. By itself, however, it is ambiguous, referring as it does to two
stages of reorganization — the first, to its conferment or authorization
Other than references to "reorganization following the ratification of this under Proclamation No. 3 (Freedom Charter) and the second, to its
Constitution," there is no provision for "automatic" vacancies under implementation on its effectivity date (February 2, 1987). But as we
the 1987 Constitution. asserted, if the intent of Section 16 of Article XVIII of the 1987
Constitution were to extend the effects of reorganization under the Freedom
Invariably, transition periods are characterized by provisions for Constitution, it should have said so in clear terms. It is illogical why it
"automatic" vacancies. They are dictated by the need to hasten the passage should talk of two phases of reorganization when it could have simply
from the old to the new Constitution free from the "fetters" of due process acknowledged the continuing effect of the first reorganization. cdll
and security of tenure. cdlex
Second, plainly the concern of Section 16 is to ensure compensation for
At this point, we must distinguish removals from separations arising from "victims" of constitutional revamps — whether under the Freedom or
abolition of office (not by virtue of the Constitution) as a result of existing Constitution — and only secondarily and impliedly, to allow
reorganization carried out by reason of economy or to remove redundancy reorganization. We turn to the records of the Constitutional Commission:
of functions. In the latter case, the Government is obliged to prove good
faith. 68 In case of removals undertaken to comply with clear and explicit INQUIRY OF MR. PADILLA
constitutional mandates, the Government is not hard put to prove anything,
plainly and simply because the Constitution allows it. On the query of Mr. Padilla whether there is a need for
a specific reference to Proclamation No. 3 and not
Evidently, the question is whether or not Section 16 of Article XVIII of merely state "result of the reorganization following the
the 1987 Constitution is a grant of a license upon the Government to ratification of this Constitution", Mr. Suarez, on behalf
remove career public officials it could have validly done under an of the Committee, replied that it is necessary, inasmuch
as there are two stages of reorganization covered by the February 2, 1987. 70 It can only mean, then, that whatever reorganization is
Section. taking place is upon the authority of the present Charter, and necessarily,
upon the mantle of its provisions and safeguards. Hence, it can not be
Mr. Padilla pointed out that since the proposals of the legitimately stated that we are merely continuing what the revolutionary
Commission on Government Reorganization have not Constitution of the Revolutionary Government had started. We are through
been implemented yet, it would be better to use the with reorganization under the Freedom Constitution — the first stage. We
phrase "reorganization before or after the ratification are on the second stage — that inferred from the provisions of Section 16 of
of the Constitution" to simplify the Section. Mr. Suarez Article XVIII of the permanent basic document. cda
instead suggested the phrase "as a result of the
reorganization effected before or after the ratification This is confirmed not only by the deliberations of the Constitutional
of the Constitution" on the understanding that the Commission, supra, but is apparent from the Charter's own words. It also
provision would apply to employees terminated because warrants our holding in Esguerraand Palma-Fernandez, in which we
of the reorganization pursuant to Proclamation No. categorically declared that after February 2, 1987, incumbent officials and
3 and even those affected by the reorganization during employees have acquired security of tenure, which is not a deterrent against
the Marcos regime. Additionally, Mr. Suarez pointed separation by reorganization under the quondam fundamental law.
out that it is also for this reason that the Committee
specified the two Constitutions — the Freedom Finally, there is the concern of the State to ensure that this reorganization is
Constitution and the 1986 [1987] Constitution. 69 no "purge" like the execrated reorganizations under martial rule. And, of
course, we also have the democratic character of the Charter itself.
Simply, the provision benefits career civil service employees separated from
the service. And the separation contemplated must be due to or the result of Commissioner Mison would have had a point, insofar as he contends that
(1) the reorganization pursuant to Proclamation No. 3 dated March 25, the reorganization is open-ended ("progressive"), had it been a
1986, (2) the reorganization from February 2, 1987, and (3) the resignations reorganization under the revolutionary authority, specifically of
of career officers tendered in line with the existing policy and which the Provisional Constitution. For then, the power to remove government
resignations have been accepted. The phrase "not for cause" is clearly and employees would have been truly wide-ranging and limitless, not only
primarily exclusionary, to exclude those career civil service employees because Proclamation No. 3 permitted it, but because of the nature of
separated "for cause." In other words, in order to be entitled to the benefits revolutionary authority itself, its totalitarian tendencies, and the monopoly
granted under Section 16 of Article XVIII of the Constitution of 1987, two of power in the men and women who wield it.
requisites, one negative and the other positive, must concur, to wit:
What must be understood, however, is that notwithstanding her immense
1. the separation must not be for cause, and revolutionary powers, the President was, nevertheless, magnanimous in her
rule. This is apparent from Executive Order No. 17, which established
2. the separation must be due to any of the three safeguards against the strong arm and ruthless propensity that accompanies
situations mentioned above. reorganizations — notwithstanding the fact that removals arising therefrom
were "not for cause," and in spite of the fact that such removals would have
been valid and unquestionable. Despite that, the Chief Executive saw, as we
said, the "unnecessary anxiety and demoralization" in the government rank
By its terms, the authority to remove public officials under the Provisional and file that reorganization was causing, and prescribed guidelines for
Constitution ended on February 25, 1987, advanced by jurisprudence to personnel action. Specifically, she said on May 28, 1986:
WHEREAS, in order to obviate unnecessary anxiety to be the authority for this argument. Evidently, if Arroyo indeed so
and demoralization among the deserving officials and ruled, Arroyo would be inconsistent with the earlier pronouncement of
employees, particularly in the career civil service, it is Esguerra and the later holding of Palma-Fernandez. The question, however,
necessary to prescribe the rules and regulations for is: Did Arroyo, in fact, extend the effects of reorganization under the
implementing the said constitutional provision to revolutionary Charter to the era of the new Constitution?
protect career civil servants whose qualifications and
performance meet the standards of service demanded There are a few points about Arroyo that have to be explained. First, the
by the New Government, and to ensure that only those opinion expressed therein that "[b]y virtue of said provision the
found corrupt, inefficient and undeserving are separated reorganization of the Bureau of Customs under Executive Order No.
from the government service; 71 127 may continue even after the ratification of this constitution and career
civil service employees may be separated from the service without cause as
Noteworthy is the injunction embodied in the Executive Order that a result of such reorganization" 74 is in the nature of an obiter dictum. We
dismissals should be made on the basis of findings of inefficiency, graft, and dismissed Jose's petition 75 primarily because it was "clearly premature,
unfitness to render public service. ** speculative, and purely anticipatory, based merely on newspaper reports
which do not show any direct or threatened injury," 76 it appearing that the
The President's Memorandum of October 14, 1987 should furthermore be reorganization of the Bureau of Customs had not been, then, set in motion.
considered. We quote, in part: Jose therefore had no cause for complaint, which was enough basis to
dismiss the petition. The remark anent separation "without cause" was
Further to the Memorandum dated October 2, 1987 on therefore not necessary for the disposition of the case. In Morales v.
the same subject, I have ordered that there will be no Paredes, 77 it was held that an obiter dictum "lacks the force of an
further lay-offs this year of personnel as a result of the adjudication and should not ordinarily be regarded as such." 78
government reorganization. 72
Secondly, Arroyo is an unsigned resolution while Palma-Fernandez is a full-
Assuming, then, that this reorganization allows removals "not for cause" in blown decision, although both are en banc cases. While a resolution of the
a manner that would have been permissible in a revolutionary setting as Court is no less forceful than a decision, the latter has a special weight.
Commissioner Mison so purports, it would seem that the Commissioner
would have been powerless, in any event, to order dismissals at the Thirdly, Palma-Fernandez v. De la Paz comes as a later doctrine. (Jose v.
Customs Bureau left and right. Hence, even if we accepted his Arroyo was promulgated on August 11, 1987 while Palma-Fernandez was
"progressive" reorganization theory, he would still have to come to terms decided on August 31, 1987.) It is well-established that a later judgment
with the Chief Executive's subsequent directives moderating the supersedes a prior one in case of an inconsistency. prLL
revolutionary authority's plenary power to separate government officials and
employees. LLpr As we have suggested, the transitory provisions of the 1987
Constitution allude to two stages of the reorganization, the first stage being
Reorganization under the 1987 Constitution, Nature, Extent, and the reorganization under Proclamation No. 3 — which had already been
Limitations of ; Jose v. Arroyo, clarified. — consummated — the second stage being that adverted to in the transitory
provisions themselves — which is underway. Hence, when we spoke,
The controversy seems to be that we have, ourselves, supposedly extended in Arroyo, of reorganization after the effectivity of the new Constitution, we
the effects of government reorganization under the Provisional referred to the second stage of the reorganization. Accordingly, we cannot
Constitution to the regime of the1987 Constitution. Jose v. Arroyo 73 is said
be said to have carried over reorganization under the Freedom "abolition" as where there is merely a change of nomenclature of
Constitution to its 1987 counterpart. positions, 82 or where claims of economy are belied by the existence of
ample funds. 83
Finally, Arroyo is not necessarily incompatible with Palma-Fernandez (or
Esguerra). It is to be stressed that by predisposing a reorganization to the yardstick of
good faith, we are not, as a consequence, imposing a "cause" for
As we have demonstrated, reorganization under the aegis of the 1987 restructuring. Retrenchment in the course of a reorganization in good faith
Constitution is not as stern as reorganization under the prior Charter. is still removal "not for cause," if by "cause" we refer to "grounds" or
Whereas the latter, sans the President's subsequently imposed constraints, conditions that call for disciplinary action. ***
envisioned a purgation, the same cannot be said of the reorganization
inferred under the new Constitution because, precisely, the new Good faith, as a component of a reorganization under a constitutional
Constitution seeks to usher in a democratic regime. But even if we regime, is judged from the facts of each case. However, under Republic Act
concede ex gratia argumenti that Section 16 is an exception to due process No. 6656, we are told:
and no-removal-"except for cause provided by law" principles enshrined in
the very same 1987 Constitution, 79 which may possibly justify removals
"not for cause," there is no contradiction in terms here because, while the
former Constitution left the axe to fall where it might, the present organic SEC. 2. No officer or employee in the career service
act requires that removals "not for cause" must be as a result of shall be removed except for a valid cause and after due
reorganization. As we observed, the Constitution does not provide for notice and hearing. A valid cause for removal exists
"automatic" vacancies. It must also pass the test of good faith — a test not when, pursuant to a bona fide reorganization, a position
obviously required under the revolutionary government formerly prevailing, has been abolished or rendered redundant or there is a
but a test well- established in democratic societies and in this government need to merge, divide, or consolidate positions in order
under a democratic Charter. to meet the exigencies of the service, or other lawful
causes allowed by the Civil Service Law. The existence
When, therefore, Arroyo permitted a reorganization under Executive Order of any or some of the following circumstances may be
No. 127 after the ratification of the 1987 Constitution, Arroyo permitted a considered as evidence of bad faith in the removals
reorganization provided that it is done in good faith. Otherwise, security of made as a result of reorganization, giving rise to a claim
tenure would be an insuperable impediment. 80 for reinstatement or reappointment by an aggrieved
party: (a) Where there is a significant increase in the
Reorganizations in this jurisdiction have been regarded as valid provided number of positions in the new staffing pattern of the
they are pursued in good faith. 81 As a general rule, a reorganization is department or agency concerned; (b) Where an office is
carried out in "good faith" if it is for the purpose of economy or to make abolished and another performing substantially the
bureaucracy more efficient. In that event, no dismissal (in case of a same functions is created; (c) Where incumbents are
dismissal) or separation actually occurs because the position itself ceases to replaced by those less qualified in terms of status of
exist. And in that case, security of tenure would not be a Chinese wall. Be appointment, performance and merit; (d) Where there is
that as it may, if the "abolition," which is nothing else but a separation or a reclassification of offices in the department or agency
removal, is done for political reasons or purposely to defeat security of concerned and the reclassified offices perform
tenure, or otherwise not in good faith, no valid "abolition" takes place and substantially the same functions as the original offices;
whatever "abolition" is done, is void ab initio. There is an invalid
(e) Where the removal violates the order of separation With respect to Executive Order No. 127, Commissioner Mison submits
provided in Section 3 hereof. 84 that under Section 59 thereof, "[t]hose incumbents whose positions are not
included therein or who are not reappointed shall be deemed separated from
It is in light hereof that we take up questions about Commissioner Mison's the service." He submits that because the 394 removed personnel have not
good faith, or lack of it. been "reappointed," they are considered terminated. To begin with, the
Commissioner's appointing power is subject to the provisions of Executive
Reorganization of the Bureau of Customs, Order No. 39. Under Executive Order No. 39, the Commissioner of
Customs may "appoint all Bureau personnels except those appointed by the
President." 89
Lack of Good Faith in. —
Accordingly, with respect to Deputy Commissioners Cesar Dario and
The Court finds that after February 2, 1987 no perceptible restructuring of Vicente Feria, Jr., Commissioner Mison could not have validly terminated
the Customs hierarchy — except for the change of personnel — has them, they being Presidential appointees.
occurred, which would have justified (all things being equal) the contested
dismissals. The contention that the staffing pattern at the Bureau (which
would have furnished a justification for a personnel movement) is the same Secondly, and as we have asserted, Section 59 has been rendered
staffing pattern prescribed by Section 34 of Executive Order No. inoperative according to our holding in Palma-Fernandez.
127 already prevailing when Commissioner Mison took over the Customs
helm, has not been successfully contradicted. 85 There is no showing that That Customs employees, under Section 59 of Executive Order No. 127 had
legitimate structural changes have been made — or a reorganization been on a mere holdover status cannot mean that the positions held by them
actually undertaken, for that matter — at the Bureau since Commissioner had become vacant. In Palma-Fernandez, we said in no uncertain terms:
Mison assumed office, which would have validly prompted him to hire and
fire employees. There can therefore be no actual reorganization to speak of, The argument that, on the basis of this provision,
in the sense, say, of reduction of personnel, consolidation of offices, or petitioner's term of office ended on 30 January 1987
abolition thereof by reason of economy or redundancy of functions, but a and that she continued in the performance of her duties
revamp of personnel pure and simple. LLpr merely in a hold-over capacity and could be transferred
to another position without violating any of her legal
The records indeed show that Commissioner Mison separated about 394 rights, is untenable. The occupancy of a position in a
Customs personnel but replaced them with 522 as of August 18, hold-over capacity was conceived to facilitate
1988. 86 This betrays a clear intent to "pack" the Bureau of Customs. He reorganization and would have lapsed on 25 February
did so, furthermore, in defiance of the President's directive to halt further 1987 (under the Provisional Constitution), but advanced
lay-offs as a consequence of reorganization. 87 Finally, he was aware that to February 2, 1987 when the 1987
lay-offs should observe the procedure laid down by Executive Order No. Constitution became effective (De Leon, et al., vs. Hon.
17. Benjamin B. Esquerra, et. al., G.R. No. 78059, 31
August 1987). After the said date the provisions of the
We are not, of course, striking down Executive Order No. 127 for latter on security of tenure govern. 90
repugnancy to the Constitution. While the act is valid, still and all, the
means with which it was implemented is not. 88 It should be seen, finally, that we are not barring Commissioner Mison from
carrying out a reorganization under the transitory provisions of the 1987
Executive Order No. 127, Specific Case of . —
Constitution. But such a reorganization should be subject to the criterion of about automatically. Otherwise, security of tenure may be invoked.
good faith. Moreover, it can be seen that the statute itself recognizes removals without
cause. However, it also acknowledges the possibility of the leadership using
Resume. — the artifice of reorganization to frustrate security of tenure. For this reason,
it has installed safeguards. There is nothing unconstitutional about the Act.
In resume, we restate as follows:
We recognize the injury Commissioner Mison's replacements would sustain.
1. The President could have validly removed government employees, We also commisserate with them. But our concern is the greater wrong
elected or appointed, without cause but only before the effectivity of inflicted on the dismissed employees on account of their illegal separation
the 1987 Constitution on February 2, 1987 (De Leon v. Esguerra, from the civil service.
supra; Palma-Fernandez vs. De la Paz, supra); in this connection, Section
59 (on non-reappointment of incumbents) of Executive Order No. WHEREFORE, THE RESOLUTIONS OF THE CIVIL SERVICE
127 cannot be a basis for termination; COMMISSION, DATED JUNE 30, 1988, SEPTEMBER 20, 1988,
NOVEMBER 16, 1988, INVOLVED IN G.R. NOS. 85310, 85335, AND
2. In such a case, dismissed employees shall be paid separation and 86241, AND MAY 8, 1989, INVOLVED IN G.R. NO. 85310, ARE
retirement benefits or upon their option be given reemployment AFFIRMED.
opportunities (CONST.[1987], art. XVIII, sec. 16; Rep. Act No. 6656, sec.
9); THE PETITIONS IN G.R. NOS. 81954, 81967, 82023, AND 85335 ARE
GRANTED. THE PETITIONS IN G.R. NOS. 83737, 85310 AND 86241
3. From February 2, 1987, the State does not loss the right to reorganize the ARE DISMISSED.
Government resulting in the separation of career civil service employees
[CONST.(1987),supra] provided, that such a reorganization is made in good THE COMMISSIONER OF CUSTOMS IS ORDERED TO REINSTATE
faith. (Rep. Act No. 6656, supra.) THE EMPLOYEES SEPARATED AS A RESULT OF HIS NOTICES
DATED JANUARY 26, 1988.
G.R. No. 83737
THE EMPLOYEES WHOM COMMISSIONER MISON MAY HAVE
This disposition also resolves G.R. No. 83737. As we have indicated, G.R. APPOINTED AS REPLACEMENTS ARE ORDERED TO VACATE
No. 83737 is a challenge to the validity of Republic Act No. 6656. In brief, THEIR POSTS SUBJECT TO THE PAYMENT OF WHATEVER
it is argued that the Act, insofar as it strengthens security of tenure 91 and as BENEFITS THAT MAY BE PROVIDED BY LAW.
far as it provides for a retroactive effect, 92 runs counter to the transitory
provisions of the new Constitution on removals not for cause. NO COSTS.

It can be seen that the Act, insofar as it provides for reinstatement of IT IS SO ORDERED.
employees separated without "a valid cause and after due notice and
hearing" 93 is not contrary to the transitory provisions of the new Gutierrez, Jr., Paras, Gancayco, Bidin, Cortes, Griño-
Constitution. The Court reiterates that although the Charter's transitory Aquino and Medialdea, JJ ., concur.
provisions mention separations "not for cause," separations thereunder must
nevertheless be on account of a valid reorganization and which do not come
Padilla, J ., No part, related to counsel for respondent Abaca in G.R. No.
85310.
of reorganizing NTA by an executive fiat and not by legislative action.
According to the Court, this involved neither an abolition nor transfer of
offices; the assailed action was merely reorganization under the general
FIRST DIVISION provisions of the law consisting mainly of streamlining the NTA in the
interest of simplicity, economy and efficiency. It was, therefore, an act well
[G.R. No. 152845. August 5, 2003.] within the authority of the President motivated and carried out, according to
the findings of the appellate court, in good faith, a factual assessment
accepted by the Court.
DRIANITA BAGAOISAN, FELY MADRIAGA,
SHIRLY TAGABAN, RICARDO SARANDI, As to petitioners' Motion for an En Banc Resolution of the Case, the Court
SUSAN IMPERIAL, BENJAMIN DEMDEM, reminded counsel for petitioners that the Court En Banc is not an appellate
RODOLFO DAGA, EDGARDO BACLIG, tribunal to which appeals from a Division of the Court may be taken.
GREGORIO LABAYAN, HILARIO JEREZ, and Petitioners' motion was denied.
MARIA CORAZON CUANANG, petitioners, vs.
NATIONAL TOBACCO ADMINISTRATION,
Represented by ANTONIO DE GUZMAN and SYLLABUS
PERLITA BAULA, respondents.
1. POLITICAL LAW; EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT; PRESIDENT IS
The Law Offices of Huerla Abesamis & Associates for petitioners. EXPRESSLY GRANTED CONTROL THEREOF; APPLICATION IN
CASE AT BAR. — It is important to emphasize that the questioned
Office of the Government Carporale Counsel for public respondent. Executive Orders No. 29 and No. 36 have not abolished the National
Tobacco Administration but merely mandated its reorganization through the
SYNOPSIS streamlining or reduction of its personnel. Article VII, Section 17, of the
Constitution, expressly grants the President control of all executive
President Joseph Estrada issued several Executive Orders reorganizing the departments, bureaus, agencies and offices which may justify an executive
National Tobacco Administration (NTA). In compliance therewith, the NTA action to inactivate the functions of a particular office or to carry out
prepared and adopted a new Organization Structure and Staffing Pattern reorganization measures under a broad authority of law. Section 78 of the
(OSSP). Petitioners were rank and file employees of NTA who were General Provisions of Republic Act No. 8522 (General Appropriations Act
terminated and were not considered in the OSSP. They filed a petition for of FY 1998) has decreed that the President may direct changes in the
certiorari, prohibition and mandamus before the Regional Trial Court of organization and key positions in any department, bureau or agency
Batac, Ilocos Norte to enjoin the respondents from enforcing the notice of pursuant to Article VI, Section 25, of the Constitution, which grants to the
termination addressed to the petitioners. The RTC decided in favor of Executive Department the authority to recommend the budget necessary for
petitioners and thus ordered NTA to appoint petitioners in the new OSSP. its operation. Evidently, this grant of power includes the authority to
On appeal, the Court of Appeals reversed the RTC ruling. The Supreme evaluate each and every government agency, including the determination of
Court affirmed the appellate court's decision and denied the motion for the most economical and efficient staffing pattern, under the Executive
reconsideration. Department. In the recent case of Rosa Ligaya C. Domingo, et al. vs. Hon.
Ronaldo D. Zamora, in his capacity as the Executive Secretary, et al., this
Court has had occasion to also delve on the President's power to reorganize
Petitioners, therefore, filed this motion to admit petition for en banc
the Office of the President under Section 31(2) and (3) of Executive Order
resolution of the case allegedly to address the legal and constitutional issue
No. 292 and the power to reorganize the Office of the President Proper. The
Court has there .observed: ". . . .Under Section 31(1) of EO 292, the mainly of streamlining the NTA in the interest of simplicity, economy and
President can reorganize the Office of the President Proper by abolishing, efficiency. It is an act well within the authority of President motivated and
consolidating or merging units, or by transferring functions from one unit to carried out, according to the findings of the appellate court, in good faith, a
another. In contrast, under Section 31(2) and (3) of EO 292, the President's factual assessment that this Court could only but accept. ESTAIH
power to reorganize offices outside the Office of the President Proper but
still within the Office of the President is limited to merely transferring 2. ID.; JUDICIARY; SUPREME COURT; THE COURT EN BANC IS NOT
functions or agencies from the Office of the President to Departments or AN APPELLATE TRIBUNAL TO WHICH APPEALS FROM A
Agencies, and vice versa." The provisions of Section 31, Book III, Chapter DIVISION OF THE COURT MAY BE TAKEN. — The Court En Banc is
10, of Executive Order No. 292 (Administrative Code of 1987), above- not an appellate tribunal to which appeals from a Division of the Court may
referred to, reads thusly: "SEC. 31. Continuing Authority of the President to be taken. A Division of the Court is the Supreme Court as fully and
Reorganize his Office. — The President, subject to the policy in the veritably as the Court En Banc itself and a decision of its Division is as
Executive Office and in order to achieve simplicity, economy and authoritative and final as a decision of the Court En Banc. Referrals of cases
efficiency, shall have continuing authority to reorganize the administrative from a Division to the Court En Banc do not take place as just a matter of
structure of the Office, of the President. For this purpose, he may take any routine but only on such specified grounds as the Court in its discretion may
of the following actions: "(1) Restructure the internal organization of the allow.
Office of the President Proper, including the immediate Offices, the
Presidential Special Assistants/Advisers System and the Common Staff
Support System, by abolishing, consolidating or merging units thereof or
transferring functions from one unit to another; "(2) Transfer any function DECISION
under the Office of the President to any other Department or Agency as well
as transfer functions to the Office of the President from other Departments VITUG, J p:
and Agencies; and "(3) Transfer any agency under the Office of the
President to any other department or agency as well as transfer agencies to President Joseph Estrada issued on 30 September 1998 Executive Order No.
the Office of the President from other departments and agencies." The first 29, entitled "Mandating the Streamlining of the National Tobacco
sentence of the law is an express grant to the President of a continuing Administration (NTA)," a government agency under the Department of
authority to reorganize the administrative structure of the Office of the Agriculture. The order was followed by another issuance, on 27 October
President. The succeeding numbered paragraphs are not in the nature of 1998, by President Estrada of Executive Order No. 36, amending Executive
provisos that unduly limit the aim and scope of the grant to the President of Order No. 29, insofar as the new staffing pattern was concerned, by
the power to reorganize but are to be viewed in consonance therewith. increasing from four hundred (400) to not exceeding seven hundred fifty
Section 31(1) of Executive Order No. 292 specifically refers to the (750) the positions affected thereby. In compliance therewith, the NTA
President's power to restructure the internal organization of the Office of the prepared and adopted a new Organization Structure and Staffing Pattern
President Proper, by abolishing, consolidating or merging units hereof or (OSSP) which, on 29 October 1998, was submitted to the Office of the
transferring functions from one unit to another, while Section 31(2) and (3) President.
concern executive offices outside the Office of the
President Proper allowing the President to transfer any function under
the Office of the President to any other Department or Agency and vice- On 11 November 1998, the rank and file employees of NTA Batac, among
versa, and the transfer of any agency under the Office of the President to whom included herein petitioners, filed a letter-appeal with the Civil
any other department or agency and vice-versa. In the present instance, Service Commission and sought its assistance in recalling the OSSP. On 04
involving neither an abolition nor transfer of offices, the assailed action is a December 1998, the OSSP was approved by the Department of Budget and
mere reorganization under the general provisions of the law consisting Management (DBM) subject to certain revisions. On even date, the NTA
created a placement committee to assist the appointing authority in the The RTC, on 09 September 2000, ordered the NTA to appoint petitioners in
selection and placement of permanent personnel in the revised OSSP. The the new OSSP to positions similar or comparable to their respective former
results of the evaluation by the committee on the individual qualifications of assignments. A motion for reconsideration filed by the NTA was denied by
applicants to the positions in the new OSSP were then disseminated and the trial court in its order of 28 February 2001. Thereupon, the NTA filed an
posted at the central and provincial offices of the NTA. CcAIDa appeal with the Court of Appeals, raising the following issues:

On 10 June 1996, petitioners, all occupying different positions at the NTA "I. Whether or not respondents submitted evidence as
office in Batac, Ilocos Norte, received individual notices of termination of proof that petitioners, individually, were not
their employment with the NTA effective thirty (30) days from receipt the 'best qualified and most deserving' among
thereof. Finding themselves without any immediate relief from their the incumbent applicant-employees.
dismissal from the service, petitioners filed a petition forcertiorari,
prohibition and mandamus, with prayer for preliminary mandatory "II. Whether or not incumbent permanent employees,
injunction and/or temporary restraining order, with the Regional Trial Court including herein petitioners, automatically
(RTC) of Batac, Ilocos Norte, and prayed — enjoy a preferential right and the right of first
refusal to appointments/reappointments in the
"1) that a restraining order be immediately issued new Organization Structure And Staffing
enjoining the respondents from enforcing the notice of Pattern (OSSP) of respondent NTA.
termination addressed individually to the petitioners
and/or from committing further acts of dispossession "III. Whether or not respondent NTA in implementing
and/or ousting the petitioners from their respective the mandated reorganization pursuant to E.O.
offices; No. 29, as amended by E.O. No. 36, strictly
adhere to the implementing rules on
reorganization, particularly RA 6656 and of
the Civil Service Commission — Rules on
"2) that a writ of preliminary injunction be issued Government Reorganization.
against the respondents, commanding them to maintain
the status quo to protect the rights of the petitioners "IV. Whether or not the validity of E.O. Nos. 29 and 36
pending the determination of the validity of the can be put in issue in the instant
implementation of their dismissal from the service; and case/appeal." 2

"3) that, after trial on the merits, judgment be rendered On 20 February 2002, the appellate court rendered a decision reversing
declaring the notice of termination of the petitioners and setting aside the assailed orders of the trial court.
illegal and the reorganization null and void and
ordering their reinstatement with backwages, if Petitioners went to this Court to assail the decision of the Court of Appeals,
applicable, commanding the respondents to desist from contending that —
further terminating their services, and making the
injunction permanent." 1 "I. The Court of Appeals erred in making a finding that
went beyond the issues of the case and which
are contrary to those of the trial court and that
it overlooked certain relevant facts not "1. The Court of Appeals' decision upholding the
disputed by the parties and which, if properly reorganization of the National Tobacco Administration
considered, would justify a different sets a dangerous precedent in that:
conclusion;
"'a) A mere Executive Order issued by the
"II. The Court of Appeals erred in upholding Executive Office of the President and procured by a
Order Nos. 29 and 36 of the Office of the government functionary would have the effect
President which are mere administrative of a blanket authority to reorganize a bureau,
issuances which do not have the force and office or agency attached to the various
effect of a law to warrant abolition of positions executive departments;
and/or effecting total reorganization;
'b) The President of the Philippines would
"III. The Court of Appeals erred in holding that have the plenary power to reorganize the entire
petitioners' removal from the service is in government Bureaucracy through the issuance
accordance with law; of an Executive Order, an administrative
issuance without the benefit of due
"IV. The Court of Appeals erred in holding that deliberation, debate and discussion of
respondent NTA was not guilty of bad faith in members of both chambers of the Congress of
the termination of the services of petitioners; the Philippines;
(and)
'c) The right to security of tenure to a career
"V. The Court of Appeals erred in ignoring case position created by law or statute would be
law/jurisprudence in the abolition of an defeated by the mere adoption of an
office." 3 Organizational Structure and Staffing Pattern
issued pursuant to an Executive Order which is
In its resolution of 10 July 2002, the Court required the NTA to file its not a law and could thus not abolish an office
comment on the petition. On 18 November 2002, after the NTA had created by law;
filed its comment of 23 September 2002, the Court issued its resolution
denying the petition for failure of petitioners to sufficiently show any "2. The case law on abolition of an office would be
reversible error on the part of the appellate court in its challenged disregarded, ignored and abandoned if the Court of
decision so as to warrant the exercise by this Court of its discretionary Appeals decision subject matter of this Petition would
appellate jurisdiction. A motion for reconsideration filed by petitioners remain undisturbed and untouched. In other words,
was denied in the Court's resolution of 20 January 2002. previous doctrines and precedents of this Highest Court
would in effect be reversed and/or modified with the
On 21 February 2003, petitioners submitted a "Motion to Admit Petition Court of Appeals judgment, should it remain
For En Banc Resolution" of the case allegedly to address a basic unchallenged.
question, i.e., "the legal and constitutional issue on whether the NTA may be
reorganized by an executive fiat, not by legislative action." 4 In their "3. Section 4 of Executive Order No. 245 dated July 24,
"Petition for an En Banc Resolution" petitioners would have it that — 1987 (Annex 'D,' Petition), issued by the Revolutionary
government of former President Corazon Aquino, and 191 on the Deactivation of the Economic Intelligence and Investigation
the law creating NTA, which provides that the Bureau and for Other Matters) on the ground that they were issued by the
governing body of NTA is the Board of Directors, President with grave abuse of discretion and in violation of their
would be rendered meaningless, ineffective and a dead constitutional right to security of tenure. The Court explained:
letter law because the challenged NTA reorganization
which was erroneously upheld by the Court of Appeals "The general rule has always been that the power to
was adopted and implemented by then NTA abolish a public office is lodged with the legislature.
Administrator Antonio de Guzman without the This proceeds from the legal precept that the power to
corresponding authority from the Board of Directors as create includes the power to destroy. A public office is
mandated therein. In brief, the reorganization is either created by the Constitution, by statute, or by
an ultra vires act of the NTA Administrator. authority of law. Thus, except where the office was
created by the Constitution itself, it may be abolished
"4. The challenged Executive Order No. 29 issued by by the same legislature that brought it into existence.
former President Joseph Estrada but unsigned by then
Executive Secretary Ronaldo Zamora would in effect "The exception, however, is that as far as bureaus,
be erroneously upheld and given legal effect as to agencies or offices in the executive department are
supersede, amend and/or modify Executive Order No. concerned, the President's power of control may justify
245, a law issued during the Freedom Constitution of him to inactivate the functions of a particular office, or
President Corazon Aquino. In brief, a mere executive certain laws may grant him the broad authority to carry
order would amend, supersede and/or render ineffective out reorganization measures. The case in point is Larin
a law or statute." 5 v. Executive Secretary [280 SCRA 713]. In this case, it
was argued that there is no law which empowers the
In order to allow the parties a full opportunity to ventilate their views on the President to reorganize the BIR. In decreeing otherwise,
matter, the Court ultimately resolved to hear the parties in oral argument. this Court sustained the following legal basis, thus:
Essentially, the core question raised by them is whether or not the President,
through the issuance of an executive order, can validly carry out the "'Initially, it is argued that there is no law yet
reorganization of the NTA. which empowers the President to issue E.O.
No. 132 or to reorganize the BIR.
Notwithstanding the apparent procedural lapse on the part of petitioner to
implead the Office of the President as party respondent pursuant to Section 'We do not agree.
7, Rule 3, of the 1997 Revised Rules of Civil Procedure, 6 this Court
resolved to rule on the merits of the petition. 'xxx xxx xxx

Buklod ng Kawaning EIIB vs. Zamora 7 ruled that the President, based on 'Section 48 of R.A. 7645 provides
existing laws, had the authority to carry out a reorganization in any branch that: SEIDAC
or agency of the executive department. In said case, Buklod ng Kawaning
EIIB challenged the issuance, and sought the nullification, of Executive
Order No. 191 (Deactivation of the Economic Intelligence and Investigation "Sec. 48. Scaling Down and Phase Out of
Bureau) and Executive Order No. 223 (Supplementary Executive Order No. Activities of Agencies Within the Executive
Branch. — The heads of departments, bureaus
and offices and agencies are hereby directed to 'Another legal basis of E.O. No. 132 is Section
identify their respective activities which are no 20, Book III of E.O. No. 292 which states:
longer essential in the delivery of public
services and which may be scaled down, "Sec. 20. Residual Powers. — Unless
phased out or abolished, subject to civil Congress provides otherwise, the President
service rules and regulations. . . . Actual shall exercise such other powers and functions
scaling down, phasing out or abolition of the vested in the President which are provided for
activities shall be effected pursuant to under the laws and which are not specifically
Circulars or Orders issued for the purpose by enumerated above or which are not delegated
the Office of the President.' by the President in accordance with law.'

'Said provision clearly mentions the acts of 'This provision speaks of such other powers
'scaling down, phasing out and abolition' of vested in the President under the law. What
offices only and does not cover the creation of law then gives him the power to reorganize? It
offices or transfer of functions. Nevertheless, is Presidential Decree No. 1772 which
the act of creating and decentralizing is amended Presidential Decree No. 1416. These
included in the subsequent provision of decrees expressly grant the President of the
Section 62 which provides that: Philippines the continuing authority to
reorganize the national government, which
"Sec. 62. Unauthorized organizational includes the power to group, consolidate
changes. — Unless otherwise created by law bureaus and agencies, to abolish offices, to
or directed by the President of the Philippines, transfer functions, to create and classify
no organizational unit or changes in key functions, services and activities and to
positions in any department or agency shall be standardize salaries and materials. The
authorized in their respective organization validity of these two decrees are
structures and be funded from appropriations unquestionable. The 1987 Constitution clearly
by this Act.' provides that 'all laws, decrees, executive
orders, proclamations, letter of instructions
and other executive issuances not inconsistent
with this Constitution shall remain operative
'The foregoing provision evidently shows that until amended, repealed or revoked. So far,
the President is authorized to effect there is yet no law amending or repealing said
organizational changes including the creation decrees.'
of offices in the department or agency
concerned. "Now, let us take a look at the assailed executive order.

'xxx xxx xxx "In the whereas clause of E.O. No. 191, former
President Estrada anchored his authority to deactivate
EIIB on Section 77 of Republic Act 8745 (FY 1999
General Appropriations Act), a provision similar to which constitutes an express grant of power. Under
Section 62 of R.A. 7645 quoted in Larin, thus: Section 31, Book III of Executive Order No.
292 (otherwise known as the Administrative Code of
"'Sec. 77. Organized Changes. 1987), 'the President, subject to the policy in the
— Unless otherwise provided by law Executive Office and in order to achieve simplicity,
or directed by the President of the Philippines, economy and efficiency, shall have the continuing
no changes in key positions or organizational authority to reorganize the administrative structure of
units in any department or agency shall be the Office of the President.' For this purpose, he may
authorized in their respective organizational transfer the functions of other Departments or Agencies
structures and funded from appropriations to the Office of the President. In Canonizado vs.
provided by this Act.' Aguirre [323 SCRA 312], we ruled that reorganization
'involves the reduction of personnel, consolidation of
"We adhere to the . . . ruling in Larin that this provision offices, or abolition thereof by reason of economy or
recognizes the authority of the President to effect redundancy of functions.' It takes place when there is an
organizational changes in the department or agency alteration of the existing structure of government
under the executive structure. Such a ruling further offices or units therein, including the lines of control,
finds support in Section 78 of Republic Act No. 8760. authority and responsibility between them. The EIIB is
Under this law, the heads of departments, bureaus, a bureau attached to the Department of Finance. It falls
offices and agencies and other entities in the Executive under the Office of the President. Hence, it is subject to
Branch are directed (a) to conduct a comprehensive the President's continuing authority to reorganize.
review of this respective mandates, missions,
objectives, functions, programs, projects, activities and "It having been duly established that the President has
systems and procedures; (b) identify activities which the authority to carry out reorganization in any branch
are no longer essential in the delivery of public services or agency of the executive department, what is then left
and which may be scaled down, phased-out or for us to resolve is whether or not the reorganization is
abolished; and (c) adopt measures that will result in the valid. In this jurisdiction, reorganizations have been
streamlined organization and improved overall regarded as valid provided they are pursued in good
performance of their respective agencies. Section 78 faith. Reorganization is carried out in 'good faith' if it is
ends up with the mandate that the actual streamlining for the purpose of economy or to make bureaucracy
and productivity improvement in agency organization more efficient. Pertinently, Republic Act No.
and operation shall be effected pursuant to Circulars or 6656provides for the circumstances which may be
Orders issued for the purpose by the Office of the considered as evidence of bad faith in the removal of
President. The law has spoken clearly. We are left only civil service employees made as a result of
with the duty to sustain. reorganization, to wit: (a) where there is a significant
increase in the number of positions in the new staffing
"But of course, the list of legal basis authorizing the pattern of the department or agency concerned; (b)
President to reorganize any department or agency in the where an office is abolished and another performing
executive branch does not have to end here. We must substantially the same functions is created; (c) where
not lose sight of the very source of the power — that incumbents are replaced by those less qualified in terms
of status of appointment, performance and merit; (d)
where there is a classification of offices in the the public service and the person chosen has the needed
department or agency concerned and the reclassified qualifications." 9
offices perform substantially the same functions as the
original offices, and (e) where the removal violates the These findings of the appellate court are basically factual which this
order of separation." 8 Court must respect and be held bound.

The Court of Appeals, in its now assailed decision, has found no evidence It is important to emphasize that the questioned Executive Orders No. 29
of bad faith on the part of the NTA; thus — and No. 36 have not abolished the National Tobacco Administration but
merely mandated its reorganization through the streamlining or reduction
"In the case at bar, we find no evidence that the of its personnel. Article VII, Section 17, 10 of the Constitution, expressly
respondents committed bad faith in issuing the notices grants the President control of all executive departments, bureaus, agencies
of non-appointment to the petitioners. and offices which may justify an executive action to inactivate the functions
of a particular office or to carry out reorganization measures under a broad
"Firstly, the number of positions in the new staffing authority of law. 11 Section 78 of the General Provisions of Republic Act
pattern did not increase. Rather, it decreased from 1,125 No. 8522 (General Appropriations Act of FY 1998) has decreed that the
positions to 750. It is thus natural that one's position President may direct changes in the organization and key positions in any
may be lost through the removal or abolition of an department, bureau or agency pursuant to Article VI, Section 25, 12 of the
office. Constitution, which grants to the Executive Department the authority to
recommend the budget necessary for its operation. Evidently, this grant of
"Secondly, the petitioners failed to specifically show power includes the authority to evaluate each and every government agency,
which offices were abolished and the new ones that including the determination of the most economical and efficient staffing
were created performing substantially the same pattern, under the Executive Department. caIDSH
functions.
In the recent case of Rosa Ligaya C. Domingo, et al. vs. Hon. Ronaldo D.
"Thirdly, the petitioners likewise failed to prove that Zamora, in his capacity as the Executive Secretary, et al., 13 this Court has
less qualified employees were appointed to the had occasion to also delve on the President's power to reorganize the Office
positions to which they applied. of the President under Section 31(2) and (3) of Executive Order No.
292 and the power to reorganize the Office of the PresidentProper. The
Court has there observed:
"xxx xxx xxx
". . . Under Section 31(1) of EO 292, the President can
"Fourthly, the preference stated in Section 4 of R.A. reorganize the Office of the President Proper by
6656, only means that old employees should be abolishing, consolidating or merging units, or by
considered first, but it does not necessarily follow that transferring functions from one unit to another. In
they should then automatically be appointed. This is contrast, under Section 31(2) and (3) of EO 292, the
because the law does not preclude the infusion of new President's power to reorganize offices outside the
blood, younger dynamism, or necessary talents into the Office of the PresidentProper but still within the Office
government service, provided that the acts of the of the President is limited to merely transferring
appointing power are bonafide for the best interest of
functions or agencies from the Office of the President Office of the President. The succeeding numbered paragraphs are not in
to Departments or Agencies, and vice versa." the nature of provisos that unduly limit the aim and scope of the grant
to the President of the power to reorganize but are to be viewed in
The provisions of Section 31, Book III, Chapter 10, of Executive Order consonance therewith. Section 31(1) of Executive Order No.
No. 292 (Administrative Code of 1987), above-referred to, reads 292 specifically refers to the President's power to restructure the
thusly: internal organization of the Office of the President Proper, by
abolishing, consolidating or merging units hereof or transferring
"SEC. 31. Continuing Authority of the President to functions from one unit to another, while Section 31(2) and (3) concern
Reorganize his Office. — The President, subject to the executive offices outside the Office of the President Proper allowing
policy in the Executive Office and in order to achieve the President to transfer any function under the Office of the President
simplicity, economy and efficiency, shall have to any other Department or Agency and vice-versa, and the transfer of
continuing authority to reorganize the administrative any agency under the Office of the President to any other department or
structure of the Office of the President. For this agency and vice-versa. 14
purpose, he may take any of the following actions:
In the present instance, involving neither an abolition nor transfer of offices,
"(1) Restructure the internal organization of the assailed action is a mere reorganization under the general provisions of
the Office of the President Proper, including the law consisting mainly of streamlining the NTA in the interest of
the immediate Offices, the Presidential Special simplicity, economy and efficiency. It is an act well within the authority of
Assistants/Advisers System and the Common President motivated and carried out, according to the findings of the
Staff Support System, by abolishing, appellate court, in good faith, a factual assessment that this Court could
consolidating or merging units thereof or only but accept. 15
transferring functions from one unit to another;
In passing, relative to petitioners' "Motion for an En Banc Resolution of the
Case," it may be well to remind counsel, that the Court En Banc is not an
appellate tribunal to which appeals from a Division of the Court may be
taken. A Division of the Court is the Supreme Court as fully and veritably as
"(2) Transfer any function under the Office of the Court En Banc itself and a decision of its Division is as authoritative
the President to any other Department or and final as a decision of the Court En Banc. Referrals of cases from a
Agency as well as transfer functions to the Division to the Court En Banc do not take place as just a matter of routine
Office of the President from other but only on such specified grounds as the Court in its discretion may
Departments and Agencies; and allow. 16

"(3) Transfer any agency under the Office of WHEREFORE, the Motion to Admit Petition for En Banc resolution and
the President to any other department or the Petition for an En Banc Resolution are DENIED for lack of merit. Let
agency as well as transfer agencies to the entry of judgment be made in due course. No costs.
Office of the President from other departments
and agencies."
SO ORDERED.
The first sentence of the law is an express grant to the President of
a continuing authority to reorganize the administrative structure of the Davide, Jr., C .J ., Ynares-Santiago, Carpio and Azcuna. JJ ., concur.
tenure and usurpation by the President of the power of Congress to abolish
public office.

EN BANC Procedural flaws like the disregard of hierarchy of courts and non-
exhaustion of administrative remedies may be ignored where the demands
[G.R. Nos. 142801-802. July 10, 2001.] of public interest requires it as where the status and existence of public
office is in issue.
BUKLOD NG KAWANING EIIB, CESAR
The general rule is that the power to abolish a public office lies with the
POSADA, REMEDIOS G. PRINCESA,
Legislature. However, the President by virtue of Section 31, Book III of
BENJAMIN KHO, BENIGNO MANGA, LULU
Executive Order No. 292(Administrative Code of 1987), Section 48 of R.A.
MENDOZA, petitioners, vs. HON. EXECUTIVE
7645, Section 20, Book III of E.O. No. 292, and Section 78 of R.A. 8760,
SECRETARY RONALDO B. ZAMORA, HON.
may abolish, in good faith, bureaus, agencies or offices. EICSTa
SECRETARY JOSE PARDO, DEPARTMENT OF
FINANCE, HON. SECRETARY BENJAMIN
DIOKNO, DEPARTMENT OF BUDGET AND Where an office is abolished to achieve the ultimate purpose of economy, as
MANAGEMENT, HON. SECRETARY ARTEMIO in the case at bar, the same is made in good faith.
TUQUERO, DEPARTMENT OF
JUSTICE, respondents.
SYLLABUS
Public Interest Law Center for petitioners.
1. REMEDIAL LAW; ACTIONS; PROCEDURAL FLAWS MAY BE
DISREGARDED WHERE PUBLIC INTEREST DEMANDS IT. —
The Solicitor General for respondents.
Despite the presence of some procedural flaws in the instant petition, such
as, petitioners' disregard of the hierarchy of courts and the non-exhaustion
of administrative remedies, we deem it necessary to address the issues. It is
SYNOPSIS
in the interest of the State that questions relating to the status and existence
of a public office be settled without delay. We are not without precedent.
The Economic Intelligence and Investigation Bureau (EIIB) of the Ministry
of Finance was created on June 30, 1987 by Executive Order No. 127. On
2. ADMINISTRATIVE LAW; PUBLIC OFFICE; "DEACTIVATE" AND
January 7, 2000, then President Joseph Estrada issued Executive Order No.
"ABOLISH," DISTINGUISHED. — Surely, there exists a distinction
191 deactivating the EIIB. Its function was transferred to the newly created
between the words "deactivate" and "abolish." To "deactivate" means to
Task Force Aduana which utilized the personnel, facilities and resources of
render inactive or ineffective or to break up by discharging or reassigning
existing departments, agencies and bureaus. Thus, no new employees were
personnel, while to "abolish" means to do away with, to annul, abrogate or
hired. Its personnel came from other agencies and detailed with the Task
destroy completely. In essence, abolition denotes an intention to do away
Force. On March 29, 2000, Executive Order No. 223 was issued separating
with the office wholly and permanently. Thus, while in abolition, the office
all EIIB personnel from the service effective April 30, 2000. Aggrieved,
ceases to exist, the same is not true in deactivation where the office
petitioners, employees of the EIIB, without exhausting administrative
continues to exist, albeit remaining dormant or inoperative. Be that as it
remedies and the hierarchy of courts, resorted to this recourse challenging
may, deactivation and abolition are both reorganization measures.
Executive Orders Nos. 191 and 223 as violative of their right to security of
3. ID.; ID.; POWER TO ABOLISH PUBLIC OFFICE, AS A GENERAL subject to the policy in the Executive Office and in order to achieve
RULE, LODGED WITH THE LEGISLATURE. — The general rule has simplicity, economy and efficiency, shall have the continuing authority to
always been that the power to abolish a public office is lodged with the reorganize the administrative structure of the Office of the President." For
legislature. This proceeds from the legal precept that the power to create this purpose, he may transfer the functions of other Departments or
includes the power to destroy. A public office is either created by the Agencies to the Office of the President. In Canonizado v. Aguirre, we ruled
Constitution, by statute, or by authority of law. Thus, except where the that reorganization "involves the reduction of personnel, consolidation of
office was created by the Constitution itself, it may be abolished by the offices, or abolition thereof by reason of economy or redundancy of
same legislature that brought it into existence. functions." It takes place when there is an alteration of the existing structure
of government offices or units therein, including the lines of control,
4. ID.; ID.; ID.; EXCEPTION. — The exception, however, is that as far as authority and responsibility between them. The EIIB is a bureau attached to
bureaus, agencies or offices in the executive department are concerned, the the Department of Finance. It falls under the Office of the President. Hence,
President's power of control may justify him to inactivate the functions of a it is subject to the President's continuing authority to reorganize. HIaTDS
particular office, or certain laws may grant him the broad authority to carry
out reorganization measures. The case in point is Larin v. Executive 6. ADMINISTRATIVE LAW; PUBLIC OFFICE; REORGANIZATION
Secretary. CARRIED OUT IN GOOD FAITH, VALID. — In this jurisdiction,
reorganizations have been regarded as valid provided they are pursued in
5. CONSTITUTIONAL LAW; PRESIDENT; WITH AUTHORITY TO good faith. Reorganization is carried out in 'good faith' if it is for the
EFFECT ORGANIZATIONAL CHANGES, INCLUDING ABOLITION, purpose of economy or to make bureaucracy more efficient.
IN EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT OR AGENCY; BASIS. — We adhere to
the precedent or ruling in Larin that this provision recognizes the authority 7. ID.; ID.; ID.; DEACTIVATION OF EIIB AND CREATION OF TASK
of the President to effect organizational changes in the department or FORCE ADUANA, MADE IN GOOD FAITH. — An examination of the
agency under the executive structure. Such a ruling further finds support in pertinent Executive Orders shows that the deactivation of EIIB and the
Section 78 of Republic Act No. 8760. Under this law, the heads of creation of Task Force Aduana were done in good faith. It was not for the
departments, bureaus, offices and agencies and other entities in the purpose of removing the EIIB employees, but to achieve the ultimate
Executive Branch are directed (a) to conduct a comprehensive review of purpose of E.O. No. 191, which is economy. While Task Force Aduana was
their respective mandates, missions, objectives, functions, programs, created to take the place of EIIB, its creation does not entail expense to the
projects, activities and systems and procedures; (b) identify activities which government. There is no employment of new personnel to man the Task
are no longer essential in the delivery of public services and which may be Force. E.O. No. 196 provides that the technical, administrative and special
scaled down, phased-out or abolished; and (c) adopt measures that will staffs of EIIB are to be composed of people who are already in the public
result in the streamlined organization and improved overall performance of service, they being employees of other existing agencies. Obviously, the
their respective agencies. Section 78 ends up with the mandate that idea is to encourage the utilization of personnel, facilities and resources of
the actual streamlining and productivity improvement in agency the already existing departments, agencies, bureaus, etc., instead of
organization and operation shall be effected pursuant to Circulars or maintaining an independent office with a whole set of personnel and
Orders issued for the purpose by the Office of the President. The law has facilities. It is evident from the yearly budget appropriation of the
spoken clearly. We are left only with the duty to sustain. But of course, the government that the creation of the Task Force Aduana was especially
list of legal basis authorizing the President to reorganize any department or intended to lessen EIIB's expenses.
agency in the executive branch does not have to end here. We must not lose
sight of the very source of the power — that which constitutes an express 8. ID.; ID.; ABOLITION OF OFFICE; DOES NOT CURTAIL RIGHT TO
grant of power. Under Section 31, Book III of Executive Order No. SECURITY OF TENURE. — We hold that petitioners' right to security of
292 (otherwise known as the Administrative Code of 1987), "the President,
tenure is not violated. Nothing is better settled in our law than that the sabotage, smuggling, tax evasion, and dollar-salting,
abolition of an office within the competence of a legitimate body if done in investigate the same and aid in the prosecution of cases;
good faith suffers from no infirmity. Valid abolition of offices is neither
removal nor separation of the incumbents. EIASDT (b) Coordinate with external agencies in monitoring the
financial and economic activities of persons or entities,
9. ID.; ID.; EXCEPT IN CONSTITUTIONAL OFFICES, NO ONE HAS whether domestic or foreign, which may adversely
VESTED RIGHT IN AN OFFICE OR ITS SALARY. — Indeed, there is no affect national financial interest with the goal of
such thing as an absolute right to hold office. Except constitutional offices regulating, controlling or preventing said activities;
which provide for special immunity as regards salary and tenure, no one can
be said to have any vested right in an office or its salary. (c) Provide all intelligence units of operating Bureaus
or Offices under the Ministry with the general
framework and guidelines in the conduct of intelligence
and investigating works;
DECISION
(d) Supervise, monitor and coordinate all the
SANDOVAL-GUTIERREZ, J p:
intelligence and investigation operations of the
operating Bureaus and Offices under the Ministry;
In this petition for certiorari, prohibition and mandamus,
petitioners Buklod Ng Kawaning EIIB, Cesar Posada, Remedios Princesa,
(e) Investigate, hear and file, upon clearance by the
Benjamin Kho, Benigno Manga and Lulu Mendoza, for themselves and in
Minister, anti-graft and corruption cases against
behalf of others with whom they share a common or general interest, seek
personnel of the Ministry and its constituents units;
the nullification of Executive Order No. 191 1 and Executive Order
No. 223 2 on the ground that they were issued by the Office of the President
with grave abuse of discretion and in violation of their constitutional right (f) Perform such other appropriate functions as may be
to security of tenure. assigned by the Minister or his deputies." 5

The facts are undisputed: In a desire to achieve harmony of efforts and to prevent possible conflicts
among agencies in the course of their anti-smuggling operations, President
Aquino issuedMemorandum Order No. 225 on March 17, 1989, providing,
On June 30, 1987, former President Corazon C. Aquino, issued Executive
among others, that the EIIB "shall be the agency of primary responsibility
Order No. 127 3 establishing the Economic Intelligence and Investigation
for anti-smuggling operations in all land areas and inland waters and
Bureau (EIIB) as part of the structural organization of the Ministry of
waterways outside the areas of sole jurisdiction of the Bureau of
Finance. 4 The EIIB was designated to perform the following functions:
Customs." 6

Eleven years after, or on January 7, 2000, President Joseph Estrada


issued Executive Order No. 191 entitled "Deactivation of the Economic
"(a) Receive, gather and evaluate intelligence reports Intelligence and Investigation Bureau." 7 Motivated by the fact that "the
and information and evidence on the nature, modes and designated functions of the EIIB are also being performed by the other
extent of illegal activities affecting the national existing agencies of the government" and that "there is a need to constantly
economy, such as, but not limited to, economic monitor the overlapping of functions" among these agencies, former
President Estrada ordered the deactivation of EIIB and the transfer of its Petitioners contend that the issuance of the afore-mentioned executive
functions to the Bureau of Customs and the National Bureau of orders is: (a) a violation of their right to security of tenure; (b) tainted with
Investigation. bad faith as they were not actually intended to make the bureaucracy more
efficient but to give way to Task Force "Aduana," the functions of which are
Meanwhile, President Estrada issued Executive Order No. 196 8 creating essentially and substantially the same as that ofEIIB; and (c) a usurpation of
the Presidential Anti-Smuggling Task Force "Aduana." 9 the power of Congress to decide whether or not to abolish the EIIB.

Then the day feared by the EIIB employees came. On March 29, 2000, Arguing in behalf of respondents, the Solicitor General maintains that: (a)
President Estrada issued Executive Order No. 223 10 providing that the President enjoys the totality of the executive power provided
all EIIB personnel occupying positions specified therein shall be deemed under Sections 1 and 7, Article VII of the Constitution, thus, he has the
separated from the service effective April 30, 2000, pursuant to a bona authority to issue Executive Order Nos. 191 and 223; (b) the said executive
fide reorganization resulting to abolition, redundancy, merger, division, or orders were issued in the interest of national economy, to avoid duplicity of
consolidation of positions. 11 work and to streamline the functions of the bureaucracy; and (c)
the EIIB was not "abolished," it was only "deactivated."
Agonizing over the loss of their employment, petitioners now come before
this Court invoking our power of judicial review of Executive Order The petition is bereft of merit. DcICEa
Nos. 191 and 223. They anchor their petition on the following arguments:
Despite the presence of some procedural flaws in the instant petition, such
"A as, petitioners' disregard of the hierarchy of courts and the non-exhaustion
of administrative remedies, we deem it necessary to address the issues. It is
Executive Order Nos. 191 and 223 should be annulled in the interest of the State that questions relating to the status and existence
as they are unconstitutional for being violative of a public office be settled without delay. We are not without precedent.
of Section 2(3), Article IX-B of the Philippine In Dario v. Mison, 12 we liberally decreed:
Constitution and/or for having been issued with grave
abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of "The Court disregards the questions raised as to
jurisdiction. procedure, failure to exhaust administrative remedies,
the standing of certain parties to sue, for two
B. reasons,'[b]ecause of the demands of public interest,
including the need for stability in the public
service,' and because of the serious implications of
The abolition of the EIIB is a hoax. Similarly, if these cases on the administration of the Philippine civil
Executive Order Nos. 191 and 223 are considered to service and the rights of public servants."
effect a reorganization of the EIIB, such reorganization
was made in bad faith.
At first glance, it seems that the resolution of this case hinges on the
question — Does the "deactivation" of EIIB constitute "abolition" of an
C. office? However, after coming to terms with the prevailing law and
jurisprudence, we are certain that the ultimate queries should be — a) Does
The President has no authority to abolish the EIIB." the President have the authority to reorganize the executive department?
and, b) How should the reorganization be carried out?
Surely, there exists a distinction between the words "deactivate" and 'SECTION 48. Scaling Down and Phase Out of
"abolish." To "deactivate" means to render inactive or ineffective or to Activities of Agencies Within the Executive Branch. —
break up by discharging or reassigning personnel, 13 while to "abolish" The heads of departments, bureaus and offices and
means to do away with, to annul, abrogate or destroy completely. 14 In agencies are hereby directed to identify their respective
essence, abolition denotes an intention to do away with the activities which are no longer essential in the delivery
office wholly and permanently. 15 Thus, while in abolition, the office of public services and which may be scaled down,
ceases to exist, the same is not true in deactivation where the office phased out or abolished, subject to civil service rules
continues to exist, albeit remaining dormant or inoperative. Be that as it and regulations. . . Actual scaling down, phasing out or
may, deactivation and abolition are both reorganization measures. abolition of the activities shall be effected pursuant to
Circulars or Orders issued for the purpose by the Office
The Solicitor General only invokes the above distinctions on the mistaken of the President.'
assumption that the President has no power to abolish an office.
Said provision clearly mentions the acts of "scaling
The general rule has always been that the power to abolish a public office is down, phasing out and abolition" of offices only and
lodged with the legislature. 16 This proceeds from the legal precept that the does not cover the creation of offices or transfer of
power to create includes the power to destroy. A public office is either functions. Nevertheless, the act of creating and
created by the Constitution, by statute, or by authority of law. 17 Thus, decentralizing is included in the subsequent provision
except where the office was created by the Constitution itself, it may be of Section 62 which provides that:
abolished by the same legislature that brought it into existence. 18
'SECTION 62. Unauthorized organizational charges.
The exception, however, is that as far as bureaus, agencies or offices in the — Unless otherwise created by law or directed by the
executive department are concerned, the President's power of control may President of the Philippines, no organizational unit or
justify him to inactivate the functions of a particular office, 19 or certain changes in key positions in any department or agency
laws may grant him the broad authority to carry out reorganization shall be authorized in their respective organization
measures. 20 The case in point is Larin v. Executive Secretary. 21 In this structures and be funded from appropriations by this
case, it was argued that there is no law which empowers the President to Act.' (emphasis ours)
reorganize the BIR. In decreeing otherwise, this Court sustained the
following legal basis, thus: The foregoing provision evidently shows that the
President is authorized to effect organizational changes
"Initially, it is argued that there is no law yet which including the creation of offices in the department or
empowers the President to issue E.O. No. 132 or to agency concerned.
reorganize the BIR.
xxx xxx xxx
We do not agree.
Another legal basis of E.O. No. 132 is Section 20, Book
xxx xxx xxx III of E.O. No. 292 which states:

Section 48 of R.A. 7645 provides that: 'SECTION 20. Residual Powers. — Unless Congress
provides otherwise, the President shall exercise such
other powers and functions vested in the President agency shall be authorized in their respective
which are provided for under the laws and which are organizational structures and funded from
not specifically enumerated above or which are not appropriations provided by this Act."
delegated by the President in accordance with law.'
(emphasis ours) We adhere to the precedent or ruling in Larin that this provision recognizes
the authority of the President to effect organizational changes in the
This provision speaks of such other powers vested in department or agency under the executive structure. Such a ruling further
the President under the law. What law then gives him finds support in Section 78 of Republic Act No. 8760. 22 Under this law,
the power to reorganize? It is Presidential Decree the heads of departments, bureaus, offices and agencies and other entities in
No.1772 which amended Presidential Decree the Executive Branch are directed (a) to conduct a comprehensive review of
No.1416. These decrees expressly grant the President their respective mandates, missions, objectives, functions, programs,
of the Philippines the continuing authority to projects, activities and systems and procedures; (b) identify activities which
reorganize the national government, which includes the are no longer essential in the delivery of public services and which may be
power to group, consolidate bureaus and agencies, to scaled down, phased-out or abolished; and (c) adopt measures that will
abolish offices, to transfer functions, to create and result in the streamlined organization and improved overall performance of
classify functions, services and activities and to their respective agencies. 23 Section 78 ends up with the mandate that
standardize salaries and materials. The validity of the actual streamlining and productivity improvement in agency
these two decrees are unquestionable. The 1987 organization and operation shall be effected pursuant to Circulars or
Constitution clearly provides that "all laws, decrees, Orders issued for the purpose by the Office of the President. 24 The law has
executive orders, proclamations, letters of instructions spoken clearly. We are left only with the duty to sustain.
and other executive issuances not inconsistent with this
Constitution shall remain operative until amended, But of course, the list of legal basis authorizing the President to reorganize
repealed or revoked. So far, there is yet no law any department or agency in the executive branch does not have to end
amending or repealing said decrees." (Emphasis here. We must not lose sight of the very source of the power — that which
supplied) constitutes an express grant of power. Under Section 31, Book III of
Executive Order No. 292 (otherwise known as theAdministrative Code of
1987), "the President, subject to the policy in the Executive Office and in
order to achieve simplicity, economy and efficiency, shall have the
Now, let us take a look at the assailed executive order. continuing authority to reorganize the administrative structure of the Office
of the President." For this purpose, he may transfer the functions of other
In the whereas clause of E.O. No. 191, former President Estrada anchored Departments or Agencies to the Office of the President. In Canonizado
his authority to deactivate EIIB on Section 77 of Republic Act 8745 v. Aguirre, 25 we ruled that reorganization "involves the reduction of
(FY 1999 General Appropriations Act), a provision similar to Section 62 personnel, consolidation of offices, or abolition thereof by reason of
of R.A. 7645 quoted in Larin, thus; economy or redundancy of functions." It takes place when there is an
alteration of the existing structure of government offices or units therein,
including the lines of control, authority and responsibility between them.
"SECTION 77. Organized Changes. The EIIB is a bureau attached to the Department of Finance. 26 It falls
— Unless otherwise provided by law or directed by the under the Office of the President. Hence, it is subject to the President's
President of the Philippines, no changes in key continuing authority to reorganize.
positions or organizational units in any department or
It having been duly established that the President has the authority to carry employment with the existing agencies. And should the need for them cease,
out reorganization in any branch or agency of the executive department, they would be sent back to the agency concerned.
what is then left for us to resolve is whether or not the reorganization is
valid. In this jurisdiction, reorganizations have been regarded as valid Secondly, the thrust of E.O. No. 196 is to have a small group of military
provided they are pursued in good faith. Reorganization is carried out in men under the direct control and supervision of the President as base of the
'good faith' if it is for the purpose of economy or to make bureaucracy more government's anti-smuggling campaign. Such a smaller base has the
efficient. 27 Pertinently, Republic Act No. 6656 28 provides for the necessary powers 1) to enlist the assistance of any department, bureau, or
circumstances which may be considered as evidence of bad faith in the office and to use their respective personnel, facilities and resources; and 2)
removal of civil service employees made as a result of reorganization, to "to select and recruit personnel from within the PSG and ISAFP
wit: (a) where there is a significant increase in the number of positions in for assignment to the Task Force." Obviously, the idea is to encourage the
the new staffing pattern of the department or agency concerned; (b) where utilization of personnel, facilities and resources of the already existing
an office is abolished and another performing substantially the same departments, agencies, bureaus, etc., instead of maintaining an independent
functions is created; (c) where incumbents are replaced by those less office with a whole set of personnel and facilities. The EIIB had proven
qualified in terms of status of appointment, performance and merit; (d) itself burdensome for the government because it maintained separate offices
where there is a classification of offices in the department or agency in every region in the Philippines.
concerned and the reclassified offices perform substantially the same
functions as the original offices, and (e) where the removal violates the And thirdly, it is evident from the yearly budget appropriation of the
order of separation. 29 government that the creation of the Task Force Aduana was especially
intended to lessen EIIB's expenses. Tracing from the yearly General
Petitioners claim that the deactivation of EIIB was done in bad faith Appropriations Act, it appears that the allotted amount for the EIIB's
because four days after its deactivation, President Estrada created the Task general administration, support, and operations for the year 1995,
Force Aduana. wasP128,031,000; 31 for 1996, P182,156,000; 32 for
1998, P219,889,000; 33 and, for 1999, P238,743,000. 34 These amounts
We are not convinced. were far above the P50,000,000 35 allocation to the Task Force Aduana for
the year 2000.
An examination of the pertinent Executive Orders 30 shows that the
deactivation of EIIB and the creation of Task Force Aduana were done in While basically, the functions of the EIIB have devolved upon the Task
good faith. It was not for the purpose of removing the EIIB employees, but Force Aduana, we find the latter to have additional new powers. The Task
to achieve the ultimate purpose of E.O. No. 191, which is economy. While Force Aduana, being composed of elements from the Presidential Security
Task Force Aduana was created to take the place ofEIIB, its creation does Group (PSG) and Intelligence Service Armed Forces of the Philippines
not entail expense to the government. (ISAFP), 36 has the essential power to effect searches, seizures and arrests.
The EIIB did not have this power. The Task Force Aduana has the power to
Firstly, there is no employment of new personnel to man the Task enlist the assistance of any department, bureau, office, or instrumentality of
Force. E.O. No. 196 provides that the technical, administrative and special the government, including government-owned or controlled corporations;
staffs of EIIB are to be composed of people who are already in the public and to use their personnel, facilities and resources. Again, the EIIB did not
service, they being employees of other existing agencies. Their tenure with have this power. And, the Task Force Aduana has the additional authority to
the Task Force would only be temporary, i.e., only when the agency where conduct investigation of cases involving ill-gotten wealth. This was not
they belong is called upon to assist the Task Force. Since their employment expressly granted to the EIIB.
with the Task force is only by way of detail or assignment, they retain their
Consequently, it cannot be said that there is a feigned reorganization. the EIIB will not be the last agency to suffer the impact. We cannot frustrate
In Blaquera v. Civil Service Commission, 37 we ruled that a reorganization valid measures which are designed to rebuild the executive department.
in good faith is one designed to trim the fat off the bureaucracy and institute
economy and greater efficiency in its operation.

Lastly, we hold that petitioners' right to security of tenure is not violated. WHEREFORE, the petition is hereby DENIED. No costs.
Nothing is better settled in our law than that the abolition of an office within
the competence of a legitimate body if done in good faith suffers from no SO ORDERED. CHDaAE
infirmity. Valid abolition of offices is neither removal nor separation of the
incumbents. 38 In the instructive words laid down by this Court in Dario
v. Mison, 39 through Justice Abraham F. Sarmiento: Davide, Jr., C.J., Bellosillo, Melo, Puno, Vitug, Kapunan, Mendoza, Pardo,
Buena, Ynares-Santiago and De Leon, Jr., JJ., concur.
Reorganizations in this jurisdiction have been regarded
as valid provided they are pursued in good faith. As a Quisumbing and Panganiban, JJ., concurs in the result.
general rule, a reorganization is carried out in "good
faith" if it is for the purpose of economy or to make Gonzaga-Reyes, J., is on leave.
bureaucracy more efficient. In that event, no dismissal
(in case of dismissal) or separation actually occurs
because the position itself ceases to exist. And in that
case, security of tenure would not be a Chinese wall. Be
that as it may, if the 'abolition,' which is nothing else
but a separation or removal, is done for political reasons
or purposely to defeat security of tenure, otherwise not
in good faith, no valid 'abolition' takes and whatever
'abolition' is done, is void ab initio. There is an invalid
'abolition' as where there is merely a change of
nomenclature of positions, or where claims of economy
are belied by the existence of ample funds.

Indeed, there is no such thing as an absolute right to hold office. Except


constitutional offices which provide for special immunity as regards salary
and tenure, no one can be said to have any vested right in an office or its
salary. 40

While we cast a commiserating look upon the plight of all


the EIIB employees whose lives perhaps are now torn with uncertainties,
we cannot ignore the unfortunate reality that our government is also battling
the impact of a plummeting economy. Unless the government is given the
chance to recuperate by instituting economy and efficiency in its system,
universities and colleges at six (6) years, renewable for another term of six
(6) years, and authorizing the President of the Philippines to terminate the
terms of incumbents who were not reappointed. In this case, Dr. Pablo T.
SECOND DIVISION Mateo, Jr., who had been acting president of the university since April 3,
1979, was appointed president of the PUP for a term of six (6) years on
[G.R. No. 106296. July 5, 1996.] March 28, 1980, with the result that petitioner's term was cut short. In
accordance with §7 of the law, therefore, petitioner became entitled only to
retirement benefits or the payment of separation pay. Petitioner must have
ISABELO T. CRISOSTOMO, petitioner, vs. recognized this fact, that is why in 1992 he asked then President Aquino to
THE COURT OF APPEALS and the consider him for appointment to the same position after it had become
PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondents. * vacant in consequence of the retirement of Dr. Prudente.

Puno & Associates Law Office for petitioner.


DECISION
The Solicitor General for respondents.
MENDOZA, J p:
SYLLABUS
This is a petition to review the decision of the Court of Appeals dated July
1. ADMINISTRATIVE LAW; PUBLIC OFFICE; 15, 1992, the dispositive portion of which reads:
ABOLITION OF OFFICE; MUST BE MADE BY MEANS OF AN
EXPRESS DECLARATION TO THAT EFFECT BY THE LAWMAKING WHEREFORE, the present petition is partially granted.
AUTHORITY. — P.D. No. 1341 did not abolish, but only changed, the The questioned Orders and writs directing (1)
former Philippine College of Commerce into what is now the Polytechnic "reinstatement" of respondent Isabelo T. Crisostomo to
University of the Philippines, in the same way that earlier in 1952, R.A. No. the position of "President of the Polytechnic
778 had converted what was then the Philippine School of Commerce into University of the Philippines," and (2)
the Philippine College of Commerce. What took place was a change in payment of "salaries and benefits" which said
academic status of the educational institution, not in its corporate life. respondent failed to receive during his suspension
Hence the change in its name, the expansion of its curricular offerings, and insofar as such payment includes those accruing after
the changes in its structure and organization. As petitioner correctly points the abolition of the PCC and its transfer to the PUP, are
out, when the purpose is to abolish a department or an office or an hereby set aside. Accordingly, further proceedings
organization and to replace it with another one, the lawmaking authority consistent with this decision may be taken by
says so. the court a quo to determine the correct amounts due
and payable to said respondent by the said university.
2. ID.; ID.; EXPIRATION OF TERM OF OFFICE; BARS A PUBLIC
OFFICER FROM INVOKING HIS CLAIM OF REINSTATEMENT. — The background of this case is as follows:
The reinstatement of petitioner to the positionof president of the PUP could
not be ordered by the trial court because on June 10, 1978, P.D. No.
1437 had been promulgated fixing the term of office of presidents of state
Petitioner Isabelo Crisostomo was President of the Philippine On July 11, 1980, the Circuit Criminal Court of Manila rendered judgment
College of Commerce (PCC), having been appointed to that position by the acquitting petitioner of the charges against him. The dispositive
President of the Philippines on July 17, 1974. portion of the decision reads:

During his incumbency as president of the PCC, two administrative cases WHEREFORE, the Court finds the accused, Isabelo
were filed against petitioner for illegal use of government vehicles, T. Crisostomo, not guilty of the violations charged in all
misappropriation of construction materials belonging to the college, these three cases and hereby acquits him therefrom,
oppression and harassment, grave misconduct, nepotism and dishonesty. with costs de oficio. The bail bonds filed by said
The administrative cases, which were filed with the Office of the President, accused for his provisional liberty are hereby cancelled
were subsequently referred to the Office of the Solicitor General for and released.
investigation.
Pursuant to the provisions of Section 13, R.A. No.
Charges of violations of R.A. No. 3019, §3 (e) and R.A. No. 3019, as amended, otherwise known as The Anti-Graft
992, §20-21 and R.A. No. 733, §14 were likewise filed against him and Corrupt Practices Act, and under which the accused
with the Office of Tanodbayan. has been suspended by this Court in an Order dated
October 22, 1976, said accused is hereby ordered
On June 14, 1976, three (3) informations for violation of Sec. 3 reinstated to the position of President of the Philippine
(e) of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act (R.A. No. 3019, as College ofCommerce, now known as the Polytechnic
amended) were filed against him. The informations alleged that he University of the Philippines, from which he has been
appropriated for himself a bahay kubo, which was intended for the College, suspended. By virtue of said reinstatement, he is
and construction materials worth P250,000.00, more or less. Petitioner was entitled to receive the salaries and other benefits which
also accused of using a driver of the College as his personal and family he failed to receive during suspension, unless in the
driver. 1 meantime administrative proceedings have been filed
against him.
On October 22, 1976, petitioner was preventively suspended from office
pursuant to R.A. No. 3019, §13, as amended. In his place Dr. Pablo T. The bail bonds filed by the accused for his provisional
Mateo, Jr. was designated as officer-in-charge on November 10, 1976, and liberty in these cases are hereby cancelled and released.
then as Acting President on May 13, 1977.
SO ORDERED.
On April 1, 1978, P.D. No. 1341 was issued by then President Ferdinand E.
Marcos, CONVERTING THE PHILIPPINE COLLEGE OF COMMERCE The cases filed before the Tanodbayan (now the Ombudsman) were
INTO A POLYTECHNIC UNIVERSITY, DEFINING ITS OBJECTIVES, likewise dismissed on August 8, 1991 on the ground that they had become
ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE AND FUNCTIONS, AND moot and academic. On the other hand, the administrative cases were
EXPANDING ITS CURRICULAR OFFERINGS. dismissed for failure of the complainants to prosecute them.

Mateo continued as the head of the new University. On April 3, 1979, he On February 12, 1992, petitioner filed with the Regional Trial Court a
was appointed Acting President and on March 28, 1980, as President for a motion for execution of the judgment, particularly the part ordering his
term of six (6)years. reinstatement to the position ofpresident of the PUP and the payment of his
salaries and other benefits during the period of suspension.
The motion was granted and a partial writ of execution was issued by the PCC to the PUP. The case was remanded to the trial court for a
trial court on March 6, 1992. On March 26, 1992, however, President determination of the amounts due and payable to petitioner.
Corazon C. Aquino appointed Dr. Jaime Gellor as acting president of the
PUP, following the expiration of the term of office of Dr. Nemesio Hence this petition. Petitioner argues that P.D. No. 1341, which converted
Prudente, who had succeeded Dr. Mateo. Petitioner was one ofthe five the PCC into the PUP, did not abolish the PCC. He contends that if the law
nominees considered by the President of the Philippines for the position. had intended the PCC to lose its existence, it would have specified that the
PCC was being "abolished" rather than "converted" and that if the PUP was
On April 24, 1992, the Regional Trial Court, through respondent Judge intended to be a new institution, the law would have said it was being
Teresita Dy-Liaco Flores, issued another order, reiterating her earlier order "created." Petitioner claims that the PUP is merely a continuation of the
for the reinstatement ofpetitioner to the position of PUP president. A existence of the PCC, and, hence, he could be reinstated to his former
writ of execution, ordering the sheriff to implement the position as president.
order of reinstatement, was issued.
In part the contention is well taken, but, as will presently be explained,
In his return dated April 28, 1992, the sheriff stated that he had executed the reinstatement is no longer possible because of the promulgation of P.D. No.
writ by installing petitioner as President of the PUP, although Dr. Gellor did 1437 by the President ofthe Philippines on June 10, 1978.
not vacate the office as he wanted to consult with the President of the
Philippines first. This led to a contempt citation against Dr. Gellor. A P.D. No. 1341 did not abolish, but only changed, the former Philippine
hearing was set on May 7, 1992. On May 5, 1992, petitioner also moved to College of Commerce into what is now the Polytechnic University of the
cite Department of Education, Culture and Sports Secretary Isidro Cariño in Philippines, in the same way that earlier in 1952, R.A. No. 778 had
contempt of court. Petitioner assumed the office of president of the PUP. converted what was then the Philippine School of Commerce into the
Philippine College of Commerce. What took place was a change in
On May 18, 1992, therefore, the People of the Philippines filed a petition academic status of the educational institution, not in its corporate life.
for certiorari and prohibition (CA G.R. No. 27931), assailing the two orders Hence the change in its name, the expansion of its curricular offerings, and
and the writs of execution issued by the trial court. It also asked for a the changes in its structure and organization.
temporary restraining order.

On June 25, 1992, the Court of Appeals issued a temporary restraining


order, enjoining petitioner to cease and desist from acting as president of the As petitioner correctly points out, when the purpose is to abolish a
PUP pursuant to the reinstatement orders of the trial court, and enjoining department or an office or an organization and to replace it with another
further proceedings in Criminal Cases Nos. VI-2329-2331. one, the lawmaking authority says so. He cites the following examples:

On July 15, 1992, the Seventh Division of the Court of Appeals rendered a E.O. No. 709:
decision, 2 the dispositive portion of which is set forth at the
beginning of this opinion. Said decision set aside the orders and §1. There is hereby created a Ministry of Trade and
writ of reinstatement issued by the trial court. The payment of salaries and Industry, hereinafter referred to as the Ministry. The
benefits to petitioner accruing after the conversion of the PCC to the PUP existing Ministry of Trade established pursuant
was disallowed. Recovery of salaries and benefits was limited to those toPresidential Decree No. 721 as amended, and the
accruing from the time of petitioner's suspension until the conversion of the existing Ministry established pursuant to Presidential
Decree No. 488 as amended, are abolished together
with their services, bureaus and similar agencies, Police, shall cease to be a major service of the Armed
regional offices, and all other entities under their Forces of the Philippines. The Integrated National
supervision and control. . . Police, which is the civilian component of the
Philippine Constabulary-Integrated National Police,
E.O. No. 710: shall cease to be the national police force and in lieu
thereof, a new police force shall be established and
§1. There is hereby created a Ministry of Public Works constituted pursuant to this Act.
and Highways, hereinafter referred to as the Ministry.
The existing Ministry of Public Works established In contrast, P.D. No. 1341, provides:
pursuant to Executive Order No. 546 as amended, and
the existing Ministry of Public Highways established §1. The present Philippine College of Commerce is
pursuant to Presidential Decree No. 458 as amended, hereby converted into a university to be known as the
are abolished together with their services, bureaus and "Polytechnic University of the Philippines," hereinafter
similar agencies, regional offices, and all other entities referred to in this Decree as the University.
within their supervision and control. . . .
As already noted, R.A. No. 778 earlier provided:
R.A. No. 6975:
§1. The present Philippine School of Commerce,
§13. Creation and Composition. — A National Police located in the City of Manila, Philippines, is hereby
Commission, hereinafter referred to as the Commission, granted full college status and converted into the
is hereby created for the purpose of effectively Philippine College of Commerce, which will offer not
discharging the functions prescribed in the Constitution only its present one-year and two-year vocational
and provided in this Act. The Commission shall be a commercial curricula, the latter leading to the
collegial body within the Department. It shall be titles of Associate in Business Education and/or
composed of a Chairman and four (4) regular Associate in Commerce, but also four-year courses
commissioners, one (1) of whom shall be designated as leading to the degrees of Bachelor of Science in
Vice-Chairman by the President. The Secretary of the Business in Education and Bachelor ofScience in
Department shall be the ex-officio Chairman of the Commerce, and five-year courses leading to the
Commission, while the Vice-Chairman shall act as the degrees of Master of Arts in Business Education and
executive officer of the Commission. Master of Arts in Commerce, respectively.

xxx xxx xxx The appellate court ruled, however, that the PUP and the PCC are not "one
and the same institution" but "two different entities" and that since
§90. Status of Present NAPOLCOM, PC-INP. — Upon petitioner Crisostomo's term was coterminous with the legal existence of the
the effectivity of this Act, the present National Police PCC, petitioner's term expired upon the abolition of the PCC. In reaching
Commission, and the Philippine Constabulary- this conclusion, the Court of Appeals took into account the following:
Integrated National Police shall cease to exist. The
Philippine Constabulary, which is the nucleus of the a) After respondent Crisostomo's suspension, P.D. No.
integrated Philippine Constabulary-Integrated National 1341 (entitled "CONVERTING THE PHILIPPINE
COLLEGE OF COMMERCE INTO A d) The decree moreover transferred to the new
POLYTECHNIC UNIVERSITY, DEFINING ITS university all the properties including "equipment and
OBJECTIVES, ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE facilities":
AND FUNCTIONS, AND EXPANDING ITS
CURRICULAR OFFERINGS") was issued on April 1, ". . . owned by the Philippine
1978. This decree explicitly provides that PUP's College of Commerce and such other National
objectives and purposes cover not only PCC's Schools as may be integrated . . . including
offering of programs "in the field of commerce and their obligations and appropriations . . ." (Sec. 12;
business administration" but also "programs in other emphasis supplied). 3
polytechnic areas" and "in other fields such as
agriculture, arts and trades and fisheries . . ." (Section But these are hardly indicia of an intent to abolish an existing institution and
2). Being a university, PUP was conceived as a bigger to create a new one. New course offerings can be added to the
institution absorbing, merging and integrating the entire curriculum of a school without affecting its legal existence. Nor will
PCC and other "national schools" as may be changes in its existing structure and organization bring about its abolition
"transferred" to this new state university. and the creation of a new one. Only an express declaration to that effect by
the lawmaking authority will.
b) The manner of selection and appointment of the
university head is substantially different from that The Court of Appeals also cites the provision of P.D. No. 1341 as allegedly
provided by the PCC Charter. The PUP President "shall implying the abolition of the PCC and the creation of a new one — the PUP
be appointed by the President of the Philippines upon — in its stead:
recommendation of the Secretary of Education and
Culture after consultation with the University
Board ofRegents" (Section 4, P.D. 1341). The §12. All parcels of land, buildings, equipment and
President of PCC, on the other hand, was appointed "by facilities owned by the Philippine
the President of the Philippines upon College of Commerce and such other national schools
recommendation of the Board ofTrustees" (Section as may be integrated by virtue of this decree, including
4, R.A. 778). their obligations and appropriations thereof, shall stand
transferred to the Polytechnic University of the
Philippines, provided, however, that said national
c) The composition of the new university's schools shall continue to receive their corresponding
Board of Regents is likewise different from that of the shares from the special education fund of the
PCC Board of Trustees (which included the municipal/provincial/city government concerned as are
chairman of the Senate Committee on Education and now enjoyed by them in accordance with existing laws
the chairman of the House Committee on Education, and/or decrees.
the President of the PCC Alumni Association as well as
the President of the Chamber of Commerce of the
Philippines). Whereas, among others, the NEDA The law does not state that the lands, buildings and equipment owned by the
Director-General, the Secretary of Industry and the PCC were being "transferred" to the PUP but only that they "stand
Secretary of Labor are members ofthe PUP transferred" to it. "Stand transferred" simply means, for example, that lands
Board of Regents. (Section 6, P.D. 1341). transferred to the PCC were to be understood as transferred to the PUP as
the new name of the institution.
But the reinstatement of petitioner to the position of president of the PUP became entitled only to retirement benefits or the payment ofseparation pay.
could not be ordered by the trial court because on June 10, 1978, P.D. No. Petitioner must have recognized this fact, that is why in 1992 he asked then
1437 had been promulgated fixing the term of office of presidents of state President Aquino to consider him for appointment to the same position after
universities and colleges at six (6) years, renewable for another term of six it had become vacant in consequence of the retirement of Dr. Prudente.
(6) years, and authorizing the Presidentof the Philippines to terminate the
terms of incumbents who were not reappointed. P.D. No. 1437 provides: WHEREFORE, the decision of the Court of Appeals is MODIFIED by
SETTING ASIDE the questioned orders of the Regional
§6. The head of the university or college shall be Trial Court directing the reinstatement of the petitioner Isabelo
known as the President of the university or college. He T. Crisostomo to the position of president of the Polytechnic
shall be qualified for the position and appointed for a University of the Philippines and the payment to him of salaries and
term of six (6) years by the President of the Philippines benefits which he failed to receive during his suspension in so far as such
upon recommendation of the Secretary of Education payment would include salaries accruing after March 28, 1980 when
and Culture after consulting with the Board which may petitioner Crisostomo's term was terminated. Further proceedings in
be renewed for another term upon accordance with this decision may be taken by the trial court to determine
recommendation of the Secretary of Education and the amount due and payable to petitioner by the university up to March 28,
Culture after consulting the Board. In case of vacancy 1980.
by reason of death, absence or resignation, the
Secretary of Education and Culture shall have the
authority to designate an officer in charge of the college
or university pending the appointment of the President. SO ORDERED.

The powers and duties of the President of the university Regalado, Romero and Torres, JJ ., concur.
or college, in addition to those specifically provided for
in this Decree shall be those usually pertaining to the
office of the president of a university or college. Puno, J ., took no part.

§7. The incumbent president of a chartered state college


or university whose term may be terminated according
to this Decree, shall be entitled to full retirement Footnotes
benefits: provided that he has served the government
for at least twenty (20) years and provided, further that
in case the number of years served is less than 20 years,
he shall be entitled to one month pay for every *The original title of this case, "Hon. Teresita Dy-Liaco Flores, as
year of service. Presiding Judge, RTC, Branch 46, Manila, Elmer R. Melgas, as
Sheriff IV of Manila and Isabelo T. Crisostomo, petitioners, v.
In this case, Dr. Pablo T. Mateo Jr., who had been acting president of the The Court of Appeals and the People of the Philippines,
university since April 3, 1979, was appointed president of PUP for a respondents," has been changed by omitting the names of the
term of six (6) years on March 28, 1980, with the result that petitioner's first two petitioners who were merely nominal parties in
term was cut short. In accordance with §7 of the law, therefore, petitioner the Court of Appeals.
1.Judgment in CCC-VI-2329-2331, pp. 2-3.

2.Per Justice Lorna Lombos-De la Fuente, chairman, and concurred in by


Justices Cesar D. Francisco and Cancio C. Garcia, members.

3.Rollo, p. 148, Decision, p. 4.


undue legislation by President Estrada and the questioned memoranda
reassigned all Bureau of Physical Education and School Sports (BPESS)
personnel named in the DECS Memoranda to various offices within the
FIRST DIVISION DECS. ECcDAH

[G.R. No. 142283. February 6, 2003.] The subsequent enactment of RA 9155 abolishing the BPESS and
transferring the DECS' functions relating to sports competition to the PSC
has rendered the petition moot and academic. Also, petitioners admit
ROSA LIGAYA C. DOMINGO, ROMEO M. that RA 9155 now explicitly provides for the protection of their right to
FERNANDEZ, VICTORIA S. ESTRADA, security of tenure.
JULIETA C. FAJARDO, ADELAIDA B.
GAWIRAN, MARCIANO M. SERVO, VICTORIA
S. DAOANG, FELICIANO N. TOLEDO III, SYLLABUS
JAYNELYN D. FLORES, MA. LIZA B. LLOREN,
ROMELIA A. CONTAPAY, MARIVIC B.
1. POLITICAL LAW; ADMINISTRATIVE CODE OF 1987; EO 81 IS A
TOLITOL, PAZ LEVITA G. VILLANUEVA,
VALID EXERCISE OF THE PRESIDENT'S DELEGATED POWER TO
EDITHA C. HERNANDEZ, JOSE HERNANDEZ,
REORGANIZE THE OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT. — Executive Order
JR., VERONICA C. BELLES, AMELITA S. BUCE,
No. 292 ("EO 292" for brevity), otherwise known as the Administrative
MERCELITA C. MARANAN, CRISTITUTO C.
Code of 1987, expressly grants the President continuing authority to
LLOREN, HERNANDO M. EVANGELISTA, and
reorganize the Office of the President. Under Section 31. . . Since EO 81 is
CARLOS BACAY, JR., petitioners, vs. HON.
based on the President's continuing authority under Section 31 (2) and (3)
RONALDO D. ZAMORA, in his capacity as the
of EO 292, EO 81 is a valid exercise of the President's delegated power to
Executive Secretary, HON. ANDREW B.
reorganize the Office of the President. The law grants the President this
GONZALES, in his capacity as the Secretary of
power in recognition of the recurring need of every President to reorganize
Education, and HON. CARLOS D. TUASON, in his
his office "to achieve simplicity, economy and efficiency." The Office of the
capacity as the Chairman of the Philippine Sports
President is the nerve center of the Executive Branch. To remain effective
Commission, respondents.
and efficient, the Office of the President must be capable of being shaped
and reshaped by the President in the manner he deems fit to carry out his
The Law Firm of Nitorreda and Nasser for petitioners. directives and policies. After all, the Office of the President is the command
post of the President. This is the rationale behind the President's continuing
Solicitor General for respondents. authority to reorganize the administrative structure of the Office of the
President. Petitioners' contention that the DECS is not part of the Office of
the President is immaterial. Under EO 292, the DECS is indisputably a
SYNOPSIS Department of the Executive Branch. Even if the DECS is not part of the
Office of the President, Section 31 (2) and (3) of EO 292 clearly authorizes
Petition for certiorari seeking to nullify EO No. 81 and Memoranda Nos. the President to transfer any function or agency of the DECS to the Office
01592 and 01594 issued pursuant thereto, which transferred the sports of the President. Under its charter, the PSC is attached to the Office of the
development programs and activities of the DECS to the Philippine Sports President. Therefore, the President has the authority to transfer the
Commission (PSC). Petitioners claimed that EO 81 is void for being an "functions, programs and activities of DECS related to sports development"
to the PSC, making EO 81 a valid presidential issuance. acTDCI
2. ID.; ID.; ID.; DISTINGUISHED FROM THE PRESIDENT'S POWER Physical Education and School Sports ("BPESS" for brevity) personnel
TO REORGANIZE THE OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT PROPER; CASE named in the DECS Memoranda to various offices within the DECS.
AT BAR. — However, the President's power to reorganize the Office of the
President under Section 31 (2) and (3) of EO 292 should be distinguished The Facts
from his power to reorganize the Office of the President Proper. Under
Section 31 (1) of EO 292, the President can reorganize the Office of the On March 5, 1999, former President Joseph E. Estrada issued Executive
President Proper by abolishing, consolidating or merging units, or Order No. 81 3 ("EO 81" for brevity) entitled "Transferring the Sports
by transferring functions from one unit to another. In contrast, under Programs and Activities of the Department of Education, Culture and Sports
Section 31 (2) and (3) of EO 292, the President's power to reorganize to the Philippine Sports Commission and Defining the Role of DECS in
offices outside the Office of the President Proper but still within the Office School-Based Sports."
of the President is limited to merely transferring functions or agencies from
the Office of the President to Departments or Agencies, and vice versa. This
distinction is crucial as it affects the security of tenure of employees. The EO 81 provided thus:
abolition of an office in good faith necessarily results in the employee's
cessation in office, but in such event there is no dismissal or separation "Section 1. Transferring the Sports Program and
because the office itself ceases to exist. On the other hand, the transfer of Activities to the PSC. All the functions, programs and
functions or agencies does not result in the employee's cessation in office activities of DECS related to sports development as
because his office continues to exist although in another department, agency provided for in Sec. 16 of EO 117 (s. 1987) are hereby
or office. In the instant case, the BPESS employees who were not transferred to PSC.
transferred to PSC were at first temporarily, then later permanently
reassigned to other offices of the DECS, ensuring their continued Section 2. Defining the Role of DECS in School-Based
employment. At any rate, RA 9155 now mandates that these employees Sports. The DECS shall have jurisdiction and function
"shall be retained by the Department." over the enhancement of Physical Education (P.E.)
curriculum and its application in whatever form inside
schools.
DECISION
Section 3. The Role of PSC. As the primary agency
tasked to formulate policies and oversee the national
CARPIO, J p: sports development program, the management and
implementation of all school-based sports competitions
The Case among schools at the district, provincial, regional,
national and international levels, in coordination with
This is a petition for certiorari and prohibition 1 with prayer for temporary concerned public and private entities shall be
restraining order seeking to nullify Executive Order No. 81 and Memoranda transferred to the PSC."
Nos. 01592 and 01594. 2The assailed executive order transferred the sports
development programs and activities of the Department of Education, Pursuant to EO 81, former DECS Secretary Andrew B. Gonzales
Culture and Sports ("DECS" for brevity) to the Philippine Sports ("Secretary Gonzales" for brevity) issued Memorandum No. 01592 on
Commission ("PSC" for brevity). The questioned memoranda ("DECS January 10, 2000. Memorandum No. 01592 temporarily reassigned, in the
Memoranda" for brevity), on the other hand, reassigned all Bureau of exigency of the service, all remaining BPESS Staff to other divisions or
bureaus of the DECS effective March 15, 2000.
On January 21, 2000, Secretary Gonzales issued Memorandum No. 01594 The Issue
reassigning the BPESS staff named in the Memorandum to various offices
within the DECS effective March 15, 2000. Petitioners were among the The issue to resolve is whether EO 81 and the DECS Memoranda are valid.
BPESS personnel affected by Memorandum No. 01594. Dissatisfied with
their reassignment, petitioners filed the instant petition. The Court's Ruling

In their Petition, petitioners argue that EO 81 is void and unconstitutional We dismiss this petition for being moot and academic.
for being an undue legislation by President Estrada. Petitioners maintain
that the President's issuance of EO 81 violated the principle of separation of
powers. Petitioners also challenge the DECS Memoranda for violating their As manifested by both petitioners 4 and respondents, 5 the subsequent
right to security of tenure. enactment of RA 9155 has rendered the issues in the present case moot and
academic. Since RA 9155abolished the BPESS and transferred the DECS'
functions relating to sports competition to the PSC, petitioners now admit
Petitioners seek to nullify EO 81 and the DECS Memoranda. Petitioners that "it is no longer plausible to raise any ultra viresassumption by the PSC
pray that this Court prohibit the PSC from performing functions related to of the functions of the BPESS." 6 Moreover, since RA 9155 provides that
school sports development. Petitioners further pray that, upon filing of the BPESS personnel not transferred to the PSC shall be retained by the DECS,
petition, this Court issue a temporary restraining order against respondents petitioners now accept that "the law explicitly protects and
to desist from implementing EO 81. preserves" 7 their right to security of tenure.

During the pendency of the case, Republic Act No. 9155 ("RA 9155" for
brevity), otherwise known as the "Governance of Basic Education Act of
2001," was enacted on August 11, 2001. RA 9155 expressly abolished the
BPESS and transferred the functions, programs and activities of the DECS Although the issue is already academic, its significance constrains the Court
relating to sports competition to the PSC. The pertinent provision thereof to point out that Executive Order No. 292 ("EO 292" for brevity), otherwise
reads: known as theAdministrative Code of 1987, expressly grants the President
continuing authority to reorganize the Office of the President. Section 31
of EO 292 provides:
"SEC. 9. Abolition of BPESS. — All functions,
programs and activities of the Department of Education
related to sports competition shall be transferred to the "SEC. 31. Continuing Authority of the President to
Philippine Sports Commission (PSC). The Program for Reorganize his Office. — The President, subject to the
school sports and physical fitness shall remain part of policy in the Executive Office and in order to achieve
the basic education curriculum. simplicity, economy and efficiency, shall have
continuing authority to reorganize the administrative
structure of the Office of the President. For this
The Bureau of Physical Education and School Sports purpose, he may take any of the following actions:
(BPESS) is hereby abolished. The personnel of the
BPESS, presently detailed with the PSC, are hereby
transferred to the PSC without loss of rank, including (1) Restructure the internal organization of the Office of
the plantilla positions they occupy. All other BPESS the President Proper, including the immediate Offices,
personnel shall be retained by the Department." the Presidential Special Assistants/Advisers System and
the Common Support System, by abolishing,
consolidating or merging units thereof or transferring power to reorganize the Office of the President Proper. Under Section 31
functions from one unit to another; (1) of EO 292, the President can reorganize the Office of the
President Proper by abolishing, consolidating or mergingunits, or
(2) Transfer any function under the Office of the by transferring functions from one unit to another. In contrast, under
President to any other Department or Agency as well Section 31 (2) and (3) of EO 292, the President's power to reorganize
as transfer functions agencies to the Office of the offices outside the Office of the President Proper but still within the Office
President from other Departments or Agencies;" and of the President is limited to merely transferring functions or agencies from
the Office of the President to Departments or Agencies, and vice versa.
(3) Transfer any agency under the Office of the
President to any other department or agency as well This distinction is crucial as it affects the security of tenure of employees.
as transfer agencies to the Office of the President The abolition of an office in good faith necessarily results in the employee's
from other Departments or Agencies;"(Emphasis cessation in office, but in such event there is no dismissal or separation
supplied.) because the office itself ceases to exist. 11 On the other hand, the transfer of
functions or agencies does not result in the employee's cessation in office
Since EO 81 is based on the President's continuing authority under Section because his office continues to exist although in another department, agency
31 (2) and (3) of EO 292, 8 EO 81 is a valid exercise of the President's or office. In the instant case, the BPESS employees who were not
delegated power to reorganize the Office of the President. The law grants transferred to PSC were at first temporarily, then later permanently
the President this power in recognition of the recurring need of every reassigned to other offices of the DECS, ensuring their continued
President to reorganize his office "to achieve simplicity, economy and employment. At any rate, RA 9155 now mandates that these employees
efficiency." The Office of the President is the nerve center of the Executive "shall be retained by the Department." SaIHDA
Branch. To remain effective and efficient, the Office of the President must
be capable of being shaped and reshaped by the President in the manner he WHEREFORE, the instant petition is DISMISSED. No pronouncement as
deems fit to carry out his directives and policies. After all, the Office of the to costs.
President is the command post of the President. This is the rationale behind
the President's continuing authority to reorganize the administrative SO ORDERED.
structure of the Office of the President.
Davide, Jr., C.J., Vitug and Azcuna, JJ., concur.
Petitioners' contention that the DECS is not part of the Office of the
President is immaterial. Under EO 292, the DECS is indisputably a Ynares-Santiago, J., took no part.
Department of the Executive Branch. Even if the DECS is not part of the
Office of the President, Section 31 (2) and (3) of EO 292 clearly authorizes Footnotes
the President to transfer any function or agency of the DECS to the Office
of the President. Under its charter, the PSC is attached to the Office of the
President. 9 Therefore, the President has the authority to transfer the 1.Under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court.
"functions, programs and activities of DECS related to sports
development" 10 to the PSC, making EO 81 a valid presidential issuance. 2.Issued by then Department of Education Secretary Andrew B.
Gonzales.
However, the President's power to reorganize the Office of the President
under Section 31 (2) and (3) of EO 292 should be distinguished from his 3.Co-signed by former Executive Secretary Ronaldo D. Zamora.
4.Rollo, p. 106, Petitioners' Reply to Comments, p. 12.

5.Ibid., p. 137, Memorandum for Respondents, p. 7.

6.Supra, see note 4.

7.Supra, see note 4.

8.The preamble of EO 81 provides:

"xxx xxx xxx

WHEREAS, paragraph 2, Section 31, Chapter 10, Title III, Book III of
the Administrative Code of 1987 grants the President the
continuing authority to reorganize the Office of the President by,
among others, transferring any function, to include certain
programs, from other Departments and/or Agencies to the Office
of the President."

9.Section 4 of RA 6847 provides:

"Status of the Commission. — The Commission shall have the same


status as that of a governmental regulatory national agency
attached to the Office of the President with the Chairman thereof
being of the same level as a department undersecretary and the
Commissioners that of department assistant secretaries."

10.Section 1, EO 81.

11.Dario v. Mison, 176 SCRA 84 (1989).\