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1) Imbong v COMELEC GR L 32432 35 SCRA 28 September 11 1970

Facts: Manuel Imbong and Raul Gonzales, filing separate cases and both interested in running as
candidates for delegates to the Constitutional Convention, question the constitutionality of R.A.
No. 6132, claiming that it prejudices their rights as such candidates. On March 16, 1967, the
Congress, acting as a Constituent Assembly, passed Res. No. 2 which called for a Constitutional
Convention which shall have two delegates from each representative district. On June 17, 1969,
the Congress passed Resolution No. 4 amending Resolution No. 2 by providing that the
convention shall be composed of 320 delegates with at least two delegates from each
representative district. On August 24, 1970, the Congress, acting as a legislative body, enacted
R.A. 6132, implementing Res Nos. 2 and 4 and expressly repealing R.A 4914 which previously
implemented Res. No. 2. Gonzales assails the validity of Sections 2, 4, 5, and par. 1 of 8(a), and
the entire law, while Imbong questions the constitutionality of par. 1 of Sec. 8(a) of said R.A.
Issues: Whether or not, Congress has the right to call for a constitutional convention and set the
parameters of such convention; and
Whether or not, the provision of the R.A. 6132 is constitutional.

Held: The Congress has authority to call a constitutional convention as the constituent assembly.
The Congress also has the authority to enact implementing details, contained in Res. Nos. 2 and
4 and R.A. 6132, since such details are within the competence of the Congress in exercise of its
legislative power.
The provisions are constitutional. Sec. 4 of R.A. 6132 is merely in application with Sec. 2 of Art.
XII of the Constitution and does not constitute a denial of due process or equal protection of the
law. Sec. 2 also merely obeyed the intent of the Congress in Res. Nos. 2 and 4 regarding the
apportionment of delegates. The challenged disqualification of an elected delegate from running
for any public office in Sec. 5 is a valid limitation as it is reasonable and not arbitrary. Lastly, par.
1 of Sec. 8(a) which is both contested by the petitioners is still valid as the restriction contained
in the section is so narrow that basic constitutional rights remain substantially intact and inviolate
thus the limitation is a valid infringement of the constitutional guarantees invoked by the

2) Almario v Alba 127 SCRA 69

Facts: On January 1984, a plebiscite was to be held to allow the voters to either approve or reject
amendments to the Constitution proposed by the Batasang Pambansa. The proposed amendments
are embodied in four (4) separate questions to be answered by simple YES or NO answers.
Alex Almario and some other concerned groups seek to enjoin the submission in the said
plebiscite of Questions No. 3 (“grant” as an additional mode of acquiring lands belonging to the
public domain) and 4 (the undertaking by the government of a land reform program and a social
reform program) to the people for ratification or rejection on the ground that there has been no
fair and proper submission following the doctrine laid down in Tolentino v. COMELEC.
However, unlike in the case of Tolentino vs COMELEC, Almario et al do not seek to prohibit the
holding of the plebiscite but only ask for more time for the people to study the meaning and
implications of the said questions/proposals until the nature and effect of the proposals are fairly
and properly submitted to the electorate.

ISSUE: Whether or not Questions 3 and 4 can be presented to the people on a later date.

HELD: No. This is a political question. The necessity, expediency, and wisdom of the proposed
amendments are beyond the power of the courts to adjudicate. Precisely, whether or not “grant”
of public land and “urban land reform” are unwise or improvident or whether or not the proposed
amendments are unnecessary is a matter which only the people can decide. The questions are
presented for their determination.
Assuming that a member or some members of the Supreme Court may find undesirable any
additional mode of disposing of public land or an urban land reform program, the remedy is to
vote “NO” in the plebiscite but not to substitute his or their aversion to the proposed amendments
by denying to the millions of voters an opportunity to express their own likes or dislikes.
Further, Almario et al have failed to make out a case that the average voter does not know the
meaning of “grant” of public land or of “urban land reform.”

3) Tolentino v COMELEC 41 SCRA 715

Facts: The Constitutional Convention of 1971 scheduled an advance plebiscite concerning only
the proposal to lower the voting age from 21 to 18. This was even before the rest of the draft of
the Constitution (then under revision) had been approved. Arturo Tolentino then filed a motion to
prohibit such plebiscite.

Issues: Whether or not the petition will prosper.

Held: Yes. If the advance plebiscite will be allowed, there will be an improper submission to the
people. Such is not allowed.
The proposed amendments shall be approved by a majority of the votes cast at an election at
which the amendments are submitted to the people for ratification. Election here is singular
which meant that the entire constitution must be submitted for ratification at one plebiscite only.
Furthermore, the people were not given a proper “frame of reference” in arriving at their decision
because they had at the time no idea yet of what the rest of the revised Constitution would
ultimately be and therefore would be unable to assess the proposed amendment in the light of the
entire document. This is the “Doctrine of Submission” which means that all the proposed
amendments to the Constitution shall be presented to the people for the ratification or rejection at
the same time, NOT piecemeal.

4) Santiago v COMELEC 270 SCRA 106

Facts: On 6 Dec 1996, Atty. Jesus S. Delfin filed with COMELEC a “Petition to Amend the
Constitution to Lift Term Limits of elective Officials by People’s Initiative” The COMELEC
then, upon its approval, a.) set the time and dates for signature gathering all over the country, b.)
caused the necessary publication of the said petition in papers of general circulation, and c.)
instructed local election registrars to assist petitioners and volunteers in establishing signing
stations. On 18 Dec 1996, MD Santiago et al filed a special civil action for prohibition against
the Delfin Petition. Santiago argues among others that the People’s Initiative is limited to
amendments to the Constitution NOT a revision thereof. The extension or the lifting of the term
limits of those in power (particularly the President) constitutes revision and is therefore beyond
the power of people’s initiative.

Issues: Whether the proposed Delfin petition constitutes amendment to the constitution or does it
constitute a revision.

Held: The Delfin proposal does not involve a mere amendment to, but a revision of, the
Constitution because, in the words of Fr. Joaquin Bernas, SJ., it would involve a change from a
political philosophy that rejects unlimited tenure to one that accepts unlimited tenure; and
although the change might appear to be an isolated one, it can affect other provisions, such as, on
synchronization of elections and on the State policy of guaranteeing equal access to opportunities
for public service and prohibiting political dynasties. A revision cannot be done by initiative
which, by express provision of Section 2 of Article XVII of the Constitution, is limited to
amendments. The prohibition against reelection of the President and the limits provided for all
other national and local elective officials are based on the philosophy of governance, “to open up
the political arena to as many as there are Filipinos qualified to handle the demands of
leadership, to break the concentration of political and economic powers in the hands of a few,
and to promote effective proper empowerment for participation in policy and decision-making
for the common good”; hence, to remove the term limits is to negate and nullify the noble vision
of the 1987 Constitution.

5) Lambino v COMELEC GR 174153 October 25 2006

Facts: Petitioners (Lambino group) commenced gathering signatures for an initiative petition to
change the 1987 constitution, they filed a petition with the COMELEC to hold a plebiscite that
will ratify their initiative petition under RA 6735. Lambino group alleged that the petition had
the support of 6M individuals fulfilling what was provided by art 17 of the constitution. Their
petition changes the 1987 constitution by modifying sections 1-7 of Art 6 and sections 1-4 of Art
7 and by adding Art 18. the proposed changes will shift the present bicameral- presidential form
of government to unicameral- parliamentary. COMELEC denied the petition due to lack of
enabling law governing initiative petitions and invoked the Santiago Vs. Comelec ruling that RA
6735 is inadequate to implement the initiative petitions.

Issue: Whether or Not the Lambino Group’s initiative petition complies with Section 2, Article
XVII of the Constitution on amendments to the Constitution through a people’s initiative.

Whether or Not this Court should revisit its ruling in Santiago declaring RA 6735 “incomplete,
inadequate or wanting in essential terms and conditions” to implement the initiative clause on
proposals to amend the Constitution.

Whether or Not the COMELEC committed grave abuse of discretion in denying due course to
the Lambino Group’s petition.
Held: According to the SC the Lambino group failed to comply with the basic requirements for
conducting a people’s initiative. The Court held that the COMELEC did not grave abuse of
discretion on dismissing the Lambino petition.

1. The Initiative Petition Does Not Comply with Section 2, Article XVII of the Constitution on
Direct Proposal by the People

The petitioners failed to show the court that the initiative signer must be informed at the time of
the signing of the nature and effect, failure to do so is “deceptive and misleading” which renders
the initiative void.

2. The Initiative Violates Section 2, Article XVII of the Constitution Disallowing Revision
through Initiatives

The framers of the constitution intended a clear distinction between “amendment” and “revision,
it is intended that the third mode of stated in sec 2 art 17 of the constitution may propose only
amendments to the constitution. Merging of the legislative and the executive is a radical change,
therefore a constitutes a revision.

3. A Revisit of Santiago v. COMELEC is Not Necessary

Even assuming that RA 6735 is valid, it will not change the result because the present petition
violated Sec 2 Art 17 to be a valid initiative, must first comply with the constitution before
complying with RA 6735

Petition is dismissed.

6) Manila Prince Hotel v GSIS Manila Hotel Corporation GR 122156 February 3 1997

Facts: The Government Service Insurance System (GSIS), pursuant to the privatization program
of the Philippine Government under Proclamation 50 dated 8 December 1986, decided to sell
through public bidding 30% to 51% of the issued and outstanding shares of the Manila Hotel
(MHC). In a close bidding held on 18 September 1995 only two bidders participated: Manila
Prince Hotel Corporation, a Filipino corporation, which offered to buy 51% of the MHC or
15,300,000 shares at P41.58 per share, and Renong Berhad, a Malaysian firm, with ITT-Sheraton
as its hotel operator, which bid for the same number of shares at P44.00 per share, or P2.42 more
than the bid of petitioner. Pending the declaration of Renong Berhard as the winning
bidder/strategic partner and the execution of the necessary contracts, the Manila Prince Hotel
matched the bid price of P44.00 per share tendered by Renong Berhad in a letter to GSIS dated
28 September 1995. Manila Prince Hotel sent a manager’s check to the GSIS in a subsequent
letter, but which GSIS refused to accept. On 17 October 1995, perhaps apprehensive that GSIS
has disregarded the tender of the matching bid and that the sale of 51% of the MHC may be
hastened by GSIS and consummated with Renong Berhad, Manila Prince Hotel came to the
Court on prohibition and mandamus.
Issues: Whether or not the provisions of the Constitution, particularly Article XII Section 10, are

Held: A provision which lays down a general principle, such as those found in Article II of the
1987 Constitution, is usually not self-executing. But a provision which is complete in itself and
becomes operative without the aid of supplementary or enabling legislation, or that which
supplies sufficient rule by means of which the right it grants may be enjoyed or protected, is self-
executing. Thus a constitutional provision is self-executing if the nature and extent of the right
conferred and the liability imposed are fixed by the constitution itself, so that they can be
determined by an examination and construction of its terms, and there is no language indicating
that the subject is referred to the legislature for action. In self-executing constitutional
provisions, the legislature may still enact legislation to facilitate the exercise of powers directly
granted by the constitution, further the operation of such a provision, prescribe a practice to be
used for its enforcement, provide a convenient remedy for the protection of the rights secured or
the determination thereof, or place reasonable safeguards around the exercise of the right. The
mere fact that legislation may supplement and add to or prescribe a penalty for the violation of a
self-executing constitutional provision does not render such a provision ineffective in the
absence of such legislation. The omission from a constitution of any express provision for a
remedy for enforcing a right or liability is not necessarily an indication that it was not intended to
be self-executing. The rule is that a self-executing provision of the constitution does not
necessarily exhaust legislative power on the subject, but any legislation must be in harmony with
the constitution, further the exercise of constitutional right and make it more available.
Subsequent legislation however does not necessarily mean that the subject constitutional
provision is not, by itself, fully enforceable. As against constitutions of the past, modern
constitutions have been generally drafted upon a different principle and have often become in
effect extensive codes of laws intended to operate directly upon the people in a manner similar to
that of statutory enactments, and the function of constitutional conventions has evolved into one
more like that of a legislative body. Hence, unless it is expressly provided that a legislative act is
necessary to enforce a constitutional mandate, the presumption now is that all provisions of the
constitution are self-executing. If the constitutional provisions are treated as requiring legislation
instead of self-executing, the legislature would have the power to ignore and practically nullify
the mandate of the fundamental law. In fine, Section 10, second paragraph, Art. XII of the 1987
Constitution is a mandatory, positive command which is complete in itself and which needs no
further guidelines or implementing laws or rules for its enforcement. From its very words the
provision does not require any legislation to put it in operation.


1) Dumlao v COMELEC 95 SCRA 392

Facts: Patricio Dumlao was the former governor of Nueva Vizcaya. He has already retired from
his office and he has been receiving retirement benefits therefrom.
In 1980, he filed for reelection to the same office. Meanwhile, Batas Pambansa Blg. 52 was
enacted. This law provides, among others, that retirees from public office like Dumlao are
disqualified to run for office. Dumlao assailed the law averring that it is class legislation hence
unconstitutional. In general, Dumlao invoked equal protection in the eye of the law.
His petition was joined by Atty. Romeo Igot and Alfredo Salapantan, Jr. These two however have
different issues. The suits of Igot and Salapantan are more of a taxpayer’s suit assailing the other
provisions of BP 52 regarding the term of office of the elected officials, the length of the
campaign, and the provision which bars persons charged for crimes from running for public
office as well as the provision that provides that the mere filing of complaints against them after
preliminary investigation would already disqualify them from office.

Issue: Whether or not Dumlao, Igot, and Salapantan have a cause of action.

Held: No. The SC pointed out the procedural lapses of this case for this case should have never
been merged. Dumlao’s issue is different from Igot’s. They have separate issues. Further, this
case does not meet all the requisites so that it’d be eligible for judicial review. There are
standards that have to be followed in the exercise of the function of judicial review, namely: (1)
the existence of an appropriate case; (2) an interest personal and substantial by the party raising
the constitutional question; (3) the plea that the function be exercised at the earliest opportunity;
and (4) the necessity that the constitutional question be passed upon in order to decide the case.
In this case, only the 3rd requisite was met.
The SC ruled however that the provision barring persons charged for crimes may not run for
public office and that the filing of complaints against them and after preliminary investigation
would already disqualify them from office as null and void.
The assertion that BP 52 is contrary to the safeguard of equal protection is neither well taken.
The constitutional guarantee of equal protection of the laws is subject to rational classification. If
the groupings are based on reasonable and real differentiations, one class can be treated and
regulated differently from another class. For purposes of public service, employees 65 years of
age, have been validly classified differently from younger employees. Employees attaining that
age are subject to compulsory retirement, while those of younger ages are not so compulsorily
In respect of election to provincial, city, or municipal positions, to require that candidates should
not be more than 65 years of age at the time they assume office, if applicable to everyone, might
or might not be a reasonable classification although, as the Solicitor General has intimated, a
good policy of the law should be to promote the emergence of younger blood in our political
elective echelons. On the other hand, it might be that persons more than 65 years old may also be
good elective local officials.
Retirement from government service may or may not be a reasonable disqualification for elective
local officials. For one thing, there can also be retirees from government service at ages, say
below 65. It may neither be reasonable to disqualify retirees, aged 65, for a 65-year old retiree
could be a good local official just like one, aged 65, who is not a retiree.
But, in the case of a 65-year old elective local official (Dumalo), who has retired from a
provincial, city or municipal office, there is reason to disqualify him from running for the same
office from which he had retired, as provided for in the challenged provision.

2) PhilConsa v Villareal 56 SCRA 477

Facts: On May 15, 1971, the petitioner, Philippine Constitution Association, joined by other
petitioners, filed a motion to the court for a writ to be issued that orders respondent Cornelio T.
Villareal, in his capacity as Speaker of the then House of Representatives, the Chief Accountant
thereof, as well as its Auditor, to inspect and examine the books, records, vouchers and other
supporting papers of the House of Representatives that have relevance to the alleged transfer of
P26.2 million from various executive offices to the House of Representatives as well as its
books, records, vouchers and other supporting papers dealing with the original outlay of the P39
million as appropriated for the 1969-1970 fiscal year.
Issues: Whether or not, there was lack of jurisdiction under the theory of separation of powers,
absence of a cause of action, lack of legal personality to sue, nonjoinder of indispensable parties
as well as the mischievous consequences to which a suit of such character would give rise.
Held: Yes, as there is no need, however, to pass on the merits of the various legal issues raised as
in accordance with the ruling in Philippine Constitution Association, Inc. v. Gimenez, 3
promulgated on February 28, 1974, a suit of this character has become moot and academic with
the effectivity of the present Constitution and the consequent abolition of the House of
Representatives. It may not be amiss to quote this excerpt from the resolution declaring moot and
academic the above case against Auditor General Gimenez: "Parenthetically, it is to be observed
that such difficulty need not attend a petition of this character if filed now in view of the specific
provision in the present Constitution: 'The records and books of accounts of the National
Assembly shall be open to the public in accordance with law, and such books shall be audited by
the Commission on Audit which shall publish annually the itemized expenditures for each
Member.' " The case is moot and academic.

3) Tijam v Sibonghanoy 33 SCRA 29

Facts: The action at bar, which is a suit for collection of a sum of money in the sum of exactly P
1,908.00, exclusive of interest filed by Serafin Tijam and Felicitas Tagalog against Spouses
Magdaleno Sibonghanoy and Lucia Baguio, was originally instituted in the Court of First
Instance of Cebu on July 19, 1948. A month prior to the filing of the complaint, the Judiciary Act
of 1948 (R.A. 296) took effect depriving the Court of First Instance of original jurisdiction over
cases in which the demand, exclusive of interest, is not more than P 2,000.00 (Secs. 44[c] and
86[b], R.A. 296.)

The case has already been pending now for almost 15 years, and throughout the entire
proceeding the appellant never raised the question of jurisdiction until the receipt of the Court of
Appeals' adverse decision.

Considering that the Supreme Court has the exclusive appellate jurisdiction over all cases in
which jurisdiction of any inferior court is in issue, the Court of Appeals certified the case to the
Supreme Court along with the records of the case.

Issue: Whether or not the appellant's motion to dismiss on the ground of lack of jurisdiction of
the Court of First Instance during the pendency of the appeal will prosper.

Held: A party may be estopped or barred from raising a question in different ways and for
different reasons. Thus we speak of estoppel in pais, or estoppel by deed or by record, and of
estoppel by laches.
Laches, in a general sense is failure or neglect, for an unreasonable and unexplained length of
time, to do that which, by exercising due diligence, could or should have been done earlier; it is
negligence or omission to assert a right within a reasonable time, warranting a presumption that
the party entitled to assert it either has abandoned it or declined to assert it.

The doctrine of laches or of "stale demands" is based upon grounds of public policy which
requires, for the peace of society, the discouragement of stale claims and, unlike the statute of
limitations, is not a mere question of time but is principally a question of the inequity or
unfairness of permitting a right or claim to be enforced or asserted.

It has been held that a party can not invoke the jurisdiction of a court to sure affirmative relief
against his opponent and, after obtaining or failing to obtain such relief, repudiate or question
that same jurisdiction (Dean vs. Dean, 136 Or. 694, 86 A.L.R. 79). In the case just cited, by way
of explaining the rule, it was further said that the question whether the court had jurisdiction
either of the subject-matter of the action or of the parties was not important in such cases because
the party is barred from such conduct not because the judgment or order of the court is valid and
conclusive as an adjudication, but for the reason that such a practice can not be tolerated —
obviously for reasons of public policy.

Furthermore, it has also been held that after voluntarily submitting a cause and encountering an
adverse decision on the merits, it is too late for the loser to question the jurisdiction or power of
the court (Pease vs. Rathbun-Jones etc., 243 U.S. 273, 61 L. Ed. 715, 37 S. Ct. 283; St. Louis etc.
vs. McBride, 141 U.S. 127, 35 L. Ed. 659). And in Littleton vs. Burgess, 16 Wyo. 58, the Court
said that it is not right for a party who has affirmed and invoked the jurisdiction of a court in a
particular matter to secure an affirmative relief, to afterwards deny that same jurisdiction to
escape a penalty.

Upon this same principle is what We said in the three cases mentioned in the resolution of the
Court of Appeals of May 20, 1963 (supra) — to the effect that we frown upon the "undesirable
practice" of a party submitting his case for decision and then accepting the judgment, only if
favorable, and attacking it for lack of jurisdiction, when adverse — as well as in Pindañgan etc.
vs. Dans, et al., G.R. L-14591, September 26, 1962; Montelibano, et al., vs. Bacolod-Murcia
Milling Co., Inc., G.R. L-15092; Young Men Labor Union etc. vs. The Court of Industrial
Relation et al., G.R. L-20307, Feb. 26, 1965, and Mejia vs. Lucas, 100 Phil. p. 277.

The facts of this case show that from the time the Surety became a quasi-party on July 31, 1948,
it could have raised the question of the lack of jurisdiction of the Court of First Instance of Cebu
to take cognizance of the present action by reason of the sum of money involved which,
according to the law then in force, was within the original exclusive jurisdiction of inferior
courts. It failed to do so. Instead, at several stages of the proceedings in the court a quo as well as
in the Court of Appeals, it invoked the jurisdiction of said courts to obtain affirmative relief and
submitted its case for a final adjudication on the merits. It was only after an adverse decision was
rendered by the Court of Appeals that it finally woke up to raise the question of jurisdiction.
Were we to sanction such conduct on its part, We would in effect be declaring as useless all the
proceedings had in the present case since it was commenced on July 19, 1948 and compel the
judgment creditors to go up their Calvary once more. The inequity and unfairness of this is not
only patent but revolting.

Coming now to the merits of the appeal: after going over the entire record, We have become
persuaded that We can do nothing better than to quote in toto, with approval, the decision
rendered by the Court of Appeals x x x granting plaintiffs' motion for execution against the
surety x x x

UPON ALL THE FOREGOING, the orders appealed from are hereby affirmed, with costs
against the appellant Manila Surety and Fidelity Company, Inc.

4) Zandueta v De la Costa 66 Phil 115

Facts: Prior to the promulgation of Commonwealth Act No.145, the petitioner, the Honorable
Francisco Zandueta was discharging the office of judge of first instance, Ninth Judicial District,
comprising solely the City of Manila, and was presiding over the Fifth Branch of the Court of
First Instance of said city, by virtue of an ad interim appointment issued by the President of the
Philippines in his favor on June 2, 1936, and confirmed by the Commission on Appointments of
the National Assembly-On November 7, 1936, the date on which Commonwealth Act No. 145,
otherwise known as the Judicial Reorganization Law, took effect, the petitioner received from the
President of the Commonwealth a new ad interim appointment as judge of first instance, this
time of the Fourth Judicial District, with authority to preside over the Courts of First Instance of
Manila and Palawan-The National Assembly adjourned without its Commission on
Appointments having acted on said ad interim
appointment-Another ad interim appointment to the same office was issued in favor of said
petitioner, pursuant to which he took a new oath-After his appointment and qualification as judge
of first instance of the Fourth Judicial District, the petitioner, acting as executive judge,
performed several executive acts-On May 19, 1938, the Commission on Appointments of the
National Assembly disapproved the aforesaid ad interim appointment of said petitioner-On
August 1, 1938, the President of the Philippines appointed the herein respondent, Honorable
Sixto de la Costa, judge of first instance of the Fourth Judicial District, with authority to preside
over the Fifth Branch of the Court of First Instance of Manila and the Court of First Instance of
Palawan, and his appointment was approved by the Commission on Appointments

Issue: Whether or not, the petitioner may question the validity of Commonwealth Act No. 145 to
entitle him to repossess the office occupied by him prior to the appointment issued in his favor
by virtue of the assailed statute

Held: When a judge of first instance, presiding over a branch of a Court of First Instance of a
judicial district by virtue of a legal and valid appointment, accepts another appointment to
preside over the same branch of the same Court of First Instance, in addition to another court of
the same category, both of which belong to a new judicial district formed by the addition of
another Court of First Instance to the old one, enters into the discharge of the functions of his
new office and receives the corresponding salary, he abandons his old office and cannot claim to
repossess it or question the constitutionality of the law by virtue of which his new appointment
has been issued.
The rule of equity, sanctioned by jurisprudence, is that when a public official voluntarily accepts
an appointment to an office newly created or reorganized by law, —which new office is
incompatible with the one formerly occupied by him — , qualifies for the discharge of the
functions thereof by taking the necessary oath, and enters into the performance of his duties by
executing acts inherent in said newly created or reorganized office and receiving the
corresponding salary, he will be considered to have abandoned the office he was occupying by
virtue of his former appointment (46Corpus Juris, 947, sec. 55), and he cannot question the
constitutionality of the law by virtue of which he was last appointed (11 American Jurisprudence,
166, par. 121;id., 767, par. 123). He is excepted from said rule only when his non-acceptance of
the new appointment may affect public interest or when he is compelled to accept it by reason of
legal exigencies. In the case under consideration, the petitioner was free to accept or not the ad
interim appointment issued by the President of the Commonwealth in his favor, in accordance
with said Commonwealth Act No. 145. If the petitioner believed that Commonwealth Act No.145
is unconstitutional, he should have refused to accept the appointment offered him or, at least, he
should have accepted it with reservation, had he believed that his duty of obedience to the laws
compelled him to do so, and afterwards resort to the power entrusted with the final determination
of the question whether a law is unconstitutional or not.-The petitioner, being aware of his
constitutional and legal rights and obligations, by implied order of the law(art. 2, Civil Code),
accepted the office and entered into the performance of the duties inherent therein, after taking
the necessary oath, thereby acting with full knowledge that if he voluntarily accepted the office
to which he was appointed, he would later be stopped from questioning the validity of said
appointment by alleging that the law, by virtue of which his appointment was issued, is
unconstitutional. The petition for quo warranto instituted is denied and the same is dismissed
with costs to the petitioner.

5) Manila Motors Co v Flores 99 Phil 738

Facts: The Manila Motor Company filed a complaint in the Municipal court of Manila to recover
from Manuel Flores the amount of Php 1, 047.98 as chattel mortgage installments which fell due
in September 1941. Defendant pleaded prescription, 1941 to 1954. The complaint was
dismissed. Manila Motor Company then filed an appeal before the CFI with the contention that
moratorium laws (3 years to 8 months) had interrupted the running of the prescriptive period, and
that deducting the time during the operation of the law. Hence, the 10 – year term had not yet
elapsed when the complainant sued in 1954.
On the other hand, the defendant contended that moratorium laws did not suspend the period of
limitations because it is unconstitutional; and when a statute is adjudged unconstitutional, it is as
inoperative as if it had never been passed, and no rights can be built upon it.

Issue: Whether or not, the moratorium law suspended the period of prescription.

Held: The court decided in favor of the petitioners. Although it has been ruled in the Esteban’s
case that the moratorium law is unconstitutional, are several instances wherein courts, our of
equity, have relaxed its operation or qualified its effects since the actual existence of a statute
prior to such declaration is an operative fact, and may have consequences which cannot justly be
ignored and a realistic approach is eroding the general doctrine.
6) Lozada v COMELEC 120 SCRA 337

Facts: Jose Mari Eulalio Lozada together with Romeo Igot filed a petition for mandamus
compelling the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) to hold an election to fill the vacancies in
the Interim Batasang Pambansa (IBP). They anchor their contention on Section 5 (2), Art. VIII of
the 1973 Constitution which provides:
In case a vacancy arises in the Batasang Pambansa eighteen months or more before a regular
election, the Commission on Election shall call a special election to be held within sixty (60)
days after the vacancy occurs to elect the Member to serve the unexpired term.
COMELEC opposed the petition alleging that 1) petitioners lack standing to file the instant
petition for they are not the proper parties to institute the action; 2) the Supreme Court has no
jurisdiction to entertain the petition; and 3) Section 5(2), Article VIII of the 1973 Constitution
does not apply to the Interim Batasan Pambansa.

Issues: Whether or not the SC can compel COMELEC to hold a special election to fill vacancies
in the legislature.

Held: No, as the SC’s jurisdiction over the COMELEC is only to review by certiorari the latter’s
decision, orders or rulings. This is as clearly provided in Article XII-C, Section 11 of the New
Constitution which reads:
Any decision, order, or ruling of the Commission may be brought to the Supreme Court on
certiorari by the aggrieved party within thirty days from his receipt of a copy thereof.
There is in this case no decision, order or ruling of the COMELEC which is sought to be
reviewed by this Court under its certiorari jurisdiction as provided for in the aforequoted
provision, which is the only known provision conferring jurisdiction or authority on the Supreme
Court over the COMELEC.
It is obvious that the holding of special elections in several regional districts where vacancies
exist, would entail huge expenditure of money. Only the Batasang Pambansa (BP) can make the
necessary appropriation for the purpose, and this power of the BP may neither be subject to
mandamus by the courts much less may COMELEC compel the BP to exercise its power of
appropriation. From the role BP has to play in the holding of special elections, which is to
appropriate the funds for the expenses thereof, it would seem that the initiative on the matter
must come from the BP, not the COMELEC, even when the vacancies would occur in the regular
not IBP. The power to appropriate is the sole and exclusive prerogative of the legislative body,
the exercise of which may not be compelled through a petition for mandamus. What is more, the
provision of Section 5(2), Article VIII of the Constitution was intended to apply to vacancies in
the regular National Assembly, now BP, not to the IBP.

7) De Agbayani v PNB 38 SCRA 429

Facts: Plaintiff obtained a loan from PNB dated July 19, 1939, maturing on July 19, 1944,
secured by real estate mortgage. On July 13 1959 or 15 years after maturity of the loan,
defendant instituted extra-judicial foreclosure proceedings for the recovery of the balance of the
loan remaining unpaid. Plaintiff countered with his suit against both alleging that the mortgage
sought to be foreclosed had long prescribed, fifteen years having elapsed from the date of
maturity. PNB on the other hand claims that the defense of prescription would not be available if
the period from March 10, 1945, when Executive Order No. 32 1 was issued, to July 26, 1948,
when the subsequent legislative act 2 extending the period of moratorium was declared invalid,
were to be deducted from the computation of the time during which the bank took no legal steps
for the recovery of the loan. The lower court did not find such contention persuasive and decided
the suit in favor of plaintiff.

Issues: Whether or not, the period of the effectivity of EO 32 and the Act extending the
Moratorium Law before the same were declared invalid tolled the period of prescription (Effect
of the declaration of Unconstitutionality of a law).
Held: Yes, that is, in the language of an American Supreme Court decision: “The actual existence
of a statute, prior to such a determination [of unconstitutionality], is an operative fact and may
have consequences which cannot justly be ignored. The past cannot always be erased by a new
judicial declaration. The effect of the subsequent ruling as to invalidity may have to be
considered in various aspects, with respect to particular relations, individual and corporate, and
particular conduct, private and official.” 4
The now prevailing principle is that the existence of a statute or executive order prior to its being
adjudged void is an operative fact to which legal consequences are attached. Precisely because of
the judicial recognition that moratorium was a valid governmental response to the plight of the
debtors who were war sufferers, this Court has made clear its view in a series of cases impressive
in their number and unanimity that during the eight-year period that Executive Order No. 32 and
Republic Act No. 342 were in force, prescription did not run.
The error of the lower court in sustaining plaintiff’s suit is thus manifest. From July 19, 1944,
when her loan matured, to July 13, 1959, when extra-judicial foreclosure proceedings were
started by appellant Bank, the time consumed is six days short of fifteen years. The prescriptive
period was tolled however, from March 10, 1945, the effectivity of Executive Order No. 32, to
May 18, 1953, when the decision of Rutter v. Esteban was promulgated, covering eight years,
two months and eight days. Obviously then, when resort was had extra-judicially to the
foreclosure of the mortgage obligation, there was time to spare before prescription could be
availed of as a defense.

8) Oposa v Factoran 224 SCRA 792

Facts: A taxpayer’s class suit was filed by minors Juan Antonio Oposa, et al., representing their
generation and generations yet unborn, and represented by their parents against Fulgencio
Factoran Jr., Secretary of DENR. They prayed that judgment be rendered ordering the defendant,
his agents, representatives and other persons acting in his behalf to:
1. Cancel all existing Timber Licensing Agreements (TLA) in the country;
2. Cease and desist from receiving, accepting, processing, renewing, or appraising
new TLAs; and granting the plaintiffs “such other reliefs just and equitable under the premises.”
They alleged that they have a clear and constitutional right to a balanced and healthful ecology
and are entitled to protection by the State in its capacity as parens patriae. Furthermore, they
claim that the act of the defendant in allowing TLA holders to cut and deforest the remaining
forests constitutes a misappropriation and/or impairment of the natural resources property he
holds in trust for the benefit of the plaintiff minors and succeeding generations.
The defendant filed a motion to dismiss the complaint on the following grounds:
1. Plaintiffs have no cause of action against him;
2. The issues raised by the plaintiffs is a political question which properly pertains to
the legislative or executive branches of the government.

Issues: Does the petitioner-minors have a cause of action in filing a class suit to “prevent the
misappropriation or impairment of Philippine rainforests?”

Held: Yes. Petitioner-minors assert that they represent their generation as well as generations to
come. The Supreme Court ruled that they can, for themselves, for others of their generation, and
for the succeeding generation, file a class suit. Their personality to sue in behalf of succeeding
generations is based on the concept of intergenerational responsibility insofar as the right to a
balanced and healthful ecology is concerned. Such a right considers the “rhythm and harmony of
nature” which indispensably include, inter alia, the judicious disposition, utilization,
management, renewal and conservation of the country’s forest, mineral, land, waters, fisheries,
wildlife, offshore areas and other natural resources to the end that their exploration,
development, and utilization be equitably accessible to the present as well as the future
Needless to say, every generation has a responsibility to the next to preserve that rhythm and
harmony for the full enjoyment of a balanced and healthful ecology. Put a little differently, the
minor’s assertion of their right to a sound environment constitutes at the same time, the
performance of their obligation to ensure the protection of that right for the generations to come.

9) Marbury v Madison 5 US 137

Facts: Before the inauguration of President Jefferson, outgoing President Adams attempted to
secure Federalist control of the judiciary by creating new judgeships and filling them with
Federalist appointees. Included in these efforts was the nomination by President Adams, under
the Organic Act of the District of Columbia (the District), of 42 new justices of the peace for the
District, which were confirmed by the Senate the day before President Jefferson’s inauguration.
A few of the commissions, including Marbury’s, were undelivered when President Jefferson took
office. The new president instructed Secretary of State James Madison to withhold delivery of
the commissions. Marbury sought mandamus in the Supreme Court, requiring James Madison to
deliver his commission.

Issue: Whether or not, Marbury is entitled to mandamus from the Supreme Court?

Held: No. Case dismissed for want of jurisdiction. As the President signed Marbury’s
commission after his confirmation, the appointment has been made, and Marbury has a right to
the commission, given that the law imposed a duty on the office of the president to deliver
Marbury’s commission, that the Supreme Court has the power to review executive actions when
the executive acts as an officer of the law and the nature of the writ of mandamus to direct an
officer of the government “to do a particular thing therein specified,” mandamus is the
appropriate remedy, if available to the Supreme Court.
To issue mandamus to the Secretary of State really is to sustain an original action, which is (in
this case) outside the constitutional limits of jurisdiction imposed on the Supreme Court.

1) Agustin v Edu (1979) 88 SCRA 195

Facts: Leovillo Agustin, the owner of a Beetle, challenged the constitutionality of Letter of
Instruction 229 and its implementing order No. 1 issued by LTO Commissioner Romeo Edu. His
car already had warning lights and did not want to use this.
The letter was promulgation for the requirement of an early warning device installed on a vehicle
to reduce accidents between moving vehicles and parked cars.
The LTO was the issuer of the device at the rate of not more than 15% of the acquisition cost.
The triangular reflector plates were set when the car parked on any street or highway for 30
minutes. It was mandatory.
Petitioner: 1. LOI violated the provisions and delegation of police power, equal protection, and
due process/
2. It was oppressive because the make manufacturers and car dealers millionaires at the expense f
car owners at 56-72 pesos per set.
Hence the petition.
The OSG denied the allegations in par X and XI of the petition with regard to the
unconstitutionality and undue delegation of police power to such acts.
The Philippines was also a member of the 1968 Vienna convention of UN on road signs as a
regulation. To the petitioner, this was still an unlawful delegation of police power.

Issue: Is the LOI constitutional? If it is, is it a valid delegation of police power?

Held: Yes on both. Petition dismissed. Police power, according to the case of Edu v Ericta, which
cited J. Taney, is nothing more or less than the power of government inherent in every

2) Buck v Bell 274 US 200

Facts: Carrie Buck, a resident of the State of Virginia, was a “feeble-minded” eighteen year old
woman, whose mother was similarly feeble-minded. Ms. Buck, who was not married, was also
the mother of a child likewise described by the State of Virginia as feeble-minded. In 1924,
Virginia passed a statute authorizing the superintendents of institutions for certain classes of
persons afflicted with hereditary conditions causing insanity of imbecility to order the
sterilization of such persons. In order for the sterilization procedure to proceed, superintendents
were required to present a petition to the board of directors for their institutions, notify the
inmate and their guardian, and convene a hearing to present evidence for and against conducting
the procedure. In this case, Dr. John Hendren Bell conducted the proceedings against Ms. Buck
after her first physician passed away during the pendency of her case. Dr. Bell similarly pushed
for sterilization under the statute, based on the same justification.

Issue: May a State, consistent with due process and equal protection, order the sterilization of a
woman deemed mentally deficient by a state agency and review board?
Held: Yes, states can require the sterilization of certain citizens without breaching constitutional
rights. The statute in question provided adequate safeguards, and appropriate opportunity for
notification and review, to comport with due process requirements.
Justice Holmes delivered a short majority opinion on behalf of the Court. He pointed out
that the challenge to the law before the Court was properly considered a challenge to the law
itself, not to compliance with the safeguards contained therein. He then argued that as the State
can require sacrifices from citizens, up to and including their very lives, it is not unusual to
require something less than the sacrifice of their life on behalf of the public good. Making a
policy case, Justice Holmes opined that society would be better served by preventing
reproduction by members of society most likely to produce progeny dependent on the
government. The Court also made clear that the process for review of a sterilization order
properly considered the rights of those whom the State targeted for such procedures. Finally,
Justice Holmes dismissed concerns regarding equal protection. Here he reasoned that while not
all citizens were equally subject to the potential to have their reproductive capacity forfeited, the
State could reasonably direct its attention to those deemed unfit to reproduce and thereby
conserve necessary resources for other prerogatives. Comparing forced sterilization to
mandatory vaccination, Justice Holmes argued that both were for the overall benefit of society.
Noting the sad history of Ms. Buck, her mother, and her child, Justice Holmes suggested that
“[t]hree generations of imbeciles are enough.”
While subsequently overturned as public opinion on eugenics changed, the Court here
concluded that sterilization was not only a legitimate policy aim for the states, but entirely
consistent with the Constitution.

3) Calalang v Williams 70 Phil 726

Facts: In pursuance of Commonwealth Act 548 which mandates the Director of Public Works,
with the approval of the Secretary of Public Works and Communications, shall promulgate the
necessary rules and regulations to regulate and control the use of and traffic on such roads and
streets to promote safe transit upon, and avoid obstructions on, roads and streets designated as
national roads, the Director of Public Works adopted the resolution of the National Traffic
Commission, prohibiting the passing of animal drawn vehicles in certainstreets in Manila.
Petitioner questioned this as it constitutes an undue delegation of legislative power.

Issues: Whether or not there is a undue delegation of legislative power?

Held: There is no undue delegation of legislative power. Commonwealth Act 548 does not
confer legislative powers to the Director of Public Works. The authority conferred upon them
and under which they promulgated the rules and regulations now complained of is not to
determine what public policy demands but merely to carry out the legislative policy laid down by
the National Assembly in said Act, to wit, “to promote safe transit upon and avoid obstructions
on, roads and streets designated as national roads by acts of the National Assembly or by
executive orders of the President of the Philippines” and to close them temporarily to any or all
classes of traffic “whenever the condition of the road or the traffic makes such action necessary
or advisable in the public convenience and interest.”
The delegated power, if at all, therefore, is not the determination of what the law shall be, but
merely the ascertainment of the facts and circumstances upon which the application of said law
is to be predicated.

To promulgate rules and regulations on the use of national roads and to determine when and how
long a national road should be closed to traffic, in view of the condition of the road or the traffic
thereon and the requirements of public convenience and interest, is an administrative function
which cannot be directly discharged by the National Assembly.
It must depend on the discretion of some other government official to whom is confided the duty
of determining whether the proper occasion exists for executing the law. But it cannot be said
that the exercise of such discretion is the making of the law.

4) Churchill & Tait v Rafferty 32 Phil. 580

Facts: Appellees, Francis A. Churchill and Stewart Tait are involved in the advertising business,
particularly in billboard advertising. Their billboards located upon private lands in the Province
of Rizal were removed upon complaints and by the orders of the defendant Collector of Internal
Revenue by virtue of the provisions of subsection (b) of section 100 of Act No. 2339.
Appellees, in their supplementary complaint challenge the power of the of the Collector of
Internal Revenue to remove any sign, signboard, or billboard upon the ground that the same is
offensive to the sight or is otherwise a nuisance and maintain that the billboards in question “in
no sense constitute a nuisance and are not deleterious to the health, morals, or general welfare of
the community, or of any persons.” Defendant Collector of Internal Revenue avers that after due
investigation made upon the complaints of the British and German Consuls, the defendant
“decided that the billboard complained of was and still offensive to the sight and is otherwise a

Issue: Was the enactment assailed by the plaintiffs was a legitimate exercise of the police power
of the Government?

Held: The High Court is of the opinion that unsightly advertisements or signs, signboards, or
billboards which are offensive to the sight, are not disassociated from the general welfare of the
public. This is not establishing a new principle, but carrying a well- recognized principle to
further application. Moreover, if the police power may be exercised to encourage a healthy social
and economic condition in the country, and if the comfort and convenience of the people are
included within those subjects, everything which encroaches upon such territory is amenable to
the police power. Judgment reversed.

5) City Government of QC v Erita 122 SCRA 759

Facts: Section 9 of Ordinance No. 6118, S-64 provides that at least 6% of the total area of the
memorial park cemetery shall be set aside for the charity burial of deceased persons who are
paupers and have been residents of Quezon City for at least 5 years prior to their death. As such,
the Quezon City engineer required the respondent, Himlayang Pilipino Inc, to stop any further
selling and/or transaction of memorial park lots in Quezon City where the owners thereof have
failed to donate the required 6% space intended for paupers burial.
The then Court of First Instance and its judge, Hon. Ericta, declared Section 9 of Ordinance No.
6118, S-64 null and void.
Petitioners argued that the taking of the respondent’s property is a valid and reasonable exercise
of police power and that the land is taken for a public use as it is intended for the burial ground
of paupers. They further argued that the Quezon City Council is authorized under its charter, in
the exercise of local police power, ” to make such further ordinances and resolutions not
repugnant to law as may be necessary to carry into effect and discharge the powers and duties
conferred by this Act and such as it shall deem necessary and proper to provide for the health and
safety, promote the prosperity, improve the morals, peace, good order, comfort and convenience
of the city and the inhabitants thereof, and for the protection of property therein.”
On the otherhand, respondent Himlayang Pilipino, Inc. contended that the taking or confiscation
of property was obvious because the questioned ordinance permanently restricts the use of the
property such that it cannot be used for any reasonable purpose and deprives the owner of all
beneficial use of his property.
Issue: Is Section 9 of the ordinance in question a valid exercise of the police power?
Held: No. The Sec. 9 of the ordinance is not a valid exercise of the police power. Occupying the
forefront in the bill of rights is the provision which states that ‘no person shall be deprived of
life, liberty or property without due process of law’ (Art. Ill, Section 1 subparagraph 1,
Constitution). On the other hand, there are three inherent powers of government by which the
state interferes with the property rights, namely-. (1) police power, (2) eminent domain, (3)
taxation. These are said to exist independently of the Constitution as necessary attributes of
An examination of the Charter of Quezon City (Rep. Act No. 537), does not reveal any provision
that would justify the ordinance in question except the provision granting police power to the
City. Section 9 cannot be justified under the power granted to Quezon City to tax, fix the license
fee, and regulate such other business, trades, and occupation as may be established or practised
in the City. The power to regulate does not include the power to prohibit or confiscate. The
ordinance in question not only confiscates but also prohibits the operation of a memorial park
Police power is defined by Freund as ‘the power of promoting the public welfare by restraining
and regulating the use of liberty and property’. It is usually exerted in order to merely regulate
the use and enjoyment of property of the owner. If he is deprived of his property outright, it is
not taken for public use but rather to destroy in order to promote the general welfare. In police
power, the owner does not recover from the government for injury sustained in consequence
Under the provisions of municipal charters which are known as the general welfare clauses, a
city, by virtue of its police power, may adopt ordinances to the peace, safety, health, morals and
the best and highest interests of the municipality. It is a well-settled principle, growing out of the
nature of well-ordered and society, that every holder of property, however absolute and may be
his title, holds it under the implied liability that his use of it shall not be injurious to the equal
enjoyment of others having an equal right to the enjoyment of their property, nor injurious to the
rights of the community. A property in the state is held subject to its general regulations, which
are necessary to the common good and general welfare. Rights of property, like all other social
and conventional rights, are subject to such reasonable limitations in their enjoyment as shall
prevent them from being injurious, and to such reasonable restraints and regulations, established
by law, as the legislature, under the governing and controlling power vested in them by the
constitution, may think necessary and expedient. The state, under the police power, is possessed
with plenary power to deal with all matters relating to the general health, morals, and safety of
the people, so long as it does not contravene any positive inhibition of the organic law and
providing that such power is not exercised in such a manner as to justify the interference of the
courts to prevent positive wrong and oppression.
However, in the case at hand, there is no reasonable relation between the setting aside of at least
six (6) percent of the total area of an private cemeteries for charity burial grounds of deceased
paupers and the promotion of health, morals, good order, safety, or the general welfare of the
people. The ordinance is actually a taking without compensation of a certain area from a private
cemetery to benefit paupers who are charges of the municipal corporation. Instead of building or
maintaining a public cemetery for this purpose, the city passes the burden to private cemeteries.
The expropriation without compensation of a portion of private cemeteries is not covered by
Section 12(t) of Republic Act 537, the Revised Charter of Quezon City which empowers the city
council to prohibit the burial of the dead within the center of population of the city and to
provide for their burial in a proper place subject to the provisions of general law regulating burial
grounds and cemeteries. When the Local Government Code, Batas Pambansa Blg. 337 provides
in Section 177 (q) that a Sangguniang panlungsod may “provide for the burial of the dead in such
place and in such manner as prescribed by law or ordinance” it simply authorizes the city to
provide its own city owned land or to buy or expropriate private properties to construct public
cemeteries. This has been the law and practise in the past. It continues to the present.
Expropriation, however, requires payment of just compensation. The questioned ordinance is
different from laws and regulations requiring owners of subdivisions to set aside certain areas for
streets, parks, playgrounds, and other public facilities from the land they sell to buyers of
subdivision lots. The necessities of public safety, health, and convenience are very clear from
said requirements which are intended to insure the development of communities with salubrious
and wholesome environments. The beneficiaries of the regulation, in turn, are made to pay by the
subdivision developer when individual lots are sold to home-owners.
The petition for review is hereby DISMISSED. The decision of the respondent court is affirmed.

6) Jacobson v Massachusetts 197 US 11

Facts: Cities in Massachusetts could require that all residents be vaccinated, as authorized by a
state statute. This type of regulation was adopted by the city of Cambridge.

Issues: In order to protect public health and safety, does the scope of the state"s police power
include the authority to enact reasonable regulations to do so?

Held: (Harlan, J.) Yes. In order to protect public health and safety, the scope of the state"s police
power includes the authority to enact reasonable regulations to do so. The Constitution secures
liberty for every person within its jurisdiction, but does not give an absolute right for each person
to be free from restraint at all times and in all circumstances. Every person is required to be
subject to various restraints for the common good. The efforts by Cambridge to stamp out
smallpox are substantially related to the protection of public health and safety. There has been
nothing to clearly justify the Court holding the statute to be unconstitutional. This case was
never repudiated. The Court suggested there is no liberty interest in conduct that may put others
at risk. The courts were extremely deferential to a state"s power to protect the public health in
the early part of the twentieth century.

7) Lozano v Martinez 146 SCRA 323

Facts: Petitioners were charged with violation of Batas Pambansa Bilang 22 (Bouncing Check
Law). They moved seasonably to quash the informations on the ground that the acts charged did
not constitute an offense, the statute being unconstitutional. The motions were denied by the
respondent trial courts, except in one case, wherein the trial court declared the law
unconstitutional and dismissed the case. The parties adversely affected thus appealed.

Issue: 1. Whether or not BP 22 is violative of the constitutional provision on non-imprisonment

due to debt
2. Whether or not, it impairs freedom of contract
3. Whether or not, it contravenes the equal protection clause

Held: 1. The enactment of BP 22 is a valid exercise of the police power and is not repugnant to
the constitutional inhibition against imprisonment for debt. The gravamen of the offense
punished by BP 22 is the act of making and issuing a worthless check or a check that is
dishonored upon its presentation for payment. It is not the non-payment of an obligation which
the law punishes. The law is not intended or designed to coerce a debtor to pay his debt. The
thrust of the law is to prohibit, under pain of penal sanctions, the making of worthless checks and
putting them in circulation. Because of its deleterious effects on the public interest, the practice is
proscribed by the law. The law punishes the act not as an offense against property, but an offense
against public order.

Unlike a promissory note, a check is not a mere undertaking to pay an amount of money. It is an
order addressed to a bank and partakes of a representation that the drawer has funds on deposit
against which the check is drawn, sufficient to ensure payment upon its presentation to the bank.
There is therefore an element of certainty or assurance that the instrument will be paid upon
presentation. For this reason, checks have become widely accepted as a medium of payment in
trade and commerce. Although not legal tender, checks have come to be perceived as convenient
substitutes for currency in commercial and financial transactions. The basis or foundation of such
perception is confidence. If such confidence is shaken, the usefulness of checks as currency
substitutes would be greatly diminished or may become nil. Any practice therefore tending to
destroy that confidence should be deterred for the proliferation of worthless checks can only
create havoc in trade circles and the banking community.

The effects of the issuance of a worthless check transcends the private interests of the parties
directly involved in the transaction and touches the interests of the community at large. The
mischief it creates is not only a wrong to the payee or holder, but also an injury to the public. The
harmful practice of putting valueless commercial papers in circulation, multiplied a thousand
fold, can very wen pollute the channels of trade and commerce, injure the banking system and
eventually hurt the welfare of society and the public interest.
2. The freedom of contract which is constitutionally protected is freedom to enter into “lawful”
contracts. Contracts which contravene public policy are not lawful. Besides, we must bear in
mind that checks can not be categorized as mere contracts. It is a commercial instrument which,
in this modem day and age, has become a convenient substitute for money; it forms part of the
banking system and therefore not entirely free from the regulatory power of the state.

3. There is no substance in the claim that the statute in question denies equal protection of the
laws or is discriminatory, since it penalizes the drawer of the check, but not the payee. It is
contended that the payee is just as responsible for the crime as the drawer of the check, since
without the indispensable participation of the payee by his acceptance of the check there would
be no crime. This argument is tantamount to saying that, to give equal protection, the law should
punish both the swindler and the swindled. The petitioners’ posture ignores the well-accepted
meaning of the clause “equal protection of the laws.” The clause does not preclude classification
of individuals, who may be accorded different treatment under the law as long as the
classification is not unreasonable or arbitrary.

8) Telecommunications and Broadcast Attorneys v COMELEC 289 SCRA 387

Facts: Petitioner Telecommunications and Broadcast Attorneys of the Philippines, Inc.

(TELEBAP) is an organization of lawyers of radio and television broadcasting companies. It was
declared to be without legal standing to sue in this case as, among other reasons, it was not able
to show that it was to suffer from actual or threatened injury as a result of the subject law.
Petitioner GMA Network, on the other hand, had the requisite standing to bring the constitutional
challenge. Petitioner operates radio and television broadcast stations in the Philippines affected
by the enforcement of Section 92, B.P. No. 881.
Petitioners challenge the validity of Section 92, B.P. No. 881 which provides:
“Comelec Time- The Commission shall procure radio and television time to be known as the
“Comelec Time” which shall be allocated equally and impartially among the candidates within
the area of coverage of all radio and television stations. For this purpose, the franchise of all
radio broadcasting and television stations are hereby amended so as to provide radio or television
time, free of charge, during the period of campaign.”
Petitioner contends that while Section 90 of the same law requires COMELEC to procure print
space in newspapers and magazines with payment, Section 92 provides that air time shall be
procured by COMELEC free of charge. Thus it contends that Section 92 singles out radio and
television stations to provide free air time.
Petitioner claims that it suffered losses running to several million pesos in providing COMELEC
Time in connection with the 1992 presidential election and 1995 senatorial election and that it
stands to suffer even more should it be required to do so again this year. Petitioners claim that the
primary source of revenue of the radio and television stations is the sale of air time to advertisers
and to require these stations to provide free air time is to authorize unjust taking of private
property. According to petitioners, in 1992 it lost P22,498,560.00 in providing free air time for
one hour each day and, in this year’s elections, it stands to lost P58,980,850.00 in view of
COMELEC’s requirement that it provide at least 30 minutes of prime time daily for such.
Issues: 1) Whether of not Section 92 of B.P. No. 881 denies radio and television broadcast
companies the equal protection of the laws.
2) Whether or not Section 92 of B.P. No. 881 constitutes taking of property without due
process of law and without just compensation.

Held: Petitioner’s argument is without merit. All broadcasting, whether radio or by television
stations, is licensed by the government. Airwave frequencies have to be allocated as there are
more individuals who want to broadcast that there are frequencies to assign. Radio and television
broadcasting companies, which are given franchises, do not own the airwaves and frequencies
through which they transmit broadcast signals and images. They are merely given the temporary
privilege to use them. Thus, such exercise of the privilege may reasonably be burdened with the
performance by the grantee of some form of public service. In granting the privilege to operate
broadcast stations and supervising radio and television stations, the state spends considerable
public funds in licensing and supervising them.
The argument that the subject law singles out radio and television stations to provide free air
time as against newspapers and magazines which require payment of just compensation for the
print space they may provide is likewise without merit. Regulation of the broadcast industry
requires spending of public funds which it does not do in the case of print media. To require the
broadcast industry to provide free air time for COMELEC is a fair exchange for what the
industry gets.
As radio and television broadcast stations do not own the airwaves, no private property is taken
by the requirement that they provide air time to the COMELEC.

9) Tio v VRB 151 SCRA 208

Facts: The petitioner assails the validity of PD 1987 entitled an "Act creating the Videogram
Regulatory Board," citing especially Section 10 thereof, which imposes a tax of 30% on the
gross receipts payable to the local government. Petitioner contends that aside from its being a
rider and not germane to the subject matter thereof, and such imposition was being harsh,
confiscatory, oppressive and/or unlawfully restraints trade in violation of the due process clause
of the Constitution.

Issues: Is PD 1987 a valid exercise of taxing power of the state?

Held: Yes. It is beyond serious question that a tax does not cease to be valid merely because it
regulates, discourages, or even definitely deters the activities taxed. The power to impose taxes is
one so unlimited in force and so searching in extent, that the courts scarcely venture to declare
that it is subject to any restrictions whatever, except such as those rest in the discretion of the
authority which exercises it. In imposing a tax, the legislature acts upon its constituents. This is,
in general, a sufficient security against erroneous and oppressive taxation.
The levy of the 30% tax is for a public purpose. It was imposed primarily to answer the need
for regulating the video industry, particularly because of the rampant film piracy, the flagrant
violation of intellectual property rights, and the proliferation of pornographic video tapes. And
while it was also an objective of the DECREE to protect the movie industry, the tax remains a
valid imposition.
The public purpose of a tax may legally exist even if the motive which impelled the legislature
to impose the tax was to favor one industry over another.
10) US v Salaveria 39 Phil 102

Facts: Petitioners had been previously issued licenses for their night clubs by the Municipal
Mayor of Bocaue Bulacan. Then Ordinance no. 84, Series of 1975 [Prohibition and Closure
Ordinance] took effect in Bocaue, Bulacan which provided that no operator of night clubs,
cabarets or dance halls shall henceforth be issued permits/licenses to operate within the
jurisdiction of the municipality and no license/permit shall be issued to any professional hostess,
hospitality girls and professional dancer for employment in any of the aforementioned
establishments. The prohibition also included prohibition in the renewal thereof. (Sec. 3) It
further provided for the revocation of permits and licenses upon the expiration of the 30-day
period and that the operation of such establishments within the jurisdiction of the municipality
shall then on be illegal (Sec. 4).
Petitioners thus filed in the Bulacan CFI for prohibition with preliminary injunction on the
grounds that:
1. Ordinance No. 84 is null and void as a municipality has no authority to prohibit a lawful
business, occupation or calling.
2. Ordinance No. 84 is violative of the petitioners’ right to due process and the equal protection
of the law, as the license previously given to petitioners was in effect withdrawn without judicial
3. That under P.D. No. 189, as amended, by P.D. No. 259, the power to license and regulate
tourist-oriented businesses including night clubs, has been transferred to the Department of
Lower court upheld constitutionality and validity of Ordinance 84 and dismissed case.

Issue: Whether or not, a municipal corporation (Bocaue, Bulacan as represented by Municipal

Mayor Matias Ramirez and Municipal Vice-Mayor Mario Mendoza) can prohibit the exercise of
a lawful trade, operation of night clubs, and the pursuit of a lawful occupation, such clubs
employing hostesses.

Held: NO. The reliance on the police power of the lower court is insufficient to justify the
enactment of the assailed ordinance. It must be declared null and void. Police power is granted
to municipal corporations by Sec. 2238, Revised Admin Code (practically a reproduction of the
former Sec. 39 of Municipal Code)

It cannot be said that such a sweeping exercise of a lawmaking power by Bocaue could qualify
under the term reasonable as objective of fostering public morals can be attained by a measure
that does not encompass too wide a field such as reasonable restrictions as opposed to absolute

Furthermore, this case refers to R.A. 938 which was originally entitled: “an act granting
municipal or city boards and councils the power to regulate the establishment, maintenance and
operation of certain places of amusement within their respective territorial jurisdictions.”

This act gives the municipal or city board or council of each chartered city the power to regulate
by ordinance the establishment, maintenance and operation of night clubs, cabarets, and other
similar places of amusement within its territorial jurisdiction.
11) US v Toribio 45 Phil 85

Facts: Sometime in the 1900s, in the town of Carmen, province of Bohol, Toribio applied for a
license to have his carabao be slaughtered. His request was denied because his carabao is found
to be fit for agricultural work. Even so, he still slaughtered his carabao for the purpose of human
consumption. The trial court of Bohol found that the respondent slaughtered or caused to be
slaughtered a carabao without a permit from the municipal treasurer of the municipality, in
violation of Sections 30 and 33 of Act No. 1147, an Act regulating the registration, branding, and
slaughter of Large Cattle. The act prohibits the slaughter of large cattle fit for agricultural work
or other draft purposes for human consumption.
The counsel for appellant contended that the provisions of Act No. 1147 do not prohibit nor
penalize the slaughter of large cattle without a permit of the municipal treasure if the
slaughtering of large cattle happened outside the municipal slaughterhouse. They said that the
prohibition and penalty is limited only to the large cattle slaughtered at the municipal
slaughterhouse for the prohibition contained in section 30 and the penalty imposed in section 33
stated only the phrase “at the municipal slaughterhouse”.
They also contended that the act constitutes a taking of property for public use in the exercise of
the right of eminent domain without providing for the compensation of owners, and it is an
undue and unauthorized exercise of police power of the state for it deprives them of the
enjoyment of their private property.
Issue: Whether or not the prohibition and the penalty imposed in Act No. 1147 is limited only to
the slaughter of large cattle at the municipal slaughterhouse.
Whether or not Act. No. 1147, regulating the registration, branding and slaughter of large cattle,
is an undue and unauthorized exercise of police power.
Held: Where the language of a statute is fairly susceptible of two or more constructions, that
construction should be adopted which will most tend to give effect to the manifest intent of the
lawmaker and promote the object for which the statute was enacted, and a construction should be
rejected which would tend to render abortive other provisions of the statute and to defeat the
object which the legislator sought to attain by its enactment. The court is of opinion, therefore,
that sections 30 and 33 of the Act prohibit and penalize the slaughtering or causing to be
slaughtered for human consumption of large cattle at any place without the permit provided for
in section 30.
Act no. 1147 is not a taking of the property for public use, within the meaning of the constitution,
but is a just and legitimate exercise of the power of the legislature to regulate and restrain such
particular use of the property as would be inconsistent with the rights of the publics. All property
is acquired and held under the tacit condition that it shall not be so used as to injure the equal
rights of others or greatly impair the public rights and interests of the community.

12) Ynot v IAC 148 SCRA 208

Facts: On January 13, 1984, the petitioner transported six carabaos in a pump boat from Masbate
to Iloilo when the same was confiscated by the police station commander of Barotac Nuevo,
Iloilo for the violation of E.O. 626-A. A case was filed by the petitioner questioning the
constitutionality of executive order and the recovery of the carabaos. After considering the merits
of the case, the confiscation was sustained and the court declined to rule on the constitutionality
issue. The petitioner appealed the decision to the Intermediate Appellate Court but it also upheld
the ruling of RTC.
Issue: Whether or not, E.O. 626-A unconstitutional?
Held: The Respondent contends that it is a valid exercise of police power to justify EO 626-A
amending EO 626 in asic rule prohibiting the slaughter of carabaos except under certain
conditions. The supreme court said that The reasonable connection between the means employed
and the purpose sought to be achieved by the questioned measure is missing the Supreme Court
do not see how the prohibition of the inter-provincial transport of carabaos can prevent their
indiscriminate slaughter, considering that they can be killed anywhere, with no less difficulty in
one province than in another. Obviously, retaining the carabaos in one province will not prevent
their slaughter there, any more than moving them to another province will make it easier to kill
them there.
The Supreme Court found E.O. 626-A unconstitutional. The executive act defined the
prohibition, convicted the petitioner and immediately imposed punishment, which was carried
out forthright. Due process was not properly observed. In the instant case, the carabaos were
arbitrarily confiscated by the police station commander, were returned to the petitioner only after
he had filed a complaint for recovery and given a supersedeas bond of P12,000.00. The measure
struck at once and pounced upon the petitioner without giving him a chance to be heard, thus
denying due process.


1) Assoc. of Small Landowners v Sec. of Agrarian Reform 175 SCRA 343

Facts: Petitioners claim they cannot eject their tenants and so are unable to enjoy their right of
retention because the Department of Agrarian Reform has so far not issued the implementing
rules required under the above-quoted decree.

Issue: Whether or not, agrarian reform is an exercise of police power or eminent domain

Held: There are traditional distinctions between the police power and the power of eminent
domain that logically preclude the application of both powers at the same time on the same
subject. Property condemned under the police power is noxious or intended for a noxious
purpose, such as a building on the verge of collapse, which should be demolished for the public
safety, or obscene materials, which should be destroyed in the interest of public morals. The
confiscation of such property is not compensable, unlike the taking of property under the power
of expropriation, which requires the payment of just compensation to the owner.
The cases before us present no knotty complication insofar as the question of compensable
taking is concerned. To the extent that the measures under challenge merely prescribe retention
limits for landowners, there is an exercise of the police power for the regulation of private
property in accordance with the Constitution. But where, to carry out such regulation, it becomes
necessary to deprive such owners of whatever lands they may own in excess of the maximum
area allowed, there is definitely a taking under the power of eminent domain for which payment
of just compensation is imperative. The taking contemplated is not a mere limitation of the use of
the land. What is required is the surrender of the title to and the physical possession of the said
excess and all beneficial rights accruing to the owner in favor of the farmer-beneficiary. This is
definitely an exercise not of the police power but of the power of eminent domain.

2) City of Manila v Chinese Community of Manila 40 Phil 349

Facts: Plaintiff sought to expropriate a part of a private cemetery devoted for public use to make
an extension of Rizal Avenue. Defendants contend that expropriation is not necessary because it
will disturb the remains of the dead. Moreover, adjoining and adjacent lots were offered to the
city free of charge for the planned public improvement.

Issues: Whether or not a private property devoted for public use can still be expropriated.

Held: Yes, private property devoted for public use is still subject to expropriation, provided this
is done directly by the national legislature or under a specific grant of authority to the delegate.
In addition, there must be a necessity for the expropriation. In the case at bar, evidence shows
that there is no proof of the need of converting the cemetery.

3) Export Processing Zone Authority v Dulay 148 SCRA 305

Facts: The four parcels of land which are the subject of this case is where the Mactan Export
Processing Zone Authority in Cebu (EPZA) is to be constructed. Private respondent San Antonio
Development Corporation (San Antonio, for brevity), in which these lands are registered under,
claimed that the lands were expropriated to the government without them reaching the agreement
as to the compensation. Respondent Judge Dulay then issued an order for the appointment of the
commissioners to determine the just compensation. It was later found out that the payment of the
government to San Antonio would be P15 per square meter, which was objected to by the latter
contending that under PD 1533, the basis of just compensation shall be fair and according to the
fair market value declared by the owner of the property sought to be expropriated, or by the
assessor, whichever is lower. Such objection and the subsequent Motion for Reconsideration
were denied and hearing was set for the reception of the commissioner’s report. EPZA then filed
this petition for certiorari and mandamus enjoining the respondent from further hearing the case.

Issue: Whether or Not the exclusive and mandatory mode of determining just compensation in
PD 1533 is unconstitutional.

Held: The Supreme Court ruled that the mode of determination of just compensation in PD 1533
is unconstitutional. The method of ascertaining just compensation constitutes impermissible
encroachment to judicial prerogatives. It tends to render the courts inutile in a matter in which
under the Constitution is reserved to it for financial determination. The valuation in the decree
may only serve as guiding principle or one of the factors in determining just compensation, but it
may not substitute the court’s own judgment as to what amount should be awarded and how to
arrive at such amount. The determination of just compensation is a judicial function. The
executive department or the legislature may make the initial determination but when a party
claims a violation of the guarantee in the Bill of Rights that the private party may not be taken
for public use without just compensation, no statute, decree, or executive order can mandate that
its own determination shall prevail over the court’s findings. Much less can the courts be
precluded from looking into the justness of the decreed compensation.

4) Manila Railroad Co. v Velasquez 32 Phil 286

FACTS: This is a case of appeal from CFI Tarlac’s judgment dismissing the action before it on
motion of the plaintiff upon the ground that the court had no jurisdiction of the subject matter.
On December 1907, Manila Railroad Co. began an action in CFI Tarlac for the condemnation of
69,910 sq. m. real estate located in Tarlac. This is for construction of a railroad line “from
Paniqui to Tayug in Tarlac,” as authorized by law.
Before beginning the action, Manila Railroad had caused to be made a thorough search in the
Office of the Registry of Property and of the Tax where the lands sought to be condemned were
located and to whom they belonged. As a result of such investigations, it alleged that the lands in
question were located in Tarlac.
After filing and duly serving the complaint, the plaintiff, pursuant to law and pending final
determination of the action, took possession of and occupied the lands described in the
complaint, building its line and putting the same in operation.
On October 4, Manila Railroad gave notice to the defendants that on October 9, a motion would
be made to the court to dismiss the action upon the ground that the court had no jurisdiction of
the subject matter, it having just been ascertained by the plaintiff that the land sought to be
condemned was situated in the Province of Nueva Ecija, instead of the Province of Tarlac, as
alleged in the complaint.
This motion was heard and, after due consideration, the trial court dismissed the action upon the
ground presented by the plaintiff. Thus, the case was appealed.

ISSUES: 1. Whether or not, CFI Tarlac has power and authority to take cognizance of
condemnation of real estate located in another province
2. Whether or not, Sec. 377[1] of the Code of Civil Procedure and Act. No. 1258 are applicable
and so the CFI has no jurisdiction.

HELD: 1. YES, CFI Tarlac has power and authority to take cognizance of condemnation of real
estate located in another province. Sections 55 and 56[1] of Act No. 136 of the Philippine
Commission confer perfect and complete jurisdiction upon the CFI of these Islands with respect
to real estate in the Philippine Islands. Such jurisdiction is not made to depend upon locality.
There is no suggestion of limitation. The jurisdiction is universal. It is nowhere suggested, much
less provided, that a CFI of one province, regularly sitting in said province, may not under
certain conditions take cognizance of an action arising in another province or of an action
relating to real estate located outside of the boundaries of the province to which it may at the
time be assigned.
Furthermore, in terms of jurisdiction over person of the plaintiff, the procedure does not alter or
change that power or authority; it simply directs the manner in which it shall be fully and justly
exercised. To be sure, in certain cases, if that power is not exercised in conformity with the
provisions of the procedural law, purely, the court attempting to exercise it loses the power to
exercise it legally. This does not mean that it loses jurisdiction of the subject matter. It means
simply that he may thereby lose jurisdiction of the person or that the judgment may thereby be
rendered defective for lack of something essential to sustain it. There is, of course, an important
distinction between person and subject matter are both conferred by law. As to the subject matter,
nothing can change the jurisdiction of the court over diminish it or dictate when it shall attach or
when it shall be removed. That is a matter of legislative enactment which none but the legislature
may change. On the other hand, the jurisdiction of the court over the person is, in some
instances, made to defend on the consent or objection, on the acts or omissions of the parties or
any of them. Jurisdiction over the person, however, may be conferred by consent, expressly or
impliedly given, or it may, by an objection, be prevented from attaching or removed after it has
2. NO. Sec. 377 contains no express inhibition against the court. The prohibition provided
therein is clearly directed against the one who begins the action and lays the venue. The court,
before the action is commenced, has nothing to do with it either. The plaintiff does both. Only
when that is done does the section begin to operate effectively so far as the court is concerned.
The prohibition is not a limitation on the power of the court but on the rights of the plaintiff. It
establishes a relation not between the court and the subject, but between the plaintiff and the
defendant. It relates not to jurisdiction but to trial. It simply gives to defendant the unqualified
right, if he desires it, to have the trial take place where his land lies and where, probably, all of
his witnesses live. Its object is to secure to him a convenient trial.
The fact that such a provision appears in the procedural law at once raises a strong presumption
that it has nothing to do with the jurisdiction of the court over the subject matter. It becomes
merely a matter of method, of convenience to the parties litigant. If their interests are best
subserved by bringing in the Court Instance of the city of Manila an action affecting lands in the
Province of Ilocos Norte, there is no controlling reason why such a course should not be
followed. The matter is, under the law, entirely within the control of either party. The plaintiff’s
interests select the venue. If such selection is not in accordance with section 377, the defendant
may make timely objection and, as a result, the venue is changed to meet the requirements of the
Section 377 of the Code of Civil Procedure is not applicable to actions by railroad corporations
to condemn lands; and that, while with the consent of defendants express or implied the venue
may be laid and the action tried in any province selected by the plaintiff nevertheless the
defendants whose lands lie in one province, or any one of such defendants, may, by timely
application to the court, require the venue as to their, or, if one defendant, his, lands to be
changed to the province where their or his lands lie. In such case the action as to all of the
defendants not objecting would continue in the province where originally begun. It would be
severed as to the objecting defendants and ordered continued before the court of the appropriate
province or provinces. While we are of that opinion and so hold it can not affect the decision in
the case before us for the reason that the defendants are not objecting to the venue and are not
asking for a change thereof. They have not only expressly submitted themselves to the
jurisdiction of the court but are here asking that that jurisdiction be maintained against the efforts
of the plaintiff to remove it.
Moreover, the principles which we have herein laid down we do not apply to criminal cases.
They seem to rest on a different footing. There the people of the state is a party. The interests of
the public require that, to secure the best results and effects in the punishment of crime, it is
necessary to prosecute and punish the criminal in the very place, as near as may be, where he
committed his crime. As a result it has been the uniform legislation, both in statutes and in
constitutions, that the venue of a criminal action must be laid in the place where the crime was
committed. While the laws here do not specifically and in terms require it, we believe it is the
established custom and the uniform holding that criminal prosecutions must be brought and
conducted, except in cases especially provided by law, in the province where the crime is
The judgment must be REVERSED and the case REMANDED to the trial court with direction to
proceed with the action according to law.
With regards to the jurisdiction over the person of the plaintiff, the jurisdiction was obtained not
only by the usual course of practice – that is, by the process of the court – but also by consent
expressly given, is apparent. The plaintiff submitted itself to the jurisdiction by beginning the
action. The defendants are now in this court asking that the action be not dismissed but
continued. They are not only nor objecting to the jurisdiction of the court but, rather, are here on
this appeal for the purpose of maintaining that very jurisdiction over them. Nor is the plaintiff in
any position to ask for favors. It is clearly guilty of gross negligence in the allegations of its
complaint, if the land does not lie in Tarlac as it now asserts.

5) Mataas na Lupa Tenants v Dimayuga 130 SCRA 30

Facts: On January 17, 1969, petitioners filed a complaint for the exercise of preferential rights
with the then Court of First Instance of Manila, Branch IV. The said complaint alleged that
petitioner association has for its members Nicolas Aglabay, et al., which members are heads of
110 tenant families, and who have been, for more than ten years prior to 1959, occupants of a
parcel of land (with their 110 houses built thereon), formerly owned by the respondent, Juliana
Diez Vda. de Gabriel, to whom petitioners have been paying rents for the lease thereof, but who,
on May 14, 1968, without notice to petitioners, sold the same to respondent Carlos Dimayuga,
who, in turn, mortgaged the same to her for the balance of the purchase price; that according to
Republic Act 1162, as amended by Republic Act 2342, a parcel of land in Manila and suburbs,
with at least fifty (50) houses of tenants erected thereon and actually leased to said tenants for at
least ten (10) years prior to June 20, 1959, may not be sold by the landowner to any person other
than such tenants, unless the latter renounced their rights in a public instrument; that without said
tenants-appellants having renounced their preferential rights in public instrument, respondent
Vda. de Gabriel sold the land to respondent Dimayuga; that petitioners-tenants are willing to
purchase said land at the same price and on the same terms and conditions observed in the
contract of sale with respondent Dimayuga; and that since aforesaid contract of sale is expressly
prohibited by law, the same is null and void, while it is mandatory for respondent Vda. de
Gabriel to execute such sale to petitioners, Petitioners therefore prayed that said contract of sale
be declared void, and that respondent Vda. de Gabriel be ordered to execute a deed of sale in
favor of petitioners at the same price and conditions followed in the contract with respondent
Dimayuga, plus attorney's fees and damages.

Issue: Whether or not petitioners have the pre-emptive or preferential rights to buy the land in

Held: This preferential right of petitioners and the power of eminent domain have been further
mandated, strengthened and expanded by recent developments in law and jurisprudence. Private
property shall not be taken for public use without just compensation (Sec. 2 Art. IV). The state
shall promote social justice to ensure the dignity, welfare, and security of the people. Toward this
end, the state shall regulate the acquisition, ownership, use, enjoyment and disposition of private
property and equitably diffuse property ownership and profits (Sec. 6 Art. 11).
P.D. No. 1517 was enacted and Proclamation No. 1967 as an Implementing law, undoubtedly
adopts and crystallizes the greater number of people when it speaks of tenants and residents in
declared urban land reform zones or areas without any mention of the land area covered by such
zones. The focus is on people who would stand to benefit and not on the size of the land
involved. The 110 tenant-families have been vested with the right of first refusal to purchase the
land in question within a reasonable time and reasonable prices, subject to Ministry of Human
Settlements rules and regulations. The Oct. 30, 1969 order is set aside and the Ministry of
Human Settlements is hereby directed to facilitate administer the implementation of the rights of

6) Municipality of Daet v CA 93 SCRA 503

Facts: The judgment of the respondent Court of Appeals, subject of the instant petition to review
on certiorari, "fixing the fair market value of the property sought to be expropriated at P200.00
per square meter or of Five Hundred Forty three thousand Four hundred (P543,400.00) pesos,
and the value of the improvement thereon at Thirty six thousand five hundred (P36,500.00)
PESOS, Philippine Currency, both amounts to bear legal interest from and after the date of the
actual taking of possession by the Municipality of Daet, Camarines Norte until the full amount is
paid, with costs against plaintiff-appellant," must be affirmed in the light of the unusual, unique
and abnormal circumstances obtaining in this case where the complaint for condemnation was
filed on August 9, 1962 or seventeen (17) years ago but up to the present, the petitioner
Municipality of Daet has failed to make the deposit required to take possession of the property
sought to be expropriated.

Issue: Whether or not the valuation is just, fair and reasonable.

Held: For purposes of just compensation, in cases of private property acquired by the
government for public use, the basis shall be the current and fair market value as declared by the
owner or administrator or such market value as determined by the assessor, whichever is lower. It
is a cardinal rule of statutory construction that laws shall have only prospective effect. The
provisional value of the property in this case having already been fixed, the deposit on February
9, 1973 of the amount of P54,370.00 representing the assessed value of the land and the deposit
on October 21, 1977 of the amount of P25,830.00 representing the assessed value of the
improvement, both pursuant to the said decree, are not sufficient. Nevertheless, said amounts
should be deducted from the total amount due to private respondent. To explain and clarify the
judgment of the Court in affirming the decision appealed, the demolition of the building of
private respondent standing on the land by the Municipal Mayor, Engr. Jose P. Timoner on
February 14, 1978 constituted the actual taking of possession of the property sought to be
expropriated by the Municipality of Daet. And from said date, February 14, 1978, interest at the
legal rate shall be paid by the municipality until the full amount is paid.
7) NHA v Reyes 123 SCRA 245

Facts: The undisputed fact that in this certiorari proceeding against respondent Judge for failure
to comply with the provision of the Presidential Decrees as to the amount to be paid by petitioner
to entitle it to a writ of possession in an expropriation proceeding, no question was raised as to
their validity, calls for the grant of the remedy sought. The controversy started with the filing of a
complaint with the then Court of Agrarian Relations, Seventh Regional District, Branch II,
Cavite City, against private respondents, for the expropriation, pursuant to Presidential Decree
No. 757, of a parcel of land, with an area of 25,000 square meters, owned and registered in the
name of respondent Quirino Austria, and needed for the expansion of the Dasmariñas
Resettlement Project. Then came from petitioner about a year later, a motion for the issuance of a
writ of possession. Petitioner was able to secure an order placing it in possession. Thereafter,
private respondent Quirino Austria filed a Motion to Withdraw Deposit in the amount of
P6,600.00, a sum which was equivalent to the value of the property assessed for taxation
purposes and which was deposited by petitioner pursuant to Presidential Decree No. 42 . There
was an Opposition to the Motion to Withdraw Deposit by petitioner, citing Section 92 of
Presidential Decree No. 464. Petitioner's submission is that the owner's declaration at P1,400.00
which is lower than the assessor's assessment, is the just compensation for the respondents'
property, respondents thus being precluded from withdrawing any amount more than P1,400.00.
Respondent Judge, however, issued an order dated July 13, 1978 which, according to petitioner,
is clearly contrary to the letter and spirit of the aforecited laws. There was a Motion for
Reconsideration dated July 21, 1978. Its basis is the provision in Presidential Decree No. 1224:
"In the determination of just compensation for such private lands and improvement to be
expropriated, the government shall choose between the value of the real property and
improvements thereon as declared by the owner or administrator thereof or the market value
determined by the City or provincial assessor, whichever is lower, at the time of the filing of the
expropriation complaint." It was then submitted that under the aforequoted statutory provision,
the owner's declared market value at P1,400.00 which is lower than that fixed by the assessor is
the just compensation of respondent Quirino Austria's property sought to be expropriated. The
motion for reconsideration was denied for lack of merit.

Issue: Whether or not, there was just compensation.

Held: The issue in this petition for certiorari and mandamus involves the application of a rule
introduced by P.D. No. 76 and reiterated in subsequent decrees that not only promotes social
justice but also ends the one-sided practice supported by the conniving consent of government
officials and employees, of under declaring properties for the purpose of taxation but ballooning
the price thereof when the same properties are to be acquired by the government for public
purposes. Put to test is the power of the government to introduce rationality in the laws and to
discourage a deceitful practice that is not only damaging to the government officers but also
undermines its effort at awakening a democratic responsiveness of the citizenry toward good
government and its economic and social programs. The courts should recognize that the rule
introduced by P.D. 76 and reiterated in subsequent decrees does not upset the established
concepts of justice or the constitutional provision on just compensation for, precisely, the owner
is allowed to make his own valuation of his property. The writ of certiorari is granted and the
order of respondent judge of July 13, 1978 is hereby nullified and set aside.
8) People v Fajardo 104 Phil 443

Facts: The municipal council of baao, camarines sur stating among others that construction of a
building, which will destroy the view of the plaza, shall not be allowed and therefore be
destroyed at the expense of the owner, enacted an ordinance. Herein appellant filed a written
request with the incumbent municipal mayor for a permit to construct a building adjacent to their
gasoline station on a parcel of land registered in Fajardo's name, located along the national
highway and separated from the public plaza by acreek. The request was denied, for the reason
among others that the proposed building would destroy the view or beauty of the public
plaza.Defendants reiterated their request for a building permit, but again the mayor turned down
the request. Whereupon, appellants proceeded with the construction of the building without a
permit, because they needed a place of residence very badly, their former house having been
destroyed by a typhoon and hitherto they had been living on leased property.
Thereafter,defendants were charged in violation of the ordinance and subsequently convicted.
Hence this appeal.

Issues: Whether or not, the ordinance is a valid exercise of police power.

Held: No. It is not a valid exercise of police power. The ordinance is unreasonable and
oppressive, in that it operates to permanently deprive appellants of the right to use their own
property; hence, it oversteps the bounds of police power, and amounts to a taking of appellant’s
property without just compensation. We do not overlook that the modern tendency is to regard
the beautification of neighborhoods as conducive to the comfort and happiness of residents.

As the case now stands, every structure that may be erected on appellants' land, regardless of its
own beauty, stands condemned under the ordinance in question, because it would interfere with
the view of the public plaza from the highway. The appellants would, in effect, be constrained to
let their land remain idle and unused for the obvious purpose for which it is best suited, being
urban in character. To legally achieve that result, the municipality must give appellants just
compensation and an opportunity to be heard.

9) Phil. Press Institute v COMELEC 244 SCRA 272

Facts: Respondent Comelec promulgated Resolution No. 2772 directing newspapers to provide
free Comelec space of not less than one-half page for the common use of political parties and
candidates. The Comelec space shall be allocated by the Commission, free of charge, among all
candidates to enable them to make known their qualifications, their stand on public Issue and
their platforms of government. The Comelec space shall also be used by the Commission for
dissemination of vital election information.

Petitioner Philippine Press Institute, Inc. (PPI), a non-profit organization of newspaper and
magazine publishers, asks the Supreme Court to declare Comelec Resolution No. 2772
unconstitutional and void on the ground that it violates the prohibition imposed by the
Constitution upon the government against the taking of private property for public use without
just compensation. On behalf of the respondent Comelec, the Solicitor General claimed that the
Resolution is a permissible exercise of the power of supervision (police power) of the Comelec
over the information operations of print media enterprises during the election period to safeguard
and ensure a fair, impartial and credible election.
Issue: Whether or not Comelec Resolution No. 2772 is unconstitutional.
Held: The Supreme Court declared the Resolution as unconstitutional. It held that to compel print
media companies to donate “Comelec space” amounts to “taking” of private personal property
without payment of the just compensation required in expropriation cases. Moreover, the element
of necessity for the taking has not been established by respondent Comelec, considering that the
newspapers were not unwilling to sell advertising space. The taking of private property for public
use is authorized by the constitution, but not without payment of just compensation. Also
Resolution No. 2772 does not constitute a valid exercise of the police power of the state. In the
case at bench, there is no showing of existence of a national emergency to take private property
of newspaper or magazine publishers.

10) Republic of the Philippines v Castellvi 58 SCRA 336

FACTS: After the owner of a parcel of land that has been rented and occupied by the
government in 1947 refused to extend the lease, the latter commenced expropriation proceedings
in 1959. During the assessment of just compensation, the government argued that it had taken the
property when the contract of lease commenced and not when the proceedings begun. The owner
maintains that the disputed land was not taken when the government commenced to occupy the
said land as lessee because the essential elements of the “taking” of property under the power of
eminent domain, namely (1) entrance and occupation by condemnor upon the private property
for more than a momentary period, and (2) devoting it to a public use in such a way as to oust the
owner and deprive him of all beneficial enjoyment of the property, are not present.

ISSUE: Whether or not the taking of property has taken place when the condemnor has entered
and occupied the property as lesse.

HELD: No, the property was deemed taken only when the expropriation proceedings
commenced in 1959. The essential elements of the taking are: (1) Expropriator must enter a
private property, (2) for more than a momentary period, (3) and under warrant of legal authority,
(4) devoting it to public use, or otherwise informally appropriating or injuriously affecting it in
such a way as (5) substantially to oust the owner and deprive him of all beneficial enjoyment
thereof. In the case at bar, these elements were not present when the government entered and
occupied the property under a contract of lease.

11) Richards v Washington Terminal 283 US 546

Facts: This case involves the right, under the Fifth Amendment, of an owner to be compensated
for special and peculiar damages to his property by reason of the operation of a railroad near the

Plaintiff in error, who was plaintiff below, commenced this action in the Supreme Court of the
District of Columbia to recover for the damage to his property resulting from the maintenance of
an alleged nuisance by defendant by means of the operation of a railroad and tunnel upon its own
lands near to, but not adjoining, those of plaintiff. Defendant having pleaded not guilty, the issue
came on for trial by jury, and, at the conclusion of plaintiff's evidence, a verdict was directed in
favor of defendant. The court of appeals affirmed the judgment (37 App.D.C. 289), and a writ of
error brings the controversy under the review of this Court.

Plaintiff's property has been damaged by the volumes of dense black or gray smoke, and also by
dust and dirt, cinders and gases, emitted from the trains while passing over the tracks and in or
out of the tunnel, or standing upon the tracks near the signal tower. There is a fanning system
installed in the tunnel which causes the gases and smoke emitted from engines while in the
tunnel to be forced out of the south portal, and these gases and smoke contaminate the air, and
also add to the inconvenience suffered by plaintiff in the occupation of his property. His house
was pleasant and comfortable for purposes of occupation before the construction of the tunnel
and tracks, but since then it has not only depreciated in value, but the tenant removed therefrom,
and plaintiff was obliged to occupy the house himself by reason of his inability to rent it.

The tunnel and the tracks leading from it across Square 693 were located and constructed and are
now maintained under the authority of Acts of Congress of February 12, 1901, and February 28,
1903, 31 Stat. 774, c. 354; 32 Stat. 909, c. 856, in accordance with plans and specifications
approved by those acts. No claim is made by plaintiff that the tunnel, the tracks in Square 693,
and the trains operated therein and thereon were constructed, operated, or maintained in a
negligent manner, and it is conceded that the tunnel and tracks were built upon property acquired
by purchase or condemnation proceedings, and were constructed under authority of the acts of
Congress and of permits issued by the Commissioners of the District of Columbia.

Issue: Whether or not, an owner to be compensated for special and peculiar damages to his
property by reason of the operation of a railroad near the premises.

Held: Judgment reversed and cause remanded to the court of appeals, with directions to reverse
the judgment of the Supreme Court of the District and remand the cause to that court with
directions for a new trial, and for further proceedings in accordance with the views above
expressed. Although in England, Parliament, being omnipotent, may authorize the taking of
private property for public use without compensation, the English courts decline to place an
unjust construction on its acts, and, unless so clear as not to admit any other meaning, do not
interpret them as interfering with rights of private property.
Legislation of Congress is different from that of Parliament, as it must be construed in the light
of that provision of the Fifth Amendment which forbids the taking of private property for public
use without compensation.
While Congress may legalize, within the sphere of its jurisdiction, what otherwise would be a
public nuisance, it may not confer immunity from action for a private nuisance of such a
character as to amount in effect to a taking of private property for public use.
While the owners of a railroad constructed and operated for the public use, although with private
property for private gain, are not, in the absence of negligence, subject to action in behalf of
owners of neighboring private property for the ordinary damages attributable to the operation of
the railroad, a property owner may be entitled to compensation for such special damages as
devolve exclusively upon his property and not equally upon all the neighboring property.
In this case, held that an owner of property near the portal of a tunnel in the District of Columbia
constructed under authority of Congress, while not entitled to compensation for damages caused
by the usual gases and smoke emitted from the tunnel by reason of the proper operation of the
railroad, is entitled to compensation for such direct, peculiar and substantial damages as specially
affect his property and diminish its value.

12) US v Causby 328 US 256

Facts: Respondents own 2.8 acres near an airport outside of Greensboro, North Carolina.
Respondents’ property contained a house and a chicken farm. The end of one of the runways of
the airport was 2,220 feet from Respondents’ property, and the glide path passed over the
property at 83 feet, which is 67 feet above the house, 63 feet above the barn, and 18 feet above
the highest tree. The use by the United States of this airport is pursuant to a lease beginning June
1, 1942, and ending June 30, 1942, with provisions for renewal until June 30, 1967, or six
months after the end of the national emergency, whichever is earlier. The United States’ four
motored bombers make loud noises when flying above the property, and have very bright lights.
Respondents’ chicken farm production had to stop, because 150 chickens were killed by flying
into walls from fright. In the Court of Claims, it was found that the United States had taken an
easement over the property on June 1, 1942, and that the val
ue of the property depreciation as the result of the easement was $2,000.00. The United States
petitioned for certiorari, which was granted.

Issue: Has the Respondents’ property been taken within the meaning of the Fifth Amendment?

Held: Yes. But the case is remanded for a determination of the value of the easement and whether
the easement was permanent or temporary. The court noted the common law doctrine of
ownership of land extending to the sky above the land. However, the court notes that an act of
Congress had given the United States exclusive national sovereignty over the air space. The court
noted that common sense made the common law doctrine inapplicable. However, the court
found that the common law doctrine did not control the present case. The United States had
conceded in oral argument that if flights over the Respondents’ property rendered it
uninhabitable then there would be a taking compensable under the Fifth Amendment. The
measure of the value of the property taken is the owner’s loss, not the taker’s gain. The airspace
is a public highway. But it is obvious that if the landowner is to have the full enjoyment of his
land, he must have exclusive control of the immediate reaches of the enveloping atmosphere. If
this were not true then landowners could not build buildings, plant trees or run fences. The
airspace, apart from the immediate reaches above the land, is part of the public domain. The
court does not set the precise limits of the line of demarcation. Flights over private land are not a
taking, unless, like here, they are so low and frequent as to be a direct and immediate
interference with the enjoyment of the land. The Court of Claims must, upon remand, determine
the value of the easement and whether it is a temporary or permanent easement.

13) Visayan Refining Co. v Camus 40 Phil 550

Facts: The Governor-General directed the Attorney-General to cause condemnation proceedings

to be begun for the purpose of expropriating a tract of land of about 1,100,463 square meters,
called Camp Tomas Claudio. It is located in Parañaque, Province of Rizal, and lies along the
water front of Manila Bay. It is going to be used for military and aviation purposes.
The Attorney-General asked the court in the condemnation proceedings to give the Government
the possession of the land to be expropriated, after the necessary deposit should be made as
provided by law. The possession of land was granted in an order by the CFI Judge after the
deposit of P600,000 as the total value of the property. It being made to appear that a certificate of
deposit for the amount stated had been delivered to the provincial treasurer. It seems that the
money had been taken from the unexpended balance of the funds appropriated by Acts Nos. 2748
and 2785 of the Philippine Legislature for the use of the Militia Commission. The respondents
who are owners of the different portions of the property filed a demurrer and asked that the CFI
order be revoked.
Issue: 1. Whether or not, an Act of the Philippine Legislature authorizing the exercise of the
power of eminent domain to acquire land for military or aviation purposes is needed before
2. Whether or not, land can be expropriated by the Government in the absence of a legislative
appropriation especially destined to pay for the land to be taken?
Held: 1. General authority to exercise the power of eminent domain is expressly conferred on
the Government of the Philippine Island.
We are of the opinion that the contentions of the petitioners, in whatever way they may be
understood or expressed, are not well founded. There is one point at least on which all must
agree, namely, that if land can be taken by the Government for a public use at all, the use
intended to be made of the land now in question, that is, for military and aviation purposes, is a
public use. It is undeniable that a military establishment is essential to the maintenance of
organized society, and the courts will take judicial notice of the recent progress of the military
and naval arts resulting from the development of aeronautics.
Expropriation proceedings may be maintained upon the exclusive initiative of the Governor-
General, without the aid of any special legislative authority other than that already on the statute
books. Furthermore, if the Government complies with the requirements of law relative to the
making of a deposit in court, provisional possession of the property may be at once given to it,
just as is permitted in the case of any other person or entity authorized by law to exercise the
power eminent domain. Special legislative authority for the buying of a piece of land by the
Government is no more necessary than for buying a paper of pain; and in the case of a forced
taking of property against the will of the owner, all that can be required of the government is that
should be able to comply with the conditions laid down by law as and when those conditions
The contention that the authority to maintain such a proceeding cannot be delegated by the
Legislature to the Chief Executive, is in our opinion wholly erroneous and apparently has its
basis in a misconception of fundamentals. It is recognized by all writers that the power of
eminent domain is inseparable from sovereignty being essential to the existence of the State and
inherent in government even in its most primitive forms. Philosophers and legists may differ as
to the grounds upon which the exercise of this high power is to be justified, but no one can
question its existence. No law, therefore, is ever necessary to confer this right upon sovereignty
or upon any government exercising sovereign or quasi-sovereign powers.
The power of eminent domain, with respect to the conditions under which the property is taken,
must of course be exercised in subjection to all the restraints imposed by constitutional or
organic law. The two provisions by which the exercise of this power is chiefly limited in this
jurisdiction are found in the third section of the Jones Act, already mentioned, which among
other things declares (1) that no law shall be enacted which shall deprive any person of property
without due process of law and (2) that private property shall not be taken for public use without
just compensation. The latter of these provisions is directly aimed at the taking of property under
the exercise of the power of eminent domain; and as this requirement, in connection with the
statutes enacted to make sure the payment of compensation, usually affords all the protection that
the owner of property can claim, it results that the due process clause is rarely invoked by the
owner in expropriation proceedings.
2. Counsel for the petitioners say that money appropriated for the purpose of the Militia
Commission cannot be lawfully used to acquire the land which is now the subject of
expropriation, because no authority for the exercise of the power of eminent domain is to be
found in any of the Acts appropriating money for said Commission; from whence it is argued
that the certificate of deposit affords no protection to the owners of property.
The point appears to be one of little general importance, and we will not multiply words over it.
Suffice it to say that in our opinion the Insular Auditor was acting within his authority when he
let this money out of the Insular Treasury; and being now within the control of the lower court, it
will doubtless in due time be applied to the purpose for which the deposit was made.

14) Guido v RPA 84 Phil 847


1) Lladoc v Commission of Internal Revenue 14 SCRA 292

Facts: Sometime in 1957, M.B. Estate Inc., of Bacolod City, donated 10,000.00 pesos in cash to
Fr. Crispin Ruiz, the parish priest of Victorias, Negros Occidental, and predecessor of Fr. Lladoc,
for the construction of a new Catholic church in the locality. The donated amount was spent for
such purpose.
On March 3, 1958, the donor M.B. Estate filed the donor's gift tax return. Under date of April 29,
1960. Commissioner of Internal Revenue issued an assessment for the donee's gift tax against the
Catholic Parish of Victorias of which petitioner was the parish priest.
Issue: Whether or not the imposition of gift tax despite the fact the Fr. Lladoc was not the Parish
priest at the time of donation, Catholic Parish priest of Victorias did not have juridical
personality as the constitutional exemption for religious purpose is valid.
Held: Yes, imposition of the gift tax was valid, under Section 22(3) Article VI of the Constitution
contemplates exemption only from payment of taxes assessed on such properties as Property
taxes contra distinguished from Excise taxes The imposition of the gift tax on the property used
for religious purpose is not a violation of the Constitution. A gift tax is not a property by way of
gift inter vivos.
The head of the Diocese and not the parish priest is the real party in interest in the imposition of
the donee's tax on the property donated to the church for religious purpose.
2) Punzalan v Municipal Board of Manila 95 Phil 46

Facts: Petitioners, who are professionals in the city, assail Ordinance No. 3398 together with the
law authorizing it (Section 18 of the Revised Charter of the City of Manila). The ordinance
imposes a municipal occupation tax on persons exercising various professions in the city and
penalizes non-payment of the same. The law authorizing said ordinance empowers the Municipal
Board of the city to impose a municipal occupation tax on persons engaged in various
professions. Petitioners, having already paid their occupation tax under section 201 of the
National Internal Revenue Code, paid the tax under protest as imposed by Ordinance No. 3398.
The lower court declared the ordinance invalid and affirmed the validity of the law authorizing it.
Issue: Whether or Not the ordinance and law authorizing it constitute class legislation, and
authorize what amounts to double taxation.
Held: The Legislature may, in its discretion, select what occupations shall be taxed, and in its
discretion may tax all, or select classes of occupation for taxation, and leave others untaxed. It is
not for the courts to judge which cities or municipalities should be empowered to impose
occupation taxes aside from that imposed by the National Government. That matter is within the
domain of political departments. The argument against double taxation may not be invoked if
one tax is imposed by the state and the other is imposed by the city. It is widely recognized that
there is nothing inherently terrible in the requirement that taxes be exacted with respect to the
same occupation by both the state and the political subdivisions thereof. Judgment of the lower
court is reversed with regards to the ordinance and affirmed as to the law authorizing it.


1) Ermita Malate Hotel and Motel Operators v City of Manila 20 SCRA 849

Facts: On June 13, 1963, the Municipal Board of Manila passed Ordinance No. 4760 with the
following provisions questioned for its violation of due process:
refraining from entertaining or accepting any guest or customer unless it fills out a prescribed
form in the lobby in open view;
prohibiting admission o less than 18 years old;
usurious increase of license fee to P4,500 and 6,000 o 150% and 200% respectively (tax issue
making unlawful lease or rent more than twice every 24 hours; and
cancellation of license for subsequent violation.
The lower court issued preliminary injunction and petitioners raised the case to SC on certiorari.

Issue: Is the ordinance compliant with the due process requirement of the constitution?

Held: Ordinance is a valid exercise of police power to minimize certain practices hurtful to
public morals. There is no violation o constitutional due process for being reasonable and the
ordinance is enjoys the presumption of constitutionality absent any irregularity on its face.
Taxation may be made to implement a police power and the amount, object, and instance of
taxation is dependent upon the local legislative body. Judgment of lower court reversed and
injunction lifted.
2) Inchong v Hernandez 101 Phil 1155

The Legislature passed R.A. 1180 (An Act to Regulate the Retail Business). Its purpose was to
prevent persons who are not citizens of the Phil. from having a stranglehold upon the people’s
economic life.
A prohibition against aliens and against associations, partnerships, or corporations the capital of
which are not wholly owned by Filipinos, from engaging directly or indirectly in the retail trade
aliens actually engaged in the retail business on May 15, 1954 are allowed to continue their
business, unless their licenses are forfeited in accordance with law, until their death or voluntary
retirement. In case of juridical persons, ten years after the approval of the Act or until the
expiration of term, citizens and juridical entities of the United States were exempted from this
Provision for the forfeiture of licenses to engage in the retail business for violation of the laws on
nationalization, economic control weights and measures and labor and other laws relating to
trade, commerce and industry.
Provision against the establishment or opening by aliens actually engaged in the retail business
of additional stores or branches of retail business
Lao Ichong, in his own behalf and behalf of other alien residents, corporations and partnerships
affected by the Act, filed an action to declare it unconstitutional for the ff: reasons:
1. It denies to alien residents the equal protection of the laws and deprives them of their liberty
and property without due process;
2. The subject of the Act is not expressed in the title;
3. The Act violates international and treaty obligations; and
4. The provisions of the Act against the transmission by aliens of their retail business thru
hereditary succession.

Issues: Whether or not, the Act deprives the aliens of the equal protection of the laws.

Held: The law is a valid exercise of police power and it does not deny the aliens the equal
protection of the laws. There are real and actual, positive and fundamental differences between
an alien and a citizen, which fully justify the legislative classification adopted.
The equal protection clause does not demand absolute equality among residents. It merely
requires that all persons shall be treated alike, under like circumstances and conditions both as to
privileges conferred and liabilities enforced.
The classification is actual, real and reasonable, and all persons of one class are treated alike.
The difference in status between citizens and aliens constitutes a basis for reasonable
classification in the exercise of police power.
Official statistics point out to the ever-increasing dominance and control by alien of the retail
trade. It is this domination and control that is the legislature’s target in the enactment of the Act.
The mere fact of alienage is the root cause of the distinction between the alien and the national as
a trader. The alien is naturally lacking in that spirit of loyalty and enthusiasm for the Phil. where
he temporarily stays and makes his living. The alien owes no allegiance or loyalty to the State,
and the State cannot rely on him/her in times of crisis or emergency.
While the citizen holds his life, his person and his property subject to the needs of the country,
the alien may become the potential enemy of the State.
The alien retailer has shown such utter disregard for his customers and the people on whom he
makes his profit. Through the illegitimate use of pernicious designs and practices, the alien now
enjoys a monopolistic control on the nation’s economy endangering the national security in times
of crisis and emergency.

3) Javier v COMELEC 144 SCRA 194

Facts: The petitioner and the private respondent were candidates in Antique for the Batasang
Pambansa in the May 1984 elections. The former appeared to enjoy more popular support but the
latter had the advantage of being the nominee of the KBL with all its perquisites of power. On
May 13, 1984, the eve of the elections, the bitter contest between the two came to a head when
several followers of the petitioner were ambushed and killed, allegedly by the latter's men. Seven
suspects, including respondent Pacificador, are now facing trial for these murders. Owing to
what he claimed were attempts to railroad the private respondent's proclamation, the petitioner
went to the Commission on Elections to question the canvass of the election returns. His
complaints were dismissed and the private respondent was proclaimed winner by the Second
Division of the said body. The petitioner thereupon came to this Court, arguing that the
proclamation was void because made only by a division and not by the Commission on Elections
en banc as required by the Constitution. Meanwhile, on the strength of his proclamation, the
private respondent took his oath as a member of the Batasang Pambansa.

Issue: Whether or Not the Second Division of the Commission on Elections authorized to
promulgate its decision of July 23, 1984, proclaiming the private respondent the winner in the

Held: This Court has repeatedly and consistently demanded "the cold neutrality of an impartial
judge" as the indispensable imperative of due process. To bolster that requirement, we have held
that the judge must not only be impartial but must also appear to be impartial as an added
assurance to the parties that his decision will be just. The litigants are entitled to no less than that.
They should be sure that when their rights are violated they can go to a judge who shall give
them justice. They must trust the judge, otherwise they will not go to him at all. They must
believe in his sense of fairness, otherwise they will not seek his judgment. Without such
confidence, there would be no point in invoking his action for the justice they expect.

Due process is intended to insure that confidence by requiring compliance with what Justice
Frankfurter calls the rudiments of fair play. Fair play cans for equal justice. There cannot be
equal justice where a suitor approaches a court already committed to the other party and with a
judgment already made and waiting only to be formalized after the litigants shall have undergone
the charade of a formal hearing. Judicial (and also extra-judicial) proceedings are not
orchestrated plays in which the parties are supposed to make the motions and reach the
denouement according to a prepared script. There is no writer to foreordain the ending. The
judge will reach his conclusions only after all the evidence is in and all the arguments are filed,
on the basis of the established facts and the pertinent law.

The Facts: On June 8, 2001, Congress enacted Republic Act No. 9136, known as the Electric
Power Industry Reform Act of 2001 (EPIRA). Among other reforms in the electric power
industry, this law created the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC), which superseded the
Energy Regulatory Board. Section 36[1] of the EPIRA directed all distribution utilities to file
with ERC an application for the approval of their unbundled rates. Respondent Meralco
complied with this requirement. The ERC acted on the application of respondent and, in a
Decision dated March 20, 2003, approved the latter’s unbundled schedule of rates effective in the
next billing schedule. In the same Decision, however, the ERC directed it to do the following,
among others: “a) To discontinue charging the PPA [Purchased Power Adjustment] upon
effectivity of the approved unbundled rates; any change in the cost of power purchased shall be
reflected as deferred charges or credits which shall be recovered through the Generation Rate
Adjustment Mechanism (GRAM) approved by the Commission for implementation per ERC
Order effective February 24, 2003;”[2] In other words, Meralco was directed to recover the costs
of power purchased from the National Power Corporation (NAPOCOR) through the new
Generation Rate Adjustment Mechanism (GRAM). Previously, these costs were recovered
through the Purchased Power Adjustment (PPA) mechanism. In its February 24, 2003 Order
issued in another proceeding, ERC Case No. 2003-44,[3] the ERC apparently conducted public
consultations with the distribution utilities and the consumer groups, including Petitioner
National Association of Electricity Consumers for Reforms (Nasecore). The ERC adopted the
“Implementing Rules for the Recovery of Fuel and Independent Power Producer Costs [under
the] Generation Rate Adjustment Mechanism (GRAM)” and the “Implementing Rules for the
Recovery of the Incremental Currency Exchange Rate Adjustment (ICERA).” The GRAM and
ICERA were formulated by the ERC to replace the Purchased Power Adjustment (PPA) and the
Currency Exchange Rate Adjustment (CERA) -- the automatic adjustment mechanisms then in
effect. In its view, neither of these adjustment mechanisms met the goal of balancing its need to
review the reasonableness and prudence of these costs with the need of the utilities for a timely
recovery of costs.[4] The effectivity clauses of the implementing rules of the GRAM and the
ICERA provided that these should take effect immediately.[5] Afterwards, in consonance with
the above Decision and Order, Meralco filed with the ERC an amended application entitled “In
the Matter of the Application for the Recovery of the Independent Power Producer Costs under
the Generation Rate Adjustment Mechanism (GRAM),” docketed as ERC Case No. 2004-112.
Meralco sought to increase its generation charge of P3.1886 per kWh -- earlier allowed in the
ERC Order dated January 21, 2004 -- to P3.4664 per kWh, allegedly computed in conformity
with the generation rate formula in Section 6[6] of the GRAM implementing rules. In its June 2,
2004 Order, the ERC approved the increase in Respondent Meralco’s generation charge, albeit
only from P3.1886 to P3.3213 per kWh, to take effect immediately. Consequently, Petitioners
Nasecore et al. filed with the Court a Petition for Certiorari, seeking to nullify the June 2, 2004
ERC Order. The lack of requisite publication of Respondent Meralco’s amended application
allegedly deprived them of procedural due process. They also invoked Section 4(e), Rule 3[7] of
the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of the EPIRA. Respondent asserted the
inapplicability of Section 4(e), Rule 3 of the IRR of the EPIRA, requiring the publication of its
application in a newspaper of general circulation and the service of a copy on the concerned local
government units. Its amended application for the increase in its generation charge was
supposedly governed by the GRAM Implementing Rules[8] adopted by the ERC in the Order
dated February 24, 2003 in ERC Case No. 2003-44. Like Meralco, the ERC asserted that the
procedure prescribed under the GRAM Implementing Rules, particularly Sections 2[9] and 5,
[10] radically differed from that provided for in Section 4(e), Rule 3 of the IRR of the EPIRA.
Specifically, the GRAM Implementing Rules did not require the prior publication of the
application of a distribution utility, like Respondent Meralco, or the solicitation of comments of
local government units and the consumers. The procedure prescribed by the GRAM
Implementing Rules was markedly different from that of the IRR of the EPIRA. The GRAM was
intended to be an adjustment mechanism and not an independent rate application, which was the
scheme that fell within the contemplation of the IRR of the EPIRA.

Issue: The sole issue raised by the parties was whether the ERC had committed grave abuse of
discretion in issuing the Order dated June 2, 2004, in ERC Case No. 2004- 112. The Order
approved the increase in Respondent Meralco’s generation charge from P3.1886 to P3.3213 per
kWh, effective immediately without publication of the amended application.

Held: On February 2, 2006, the Supreme Court en banc, through Mr. Justice Romeo S. Callejo
Sr., promulgated its unanimous Decision. It held that the ERC had committed grave abuse of
discretion in issuing the assailed June 2, 2004 Order. The Court found that the amended
application of Meralco for an increase in its generation charge had not been published in a
newspaper of general circulation, in violation of Section 4(e), Rule 3 of the IRR of EPIRA. The
Court explained that, contrary to the stance taken by respondents, the amended application of
Meralco for an increase in its generation charge was covered by Section 4(e), Rule 3 of the IRR
of the EPIRA. This rule could not have been any clearer with respect to its coverage, as it
referred to “any application or petition for rate adjustment or for any relief affecting the
consumers” without making any distinctions. Hence, falling within the contemplation of the rule
was any application or petition that would result in an adjustment in the total price (retail rate)
paid by the end-users, whether this adjustment was occasioned by a change in the charges for
generation, transmission, distribution, supply, or some other factor. That the amended application
of Meralco was nonetheless covered by the said provision was mandated by the fact that the
relief prayed for would clearly affect the consumers. The costs of their electricity consumption
would increase. The Court recalled its ruling in Freedom from Debt Coalition v. ERC, [11] which
had outlined the requirements of Section 4(e), Rule 3 of the IRR of the EPIRA, as follows: 1.
The applicant must file with the ERC a verified application/petition for rate adjustment. It must
indicate that a copy thereof was received by the legislative body of the LGU concerned. It must
also include a certification of the notice of publication thereof in a newspaper of general
circulation in the same locality. 2. Within 30 days from receipt of the application/petition or the
publication thereof, any consumer affected by the proposed rate adjustment or the LGU
concerned may file its comment on the application/petition, as well as on the motion for
provisional rate adjustment. 3. If such comment is filed, the ERC must consider it in its action on
the motion for provisional rate adjustment, together with the documents submitted by the
applicant in support of the application/petition. If no such comment is filed within the 30-day
period, then and only then may the ERC resolve the provisional rate adjustment on the basis of
the documents submitted by the applicant. 4. However, the ERC need not conduct a hearing on
the motion for provisional rate adjustment. It is sufficient that it consider the written comment, if
there is any. 5. The ERC must resolve the motion for provisional rate adjustment within 75 days
from the filing of the application/petition. 6. Thereafter, the ERC must conduct a full-blown
hearing on the application/petition not later than 30 days from the date of issuance of the
provisional order. Effectively, this provision limits the lifetime of the provisional order to only 12
months.[12] Introduced under the foregoing process were important requirements, among which
were the following: first, the publication of the application itself -- not merely the notice of
hearing issued by the ERC -- in a newspaper of general circulation in the locality where the
applicant would operate; and, second, the need for the ERC to consider the comments or
pleadings of the customers and the LGU concerned on the application or motion for provisional
rate adjustment.[13] The new requirements under Sec. 4(e), Rule 3 of the IRR of EPIRA, were
aimed at protecting the consumers and diminishing the disparity or imbalance between them and
the utility. Indeed, the requirements addressed their right to due process and at the same time
advanced the cause of people empowerment which, along with consumer protection, was
EPIRA’s policy goal. The failure of Respondent Meralco to publish its amended application for
an increase in its generation charge was thus fatal. By this omission, the consumers were
deprived of the right to file their comments on the increase applied for. Consequently, without
giving them any opportunity to file their comments, in violation of Section 4(e) of Rule 3 of the
IRR of the EPIRA, the ERC issued the assailed Order dated June 2, 2004. It approved the sought
increase in Meralco’s generation charge from P3.1886 to P3.3213 per kWh, effective
immediately. Indeed, the basic postulate of due process ordained that the consumers be notified
of any application and apprised of its contents in order for them to determine if their economic
burden would consequently be compounded. In this case, the consumers had the right to be
informed of the bases of Respondent Meralco’s amended application, so that they could
effectively contest the increase applied for, if they so desired. At this point, it should be stated
that the apprehension of respondent about being subjected to a long and tedious process with
respect to the recovery of its fuel and purchased power costs was, in fact, addressed by the power
of the ERC to grant provisional rate adjustments. The ERC was not, of course, precluded from
promulgating rules, guidelines or methodology -- such as the GRAM -- for the recovery by the
distribution utilities of their fuel and purchased power costs. These issuances, however, should
conform to the requirements of pertinent laws, including Section 4(e) of Rule 3 of the IRR of the
EPIRA.[14] There was another compelling reason why the reliance by Respondent Meralco and
the ERC on the GRAM Implementing Rules was unavailing. It did not appear from the records
that these rules, as set forth in the ERC Order dated February 24, 2003 (in ERC Case No. 2003-
44), had been published in the Official Gazette or in a newspaper of general circulation. This
omission violated the basic requirement of publication under Executive Order No. 200.
Moreover, according to the Certification dated January 11, 2006, issued by the Office of the
National Administrative Register (ONAR), neither had the GRAM Implementing Rules been
filed with that office, in contravention of the Administrative Code of 1987.[15] Failure to publish
these rules violated the fundamental principle of due process, as enunciated by the Court in the
landmark case Tanada v. Tuvera; [16] hence, they must be declared ineffective.

5) Nebbia v State of New York 291 US 502

Facts: The New York legislature established a Milk Control Board that was vested with the
power to “fix minimum and maximum retail prices” for milk sold within the state. Appellant, Mr.
Nebbia, an owner of a New York grocery store, was convicted of selling milk for prices in excess
of the price set by the Board. The said price control regulation survived a Constitutional attack
because it was not found to be arbitrary, discriminatory, or demonstrably irrelevant to the policy
adopted by the legislature. Price controls that are arbitrary, discriminatory, or demonstrably
irrelevant to the policies of the legislature, are unconstitutional because they are unnecessary and
unwarranted interferences with individual liberty.

Issue: Whether the Constitution prohibits a state from fixing the selling price of milk?

Held: No. Judgment affirmed. The production and distribution of milk is a paramount industry of
the state and largely affects the health and prosperity of its people. Property rights and contract
rights are not absolute in nature and may be subject to limitations. Since the price controls were
not “arbitrary, discriminatory, or demonstrably irrelevant” to the policy adopted by the legislature
to promote the general welfare, it was consistent with the Constitution.

This decision marked a significant shift from the Lochner era by reducing the judicial role in
scrutinizing the means employed in economic regulations – both in its announced standard that
“the means selected shall have a real and substantial relation to the object sought to be attained”
and in its examination of the background of the legislation.

6) Reyes v CA 80 SCRA 114

Facts: Petitioners Romeo Reyes, Angel Parayao and Emilio Mananghaya question the
respondent Court’s decision, which affirmed with modification the agrarian court’s decision,
which ordered them and the other defendants therein to, among others, restore possession of the
disputed landholding to private respondent, Eufrocina Vda. dela Cruz.
Juan Mendoza, father of defendant Olympio, is the owner of farm lots in Bahay Pare, Candaba,
Pampanga. Devoted to the production of palay, the lots were tenanted and cultivated by now
deceased Julian dela Cruz, husband of plaintiff Eufrocina dela Cruz.
Eufrocina alleged that her husband’s death, she succeeded him as bona fide tenant of the subject
lots; that Olympio, in conspiracy with the other defendants, prevented her daughter Violeta and
her workers through force, intimidation, strategy and stealth, from entering and working on the
subject premises; and that until the filing of the instant case, defendants had refused to vacate
and surrender the lots, thus violating her tenancy rights. Plaintiff therefore prayed for judgment
for the recovery of possession and damages with a writ of preliminary mandatory injunction in
the meantime.
Defendant barangay officials denied interference in the tenancy relationship existing between
plaintiff and defendant Mendoza, particularly in the cultivation of the latter’s farm lots and asked
for the dismissal of the case, moral damages and attorney’s fees.
Mendoza raised abandonment, sublease and mortgage of the farm lots without his consent and
approval, and non-payment of rentals, irrigation fees and other taxes due the government, as his
Petitioners now bring the present Petition for Review on Certiorari.
Issue: Whether or not, the court erred in holding petitioners liable.
Held: No. The evidence presented before the trial court and CA served as basis in arriving at
their findings of fact. The Supreme Court will not analyze such evidence all over again because
settled is the rule that only questions of law may be raised in a petition for review on certiorari
under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court absent the exceptions which do not obtain in the instant
In agrarian cases, the quantum of evidence is no more than substantial evidence. Substantial
evidence does not necessarily import preponderant evidence, as is required in an ordinarily civil
case. It has been defined to be such relevant evidence as a reasonable mind might accept as
adequate to support a conclusion and its absence is not shown by stressing that there is contrary
evidence on record, direct or circumstantial, for the appellate court cannot substitute its own
judgment or criteria for that of the trial court in determining wherein lies the weight of evidence
or what evidence is entitled to belief.

7) Rubi v Prov Board of Mindoro 39 Phil 660

Facts: The case is an application for habeas corpus in favor of Rubi and other Manguianes of the
Province of Mindoro. It is alleged that the Maguianes are being illegally deprived of their liberty
by the provincial officials of that province. Rubi and his companions are said to be held on the
reservation established at Tigbao, Mindoro, against their will, and one Dabalos is said to be held
under the custody of the provincial sheriff in the prison at Calapan for having run away from the
The provincial governor of Mindoro and the provincial board thereof directed the Manguianes in
question to take up their habitation in Tigbao, a site on the shore of Lake Naujan, selected by the
provincial governor and approved by the provincial board. The action was taken in accordance
with section 2145 of the Administrative Code of 1917, and was duly approved by the Secretary
of the Interior as required by said action.
Section 2145 of the Administrative Code of 1917 reads as follows:
SEC. 2145. Establishment of non-Christian upon sites selected by provincial governor. — With
the prior approval of the Department Head, the provincial governor of any province in which
non-Christian inhabitants are found is authorized, when such a course is deemed necessary in the
interest of law and order, to direct such inhabitants to take up their habitation on sites on
unoccupied public lands to be selected by him an approved by the provincial board.
Petitioners, however, challenge the validity of this section of the Administrative Code.
Issues: Whether or not, Section 2145 of the Administrative Code of 1917 constitute an unlawful
delegation of legislative power by the Philippine Legislature to a provincial official and a
department head is unconstitutional.
Held: No. The Philippine Legislature has here conferred authority upon the Province of Mindoro,
to be exercised by the provincial governor and the provincial board.
In determining whether the delegation of legislative power is valid or not, the distinction is
between the delegation of power to make the law, which necessarily involves a discretion as to
what it shall be, and conferring an authority or discretion as to its execution, to be exercised
under and in pursuance of the law. The first cannot be done; to the later no valid objection can be
made. Discretion may be committed by the Legislature to an executive department or official.
The Legislature may make decisions of executive departments of subordinate official thereof, to
whom it has committed the execution of certain acts, final on questions of fact. The growing
tendency in the decision is to give prominence to the "necessity" of the case.
In enacting the said provision of the Administrative Code, the Legislature merely conferred upon
the provincial governor, with the approval of the provincial board and the Department Head,
discretionary authority as to the execution of the law. This is necessary since the provincial
governor and the provincial board, as the official representatives of the province, are better
qualified to judge “when such as course is deemed necessary in the interest of law and order”. As
officials charged with the administration of the province and the protection of its inhabitants,
they are better fitted to select sites which have the conditions most favorable for improving the
people who have the misfortune of being in a backward state.
Hence, Section 2145 of the Administrative Code of 1917 is not an unlawful delegation of
legislative power by the Philippine Legislature to provincial official and a department head.

8) Tanada v Tuvera 146 SCRA 446

Facts: This is a motion for reconsideration of the decision promulgated on April 24, 1985. Respondent
argued that while publication was necessary as a rule, it was not so when it was “otherwise” as when the
decrees themselves declared that they were to become effective immediately upon their approval.

Issues: 1. Whether or not a distinction be made between laws of general applicability and laws which are
not as to their publication;
2. Whether or not a publication shall be made in publications of general circulation.

Held: The clause “unless it is otherwise provided” refers to the date of effectivity and not to the
requirement of publication itself, which cannot in any event be omitted. This clause does not mean that
the legislature may make the law effective immediately upon approval, or in any other date, without its
previous publication.

“Laws” should refer to all laws and not only to those of general application, for strictly speaking, all laws
relate to the people in general albeit there are some that do not apply to them directly. A law without any
bearing on the public would be invalid as an intrusion of privacy or as class legislation or as an ultra vires
act of the legislature. To be valid, the law must invariably affect the public interest eve if it might be directly
applicable only to one individual, or some of the people only, and not to the public as a whole.

All statutes, including those of local application and private laws, shall be published as a condition for their
effectivity, which shall begin 15 days after publication unless a different effectivity date is fixed by the

Publication must be in full or it is no publication at all, since its purpose is to inform the public of the
content of the law.

Article 2 of the Civil Code provides that publication of laws must be made in the Official Gazette, and not
elsewhere, as a requirement for their effectivity. The Supreme Court is not called upon to rule upon the
wisdom of a law or to repeal or modify it if it finds it impractical.

The publication must be made forthwith, or at least as soon as possible.

Laws must come out in the open in the clear light of the sun instead of skulking in the shadows with their
dark, deep secrets. Mysterious pronouncements and rumored rules cannot be recognized as binding
unless their existence and contents are confirmed by a valid publication intended to make full disclosure
and give proper notice to the people. The furtive law is like a scabbarded saber that cannot faint, parry or
cut unless the naked blade is drawn.

9) Tumey v Ohio 273 US 510

Tumey v. Ohio was a case considered by the United States Supreme Court in 1927. The court
struck down an Ohio law that denied citizens their constitutionally guaranteed right to due
process by financially rewarding public officials for successfully prosecuting cases related to
Following the adoption of the Eighteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution in 1919,
the Ohio government implemented stringent measures to enforce Prohibition within the state's
borders. One law, the Crabbe Act, compensated mayors, justices of the peace, various judges,
and other law enforcement officials with additional money beyond their normal pay whenever
they arrested, convicted, and fined violators of the Eighteenth Amendment. Many legal officials
sought to extend their jurisdiction into nearby cities to arrest and prosecute more violators and to
enhance the judges' own paychecks.
This particular law became the foundation for Tumey v. Ohio, a case before the United States
Supreme Court, in 1927. In North College Hill, Ohio, a man was arrested for illegally possessing
alcohol, a violation of the Eighteenth Amendment. This man contended that the law
compensating officials with additional money for liquor cases violated the Fourteenth
Amendment of the United States Constitution by depriving him of "due process of law."
Attorneys for the accused man claimed that judges were more likely to convict accused people
because convictions increased the judges' and other law enforcement officials' salaries. In March
1927, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the plaintiff over the defendant, the State of Ohio.
Upon losing the case before the Supreme Court, the Ohio legislature attempted to enact another
law that would compensate judges for hearing additional cases beyond a normal number. It
would not matter how the judges ruled in the cases; the state and local governments would
guarantee the judges' additional pay. This legislation was never implemented. Ohio voters
defeated the measure in a referendum in the autumn of 1927 by a two-to-one advantage.
Tumey v. Ohio and the events that resulted from it illustrate the divisions among Ohioans over


1) Brown v Board of Education of Topeka 349 US 294

Facts. The Plaintiffs, various black children (Plaintiffs), were denied admission to schools
attended by white children under laws that permitted or required segregation by race. Plaintiffs
sued, seeking admission to public schools in their communities on a nonsegregated basis.

Issue. Whether or not, “separate but equal” laws in the area of public education deprive black
children of the equal protection of the laws guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment of the
United States Constitution.

Held. Yes. Chief Justice Earl Warren (J. Warren) stated that even if the “tangible” factors of
segregated schools are equal, to separate black children from others of similar age and
qualifications solely on the basis of race, generates a feeling of inferiority with respect to their
status in the community and may affect their hearts and minds in a way unlikely to ever be
2) People v Cayat 60 Phil 12

Facts: Accused Cayat, a native of Baguio, Benguet, Mountain Province, and a member of the
non-Christian tribes, was found guilty of violating sections 2 and 3 of Act No. 1639 for having
acquired and possessed one bottle of A-1-1 gin, an intoxicating liquor, which is not a native
wine. The law made it unlawful for any native of the Philippines who is a member of a non-
Christian tribe within the meaning of Act 1397 to buy, receive, have in his possession, or drink
any ardent spirits, ale, beer, wine or intoxicating liquors of any kind, other than the so-called
native wines and liquors which the members of such tribes have been accustomed to prior to the
passage of the law.

Issues: Whether or not, Act 1639 is unconstitutional on the grounds that it is discriminatory and
denies the equal protection of the laws, violates due process clause, and is an improper exercise
of police power.

Held: No. It is an established principle of constitutional law that the guaranty of the equal
protection of the laws is not violated by a legislation based on reasonable classification. (1) must
rest on substantial distinctions; (2) must be germane to the purposes of the law; (3) must not be
limited to existing conditions only; and (4) must apply equally to all members of the same class.

Act No. 1639 satisfies these requirements. The classification rests on real or substantial, not
merely imaginary or whimsical distinctions. It is not based upon “accident of birth or parentage,”
as counsel for the appellant asserts, but upon the degree of civilization and culture. “The term
‘non-Christian tribes’ refers, not to religious belief but in a way, to the geographical area and
more directly, to natives of the Philippine Islands of a low grade of civilization, usually living in
tribal relationship apart from settled communities.” (Rubi vs. Provincial Board of Mindora,
supra.) This distinction is unquestionably reasonable, for the Act was intended to meet the
peculiar conditions existing in the non-Christian tribes.

The prohibition enshrined in Act 1397 is designed to insure peace and order in and among non-
Christian tribes. It applies equally to all members of the class evident from perusal thereof. That
it may be unfair in its operation against a certain number of non-Christians by reason of their
degree of culture, is not an argument against the equality of its application.

3) People v Vera 65 Phil 56

Facts: In 1934, Mariano Cu Unjieng was convicted in a criminal case filed against him by the
Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation (HSBC). In 1936, he filed for probation. The
matter was referred to the Insular Probation Office which recommended the denial of Cu
Unjieng’s petition for probation. A hearing was set by Judge Jose Vera concerning the petition for
probation. The Prosecution opposed the petition. Eventually, due to delays in the hearing, the
Prosecution filed a petition for certiorari with the Supreme Court alleging that courts like the
Court of First Instance of Manila (which is presided over by Judge Vera) have no jurisdiction to
place accused like Cu Unjieng under probation because under the law (Act No. 4221 or The
Probation Law), probation is only meant to be applied in provinces with probation officers; that
the City of Manila is not a province, and that Manila, even if construed as a province, has no
designated probation officer – hence, a Manila court cannot grant probation.
Meanwhile, HSBC also filed its own comment on the matter alleging that Act 4221 is
unconstitutional for it violates the constitutional guarantee on equal protection of the laws.
HSBC averred that the said law makes it the prerogative of provinces whether or nor to apply the
probation law – if a province chooses to apply the probation law, then it will appoint a probation
officer, but if it will not, then no probation officer will be appointed – hence, that makes it
violative of the equal protection clause.
Further, HSBC averred that the Probation Law is an undue delegation of power because it gave
the option to the provincial board to whether or not to apply the probation law – however, the
legislature did not provide guidelines to be followed by the provincial board.
Further still, HSBC averred that the Probation Law is an encroachment of the executive’s power
to grant pardon. They say that the legislature, by providing for a probation law, had in effect
encroached upon the executive’s power to grant pardon. (Ironically, the Prosecution agreed with
the issues raised by HSBC – ironic because their main stance was the non-applicability of the
probation law only in Manila while recognizing its application in provinces).
For his part, one of the issues raised by Cu Unjieng is that, the Prosecution, representing the
State as well as the People of the Philippines, cannot question the validity of a law, like Act
4221, which the State itself created. Further, Cu Unjieng also castigated the fiscal of Manila who
himself had used the Probation Law in the past without question but is now questioning the
validity of the said law (estoppel).

Issues: 1. Whether or not, the State can question its own laws.
2. Whether or not, Act 4221 is constitutional.

Held: 1. Yes. There is no law which prohibits the State, or its duly authorized representative,
from questioning the validity of a law. Estoppel will also not lie against the State even if it had
been using an invalid law.
2. No, Act 4221 or the [old] Probation Law is unconstitutional.

Violation of the Equal Protection Clause

The contention of HSBC and the Prosecution is well taken on this note. There is violation of the
equal protection clause. Under Act 4221, provinces were given the option to apply the law by
simply providing for a probation officer. So if a province decides not to install a probation
officer, then the accused within said province will be unduly deprived of the provisions of the
Probation Law.

Undue Delegation of Legislative Power

There is undue delegation of legislative power. Act 4221 provides that it shall only apply to
provinces where the respective provincial boards have provided for a probation officer. But
nowhere in the law did it state as to what standard (sufficient standard test) should provincial
boards follow in determining whether or not to apply the probation law in their province. This
only creates a roving commission which will act arbitrarily according to its whims.
Encroachment of Executive Power
Though Act 4221 is unconstitutional, the Supreme Court recognized the power of Congress to
provide for probation. Probation does not encroach upon the President’s power to grant pardon.
Probation is not pardon. Probation is within the power of Congress to fix penalties while pardon
is a power of the president to commute penalties.

4) Phil Judges Association v Prado 227 SCRA 703

Facts: Section 35 of Republic Act No. 7354 authorized the Philippine Postal Corporation (PPC)
to withdraw franking privileges from certain government agencies. Franking privilege is a
privilege granted to certain agencies to make use of the Philippine postal service free of charge.
In 1992, a study came about where it was determined that the bulk of the expenditure of the
postal service comes from the judiciary’s use of the postal service (issuance of court processes).
Hence, the postal service recommended that the franking privilege be withdrawn from the
judiciary. AS a result, the PPC issued a circular withdrawing the said franking privilege.
The Philippine Judges Association (PJA) assailed the circular and questioned the validity of
Section 35 of RA 7354. PJA claimed that the said provision is violative of the equal protection

Issues: Whether or not the withdrawal of the franking privilege from the judiciary is valid.

Held: No. The Supreme Court ruled that there is a violation of the equal protection clause. The
judiciary needs the franking privilege so badly as it is vital to its operation. Evident to that need
is the high expense allotted to the judiciary’s franking needs. The Postmaster cannot be sustained
in contending that the removal of the franking privilege from the judiciary is in order to cut
expenditure. This is untenable for if the Postmaster would intend to cut expenditure by removing
the franking privilege of the judiciary, then they should have removed the franking privilege all
at once from all the other departments. If the problem is the loss of revenues from the franking
privilege, the remedy is to withdraw it altogether from all agencies of the government, including
those who do not need it. The problem is not solved by retaining it for some and withdrawing it
from others, especially where there is no substantial distinction between those favored, which
may or may not need it at all, and the Judiciary, which definitely needs it. The problem is not
solved by violating the Constitution.
The equal protection clause does not require the universal application of the laws on all persons
or things without distinction (it is true that the postmaster withdraw the franking privileges from
other agencies of the government but still, the judiciary is different because its operation largely
relies on the mailing of court processes). This might in fact sometimes result in unequal
protection, as where, for example, a law prohibiting mature books to all persons, regardless of
age, would benefit the morals of the youth but violate the liberty of adults. What the clause
requires is equality among equals as determined according to a valid classification. By
classification is meant the grouping of persons or things similar to each other in certain
particulars and different from all others in these same particulars.
In lumping the Judiciary with the other offices from which the franking privilege has been
withdrawn, Sec 35 has placed the courts of justice in a category to which it does not belong. If it
recognizes the need of the President of the Philippines and the members of Congress for the
franking privilege, there is no reason why it should not recognize a similar and in fact greater
need on the part of the Judiciary for such privilege.

5) Plessy v Ferguson 163 US 537

Facts. A Louisiana statute required railroad companies to provide separate, but equal
accommodations for its Black and White passengers. An exception was made for nurses
attending to the children of the other race. Plaintiff, who was seven-eighths white, was
prosecuted under the statute after he refused to leave the section of a train reserved for whites.
The alleged purpose of the statute was to preserve public peace and good order and to promote
the comfort of the people.

Issue. Was the statute requiring separate, but equal accommodations on railroad transportation
consistent with the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment of the Constitution?
Held. Yes. The State Supreme Court is affirmed. Justice Henry Brown (J. Brown) stated that
although the Fourteenth Amendment of the Constitution was designed to enforce the equality
between the races, it was not intended to abolish distinctions based on color, or to enforce a
commingling of the races in a way unsatisfactory to either. Laws requiring the separation of the
races do not imply the inferiority of either. If the law “stamps the colored race with a badge of
inferiority,” it is because the colored race chooses to put that construction upon it. Therefore, the
statute constitutes a valid exercise of the States’ police powers.
The Fourteenth Amendment of the Constitution does, however, require that the exercise of a
State’s police powers be reasonable. Laws enacted in good faith, for the promotion of the public
good and not for the annoyance or oppression of another race are reasonable. As such, the statute
was reasonable.

6) Villegas v Hiu Chiong 86 SCRA 270

Facts: The Municipal Board of Manila enacted Ordinance 6537 requiring aliens (except those
employed in the diplomatic and consular missions of foreign countries, in technical assistance
programs of the government and another country, and members of religious orders or
congregations) to procure the requisite mayor’s permit so as to be employed or engage in trade in
the City of Manila. The permit fee is P50, and the penalty for the violation of the ordinance is 3
to 6 months imprisonment or a fine of P100 to P200, or both.

Issue: Whether the ordinance imposes a regulatory fee or a tax.

Held: The ordinance’s purpose is clearly to raise money under the guise of regulation by exacting
P50 from aliens who have been cleared for employment. The amount is unreasonable and
excessive because it fails to consider difference in situation among aliens required to pay it, i.e.
being casual, permanent, part-time, rank-and-file or executive.
[ The Ordinance was declared invalid as it is arbitrary, oppressive and unreasonable, being
applied only to aliens who are thus deprived of their rights to life, liberty and property and
therefore violates the due process and equal protection clauses of the Constitution. Further, the
ordinance does not lay down any criterion or standard to guide the Mayor in the exercise of his
discretion, thus conferring upon the mayor arbitrary and unrestricted powers. ]
7) Yick Wo v Hopkins 118 US 356

Facts: The city of San Francisco passed an ordinance that required Laundromats located in
wooden buildings to have a permit. The ordinance established a board which would decide who
would and would not get the permit. The facts suggest that not a single Chinese applicant was
ever granted a permit, despite the fact that Chinese operated Laundromats constituted nearly 90%
of the city’s laundry business at the time. The Plaintiffs were held in violation of the ordinance
and issued a fine. Plaintiffs then sued under the 14th amendment, citing a violation of equal

Issues: Does an ordinance that gives absolute discretion to a permit board that discriminates on
the basis of race in their eventual decision making violate the equal protection clause of the
United States?

Held: Yes, the ordinance is invalidated and the appeal ruling is overturned. The court noted
that the ordinance did not have any discrimination detectable within its text. However, its
enforcement did violate the equal protection clause because its execution was racially unequal.
The court held that the new rule should be that the Supreme Court may shoot down state or local
laws that are neutral in their text, but discriminatory in their execution.
The court wrote that the enforcement of the law was “a practical denial by the state of that equal
protection of the law,” and, as such, was a violation of the constitution. Moreover, the court also
noted that equal protection is afforded to non-citizens within US borders, as many of the Chinese
Laundromat operators were non-citizens.