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CONSTITUTIONAL

LAW I

CODAL
NOTES ON FR. BERNAS’ PRIMER ON THE 1987 CONSTITUTION
NOTES ON PROF. NACHURA’S POLITICAL LAW REVIEWER
JURISPRUDENCE BASED ON DEAN CANDELARIA’S SYLLABUS
JURISPRUDENCE BASED ON PROF. JACK JIMENEZ’S SYLLABUS

IT BEGINS WITH FAITH & CONVICTION, PERSEVERES WITH HARD WORK & DISCIPLINE, AND
ENDS WITH AN IMPASSIONED TRIUMPH WITHIN, WHEN WE REALIZE THAT WE CAN DO ANYTHING
[SEE EPH. 3:20]

#EMBRACETHEGRIND
TABLE OF CONTENTS
GENERAL PRINCIPLES OF CONSTITUTIONAL LAW 5
THE PREAMBLE 10
ARTICLE 1 — THE NATIONAL TERRITORY 11
ARTICLE 2 — DECLARATION OF PRINCIPLES AND STATE POLICIES 14
A. PRINCIPLES 14
B. STATE POLICIES 15

ARTICLE 6 — THE LEGISLATIVE DEPARTMENT 20


OVERVIEW OF THE BRANCHES OF GOVERNMENT 20
WHERE LEGISLATIVE POWER IS VESTED 21
COMPOSITION OF SENATE AND ELECTION OF ITS MEMBERS 25
QUALIFICATIONS OF THE MEMBERS OF SENATE 25
TERMS OF OFFICE OF MEMBERS OF SENATE 26
COMPOSITION OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES AND ELECTION OF ITS MEMBERS 27
THE PARTY-LIST SYSTEM 28
QUALIFICATIONS OF MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES 35
TERM OF MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES 36
DAY OF ELECTION OF MEMBERS OF CONGRESS 37
VACANCIES IN CONGRESS 37
COMPENSATION OF MEMBERS OF CONGRESS 37
PARLIAMENTARY PRIVILEGE 38
CONGRESSIONAL DISCLOSURE OF FINANCIAL AND BUSINESS INTERESTS 39
DISQUALIFICATIONS AND PROHIBITIONS ON MEMBERS OF CONGRESS 39
REGULAR AND SPECIAL SESSIONS OF CONGRESS 40
RULES FOR THE CONDUCT OF BUSINESS IN CONGRESS 41
CONGRESSIONAL ELECTORAL TRIBUNALS 43
COMMISSION ON APPOINTMENTS 46
RECORDS AND BOOKS OF ACCOUNTS OF CONGRESS 47
POWER TO CONDUCT LEGISLATIVE INQUIRY OR HEARINGS 47
POWER OF CONGRESSIONAL OVERSIGHT 50
POWER TO DECLARE A STATE OF WAR AND DELEGATION OF EMERGENCY POWERS 55
ORIGINATION OF CERTAIN LEGISLATIVE BILLS 56
PROCEDURAL REQUIREMENTS ON THE PASSING OF BILLS 57
HOW A BILL BECOMES LAW; PRESIDENTIAL VETO AND POWER OF CONGRESSIONAL OVERRIDE 58
POWER OF APPROPRIATION; EXPENDITURE OF PUBLIC FUNDS 60
POWER OF TAXATION; TAX LIMITATIONS AND EXEMPTIONS 72
OTHER LIMITATIONS ON LEGISLATIVE POWERS 76
OTHER POWERS OF CONGRESS 76
PEOPLE’S INITIATIVE AND REFERENDUM 77

ARTICLE 7 — EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT 81


EXECUTIVE POWER; THE PRESIDENCY AND VICE-PRESIDENCY 81
QUALIFICATIONS OF THE PRESIDENT AND VICE-PRESIDENT 82
ELECTION AND TERM OF THE PRESIDENT AND VICE-PRESIDENT 82
PRESIDENTIAL ELECTORAL TRIBUNAL 84
COMPENSATION OF THE PRESIDENT AND VICE-PRESIDENT 85
PRESIDENTIAL SUCCESSION 85
INCAPACITY OF THE PRESIDENT 87
SERIOUS ILLNESS OF THE PRESIDENT 88
DISQUALIFICATIONS AND PROHIBITIONS 88
PRESIDENTIAL PRIVILEGES 90
POWER OF APPOINTMENT; APPOINTMENTS BAN 96
POWER OF EXECUTIVE CONTROL; FAITHFUL EXECUTION CLAUSE 103

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POWER AS COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF OF THE ARMED FORCES OF THE PHILIPPINES 106
POWER OF EXECUTIVE CLEMENCY 111
POWER TO ENTER INTO FOREIGN RELATIONS 116
BUDGETARY POWER; OBLIGATION TO PREPARE THE NATIONAL BUDGET 119
INFORMATION POWER; OBLIGATION TO ADDRESS THE CONGRESS 119
OTHER POWERS OF THE PRESIDENT 119

ARTICLE 8 — JUDICIAL DEPARTMENT 121


JUDICIAL POWER AND THE POWER OF JUDICIAL REVIEW 121
POWERS OF THE SUPREME COURT 135
JURISDICTION OF COURTS 140
FISCAL AUTONOMY 140
COMPOSITION OF THE SUPREME COURT 141
QUALIFICATIONS OF MEMBERS OF THE JUDICIARY 141
JUDICIAL AND BAR COUNCIL 142
VACANCIES AND APPOINTMENT OF MEMBERS OF THE JUDICIARY 144
DISQUALIFICATIONS AND PROHIBITIONS ON MEMBERS OF THE JUDICIARY 145
RULES IN THE DISPOSITION OF CASES BY THE SUPREME COURT 146
DISCLOSURE OF OPERATIONS AND ACTIVITIES 149

ARTICLE 9 — CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSIONS 150


ARTICLE 9(A) — COMMON PROVISIONS 150
THE CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSIONS 150
DISQUALIFICATIONS AND PROHIBITIONS ON MEMBERS OF THE CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSIONS 150
FISCAL AUTONOMY OF THE CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSIONS 151
APPOINTMENT OF OFFICIALS BY THE CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSIONS 151
RULE-MAKING POWER OF THE CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSIONS 152
RULES IN THE DISPOSITION OF CASES BY THE CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSIONS 152

ARTICLE 9(B) — THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION (CSC) 153


COMPOSITION OF THE CSC AND THE QUALIFICATIONS AND APPOINTMENT OF ITS MEMBERS 154
POWERS AND FUNCTIONS OF THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION 154
THE CIVIL SERVICE SYSTEM 156
DISQUALIFICATIONS AND PROHIBITIONS ON ELECTIVE AND APPOINTIVE OFFICIALS IN GENERAL 166

ARTICLE 9(C) — THE COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS (COMELEC) 170


COMPOSITION OF THE COMELEC AND THE QUALIFICATIONS AND APPOINTMENT OF ITS MEMBERS 171
POWERS AND FUNCTIONS OF THE COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS 172
RULES IN THE DISPOSITION OF CASES BY THE COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS 179
RULES PERTINENT TO THE ELECTORAL SYSTEM 179

ARTICLE 9(D) — THE COMMISSION ON AUDIT (COA) 180


COMPOSITION OF THE COA AND THE QUALIFICATIONS AND APPOINTMENT OF ITS MEMBERS 180
POWERS AND FUNCTIONS OF THE COMMISSION ON AUDIT 180

ARTICLE 10 — LOCAL GOVERNMENT 183


A. GENERAL PROVISIONS 183
LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNITS 183
LOCAL AUTONOMY OF THE TERRITORIAL AND POLITICAL SUBDIVISIONS 183
THE NEED FOR A LOCAL GOVERNMENT CODE 184
THE POWER OF GENERAL SUPERVISION 184
POWER OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNITS OF TAXATION 185
SHARE OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNITS IN THE NATIONAL TAXES 186
SHARE OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNITS IN THE PROCEEDS OF THE NATIONAL WEALTH 186
TERM OF OFFICE OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS 186
SECTORAL REPRESENTATION IN LOCAL LEGISLATIVE BODIES 187
CREATION, DIVISION, MERGER AND ABOLISHMENT OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNITS 188

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SPECIAL METROPOLITAN POLITICAL SUBDIVISIONS 188
CLASSES OF CITIES AS LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNITS 189
GROUPING OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNITS FOR THEIR COMMON BENEFIT 189
REGIONAL DEVELOPMENT COUNCILS 190

B. AUTONOMOUS REGIONS 190


POWER OF GENERAL SUPERVISION OF AUTONOMOUS REGIONS 190
POWERS AND FUNCTIONS OF THE AUTONOMOUS REGIONS 190

ARTICLE 11 — ACCOUNTABILITY OF PUBLIC OFFICERS 193


PUBLIC OFFICE AS A PUBLIC TRUST 193
GROUNDS FOR IMPEACHMENT 193
PROCEDURE FOR IMPEACHMENT 193
THE SANDIGANBAYAN 195
THE OFFICE OF THE OMBUDSMAN AND THE SPECIAL PROSECUTOR 195
IMPRESCRIPTIBILITY OF ACTIONS TO RECOVER ILL-GOTTEN WEALTH 199
PROHIBITIONS ON FINANCIAL ACCOMMODATIONS TO CERTAIN PUBLIC OFFICERS 199
DUTY OF PUBLIC OFFICERS TO DISCLOSE ASSETS, LIABILITIES AND NET WORTH 200
DUTY OF ALLEGIANCE; CHANGE OF CITIZENSHIP BY PUBLIC OFFICERS 200

ARTICLE 12 — NATIONAL ECONOMY AND PATRIMONY 201


STATEMENT OF GOALS OF THE NATIONAL ECONOMY 201
THE REGALIAN DOCTRINE; CLASSIFICATION OF LANDS 201
ANCESTRAL LANDS OF INDIGENOUS CULTURAL COMMUNITIES 207
THE USE OF PROPERTY HAVING A SOCIAL FUNCTION 207
OWNERSHIP OF PRIVATE LANDS 208
THE NATIONAL ECONOMIC AND DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY 211
FILIPINIZATION OF CERTAIN BUSINESSES OF NATIONAL INTEREST; PREFERENCE TO QUALIFIED FILIPINOS 211
FILIPINIZATION OF THE OPERATION OF PUBLIC UTILITIES 212
PREFERENCE FOR FILIPINO LABOR, DOMESTIC MATERIALS AND GOODS 214
TRADE POLICY 214
FILIPINIZATION OF PROFESSIONS 214
PROMOTION OF COOPERATIVES 214
CREATION OF CORPORATIONS 214
TEMPORARY TAKE-OVER OF PUBLIC UTILITIES 215
REGULATION OF MONOPOLIES 215
CENTRAL MONETARY AUTHORITY 216
INCURRING OF FOREIGN LOANS 216
CIRCUMVENTION OR VIOLATIONS OF ART. 12 216

ARTICLE 16 — GENERAL PROVISIONS 217


PHILIPPINE FLAG; NAME, ANTHEM, SEAL 217
STATE IMMUNITY FROM SUIT 217
THE ARMED FORCES OF THE PHILIPPINES; PHILIPPINE NATIONAL POLICE 221
CONSUMER PROTECTION 222
POLICY DEVELOPMENT ON MEDIA; PHILIPPINE OWNERSHIP OF MASS MEDIA 222
POLICY DEVELOPMENT ON INDIGENOUS CULTURAL COMMUNITIES 222

ARTICLE 17 — AMENDMENTS OR REVISIONS 223


ARTICLE 18 — TRANSITORY PROVISIONS 225

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POLITICAL LAW
‣ What is Political Law?
‣ It is that branch of public law which deals with the organization ,and operations of the governmental organs of the
State and defines the relations of the State with the inhabitants of its territory. (People v. Perfecto)
‣ What are the branches of Political Law?
1. Constitutional Law — The study of the maintenance of the proper balance between authority as represented by the
three inherent powers of the State and liberty as guaranteed by the Bill of Rights.
2. Administrative Law — That branch of public law which fixes the organization of government, determines the
competence of the administrative authorities who execute the law, and indicates to the individual remedies for the
violation of his rights.

3. Law on Municipal Corporations

4. Law of Public Officers

5. Election Laws

‣ What are the sources of Political Law?


1. 1987, 1973 and 1935 Constitutions

2. Other organic laws made to apply to the Philippines, e.g., Philippine Bill of 1902, Jones Law of 1916, and Tydings-
McDuffie Law of 1934

3. Statutes, executive orders and decrees, and judicial decisions

4. U.S. Constitution.

THE PHILIPPINE CONSTITUTION


‣ What is the Constitution?
‣ It is that body of rules and maxims in accordance with which the powers of sovereignty are habitually exercised. With
particular reference to the Constitution of the Philippines: That written instrument enacted by direct action of the
people by which the fundamental powers of the government are established, limited and defined, and by which those
powers are distributed among the several departments for their safe and useful exercise for the benefit of the body
politic.

‣ The purpose is to prescribe the permanent framework of a system of government, to assign to the several
departments their respective powers and duties, and to establish certain first principles on which the government is
founded

‣ What are the classes of Constitutions?


1. Written or unwritten — A written constitution is one whose precepts are embodied in one document or set of
documents; while an unwritten constitution consists of rules which have not been integrated into a single, concrete
form but are scattered in various sources, such as statutes of a fundamental character, judicial decisions,
commentaries of publicists, customs and traditions, and certain common law principles

2. Enacted (Conventional) or Evolved (Cumulative) — A conventional constitution is enacted, formally struck off at a
definite time and place following a conscious or deliberate effort taken by a constituent body or ruler; while a
cumulative constitution is the result of political evolution, not inaugurated at any specific time but changing by
accretion rather than by any systematic method.
3. Rigid or Flexible — A rigid Constitution is one that can be amended only by a formal and usually difficult process;
while a flexible Constitution is one that can be changed by ordinary legislation

‣ What are the essential parts of a good written Constitution?


‣ NACHURA —

1. Constitution of Liberty — The series of prescriptions setting forth the fundamental civil and political rights of the
citizens and imposing limitations on the powers of government as a means of securing the enjoyment of those
rights, e.g., Art. III.
2. Constitution of Government — The series of provisions outlining the organization of the government,
enumerating its powers, laying down certain rules relative to its administration, and defining the electorate, e.g.,
Arts. VI, VII, VIII and IX.

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3. Constitution of Sovereignty — The provisions pointing out the mode or procedure in accordance with which
formal changes in the fundamental law may be brought about, e.g., Art. XVII.

‣ What are the rules on interpretation and construction of the Constitution?


‣ SEE — Francisco v. House of Representatives, G.R. No. 160261, November 10, 2003 and Civil Liberties Union v.
Executive Secretary, 194 SCRA 317
1. First, verba legis — whenever possible, the words used in the Constitution must be given their ordinary meaning
except where technical terms are employed. As the Constitution is not primarily a lawyer’s document, it being
essential for the rule of law to obtain that it should ever be present in the people’s consciousness, its language as
much as possible should be understood in the sense they have a common use.
2. Second, where there is ambiguity, ratio leqis et anima — The words of the Constitution should be interpreted
in accordance with the intent of the framers. In construing a Constitution should bear in mind the object sought to
be accomplished and the evils sought to be prevented or remedied. A doubtful provision shall be examined in
light of the history of the times and the conditions and circumstances under which the Constitution was framed.

3. Third, ut maais valeat auam pereat — the Constitution has to be interpreted as a whole. Sections bearing on a
particular subject should be considered and interpreted together as to effectuate the whole purpose of the
Constitution and one section is not to be allowed to defeat another, if by any reasonable construction, the two can
be made to stand together.

‣ NACHURA — Other rules on constitutional construction —

1. If the plain meaning of the word is not found to be clear, resort to other aids is available — While it is
permissible to consult the debates and proceedings of the constitutional convention in order to arrive at the
reason and purpose of the resulting Constitution, resort thereto may be had only when other guides fail as said
proceedings are powerless to vary the terms of the Constitution when the meaning is clear. We think it safer to
construe the Constitution from what “appears upon its face”. The proper interpretation, therefore, depends more on
how it was understood by the people adopting it than in the framers’ understanding thereof.
2. In case of doubt, the provisions should be considered —
a. Self executing rather than not
b. Mandatory rather than directory
c. Prospective rather than retroactive.
‣ What are “self-executing provisions”?
‣ A provision which lays down a general principle 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 a 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. (Manila Prince Hotel
v. GSIS)

PHILIPPINE CONSTITUTIONAL HISTORY


1. THE MALOLOS CONSTITUTION
a. The Philippine Revolution of 1896.

b. Proclamation of Philippine independence, at Kawit, Cavite, on June 12, 1898.

c. Revolutionary Congress convened at Barasoain Church, Malolos, Bulacan, on September 15, 1898. Three drafts were
submitted, namely, the drafts of Pedro Paterno, Apolinario Mabini and Felipe Calderon.

d. The Calderon proposal was reported to the Congress on October 8, 1898, and the Congress approved the proposed
Constitution on November 29, 1898.

e. President Emilio Aguinaldo approved the same on December 23, 1898; Congress ratified it on January 20, 1899.

f. Aguinaldo promulgated the Constitution the following day, along with the establishment of the Philippine Republic on
January 21, 1899.

g. This was the first republican constitution in Asia, framed by a revolutionary convention which included 40 lawyers, 16
physicians, 5 pharmacists, 2 engineers and 1 priest. The Constitution recognized that sovereign power was vested in
the people, provided for a parliamentary government, acknowledged separation of powers, and contained a bill of
rights.

2. THE AMERICAN REGIME AND THE ORGANIC ACTS

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a. The Treaty of Paris of December 10, 1898. The treaty of peace entered into between the US and Spain upon the
cessation of the Spanish- American War. It provided, among others, for the cession of the Philippine Islands by Spain
to the US.

b. US President McKinley’s Instructions of April 7, 1900, to transform the military into a civil government as rapidly as
conditions would permit. On September 1, 1900, the authority to exercise that part of the military power of the US
President which is legislative in character was transferred from the military government to the Philippine Commission
(first, the Schurman Commission, then, the Taft Commission)

c. The Spooner Amendment to the Army Appropriation Bill of March 2, 1901 provided that all military, civil and judicial
powers necessary to govern the Philippine Islands shall be exercised in such manner x x x for the establishment of a
civil government and for maintaining and protecting the inhabitants in the free enjoyment of their liberty, property and
religion. On July 1, 1901, the Office of the Civil Governor was created, and the executive authority previously
exercised by the military governor was transferred to the Civil Governor.

d. The Philippine Bill of July 1, 1902 continued the existing civil government, with the co mmitmentfrom the US
Congress to convene and organize in the Philippines a legislative body of their own representatives. On October
16,1907, the Philippine Assembly was convened to sit as the Lower House in a bicameral legislature, with the
Philippine Commission as the Upper House.

e. The Jones Law (Philippine Autonomy Act) of August 29, 1916. It superseded the Spooner Amendment and the
Philippine Bill of 1902. It was the principal organic act of the Philippines until November 15,1935, when the Philippine
Commonwealth was inaugurated (under the 1935 Constitution). It contained a preamble, a bill of rights, provisions
defining the organization and powers of the departments of government, provisions defining the electorate, and
miscellaneous provisions on finance, franchises and salaries of important officials. Executive power was vested in the
Governor General, legislative power in a bicameral legislature composed of the Senate and House of
Representatives, and judicial power in the Supreme Court, the Courts of First Instance and inferior courts.

f. The Tydings-McDuffie Act (Philippine Independence Act) of March 24, 1934 authorized the drafting of a Constitution
for the Philippines, the establishment of a Commonwelath Government and, after ten years, independence.

3. THE 1935 CONSTITUTION


a. Pursuant to the authority granted under the Tydings-McDuffie Law, the Philippine Legislature passed Act No. 4125
(May 26,1934) calling for the election of delegates to the Constitutional Convention.

b. Election of delegates: July 10, 1934; Constitutional Convention inaugural: July 30,1934.

c. Draft Constitution approved by the Constitutional Convention on February 8, 1935; brought to Washington on March
18, 1935, and on March 23, 1935, US President Franklin Delano Roosevelt certified that the draft constitution
conformed substantially with the Tydings-McDuffie Law.

d. The Constitution was ratified in a plebiscite held on May 14, 1935.

e. The Philippine Commonwealth established under the Constitution was inaugurated on November 15, 1935; full
independence was attained with the inauguration of the (Third) Philippine Republic on July 4, 1946. -

f. The Constitution was amended in 1939: Ordinance appended to the Constitution, in accordance with the Tydings-
Kocialkowski Act of August 7, 1939 [Resolution of Congress: September 15, 1939; Plebiscite: October 24, 1939]

g. It was amended again in 1940: Changed President’s and Vice President’s term from six to four years, but no person
shall serve as President for more than 8 years; changed the unicameral to a bicameral legislature; established an
independent Commission on Elections (Resolution: April 11, 1940; Plebiscite: June 18, 1940)

h. Another amendment was adopted in 1947: Parity Amendment, effective July 4, 1949, granting to Americans, for a
period of twenty-five years, the same privileges as Filipinos in the utilization and exploitation of natural resources in
the Philippines (Resolution: September 18, 1946; Plebiscite: March 11, 1947))

4. THE JAPANESE (BELLIGERENT) OCCUPATION


a. With the occupation of Manila, the Commander in Chief of the Japanese Forces proclaimed, on January 2, 1942, the
military administration over the territory occupied by the army, and ordered that “all the laws now in force in the
Commonwealth, as well as executive and judicial institutions shall continue to be effective for the time being as in the
past”, and “all public officials shall remain in their present posts and carry on faithfully their duties as before”.
b. Order No. 1 of the Japanese Commander in Chief, on January 23, 1942, organized the Philippine Executive
Commission.

c. Executive Orders Nos. 1 and 4, dated January 30 and February 6, 1942, respectively, continued the Supreme Court,
the Court of Appeals, the Courts of First Instance and Justices of the Peace Courts, with the same jurisdiction, in
conformity with later instructions given by the Commander in Chief of the Japanese Imperial Army in Order No. 3,
dated February 20, 1942.

d. October 14, 1943, the (Second) Philippine Republic was inaugurated, with Jose P. Laurel as President.

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5. THE 1973 CONSTITUTION
a. Resolution of Both Houses (RBH) No. 1, March 16, 1967, increasing the membership of the House of Representatives
from 120 to 180

b. RBH No. 2, March 16,1967, calling for a Constitutional Convention to revise the 1935 Constitution

c. RBH No. 3, March 16, 1967, allowing members of Congress to sit as delegates in the Constitutional Convention
without forfeiting their seats in Congress

d. RBH 1 and RBH 3 were submitted to the people in a plebiscite simultaneously with local elections in November 1967,
but both were rejected by the people.

e. RBH No. 4, June 17, 1969, amending RBH No. 2, and authorizing that specific apportionment of delegates to the
Constitutional Convention and other details relating to the election of delegates be embodied in an implementing
legislation

f. Republic Act No. 6132: Constitutional Convention Act of 1970.

g. See Imbong v. Comelec, where the constitutionality of the RA 6132 was challenged because it had to do with the
calling of a Constitutional Convention but was not passed by % of all the members of the Senate and the House of
Representatives, voting separately. The Supreme Court upheld the validity of the law, declaring that after Congress
had exercised its constituent power by adopting RBH 2 and RBH 4, with the requisite % vote as required by the 1935
Constitution, it may, by simply exercising legislative power, pass a law providing for the details for the implementation
of the resolutions passed in the exercise of its constituent power.

h. Election of delegates: November 10, 1970; Constitutional Convention was inaugurated on June 1, 1971.

i. Attempt of the Constitutional Convention to submit for ratification one resolution (reducing the voting age from 21 to
18) in a plebiscite to coincide with the 1971 local elections was declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court in
Tolentino v. Comelec. The Court held that when a Constitutional Convention is called for the purpose of revising the
Constitution, it may not submit for ratification “piecemeal amendments”because the 1935 Constitution speaks of
submission of the proposed amendments in “an election” (in the singular), and also because to allow the submission
would deprive the people of a “proper frame of reference”.
j. Presidential Proclamation No. 1081, on September 21, 1972: Declaration of martial law by President Ferdinand E.
Marcos.

k. Constitutional Convention approved the draft Constitution on November 29, 1972 .

l. On November 30,1972, President Marcos issued a decree setting the plebiscite for the ratification of the new
Constitution on January 15, 1973; on December 17, 1972, issued an order suspending the effects of Presidential
Proclamation 1081 in order to allow free and open debate on the proposed Constitution.

m. Planas v. Comelec, and companion cases (collectively known as the Plebiscite Cases) sought to prohibit the holding
of the plebiscite. The cases were eventually dismissed for being moot and academic when President Marcos issued
Presidential Proclamation 1102, declaring that the Constitution had been ratified and has come into force and effect.

n. On December 23, 1972, President Marcos announced the postponement of the plebiscite, but it was only on January
7, 1973, that General Order No. 20 was issued, directing that the plebiscite scheduled on January 15,1973, be
postponed until further notice, and withdrawing the order of December 17, 1972, suspending the effects of Pres.
Proclamation 1081 which allowed free and open debate on the proposed Constitution.

o. On December 31, 1972, Marcos issued Presidential Decree No. 86, organizing the Citizens Assemblies to be
consulted on certain public issues; and on January 5, 1973, issued Presidential Decree No. 86-A, calling the Citizens
Assemblies to meet on January 10-15, 1973, to vote on certain questions, among them: “Do you approve of the new
Constitution?” and “Do you still want a plebiscite to be called to ratify the new Constitution?”
p. On January 17, 1973, President Marcos issued Presidential Proclamation No. 1102, declaring that the new
Constitution had been ratified by the Citizens Assemblies, and “has thereby come into force and effect”
q. The validity of the ratification of the 1973 Constitution was challenged in Javellana v. Executive Secretary, and
companion cases (collectively known as the Ratification Cases). The basic issues and the votes of the SC justices
were: (1) Whether the validity of Proclamation 1102 is a political or a justiciable question - Six justices said it is
justiciable, three said it is political, and one justice qualified his vote. (2) Whether the new Constitution was validly
ratified (with substantial if not strict compliance) conformably with the 1935 Constitution - Six justices said no, three
said there was substantial compliance, and one qualified his vote. (3) Whether the people had acquiesced in the new
Constitution (with or without valid ratification) - Four justices said the people had already accepted the new
Constitution, two said that there can be no free expression by the people qualified to vote of their acceptance or
repudiation of the proposed Constitution under martial law, one said he is not prepared to state that a new
Constitution once accepted by the people must be accorded recognition independently of valid ratification, and three
expressed their lack of knowledge or competence to rule on the question because under a regime of martial law with
the free expression of opinions restricted, they have no means of knowing, to the point of judicial certainty, whether
the people have accepted the Constitution. (4) Whether the petitioners are entitled to relief - Six justices voted to

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dismiss the petitions, while four were for giving due course to the petitions. (5) Whether the new Constitution is
already in force - Four said yes by virtue of the people’s acceptance of the same, four said they could not with judicial
certainty whether or not the people had accepted the Constitution, and two declared that the new Constitution is not
in force, “with the result that there are not enough votes to declare tha the new Constitution is not in force”. The SC
decision concluded: “Accordingly, by virtue of the majority of six votes x x x. with four dissenting votes x x x all of the
aforementioned cases are hereby dismissed. This being the vote of the majority, there is no further judicial obstacle to
the new Constitution being considered in force and effect. ”
r. The 1973 Constitution was amended in 1976: Package often (10) amendments, proposed by Marcos on September 2,
1976, without specifying the particular provisions being changed. This package contained the infamous Amendment
No. 6. The amendments were ratified in a plebiscite held on October 16, 1976.
s. In Sanidad v. Comelec, where the authority of President Marcos to propose amendments to the Constitution was
challenged, the high tribunal said: “If the President has been legitimately discharging the legislative powers of the
interim (National) Assembly (which was never convened), there is no reason why he cannot validly discharge the
functions of the Assembly to propose amendments to the Constitution, which is but adjunct, though peculiar, to its
gross legislative power x x x (W)ith the interim Natiional Assembly not convened and only the President'and the
Supreme Court in operation, the urge of absolute necessity renders it imperative upon the President to act as agent
for and in behalf of the people to propose amendments to the Constitution.”
t. The Constitution was amended again on January 30, 1980: Restored original retirement age of judges to 70 years of
age
u. Another amendment was adopted on April 7, 1981: Restored the presidential system, while retaining certain features
of the parliamentary system; granted natural-born Filipinos who had been naturalized in a foreign country the right to
own a limited area of residential land in the Philippines
v. Still another amendment was made on January 27,1984: Provided for new rules on presidential succession, replaced
the Executive Committee with a revived Office of the Vice President, and changed the composition of the Batasan
Pambansa
w. Snap presidential election of 1986.
x. February 22-25,1986: EDSA People’s Revolution. The Cory Aquino government was not only a de facto but a de jure
government. (Lawyers League for a Better Philippines v. Corazon Aquino 1986)

6. THE 1987 CONSTITUTION


a. Proclamation No. 1, February 25, 1986, announcing that she (Corazon Aquino) and Vice President Laurel were
assuming power.

b. Executive Order No. 1 (February 28, 1986)

c. Proclamation No. 3, March 25,1986, announced the promulgation of the Provisional [Freedom] Constitution, pending
the drafting and ratification of a new Constitution. It adopted certain provisions of the 1973 Constitution, contained
additional articles on the executive department, on government reorganization, and on existing laws. It also provided
for the calling of a Constitutional Commission to be composed of 30-50 members, to draft a new Constitution.
i. As stated in Proclamation No. 3, the EDSA revolution was “done in defiance of the 1973 Constitution”. The
resulting government was indisputably a revolutionary government bound by no constitution or legal limitations
except treaty obligations that the revolutionary government, as the de jure government in the Philippines,
assumed under international law (Republic v. Sandiganbayan)
ii. During the interregnum, after the actual take-over of power by the revolutionary government (on February 25,
1986) up to March 24, 1986 (immediately before the adoption of the Provisional Constitution), the directives
and orders of the revolutionary government were the supreme law because no constitution limited the extent
and scope of such directives and orders. With the abrogation of the 1973 Constitution by the successful
revolution, there was no municipal law higher than the directives and orders of the revolutionary government.
Thus, during this interregnum, a person could not invoke an exclusionary right under a Bill of Rights because
there was neither a Constitution nor a Bill of Rights. (Republic v. Sandiganbayan)
d. Adoption of the Constitution —

i. Proclamation No. 9, creating the Constitutional Commission of 50 members.

ii. Approval of draft Constitution by the Constitutional Commission on October 15, 1986.

iii. Plebiscite held on February 2, 1987.

iv. Proclamation No. 58, proclaiming the ratification of the Constitution.

e. Effectivity of the 1987 Constitution: February 2, 1987, the date of the plebiscite when the people ratified the
Constitution


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THE PREAMBLE
THE PREAMBLE

We, the sovereign Filipino people, imploring the aid of Almighty God, in order to build a just and humane society, and
establish a Government that shall embody our ideals and aspirations, promote the common good, conserve and develop
our patrimony, and secure to ourselves and our posterity, the blessings of independence and democracy under the rule of
law and a regime of truth, justice, freedom, love, equality, and peace, do ordain and promulgate this Constitution.

‣ What is the function of the Preamble in the Constitution?


‣ BERNAS — The Preamble is not a source of rights or of obligations. Because, however, it sets down the origin, scope,
and purpose of the Constitution, it is useful as an aid in ascertaining the meaning of ambiguous provisions in the body
of the Constitution. It is thus a source of light.

‣ NACHURA — The preamble does not confer rights nor impose duties. It indicates authorship of the Constitution;
enumerates the primary aims and aspirations of the framers; and serves as an aid in the construction of the
Constitution.

‣ What is the origin, scope and purpose of the Constitution as set out in the Preamble?
‣ BERNAS — Its origin, or authorship, is the will of the "sovereign Filipino people." Its scope and purpose is "to build a
just and humane society and to establish a government that shall embody our ideals and aspirations, promote the
common good, conserve and develop our patrimony, and secure to ourselves and our posterity the blessings of
independence and democracy under the rule of law and a regime of truth, justice, freedom, love, equality and peace.”

‣ Why does the Constitution now say "Almighty God" instead of "Divine Providence," as the 1935 and 1973
Constitutions did?
‣ BERNAS — The phrase "Almighty God" is more personal and more consonant with personalist Filipino religiosity.

‣ What is the meaning of "common good" and how does it differ from the "general welfare" of the 1935 and 1973
Constitutions?
‣ BERNAS — The phrase "common good" projects the idea of a social order that enables every citizen to attain his or
her fullest development economically, politically, culturally, and spiritually. The phrase "general welfare" was avoided
because it could be interpreted as "the greatest good for the greatest number" even if what the greater number wants
does violence to human dignity, as for instance when the greater majority might want the extermination of those who
are considered inferior.

‣ What is the significance of the specification of "equality?"


‣ BERNAS — It emphasizes that a major problem in Philippine society is the prevalence of gross economic and political
inequalities.

‣ What is the import of "the rule of law?"


‣ BERNAS — This expresses the concept that government officials have only the authority given them by law and
defined by law, and that such authority continues only with the consent of the people. The statement is: "Ours is a rule
of law and not of men."


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ARTICLE 1 — THE NATIONAL TERRITORY
ARTICLE 1 — THE NATIONAL TERRITORY

The national territory comprises the Philippine archipelago, with all the islands and waters embraced therein, and all other
territories over which the Philippines has sovereignty or jurisdiction, consisting of its terrestrial, fluvial and aerial domains,
including its territorial sea, the seabed, the subsoil, the insular shelves, and other submarine areas. The waters around,
between, and connecting the islands of the archipelago, regardless of their breadth and dimensions, form part of the
internal waters of the Philippines.

BERNAS — It should be remembered that a constitution is municipal law. As such, it binds only the nation promulgating it.
Hence, a definition of national territory in the constitution will bind internationally only if it is supported by proof that can stand
in international law.

THE PHILIPPINES AS A STATE


‣ What is a “State”?
‣ It is community of persons, more or less numerous, permanently occupying a definite portion of territory, independent
of external control, and possessing a government to which a great body of inhabitants render habitual obedience

‣ NOTE — “State” is a legal or juristic concept, while “nation” is an ethnic or racial concept. “Government” is merely an
instrumentality of the State through which the will of the State is implemented and realized.

‣ What are the elements of a state?


1. People

2. Territory

3. Government

4. Sovereignty

‣ What is the “archipelagic principle”?


‣ The waters around, between and connecting the islands of the archipelago, regardless of their breadth and
dimensions, form part of the internal waters of the Philippines. This articulates the archipelagic doctrine of national
territory, based on the principle that an archipelago, which consists of a number of islands separated by bodies of
water, should be treated as one integral unit.

‣ What is the other element of the archipelagic principle?


‣ The Straight baseline method — Imaginary straight lines are drawn joining the outermost points of outermost islands
of the archipelago, enclosing an area the ratio of which should not be more than 9:1 (water to land); provided that the
drawing of baselines shall not depart, to any appreciable extent, from the general configuration of the archipelago.
The waters within the baselines shall be considered internal waters; while the breadth of the territorial sea shall then
be measured from the baselines.

‣ NOTE — Baselines are lines drawn along the low water mark of an island or group of islands which mark the end of
the internal waters and the beginning of the territorial sea. Each country must draw its own baselines according to the
provisions of the Law of the Sea. (See R.A. 9522. This law provides for one baseline around the archipelago and
separate baselines for the "regime of islands" outside the archipelago)

‣ Does the 1982 Convention on the Law of the Sea accept the entirely of the Philippine position on the archipelagic
principle.
‣ BERNAS — Not exactly. The vast areas of water between islands which the Philippines considers internal waters (and
therefore not subject to the right of innocent passage) the 1982 Convention calls "archipelagic waters" subject to the
right of innocent passage through passages designated by the archipelago concerned. The Philippines has not
recognized this distinction because it is contrary to what Article I says about these waters being internal. For this
reason, the Philippines ratified the 1982 Convention on the Law of the Sea with reservations. However, in practical
terms the Philippines has designated sea lanes for foreign vessels.

‣ What is the extent of the Philippine claim to its aerial domain, territorial sea, the seabed, the subsoil, the insular
shelves, and other submarine areas?
‣ BERNAS — The Philippines lays claim to them to the extent recognized by international law. The definition of these
areas and right of the Philippines over these areas are provided for in customary and conventional international law,
principally the 1982 Convention on the Law of the Sea and the Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation of
1944.

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‣ What is the special claim made by the Philippines with respect to the "waters around, between and connecting
the islands of the archipelago?"
‣ BERNAS — The Philippines claims them as part of its "internal waters" irrespective of their breadth and dimension.
This is one of the elements of the archipelagic principle which is now recognized by the 1982 Convention on the Law
of the Sea

ELEMENTS OF A STATE (EXPOUNDED)


1. PEOPLE
‣ As requisite for Statehood — Adequate number for self-sufficiency and defense; of both sexes for perpetuity.

‣ "People" simply means a community of persons sufficient number and capable of maintaining the continued existence
of the community and held together by a common bond of law. It is of no legal consequence if they possess diverse
racial, cultural, or economic interests.

2. TERRITORY
‣ See Art. 1 of the Constitution, the national territory comprises —

a. The Philippine archipelago — The Philippine archipelago is that body of water studded ,with islands which is
delineated in the Treaty of Paris of December 10,1898, as modified by the Treaty of Washington of November
7,1900 and the Treaty with Great Britain of January 2,1930. These are the same treaties that delineated Philippine
territory in Article I of the 1935 Constitution.
b. All other territories over which the Philippines has sovereignty or jurisdiction — This includes any territory
which presently belongs or might in the future belong to the Philippines through any of the internationally
accepted modes of acquiring territory.
i. Batanes (1935 Constitution)

ii. Those contemplated in the 1973 Constitution belonging to the Philippines by historic right or legal title (such
as — Sabah, the Marianas, Freedomland)

iii. Kalayaan group of islands (PD 1596, June 11, 1978)

‣ Components of these territories— Terrestrial, Fluvial, Maritime and Aerial domains, including the territorial sea, the
seabed, the subsoil, the insular shelves, and other submarine areas. The waters around, between, and connecting the
islands of the archipelago, regardless of their breadth and dimensions which form part of the internal waters of the
Philippines

3. GOVERNMENT
‣ The agency or instrumentality through which the will of the State is formulated, expressed and realized.

‣ Functions of government —

a. Constituent — which are mandatory for the Government to perform because they constitute the very bonds of
society, such as the maintenance of peace and order, regulation of property and property rights, the
administration of justice, etc

b. Ministrant — those intended to promote the welfare, progress and prosperity of the people, and which are merely
optional for Government to perform.

‣ BERNAS — The principles for determining whether or not a government shall exercise certain of these optional
functions are —

i. That a government should do for the public welfare those things which private capital would not naturally
undertake; and

ii. That a government should do those things which by its very nature it is better equipped to administer for
the public welfare than is any private individual or group of individuals.

‣ BERNAS — The conceptual definitions of constituent and ministrant function are still acceptable. However, the
growing complexities of modern society can necessitate a realignment. (ACCFA v. CUGCO,1969) Among more
recent decisions, housing has been found to be a governmental function since housing is considered an essential
service. (PHHC v. Court of Industrial Relations 1987). But undertaking to supply water for a price, as does the
government corporation National Irrigation Authority, is considered a trade and not a governmental activity.
(Spouses Fontanilla v. Hon. Maliaman 1991)

‣ Classes of government —

a. De jure (government of law) — the legal, legitimate government of a state and is so recognized by other states.
It is is an organized government of a state which has the general support of the people.

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b. De facto (government of fact)— It is is a government which actually exercises power or control but without legal
title. It is in actual possession of authority and control of the state. This includes —

i. The government that gets possession and control of, or usurps by force or by the voice of the majority, the
rightful legal government and maintains itself against the will of the latter;

ii. That established as an independent government by the inhabitants of a country who rise in insurrection
against the parent state; and

iii. That which is established and maintained by military forces who invade and occupy a territory of the enemy in
the course of war, and which is denominated as a government of paramount force. (Co Kim Cham v. Valdez
Tan Keh 1945)
‣ NOTE — The government under Cory Aquino and the Freedom Constitution was a de jure government ,
because it was established by authority of the legitimate sovereign, the people. It was a revolutionary
government established in defiance of the 1973 Constitution. (In re Letter of Associate Justice Puno 1992) But
the resulting government was indisputably a revolutionary government bound by no constitution or legal
limitations except treaty obligations that the revolutionary government, as the de jure government in the
Philippines, assumed under international law. During the interregnum from February 25, 1986 to March 24,
1986 before the Freedom Constitution took effect by presidential proclamation, the Bill of Rights under the
1973 Constitution was not operative. However, the protection accorded to individuals under the Covenant on
Civil and Political Rights and the Universal Declaration remained in effect under international law during the
interregnum. (Republic v. Sandiganbayan 2003)

‣ Other classes of government —

a. Presidential vs. Parliamentary government — The principal distinction is that in a presidential government,
there is separation of executive and legislative powers (the first is lodged in the President, while the second is
vested in Congress); while in a parliamentary government, there is fusion of both executive and legislative
powers in Parliament, although the actual exercise of the executive powers is vested in a Prime Minister who
is chosen by, and accountable to, Parliament.

b. Unitary vs. Federal government — A unitary government is a single, centralized government, exercising
powers over both the internal and external affairs of the State; while a federal government consists of
autonomous state (local) government units merged into a single State, with the national government exercising
a limited degree of power over the domestic affairs but generally full direction of the external affairs of the
State.

4. SOVEREIGNTY
‣ The supreme and uncontrollable power inherent in a State by which that State is governed.

‣ Legal sovereignty — is the supreme power to affect legal interests either by legislative, executive or judicial action.
This is lodged in the people but is normally exercised by state agencies. Stated in terms of auto-limitation, sovereignty
"is the properly of a state-force due to which it has the exclusive capacity of legal self-determination and self-
restriction.

‣ Political sovereignty — is the sum total of all the influences in a state, legal and non-legal, which determine the course
of law.

‣ Effects of change in sovereignty — Political laws are abrogated (People v. Perfecto) but municipal laws remain in
force (Vilas v. City of Manila)
‣ Effects of belligerent occupation — No change in sovereignty. (Peralta v. Director of Prisons) But political laws, except
the law on treason, are suspended (Laurel v. Misa) and municipal laws remain in force unless repealed by the
belligerent occupant. At the end of the belligerent occupation, when the occupant is ousted from the territory, the
political laws which had been suspended during the occupation shall automatically become effective again, under the
doctrine of jus postliminium.
‣ Dominium refers to the capacity to own or acquire property, including lands held by the State in its proprietary
capacity; while Imperium is the authority possessed by the State embraced in the concept of sovereignty.


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ARTICLE 2 — DECLARATION OF PRINCIPLES AND STATE POLICIES
ARTICLE 2 — DECLARATION OF PRINCIPLES AND STATE POLICIES

‣ BERNAS — The "Declaration of Principles and State Policies" is a statement of the basic ideological principles and
policies that underlie the Constitution. As such, the provisions shed light on the meaning of the other provisions of the
Constitution and they are a guide for all departments of the government in the implementation of the Constitution.

A. PRINCIPLES

Section 1. The Philippines is a democratic and republican State. Sovereignty resides in the people and all government
authority emanates from them.

‣ A republican state is a state wherein all government authority emanates from the people and is exercised by
representatives chosen by the people.

‣ RATIONALE — To prevent concentration of authority in one person or group of persons that might lead to an
irreversible error or abuse in its exercise to the detriment of republican institutions. To secure action, to forestall
overaction, to prevent despotism and to obtain efficiency. (Pangasinan Transporation Co. v. Public Service
Commission)

‣ BERNAS — In the view of the new Constitution the Philippines is not only a representative or republican state but also
shares some aspects of direct democracy such as "initiative and referendum" in Article VI, Section 32, and Article XVII,
Section 2. The word "democratic" is also a monument to the February Revolution which re-won freedom through direct
action of the people.

‣ NOTE — Constitutional authoritarianism," as understood and practiced in the Marcos regime under the 1973
Constitution, was the assumption of extraordinary powers by the President, including legislative and judicial and even
constituent powers. Constitutional authoritarianism is compatible with a republican state if the Constitution upon which
the Executive bases his assumption of power is a legitimate expression of the people's will and if the Executive who
assumes power received his office through a valid election by the people.

‣ What are the manifestations of republicanism?


‣ NACHURA —

1. Ours is a government of laws and not of men

2. Rule of the majority. (Plurality in elections)

3. Accountability of public officials.

4. Bill of Rights.

5. Legislature cannot pass irrepealable laws.

6. Separation of powers.

Section 2. The Philippines renounces war as an instrument of national policy, adopts the generally accepted principles of
international law as part of the law of the land and adheres to the policy of peace, equality, justice, freedom, cooperation,
and amity with all nations.

‣ What kind of war is renounced by the Philippines?


‣ Aggressive, not defensive, war.

‣ What are the generally accepted principles of international law?


‣ Among the principles of international law acknowledged by the Court as part of the law of the land are —

1. The right of an alien to be released on bail while awaiting deportation when his failure to leave the country is due
to the fact that no country will accept him. (Mejoffv. Director of Prisons 1951)

2. The right of a country to establish military commissions to try war criminals (Kuroda v. Jalandoni 1949)

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3. Some generally accepted principles have been incorporated in treaties such as the Vienna Convention on Road
Signs and Signals. (Agustin v. Edu 1979)

4. The duty to protect the premises of embassies and legations (J.B.L. Reyes v. Bagatsing 1983)
‣ Does the affirmation of amity with all nations mean automatic diplomatic recognition of all nations?

‣ BERNAS — NO. Amity with all nations is an ideal to be aimed at. Diplomatic recognition, however, remains a matter of
executive discretion.

Section 3. Civilian authority is, at all times, supreme over the military. The Armed Forces of the Philippines is the protector
of the people and the State. Its goal is to secure the sovereignty of the State and the integrity of the national territory.

‣ How is the principle of civilian supremacy institutionalized?


‣ BERNAS — The principle is institutionalized by the provision which makes the President, a civilian and precisely as
civilian, commander- in-chief of the armed forces. But this does not mean that civilian officials are superior to military
officials. Civilian officials are superior to military officials only when a law makes them so.

‣ What is the reason for the existence of the armed forces?


‣ They exist in order to secure the sovereignty of the State, and to preserve the integrity of the national territory. In
extraordinary circumstances they may also be called upon to protect the people when ordinary law and order forces
need assistance.

Section 4. The prime duty of the Government is to serve and protect the people. The Government may call upon the
people to defend the State and, in the fulfillment thereof, all citizens may be required, under conditions provided by law,
to render personal, military or civil service.

Section 5. The maintenance of peace and order, the protection of life, liberty, and property, and promotion of the general
welfare are essential for the enjoyment by all the people of the blessings of democracy.

‣ BERNAS — This is intended to place the emphasis on service to and protection of the people.The phrase "under
conditions provided by law" in the second sentence emphasizes the primacy of serving the interest of the people and
protecting their rights even when there is need to defend the State.

Section 6. The separation of Church and State shall be inviolable.

‣ SEE — Freedom of Religion in Art. 3, Sec. 5

B. STATE POLICIES

Section 7. The State shall pursue an independent foreign policy. In its relations with other states, the paramount
consideration shall be national sovereignty, territorial integrity, national interest, and the right to self-determination.

‣ What is the general characteristic of the provisions protecting rights in Article II?
‣ BERNAS — In general they are not self-executing provisions. They need implementing acts of Congress. They require
implementing legislation.

‣ In the conduct of the nation's foreign relations, what principles must guide the government?
‣ BERNAS — The government must maintain an independent foreign policy and give paramount consideration to
national sovereignty, territorial integrity, national interest, and self-determination.

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Section 8. The Philippines, consistent with the national interest, adopts and pursues a policy of freedom from nuclear
weapons in its territory.

‣ BERNAS — The Constitution prescribes a policy of freedom from nuclear weapons. The policy includes the prohibition
not only of the possession, control, and manufacture of nuclear weapons but also nuclear arms tests. Exception to this
policy may be made by the political departments; but it must be justified by the demands of the national interest,
("consistent with the national interest.") But the policy does not prohibit the peaceful uses of nuclear energy.

‣ What is the implication of this, policy for the presence of American troops or for any American military base that
might be established in the Philippines
‣ BERNAS — Any new agreement on bases or the presence of troops, if ever there is one, must embody the basic
policy of freedom from nuclear weapons. Moreover, it would be well within the power of government to demand ocular
inspection and removal of nuclear arms.

Section 9. The State shall promote a just and dynamic social order that will ensure the prosperity and independence of
the nation and free the people from poverty through policies that provide adequate social services, promote full
employment, a rising standard of living, and an improved quality of life for all.

Section 10. The State shall promote social justice in all phases of national development.

‣ BERNAS — These provisions derive from the premises that poverty and gross inequality are major problems besetting the
nation and that these problems assault the dignity of the human person.

‣ Social justice, in the sense it is used in the Constitution, simply means the equalization of economic, political, and
social opportunities with special emphasis on the duty of the state to tilt the balance of social forces by favoring the
disadvantaged in life. In the language of the 1935 Convention, it means justice for the common tao; in the shibboleth
of the 1973 Convention, those who have less in life must have more in law.

‣ See Art. 13 on Social Justice

Section 11. The State values the dignity of every human person and guarantees full respect for human rights.

‣ See Art. 13 on Human Rights

Section 12. The State recognizes the sanctity of family life and shall protect and strengthen the family as a basic
autonomous social institution. It shall equally protect the life of the mother and the life of the unborn from conception.
The natural and primary right and duty of parents in the rearing of the youth for civic efficiency and the development of
moral character shall receive the support of the Government.

Section 13. The State recognizes the vital role of the youth in nation-building and shall promote and protect their physical,
moral, spiritual, intellectual, and social well-being. It shall inculcate in the youth patriotism and nationalism, and
encourage their involvement in public and civic affairs.

‣ See Art. 14 on the Family

‣ What effect does the declaration of family autonomy have?


‣ BERNAS — It accepts the principle that the family is anterior to the State and is not a creature of the State. It protects
the family from instrumentalization by the State.

‣ What is the legal meaning and purpose of the protection that is guaranteed for the unborn?
‣ BERNAS — This is NOT —

1. An assertion that the unborn is a legal person.

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2. An assertion that the life of the unborn is placed exactly on the level of the life of the mother.

‣ When necessary to save the life of the mother, the life of the unborn may be sacrificed; but not when the
purpose is merely to save the mother from emotional suffering, for which other remedies must be sought, or to
spare the child from a life of poverty, which can be attended to by welfare institutions.

‣ Why is the protection made to begin from the time of conception?


‣ BERNAS — The overriding purpose in asserting that the protection begins from the time of conception is to prevent
the State from adopting the doctrine in the US Supreme Court decision of Roe v. Wade which liberalized abortion laws
up to the sixth month of pregnancy by allowing abortion any time during the first six months of pregnancy provided it
can be done without danger to the mother. The understanding is that life begins at conception, although the definition
of conception can be a matter for science to specify. Incidentally, the respect for life manifested by the provision
harmonizes with the abolition of the death penalty and the ban on nuclear arms.

‣ In the matter of education of the youth, how do the respective rights of parents and of the State compare?
‣ BERNAS — The primary and natural right belongs to the parents. The Constitution affirms the primary right of parents
in the rearing of children to prepare them for a productive civic and social life and at the same time it affirms the
secondary and supportive role of the State. The principle is also rooted in the basic philosophy of liberty guaranteed
by the due process clause.

‣ Does all this mean that the State cannot intervene in the relation of parent and child?
‣ BERNAS — No. As parens patriae the State has the authority and duty to step in where parents fail to or are unable to
cope with their duties to their children.

‣ Doctrine of Parens Patriae— Literally, parent of the people. As such, the Government may act as guardian of the rights
of people who may be disadvantaged or suffering from some disability or misfortune. (Government of the Philippine
Islands v. Monte de Piedad)

Section 14. The State recognizes the role of women in nation-building, and shall ensure the fundamental equality before
the law of women and men.

‣ BERNAS — There are several provisions of laws (such as the Civil Code and the Revised Penal Code) which treat men
and women unequally. This is so worded as not to automatically dislocate such provisions on the subject. What it does is
to give impetus to the removal, through statutes, of existing inequalities. The general idea is for the law to ignore sex
where sex is not a relevant factor in determining rights and duties. Nor is the provision meant to ignore customs and
traditions.

‣ See Art. 13 on Women

Section 15. The State shall protect and promote the right to health of the people and instill health consciousness among
them.

Section 16. The State shall protect and advance the right of the people to a balanced and healthful ecology in accord with
the rhythm and harmony of nature.

‣ BERNAS — Sec. 16, as worded, recognizes an enforceable "right."

‣ What have been the jurisprudential consequences of this enforceable right?


1. It confers "standing" on minors to challenge logging policies of the government. (Oposa v. Factoran 1993)
2. The Supreme Court upheld the empowerment of the Laguna Lake Development Authority to protect the inhabitants
of the Laguna Lake Area from the deleterious effects of pollutants coming from garbage dumping and the discharge
of wastes in the area as against the local autonomy claim of local governments in the area. (Laguna Lake
Development Authority v. Court of Appeals)
3. Several government agents were required by mandamus to undertake the cleaning of Manila Bay and its
surroundings. (MMDA v. Residents of Manila Bay 2008)

Section 17. The State shall give priority to education, science and technology, arts, culture, and sports to foster patriotism
and nationalism, accelerate social progress, and promote total human liberation and development.

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‣ BERNAS — This does not mean that the government is not free to balance the demands of education against other
competing and urgent demands.

‣ See Art. 14 on Education

Section 18. The State affirms labor as a primary social economic force. It shall protect the rights of workers and promote
their welfare.

‣ BERNAS — This means that the human factor has primacy over the non- human factors in production.

‣ See Art. 13 on Labor

Section 19. The State shall develop a self-reliant and independent national economy effectively controlled by Filipinos.

‣ See Art. 12 on National Economy and Patrimony

‣ BERNAS — This is a guide for interpreting provisions on the national economy and patrimony. Any doubt must be
resolved in favor of self-reliance and independence and in favor of Filipinos.

Section 20. The State recognizes the indispensable role of the private sector, encourages private enterprise, and provides
incentives to needed investments.

Section 21. The State shall promote comprehensive rural development and agrarian reform.

‣ BERNAS — This includes not only agrarian reform. It also encompasses a broad spectrum of social, economic, human,
cultural, political, and even industrial development.

‣ See Art. 13 on Agrarian Reform

Section 22. The State recognizes and promotes the rights of indigenous cultural communities within the framework of
national unity and development.

‣ Indigenous cultural communities are discussed under Art. 12 on National Economy and Patrimony and under Art. 10 on
Local Governments.

Section 23. The State shall encourage non-governmental, community-based, or sectoral organizations that promote the
welfare of the nation.

Section 24. The State recognizes the vital role of communication and information in nation- building.

‣ See Art. 3, Sec. 7 on the right of citizens to information on matters of public concern

Section 25. The State shall ensure the autonomy of local governments.

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ARTICLE 2 — DECLARATION OF PRINCIPLES AND STATE POLICIES

‣ See Art. 10 on Local Governments

Section 26. The State shall guarantee equal access to opportunities for public service and prohibit political dynasties as
may be defined by law.

‣ BERNAS — The purpose of this provision is to give substance to the desire for the equalization of political opportunities.
However, the definition of "political dynasties" is left to the legislature.

‣ Does this provision mean that everyone has a right to be a candidate for President?
‣ NO. First of all, this provision is not self-executory. The provision does not contain any judicially enforceable
constitutional right but merely specifies a guideline for legislative or executive action. Secondly, it is within the power
of the state to limit the number of qualified candidates only to those who can afford to wage a nationwide campaign
and/or are nominated by political parties. (Pamatong v. Comelec 2004)

Section 27. The State shall maintain honesty and integrity in the public service and take positive and effective measures
against graft and corruption.

‣ See Art. 11 on Accountability of Public Officers

Section 28. Subject to reasonable conditions prescribed by law, the State adopts and implements a policy of full public
disclosure of all its transactions involving public interest.

‣ See Art. 3, Sec. 7 on the right of citizens to information on matters of public concern


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ARTICLE 6 — THE LEGISLATIVE DEPARTMENT

OVERVIEW OF THE BRANCHES OF GOVERNMENT

THREE GREAT BRANCHES OF GOVERNMENT


1. Legislative Department (Art. 6)

2. Executive Department (Art. 7)

3. Judicial Department (Art. 8)

IMPORTANT FUNDAMENTAL PRINCIPLES AND DOCTRINES


1. Principle of Separation of Powers — Each department of the government has exclusive cognizance of matters within
its jurisdiction, and is supreme within its own sphere.
2. Principle of Blending of Powers — Instances when powers are not confined exclusively within one department but are
assigned to or shared by several departments, e.g., enactment of general appropriations law.

3. Principle of Checks and Balances — This allows one department to resist encroachments upon its prerogatives or to
rectify mistakes or excesses committed by the other departments, e.g., veto power of the President as check on
improvident legislation, etc.

4. Doctrine of Political Questions — connotes what it means in ordinary parlance, namely a question of policy. It refers to
those questions which, under the Constitution, are to be decided by the people in their sovereign capacity, or in regard to
which full discretionary authority has been delegated to the legislative or executive branch of government. It is
concerned with issues dependent upon the wisdom, not legality, of a particular measure”

‣ Distinguish “political questions” with “justiciable or legal questions”

‣ A purely justiciable question — implies a given right, legally demandable and enforceable, an act or omission violative
of such right, and a remedy granted and sanctioned by law for said breach of right. (Casibang v. Aquino)
‣ BUT — Remember that the scope of the political question doctrine has been limited by the 2nd paragraph, Sec. 1,
Art. VIII, particularly the portion which vests in the judiciary the power “to determine whether or not there has been a
grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction on the part of any branch or instrumentality of
the Government”.

JURISPRUDENCE ON SEPARATION OF POWERS


‣ ANGARA VS. ELECTORAL COMMISSION, G.R. NO. L-45081, JULY 15, 1936
‣ The separation of powers is a fundamental principle in our system of government. It obtains not through express
provision but by actual division in our Constitution. Each department of the government has exclusive cognizance of
matters within its jurisdiction, and is supreme within its own sphere. But it does not follow from the fact that the three
powers are to be kept separate and distinct that the Constitution intended them to be absolutely unrestrained and
independent of each other. The Constitution has provided for an elaborate system of checks and balances to secure
coordination in the workings of the various departments of the government

‣ But in the main, the Constitution has blocked out with deft strokes and in bold lines, allotment of power to the
executive, the legislative and the judicial departments of the government. The overlapping and interlacing of functions
and duties between the several departments, however, sometimes makes it hard to say just where the political
excitement, the great landmarks of the Constitution are apt to be forgotten or marred, if not entirely obliterated, in
cases of conflict, the judicial departments is the only constitutional organ which can be called upon to determine the
proper allocation of powers between the several departments and among the integral or constituent units thereof.

‣ The Constitution is a definition of the powers of government. Who is to determine the nature, scope and extent of
such powers? The Constitution itself has provided for the instrumentality of the judiciary as the rational way. And
when the judiciary mediates to allocate constitutional boundaries; it does not assert any superiority over the other
departments; it does not in reality nullify or invalidate an act of the legislature, but only asserts the solemn and sacred
obligation assigned to it by the Constitution to determine conflicting claims of authority under the Constitution and to
established for the parties in an actual controversy the rights which that instrument secures and guarantees to them.
This is in truth all that is involved in what is termed "judicial supremacy" which properly is the power of judicial review
under the Constitution. Even the, this power of judicial review is limited to actual cases and controversies to be
exercised after full opportunity of argument by the parties, and limited further to the constitutional question raised or
the very lis mota presented. Any attempt at abstraction could only lead to dialectics and barren legal questions and to
sterile conclusions unrelated to actualities. Narrowed as its function is in this manner, the judiciary does not pass

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upon questions of wisdom, justice or expediency of legislation. More than that, courts accord the presumption of
constitutionality to legislative enactments, not only because the legislature is presumed to abide by the Constitution
but also because the judiciary in the determination of actual cases and controversies must reflect the wisdom and
justice of the people as expressed through their representatives in the executive and legislative departments of the
government.

‣ IN RE LAURETA, G.R. NO. L-68635, MARCH 12, 1987


‣ Our Constitution "as a definition of the powers of government"placed upon the judiciary the great burden of
"determining the nature, scope and extent of such powers" and 'when the judiciary mediates to allocate constitutional
boundaries, it does not assert any superiority over the other departments . . . but only asserts the solemn and sacred
obligation entrusted to it by the Constitution to determine conflicting claims of authority under the Constitution and to
establish for the parties in an actual controversy the rights which the instrument secures and guarantees to them.' “

‣ The Court has consistently stressed that "the doctrine of separation of powers calls for the executive, legislative and
judicial departments being left alone to discharge their duties as they see fit (Tan vs. Macapagal, 43 SCRA 677). It has
thus maintained in the same way that the judiciary has a right to expect that neither the President nor Congress would
cast doubt on the mainspring of its orders or decisions, it should refrain from speculating as to alleged hidden forces
at work that could have impelled either coordinate branch into acting the way it did. The concept of separation of
powers presupposes mutual respect by and between the three departments of the government. (Tecson vs. Salas, 34
SCRA 275, 286-287)

‣ To allow litigants to go beyond the Court's decisions and resolutions and claim that the members acted "with
deliberate bad faith" and rendered and "unjust resolution" in disregard or violation of the duty of their high office to act
upon their own independent consideration and judgment of the matter at hand would be to destroy the authenticity,
integrity and conclusiveness of such collegiate acts and resolutions and to disregard utterly the presumption of regular
performance of official duty. To allow such collateral attack would destroy the separation of powers and undermine the
role of the Supreme Court as the final arbiter of all justiciable disputes.

‣ Dissatisfied litigants and/or their counsels cannot without violating the separation of powers mandated by the
Constitution relitigate in another forum the final judgment of this Court on legal issues submitted by them and their
adversaries for final determination to and by the Supreme Court and which fall within the judicial power to determine
and adjudicate exclusively vested by the Constitution in the Supreme Court and in such inferior courts as may be
established by law.

‣ BELGICA VS OCHOA, G.R. NO. 208566, NOVEMBER 19, 2013


‣ The principle of separation of powers refers to the constitutional demarcation of the three fundamental powers of
government. In the celebrated words of Justice Laurel in Angara v. Electoral Commission, it means that the
"Constitution has blocked out with deft strokes and in bold lines, allotment of power to the executive, the legislative
and the judicial departments of the government.” To the legislative branch of government, through Congress, belongs
the power to make laws; to the executive branch of government, through the President, belongs the power to enforce
laws; and to the judicial branch of government, through the Court, belongs the power to interpret laws.

‣ Because the three great powers have been, by constitutional design, ordained in this respect, "each department of the
government has exclusive cognizance of matters within its jurisdiction, and is supreme within its own sphere.” Thus,
"the legislature has no authority to execute or construe the law, the executive has no authority to make or construe the
law, and the judiciary has no power to make or execute the law.” The principle of separation of powers and its
concepts of autonomy and independence stem from the notion that the powers of government must be divided to
avoid concentration of these powers in any one branch; the division, it is hoped, would avoid any single branch from
lording its power over the other branches or the citizenry. To achieve this purpose, the divided power must be wielded
by co-equal branches of government that are equally capable of independent action in exercising their respective
mandates. Lack of independence would result in the inability of one branch of government to check the arbitrary or
self-interest assertions of another or others.

‣ Broadly speaking, there is a violation of the separation of powers principle when one branch of government unduly
encroaches on the domain of another. US Supreme Court decisions instruct that the principle of separation of powers
may be violated in two (2) ways: firstly, "one branch may interfere impermissibly with the other’s performance of its
constitutionally assigned function”; and "alternatively, the doctrine may be violated when one branch assumes a
function that more properly is entrusted to another.” In other words, there is a violation of the principle when there is
impermissible (a) interference with and/or (b) assumption of another department‘s functions.

WHERE LEGISLATIVE POWER IS VESTED

Section 1. The legislative power shall be vested in the Congress of the Philippines which shall consist of a Senate and a
House of Representatives, except to the extent reserved to the people by the provision on initiative and referendum.

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Section 32. The Congress shall, as early as possible, provide for a system of initiative and referendum, and the exceptions
therefrom, whereby the people can directly propose and enact laws or approve or reject any act or law or part thereof
passed by the Congress or local legislative body after the registration of a petition therefor signed by at least ten per
centum of the total number of registered voters, of which every legislative district must be represented by at least three
per centum of the registered voters thereof.

WHAT IS LEGISLATIVE POWER?


‣ It is the authority to—

1. Propose

2. Enact/make

3. Amend/alter, or

4. Repeal laws

KINDS OF LEGISLATIVE POWER AS TO THE SOURCE


1. Original Legislative Power— possessed by the sovereign people

2. Derivative or Subordinate Legislative Power — delegated by the sovereign people to legislative bodies and is
subordinate to the original power of the people.

‣ BERNAS — The Constitution is the work or will of the people themselves, in their original, sovereign, and unlimited
capacity. Law is the work or will of the legislature in their derivative and subordinate capacity. The one is the work of the
creator and the other of the creature. The Constitution fixes limits to the exercise of legislative authority and prescribes
the orbit within which it must move

KINDS OF LEGISLATIVE POWER AS TO THE EXTENT


1. Constituent Legislative Power — the power to amend or revise the Constitution

2. Ordinary Legislative Power — power to pass ordinary laws

LIMITATIONS ON LEGISLATIVE POWER


1. Substantive limits— curtail the contents or substance of a law

a. Express — Bill of rights, on appropriations (Secs. 25 and 29 (1) & (2), Art. 6); On taxation (Secs. 28 and 29 (3), Art. 6;
Sec. 4 (3), Art. 14); On constitutional appellate jurisdiction of the Supreme Court (Sec.30, Art. 6); No law granting a
title of royalty or nobility shall be passed (Sec. 31, Art. 6)

b. Implied — Non-delegation of powers; and Prohibition against the passage of irrepealable laws.
2. Procedural limits — curtail the manner of passing laws

‣ Ex. — a bill must generally be approved by the President before it becomes law, laws should have only one subject, to
be expressed in the title.
3. Principle of separation of powers and the system of checks and balances— operates as an implicit limitation on
legislative powers as on the other two powers.
‣ Three great powers of government —

a. Legislative

b. Executive

c. Judicial

‣ It means that legislation belongs to the legislative, execution to the executive, and settlement of legal controversies to
the judiciary. Each is prevented from invading the domain of the others

‣ The separation is not total. The system allows for checks and balances. The net effect of which being that, in general,
no one department is able to act without the cooperation of at least one of the other departments.

‣ Such as — legislation needs the final approval of the president, president cannot act against laws passed by
Congress and must obtain the concurrence of Congress to complete significant acts, money can be released from
the treasury only by authority of Congress, the Supreme Court can declare the acts of Congress or the President
unconstitutional.

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‣ The purpose is to prevent the concentration of powers in one department and thereby to avoid tyranny. But the price
paid for the insurance against tyranny is the risk of a degree of inefficiency and even the danger of gridlock.

‣ The purpose is to save the people from autocracy.

WHERE LEGISLATIVE POWER IS VESTED


1. PHILIPPINE CONGRESS
‣ This consists of the—

a. Senate

b. House of Representatives

2. THE PEOPLE THROUGH INITIATIVE AND REFERENDUM


‣ A measure of legislative power is reserved to the people by the provisions on initiative and referendum
‣ The people, through the amendatory process, exercise constituent power, and through initiative and referendum,
ordinary legislative power

‣ This is based on past experience whereby the people have realized that legislative assemblies cannot always be
trusted to do what is best for the people. Hence the people have reserved to do themselves the authority to correct
legislative mistakes or to supplement legislative inadequacies whether on the national level or on the local level of
legislation.

‣ The power of initiative and referendum is the power of the people directly to propose and enact laws or approve or
reject any act or law or part thereof passed by the Congress or Local Legislative Body

‣ The purpose is to institutionalise “people power” by providing for an instrument which can be used should the
legislature show itself indifferent to the needs of the people.

‣ See Sec. 32 — The Congress shall, as early as possible, provide for a system of initiative and referendum, and the
exceptions therefrom, whereby the people can directly propose and enact laws or approve or reject any act or law or
part thereof passed by the Congress or local legislative body after the registration of a petition therefor signed by at
least ten per centum of the total number of registered voters, of which every legislative district must be represented by
at least three per centum of the registered voters thereof.
‣ See RA 6735 which implements Sec. 32

3. LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNITS THROUGH THE REGIONAL OR LOCAL LEGISLATIVE BODIES


‣ But only in a limited extent

‣ The Constitution itself delegates legislative powers to the local law-making bodies of LGUs (See Art. 10)

STRUCTURAL BODY OF THE CONGRESS


‣ The Philippines has a bicameral body, or two bodies — the senate and the house of representatives

‣ This is as distinguished from a unicameral body

‣ What are the advantages of “bicameralism”?


1. Allows for a body with a national perspective to check the parochial tendency of representatives elected by the
district.

2. Allows for a more careful study of legislation

3. Makes the legislature less susceptible to control by the Executive

4. Serves as training ground for national leaders

‣ What are the advantages of “unicameralism”?


‣ Simplicity of organization resulting in economy and efficiency, facility in pinpointing responsibility for legislation, and
avoidance of duplication.

‣ History of the Philippine Congressional Structure —


1. Jones Law — bicameral

2. 1935 Constitution — initially unicameral (national assembly) but by subsequent amendment, it was changed to
bicameral

3. 1973 Constitution —unicameral (national assembly, then changed to the batasang pambansa)

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CHARACTERISTICS OF THE LEGISLATIVE POWER OF CONGRESS
1. DERIVATIVE
‣ It is merely delegated to them by the sovereign.
2. PLENARY
‣ This means that Congress may legislate only any subject-matter

‣ This is distinguished from “enumerated powers” of the US Congress which consists only of the legislative powers
enumerated in their Federal Constitution.

‣ Any power, deemed to be legislative by usage and tradition, is necessarily possessed by Congress, unless the
Constitution has lodged it elsewhere.

‣ Thus, Congress cannot pass irrepealable laws.

‣ The power of present and future legislatures must remain plenary.

‣ When one legislature attempts to pass an irreparable law, to that extent it attempts to limit the power of future
legislatures.

‣ To say that legislative may pass irreparable laws, is to say that it may alter the very constitution from which it
derives its authority.

‣ The power of any legislature can be limited only by the Constitution

‣ Can the legislature pass laws providing for irrepealability for a certain period of time (e.g. cannot be
repealed for 3 years)?
3. NON-DELEGABLE
‣ Legislative power must remain where the people have lodged it.

‣ This is based on the plenary grant of legislative power

‣ What is delegated cannot be delegated further. Delegata potestas non potest delegate

‣ This is based on the principles of separation of powers and due process of law

‣ EXCEPTIONS — In these cases, legislative power may be delegated further —


a. Delegation to local governments units
‣ This is sanctioned by immemorial practice (Rubi vs Provincial Board 1919)

b. Delegation authorized by the Constitution


‣ The Constitution allows in certain instances the delegation of legislative power to the President—

i. Delegation of emergency powers to the President (Art. 6, Sec. 23[2])


ii. Delegation of the power to fix tariff rates, import and export quotas, tonnage and wharfage dues, and other
duties or imposts to the President. (Art. 6, Sec. 28[2])

DELEGATION OF RULE-MAKING/QUASI-LEGISLATIVE POWERS


‣ It is common knowledge that, as a matter of practice, numerous statutes have been passed creating
administrative agencies and authorizing them to exercise vast regulatory powers and the issuance of “rules and
regulations” to implement laws. Such rules have the force of law. Is this a delegation of “law-making power”?
‣ NO. What is delegated is NOT legislative or law-making power, but rather, rule-making power or “law execution”.

‣ Such power is known as “quasi-legislative”

‣ Quasi-legislative power is the authority delegated by the law-making body to the administrative body to adopt
rules and regulations intended to carry out the provisions of a law and implement legislative policy.

‣ Legislative power involves the discretion to determine what the law shall be. Quasi- legislative power only involves
the discretion to determine how the law shall be enforced. The former cannot be delegated. The latter can be
delegated.

‣ Administrative agencies may be given the —

1. Power of Subordinate or Supplemental Legislation — Filling up the details” of an already complete statute for
its enforcement or

2. Power of Contingent Legislation — Ascertain the facts necessary to bring a “contingent” law into actual
operation

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VALIDITY OF SUBORDINATE/CONTINGENT LEGISLATION
‣ RULE — CONGRESS MAY DELEGATE RULE-MAKING POWERS TO ADMINISTRATIVE AGENCIES. HOWEVER, THE STATUTE MAKING
THE DELEGATION MUST—

1. BE COMPLETE IN ITSELF (COMPLETENESS TEST)


‣ It must set forth therein the policy to be carried out or implemented by the delegate

‣ Without a statutory declaration of policy, the delegate would in effect, make or formulate such policy, which is the
essence of law

2. FIX SUFFICIENT STANDARDS (SUFFICIENT STANDARDS TEST)


‣ It must fix a standard, the limits of which are sufficiently determinate or determinable to which the delegate must
conform in the performance of his functions.

‣ Without such standard, there would be no means to determine, with reasonable certainty, whether the delegate
has acted within or beyond the scope of his authority.

‣ NOTE — These requirements are to ensure that the power delegated by the legislature to administrative agencies is not
law-making power. If they are satisfied, the regulations passed by an administrative body pursuant to the delegation
made by the statute are just as binding as if the regulation had been written in the original statute itself. If, however, these
requirements are not satisfied, the regulation will not be allowed to affect private rights.

COMPOSITION OF SENATE AND ELECTION OF ITS MEMBERS

Section 2. The Senate shall be composed of twenty-four Senators who shall be elected at large by the qualified voters of
the Philippines, as may be provided by law.

‣ What is the composition of the Senate?


‣ Total of 24 senators

‣ How are senators elected?


‣ They are elected at large.

‣ This means that senatorial candidates submit themselves to a vote of the entire national electorate.

‣ The rationale is that the Senate should look on problems from a national and not parochial perspective.

‣ Can the composition of the Senate or the manner of electing them be modified by ordinary legislation? (note the
phrase “as may be provided by law”)
‣ BERNAS — NO. Both can only be changed by constitutional amendment

QUALIFICATIONS OF THE MEMBERS OF SENATE

Section 3. No person shall be a Senator unless he is a natural-born citizen of the Philippines and, on the day of the
election, is at least thirty-five years of age, able to read and write, a registered voter, and a resident of the Philippines for
not less than two years immediately preceding the day of the election.

ARTICLE 4 — CITIZENSHIP
Section 2. Natural-born citizens are those who are citizens of the Philippines from birth without having to perform any act
to acquire or perfect their Philippine citizenship. Those who elect Philippine citizenship in accordance with paragraph (3),
Section 1 hereof shall be deemed natural-born citizens.

1. Natural born Filipino citizen

2. At least thirty-five years of age on the day of the election

3. Able to read and write

4. Registered voter

5. Philippine resident or not less than two years immediately preceding the day of the election

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NATURAL-BORN FILIPINO CITIZENS


‣ Who are natural born Filipinos?
‣ RULE — Citizens of the Philippines from birth without having to perform any act to acquire or perfect their Philippine
citizenship.

‣ EXCEPT — Those born before January 17, 1973, of Filipino mothers, who elect Philippine citizenship upon
reaching the age of majority are deemed natural-born citizens.

‣ What if a natural-born Filipino loses his citizenship by naturalization in another country but later is repatriated, is
he considered a natural-born citizen?
‣ YES. He recovers his status as a natural-born and therefore qualified to be a member of Congress. (Bengzon vs Cruz
2001)

TERMS OF OFFICE OF MEMBERS OF SENATE

Section 4. The term of office of the Senators shall be six years and shall commence, unless otherwise provided by law, at
noon on the thirtieth day of June next following their election. No Senator shall serve for more than two consecutive
terms. Voluntary renunciation of the office for any length of time shall not be considered as an interruption in the
continuity of his service for the full term of which he was elected.

ARTICLE 18 — TRANSITORY PROVISIONS


Section 2. The Senators, Members of the House of Representatives, and the local officials first elected under this
Constitution shall serve until noon of June 30, 1992.

Of the Senators elected in the elections in 1992, the first twelve obtaining the highest number of votes shall serve for six
years and the remaining twelve for three years.

‣ How long is the term of office of a Senator?


‣ Generally, 6 years

‣ However, the following senators only served for a shorter period of time—

1. Senators elected in the May 1987 elections — 5 years only

2. 12 Senators elected in the 1992 elections — 3 years only

‣ See Art. 18, Sec. 2 — this creates a “staggering of terms” for Senators

‣ Thus, the 24 Senate seats are elected at 3-year intervals. 12 seats every 3 years but the term is always 6 years
after 1995.

‣ When does it commence?


‣ Noon of June 30 following the election, unless otherwise provided by law

‣ Is there a limitation of terms?


‣ There is no limit on the total number of terms a Senator may serve. However, he may NOT serve for more than 2
consecutive terms.

‣ A Senator may serve for more than 2 terms, provided they are not consecutive.

‣ Thus, if a Senators has already served for 2 consecutive terms (12 years), he can only run for a seat again on the
next election after the year of the end of his last term. Which is 3 years thereafter, due to the staggering of terms

‣ Example: If a Senator served for two consecutive terms 2004-2010 and 2010 to 2016, he cannot run for re-election
in 2016. The soonest he can run for Senator again is on 2019.
‣ What if a Senator voluntarily renounces his office? Is such term counted for purposes of the limitation?
‣ YES. Voluntary renunciation of the office for any length of time shall not be considered as an interruption in the
continuity of his service for the full term of which he was elected.

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COMPOSITION OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES AND ELECTION OF ITS MEMBERS

Section 5.
(1) The House of Representatives shall be composed of not more than two hundred and fifty members, unless otherwise
fixed by law, who shall be elected from legislative districts apportioned among the provinces, cities, and the
Metropolitan Manila area in accordance with the number of their respective inhabitants, and on the basis of a uniform
and progressive ratio, and those who, as provided by law, shall be elected through a party-list system of registered
national, regional, and sectoral parties or organizations.
(2) The party-list representatives shall constitute twenty per centum of the total number of representatives including
those under the party list. For three consecutive terms after the ratification of this Constitution, one-half of the seats
allocated to party-list representatives shall be filled, as provided by law, by selection or election from the labor,
peasant, urban poor, indigenous cultural communities, women, youth, and such other sectors as may be provided by
law, except the religious sector.
(3) Each legislative district shall comprise, as far as practicable, contiguous, compact, and adjacent territory. Each city
with a population of at least two hundred fifty thousand, or each province, shall have at least one representative.
(4) Within three years following the return of every census, the Congress shall make a reapportionment of legislative
districts based on the standards provided in this section.

COMPOSITION OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES


‣ What is the total composition of the House of Representatives (HREP)?
‣ Not more than 250 members

‣ EXCEPT — if otherwise provided by law.

‣ Thus, the HREP may change its own total composition by ordinary legislation. No similar provision for the
Senate. (Currently, the total composition of the HREP is 297)

‣ How are members of the HREP elected?


‣ They are elected from —

1. Legislative districts

2. National, regional and sectoral parties — This is now provided for under the party-list system (see RA 7941)

CLASSIFICATION OF MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES


1. District Representatives — represent their respective legislative district

‣ These form 80% of the members of the HREP

2. Party-list Representatives — elected through the party-list system

‣ These form 20% of the members of the HREP

‣ The party-list representatives shall constitute twenty per centum of the total number of representatives including those
under the party list.(Sec. 5[2])
3. Sectoral Representatives — these only existed until 1998.

‣ For three consecutive terms after the ratification of this Constitution, one-half of the seats allocated to party-list
representatives shall be filled, as provided by law, by selection or election from the labor, peasant, urban poor,
indigenous cultural communities, women, youth, and such other sectors as may be provided by law, except the
religious sector. (Sec. 5[2])
‣ RATIONALE — so that these groups can gather and solidify their electoral base and brace themselves in the multi-
party electoral contest with the more veteran political groups once the party-list system is fully opened. (Atong
Paglaum vs COMELEC 2013)

CREATION AND APPORTIONMENT OF LEGISLATIVE DISTRICTS


‣ How are legislative districts created?
‣ Only by Law.

‣ The ARMM Regional Assembly cannot create legislative districts. Only Congress can create provinces and cities
because the creation of provinces and cities necessarily includes the creation of legislative districts, a power only

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Congress can exercise under Section 5, Article VI of the Constitution and Section 3 of the Ordinance appended to the
Constitution. The ARMM Regional Assembly cannot create a province without a legislative district because the
Constitution mandates that every province shall have a legislative district. (Sema vs COMELEC 2008)
‣ The reapportionment of legislative districts may be made through a special law, such as in the charter of a new city.
The Constitution 9 clearly provides that Congress shall be composed of not more than two hundred fifty (250)
members, unless otherwise fixed by law. As thus worded, the Constitution did not preclude Congress from increasing
its membership by passing a law, other than a general reapportionment of the law. This is its exactly what was done
by Congress in enacting R.A. No. 7854 and providing for an increase in Makati's legislative district. Moreover, to hold
that reapportionment can only be made through a general apportionment law, with a review of all the legislative
districts allotted to each local government unit nationwide, would create an inequitable situation where a new city or
province created by Congress will be denied legislative representation for an indeterminate period of time. (Tobias vs
Abalos 1994)
‣ When one of the municipalities of a congressional district is converted into a city large enough to entitle it to one
legislative district, the indent effect is the splitting of the district into tow. Such incidental arising of a new district in
this manner need not be preceded by a census (Tobias vs Abalos 1994)
‣ If, however, as a result of the increase of the number of legislative districts, either because of the creation of a new
province or of a new city, an imbalance results in the remaining legislative dzisctrics of the mother province, the
COMELEC has no authority to correct the imbalance by the transferring of municipalities from one district to the other.
Correction of the imbalance must await the enactment of a reapportionment law. (Montejo vs COMELEC 1995)

‣ Does the creation of legislative district need confirmation by plebiscite?


‣ NO. The creation of legislative districts do NOT need confirmation by plebiscite if it does not involve the creation of a
local government unit. (Bagabuyo vs COMELEC 2008)

‣ How should legislative districts be apportioned and/or created?


‣ Observe the following rules —

1. They should be apportioned among the provinces, cities, and the Metropolitan Manila area in accordance with the
number of their respective inhabitants and based on a uniform and progressive ratio.

‣ The underlying principle behind this rule for apportionment is the concept of equality of representation which is
a basic principle of republicanism. One man’s vote should carry as much weight as the vote of every other
man.

2. Each legislative district must comprise of, as far as practicable, contiguous, compact, and adjacent territory.

‣ This is to avoid “Gerrymandering” — this is a term employed to describe an apportionment of representative


districts so contrived as to give an unfair advantage to the party in power. It is the formation of one legislative
district out of separate territories for the purpose of favoring a candidate or a party. The Constitution proscribes
gerrymandering, as it mandates each legislative district to comprise, as far as practicable, a contiguous,
compact and adjacent territory. (Navarro vs Ermita 2010)

3. The following must have at least 1 district representative —

a. Cities with a population of at least 250,000

b. Provinces (regardless of population)

4. Within three years following the return of every census, the Congress shall make a reapportionment of legislative
districts based on the standards provided in this section.

‣ Can the creation of legislative districts be challenged in Courts?


‣ YES. The creation of legislative districts is NOT a political question. The courts may review it.

‣ The constitutionality of a legislative apportionment act is a judicial question, and not one which the court cannot
consider on the ground that it is a political question. It is well settled that the passage of apportionment acts is not so
exclusively within the political power of the legislature as to preclude a court from inquiring into their constitutionality
when the question is properly brought before it. (Aldaba vs COMELEC 2010).

THE PARTY-LIST SYSTEM

RA 7941 — PARTY LIST SYSTEM ACT (1995)


Section 2. Declaration of Policy. The State shall promote proportional representation in the election of representatives to
the House of Representatives through a party-list system of registered national, regional and sectoral parties or
organizations or coalitions thereof, which will enable Filipino citizens belonging to marginalized and under-represented
sectors, organizations and parties, and who lack well-defined political constituencies but who could contribute to the

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formulation and enactment of appropriate legislation that will benefit the nation as a whole, to become members of the
House of Representatives. Towards this end, the State shall develop and guarantee a full, free and open party system in
order to attain the broadcast possible representation of party, sectoral or group interests in the House of Representatives
by enhancing their chances to compete for and win seats in the legislature, and shall provide the simplest scheme
possible.

Section 3. Definition of Terms.


(a) The party-list system is a mechanism of proportional representation in the election of representatives to the House of
Representatives from national, regional and sectoral parties or organizations or coalitions thereof registered with the
Commission on Elections (COMELEC). Component parties or organizations of a coalition may participate
independently provided the coalition of which they form part does not participate in the party-list system.
(b) A party means either a political party or a sectoral party or a coalition of parties.
(c) A political party refers to an organized group of citizens advocating an ideology or platform, principles and policies for
the general conduct of government and which, as the most immediate means of securing their adoption, regularly
nominates and supports certain of its leaders and members as candidates for public office. It is a national party when
its constituency is spread over the geographical territory of at least a majority of the regions. It is a regional party
when its constituency is spread over the geographical territory of at least a majority of the cities and provinces
comprising the region.
(d) A sectoral party refers to an organized group of citizens belonging to any of the sectors enumerated in Section 5
hereof whose principal advocacy pertains to the special interest and concerns of their sector,
(e) A sectoral organization refers to a group of citizens or a coalition of groups of citizens who share similar physical
attributes or characteristics, employment, interests or concerns.
(f) A coalition refers to an aggrupation of duly registered national, regional, sectoral parties or organizations for political
and/or election purposes.

Section 4. Manifestation to Participate in the Party-List System. Any party, organization, or coalition already registered
with the Commission need not register anew. However, such party, organization, or coalition shall file with the
Commission, not later than ninety (90) days before the election, a manifestation of its desire to participate in the party-list
system.

Section 5. Registration. Any organized group of persons may register as a party, organization or coalition for purposes of
the party-list system by filing with the COMELEC not later than ninety (90) days before the election a petition verified by
its president or secretary stating its desire to participate in the party-list system as a national, regional or sectoral party or
organization or a coalition of such parties or organizations, attaching thereto its constitution, by-laws, platform or
program of government, list of officers, coalition agreement and other relevant information as the COMELEC may require:
Provided, That the sectors shall include labor, peasant, fisherfolk, urban poor, indigenous cultural communities, elderly,
handicapped, women, youth, veterans, overseas workers, and professionals.

The COMELEC shall publish the petition in at least two (2) national newspapers of general circulation.

The COMELEC shall, after due notice and hearing, resolve the petition within fifteen (15) days from the date it was
submitted for decision but in no case not later than sixty (60) days before election.

Section 6. Refusal and/or Cancellation of Registration. The COMELEC may, motu propio or upon verified complaint of
any interested party, refuse or cancel, after due notice and hearing, the registration of any national, regional or sectoral
party, organization or coalition on any of the following grounds:
(1) It is a religious sect or denomination, organization or association, organized for religious purposes;
(2) It advocates violence or unlawful means to seek its goal;
(3) It is a foreign party or organization;
(4) It is receiving support from any foreign government, foreign political party, foundation, organization, whether directly
or through any of its officers or members or indirectly through third parties for partisan election purposes;
(5) It violates or fails to comply with laws, rules or regulations relating to elections;
(6) It declares untruthful statements in its petition;
(7) It has ceased to exist for at least one (1) year; or
(8) It fails to participate in the last two (2) preceding elections or fails to obtain at least two per centum (2%) of the votes
cast under the party-list system in the two (2) preceding elections for the constituency in which it has registered.

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Section 7. Certified List of Registered Parties. The COMELEC shall, not later than sixty (60) days before election, prepare
a certified list of national, regional, or sectoral parties, organizations or coalitions which have applied or who have
manifested their desire to participate under the party-list system and distribute copies thereof to all precincts for posting
in the polling places on election day. The names of the party-list nominees shall not be shown on the certified list.

Section 8. Nomination of Party-List Representatives. Each registered party, organization or coalition shall submit to the
COMELEC not later than forty-five (45) days before the election a list of names, not less than five (5), from which party-list
representatives shall be chosen in case it obtains the required number of votes.

A person may be nominated in one (1) list only. Only persons who have given their consent in writing may be named in the
list. The list shall not include any candidate for any elective office or a person who has lost his bid for an elective office in
the immediately preceding election. No change of names or alteration of the order of nominees shall be allowed after the
same shall have been submitted to the COMELEC except in cases where the nominee dies, or withdraws in writing his
nomination, becomes incapacitated in which case the name of the substitute nominee shall be placed last in the list.
Incumbent sectoral representatives in the House of Representatives who are nominated in the party-list system shall not
be considered resigned.

Section 9. Qualifications of Party-List Nominees. No person shall be nominated as party-list representative unless he is
a natural-born citizen of the Philippines, a registered voter, a resident of the Philippines for a period of not less than one
(1)year immediately preceding the day of the election, able to read and write, a bona fide member of the party or
organization which he seeks to represent for at least ninety (90) days preceding the day of the election, and is at least
twenty-five (25) years of age on the day of the election.

In case of a nominee of the youth sector, he must at least be twenty-five (25) but not more than thirty (30) years of age on
the day of the election. Any youth sectoral representative who attains the age of thirty (30) during his term shall be
allowed to continue in office until the expiration of his term.

Section 10. Manner of Voting. Every voter shall be entitled to two (2) votes: the first is a vote for candidate for member of
the House of Representatives in his legislative district, and the second, a vote for the party, organizations, or coalition he
wants represented in the house of Representatives: Provided, That a vote cast for a party, sectoral organization, or
coalition not entitled to be voted for shall not be counted: Provided, finally, That the first election under the party-list
system shall be held in May 1998.

The COMELEC shall undertake the necessary information campaign for purposes of educating the electorate on the
matter of the party-list system.

Section 11. Number of Party-List Representatives. The party-list representatives shall constitute twenty per centum
(20%) of the total number of the members of the House of Representatives including those under the party-list.

For purposes of the May 1998 elections, the first five (5) major political parties on the basis of party representation in the
House of Representatives at the start of the Tenth Congress of the Philippines shall not be entitled to participate in the
party-list system.

In determining the allocation of seats for the second vote, the following procedure shall be observed:
(a) The parties, organizations, and coalitions shall be ranked from the highest to the lowest based on the number of votes
they garnered during the elections.
(b) The parties, organizations, and coalitions receiving at least two percent (2%) of the total votes cast for the party-list
system shall be entitled to one seat each: Provided, That those garnering more than two percent (2%) of the votes
shall be entitled to additional seats in proportion to their total number of votes : Provided, finally, That each party,
organization, or coalition shall be entitled to not more than three (3) seats.

Section 12. Procedure in Allocating Seats for Party-List Representatives. The COMELEC shall tally all the votes for the
parties, organizations, or coalitions on a nationwide basis, rank them according to the number of votes received and
allocate party-list representatives proportionately according to the percentage of votes obtained by each party,
organization, or coalition as against the total nationwide votes cast for the party-list system.

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Section 13. How Party-List Representatives are Chosen. Party-list representatives shall be proclaimed by the COMELEC
based on the list of names submitted by the respective parties, organizations, or coalitions to the COMELEC according to
their ranking in said list.

Section 14. Term of Office. Party-list representatives shall be elected for a term of three (3) years which shall begin,
unless otherwise provided by law, at noon on the thirtieth day of June next following their election. No party-list
representatives shall serve for more than three (3) consecutive terms. Voluntary renunciation of the office for any length of
time shall not be considered as an interruption in the continuity his service for the full term for which he was elected.

Section 15. Change of Affiliation; Effect. Any elected party-list representative who changes his political party or sectoral
affiliation during his term of office shall forfeit his seat: Provided, That if he changes his political party or sectoral
affiliation within six (6) months before an election, he shall not be eligible for nomination as party-list representative under
his new party or organization.

Section 16. Vacancy. In case of vacancy in the seats reserved for party-list representatives, the vacancy shall be
automatically filled by the next representative from the list of nominees in the order submitted to the COMELEC by the
same party, organization, or coalition, who shall serve for the unexpired term. If the list is exhausted, the party,
organization coalition concerned shall submit additional nominees.

WHAT IS THE PARTY-LIST SYSTEM?


‣ The party-list system is a mechanism of proportional representation in the election of representatives to the House of
Representatives from national, regional and sectoral parties or organizations or coalitions thereof registered with the
Commission on Elections (COMELEC). Component parties or organizations of a coalition may participate independently
provided the coalition of which they form part does not participate in the party-list system. (Sec. 3, RA 7941)

RATIONALE OF THE PARTY-LIST SYSTEM


‣ Basically, the purpose is to give the poor a chance to participate in politics.
‣ The party-list system is intended to democratize political power by giving political parties that cannot win in legislative
district elections a chance to win seats in the House of Representatives. It is hoped that the system will encourage the
growth of a multi-party system and at the same time giving power to those who traditionally do not win in elections.
(Atong Paglaum vs COMELEC 2013)

‣ COMMISSIONER CHRISTIAN MONSOD (Atong Paglaum vs COMELEC 2013) —


‣ Under the party list system, there are no reserved seats for sectors. Let us say, laborers and farmers can form a
sectoral party or a sectoral organization that will then register and present candidates of their party. How do the
mechanics go? Essentially, under the party list system, every voter has two votes, so there is no discrimination. First,
he will vote for the representative of his legislative district. That is one vote. In that same ballot, he will be asked: What
party or organization or coalition do you wish to be represented in the Assembly? And here will be attached a list of
the parties, organizations or coalitions that have been registered with the COMELEC and are entitled to be put in that
list. This can be a regional party, a sectoral party, a national party, UNIDO, Magsasaka or a regional party in Mindanao.
One need not be a farmer to say that he wants the farmers' party to be represented in the Assembly. Any citizen can
vote for any party. At the end of the day, the COMELEC will then tabulate the votes that had been garnered by each
party or each organization — one does not have to be a political party and register in order to participate as a party —
and count the votes and from there derive the percentage of the votes that had been cast in favor of a party,
organization or coalition.

‣ When such parties register with the COMELEC, we are assuming that 50 of the 250 seats will be for the party list
system. So, we have a limit of 30 percent of 50. That means that the maximum that any party can get out of these 50
seats is 15. When the parties register they then submit a list of 15 names. They have to submit these names because
these nominees have to meet the minimum qualifications of a Member of the National Assembly. At the end of the
day, when the votes are tabulated, one gets the percentages. Let us say, UNIDO gets 10 percent or 15 percent of the
votes; KMU gets 5 percent; a women’s party gets 2 1/2 percent and anybody who has at least 2 1/2 percent of the
vote qualifies and the 50 seats are apportioned among all of these parties who get at least 2 1/2 percent of the vote.

‣ What does that mean? It means that any group or party who has a constituency of, say, 500,000 nationwide gets a
seat in the National Assembly. What is the justification for that? When we allocate legislative districts, we are saying
that any district that has 200,000 votes gets a seat. There is no reason why a group that has a national constituency,
even if it is a sectoral or special interest group, should not have a voice in the National Assembly. It also means that,
let us say, there are three or four labor groups, they all register as a party or as a group. If each of them gets only one
percent or five of them get one percent, they are not entitled to any representative. So, they will begin to think that if

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they really have a common interest, they should band together, form a coalition and get five percent of the vote and,
therefore, have two seats in the Assembly. Those are the dynamics of a party list system.

‣ We feel that this approach gets around the mechanics of sectoral representation while at the same time making sure
that those who really have a national constituency or sectoral constituency will get a chance to have a seat in the
National Assembly. These sectors or these groups may not have the constituency to win a seat on a legislative district
basis. They may not be able to win a seat on a district basis but surely, they will have votes on a nationwide basis.

‣ The purpose of this is to open the system. In the past elections, we found out that there were certain groups or
parties that, if we count their votes nationwide; have about 1,000,000 or 1,500,000 votes. But they were always
third place or fourth place in each of the districts. So, they have no voice in the Assembly. But this way, they
would have five or six representatives in the Assembly even if they would not win individually in legislative
districts. So, that is essentially the mechanics, the purpose and objectives of the party list system.

QUALIFICATIONS TO JOIN THE PARTY-LIST SYSTEM


‣ Who decides whether a party or organization is qualified to join the party-list system?
‣ The Commission on Elections (COMELEC).

‣ Qualification is a question of fact, and therefore is NOT subject to review by Certiorari (VC Candangen vs COMELEC
2009)
‣ Who are qualified to join the party-list system?
‣ Parties, organizations, or coalitions.

‣ A party means either a political party or a sectoral party or a coalition of parties. These may either be —

1. National — when its constituency is spread over the geographical territory of at least a majority of the regions.

2. Regional — when its constituency is spread over the geographical territory of at least a majority of the cities and
provinces comprising the region.

3. Sectoral — refers to a group of citizens or a coalition of groups of citizens who share similar physical attributes or
characteristics, employment, interests or concerns.

‣ What are the rules to observe regarding the qualifications of national, regional, or sectoral parties or
organizations? (See Atong Paglaum vs COMELEC 2013 which modifies the ruling in Ang Bagong Bayan 2001) —

1. NATIONAL AND REGIONAL POLITICAL PARTIES OR ORGANIZATIONS (WHETHER MAJOR OR NOT)


‣ These refer to “political parties” defined as an organized group of citizens advocating an ideology or platform,
principles and policies for the general conduct of government and which, as the most immediate means of
securing their adoption, regularly nominates and supports certain of its leaders and members as candidates for
public office.

‣ They do NOT need to organize along sectoral lines and do NOT need to represent any "marginalized and
underrepresented" sector.

‣ Their manner of participation in the party-list elections depends on—

a. If they do not field candidates in legislative district elections — they can register itself as a political party
or organization

b. If they field candidates in legislative district elections — they can still participate in party-list elections BUT
only through its sectoral wing that can separately register under the party-list system.

‣ The sectoral wing is by itself an independent sectoral party, and is linked to a political party through a
coalition.

‣ put requirements and definition of sectoral wings

2. SECTORAL PARTIES OR ORGANIZATIONS


‣ It is enough that their principal advocacy pertains to the special interest and concerns of their sector. They may
either be —

a. Marginalized and Underrepresented


‣ These include —

i. Labor

ii. Peasant

iii. Fisherfolk

iv. Urban poor

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v. Indigenous cultural communities

vi. Elderly

vii. Handicapped

viii. Women

ix. Youth, veterans

x. Overseas workers

xi. Professionals
b. Lacking in well-defined political constituencies

‣ These include professionals, the elderly, women, and the youth.

‣ The majority of the members of sectoral parties or organizations that represent the "marginalized and
underrepresented" must belong to the "marginalized and underrepresented" sector they represent. Similarly, a
majority of the members of sectoral parties or organizations that lack "well-defined political constituencies" must
belong to the sector they represent.

‣ NOTE — The common denominator between sectoral and non-sectoral parties is that they cannot expect to win in
legislative district elections but they can garner, in nationwide elections, at least the same number of votes that winning
candidates can garner in legislative district elections. The party-list system will be the entry point to membership in the
House of Representatives for both these non-traditional parties that could not compete in legislative district elections.
‣ Who are disqualified to join the party-list system?
‣ The COMELEC may, motu propio or upon verified complaint of any interested party, refuse or cancel, after due notice
and hearing their registration, based on any of the following grounds —

1. It is a religious sect or denomination, organization or association, organized for religious purposes;

2. It advocates violence or unlawful means to seek its goal;

3. It is a foreign party or organization;

4. It is receiving support from any foreign government, foreign political party, foundation, organization, whether
directly or through any of its officers or members or indirectly through third parties for partisan election purposes;

5. It violates or fails to comply with laws, rules or regulations relating to elections;

6. It declares untruthful statements in its petition;

7. It has ceased to exist for at least one (1) year; or

8. It fails to participate in the last two (2) preceding elections or fails to obtain at least two per centum (2%) of the
votes cast under the party-list system in the two (2) preceding elections for the constituency in which it has
registered. (Sec. 6, RA 7941)

QUALIFICATIONS OF CANDIDATES FOR THE PARTY-LIST SYSTEM


‣ What are the rules for the nominees/candidates of national, regional or sectoral parties or organization?
1. THEY MUST BE BONA-FIDE MEMBERS OF THE PARTY OR ORGANIZATION (ATONG PAGLAUM VS COMELEC 2013)
a. Nominees of national and regional parties or organizations — must be bona-fide members of such parties or
organizations.

b. Nominees of sectoral parties or organizations — those that represent the "marginalized and underrepresented," or
that represent those who lack "well-defined political constituencies," either must belong to their respective
sectors, or must have a track record of advocacy for their respective sectors.

2. THEY MUST POSSESS THE FOLLOWING QUALIFICATIONS —


a. Natural-born citizen of the Philippines

b. Registered voter

c. Resident of the Philippines for a period of not less than one (1)year immediately preceding the day of the election
d. Able to read and write
e. Bona fide member of the party or organization which he seeks to represent for at least ninety (90) days preceding
the day of the election, and is at least twenty-five (25) years of age on the day of the election.

‣ In case of a nominee of the youth sector, he must at least be twenty-five (25) but not more than thirty (30) years
of age on the day of the election.

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‣ What if the youth sectoral representative attains the age of 30 during his term?
‣ He can continue in office until the expiration of his term.

3. THEY MUST BE IN THE “LIST” OF NOMINEES SUBMITTED BY THE PARTICULAR PARTY OR ORGANIZATION, SUBJECT TO THE
FOLLOWING RULES (SEC. 8, RA 7941) —

a. A person may be nominated in one (1) list only.

b. Only persons who have given their consent in writing may be named in the list.

c. The list shall not include any candidate for any elective office or a person who has lost his bid for an elective office
in the immediately preceding election.

d. No change of names or alteration of the order of nominees shall be allowed after the same shall have been
submitted to the COMELEC except in cases where the nominee dies, or withdraws in writing his nomination,
becomes incapacitated in which case the name of the substitute nominee shall be placed last in the list.

e. Incumbent sectoral representatives in the House of Representatives who are nominated in the party-list system
shall not be considered resigned.

‣ Are religious leaders disqualified from being party-list representatives?


‣ NO. The prohibition is against representation of religious sectors but no against religious leaders become
representatives.

ELECTION OF PARTY-LIST REPRESENTATIVES


‣ How are party-list representatives elected?
‣ They are elected at large (nationally) through the party-list system

‣ Under the party-list system, the qualified and registered national, regional and sectoral parties or organisations submit
a list of candidates arranged in the order priority. During the congressional elections, such parties or organisations are
voted for at large, and the number of seats a party or organization will get, out of the twenty percent allocated for
party list representatives, will depend on the number of votes garnered nationwide.

‣ The total number of party-list representatives is 20% of the total number of the members of the House of
Representatives including those under the party-list.

‣ How are the congressional seats allocated to the parties, organisations or coalitions ?
‣ Sec. 11, RA 7941 in relation to BANAT vs COMELEC (this case modified the previous rule under Veterans Federation
Party vs COMELEC 2000)

‣ Observe the following procedures —

1. RANKING OF PARTIES ACCORDING TO VOTES GARNERED


‣ The parties, organizations, and coalitions shall be ranked from the highest to the lowest based on the number of
votes they garnered during the elections.
2. DETERMINE THE TOTAL NUMBER OF PARTY-LIST SEATS
‣ This is 20% of the total number of the members of the House of Representatives including those under the
party-list. Thus, there is automatically one party-list seat for every four existing legislative districts.

‣ To get this, divide the total number of district representatives by .80 and multiply this by 20%
‣ This 20% rule is mandatory and must be filled up. It is not a ceiling.

3. OBSERVE THE 3-SEAT LIMIT


‣ Each party, organization, or coalition shall be entitled to not more than three (3) seats.
‣ The purpose is to prevent any party from dominating the party-list elections.

‣ The three-seat cap is constitutional. The three-seat cap is intended by the Legislature to prevent any party from
dominating the party-list system.

‣ There is no violation of the Constitution because the 1987 Constitution does not require absolute
proportionality for the party-list system. The well-settled rule is that courts will not question the wisdom of the
Legislature as long as it is not violative of the Constitution.

4. 1ST ROUND — DISTRIBUTE THE “GUARANTEED” SEATS TO THOSE PARTIES GETTING AT LEAST 2% OF THE TOTAL NUMBER
OF VOTES

‣ To get the percentage, divide the total number of votes of the respective party by the total number of votes for
all parties.

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‣ Those garnering 2% of the total votes cast in the party-list elections guarantees a party-list organization one
seat.

‣ The guaranteed seats shall be distributed in a first round of seat allocation to parties receiving at least two
percent of the total party-list votes.

5. 2ND ROUND — DISTRIBUTE THE “REMAINING” SEATS TO PARTIES ACCORDING TO THE RANKING
‣ The additional seats, that is, the remaining seats after allocation of the guaranteed seats, shall be distributed to
the party-list organizations including those that received less than two percent of the total votes.

‣ In computing the additional seats, the “guaranteed seats” shall no longer be included because they have
already been allocated, at one seat each, to every two-percenter.

‣ The remaining available seats for allocation as "additional seats" are the maximum seats reserved under the
Party List System less the guaranteed seats.

‣ Fractional seats are disregarded in the absence of a provision in R.A. No. 7941 allowing for a rounding off of
fractional seats.

‣ How do you compute and allocate the “remaining/additional seats”?


‣ Observe these two steps in the second round of seat allocation —

1. First, the percentage is multiplied by the remaining available seats which is the difference between the
maximum seats reserved under the Party-List System and the guaranteed seats of the two-percenters.
The whole integer of the product of the percentage and of the remaining available seats corresponds to
a party’s share in the remaining available seats. This is applying the three-seat cap.

2. Second, assign one party-list seat to each of the parties next in rank until ALL available seats are
completely distributed.
‣ NOTE — The continued operation of the 2% threshold (to qualify for a seat and as it applies to the
allocation of the additional seats) is now unconstitutional because this threshold mathematically and
physically prevents the filling up of the available party-list seats.
‣ SEE — Sec. 11(b), RA 7941 — The parties, organizations, and coalitions receiving at least two percent
(2%) of the total votes cast for the party-list system shall be entitled to one seat each, provided those
garnering more than two percent (2%) of the votes shall be entitled to additional seats in proportion to their
total number of votes
‣ SEE — BANAT vs COMELEC (2009)
‣ In computing the allocation of additional seats, the continued operation of the two percent threshold for
the distribution of the additional seats as found in the second clause of Section 11(b) of R.A. No. 7941 is
unconstitutional. This Court finds that the two percent threshold makes it mathematically impossible to
achieve the maximum number of available party list seats when the number of available party list seats
exceeds 50.

‣ The continued operation of the two percent threshold in the distribution of the additional seats frustrates
the attainment of the permissive ceiling that 20% of the members of the House of Representatives shall
consist of party-list representatives. The two percent threshold presents an unwarranted obstacle to the
full implementation of Section 5(2), Article VI of the Constitution and prevents the attainment of "the
broadest possible representation of party, sectoral or group interests in the House of Representatives

‣ What is the effect of change of affiliation of party-list representatives?


‣ Any elected party-list representative who changes his political party or sectoral affiliation during his term of office
shall forfeit his seat; provided that if he changes his political party or sectoral affiliation within 6 months before an
election, he shall not be eligible for nomination as party- list representative under his new party or organization.

QUALIFICATIONS OF MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

Section 6. No person shall be a Member of the House of Representatives unless he is a natural-born citizen of the
Philippines and, on the day of the election, is at least twenty-five years of age, able to read and write, and, except the
party-list representatives, a registered voter in the district in which he shall be elected, and a resident thereof for a period
of not less than one year immediately preceding the day of the election.

1. Natural-born citizen of the Philippines

2. At least twenty-five years of age on the day of the election

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3. Able to read and write

4. A registered voter in the district in which he shall be elected (except the party-list representatives)

5. A resident thereof for a period of not less than one year immediately preceding the day of the election

MEANING OF “RESIDENCE”
‣ RULE — GENERALLY, UNDER CIVIL LAW, “RESIDENCE” IS DIFFERENTIATED FROM “DOMICILE”. HOWEVER, UNDER ELECTION
LAW, “RESIDENCE” MEANS “DOMICILE”.
‣ For political purposes the concepts of residence and domicile are dictated by the peculiar criteria of political laws. As
these concepts have evolved in our election law, what has clearly and unequivocally emerged is the fact that
residence for election purposes is used synonymously with domicile. (Marcos vs COMELEC 1995)

‣ What is the difference between residence and domicile?


‣ A person may have multiple residences but he can only have one domicile. He may have a residence in one place and
a domicile in another. Residence is not domicile, but domicile is residence coupled with the intention to remain for an
unlimited time. His place of residence is generally his place of domicile, but it is not by any means necessarily so since
no length of residence without intention of remaining will constitute domicile. (Marcos vs COMELEC 1995)

‣ Residence — It is used to indicate a place of abode, whether permanent or temporary. In its ordinary conception,
implies the factual relationship of an individual to a certain place. It is the physical presence of a person in a given
area, community or country.

‣ Domicile — denotes a fixed permanent residence to which, when absent, one has the intention of returning. It means
an individual's "permanent home", "a place to which, whenever absent for business or for pleasure, one intends to
return, and depends on facts and circumstances in the sense that they disclose intent."

1. Domicile of Origin
‣ Domicile at birth, following that of the parents

2. Domicile of Choice
‣ Requisites for change of domicile —

a. Residence or bodily presence in the new locality

b. Intention to remain there permanently

c. Intention to abandon the old domicile


‣ A person may be absent for a long period of time in his domicile and still preserve such status, as long as there
is the intention to return. (Faypon vs Quirico 1954)
‣ To establish a new domicile of choice, personal presence in the place but be coupled with conduct indicative
of that intention. It requires a declared and probable intent to make it one’s fixed and permanent place of
abode, one’s home. To successfully effect a change of domicile, one must demonstrate an actual removal or an
actual change of domicile; a bona fide intention of abandoning the former place of residence and establishing a
new one and definite acts which correspond with the purpose. There must basically be animus manendi
(intention to remain in a new locality) coupled with animus non revertendi (intention not to return to the old
domicile). (Domino vs COMELEC 1999)
‣ What is the rationale for the residence requirement?
‣ It is to exclude a stranger or newcomer, unacquainted with the conditions and needs of a community and not
identified with the latter, from an elective office to serve that community. (Gallego vs Vera 1941)

TERM OF MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

Section 7. The Members of the House of Representatives shall be elected for a term of three years which shall begin,
unless otherwise provided by law, at noon on the thirtieth day of June next following their election. No Member of the
House of Representatives shall serve for more than three consecutive terms. Voluntary renunciation of the office for any
length of time shall not be considered as an interruption in the continuity of his service for the full term for which he was
elected.

‣ What is the term of office of a member of HREP?


‣ 3 years

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‣ When does it commence?
‣ Noon of June 30 following the election, unless otherwise provided by law

‣ Is there a limitation of terms?


‣ There is no limit on the total number of terms a member of the HREP may serve. The limit is on the consecutive terms
a member may serve. He may NOT serve for more than 3 consecutive terms. The terms must not be successive.

‣ What if a member of HREP voluntarily renounces his office? Is such term counted for purposes of the limitation?
‣ YES. Voluntary renunciation of the office for any length of time shall not be considered as an interruption in the
continuity of his service for the full term for which he was elected.

‣ Is “term” and “tenure” the same?


‣ NO. Term is the period during which an official is entitled to hold office. Tenure is the period during which he actually
holds office. Tenure can be shortened. Term is changed only by constitutional amendment. (Dimaporo vs Mitra 1991)
‣ Does the filing of a certificate of candidacy for a national elective position terminate the tenure of a member of
the HREP?
‣ NO. The mere fact of having filed for candidacy to a position different from what he is holding does not terminate his
tenure. (Farinas vs Executive Secretary 2003)

DAY OF ELECTION OF MEMBERS OF CONGRESS

Section 8. Unless otherwise provided by law, the regular election of the Senators and the Members of the House of
Representatives shall be held on the second Monday of May.

VACANCIES IN CONGRESS

Section 9. In case of vacancy in the Senate or in the House of Representatives, a special election may be called to fill
such vacancy in the manner prescribed by law, but the Senator or Member of the House of Representatives thus elected
shall serve only for the unexpired term.

‣ How are vacancies in Congress addressed?


‣ A special election may be called to fill such vacancy in the manner prescribed by law

‣ BUT — the Senator or Member of the House of Representatives thus elected shall serve only for the unexpired term.

‣ Is a special election to fill the vacancy mandatory?


‣ NO. The matter is left to the discretion of Congress — “in the manner prescribed by law”

COMPENSATION OF MEMBERS OF CONGRESS

Section 10. The salaries of Senators and Members of the House of Representatives shall be determined by law. No
increase in said compensation shall take effect until after the expiration of the full term of all the Members of the Senate
and the House of Representatives approving such increase.

‣ How are salaries of members of Congress determined?


‣ By law.

‣ Can the members of Congress increase their own salaries?


‣ NO. If a law providing for increase in compensation is passed, it takes effect only until after the expiration of the full
term of ALL the Members of the Senate and the House of Representatives approving such increase.

‣ The rationale is to place a legal bar to the legislator’s yielding to the natural temptation to increase their salaries.
(Philconsa vs Mathay 1966)

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‣ What if there are new members who were elected by special election to fill vacancies, will they be benefited by an
increase?
‣ BERNAS — NO. Because they would be serving within the term of the members who approved the increase

‣ What if there are new members who were not part of the Congress which passed the increase (because of the
staggering of terms, will they be benefited by an increase?
‣ Are allowances and allowable expenses (for office, travel, etc.) covered by the prohibition on increases?
‣ NO. Such do not form part of the salary or compensation. There is no legal limit on such amount which may be
appropriated. The only limit is moral.

‣ NOTE — The books of Congress are audited by the Commission on Audit which shall publish annually an itemized list
of amounts paid and expenses incurred for each Member. (Sec. 20)
‣ Are retirement and vacation gratuities covered by the prohibition?
‣ SEE — Philconsa vs Gimenez

PARLIAMENTARY PRIVILEGE

Section 11. A Senator or Member of the House of Representatives shall, in all offenses punishable by not more than six
years imprisonment, be privileged from arrest while the Congress is in session. No Member shall be questioned nor be
held liable in any other place for any speech or debate in the Congress or in any committee thereof.

PARLIAMENTARY/CONGRESSIONAL PRIVILEGES
1. PARLIAMENTARY PRIVILEGE FROM ARREST —
‣ RULE — A Senator or Member of the House of Representatives shall, in all offenses punishable by not more
than six years imprisonment, be privileged from arrest while the Congress is in session.
‣ Requisites for the privilege to be invoked —

a. Congress must be in session


‣ This covers both regular and special sessions, whether or not the legislator is actually attending a session.

‣ This does not mean actual session, but rather the period when Congress is in session and NOT in recess.

b. The offense charged must not be penalized by more than six years imprisonment
‣ Thus, it does not cover those serious crimes such as plunder.

‣ History of the Rule — the 1987 privilege from arrest differs from that under the 1935 Constitution. The latter only
pertains to privilege against civil arrest, not criminal. (Martinez vs Morfe 1972)
‣ Rationale — The purpose of the privilege is to protect the legislator against harassment which will keep him away from
legislative sessions. Thus, there is no point in extending the privilege to the period when Congress is not in session.
2. PARLIAMENTARY PRIVILEGE OF SPEECH
‣ RULE — No Member shall be questioned nor be held liable in any other place for any speech or debate in the
Congress or in any committee thereof.
‣ Scope of the privilege — It pertains to utterances made in the performance of official legislative functions

‣ Said expression refers to utterances made by Congressmen in the performance of their official functions, such as
speeches delivered, statements made, or votes cast in the halls of Congress, while the same is in session, as well
as bills introduced in Congress, whether the same is in session or not, and other acts performed by Congressmen,
either in Congress or outside the premises housing its offices, in the official discharge of their duties as members
of Congress and of Congressional Committees duly authorized to perform its functions as such, at the time of the
performance of the acts in question. (Jimenez vs Cabangbang 1966)

‣ It is essential that the utterance must constitute “legislative action”, that is, it must be part of the deliberative and
communicative process by which legislators participate in committee or congressional proceedings in the
consideration of proposed legislation or of other matters which the Constitution has place within the jurisdiction of
Congress. (Gravel vs US 1972)
‣ NOTE — It is NOT essential that the Congress be in session

‣ Effect of the privilege — It operates as an absolute protection against suits for libel. However, it is a protection only
against forums other than the Congress itself. It does NOT protect him from the disciplinary authority of Congress.

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‣ It is a guarantee of immunity from answerability before an outside forum but not from answerability from the
disciplinary authority of Congress itself.

‣ RATIONALE — It is intended to leave the legislator unimpeded in the performance of his duties and free from fear of
harassment from the outside.

‣ Does the privilege of speech extend to agents of members of Congress?


‣ YES. Provided that the agency consists precisely in assisting the legislator in the performance of legislative action.
(Gravel vs US 1972)

CONGRESSIONAL DISCLOSURE OF FINANCIAL AND BUSINESS INTERESTS

Section 12. All Members of the Senate and the House of Representatives shall, upon assumption of office, make a full
disclosure of their financial and business interests. They shall notify the House concerned of a potential conflict of
interest that may arise from the filing of a proposed legislation of which they are authors.

‣ What are the rules to observe pertaining to conflict of interests in Congress?


1. All Members of Congress must make a full disclosure of their financial and business interests upon assumption of
office

2. They must notify the House concerned of a potential conflict of interest that may arise from the filing of a
proposed legislation of which they are authors

‣ NOTE — the rule does not prevent him from filing the proposed legislation. It merely enables the House to examine
the arguments he might present with a sharper eye and in the context of his personal interest. The advance
disclosure would create a presumption in favour of the legislator concerned should he later be charged by his
colleagues with conflict of interests.

DISQUALIFICATIONS AND PROHIBITIONS ON MEMBERS OF CONGRESS

Section 13. No Senator or Member of the House of Representatives may hold any other office or employment in the
Government, or any subdivision, agency, or instrumentality thereof, including government-owned or controlled
corporations or their subsidiaries, during his term without forfeiting his seat. Neither shall he be appointed to any office
which may have been created or the emoluments thereof increased during the term for which he was elected.

Section 14. No Senator or Member of the House of Representatives may personally appear as counsel before any court of
justice or before the Electoral Tribunals, or quasi-judicial and other administrative bodies. Neither shall he, directly or
indirectly, be interested financially in any contract with, or in any franchise or special privilege granted by the
Government, or any subdivision, agency, or instrumentality thereof, including any government-owned or controlled
corporation, or its subsidiary, during his term of office. He shall not intervene in any matter before any office of the
Government for his pecuniary benefit or where he may be called upon to act on account of his office.

ARTICLE 11 — ACCOUNTABILITY OF PUBLIC OFFICERS


Section 16. No loan, guaranty, or other form of financial accommodation for any business purpose may be granted,
directly or indirectly, by any government-owned or controlled bank or financial institution to the President, the Vice-
President, the Members of the Cabinet, the Congress, the Supreme Court, and the Constitutional Commissions, the
Ombudsman, or to any firm or entity in which they have controlling interest, during their tenure.

‣ What are the disqualification and prohibitions imposed on Members of Congress during their tenure?
‣ RULE — THEY ARE PROHIBITED FROM —
1. Holding any other office or employment in the Government, or any subdivision, agency, or instrumentality
thereof, including government-owned or controlled corporations or their subsidiaries (Incompatible office)
‣ But they can hold offices in private corporations, even those exercising public functions such as the Philippine
Red Cross. (Liban vs Gordon 2009)
‣ What is the consequence if a member of Congress violates this prohibition?

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‣ He forfeits his seat. Thus, he can still accept any other government position the effect is he is deemed to
have voluntarily resigned as a member of Congress.

‣ Such as — Rep. Mark Villar accepting his appointment as the Secretary of Public Works and Highways
‣ Are there appointments to which he is prohibited during his term even if he forfeits his seat?
‣ YES. He cannot accept appointment to any office which may have been created or the emoluments thereof
increased during the term for which he was elected. This is the case, even if he had already resigned when
the office was created or the emolument was increased. (Forbidden office)

‣ What if a member of Congress runs for another elective position (such as Senator Grace Poe running
for President), are they ipso facto resigned?
‣ NO. In fact, if they lose, they still keep their seats in Congress. When an elective official runs for another
office other than the one he is currently holding, he is no longer ipso facto resigned. (RA 9006 Fair Election
Act; Farinas vs Exec. Secretary)
‣ NOTE — The rule is different for appointive officials, they must resign before they may run for an elective
office.

2. Personally appearing as counsel before any —


a. Court of justice
b. Electoral Tribunals
c. Quasi-judicial and administrative bodies
‣ NOTE — What is merely prohibited is the “physical personal appearance” of the legislator before these bodies,
NOT a blanket prohibition on the practice of law or being a counsel to a case. Further, he is only prohibited
from appearing as counsel, NOT as a genuine party to the case.

‣ RATIONALE — Legislators are influential people whether they lift a finger or not. There is always that fear in the
main of the member of the collegiate court that sometime in the future he may need the help of the legislative
member appearing before him, although unsolicited.

‣ What if the member of Congress is a lawyer and part of a law firm, are the other members of the law
firm covered by this prohibition?
‣ BERNAS — NO. The prohibition is personal. The personality of a law partnership is different from that of its
partners.

3. Being interested financially in any contract with, or in any franchise or special privilege granted by the
Government, or any subdivision, agency, or instrumentality thereof, including any government-owned or
controlled corporation, or its subsidiary.
‣ This covers “direct or indirect” financial interest.

‣ Thus, they cannot be members of the board of corporations with contract with the government.. Such would at
least constitute indirect financial interest.

4. Intervening in any matter before any office of the Government for their —
a. Pecuniary benefit, or

b. Where they may be called upon to act on account of his office.

REGULAR AND SPECIAL SESSIONS OF CONGRESS

Section 15. The Congress shall convene once every year on the fourth Monday of July for its regular session, unless a
different date is fixed by law, and shall continue to be in session for
such number of days as it may determine until thirty days before the opening of its next regular session, exclusive of
Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays. The President may call a special session at any time.

KINDS OF CONGRESSIONAL SESSIONS


1. REGULAR SESSION
‣ Congress is required to convene every year and shall continue to be in session, for such number of days as it may
determine, until it ends.

‣ Start of session — Generally it starts on the fourth Monday of July, unless a different date is fixed by law.

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‣ End of session — Thirty days before the opening of its next regular session, exclusive of Saturdays, Sundays, and
legal holidays.

2. SPECIAL SESSION
‣ This is called by the President at any time, particularly when Congress is not in session, meaning it is in recess.

3. JOINT SESSION
a. Voting separately —
i. Choosing the President (Sec. 4, Art. 7)
ii. Determine President’s disability (Sec. 11, Art. 7)
iii. Confirming nomination of the Vice President (Sec. 9, Art. 7)
iv. Declaring the existence of a state of war (Sec. 23, Art. 6)
v. Proposing constitutional amendments (Sec. 1, Art. 17)
b. Voting jointly — To revoke or extend proclamation suspending the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus or placing
the Philippines under martial law (Sec. 18, Art. 7)

RULES FOR THE CONDUCT OF BUSINESS IN CONGRESS

Section 16.
(1) The Senate shall elect its President and the House of Representatives, its Speaker, by a majority vote of all its
respective Members. Each House shall choose such other officers as it may deem necessary.
(2) A majority of each House shall constitute a quorum to do business, but a smaller number may adjourn from day to day
and may compel the attendance of absent Members in such manner, and under such penalties, as such House may
provide.
(3) Each House may determine the rules of its proceedings, punish its Members for disorderly behavior, and, with the
concurrence of two-thirds of all its Members, suspend or expel a Member. A penalty of suspension, when imposed,
shall not exceed sixty days.
(4) Each House shall keep a Journal of its proceedings, and from time to time publish the same, excepting such parts as
may, in its judgment, affect national security; and the yeas and nays on any question shall, at the request of one-fifth
of the Members present, be entered in the Journal. Each House shall also keep a Record of its proceedings.
(5) Neither House during the sessions of the Congress shall, without the consent of the other, adjourn for more than three
days, nor to any other place than that in which the two Houses shall be sitting.

RULES PERTAINING TO THE CONDUCT OF BUSINESS OF CONGRESS


1. ELECTION OF OFFICERS— THE SENATE AND HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES MUST ELECT ITS OWN RESPECTIVE LEADER BY
MAJORITY VOTE.

‣ Senate must elect a Senate President (Currently, it is Senator Koko Pimentel)

‣ The House of Representatives must elect a Speaker of the House (Currently, it is Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez)
‣ Congress becomes properly organized once the officers have been chosen

‣ Are these the only officers required to be elected?


‣ YES. However, each respective house may choose such other officers as it may deem necessary.

‣ Such as —
‣ Senate — Senate President Pro Tempore, Senate Majority leader, Senate Minority leader, heads of the
committees.
‣ HREP — Deputy house speakers, Majority Floor leader, Minority Floor leader, heads of the committees.
‣ Can the election of these leaders subject to judicial review (challenged in courts)?
‣ Only the election of Senate President and Speaker of the House may be challenged as the Constitution prescribes
the manner of electing them — by majority vote. It is deemed a “constitutional question”.(Santiago vs Guingona
1998)

‣ The Constitution is explicit on the manner of electing a Senate President and Speaker of the House but silent on
the manner of selecting the other officers. Thus, the election of other leaders and officers lies solely within the
prerogative of each respective House. It is deemed a “political question”. (Santiago vs Guingona 1998)

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‣ What is a Political Question?
‣ It refers to those questions which, under the Constitution, are to be decided by the people in their sovereign
capacity, or in regard to which full discretionary authority has been delegated to the legislative or executive branch
of the government. It is concerned with issues dependent upon the wisdom, not the legality, of a particular
measure. (Tañada v. Cueno 1957)
‣ SEE — Vinuya vs Romulo G.R. No. 162230 April 28, 2010
‣ Prominent on the surface of any case held to involve a political question is found a textually demonstrable
constitutional commitment of the issue to a coordinate political department or a lack of judicially discoverable
and manageable standards for resolving it, or the impossibility of deciding without an initial policy
determination of a kind clearly for non-judicial discretion; or the impossibility of a court's undertaking
independent resolution without expressing lack of the respect due coordinate branches of government; or an
unusual need for unquestioning adherence to a political decision already made; or the potentiality of
embarrassment from multifarious pronouncements by various departments on question.

‣ Certain types of cases often have been found to present political questions. One such category involves
questions of foreign relations. It is well-established that "the conduct of the foreign relations of our government
is committed by the Constitution to the executive and legislative--'the political'--departments of the
government, and the propriety of what may be done in the exercise of this political power is not subject to
judicial inquiry or decision.”
‣ NOTE — These are not justiciable controversies subject of judicial review as based on the principle of separation
of powers

2. QUORUM — A QUORUM IS REQUIRED TO DO BUSINESS, BUT A SMALLER NUMBER MAY ADJOURN FROM DAY TO DAY.
‣ What is a quorum?
‣ A quorum is the majority of the total members of each respective house.

‣ It is based on the proportion between those physically present and the total membership of the body. However,
it has been recognized that if the members are beyond the coercive power of the House concerned (such as if
he is abroad), then the basis of the quorum may be reduced. (See Avelino vs Cuenco 1949)

‣ Can absent members be compelled to attend?


‣ YES. Those present may compel the attendance of absent members so as to constitute a quorum, in such manner,
and under such penalties, as such House may provide.

3. ESTABLISHMENT OF RULES OF PROCEEDINGS AND DISCIPLINE


‣ RULE — Each House may —
a. Determine the rules of its proceedings

b. Punish its Members for disorderly behavior, and

c. Suspend or expel a Member for a maximum of 60 days (with the concurrence of two-thirds of all its Members)

‣ May the courts intervene in the implementation of the rules of either House of Congress?
‣ NO. On matters affecting only internal operation of the legislature, the legislature, the legislature’s formulation and
implementation of its rules is beyond the reach of courts. When, however, the legislative rule affects private rights,
the courts cannot altegogth

‣ Is the disciplinary action taken by Congress against a member subject to judicial review?
‣ NO. Because each House is the sole judge of what disorderly behaviour is. (Osmena vs Pendatun 1960)
‣ Is this power to suspend different from that in the Anti Graft and Corrupt Practices Act?
‣ YES. The suspension contemplated in the Constitution is different from the suspension prescribed in the Anti-
Graft and Corrupt Practices Act (RA 3019). The latter is not a penalty but a preliminary preventive measure and is
not imposed upon the petitioner for misbehavior as a member of Congress (Paredes v. Sandiganbayan 1995). The
order of suspension provided in RA 3019 is distinct from the power of Congress to discipline its own ranks. Neither
does the order of suspension encroach upon the power of Congress. The doctrine of separation of powers, by
itself, is not deemed to have effectively excluded the members of Congress from RA 3019 or its sanctions.
(Defensor-Santiago v. Sandiganbayan 2001)

4. JOURNAL AND RECORD OF PROCEEDINGS — EACH HOUSE SHALL KEEP A JOURNAL OF ITS PROCEEDINGS, AND FROM TIME TO
TIME PUBLISH THE SAME. EACH HOUSE SHALL ALSO KEEP A RECORD OF ITS PROCEEDINGS.

‣ The publication of journals is based on the imperatives of public policy for regarding the Journals as public memorials
of the most permanent character. They should be public, because all are required to conform to them; they should be
permanent, that rights acquired today upon the faith of what has been declared to be law shall not be destroyed

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tomorrow, or at some remote period of time, by facts resting only in the memory of individuals. (Arroyo vs De Venecia
1997)

‣ Rationale —

a. To insure publicity to the proceedings of the legislature

b. Provide proof of what actually transpired

‣ Read this in relation to— Art. 3, Section 7. The right of the people to information on matters of public concern shall be
recognized. Access to official records, and to documents and papers pertaining to official acts, transactions, or
decisions, as well as to government research data used as basis for policy development, shall be afforded the citizen,
subject to such limitations as may be provided by law.

‣ What matters are required (under the Constitution) x`to be entered into the journal?
a. Yeas and nays on third and final reading of a bill

b. Veto message of the President

c. Yeas and nays on the repassing of a bill vetoed by the President

d. Yeas and nays on any question at the request of 1/5 of members present.

‣ What matters are kept out of the journal?


‣ Congress may except some parts which, in its judgment, affect national security

‣ What if evidentiary questions arise on what actually transpired in Congress and the entries in the journal
conflict with extraneous evidence such as testimony of witness or newspaper reports?
‣ The journal prevails as it is conclusive on courts. It is well settled in the United States that such journals may be
noticed by the courts in determining the question whether a particular bill became a law or not. The result is that
the law and the adjudicated cases make it our duty to take judicial notice of the legislative journals of the special
session of the Philippine Legislature (United States vs Pons 1916)
‣ The Journal is regarded as conclusive with respect to matters that are required by the Constitution to be recorded
therein. With respect to other matters, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, the Journals have also been
accorded conclusive effect. (Arroyo vs De Venecia 1997)
‣ What is the “enrolled bill” doctrine?
‣ The signing of a bill by the Speaker of the House and the Senate President and the certification of secretaries of
both house that such bill was passed are conclusive as to its due enactment.

‣ An enrolled bill is one duly introduced and finally passed by both Houses, authenticated by the proper officers of
each, and approved by the President. The enrolled bill is conclusive upon the courts as regards the tenor of the
measure passed by Congress and approved by the President. Court is bound under the doctrine of separation of
powers by the contents of a duly authenticated measure of the legislature. (Arroyo v. De Venecia 1997)

‣ What if the journal conflicts with the enrolled bill on the contents of the law or discrepancies?
‣ The enrolled bill prevails. It is the official copy of approved legislation and bears the certification of the presiding
officer of the legislative body. The respect due to a co-equal department requires the courts to accept the
certification of the presiding officer of the legislative body. The respect due to coequal department requires the
courts to accept the certification of the presiding officer as conclusive assurance that the bill so certified is
authentic. If a mistake was made in the printing of the bill before it was certified by Congress and approved by the
President, the remedy is amendment or corrective legislation, not a judicial decree. (Casco Philippine Chemical Co.
vs Gimenez 1963)
‣ EXCEPT — the journal prevails in the following cases —

a. As to matters which, under the Constitution, must be entered in the Journal

b. When the presiding officer repudiates his signature in the enrolled bill.

‣ As the enrolled bill doctrine is based mainly on the respect due to a coequal department, when such
department itself repudiates the enrolled bill, then the journal must be accepted as conclusive. (Astorga
vs Villegas 1974)

5. ADJOURNMENT
‣ Neither House during the sessions of the Congress shall, without the consent of the other, adjourn for more than three
days, nor to any other place than that in which the two Houses shall be sitting.

CONGRESSIONAL ELECTORAL TRIBUNALS

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Section 17. The Senate and the House of Representatives shall each have an Electoral Tribunal which shall be the sole
judge of all contests relating to the election, returns, and qualifications of their respective Members. Each Electoral
Tribunal shall be composed of nine Members, three of whom shall be Justices of the Supreme Court to be designated by
the Chief Justice, and the remaining six shall be Members of the Senate or the House of Representatives, as the case
may be, who shall be chosen on the basis of proportional representation from the political parties and the parties or
organizations registered under the party-list system represented therein. The senior Justice in the Electoral Tribunal shall
be its Chairman.

Section 19. The Electoral Tribunals and the Commission on Appointments shall be constituted within thirty days after the
Senate and the House of Representatives shall have been organized with the election of the President and the Speaker.

CONGRESSIONAL TRIBUNALS
1. Senate Electoral Tribunal (SET)

2. House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal (HRET)

COMPOSITION OF THE CONGRESSIONAL ELECTORAL TRIBUNALS


‣ RULE— Each Electoral Tribunal shall be composed of nine Members consisting of —
1. Three Justices of the Supreme Court to be designated by the Chief Justice, and

2. Six members of the Senate or the House of Representatives, as the case may be

‣ Who is the chairman of each Electoral Tribunal?


‣ The most senior Justice in the respective Electoral Tribunal

‣ How are the members of the SET and HRET chosen?


‣ They are chosen on the basis of proportional representation from the political parties and the parties or organizations
registered under the party-list system represented therein.

‣ The Constitution gives to the two Houses of Congress the primary jurisdiction over who should sit in the Commission
on Appointments. This includes determination of party affiliation and number of party members for the purpose of
determining proportional representation. (Drilon vs Speaker 2009)
‣ When should the Electoral Tribunals be constituted?
‣ Within thirty days after the Senate and the House of Representatives shall have been organized with the election of
the President and the Speaker.
‣ What major difference is there in the composition of the Electoral Tribunals under the 1935 Constitution and of
those under the 1987 Constitution?
‣ Under the 1935 Constitution, only the two major political parties had representation and they had it equally between
them. Under the new Constitution, all political parties are given proportional representation.
‣ The Senator-members of the Electoral Tribunal are sought to be disqualified on the ground that they, together
with all the other Senators, are respondents in the contest filed by the opposition (this was because in . May the
Electoral Tribunal function as such when all of the Senator-members in it have been disqualified, either voluntarily
or involuntarily?
‣ NO. Where a situation is created which precludes the substitution of any Senator sitting in the Tribunal by any of his
other colleagues in the Senate without inviting the same objections to the substitute's competence, the proposed
mass disqualification if sanctioned and ordered would leave the Tribunal no alternative but to abandon a duty that no
other court or body can perform but which it cannot lawfully discharge if shorn of the participation of its entire
membership of Senators. They must therefore discharge their function. (Abbas vs SET 1988)

‣ NOTE — in this case of Abbas, and electoral contest was filed against all the 24 senators who were the candidates
and winners of the previous election (this was before the staggering of terms went into effect). Court ruled that the
Senators part of the SET cannot be forced to inhibit, and the remaining justices cannot decide on the case. This is
because it is the intent of the Constitution for Senators to participate in the SET (thus the 2-1 proportioning). In
effect, the Senators were allowed to be their own judge.
‣ May the Supreme Court intervene in the creation of the Electoral Tribunal?
‣ Generally NO. The composition of the seats of Congress in the Electoral Tribunal is for Congress itself to decide.

‣ BUT — The Courts may intervene if there is a politically motivated expulsion of a member of the tribunal from a party
leading to the tribunal’s reorganization in order to prejudice the outcome of an electoral contest.

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‣ SEE — Bondoc vs Pineda (1991)
‣ This case involved a blatant attempt of a political party to manipulate the decision of the Tribunal by manipulating
its membership. On the eve of the promulgation of a decision of the Tribunal against a member of the Laban ng
Demokratikong Pilipino (LDP), the LDP expelled Camasura (voted made a conscience vote, to the prejudice of his
own party) from the party, and therefore as LDP representative in the Tribunal, on the ground of disloyalty.
Camasura, the LDP member of the Electoral Tribunal, had confided to the LDP that he was voting against the
party's candidate. The Supreme Court invalidated the expulsion of Camasura from the Tribunal saying that it was a
clear impairment of the Tribunal's prerogative to be the sole judge of election contests

JURISDICTION AND POWER OF THE ELECTORAL TRIBUNALS


‣ RULE — THE SENATE AND THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES SHALL EACH HAVE AN ELECTORAL TRIBUNAL WHICH SHALL BE
THE SOLE JUDGE OF ALL CONTESTS RELATING TO THE FOLLOWING MATTERS OF THEIR RESPECTIVE MEMBERS —

1. Election

2. Returns

3. Qualifications

‣ What does “sole judge” mean?


‣ When there is an election contest, that is, when a defeated candidate challenges the qualification and claims the seat
of a proclaimed winner, the respective Electoral Tribunal of each House is the sole judge, and neither the Supreme
Court nor each House of Congress nor the Commission on Elections can interfere. (Angara v. Electoral Commission
1936)

‣ Can the congressional electoral tribunals act without an election contest?


‣ NO. In the absence of an election contest, the Electoral Tribunals are without jurisdiction. Thus, the power of each
House to defer the oath-taking of members until final determination of election contests filed against them has been
retained by each House. (Angara v. Electoral Commission 1936)
‣ When does the jurisdiction of the SET and HRET over an election contest commence?
‣ Upon the proclamation of the winners by the COMELEC. There is no conflict of jurisdiction since the powers of
Congress and the COMELEC en banc, on one hand, and the SET, on the other, are exercised on different occasions
and for different purposes. The SET is the sole, judge of all contests relating to the election, returns, and qualifications
of members of the Senate. The jurisdiction of the SET can only be invoked once the winning senatorial candidates
have been proclaimed. Congress and the COMELEC en banc shall determine only the authenticity and due execution
of the certificates of canvass. Congress and the COMELEC en banc shall exercise this power before the proclamation
of the winning senatorial candidates. (BANAT vs COMELEC 2009)
‣ Once a winning candidate has been proclaimed, taken his oath, and assumed office as a Member of the House of
Representatives, COMELEC's jurisdiction over election contests relating to his election, returns, and qualifications
ends, and the HRETs own jurisdiction begins. (Aggabao v. Comelec 2005)
‣ What is the difference between the jurisdiction of the electoral tribunals with that of the COMELEC with regard to
electoral contests?
‣ The policy of the election law is that pre-proclamation controversies should be summarily decided, consistent with the
law's desire that the canvass and proclamation should be delayed as little as possible. The powers of the COMELEC
are essentially executive and administrative in nature and the question of fraud, terrorism and other irregularities in the
conduct of the election should be ventilated in a regular election protest and the Commission on Elections is not the
proper forum for deciding such matters; neither the Constitution nor statute has granted the COMELEC or the board
of canvassers the power, in the canvass of elections returns to look beyond the face thereof `once satisfied of their
authenticity'. We believe that the matters brought up by petitioner should be ventilated before the House Electoral
Tribunal. Unlike in the past, it is no longer the COMELEC but the House Electoral Tribunal which is `the sole judge of
all contests relating to the election, returns, and qualifications' of the members of the House of Representatives.
(Lerias vs HRET 1991)
‣ Who decides whether a party list representative is qualified?
‣ The HRET. But the COMELEC can decide whether a party-list organization is qualified to join the party-list system.
(Abayon u. Comelec 2010)
‣ Can Congress interfere with the decisions of the Electoral Tribunals?
‣ NO. The Tribunals are independent constitutional bodies. (Angara v. Electoral Commission 1936) The Commission on
Appointments is independent of the two Houses of Congress; its employees are not, technically, employees of
Congress. It has the power to promulgate its own rules of proceedings.

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CONTESTING THE DECISION OF THE ELECTORAL TRIBUNALS
‣ RULE — DECISIONS OF THE SET AND HRET MAY BE BROUGHT UP TO THE SUPREME COURT BASED ON ITS EXPANDED OR
EXTRA-ORDINARY JURISDICTION UNDER ART. 8, SEC. 1 OF THE CONSTITUTION

‣ Judicial review of decisions or final resolutions of the HRET is possible only in the exercise of this Court's so-called
"extra-ordinary jurisdiction" – upon a determination that the tribunal's decision or resolution was rendered without or
in excess of its jurisdiction or with grave abuse of discretion or upon a clear showing of such arbitrary and improvident
use by the Tribunal of its power as constitutes a denial of due process of law, or upon a demonstration of a very clear
unmitigated error, manifestly constituting such a grave abuse of discretion that there has to be a remedy for such
abuse. (Robles v. House Electoral Tribunal 1990)

COMMISSION ON APPOINTMENTS

Section 18. There shall be a Commission on Appointments consisting of the President of the Senate, as ex officio
Chairman, twelve Senators, and twelve Members of the House of Representatives, elected by each House on the basis of
proportional representation from the political parties and parties or organizations registered under the party-list system
represented therein. The chairman of the Commission shall not vote, except in case of a tie. The Commission shall act on
all appointments submitted to it within thirty session days of the Congress from their submission. The Commission shall
rule by a majority vote of all the Members.

Section 19. The Electoral Tribunals and the Commission on Appointments shall be constituted within thirty days after the
Senate and the House of Representatives shall have been organized with the election of the President and the Speaker.
The Commission on Appointments shall meet only while the Congress is in session, at the call of its Chairman or a
majority of all its Members, to discharge such powers and functions as are herein conferred upon it.

COMPOSITION OF THE COMMISSION ON APPOINTMENTS


‣ The Commission on Appointments is composed of the following —

1. The Senate President as Chairman (but he cannot vote, except in case of a tie)

2. 12 Senators and

3. 12 Members of the House of Representatives

‣ How are the Senators and Members of the HREP chosen?


‣ According to proportional representation of the parties or organizations registered under the party-list system
represented therein.

‣ NOTE — the membership in the Commission on Appointments must always reflect political alignments in Congress
and must therefore adjust to changes. It is understood that such changes in party affiliation must be permanent and
not merely temporary alliances. (Daza v. Singsong 1989)

‣ When should the Commission on Appointments be constituted?


‣ Within thirty days after the Senate and the House of Representatives shall have been organized with the election of
the President and the Speaker.

‣ Do the seats allotted to the members of Senate and the HREP need to be filled? In other words, must the
composition of the Commission on Appointments, always be 25?
‣ As much as possible, the seats must be filled up; however in cases where it might prejudice the rule on proportional
representation, it is NOT mandatory

‣ SEE — Guingona, Jr. v. Gonzales, 214 SCRA 789 (1992)


‣ This case involved the Senate contingent in the Commission. The senatorial elections of 1992 yielded 15 LDP
senators, 5 NPC, 3 Lakas-NUCD, and 1 LP-PDP-LABAN. On the basis of proportional representation, therefore,
the Commission on Appointments could contain 7.5 LDP, 2.5 NPC, 1.5 Lakas, and .5 LP-PDP-LABAN. The Senate,
however, put in 8 LDP by rounding out 7.5, 2 NPC by ignoring .5, 1 LAKAS also by ignoring .5, and 1 LP-PDP by
rounding out .5 to 1.

‣ The Court ruled that rounding out 7.5 to 8 and .5 to 1 was unconstitutional because it deprived Lakas and NPC of .
5 each. Nor could the holders of .5 each, while belonging to distinct parties, form a unity for purposes of obtaining
a seat in the Commission. Thus, under the Court's arithmetic, the result would be a total of only 11 members. The
Court ruled that a full complement of 12 was NOT mandatory.

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FUNCTION AND POWER OF THE COMMISSION ON APPOINTMENTS
‣ RULE — FOR THE EFFECTIVITY OF THE APPOINTMENT OF CERTAIN KEY OFFICIALS ENUMERATED IN THE CONSTITUTION, THE
CONSENT OF THE COMMISSION ON APPOINTMENTS IS NEEDED

‣ It acts as a legislative check on the appointing authority of the President.

‣ The Commission on Appointments confirms nominations by the President on the following positions —

‣ How does the Commission on Appointments decide?


‣ By majority decision. However, the Chairman votes only to break a tie.

‣ When the the Commission on Appointments convene to discharge such powers and functions conferred upon
it?
‣ Only while the Congress is in session, at the call of its Chairman or a majority of all its Members

‣ NOTE — thus, there may be cases of “recess appointments”

‣ When should the Commission on Appointments act upon appointments submitted to it?
‣ Within thirty session days from submission

RECORDS AND BOOKS OF ACCOUNTS OF CONGRESS

Section 20. The records and books of accounts of the Congress shall be preserved and be open to the public in
accordance with law, and such books shall be audited by the Commission on Audit which shall publish annually an
itemized list of amounts paid to and expenses incurred for each Member.

POWER TO CONDUCT LEGISLATIVE INQUIRY OR HEARINGS

Section 21. The Senate or the House of Representatives or any of its respective committees may conduct inquiries in aid
of legislation in accordance with its duly published rules of procedure. The rights of persons appearing in, or affected by,
such inquiries shall be respected.

POWER OF LEGISLATIVE INQUIRY


‣ RULE — THE SENATE OR THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OR ANY OF ITS RESPECTIVE COMMITTEES MAY CONDUCT INQUIRIES
IN AID OF LEGISLATION

‣ NOTE — any of the committees of either house may also conduct legislative inquiries

‣ Rationale — The power of inquiry, with process to enforce it, is an essential and appropriate auxiliary to the legislative
function. A legislative body cannot legislate wisely or effectively in the absence of information respecting the
conditions which the legislation is intended to affect or change; and where the legislative body does not itself possess
the requisite information, which is not infrequently true, recourse must be had to others who do possess it. (Arnault v.
Nazareno 1950)

POWERS INHERENT IN THE POWER OF INQUIRY


‣ What powers may Congress exercise as part of its powers of inquiry?
1. POWER TO COMPEL THE ATTENDANCE OF WITNESSES (SUBPOENA POWER)
‣ RULE — All persons may be subpoenaed to compel attendance and to give testimony in legislative inquiries
‣ EXCEPT — The following cannot be compelled to attend —

1. President

2. Justice of the Supreme Court

‣ Rationale — Separation of powers and co-equal department courtesy

‣ May a court enjoin the appearance of a person in a legislative inquiry?


‣ NO. A court has no authority to prohibit the Committee from requiring any person to appear and testify before
it. (Senate Blue Ribbon Committee v. Judge Majaducon 2003)

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‣ In this case, the complaint against respondent Flaviano regarding the anomaly in the sale real property was still
pending before the Office of the Ombudsman when the Committee served subpoena on him. In other words,
no court had acquired jurisdiction over the matter. Thus, there was as yet no encroachment by the legislature
into the exclusive jurisdiction of another branch of the government.(Senate Blue Ribbon Committee v. Judge
Majaducon 2003)
‣ What if there is a pending case (civil or criminal) against a person in the courts, may legislative inquiries
still compel the accused or defendants therein?
‣ This was alleged in the Bengzon case, the persons subpoenaed were alleging that to compel attendance in a
legislative inquiry when there are pending cases in court would violate their right to due process. However, the
Supreme Court did not find it necessary to address this point in that case.

2. POWER TO CITE A WITNESS IN CONTEMPT (CONTEMPT POWER)


‣ The power of contempt is inherent in the power of inquiry, it may be exercised to compel a witness to divulge
information

‣ Experience has shown that mere requests for information are frequently unavailing and that information that is
volunteered is not always accurate or complete. Hence, the power of investigation necessarily includes the power
to punish a contumacious witness for contempt. (Arnault v. Nazareno 1950)

‣ When may a witness in an investigation be punished for contempt?


‣ If he refuses to give testimony to a proper question and the absence of a valid justification.

‣ No person can be punished for contumacy as a witness unless his testimony is required in a matter into which
the legislature or any of its committees has jurisdiction to inquire. It is not necessary that every question
propounded to a witness must be material to a proposed legislation. The materiality of the question must be
determined by its direct relation to the subject of the inquiry and not by its indirect relation to any
proposed or possible legislation. The reason is that the necessity or lack of necessity for legislative action
and the form and character of the action itself are determined by the sum total of the information to be
gathered as a result of the investigation, and not by a fraction of such information elicited from a single
question. (Arnault v. Nazareno 1950)
‣ For how long may Congress keep a contumacious witness in detention?
‣ In addition to the above express limitations on the power of Congress is the implicit limitation that the
legislature's power to commit a witness for contempt terminates when the legislative body ceases to exist
upon its final adjournment. This must be so, inasmuch as the basis of the power to impose such a penalty is
the right which the legislature has to self-preservation, and which right is enforceable during the existence of
the legislative body. (Avancena, C.J. concurring in Lopez v. de los Reyes, 1930)
‣ May the inherent power of Congress to punish for contempt be applied, mutatis mutandis, to local
legislative bodies?
‣ NO. The power is recognized as inherent in Congress as a matter of self-preservation of one of the three
independent and coordinate branches of government. It is sui generis and may not be claimed by local
legislative bodies. (Negros Oriental II Electric Cooperative v. Sangguniang Panglunsod 1987)

LIMITATIONS ON LEGISLATIVE INQUIRIES


1. IT MUST BE CONDUCTED FOR THE PURPOSES OF LEGISLATION
‣ The requirement that the investigation be "in aid of legislation" is an essential element for establishing the jurisdiction
of the legislative body. It is, however, a requirement which is not difficult to satisfy because, unlike in the United
States, where legislative power is shared by the United States Congress and the state legislatures, the totality of
legislative power is possessed by Congress and its legislative field is well-nigh unlimited. It would be difficult to define
any limits by which the subject matter of its inquiry can be bounded. (Arnault v. Nazareno 1950)
‣ NOTE — legislative inquiries are almost always upheld as constitutional, Courts usually never interfere with it as a
respect to the separation of powers. Thus, only in cases where there is a clear violation of constitutional rights can the
Courts step in. The proper attitude to take in looking at legislative inquiries is that it is a broad and expansive power of
Congress that must liberally upheld.

‣ What are the matters within the scope of legislative inquiries?


‣ Such inquiries may refer to the implementation or re-examination of any law or in connection with any proposed
legislation or the formulation of future legislation. They may also extend to any and all matters vested by the
Constitution in Congress and/or in the Seante alone. (Bengzon vs Senate Blue Ribbon Committee 1991)
‣ The inquiry, to be within the jurisdiction of the legislative body making it, must be material or necessary to the
exercise of a power in it vested by the Constitution, such as to legislate or to expel a member. (Arnault v. Nazareno
1950)

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‣ What are the questions which may be asked of a witness in a legislative inquiry?
‣ Any question which has a direct relation to the subject of the inquiry and not by its indirect relation to any
proposed or possible legislation. (Arnault v. Nazareno 1950)
‣ What are matters outside the scope of legislative inquiries?
‣ Those matters within the exclusive province of the Executive or Judicial Branches
‣ Broad as it is, the power is not, however, without limitations. Since congress may only investigate into those areas
in which it may potentially legislate or appropriate, it cannot inquire into matters which are within the exclusive
province of one of the other branches of the government. Lacking the judicial power given to the Judiciary, it
cannot inquire into mattes that are exclusively the concern of the Judiciary. Neither can it suplant the Executive in
what exclusively belongs to the Executive. (Bengzon vs Senate Blue Ribbon Committee 1991)
‣ SEE — Bengzon vs Senate Blue Ribbon Committee G.R. No. 89914, November 20, 1991
‣ In this case, a legislative inquiry was conducted upon the instigation of Senator Enrile who said in a privileged
speech that there was need to determine the existence of violation of law in the alleged transfer of some
properties of "Kokoy" Romualdez to the Lopa Group of companies, the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee
decided, purportedly in aid of legislation, to investigate the transaction. The Court ruled that the investigation
was not in aid of legislation because "the speech of Senator Enrile contained no suggestion of contemplated
legislation" but merely pointed to the need to determine whether "the relatives of President Aquino, particularly
Mr. Ricardo Lopa, had violated the law." To allow the investigation to continue would violate separation of
powers.

‣ NOTE — There were dissents to the majority opinion as the proper position to take is to uphold legislative
inquiries as a matter of inter-departmental courtesy, see the dissenting opinions
2. IT MUST BE IN ACCORDANCE WITH ITS DULY PUBLISHED RULES OF PROCEDURE
‣ Publication is indispensable

‣ SEE — Garcillano vs House of Representatives, G.R. No. 170338, December 23, 2008
‣ Section 21, Article VI of the 1987 Constitution explicitly provides that "[t]he Senate or the House of
Representatives, or any of its respective committees may conduct inquiries in aid of legislation in accordance with
its duly published rules of procedure." The requisite of publication of the rules is intended to satisfy the basic
requirements of due process. Publication is indeed imperative, for it will be the height of injustice to punish or
otherwise burden a citizen for the transgression of a law or rule of which he had no notice whatsoever, not even a
constructive one. What constitutes publication is set forth in Article 2 of the Civil Code, which provides that "[l]aws
shall take effect after 15 days following the completion of their publication either in the Official Gazette, or in a
newspaper of general

‣ Respondents justify their non-observance of the constitutionally mandated publication by arguing that the rules
have never been amended since 1995 and, despite that, they are published in booklet form available to anyone for
free. The Court does not agree. The absence of any amendment to the rules cannot justify the Senate’s defiance of
the clear and unambiguous language of Section 21, Article VI of the Constitution. The organic law instructs,
without more, that the Senate or its committees may conduct inquiries in aid of legislation only in accordance with
duly published rules of procedure, and does not make any distinction whether or not these rules have undergone
amendments or revision. The constitutional mandate to publish the said rules prevails over any custom, practice or
tradition followed by the Senate. and accessible to the public at the Senate’s internet web page circulation in the
Philippines.

‣ The publication of the Rules of Procedure in the website of the Senate, or in pamphlet form available at the
Senate, is not sufficient under the Tañada v. Tuvera ruling which requires publication either in the Official Gazette or
in a newspaper of general circulation. The Rules of Procedure even provide that the rules "shall take effect seven
(7) days after publication in two (2) newspapers of general circulation," precluding any other form of publication.
Publication in accordance with Tañada is mandatory to comply with the due process requirement because the
Rules of Procedure put a person’s liberty at risk. A person who violates the Rules of Procedure could be arrested
and detained by the Senate.

‣ The invocation by the respondents of the provisions of R.A. No. 8792, otherwise known as the Electronic
Commerce Act of 2000, to support their claim of valid publication through the internet is all the more incorrect.
R.A. 8792 considers an electronic data message or an electronic document as the functional equivalent of a
written document only for evidentiary purposes. In other words, the law merely recognizes the admissibility in
evidence (for their being the original) of electronic data messages and/or electronic documents. It does not make
the internet a medium for publishing laws, rules and regulations.

3. THE RIGHTS OF PERSONS APPEARING IN, OR AFFECTED BY, SUCH INQUIRIES SHALL BE RESPECTED
‣ BERNAS — This is just another way of saying that legislative investigations must be "subject to the limitations placed
by the Constitution on governmental action." And since all governmental action must be exercised subject to
constitutional limitations, principally found in the Bill of Rights, this limitation really creates no new constitutional right.

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‣ Such as the right against self-incrimination

‣ SEE — Bengzon vs Senate Blue Ribbon Committee, G.R. No. 89914, November 20, 1991
‣ The power of both houses of Congress to conduct inquiries in aid of legislation is not, therefore, absolute or
unlimited. Its exercise is circumscribed by the afore-quoted provision of the Constitution. Thus, as provided
therein, the investigation must be "in aid of legislation in accordance with its duly published rules of procedure"
and that "the rights of persons appearing in or affected by such inquiries shall be respected." It follows then that
the rights of persons under the Bill of Rights must be respected, including the right to due process and the right
not to be compelled to testify against one's self.

‣ It has been held that "a congressional committee's right to inquire is 'subject to all relevant limitations placed by
the Constitution on governmental action,' including "'the relevant limitations of the Bill of Rights.

‣ The mere semblance of legislative purpose would not justify an inquiry in the face of the Bill of Rights. The critical
element is the existence of, and the weight to be ascribed to, the interest of the Congress in demanding
disclosures from an unwilling witness. We cannot simply assume, however, that every congressional investigation
is justified by a public need that over-balances any private rights affected. To do so would be to abdicate the
responsibility placed by the Constitution upon the judiciary to insure that the Congress does not unjustifiably
encroah upon an individual's right to privacy nor abridge his liberty of speech, press, religion or assembly.
4. DOCTRINE OF EXECUTIVE PRIVILEGE
‣ See discussion of Senate vs Ermita and Neri vs Senate in Art. 7

POWER OF CONGRESSIONAL OVERSIGHT

Section 22. The heads of departments may, upon their own initiative, with the consent of the President, or upon the
request of either House, as the rules of each House shall provide, appear before and be heard by such House on any
matter pertaining to their departments. Written questions shall be submitted to the President of the Senate or the Speaker
of the House of Representatives at least three days before their scheduled appearance. Interpellations shall not be limited
to written questions, but may cover matters related thereto. When the security of the State or the public interest so
requires and the President so states in writing, the appearance shall be conducted in executive session.

‣ RULE — THE HEADS OF DEPARTMENTS MAY APPEAR BEFORE AND BE HEARD BY SUCH EITHER HOUSE OF CONGRESS ON ANY
MATTER PERTAINING TO THEIR DEPARTMENTS

‣ Section 22 formalizes the "oversight function" of Congress. The special mention of heads of departments was put in,
even under the Administrative Code before the 1935 Constitution, was intended to forestall any objection to a
department head's appearance in Congress.

‣ Some cases say this pertains to a “question hour”, but that is only true in parliamentary systems

‣ BERNAS — The "question hour" is proper to a parliamentary system where there is no separation between the
legislative and executive department. Section 22, unlike in the "question hour" under the 1973 Constitution, has
made the appearance of department heads voluntary. They can appear on their own initiative, with the consent of
the President, or at the request of Congress. Because of the separation of powers, however, department
secretaries may not impose their appearance upon either House.

‣ When may department heads appear?


1. Upon their own initiative, with the consent of the President, or

2. Upon the request of either House

‣ NOTE — unlike the power of legislative inquiry in Sec. 21, the application Sec. 22 is limited to department heads
and such is merely discretionary on their part. They cannot be compelled by Congress.

‣ What matters may be the subject of the inquiry under Sec. 22?
‣ Any matter pertaining to the department of the department head

‣ What are the rules and conditions to be observed?


1. Written questions shall be submitted to the President of the Senate or the Speaker of the House of Representatives at
least three days before the scheduled appearance of the department heads

2. Interpellations shall not be limited to written questions, but may cover matters related thereto.

3. When the security of the State or the public interest so requires and the President so states in writing, the appearance
shall be conducted in executive session.

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‣ Is the oversight function in Sec. 22 the same as the power of legislative inquiry under Sec. 21?
‣ NACHURA — NO. A distinction has to be made between the power to conduct inquiries in aid of legislation, the aim
of which is to elicit information that may be used for legislation, and the power to conduct a question hour, the
objective of which is to obtain information in pursuit of Congress’ oversight function
‣ SEE — Senate vs Ermita, G.R. No. 169777, April 20, 2006
‣ When Congress merely seeks to be informed on how department heads are implementing the statutes which it has
issued, its right to such information is not as imperative as that of the President to whom, as Chief Executive, the
deparment heads must give a report of their performance as a matter of duty. In such instances, Art. VI, Sec. 22, in
keeping with the doctrine of separation of powers, states that Congress may only request the appearance of
department heads, who may appear with
‣ However, when the inquiry in which Congress requires their appearance is “in aid of legislation” under Sec. 21, the
appearance is mandatory. When Congress exercises its power of inquiry, the only way for department heads to
exempt themselves therefrom is by a valid claim of executive privilege. They are not exempt by the mere fact that
they are department heads. Only one executive official may be exempted from this power — the President — on
whom executive power is vested, hence, beyond the reach of Congress except through the power of
impeachment.

‣ Thus, the requirement for Cabinet Members to secure Presidential consent under Sec. 1 of E.O. 464, which is
limited only to appearances in the question hour, is valid on its face. It cannot, however, be applied to appearances
of deparment heads in inquiries in aid of legislation. Congress is not bound in such instances to respect the refusal
of the department head to appear in such inquiry, unless a valid claim of privilege is subsequently made either by
the President herself or by the Executive Secretary, acting for the President.

CONGRESSIONAL OVERSIGHT
‣ RULE — ANY POST-ENACTMENT CONGRESSIONAL MEASURE SUCH AS CONGRESSIONAL OVERSIGHT MUST BE CONFINED TO THE
FOLLOWING, ANY ACTION OR STEP BEYOND WILL UNDERMINE THE SEPARATION OF POWERS GUARANTEED BY THE
CONSTITUTION.—
1. Scrutiny — based primarily on Congress’ power of appropriation and the budget hearings conducted in connection
with it, its power to ask heads of departments to appear before and be heard by either of its Houses on any matter
pertaining to their departments and its power of confirmation

2. Investigation and monitoring — of the implementation of laws pursuant to the power of Congress to conduct
inquiries in aid of legislation.

‣ What is a “legislative/congressional veto”?


‣ NACHURA — A congressional veto is a means whereby the legislature can block or modify administrative action
taken under a statute. It is a form of legislative control in the implementation of particular executive action. The form
may either be negative, i.e., subjecting the executive action to disapproval by Congress, or affirmative, i.e., requiring
approval of the executive action by Congress.

‣ Is a legislative veto constitutional?


‣ NO. A congressional veto is subject to serious questions involving the principle of separation of powers.

‣ SEE —Philconsa v. Enriquez, 235 SCRA 506


‣ On the issue of whether Special Provision No. 2 on the “Use of Funds” in the appropriation for the modernization of
the AFP, General Appropriations Act of 1994, which requires prior approval of Congress for the release of the
corresponding modernization funds, is unconstitutional, the Supreme Court did not resolve the issue of legislative
veto, but instead, ruled that any provision blocking an administrative action in implementing a law or requiring
legislative approval for executive acts

JURISPRUDENCE ON CONGRESSIONAL OVERSIGHT


‣ ABAKADA GURO PARTY-LIST VS PURISIMA, G.R. NO. 166715, AUGUST 14, 2008
‣ Section 12 of RA 9335 provides: SEC. 12. Joint Congressional Oversight Committee. – There is hereby created a Joint
Congressional Oversight Committee composed of seven Members from the Senate and seven Members from the
House of Representatives. The Members from the Senate shall be appointed by the Senate President, with at least two
senators representing the minority. The Members from the House of Representatives shall be appointed by the
Speaker with at least two members representing the minority. After the Oversight Committee will have approved the
implementing rules and regulations (IRR) it shall thereafter become functus officio and therefore cease to exist.
‣ The Joint Congressional Oversight Committee in RA 9335 was created for the purpose of approving the implementing
rules and regulations (IRR) formulated by the DOF, DBM, NEDA, BIR, BOC and CSC. On May 22, 2006, it approved

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the said IRR. From then on, it became functus officio and ceased to exist. Hence, the issue of its alleged
encroachment on the executive function of implementing and enforcing the law may be considered moot and
academic.

‣ This notwithstanding, this might be as good a time as any for the Court to confront the issue of the constitutionality of
the Joint Congressional Oversight Committee created under RA 9335 (or other similar laws for that matter).

‣ Concept and bases of congressional oversight


‣ Broadly defined, the power of oversight embraces all activities undertaken by Congress to enhance its
understanding of and influence over the implementation of legislation it has enacted.

‣ Clearly, oversight concerns post-enactment measures undertaken by Congress:

a. To monitor bureaucratic compliance with program objectives

b. To determine whether agencies are properly administered

c. To eliminate executive waste and dishonesty

d. To prevent executive usurpation of legislative authority, and

e. To assess executive conformity with the congressional perception of public interest.

‣ The power of oversight has been held to be intrinsic in the grant of legislative power itself and integral to the
checks and balances inherent in a democratic system of government. x x x x x x x x x

‣ Over the years, Congress has invoked its oversight power with increased frequency to check the perceived
"exponential accumulation of power" by the executive branch. By the beginning of the 20th century, Congress has
delegated an enormous amount of legislative authority to the executive branch and the administrative agencies.
Congress, thus, uses its oversight power to make sure that the administrative agencies perform their functions
within the authority delegated to them

‣ Categories of congressional oversight functions


‣ The acts done by Congress purportedly in the exercise of its oversight powers may be divided into three
categories, namely: scrutiny, investigation and supervision.

1. Scrutiny — Congressional scrutiny implies a lesser intensity and continuity of attention to administrative
operations. Its primary purpose is to determine economy and efficiency of the operation of government activities.
In the exercise of legislative scrutiny, Congress may request information and report from the other branches of
government. It can give recommendations or pass resolutions for consideration of the agency involved.

2. Congressional investigation — While congressional scrutiny is regarded as a passive process of looking at the
facts that are readily available, congressional investigation involves a more intense digging of facts. The power of
Congress to conduct investigation is recognized by the 1987 Constitution under section 21, Article VI

3. Legislative supervision — The third and most encompassing form by which Congress exercises its oversight
power is thru legislative supervision. "Supervision" connotes a continuing and informed awareness on the part of
a congressional committee regarding executive operations in a given administrative area. While both
congressional scrutiny and investigation involve inquiry into past executive branch actions in order to influence
future executive branch performance, congressional supervision allows Congress to scrutinize the exercise of
delegated law-making authority, and permits Congress to retain part of that delegated authority.

‣ Invalidity of Legislative Supervision through “Legislative Veto”

‣ Congress exercises supervision over the executive agencies through its veto power. It typically utilizes veto
provisions when granting the President or an executive agency the power to promulgate regulations with the force
of law. These provisions require the President or an agency to present the proposed regulations to Congress,
which retains a "right" to approve or disapprove any regulation before it takes effect. Such legislative veto
provisions usually provide that a proposed regulation will become a law after the expiration of a certain period of
time, only if Congress does not affirmatively disapprove of the regulation in the meantime. Less frequently, the
statute provides that a proposed regulation will become law if Congress affirmatively approves it.

‣ Supporters of legislative veto stress that it is necessary to maintain the balance of power between the legislative
and the executive branches of government as it offers lawmakers a way to delegate vast power to the executive
branch or to independent agencies while retaining the option to cancel particular exercise of such power without
having to pass new legislation or to repeal existing law. They contend that this arrangement promotes democratic
accountability as it provides legislative check on the activities of unelected administrative agencies. One
proponent thus explains:

‣ It is too late to debate the merits of this delegation policy: the policy is too deeply embedded in our law and
practice. It suffices to say that the complexities of modern government have often led Congress-whether by actual
or perceived necessity- to legislate by declaring broad policy goals and general statutory standards, leaving the
choice of policy options to the discretion of an executive officer. Congress articulates legislative aims, but leaves
their implementation to the judgment of parties who may or may not have participated in or agreed with the

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development of those aims. Consequently, absent safeguards, in many instances the reverse of our constitutional
scheme could be effected: Congress proposes, the Executive disposes. One safeguard, of course, is the
legislative power to enact new legislation or to change existing law. But without some means of overseeing post
enactment activities of the executive branch, Congress would be unable to determine whether its policies have
been implemented in accordance with legislative intent and thus whether legislative intervention is appropriate.

‣ Its opponents, however, criticize the legislative veto as undue encroachment upon the executive prerogatives. They
urge that any post-enactment measures undertaken by the legislative branch should be limited to scrutiny and
investigation; any measure beyond that would undermine the separation of powers guaranteed by the
Constitution. They contend that legislative veto constitutes an impermissible evasion of the President’s veto
authority and intrusion into the powers vested in the executive or judicial branches of government. Proponents
counter that legislative veto enhances separation of powers as it prevents the executive branch and independent
agencies from accumulating too much power. They submit that reporting requirements and congressional
committee investigations allow Congress to scrutinize only the exercise of delegated law-making authority. They
do not allow Congress to review executive proposals before they take effect and they do not afford the opportunity
for ongoing and binding expressions of congressional intent. In contrast, legislative veto permits Congress to
participate prospectively in the approval or disapproval of "subordinate law" or those enacted by the executive
branch pursuant to a delegation of authority by Congress. They further argue that legislative veto "is a necessary
response by Congress to the accretion of policy control by forces outside its chambers." In an era of delegated
authority, they point out that legislative veto "is the most efficient means Congress has yet devised to retain control
over the evolution and implementation of its policy as declared by statute."

‣ In Macalintal, given the concept and configuration of the power of congressional oversight and considering the
nature and powers of a constitutional body like the Commission on Elections, the Court struck down the provision
in RA 9189 (The Overseas Absentee Voting Act of 2003) creating a Joint Congressional Committee. The committee
was tasked not only to monitor and evaluate the implementation of the said law but also to review, revise, amend
and approve the IRR promulgated by the Commission on Elections. The Court held that these functions infringed
on the constitutional independence of the Commission on Elections.

‣ With this backdrop, it is clear that congressional oversight is not unconstitutional per se, meaning, it neither
necessarily constitutes an encroachment on the executive power to implement laws nor undermines the
constitutional separation of powers. Rather, it is integral to the checks and balances inherent in a democratic
system of government. It may in fact even enhance the separation of powers as it prevents the over-accumulation
of power in the executive branch.

‣ However, to forestall the danger of congressional encroachment "beyond the legislative sphere," the Constitution
imposes two basic and related constraints on Congress. It may not vest itself, any of its committees or its
members with either executive or judicial power. And, when it exercises its legislative power, it must follow the
"single, finely wrought and exhaustively considered, procedures" specified under the Constitution, including the
procedure for enactment of laws and presentment.

‣ Any post-enactment congressional measure such as this should be limited to scrutiny and investigation. Any
action or step beyond that will undermine the separation of powers guaranteed by the Constitution. Legislative
vetoes fall in this class.
‣ Legislative veto is a statutory provision requiring the President or an administrative agency to present the
proposed implementing rules and regulations of a law to Congress which, by itself or through a committee formed
by it, retains a "right" or "power" to approve or disapprove such regulations before they take effect. As such, a
legislative veto in the form of a congressional oversight committee is in the form of an inward-turning delegation
designed to attach a congressional leash (other than through scrutiny and investigation) to an agency to which
Congress has by law initially delegated broad powers. It radically changes the design or structure of the
Constitution’s diagram of power as it entrusts to Congress a direct role in enforcing, applying or implementing its
own laws.

‣ Congress has two options when enacting legislation to define national policy within the broad horizons of its
legislative competence. It can itself formulate the details or it can assign to the executive branch the responsibility
for making necessary managerial decisions in conformity with those standards. In the latter case, the law must be
complete in all its essential terms and conditions when it leaves the hands of the legislature. Thus, what is left for
the executive branch or the concerned administrative agency when it formulates rules and regulations
implementing the law is to fill up details (supplementary rule-making) or ascertain facts necessary to bring the law
into actual operation (contingent rule-making).

‣ Administrative regulations enacted by administrative agencies to implement and interpret the law which they are
entrusted to enforce have the force of law and are entitled to respect. Such rules and regulations partake of the
nature of a statute and are just as binding as if they have been written in the statute itself. As such, they have the
force and effect of law and enjoy the presumption of constitutionality and legality until they are set aside with
finality in an appropriate case by a competent court. Congress, in the guise of assuming the role of an overseer,
may not pass upon their legality by subjecting them to its stamp of approval without disturbing the calculated
balance of powers established by the Constitution. In exercising discretion to approve or disapprove the IRR

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based on a determination of whether or not they conformed with the provisions of RA 9335, Congress arrogated
judicial power unto itself, a power exclusively vested in this Court by the Constitution.

‣ BELGICA VS OCHOA, G.R. NO. 208566, NOVEMBER 19, 2013


‣ One of the reasons why the Supreme Court held the the Pork Barrel System as unconstitutional is because it diluted
the effectiveness of congressional oversight by giving legislators a stake in the affairs of budget execution, an aspect
of governance which they may be called to monitor and scrutinize

‣ An accountability mechanism with which the proper expenditure of public funds may be checked is the power of
congressional oversight. As mentioned in Abakada, congressional oversight may be performed either through: (a)
scrutiny based primarily on Congress‘ power of appropriation and the budget hearings conducted in connection with
it, its power to ask heads of departments to appear before and be heard by either of its Houses on any matter
pertaining to their departments and its power of confirmation; or (b) investigation and monitoring of the
implementation of laws pursuant to the power of Congress to conduct inquiries in aid of legislation.

‣ The Court agrees with petitioners that certain features embedded in some forms of Congressional Pork Barrel, among
others the 2013 PDAF Article, has an effect on congressional oversight. The fact that individual legislators are given
post-enactment roles in the implementation of the budget makes it difficult for them to become disinterested
"observers" when scrutinizing, investigating or monitoring the implementation of the appropriation law. To a certain
extent, the conduct of oversight would be tainted as said legislators, who are vested with post-enactment authority,
would, in effect, be checking on activities in which they themselves participate.

JURISPRUDENCE ON THE NATURE OF LEGISLATIVE POWERS UNDER ART. 6, SEC. 21 AND 22


‣ SENATE VS ERMITA, G.R. NO. 169777, APRIL 20, 2006
‣ In the context of a parliamentary system of government, the "question hour" has a definite meaning. It is a period of
confrontation initiated by Parliament to hold the Prime Minister and the other ministers accountable for their acts and
the operation of the government, corresponding to what is known in Britain as the question period. There was a
specific provision for a question hour in the 1973 Constitution which made the appearance of ministers mandatory.
The same perfectly conformed to the parliamentary system established by that Constitution, where the ministers are
also members of the legislature and are directly accountable to it.

‣ An essential feature of the parliamentary system of government is the immediate accountability of the Prime Minister
and the Cabinet to the National Assembly. They shall be responsible to the National Assembly for the program of
government and shall determine the guidelines of national policy. Unlike in the presidential system where the tenure of
office of all elected officials cannot be terminated before their term expired, the Prime Minister and the Cabinet remain
in office only as long as they enjoy the confidence of the National Assembly. The moment this confidence is lost the
Prime Minister and the Cabinet may be changed.

‣ The framers of the 1987 Constitution removed the mandatory nature of such appearance during the question hour in
the present Constitution so as to conform more fully to a system of separation of powers. To that extent, the question
hour, as it is presently understood in this jurisdiction, departs from the question period of the parliamentary system.
That department heads may not be required to appear in a question hour does not, however, mean that the legislature
is rendered powerless to elicit information from them in all circumstances. In fact, in light of the absence of a
mandatory question period, the need to enforce Congress’ right to executive information in the performance of its
legislative function becomes more imperative. As Schwartz observes:

‣ Indeed, if the separation of powers has anything to tell us on the subject under discussion, it is that the Congress has
the right to obtain information from any source – even from officials of departments and agencies in the executive
branch. In the United States there is, unlike the situation which prevails in a parliamentary system such as that in
Britain, a clear separation between the legislative and executive branches. It is this very separation that makes the
congressional right to obtain information from the executive so essential, if the functions of the Congress as the
elected representatives of the people are adequately to be carried out. The absence of close rapport between the
legislative and executive branches in this country, comparable to those which exist under a parliamentary system, and
the nonexistence in the Congress of an institution such as the British question period have perforce made reliance by
the Congress upon its right to obtain information from the executive essential, if it is intelligently to perform its
legislative tasks. Unless the Congress possesses the right to obtain executive information, its power of oversight of
administration in a system such as ours becomes a power devoid of most of its practical content, since it depends for
its effectiveness solely upon information parceled out ex gratia by the executive.

‣ Sections 21 and 22, therefore, while closely related and complementary to each other, should not be considered as
pertaining to the same power of Congress. One specifically relates to the power to conduct inquiries in aid of
legislation, the aim of which is to elicit information that may be used for legislation, while the other pertains to the
power to conduct a question hour, the objective of which is to obtain information in pursuit of Congress’ oversight
function.

‣ When Congress merely seeks to be informed on how department heads are implementing the statutes which it has
issued, its right to such information is not as imperative as that of the President to whom, as Chief Executive, such

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department heads must give a report of their performance as a matter of duty. In such instances, Section 22, in
keeping with the separation of powers, states that Congress may only request their appearance. Nonetheless, when
the inquiry in which Congress requires their appearance is "in aid of legislation" under Section 21, the appearance is
mandatory for the same reasons stated in Arnault.

‣ In fine, the oversight function of Congress may be facilitated by compulsory process only to the extent that it is
performed in pursuit of legislation. This is consistent with the intent discerned from the deliberations of the
Constitutional Commission.

‣ Ultimately, the power of Congress to compel the appearance of executive officials under Section 21 and the lack of it
under Section 22 find their basis in the principle of separation of powers. While the executive branch is a co-equal
branch of the legislature, it cannot frustrate the power of Congress to legislate by refusing to comply with its demands
for information.

POWER TO DECLARE A STATE OF WAR AND DELEGATION OF EMERGENCY POWERS

Section 23.
(1) The Congress, by a vote of two-thirds of both Houses in joint session assembled, voting separately, shall have the
sole power to declare the existence of a state of war.
(2) In times of war or other national emergency, the Congress may, by law, authorize the President, for a limited period
and subject to such restrictions as it may prescribe, to exercise powers necessary and proper to carry out a declared
national policy. Unless sooner withdrawn by resolution of the Congress, such powers shall cease upon the next
adjournment thereof.

ARTICLE 2 — DECLARATION OF PRINCIPLES AND STATE POLICIES
Section 2. The Philippines renounces war as an instrument of national policy, adopts the generally accepted principles of
international law as part of the law of the land and adheres to the policy of peace, equality, justice, freedom, cooperation,
and amity with all nations.

DECLARATION OF THE EXISTENCE OF A STATE OF WAR


‣ RULE — ONLY CONGRESS HAS THE SOLE POWER TO DECLARE THE EXISTENCE OF A STATE OF WAR
‣ How should Congress decide in declaring a state of war?
‣ By a vote of two-thirds of both Houses in joint session assembled, voting separately

‣ May the country engage in war in the absence of a declaration of war?


‣ YES. The actual power to make war is vested in the President alone, even in the absence of a declaration of the
Legislative.

‣ BERNAS citing US Jurisprudence — While the Constitution gives to the legislature the power to declare the
existence of a state of war and to enact all measures to support the war, the actual power to make war is lodged
elsewhere, that is, in the executive power which holds the sword of the nation. The executive power, when
necessary, may make war even in the absence of a declaration of war. In the words of the American Supreme
Court, war being a question of actualities, "the President was bound to meet it in the shape it presented itself,
without waiting for Congress to baptize it with a name; and no name given to it by him or them could change the
fact.

DELEGATION OF EMERGENCY POWERS TO THE PRESIDENT


‣ RULE — IN THE FOLLOWING CASES, THE CONGRESS MAY AUTHORIZE THE PRESIDENT TO EXERCISE POWERS NECESSARY AND
PROPER TO CARRY OUT A DECLARED NATIONAL POLICY —

1. In times of war

2. Other national emergency

‣ How should Congress delegate emergency powers to the President?


‣ By ordinary law

‣ What are the limitations on the delegation of emergency powers to the President?
1. It must be for a limited period — It should cease upon the next adjournment of Congress unless sooner withdraw by
resolution

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2. Congress may prescribe restrictions — such as fixing the duration thereof

3. The delegation must be necessary and proper to carry out a declared national policy

‣ What kind of powers may be given to the President?


‣ BERNAS — There is no specification. Under the present provision, Congress may authorize the President "to exercise
powers necessary and proper to carry out a declared national policy." It is submitted that, on the basis of this
provision, the President may be given emergency legislative powers if Congress so desires. This is confirmed by the
explanation made on the floor of the 1971 Convention, which is the source of this provision, that emergency powers
can include the power to rule by "executive fiat.”

‣ NOTE — This constitutes an exception to the rule on non-delegability of legislative powers

ORIGINATION OF CERTAIN LEGISLATIVE BILLS

Section 24. All appropriation, revenue or tariff bills, bills authorizing increase of the public debt, bills of local application,
and private bills, shall originate exclusively in the House of Representatives, but the Senate may propose or concur with
amendments.

‣ RULE — THE FOLLOWING BILLS MUST ORIGINATE EXCLUSIVELY IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES—
1. Appropriation, revenue or tariff bills
‣ A bill is an appropriation measure whose principal purpose pertains to the expenditure of public funds.

‣ Such as — the yearly general appropriations law


2. Bills authorizing increase of the public debt
3. Bills of local application
‣ Such as — a bill for the conversion of a municipality into a city, bills renaming a street
4. Private bills
‣ Such as — a naturalization bill for the benefit of a single person
‣ What does “originate exclusively in the HREP” mean?
‣ It simply means that the bill should be initiated in the HREP, upon reaching the Senate, it can be changed and
completely modified by the Senate. The Senate can even make its own version of the bill.

‣ SEE — Tolentino vs Secretary of Finance, 235 SCRA 630 (1994)


‣ This involved R.A. 7716, the Value Added Tax (VAT) law.

‣ The Court said that the exclusivity of the prerogative of the House of Representatives means simply that the House
alone can initiate the passage of a revenue bill, such that, if the House does not initiate one, no revenue law will be
passed. But once the House has approved a revenue bill and passed it on to the Senate, the Senate can
completely overhaul it, by amendment of parts or by amendment by substitution, and come out with one
completely different from what the House approved. It does not matter whether the Senate already anticipated a
bill from the House and formulated one to take the place of whatever the House might send.

‣ The Court rejected the idea that the Senate is bound to retain the essence of what the other House approved.
Textually, it is the "bill" which must exclusively originate from the House; but the "law" itself which is the product of
the total bicameral legislative process originates not just from the House but from both Senate and House.

‣ It is not the law — but the revenue bill — which is required by the Constitution to "originate exclusively" in the
House of Representatives. It is important to emphasize this, because a bill originating in the House may undergo
such extensive changes in the Senate that the result may be a rewriting of the whole. What is important to note is
that, as a result of the Senate action, a distinct bill may be produced. To insist that a revenue statute — and not
only the bill which initiated the legislative process culminating in the enactment of the law — must substantially be
the same as the House bill would be to deny the Senate's power not only to "concur with amendments" but also
to "propose amendments." It would be to violate the coequality of legislative power of the two houses of Congress
and in fact make the House superior to the Senate.

‣ Also, the Constitution does not prohibit the filing in the Senate of a substitute bill in anticipation of its receipt of the
bill from the House, so long as action by the Senate as a body is withheld pending receipt of the House bill.

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PROCEDURAL REQUIREMENTS ON THE PASSING OF BILLS

Section 26.
(1) Every bill passed by the Congress shall embrace only one subject which shall be expressed in the title thereof.
(2) No bill passed by either House shall become a law unless it has passed three readings on separate days, and printed
copies thereof in its final form have been distributed to its Members three days before its passage, except when the
President certifies to the necessity of its immediate enactment to meet a public calamity or emergency. Upon the last
reading of a bill, no amendment thereto shall be allowed, and the vote thereon shall be taken immediately thereafter,
and the yeas and nays entered in the Journal.

LEGISLATIVE BILLS
‣ What are bills?

RULES ON THE PASSAGE OF LEGISLATIVE BILLS


1. EVERY BILL MUST EMBRACE ONLY ONE SUBJECT WHICH SHALL BE EXPRESSED IN THE BILL’S TITLE
‣ This rule is mandatory and not merely directory. Compliance is essential to the validity of legislation.

‣ Thus, “Riders” cannot be inserted in a Bill

‣ What is a “rider”?
‣ It is a provision not germane to the subject-matter of the bill. (Garcia v. Mata 1975)
‣ Sometimes, Congress inserts a completely foreign provision in a very long bill that will go undetected

‣ How should compliance with this rule be determined?


‣ The requirement that every bill must only have one subject expressed in the title is satisfied if the title is
comprehensive enough to include subjects related to the general purpose which the statute seeks to achieve (Tio
v. Videogram Regulatory Board 1987)

‣ It should be sufficient compliance with such requirement if the title expresses the general subject and all the
provisions of the statute are germane to that general subject. It should be liberally in favour of compliance. The
rule "should be given a practical rather than technical construction. (Sumulong vs COMELEC 1941)
‣ Tobias
‣ RATIONALE —

‣ Legislative assemblies, for the dispatch of business, often pass bills by their titles only without requiring them to
be read. A specious title sometimes covers legislation which, if its real character had been disclosed, would not
have commanded assent. To prevent surprise and fraud on the legislature is one of the purposes this provision
was intended to accomplish. Before the adoption of this provision the title of a statute was often no indication of
its subject or contents. An evil this constitutional requirement was intended to correct was the blending in one and
the same statute of such things as were diverse in their nature, and were connected only to combine in favor of the
statute all the advocates of each, thus often securing the passage of several measures no one of which could have
succeeded on its own merits. (Central Capiz v. Ramirez 1920)

‣ The purpose is to —

1. Prevent hodge-podge or log-rolling legislation

2. Prevent surprise or fraud upon the legislature by means of provisions in bills of which the titles gave no
information, and which might therefore be overlooked and carelessly and unintentionally adopted; and,

3. Fairly appraise the people, through such publication of legislative proceedings as is usually made, of the
subjects of legislation that are being considered, in order that they may have opportunity of being heard
thereon by petition or otherwise if they shall so desire. (Central Capiz v. Ramirez 1920)

2. EVERY BILL MUST PASS THROUGH THREE READINGS ON SEPARATE DAYS


‣ EXCEPT — When the President certifies to the necessity of its immediate enactment to meet a public calamity or
emergency

3. PRINTED COPIES OF EVERY BILL IN ITS FINAL FORM SHOULD BE DISTRIBUTED TO THE MEMBERS OF THE RESPECTIVE HOUSE,
THREE DAYS BEFORE ITS PASSAGE

‣ EXCEPT — When the President certifies to the necessity of its immediate enactment to meet a public calamity or
emergency

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4. UPON THE LAST READING OF A BILL —
a. No more amendment is allowed

b. The vote shall be taken immediately thereafter

c. The yeas and nays entered in the journal

BICAMERAL CONFERENCE COMMITTEES


‣ If the version approved by the Senate is different from that approved by the House of Representatives, how are
the differences reconciled?
‣ In a bicameral system bills are independently processed by both Houses of Congress. It is not unusual that the final
version approved by one House differs from what has been approved by the other. The "conference committee,"
consisting of members nominated from both Houses, is an extra-constitutional creation of Congress whose function is
to propose to Congress ways of reconciling conflicting provisions found in the Senate version and in the House
version of a bill.

‣ Can the Bicameral Conference Committee include in its report an entirely new provision that is not found either in
the House bill or in the Senate bill?
‣ YES. As long as they are germane to the purpose of the bill, such amendments could be introduced even if these were
not in either original bill.

‣ SEE — Tolentino vs Secretary of Finance, 235 SCRA 630 (1994)


‣ It is within the power of a conference committee to include in its report an entirely new provision that is not found
either in the House bill or in the Senate bill. If the committee can propose an amendment consisting of one or two
provisions, there is no reason why it cannot propose several provisions, collectively considered as an "amendment
in the nature of a substitute," so long as such amendment is germane to the subject of the bills before the
committee. After all, its report was not final but needed the approval of both houses of Congress to become valid
as an act of the legislative department. The charge that in this case the Conference Committee acted as a third
legislative chamber is thus without any basis

‣ May the Bicameral Conference Committee meet in executive sessions?


‣ YES. There nothing unusual or extraordinary about the fact that the conference committee met in executive sessions.
Often the only way to reach agreement on conflicting provisions is to meet behind closed doors, with only the
conferees present. Otherwise, no compromise is likely to be made

HOW A BILL BECOMES LAW; PRESIDENTIAL VETO AND POWER OF CONGRESSIONAL OVERRIDE

Section 27.
(1) Every bill passed by the Congress shall, before it becomes a law, be presented to the President. If he approves the
same he shall sign it; otherwise, he shall veto it and return the same with his objections to the House where it
originated, which shall enter the objections at large in its Journal and proceed to reconsider it. If, after such
reconsideration, two-thirds of all the Members of such House shall agree to pass the bill, it shall be sent, together with
the objections, to the other House by which it shall likewise be reconsidered, and if approved by two-thirds of all the
Members of that House, it shall become a law. In all such cases, the votes of each House shall be determined by yeas
or nays, and the names of the Members voting for or against shall be entered in its Journal. The President shall
communicate his veto of any bill to the House where it originated within thirty days after the date of receipt thereof,
otherwise, it shall become a law as if he had signed it.
(2) The President shall have the power to veto any particular item or items in an appropriation, revenue, or tariff bill, but
the veto shall not affect the item or items to which he does not object.

WHEN LEGISLATIVE BILLS BECOME LAW


‣ When does a bill finally become law?
‣ RULE — IT MUST APPROVED BY BOTH CONGRESS AND THE PRESIDENT
1. Congress (Congressional approval)
‣ The legislative action required of Congress is a positive act

‣ There is no enactment of law by legislative inaction

2. President (Executive Approval)

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‣ Every bill passed by the Congress shall, before it becomes a law, be presented to the President.

‣ Approval by the President may be by positive act or by inaction.

‣ The President must communicate his veto of any bill to the House where it originated within 30 days after the
date of receipt, otherwise, it shall become a law as if he had signed it.

‣ EXCEPT — CONGRESS ALONE MAY PASS A LAW BY EXERCISING ITS POWER TO OVERRIDE PRESIDENTIAL VETOES BY 2/3
VOTE OF BOTH HOUSES

‣ This is the power of congressional override

‣ Does the passage of a law make it immediately effective and binding?


‣ NO. Publication in every case is indispensable. Total omission of publication would be a denial of due process in that
the people would not know what laws to obey. (Tanada v. Tuvera 1986)
‣ Generally, laws take effect 15 days after its publication in the official gazette or a newspaper of general circulation (Art.
2, Civil Code as amended by EO No. 200)
‣ Presumption of Constitutionality of Laws
‣ PJA vs Prado

PRESIDENTIAL VETO
‣ RULE — THE PRESIDENT CAN VETO THE PASSAGE OF LAW
‣ RATIONALE — the President‘s disapproval of a bill, commonly known as a veto, is essentially a legislative act. The
questions presented to the mind of the Chief Executive are precisely the same as those the legislature must determine
in passing a bill, except that his will be a broader point of view. The Constitution is a limitation upon the power of the
legislative department of the government, but in this respect it is a grant of power to the executive department.
(Belgica vs Ochoa 2013)

‣ The Legislature has the affirmative power to enact laws; the Chief Executive has the negative power by the
constitutional exercise of which he may defeat the will of the Legislature. It follows that the Chief Executive must find
his authority in the Constitution. But in exercising that authority he may not be confined to rules of strict construction
or hampered by the unwise interference of the judiciary. The courts will indulge every intendment in favor of the
constitutionality of a veto in the same manner as they will presume the constitutionality of an act as originally passed
by the Legislature. (Belgica vs Ochoa 2013)

‣ May the President approve some part or parts of a bill and veto the rest?
‣ NO. If the President disapproves a bill approved by Congress, he should veto the entire bill. He is not allowed to veto
separate items of a bill.

‣ EXCEPT — In the following cases, the President may veto parts of a bill —

1. ITEM-VETO OR LINE-VETO IN APPROPRIATION, REVENUE, OR TARIFF BILLS


‣ The President has the power to veto any particular item or items in an appropriation, revenue, or tariff bill,
but the veto shall not affect the item or items to which he does not object. (Art. 6, Sec. 27[2])
‣ RATIONALE — The justification for the President‘s item-veto power rests on a variety of policy goals such
as to prevent log-rolling legislation, impose fiscal restrictions on the legislature, as well as to fortify the
executive branch‘s role in the budgetary process. It is a salutary check upon the legislative body, calculated
to guard the community against the effects of factions, precipitancy, or of any impulse unfriendly to the
public good, which may happen to influence a majority of that body. It is meant to increase the chances in
favor of the community against the passing of bad laws, through haste, inadvertence, or design. (Belgica vs
Ochoa 2013)
‣ What is an “item”?
‣ It refers to the particulars, the details, the district and severable parts of the bill. It is in indivisible some
of money dedicated to a stated purpose. (Gonzales v. Macaraig, Jr. 1990)
‣ Must an item relate only to one specific purpose?
‣ YES. An item of appropriation must be an item characterized by singular correspondence – meaning an
allocation of a specified singular amount for a specified singular purpose, otherwise known as a “line-
item. This treatment not only allows the item to be consistent with its definition as a "specific
appropriation of money" but also ensures that the President may discernibly veto the same. While an
appropriation may be validly apportioned into component percentages or values; however, it is crucial
that each percentage or value must be allocated for its own corresponding purpose for such component
to be considered as a proper line-item. A valid appropriation may even have several related purposes
that are by accounting and budgeting practice considered as one purpose(Belgica vs Ochoa 2013)

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‣ Is an “item” the same as a “provision” in an appropriations bill?
‣ NO. An item is a specific appropriation of money, not some general provision of law, which happens to
be put into an appropriation bill. (Bengzon v. Secretary of Justice of the Philippine Islands)
‣ How should the President exercise “item-veto”?
‣ He must veto the entire item and the corresponding provisions and conditions attached to it.
‣ A condition in an appropriation bill may not vetoed without vetoing the item to which it is attached.
(Bolinao Electronics v.Valencia 1964)
‣ SEE — Gonzales v. Macaraig, Jr. 1990
‣ The President cannot veto a part of the item and approve the remaining part of the item. When a
provision of an appropriation bill affects one or more items of the same, the President cannot veto
the provision without at the same time vetoing the particular item or item to which it relates
2. INAPPROPRIATE PROVISIONS OR “RIDERS” IN APPROPRIATION, REVENUE, OR TARIFF BILLS
‣ This is under the doctrine of "inappropriate provisions” as provided in the case of Gonzales v. Macaraig
‣ It is an exception to the general rule that the President cannot veto provisions or conditions without vetoing
the item to which it relates.
‣ A provision that is constitutionally inappropriate for an appropriation bill may be singled out for veto even if
it is not an appropriation or revenue "item" In essence what this means is that the President may veto
"riders" in an appropriation bill, even though it is not an item of appropriation. (Gonzales v. Macaraig, Jr.
1990)
‣ What is the effect of an invalid veto?
‣ It is without effect, it is as if the President did not act on the bill at all. Hence, the bill becomes a law by executive
inaction (Bolinao Electronics v. Valencia 1964)

CONGRESSIONAL OVERRIDE
‣ RULE — WHEN THE PRESIDENT VETOES A BILL, CONGRESS MAY OVERRIDE THE VETO BY 2/3 VOTE OF BOTH HOUSES
‣ After the president vetoes a bill, it is returned with his objections to the House where it originated, which shall enter
the objections at large in its Journal and proceed to reconsider it.

‣ If, after such reconsideration, 2/3 all the Members of such House agrees to pass the bill, it shall be sent, together with
the objections, to the other House by which it shall likewise be reconsidered, and if approved by 2/3 of all the
Members of that House, it shall become a law.

POWER OF APPROPRIATION; EXPENDITURE OF PUBLIC FUNDS

Section 29.
(1) No money shall be paid out of the Treasury except in pursuance of an appropriation made by law.
(2) No public money or property shall be appropriated, applied, paid, or employed, directly or indirectly, for the use,
benefit, or support of any sect, church, denomination, sectarian institution, or system of religion, or of any priest,
preacher, minister, other religious teacher, or dignitary as such, except when such priest, preacher, minister, or
dignitary is assigned to the armed forces, or to any penal institution, or government orphanage or leprosarium.
(3) All money collected on any tax levied for a special purpose shall be treated as a special fund and paid out for such
purpose only. If the purpose for which a special fund was created has been fulfilled or abandoned, the balance, if any,
shall be transferred to the general funds of the Government.

Section 25.
(1) The Congress may not increase the appropriations recommended by the President for the operation of the
Government as specified in the budget. The form, content, and manner of preparation of the budget shall be
prescribed by law.
(2) No provision or enactment shall be embraced in the general appropriations bill unless it relates specifically to some
particular appropriation therein. Any such provision or enactment shall be limited in its operation to the appropriation
to which it relates.
(3) The procedure in approving appropriations for the Congress shall strictly follow the procedure for approving
appropriations for other departments and agencies.

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(4) A special appropriations bill shall specify the purpose for which it is intended, and shall be supported by funds
actually available as certified by the National Treasurer, or to be raised by a corresponding revenue proposal therein.
(5) No law shall be passed authorizing any transfer of appropriations; however, the President, the President of the Senate,
the Speaker of the House of Representatives, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, and the heads of Constitutional
Commissions may, by law, be authorized to augment any item in the general appropriations law for their respective
offices from savings in other items of their respective appropriations.
(6) Discretionary funds appropriated for particular officials shall be disbursed only for public purposes to be supported by
appropriate vouchers and subject to such guidelines as may be prescribed by law.
(7) If, by the end of any fiscal year, the Congress shall have failed to pass the general appropriations bill for the ensuing
fiscal year, the general appropriations law for the preceding fiscal year shall be deemed re-enacted and shall remain in
force and effect until the general appropriations bill is passed by the Congress.

Section 24. All appropriation, revenue or tariff bills, bills authorizing increase of the public debt, bills of local application,
and private bills, shall originate exclusively in the House of Representatives, but the Senate may propose or concur with
amendments.

ARTICLE 7 — EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT
Section 22. The President shall submit to the Congress, within thirty days from the opening of every regular session as
the basis of the general appropriations bill, a budget of expenditures and sources of financing, including receipts from
existing and proposed revenue measures.

APPROPRIATION AND EXPENDITURE OF PUBLIC FUNDS


‣ RULE — ONLY CONGRESS, BY LAW, MAY AUTHORIZE THE EXPENDITURE OF PUBLIC FUNDS.
‣ However, it may merely appropriate public funds, it cannot spend the money appropriated

‣ What is the power of appropriation?


‣ The word appropriate means to allot, assign, set apart or apply to a particular use or purpose. An appropriation in the
sense of the constitution means the setting apart a portion of the public funds for a public purpose. (Belgica vs Ochoa
2013)

‣ The power of appropriation involves —

1. Setting apart by law of a determinate or determinable sum from the public revenue

2. For specified public purposes. (Bengzon v. Secretary of Justice and Insular Auditor)
‣ It is the spending power, called the “power of the purse”, belongs to Congress, subject only to the veto power of the
President. While it is the President who proposes the budget, still, the final say on the matter of appropriation is
lodged in Congress. The power of appropriation carries with it the power to specify the project or activity to be funded
under the appropriation law. It can be as detailed and as broad as Congress wants it to be. (Philconsa vs Enriquez)

‣ What is the difference between “appropriation” and “expenditure” of public funds?


‣ Appropriation — merely involves authorization of allowance of public funds to a public purpose. This is legislative
function

‣ Expenditure — involves the actual use of public funds. This is an executive function

‣ What is an “appropriation law”?


‣ A statute the primary and specific purpose of which is to authorize the release of public funds from the Treasury.

‣ How are public funds appropriated?


‣ Only by law. No money shall be paid out of the treasury except in pursuance of an appropriation made by law.

‣ This is made passed by Congress either through a —

1. General Appropriations Law — passed annually, intended to provide for the financial operations of the entire
government during one fiscal period.

2. Special Appropriations Law — designed for a specific purpose.

‣ SEE — Belgica vs Ochoa, G.R. No. 208566, November 19, 2013


‣ No particular form of words is necessary for the purpose, if the intention to appropriate is plainly manifested. The
Constitution does not provide or prescribe any particular form of words or religious recitals in which an
authorization or appropriation by Congress shall be made, except that it be ‘made by law,‘" an appropriation law

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may be detailed and as broad as Congress wants it to be" for as long as the intent to appropriate may be gleaned
from the same.

‣ An appropriation may be made impliedly (as by past but subsisting legislations) as well as expressly for the current
fiscal year (as by enactment of laws by the present Congress), just as said appropriation may be made in general
as well as in specific terms.

‣ The Congressional authorization may be embodied in annual laws, such as a general appropriations act or in
special provisions of laws of general or special application which appropriate public funds for specific public
purposes, such as the questioned decrees.

‣ An appropriation measure is sufficient if the legislative intention clearly and certainly appears from the language
employed, whether in the past or in the present.

‣ The appropriation need NOT be the "primary and specific" purpose of the law in order for a valid appropriation law
to exist. If a legal provision designates a determinate or determinable amount of money and allocates the same for
a particular public purpose, then the legislative intent to appropriate becomes apparent and, hence, already
sufficient to satisfy the requirement of an "appropriation made by law" under contemplation of the Constitution.
(Belgica vs Ochoa 2013)
‣ SEE — Comelec v. Judge Quijano-Padilla and Photokina Marketing, G.R. No. 151992, September 18, 2002
‣ The existence of appropriations and the availability of funds are indispensable requisites to, or conditions sine qua
non for, the execution of government contracts. The import of the constitutional requirement for an appropriation is
to require the various agencies to limit their expenditure within the appropriations made by law for each fiscal year.
In this case, since the bid of Phokokina (P6.588B) was way beyond the amount appropriated by law (P1B) or funds
certified to to be available (P1.2B), there is no way the Comelec should enter into the contract. The Bids and
Awards Committee of the Comelec should have rejected the bid of Photokina for being excessive.

LIMITATIONS (EXPRESS AND IMPLIED) ON THE APPROPRIATIONS POWER OF CONGRESS


1. ANY APPROPRIATION BILL MUST ORIGINATE FROM THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES (ART. 24)
2. PUBLIC MONEY CAN BE APPROPRIATED ONLY FOR A PUBLIC PURPOSE
‣ This is an implicit limitation

‣ This limitation arises from the relation between the power to spend and the power to tax.

‣ The right of the legislature to appropriate public funds is correlative with its right to tax, and, under the constitutional
provisions against taxation except for public purposes. No appropriation of state funds can be made for other than a
public purpose.

‣ SEE — Pascual v. Secretary of Public Works and Communications, 110 Phil 331. (1960)
‣ The sum of 85,000 pesos is appropriated by Congress for a feeder road running through a private subdivision and
over property owned by a private individual. Subsequently, the feeder road is donated to the government. The
appropriation is invalid because it is not for a public purpose. The subsequent donation of the road did not validate
the law because the validity of a statute depends upon the powers of Congress at the time of its approval, and not
upon events occurring or acts performed subsequently.

3. THE SUM AUTHORIZED TO BE RELEASED MUST BE DETERMINATE, OR AT LEAST DETERMINABLE


‣ SEE — Guingona v. Carague, 196 SCRA 221
‣ In this case, the Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of the automatic appropriation for debt service under
the 1990 General Appropriations Act. According to the Court, the legislative intent in R.A. 4860, Sec. 31, P.D. 1177,
and P.D. 1967, is that the amount needed should be automatically set aside in order to enable the Republic of the
Philippines to pay the principal, interest, taxes and other normal banking charges on the loans, credit,
indebtedness when they become due without the need to enact a separate law appropriating funds therefor as the
need arises. Although the decrees do not state the specific amounts to be paid the amounts nevertheless are
made certain by the legislative parameters provided in the decrees. The mandate is to pay only the principal,
interest, taxes and other normal banking charges when they shall become due. No uncertainty arises in executive
implementation as the limit will be the exact amounts as shown by the books in the Treasury.

4. NO PUBLIC MONEY OR PROPERTY SHALL BE APPROPRIATED, APPLIED, PAID, OR EMPLOYED, DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY, FOR THE
USE, BENEFIT, OR SUPPORT OF ANY OF THE FOLLOWING (ART. 29[2])—

1. Sect, church, denomination, sectarian institution, or system of religion

2. Priest, preacher, minister, other religious teacher, or dignitary as such

‣ EXCEPT — When such priest, preacher, minister, or dignitary is assigned to the armed forces, or to any penal
institution, or government orphanage or leprosarium.

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5. ALL MONEY COLLECTED ON ANY TAX LEVIED FOR A SPECIAL PURPOSE SHALL BE PAID OUT FOR SUCH PURPOSE ONLY (ART.
29[3])
‣ Money collected on any tax levied for a special purpose is treated as a “special fund”

‣ What if the purpose for which a special fund was created has been fulfilled or abandoned?
‣ The balance, if any, shall be transferred to the general funds of the Government.

SPECIFIC LIMITATIONS ON APPROPRIATION MEASURES

GENERAL APPROPRIATION LAWS SPECIAL APPROPRIATION LAWS

1. Congress may not increase the appropriations recommended by the 1. A special appropriations bill
President for the operation of the Government as specified in the budget.
must specify the purpose for
which it is intended

2. The form, content, and manner of preparation of the budget shall be


prescribed by law.
2. It shall be supported by funds
actually available as certified by
3. No provision or enactment shall be embraced unless it relates specifically
the National Treasurer, or to be
to some particular appropriation therein. Any such provision or enactment
raised by a corresponding
shall be limited in its operation to the appropriation to which it relates.
revenue proposal therein

(This is intended to prevent riders, or irrelevant provisions included in the


bill to ensure its approval.)
3. All money collected on any tax
levied for a special purpose
4. Procedure for approving appropriations for Congress shall stnctly follow
shall be paid out for such
the procedure for approving appropriations for other departments and
purpose only
agencies.

5. Observe the rules on prohibition against transfer of appropriations.

6. Observe the rules on prohibition against appropriations for sectarian


benefit

PROCEDURE AND RULES IN THE LEGISLATION OF GENERAL APPROPRIATIONS LAWS


1. THE PRESIDENT PREPARES AN ANNUAL BUDGET AND SUBMITS IT TO CONGRESS (ART. 7, SEC. 22)
‣ The budget should be submitted within 30 days from the opening of every regular session

‣ The budget will serve as the basis of the general appropriations bill, a budget of expenditures and sources of
financing, including receipts from existing and proposed revenue measures.

‣ NOTE — The form, content, and manner of preparation of the budget shall be prescribed by law. (Art. 6, Sec. 25[1])

2. A GENERAL APPROPRIATIONS BILL MUST ORIGINATE FROM THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES (ART. 6, SEC. 24)
‣ But remember that the Senate may propose or concur with amendments — it can be changed and completely
modified by the Senate. The Senate can even pass its own version of the bill.

3. CONGRESS MAY NOT INCREASE THE APPROPRIATIONS RECOMMENDED BY THE PRESIDENT FOR THE OPERATION OF THE
GOVERNMENT AS SPECIFIED IN THE BUDGET (ART. 6, SEC. 25[1])
‣ Congress can only decrease the recommended budget

4. “RIDERS” ARE PROHIBITED TO BE INSERTED IN THE GENERAL APPROPRIATIONS BILL (ART. 6, SEC. 25[2])
‣ No provision or enactment shall be embraced in the general appropriations bill unless it relates specifically to some
particular appropriation therein.

‣ Any such provision or enactment shall be limited in its operation to the appropriation to which it relates.

‣ If it does not relate specifically to an appropriation, the provision is a “rider”

‣ What is a rider?
‣ It is a provision not germane to the subject-matter of the bill. (Garcia v. Mata 1975)

‣ In an appropriations bill, riders are provisions which are new and completely unrelated to an appropriation

‣ Such as — A provision in the General Appropriations Act for 1956-157 read “after the approval of this Act, and
when there is no emergency, no reserve officer of the Armed Forces of the Philippines may be called to a tour of
active duty for more than two years during any period of five consecutive years." The provision is invalid as it is a
“rider”. (Garcia v. Mata 1975)

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‣ NOTE — Riders are inappropriate provisions which may be the subject of a presidential veto (PHILCONSA vs Enriquez
1994)
5. THE PROCEDURE IN APPROVING APPROPRIATIONS FOR CONGRESS SHALL STRICTLY FOLLOW THE PROCEDURE FOR APPROVING
APPROPRIATIONS FOR OTHER DEPARTMENTS AND AGENCIES (ART. 6, SEC. 25[3])

‣ Thus, in making appropriations for itself, Congress must prescribe a procedure the same as those in others.

6. ANY TRANSFER OF APPROPRIATIONS IS NOT ALLOWED


‣ Generally, the transfer of items of appropriations cannot be inserted as provisions in appropriation laws.

‣ RATIONALE —

‣ EXCEPT — THE APPROPRIATIONS LAW MAY AUTHORIZE THE FOLLOWING OFFICIALS MAY TO AUGMENT ANY ITEM IN THE
SUCH APPROPRIATIONS LAW FOR THEIR RESPECTIVE OFFICES FROM SAVINGS IN OTHER ITEMS OF THEIR RESPECTIVE
APPROPRIATIONS —
a. President

b. Senate President

c. Speaker of the House of Representatives

d. Chief Justice of the Supreme Court

e. Heads of Constitutional Commissions

‣ NOTE — The purpose of augmenting an item and such transfer may be made only if there are savings from
another item in the appropriation of the government branch or constitutional body.

‣ Requirements of a valid augmentation of savings —


7. DISCRETIONARY FUNDS MAY BE APPROPRIATED SUBJECT TO THE FOLLOWING RESTRICTIONS —
a. It can be disbursed only for public purposes

b. Is should be supported by appropriate vouchers

c. It is subject to such guidelines as may be prescribed by law

DELINEATING THE FUNCTIONS OF THE EXECUTIVE AND LEGISLATIVE IN THE GENERAL APPROPRIATIONS LAW
‣ What are the respective roles of Congress and the President in the appropriation and expenditure of the national
budget?
1. PRIOR TO THE PASSAGE OF THE GENERAL APPROPRIATIONS LAW —
a. President — Creates a budget proposal and submits it to Congress
‣ See Art. 7, Sec. 22

b. Congress — Formulates and legislates the appropriation law


‣ Congress enters the picture when it deliberates or acts on the budget proposals of the President. Thereafter,
Congress, in the exercise of its own judgment and wisdom, formulates an appropriation act precisely following
the process established by the Constitution, which specifies that no money may be paid from the Treasury
except in accordance with an appropriation made by law.

‣ Upon approval and passage of the GAA, Congress‘ law-making role necessarily comes to an end and from
there the Executive‘s role of implementing the national budget begins. So as not to blur the constitutional
boundaries between them, Congress must not concern it self with details for implementation by the Executive.

2. AFTER THE PASSAGE OF THE GENERAL APPROPRIATIONS LAW


a. President — enforces and implements the law
‣ The enforcement of the national budget, as primarily contained in the GAA, is indisputably a function both
constitutionally assigned and properly entrusted to the Executive branch of government.

‣ The phase of budget execution "covers the various operational aspects of budgeting" and accordingly includes

i. The evaluation of work and financial plans for individual activities

ii. The regulation and release of funds

iii. All other related activities that comprise the budget execution cycle.

b. Congress — role is limited to oversight

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‣ From the moment the law becomes effective, any provision of law that empowers Congress or any of its
members to play any role in the implementation or enforcement of the law violates the principle of separation of
powers and is thus unconstitutional.

‣ However, that since the restriction only pertains to "any role in the implementation or enforcement of the law,"
Congress may still exercise its oversight function which is a mechanism of checks and balances that the
Constitution itself allows.

‣ But it must be made clear that Congress‘ role must be confined to mere oversight. Any post-enactment-
measure allowing legislator participation beyond oversight is bereft of any constitutional basis and hence,
tantamount to impermissible interference and/or assumption of executive functions.

‣ Any post-enactment congressional measure should be limited to scrutiny and investigation, any action or step
beyond that will undermine the separation of powers guaranteed by the Constitution. In particular,
âwphi1

congressional oversight must be confined to the following—

i. Scrutiny — based primarily on Congress‘ power of appropriation and the budget hearings conducted
inconnection with it, its power to ask heads of departments to appear before and be heard by either of its
Houses on any matter pertaining to their departments and its power of confirmation; and

ii. Investigation and Monitoring — of the implementation of laws pursuant to the power of Congress to
conduct inquiries in aid of legislation.

FAILURE ON PASSING A GENERAL APPROPRIATIONS LAW (AUTOMATIC APPROPRIATION RULE)


‣ On what budget does the government operate when Congress fails to approve a general appropriation bill? (If by
the end of any fiscal year, the Congress fails to pass the general appropriations bill)
‣ The general appropriations law for the preceding fiscal year is deemed re-enacted and shall remain in force and effect
until the general appropriations bill is passed by the Congress.

APPROPRIATION RESERVES
‣ Sec. 37 of the Administrative Code authorizes the Budget Secretary to establish reserves against appropriations to
provide for contingencies and emergencies which may arise during the year. This is merely expenditure deferral, not
suspension, since the agencies concerned can still draw on the reserves if the fiscal outlook improves.

IMPOUNDMENT
‣ What is “impoundment”?
‣ BERNAS — It is another way of exercising executive veto. Impoundment simply means refusal of the President to
spend funds already allocated by Congress for a specific purpose. There is no provision in the Constitution on the
subject.

‣ NACHURA — It is the refusal by the President for whatever reason to spend funds made available by Congress. It is
the failure to spend or obligate budget authority of any type. This power of the President is derived from Sec. 38 of the
Administrative Code of 1987 on suspension.

‣ SEE — Philippine Constitution Association v. Enriquez, 235 SCRA 544


‣ To the amount appropriated by Congress for the compensation and separation benefits of members of CAFGU was
attached a provision that "it shall be used for the compensation of CAFGlFs including the payment of their separation
benefit not exceeding one (1) year subsistence allowance for the 11,000 members who will be deactivated in 1994.
The President did not veto the provision but said instead in his veto message that the implementation of the provision
would be subject to his prior approval taking into consideration the peace and order situation in the affected localities.
Those who challenged the veto contended that the provision already effectively required the deactivation of the
CAFGLTs and that the President had no choice but to implement the law. The President on the other hand justified his
impoundment of the provision on the basis of his Commander-in-Chief powers and on the dangerous argument that
the duty to implement the law includes the duty to desist from implementing it when implementation would prejudice
public interest.

‣ BERNAS — The Supreme Court has refrained from passing judgment on the constitutionality of "impoundment" The
Court, however, found in the doctrine on "inappropriate provision" a way out of having to decide whether
impoundment was legal. It said that a provision for the disbandment of the CAFGU should be in a separate bill.

JURISPRUDENCE ON AUGMENTATION OF SAVINGS


‣ PHILIPPINE CONSTITUTION ASSOCIATION V. ENRIQUEZ, 235 SCRA 506, 521-523 (1994)

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‣ Petitioners assail the special provision allowing a member of Congress to realign his allocation for operational
expenses to any other expense category (Rollo, pp. 82-92), claiming that this practice is prohibited by Section 25(5),
Article VI of the Constitution. The proviso of said Article of the Constitution grants the President of the Senate and the
Speaker of the House of Representatives the power to augment items in an appropriation act for their respective
offices from savings in other items of their appropriations, whenever there is a law authorizing such augmentation.

‣ The special provision on realignment of the operating expenses of members of Congress is authorized by Section 16
of the General Provisions of the GAA of 1994, which provides: Expenditure Components. Except by act of the
Congress of the Philippines, no change or modification shall be made in the expenditure items authorized in this Act
and other appropriation laws unless in cases of augmentations from savings in appropriations as authorized under
Section 25(5) of Article VI of the Constitution
‣ Petitioners argue that the Senate President and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, but not the individual
members of Congress are the ones authorized to realign the savings as appropriated.

‣ Under the Special Provisions applicable to the Congress of the Philippines, the members of Congress only determine
the necessity of the realignment of the savings in the allotments for their operating expenses. They are in the best
position to do so because they are the ones who know whether there are savings available in some items and whether
there are deficiencies in other items of their operating expenses that need augmentation. However, it is the Senate
President and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, as the case may be, who shall approve the realignment.
Before giving their stamp of approval, these two officials will have to see to it that: (1) The funds to be realigned or
transferred are actually savings in the items of expenditures from which the same are to be taken; and (2) The transfer
or realignment is for the purposes of augmenting the items of expenditure to which said transfer or realignment is to
be made.

‣ DEMETRIA VS ALBA, 148 SCRA 208 (1987)


‣ Paragraph 1 of Section 44 of P.D. 1177 says: "The President shall have the authority to transfer any fund, appropriated
for the different departments, bureaus, offices and agencies of the executive department, which are included in the
General Appropriations Act, to any program, project or activity of any department, bureau, or office included in the
General Appropriations Act or approved after its enactment."

‣ Court held this as invalid. It pointed out that P.D. 1177 empowered the President "to indiscriminately transfer funds,
without regard as to whether or not the funds to be transferred are actually savings in the item from which the same
are to be taken," the Court declared the law unconstitutional.

‣ The Court explained that exception to the prohibition on transfers of appropriation is is intended "to afford the heads
of the different branches of the government and those of the Constitutional Commissions considerable flexibility in the
use of public funds and resources" but that the leeway granted is limited.” The purpose of augmenting an item and
such transfer may be made only if there are savings from another item in the appropriation of the government branch
or constitutional body.

‣ The President cannot indiscriminately transfer funds from one department, bureau, office or agency of the Executive
Department to any program, project or activity of any department, bureau or office included in the General
Appropriations Act or approved after its enactment, without regard to whether the funds to be transferred are actually
savings in the item from which the same are to be taken, or whether or not the transfer is for the purpose of
augmenting the item to which the transfer is to be made.

‣ GONZALES VS MACARAIG, G.R. NO. 87636. NOVEMBER 19, 1990


‣ Section 55 of the Appropriations Act of 1989 reads — SEC. 55. Prohibition Against the Restoration or Increase of
Recommended Appropriations Disapproved and/or Reduced by Congress: No item of appropriation recommended by
the President in the Budget submitted to Congress pursuant to Article VII, Section 22 of the Constitution which has
been disapproved or reduced in this Act shall be restored or increased by the use of appropriations authorized for
other purposes by augmentation. An item of appropriation for any purpose recommended by the President in the
Budget shall be deemed to have been disapproved by Congress if no corresponding appropriation for the specific
purpose is provided in this Act.”
‣ Noteworthy is the fact that the power to augment from savings lies dormant until authorized by law. Once given, the
heads of the different branches of the Government and those of the Constitutional Commissions are afforded
considerable flexibility in the use of public funds and resources (Demetria v. Alba, supra). The doctrine of separation of
powers is in no way endangered because the transfer is made within a department (or branch of government) and not
from one department (branch) to another

‣ When Sections 55 (FY ‘89) and 16 (FY ‘90), therefore, prohibit the restoration or increase by augmentation of
appropriations disapproved or reduced by Congress, they impair the constitutional and statutory authority of the
President and other key officials to augment any item or any appropriation from savings in the interest of expediency
and efficiency. The exercise of such authority in respect of disapproved or reduced items by no means vests in the
Executive the power to rewrite the entire budget, as petitioners contend, the leeway granted being delimited to
transfers within the department or branch concerned, the sourcing to come only from savings.

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‣ More importantly, it strikes us, too, that for such a special power as that of augmentation from savings, the same is
merely incorporated in the General Appropriations Bill. An Appropriations Bill is "one the primary and specific aim of
which is to make appropriation of money from the public treasury”. It is a legislative authorization of receipts and
expenditures. The power of augmentation from savings, on the other hand, can by no means be considered a specific
appropriation of money. It is a non-appropriation item inserted in an appropriation measure. chanrobles law library : red

‣ The same thing must be said of Section 55 (FY ‘89), taken in conjunction with Section 12, and Section 16 (FY ‘90),
which prohibit the restoration or increase by augmentation of appropriations disapproved and/or reduced by
Congress. They are non-appropriation items, an appropriation being a setting apart by law of a certain sum from the
public revenue for a specific purpose. It bears repeating that they are more of a substantive expression of a legislative
objective to restrict the power of augmentation granted to the President and other key officials. They are actually
matters of general law and more properly the subject of a separate legislation that will embody, define and delimit the
scope of the special power of augmentation from savings instead of being inappropriately incorporated annually in the
Appropriation Act. To sanction this practice would be to give the Legislature the freedom to grant or withhold the
power from the Executive and other officials, and thus put in yearly jeopardy the exercise of that power.

‣ SANCHEZ VS COMMISSION ON AUDIT, G.R. NO. 127545, APRIL 23, 2008


‣ There are two essential requisites in order that a transfer of appropriation with the corresponding funds may legally be
effected.

1. There must be savings in the programmed appropriation of the transferring agency.


2. There must be an existing item, project or activity with an appropriation in the receiving agency to which the
savings will be transferred.

‣ Actual savings is a sine qua non to a valid transfer of funds from one government agency to another. The word actual
denotes that something is real or substantial, or exists presently in fact as opposed to something which is merely
theoretical, possible, potential or hypothetical.

‣ As a case in point, the Chief Justice himself transfers funds only when there are actual savings, e.g., from unfilled
positions in the Judiciary. The thesis that savings may and should be presumed from the mere transfer of funds is
plainly anathema to the doctrine laid down in Demetria v. Alba as it makes the prohibition against transfer of
appropriations the general rule rather than the stringent exception the constitutional framers clearly intended it to be.
It makes a mockery of Demetria v. Alba as it would have the Court allow the mere expectancy of savings to be
transferred.

‣ Contrary to another submission in this case, the President, Chief Justice, Senate President, and the heads of
constitutional commissions need not first prove and declare the existence of savings before transferring funds, the
Court in Philconsa v. Enriquez, supra, categorically declared that the Senate President and the Speaker of the House
of Representatives, as the case may be, shall approve the realignment (of savings). However, [B]efore giving their
stamp of approval, these two officials will have to see to it that: (1) The funds to be realigned or transferred are actually
savings in the items of expenditures from which the same are to be taken; and (2) The transfer or realignment is for the
purpose of augmenting the items of expenditure to which said transfer or realignment is to be made.

‣ As it is, the fact that the permissible transfers contemplated by Section 25(5), Article VI of the 1987 Constitution would
occur entirely within the framework of the executive, legislative, judiciary, or the constitutional commissions, already
makes wanton and unmitigated malversation of public funds all too easy, without the Court abetting it by ruling that
transfer of funds ipso facto denotes the existence of savings.

‣ Precisely, the restriction on the transfer of funds, and similar constitutional limitations such as the specification of
purpose for special appropriations bill, the restriction on disbursement of discretionary funds, the conditions on the
release of money from the Treasury, among others, were all safeguards designed to forestall abuses in the expenditure
of public funds

‣ In this case, the records unmistakably point to the reality that there were no savings at the time of the questioned
transfer. To begin with, the first disallowed voucher in the amount of P300,000.00 was paid under Check No. 160404
dated 31 January 1992. The records indicate that the second transfer occurred on 28 April 1992. Presumably, the
disallowed amount was remitted to and spent by the ad hoc task force within the first two quarters of fiscal year 1992.
There could not have been savings from the Fund on 31 January 1992 because the 1992 GAA took effect only on 1
January 1992 or 30 days before. Obviously, the amount transferred from the Fund did not constitute savings as there
were no such savings at the time of the transfer. It is preposterous to pronounce that savings already existed as early
as 31 January 1992. It is even more ridiculous to claim that savings may be presumed from the mere transfer of funds.
The fact that the subsequent years appropriations acts, i.e., the 1993 and 1994 GAA, provided an appropriation for
the Capability Building Program, moreover, signifies that there were no savings from the Fund from the prior years
appropriation in the 1992 GAA that could have been validly transferred. There is no question that there were no
savings from the Fund at the time of the transfer. The Court cannot hold on to the disputable presumptions that official
duty had been regularly performed and that the law had been obeyed.

‣ ARAULLO VS AQUINO III, G.R. NO. 209287, JULY 1, 2014

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‣ Although executive discretion and flexibility are necessary in the execution of the budget, any transfer of appropriated
funds should conform to Section 25(5), Article VI of the Constitution

‣ eWe begin this dissection by reiterating that Congress cannot anticipate all issues and needs that may come into play
once the budget reaches its execution stage. Executive discretion is necessary at that stage to achieve a sound fiscal
administration and assure effective budget implementation. The heads of offices, particularly the President, require
flexibility in their operations under performance budgeting to enable them to make whatever adjustments are needed
to meet established work goals under changing conditions. In particular, the power to transfer funds can give the
President the flexibility to meet unforeseen events that may otherwise impede the efficient implementation of the PAPs
set by Congress in the GAA.

‣ Congress has traditionally allowed much flexibility to the President in allocating funds pursuant to the GAAs,
particularly when the funds are grouped to form lump sum accounts. It is assumed that the agencies of the
Government enjoy more flexibility when the GAAs provide broader appropriation items. This flexibility comes in the
form of policies that the Executive may adopt during the budget execution phase. The DAP – as a strategy to improve
the country’s economic position – was one policy that the President decided to carry out in order to fulfill his mandate
under the GAAs.

‣ Denying to the Executive flexibility in the expenditure process would be counterproductive. In Presidential Spending
Power, Prof. Louis Fisher, an American constitutional scholar whose specialties have included budget policy, has
justified extending discretionary authority to the Executive thusly: The impulse to deny discretionary authority
altogether should be resisted. There are many number of reasons why obligations and outlays by administrators may
have to differ from appropriations by legislators. Appropriations are made many months, and sometimes years, in
advance of expenditures. Congress acts with imperfect knowledge in trying to legislate in fields that are highly
technical and constantly undergoing change. New circumstances will develop to make obsolete and mistaken the
decisions reached by Congress at the appropriation stage. It is not practicable for Congress to adjust to each new
development by passing separate supplemental appropriation bills. Were Congress to control expenditures by
confining administrators to narrow statutory details, it would perhaps protect its power of the purse but it would not
protect the purse itself. The realities and complexities of public policy require executive discretion for the sound
management of public funds. The expenditure process, by its very nature, requires substantial discretion for
administrators. They need to exercise judgment and take responsibility for their actions, but those actions ought to be
directed toward executing congressional, not administrative policy. Let there be discretion, but channel it and use it to
satisfy the programs and priorities established by Congress.
‣ In contrast, by allowing to the heads of offices some power to transfer funds within their respective offices, the
Constitution itself ensures the fiscal autonomy of their offices, and at the same time maintains the separation of
powers among the three main branches of the Government. The Court has recognized this, and emphasized so in
Bengzon v. Drilon, viz: The Judiciary, the Constitutional Commissions, and the Ombudsman must have the
independence and flexibility needed in the discharge of their constitutional duties. The imposition of restrictions and
constraints on the manner the independent constitutional offices allocate and utilize the funds appropriated for their
operations is anathema to fiscal autonomy and violative not only of the express mandate of the Constitution but
especially as regards the Supreme Court, of the independence and separation of powers upon which the entire fabric
of our constitutional system is based.

‣ In the case of the President, the power to transfer funds from one item to another within the Executive has not been
the mere offshoot of established usage, but has emanated from law itself. It has existed since the time of the
American Governors-General. Act No. 1902 (An Act authorizing the Governor-General to direct any unexpended
balances of appropriations be returned to the general fund of the Insular Treasury and to transfer from the general
fund moneys which have been returned thereto), passed on May 18, 1909 by the First Philippine Legislature,135 was
the first enabling law that granted statutory authority to the President to transfer funds. The authority was without any
limitation, for the Act explicitly empowered the Governor-General to transfer any unexpended balance of
appropriations for any bureau or office to another, and to spend such balance as if it had originally been appropriated
for that bureau or office.

‣ From 1916 until 1920, the appropriations laws set a cap on the amounts of funds that could be transferred, thereby
limiting the power to transfer funds. Only 10% of the amounts appropriated for contingent or miscellaneous expenses
could be transferred to a bureau or office, and the transferred funds were to be used to cover deficiencies in the
appropriations also for miscellaneous expenses of said bureau or office.

‣ In 1921, the ceiling on the amounts of funds to be transferred from items under miscellaneous expenses to any other
item of a certain bureau or office was removed.

‣ During the Commonwealth period, the power of the President to transfer funds continued to be governed by the GAAs
despite the enactment of the Constitution in 1935. It is notable that the 1935 Constitution did not include a provision
on the power to transfer funds. At any rate, a shift in the extent of the President’s power to transfer funds was again
experienced during this era, with the President being given more flexibility in implementing the budget. The GAAs
provided that the power to transfer all or portions of the appropriations in the Executive Department could be made in
the "interest of the public, as the President may determine.”

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‣ In its time, the 1971 Constitutional Convention wanted to curtail the President’s seemingly unbounded discretion in
transferring funds. Its Committee on the Budget and Appropriation proposed to prohibit the transfer of funds among
the separate branches of the Government and the independent constitutional bodies, but to allow instead their
respective heads to augment items of appropriations from savings in their respective budgets under certain
limitations. The clear intention of the Convention was to further restrict, not to liberalize, the power to transfer
appropriations. Thus, the Committee on the Budget and Appropriation initially considered setting stringent limitations
on the power to augment, and suggested that the augmentation of an item of appropriation could be made "by not
more than ten percent if the original item of appropriation to be augmented does not exceed one million pesos, or by
not more than five percent if the original item of appropriation to be augmented exceeds one million pesos.”But two
members of the Committee objected to the P1,000,000.00 threshold, saying that the amount was arbitrary and might
not be reasonable in the future. The Committee agreed to eliminate the P1,000,000.00 threshold, and settled on the
ten percent limitation.

‣ In the end, the ten percent limitation was discarded during the plenary of the Convention, which adopted the following
final version under Section 16, Article VIII of the 1973 Constitution, to wit: (5) No law shall be passed authorizing any
transfer of appropriations; however, the President, the Prime Minister, the Speaker, the Chief Justice of the Supreme
Court, and the heads of Constitutional Commissions may by law be authorized to augment any item in the general
appropriations law for their respective offices from savings in other items of their respective appropriations.

‣ The 1973 Constitution explicitly and categorically prohibited the transfer of funds from one item to another, unless
Congress enacted a law authorizing the President, the Prime Minister, the Speaker, the Chief Justice of the Supreme
Court, and the heads of the Constitutional omissions to transfer funds for the purpose of augmenting any item from
savings in another item in the GAA of their respective offices. The leeway was limited to augmentation only, and was
further constricted by the condition that the funds to be transferred should come from savings from another item in
the appropriation of the office.

‣ On July 30, 1977, President Marcos issued PD No. 1177, providing in its Section 44 that: Section 44. Authority to
Approve Fund Transfers. The President shall have the authority to transfer any fund appropriated for the different
departments, bureaus, offices and agencies of the Executive Department which are included in the General
Appropriations Act, to any program, project, or activity of any department, bureau or office included in the General
Appropriations Act or approved after its enactment. The President shall, likewise, have the authority to augment any
appropriation of the Executive Department in the General Appropriations Act, from savings in the appropriations of
another department, bureau, office or agency within the Executive Branch, pursuant to the provisions of Article VIII,
Section 16 (5) of the Constitution.

‣ In Demetria v. Alba, however, the Court struck down the first paragraph of Section 44 for contravening Section 16(5)of
the 1973 Constitution, ruling: Paragraph 1 of Section 44 of P.D. No. 1177 unduly over-extends the privilege granted
under said Section 16. It empowers the President to indiscriminately transfer funds from one department, bureau,
office or agency of the Executive Department to any program, project or activity of any department, bureau or office
included in the General Appropriations Act or approved after its enactment, without regard as to whether or not the
funds to be transferred are actually savings in the item from which the same are to be taken, or whether or not the
transfer is for the purpose of augmenting the item to which said transfer is to be made. It does not only completely
disregard the standards set in the fundamental law, thereby amounting to an undue delegation of legislative powers,
but likewise goes beyond the tenor thereof. Indeed, such constitutional infirmities render the provision in question null
and void.

‣ It is significant that Demetria was promulgated 25 days after the ratification by the people of the 1987 Constitution,
whose Section 25(5) of Article VI is identical to Section 16(5), Article VIII of the 1973 Constitution.

‣ The foregoing history makes it evident that the Constitutional Commission included Section 25(5), supra, to keep a
tight rein on the exercise of the power to transfer funds appropriated by Congress by the President and the other high
officials of the Government named therein.

‣ The Court stated in Nazareth v. Villar: In the funding of current activities, projects, and programs, the general rule
should still be that the budgetary amount contained in the appropriations bill is the extent Congress will determine as
sufficient for the budgetary allocation for the proponent agency. The only exception is found in Section 25 (5), Article
VI of the Constitution, by which the President, the President of the Senate, the Speaker of the House of
Representatives, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, and the heads of Constitutional Commissions are authorized
to transfer appropriations to augmentany item in the GAA for their respective offices from the savings in other items of
their respective appropriations. The plain language of the constitutional restriction leaves no room for the petitioner’s
posture, which we should now dispose of as untenable.

‣ It bears emphasizing that the exception in favor of the high officials named in Section 25(5), Article VI of the
Constitution limiting the authority to transfer savings only to augment another item in the GAA is strictly but
reasonably construed as exclusive. As the Court has expounded in Lokin, Jr. v. Commission on Elections: When the
statute itself enumerates the exceptions to the application of the general rule, the exceptions are strictly but
reasonably construed. The exceptions extend only as far as their language fairly warrants, and all doubts should be
resolved in favor of the general provision rather than the exceptions. Where the general rule is established by a statute
with exceptions, none but the enacting authority can curtail the former. Not even the courts may add to the latter by

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implication, and it is a rule that an express exception excludes all others, although it is always proper in determining
the applicability of the rule to inquire whether, in a particular case, it accords with reason and justice.

‣ The appropriate and natural office of the exception is to exempt something from the scope of the general words of a
statute, which is otherwise within the scope and meaning of such general words. Consequently, the existence of an
exception in a statute clarifies the intent that the statute shall apply to all cases not excepted. Exceptions are subject
to the rule of strict construction; hence, any doubt will be resolved in favor of the general provision and against the
exception. Indeed, the liberal construction of a statute will seem to require in many circumstances that the exception,
by which the operation of the statute is limited or abridged, should receive a restricted construction.

‣ Accordingly, we should interpret Section 25(5), supra, in the context of a limitation on the President’s discretion over
the appropriations during the Budget Execution Phase.

‣ The transfer of appropriated funds, to be valid under Section 25(5), supra, must be made upon a concurrence of the
following requisites, namely:

1. There is a law authorizing the President, the President of the Senate, the Speaker of the House of
Representatives, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, and the heads of the Constitutional Commissions to
transfer funds within their respective offices;

2. The funds to be transferred are savings generated from the appropriations for their respective offices; and

3. The purpose of the transfer is to augment an item in the general appropriations law for their respective offices.

JURISPRUDENCE ON DISCRETIONARY FUNDS


‣ PHILIPPINE CONSTITUTION ASSOCIATION V. ENRIQUEZ, 235 SCRA 506, 521-523 (1994)
‣ BERNAS — The controversy over the Countrywide Development Fund of 1994, which is the deodorized appellation of
the traditional "pork barrel," was resolved by the Court in a manner which might be described as tongue-in-cheek.
The General Appropriation Act set aside an amount to be used for "infrastructure, purchase of ambulances and
computers and other priority projects and activities, and credit facilities to qualified beneficiaries as proposed and
identified by officials concerned." The "officials concerned" were all Representatives, Senators and the Vice-President
who were each allocated an amount. The law was challenged on the ground that the authority given to the
enumerated officials to propose and identify projects and activities was an encroachment into legislative power. In
upholding the validity of the law, the Court said that Congress itself had specified the uses of the fund and that the
power given to the enumerated officials was merely recommendatory to the President who could approve or
disapprove the recommendation. The Court praised the scheme as "imaginative" and "innovative!"

‣ BELGICA VS OCHOA, G.R. NO. 208566, NOVEMBER 19, 2013


‣ What is the “pork-barrel system”?
‣ The origin of the name may be traced to a degrading ritual to which slaves were subjected. At a fixed day and
hour, a barrel stuffed with pork would be rolled out and a multitude of black slaves, herded together in a strategic
corner of the ranch or plantation, would cast their famished bodies into the porcine feast to assuage their hunger
with morsels coming from the generosity of their well-fed master.

‣ The Court defines the Pork Barrel System as the collective body of rules and practices that govern the manner by
which lump-sum, discretionary funds, primarily intended for local projects, are utilized through the respective
participations of the Legislative and Executive branches of government, including its members. The Pork Barrel
System involves two (2) kinds of lump-sum discretionary funds:

1. Congressional Pork Barrel — a kind of lump-sum, discretionary fund wherein legislators, either individually
or collectively organized into committees, are able to effectively control certain aspects of the fund’s utilization
through various post-enactment measures and/or practices. In particular, petitioners consider the PDAF, as it
appears under the 2013 GAA, as Congressional Pork Barrel since it is, inter alia, a post- enactment measure
that allows individual legislators to wield a collective power

2. Presidential Pork Barrel — a kind of lump-sum, discretionary fund which allows the President to determine
the manner of its utilization. For reasons earlier stated, the Court shall delimit the use of such term to refer only
to the Malampaya Funds and the Presidential Social Fund.

‣ Are the Congressional "pork barrel" provisions in the annual budget constitutional?
‣ NO. The court here abandoned its ruling in Philconsa which sanctioned the conduct of legislator identification on
the guise that the same is merely recommendatory. The court ruled that the PDAF mechanism violates the
following constitutional precepts —

1. Separation of Powers — It allows members of Congress to perform the executive function of spending
money appropriated by allowing legislators to participate in the post-enactment phases of project
implementation. This is through —

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a. Project identification — At its core, legislators,may it be through project lists, prior consultations or
program menus, have been consistently accorded post-enactment authority to identify the projects they
desire to be funded through various Congressional Pork Barrel allocations. Special Provision 1 embodies
the program menu feature which allows individual legislators to identify PDAF projects for as long as the
identified project falls under a general program listed in the said menu. Special Provision 2 provides that
the implementing agencies shall, within 90 days from the GAA is passed, submit to Congress a more
detailed priority list, standard or design prepared and submitted by implementing agencies from which the
legislator may make his choice. The same provision further authorizes legislators to identify PDAF projects
outside his district for as long as the representative of the district concerned concurs in writing.
Meanwhile, Special Provision 3 clarifies that PDAF projects refer to "projects to be identified by
legislators"and thereunder provides the allocation limit for the total amount of projects identified by each
legislator. Finally, paragraph 2 of Special Provision 4 requires that any modification and revision of the
project identification "shall be submitted to the House Committee on Appropriations and the Senate
Committee on Finance for favorable endorsement to the DBM or the implementing agency, as the case
may be. In fact, the identification of the legislator constitutes a mandatory requirement before his PDAF
can be tapped as a funding source, thereby highlighting the indispensability of the said act to the entire
budget execution process

b. Fund release and realignment — Special Provision 5 explicitly states that "all request for release of
funds shall be supported by the documents prescribed under Special Provision No. 1 and favorably
endorsed by House Committee on Appropriations and the Senate Committee on Finance. Special
Provision 4 explicitly states, among others, that "any realignment of funds shall be submitted to the House
Committee on Appropriations and the Senate Committee on Finance for favorable endorsement to the
DBM or the implementing agency, as the case may be.

‣ These post-enactment measures which govern the areas of project identification, fund release and fund
realignment are not related to functions of congressional oversight and, hence, allow legislators to intervene
and/or assume duties that properly belong to the sphere of budget execution. Indeed, by virtue of the
foregoing, legislators have been, in one form or another, authorized to participate in the various operational
aspects of budgeting," including "the evaluation of work and financial plans for individual activities" and the
"regulation and release of funds" in violation of the separation of powers principle. That the said authority is
treated as merely recommendatory in nature does not alter its unconstitutional tenor since the prohibition,
to repeat, covers any role in the implementation or enforcement of the law.

2. Non-Delegability of Legislative Powers — this is because the PDAF mechanism —

a. Unduly delegates legislative power to the individual members of Congress themselves — the 2013
PDAF Article, insofar as it confers post-enactment identification authority to individual legislators, violates
the principle of non-delegability since said legislators are effectively allowed to individually exercise the
power of appropriation, which is lodged in Congress. Essentially, under the 2013 PDAF Article, individual
legislators are given a personal lump-sum fund from which they are able to dictate (a) how much from such
fund would go to (b) a specific project or beneficiary that they themselves also determine. As these two (2)
acts comprise the exercise of the power of appropriation, undoubtedly, said legislators have been
conferred the power to legislate which the Constitution does not, however, allow. Thus, keeping with the
principle ofnon-delegability of legislative power, the Court hereby declares the 2013 PDAF Article, as well
as all other forms of Congressional Pork Barrel which contain the similar legislative identification feature, as
unconstitutional.

b. Unduly delegates legislative power to the implementing agencies involved — such arrangement also
raises non-delegability issues considering that the implementing authority would still have to determine,
again, both the actual amount to be expended and the actual purpose of the appropriation. Since the
foregoing determinations constitute the integral aspects of the power to appropriate, the implementing
authority would, in effect, be exercising legislative prerogatives in violation of the principle of non-
delegability.

3. System of Checks and Balances — It diminishes the item-veto power of the President. Such power serves
as a check on the legislative branch. For the President to exercise his item-veto power, it necessarily follows
that there exists a proper "item" which may be the object of the veto. What beckons constitutional infirmity are
appropriations which merely provide for a singular lump-sum amount to be tapped as a source of funding for
multiple purposes. Since such appropriation type necessitates the further determination of both the actual
amount to be expended and the actual purpose of the appropriation which must still be chosen from the
multiple purposes stated in the law, it cannot be said that the appropriation law already indicates a "specific
appropriation of money and hence, without a proper line-item which the President may veto. As a practical
result, the President would then be faced with the predicament of either vetoing the entire appropriation if he
finds some of its purposes wasteful or undesirable, or approving the entire appropriation so as not to hinder
some of its legitimate purposes.

‣ Are the Presidential "pork barrel" provisions in the annual budget constitutional?

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‣ NO. It violates the principle of non-delegation of legislative powers for violation of the sufficient standards test

1. Malaympaya Fund — While the designation of a determinate or determinable amount for a particular public
purpose is sufficient for a legal appropriation to exist, the appropriation law must contain adequate legislative
guidelines if the same law delegates rule-making authority to the Executive either for the purpose of (a) filling
up the details of the law for its enforcement, known as supplementary rule-making, or (b) ascertaining facts to
bring the law into actual operation, referred to as contingent rule-making. The phrase "and for such other
purposes as may be hereafter directed by the President" under Section 8 of PD 910 constitutes an undue
delegation of legislative power insofar as it does not lay down a sufficient standard to adequately determine
the limits of the President‘s authority with respect to the purpose for which the Malampaya Funds may be
used. As it reads, the said phrase gives the President wide latitude to use the Malampaya Funds for any other
purpose he may direct and, in effect, allows him to unilaterally appropriate public funds beyond the purview of
the law. While Section 8 of PD 910 may have passed the completeness test since the policy of energy
development is clearly deducible from its text, the phrase "and for such other purposes as may be hereafter
directed by the President" under the same provision of law should nonetheless be stricken down as
unconstitutional as it lies independently unfettered by any sufficient standard of the delegating law.

2. Presidential Social Fund — Section 12 of PD 1869, as amended, indicates that the Presidential Social Fund
may be used "to first, finance the priority infrastructure development projects and second, to finance the
restoration of damaged or destroyed facilities due to calamities, as may be directed and authorized by the
Office of the President of the Philippines." The Court finds that while the second indicated purpose adequately
curtails the authority of the President to spend the Presidential Social Fund only for restoration purposes
which arise from calamities, the first indicated purpose, however, gives him carte blanche authority to use the
same fund for any infrastructure project he may so determine as a "priority". Verily, the law does not supply a
definition of "priority in frastructure development projects" and hence, leaves the President without any
guideline to construe the same. To note, the delimitation of a project as one of "infrastructure" is too broad of
a classification since the said term could pertain to any kind of facility. In fine, the phrase "to finance the
priority infrastructure development projects" must be stricken down as unconstitutional since – similar to the
above-assailed provision under Section 8 of PD 910 – it lies independently unfettered by any sufficient
standard of the delegating law.

POWER OF TAXATION; TAX LIMITATIONS AND EXEMPTIONS

Section 28.
(1) The rule of taxation shall be uniform and equitable. The Congress shall evolve a progressive system of taxation.
(2) The Congress may, by law, authorize the President to fix within specified limits, and subject to such limitations and
restrictions as it may impose, tariff rates, import and export quotas, tonnage and wharfage dues, and other duties or
imposts within the framework of the national development program of the Government.
(3) Charitable institutions, churches and personages or convents appurtenant thereto, mosques, non-profit cemeteries,
and all lands, buildings, and improvements, actually, directly, and exclusively used for religious, charitable, or
educational purposes shall be exempt from taxation.
(4) No law granting any tax exemption shall be passed without the concurrence of a majority of all the Members of the
Congress.

ARTICLE 14 — EDUCATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY, ARTS, CULTURE AND SPORTS
Section 4.
(3) All revenues and assets of non-stock, non-profit educational institutions used actually, directly, and exclusively for
educational purposes shall be exempt from taxes and duties. Upon the dissolution or cessation of the corporate
existence of such institutions, their assets shall be disposed of in the manner provided by law. Proprietary
educational institutions, including those cooperatively owned, may likewise be entitled to such exemptions, subject
to the limitations provided by law, including restrictions on dividends and provisions for reinvestment.
(4) Subject to conditions prescribed by law, all grants, endowments, donations, or contributions used actually, directly,
and exclusively for educational purposes shall be exempt from tax.

INHERENT POWERS OF GOVERNMENT


1. Police Power

2. Power of Taxation

3. Power of Eminent Domain

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PURPOSE OF TAXATION
‣ What is the purpose of the power to tax?—
1. Revenue purposes
‣ A state cannot exist without taxation. It is the lifeblood of society.

2. Regulatory purposes
‣ The obvious, primary, and specific purpose of the power to tax is to raise revenue. However, from the earliest days
of the history of the power of taxation, the power to tax has been recognized as an instrument of national
economic and social policy. It has, for instance, been used as an instrument for the extermination of undesirable
activities and enterprises. In the celebrated words of Justice Marshall, the power to tax involves the power to
destroy. (McCulloch v. Maryland U.S. 1819)
‣ The power to tax has also been used as a tool for regulation. For the purpose of regulating property, the State can
choose to exercise its police power or its power to tax. "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 principle
applies even though the revenue obtained is obviously negligible, or the revenue purpose of the tax may be
secondary. (United States v. Sanchez U.S. 1950)

3. Public interest purposes


‣ Another aspect of the power to tax is what the United States Supreme Court has characterized as "the power to
keep alive." This is the foundation for the imposition of tariffs designed for the encouragement and protection of
locally produced goods against competition from imports. "The enactment and enforcement of a number of
customs revenue laws drawn with a motive of maintaining a system of protection, since the revenue law of 1789,
are matters of history . . . whatever we may think of the wisdom of a protection policy." (Hampton and Co. v.
United States U.S. 1928)

LIMITATIONS ON THE POWER OF TAXATION


1. IT MUST NOT VIOLATE DUE PROCESS
‣ The power to tax is an attribute of sovereignty. In fact, it is the strongest of all the powers of government. But for all its
plenitude, the power to tax is not unconfined as there are restrictions. Adversely affecting as it does property rights,
both due process and equal protection clauses of the Constitution may properly be invoked to invalidate in
appropriate cases a revenue measure. If it were otherwise, there would be truth to the 1903 dictum of Chief Justice
Marshall that 'the power to tax involves the power to destroy. The web of unreality spun from Marshall's famous
dictum was brushed away by one stroke of Mr. Justice Holmes' pen, thus: The power to tax is not the power to
destroy while this Court sits.' 'So it is in the Philippines. (Sison, Jr. v. Ancheta 1984)
‣ In the same vein, the due process clause may be invoked where a taxing statute is so arbitrary that it finds no support
in the Constitution. An obvious example is where it cam be shown to amount to confiscation of property. That would
be a clear abuse of power (Sison, Jr. v. Ancheta 1984)
‣ Where a tax measure becomes so unconscionable and unjust as to amount to confiscation of property, courts will not
hesitate to strike it down, for, despite all its plenitude, the power to tax cannot override constitutional prescriptions.
(Tan v. del Rosario, Jr.)

2. IT SHOULD ONLY BE EXERCISED FOR PUBLIC PURPOSES


‣ The power to tax exists for the general welfare. Hence implicit in the power is the limitation that it should be exercised
only for a public purpose.

3. IT MUST BE UNIFORM AND EQUITABLE (EQUAL PROTECTION)


‣ “Uniformity" in the Constitution does "not signify an intrinsic, but simply a geographical uniformity. A tax is uniform,
within the Constitutional requirement, when it operates with the same force and effect in every place where the
subject of it is found. (Churchill v. Conception 1916)
‣ The requirement of "uniformity" has been interpreted by Philippine jurisprudence as equivalent to the requirement of
valid classification under the equal protection clause. (Pepsi Cola Bottling Co. v. City of Butuan, 1968)
‣ It means that —

a. It means that the standards that are used therefore are substantial and not arbitrary

b. The categorization is germane to achieve the legislative purpose

c. The law applies, all things being equal, to both present and future conditions, and

d. The classification applies equally well to all those belonging to the same class.

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‣ BERNAS — The word "equitable" seems to add nothing except by way of emphasis.

4. IT MUST BE PROGRESSIVE, AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE


‣ A tax system is progressive when the rate increases as the tax base increases. The explicit mention of progressive
taxation in the Constitution reflects the wish of the Commission that the legislature should use the power of taxation
as an instrument for a more equitable distribution of wealth.

‣ NOTE — This is not mandatory, there are regressive taxes imposed, such as the value-added tax.
‣ What Congress is required by the Constitution to do is only to "evolve a progressive system of taxation." This is a
directive to Congress, just like the directive to it to give priority to the enactment of laws for the enhancement of
human dignity and the reduction of social, economic and political inequalities or for the promotion of the right to
"quality education." These provisions are put in the Constitution as moral incentives to legislation, not as judicially
enforceable rights. Thus, even if the VAT is regressive because it is an indirect tax, it is not prohibited by the
Constitution. (Tolentino vs Sec. of Finance 1994)

TAX EXEMPTIONS
‣ What is a tax exemption?
‣ It is a grant of immunity, express or implied, to particular persons or corporations from the obligation to pay taxes.

‣ How are tax exemptions granted?


1. By constitutional grant

2. By law

‣ Congress itself may grant tax exemptions, BUT it must be with the concurrence of a majority of all the Members of
the Congress. (Art. 6, Sec. 28[4])
‣ Other than the Constitution, is it only the Congress who can grant tax exemptions?
‣ Generally YES. However the following are recognized exceptions —

a. Where the President exercises his power under the flexible tariff clause to remove existing protective tariff rates
(Art. 6, Sec. 28[2])

b. The local government may grant exemptions from the payment of local taxes without congressional approval
consequent to its power to levy taxes, fees and other charges. (Art. 10, Sec. 5)

c. Where the President enters into and ratify a tax treaty granting certain exemptions subject only to Senate
occurrence.

CONSTITUTIONAL TAX EXEMPTIONS


1. EXEMPTION OF RELIGIOUS, CHARITABLE, AND EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS FROM REAL PROPERTY TAXES (ART. 6, SEC.
28[3])
‣ The following institutions are exempt from real property taxes —

a. Charitable institutions

b. Churches and personages or convents appurtenant thereto

c. Mosques

d. Non-profit cemeteries, and

e. All lands, buildings, and improvements, actually, directly, and exclusively used for religious, charitable, or
educational purposes
‣ The exemption in Art. 6, Sec. 28[3] is only for taxes assessed as property taxes. (Lladoc vs CIR)

‣ For the exemption of “lands, buildings, and improvements” they should not only be 'exclusively' but also “actually”
and “directly” used for religious, charitable, or educational purposes. There must be proof of the actual and direct use
of the lands, buildings, and improvements for religious or charitable or educational purposes to be exempt from
taxation. (Province of Abra v. Hernando and Roman Catholic Bishop 1981)
‣ RATIONALE — The tax privileges are granted because these institutions are providing services which government
should be providing.
‣ How do you determine whether a certain institution is a charitable?
‣ What is meant by actual, direct, and exclusive use of the property for charitable institutions is the direct and
immediate and actual application of the property itself to the purpose for which the charitable institution is
organized. (Lung Center v. Quezon City 2004)

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‣ To determine whether an enterprise is a charitable institution/entity or not, the elements which should be
considered include the statute creating the enterprise, its corporate purposes, its constitution and by-laws, the
methods of administration, the nature of the actual work performed, the character of the services rendered, the
indefiniteness of the beneficiaries, and the use and occupation of the properties. (Lung Center v. Quezon City
2004)
‣ What about auxiliary establishments in the exempted institutions, are they exempt as well? (such as a
cafeteria in a school)
‣ BERNAS — YES. This is because it is auxiliary to educational purposes. The students and faculty needs to eat.

‣ What if a charitable institution leases out several private portions for profit, do they lose their exemption?
‣ YES. But only to the extent of those for commercial profit.

‣ SEE — Lung Center v. Quezon City, G.R. No. 144104, June 29, 2004.
‣ In this case, the Lung Centre leased several portions of its property for commercial purposes. The Supreme
Court held that the hospital was not exempt from real property tax on the portions of its property not actually,
directly, and exclusively used for charitable purposes. Thus, those leased out for commercial purposes are
subject to real property tax. However, those used by the hospital even if used for paying patients remain
exempt from real property taxes.

‣ If a hospital also admits paying patients, does it lose its character as a charitable institution?
‣ NO. As long as the income derived from paying clients is re-infused to further its functions as a charitable
enterprise

‣ The admission of pay patients does not detract from the charitable character of a hospital if its funds are devoted
exclusively to the maintenance of the institution as a public charity. (CIR vs Bishop of Missionary District)

‣ As a general principle, a charitable institution does not lose its character as such and its exemption from taxes
simply because it derives income from paying patients , whether out-patient or confined in the hospital or receives
subsidies from the government, as long as the money received is devoted or used altogether to the charitable
object which it is intended to achieve, and no money inures to the private benefit of the persons managing or
operating the institution. (Lung Center v. Quezon City 2004)

2. EXEMPTION OF NON-STOCK, NON-PROFIT EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS FROM INCOME TAXES (ART. 14, SEC. 4[3])
‣ All revenues and assets of non-stock, non-profit educational institutions used actually, directly, and exclusively for
educational purposes shall be exempt from taxes and duties.
‣ Educational Institution — it refers to a school, seminary, college or educational establishment. Private auspices such
as foundations and civic-spirited organisations such as the YMCA are not educational institutions within the meaning
of this tax exemption. (Commission of Internal Revenue v. CA 1998)
‣ RATIONALE — These tax privileges are meant to help enable private schools to offer quality and affordable education.

3. EXEMPTION OF GRANTS, ENDOWMENTS, DONATIONS, OR CONTRIBUTIONS TO EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS FROM DONOR’S


AND ESTATE TAX (ART. 14, SEC. 4[4])

‣ Subject to conditions prescribed by law, all grants, endowments, donations, or contributions used actually, directly,
and exclusively for educational purposes shall be exempt from tax.

DELEGATION OF THE POWER TO TAX


‣ RULE — THE CONGRESS MAY, BY LAW, AUTHORIZE THE PRESIDENT TO FIX —
1. Tariff rates

2. Import and export quotas

3. Tonnage and wharfage dues

4. Other duties or imposts within the framework of the national development program of the Government

‣ What are the limitations on this delegation?


‣ The authority of the President must be within specified limits, and subject to such limitations and restrictions as
Congress may impose

‣ The restrictions and limitations imposed by Congress take on the mantle of a constitutional command, which the
executive branch is obliged to observe. (Southern Cross v. Philippine Cement 2004)

‣ NOTE — this is another constitutionally permissible delegation of legislative power. It is an exception to the principle of
non-delegability of legislative powers

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OTHER LIMITATIONS ON LEGISLATIVE POWERS

Section 30. No law shall be passed increasing the appellate jurisdiction of the Supreme Court as provided in this
Constitution without its advice and concurrence.

Section 31. No law granting a title of royalty or nobility shall be enacted.

‣ RULE — CONGRESS MAY ONLY INCREASE THE APPELLATE JURISDICTION OF THE SUPREME COURT WITH ITS ADVICE AND
CONCURRENCE
‣ Rationale — The purpose of this new rule is to prevent the overburdening of the Supreme Court.

‣ SEE — Fabian v. Desierto, G.R. No. 129742, September 16,1998


‣ Section 27 of R.A. No. 6770 (Ombudsman Act of 1989) provides that “all administrative disciplinary cases, orders,
directives or decisions of the Office of the Ombudsman may be appealed to the Supreme Court in accordance with
Rule 45 of the Rules of Court.”
‣ Court held that such provision is unconstitutional as it expands the appellate jurisdiction of the Supreme Court
without its advice and consent. Consequently, "and in line with the regulatory philosophy adopted in appeals from
quasi-judicial agencies in the Rules of Civil Procedure, appeals from decisions of the Office of the Ombudsman in
administrative cases should be taken to the Court of Appeals under the provision of Rule 43,

OTHER POWERS OF CONGRESS

1. Power to act as Board of Canvassers in election of President (Art. 7, Sec. 4)


‣ In the exercise of this power, Congress may validly delegate the initial determination of the authenticity and due
execution of the certificates of canvass to a Joint Congressional Committee, composed of members of the House of
Representatives and of the Senate. The creation of the Joint Committee does not constitute grave abuse and cannot
be said to have deprived petitioner and the other members of Congress of their congressional prerogatives, because
under the very Rules under attack, the decisions and final report of the said Committee shall be subject to the
approval of the joint session of Congress, the two Houses voting separately. (Ruy Elias Lopez v. Senate of the
Philippines 2004)
‣ Even after Congress has adjourned its regular session, it may continue to perform this constitutional duty of
canvassing the presidential and vice- presidential election results without need of any call for a special session by the
President. The joint public session of both Houses of Congress convened by express directive of Sec. 4, Article VII of
the Constitution to canvass the votes for and to proclaim the newly-elected President and Vice President has not, and
cannot, adjourn sine die until it has accomplished its constitutionally mandated tasks. For only when a board of
canvassers. (has completed its functions is it rendered functus officio. (Pimentel v. Joint Committee of Congress 2004)

2. Power to call a special election for President and Vice President (Art. 7, Sec. 10)
3. Power to judge President’s physical fitness to discharge the functions of the Presidency (Art. 7, Sec. 11)
4. Power to revoke or extend suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus or declaration of martial law
(Art. 7, Sec. 18)
5. Power to concur in Presidential amnesties. Concurrence of majority of all the members of Congress (Art. 7, Sec.
19)
6. Power to concur in treaties or international agreements. Concurrence of at least 2/3 of all the members of the
Senate (Art. 7, Sec. 21)
7. Power to confirm certain appointments/nominations made by the President.
a. Nomination made by the President in the event of a vacancy in the Office of Vice President, from among the
members of Congress, confirmed by a majority vote of all the Members of both Houses of Congress, voting
separately. (Art. 7, Sec. 9)
b. Nominations made by the President under Art. 7 Sec. 16, confirmed by Commission on Appointments.

8. Power of impeachment (Art. 11, Sec. 2)

9. Power relative to natural resources (Art. 12, Sec. 2)

10. Power to propose amendments to the Constitution (Art. 17, Sec. 1 and 2)

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PEOPLE’S INITIATIVE AND REFERENDUM

Section 32. The Congress shall, as early as possible, provide for a system of initiative and referendum, and the exceptions
therefrom, whereby the people can directly propose and enact laws or approve or reject any act or law or part thereof
passed by the Congress or local legislative body after the registration of a petition therefor signed by at least ten per
centum of the total number of registered voters, of which every legislative district must be represented by at least three
per centum of the registered voters thereof.

RA 6735— INITIATIVE AND REFERENDUM ACT (1989)


Section 2. Statement of Policy. — The power of the people under a system of initiative and referendum to directly
propose, enact, approve or reject, in whole or in part, the Constitution, laws, ordinances, or resolutions passed by any
legislative body upon compliance with the requirements of this Act is hereby affirmed, recognized and guaranteed.

Section 3. Definition of Terms. — For purposes of this Act, the following terms shall mean:
(a) "Initiative" is the power of the people to propose amendments to the Constitution or to propose and enact legislations
through an election called for the purpose.
There are three (3) systems of initiative, namely:
a.1 Initiative on the Constitution which refers to a petition proposing amendments to the Constitution;
a.2. Initiative on statutes which refers to a petition proposing to enact a national legislation; and
a.3. Initiative on local legislation which refers to a petition proposing to enact a regional, provincial, city, municipal, or
barangay law, resolution or ordinance.

(b) "Indirect initiative" is exercise of initiative by the people through a proposition sent to Congress or the local legislative
body for action.

(c) "Referendum" is the power of the electorate to approve or reject a legislation through an election called for the
purpose. It may be of two classes, namely:
c.1. Referendum on statutes which refers to a petition to approve or reject an act or law, or part thereof, passed by
Congress; and
c.2. Referendum on local law which refers to a petition to approve or reject a law, resolution or ordinance enacted by
regional assemblies and local legislative bodies.

(d) "Proposition" is the measure proposed by the voters.

(e) "Plebiscite" is the electoral process by which an initiative on the Constitution is approved or rejected by the people.

(f) "Petition" is the written instrument containing the proposition and the required number of signatories. It shall be in a
form to be determined by and submitted to the Commission on Elections, hereinafter referred to as the Commission.

(g) "Local government units" refers to provinces, cities, municipalities and barangays.

(h) "Local legislative bodies" refers to the Sangguniang Panlalawigan, Sangguniang Panlungsod, Sangguniang Bayan,
and Sangguniang Nayon.

(i) "Local executives" refers to the Provincial Governors, City or Municipal Mayors and Punong Barangay, as the case may
be.

Section 4. Who may exercise. — The power of initiative and referendum may be exercised by all registered voters of the
country, autonomous regions, provinces, cities, municipalities and barangays.

Section 5. Requirements. —

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(a) To exercise the power of initiative or referendum, at least ten per centum (10%) of the total number of the registered
voters, of which every legislative district is represented by at least three per centum (3%) of the registered voters thereof,
shall sign a petition for the purpose and register the same with the Commission.
(b) A petition for an initiative on the 1987 Constitution must have at least twelve per centum (12%) of the total number of
registered voters as signatories, of which every legislative district must be represented by at least three per centum (3%)
of the registered voters therein. Initiative on the Constitution may be exercised only after five (5) years from the ratification
of the 1987 Constitution and only once every five (5) years thereafter.

Section 6. Special Registration. — The Commission on Election shall set a special registration day at least three (3)
weeks before a scheduled initiative or referendum.

Section 9. Effectivity of Initiative or Referendum Proposition. —


(a) The Proposition of the enactment, approval, amendment or rejection of a national law shall be submitted to and
approved by a majority of the votes cast by all the registered voters of the Philippines.

If, as certified to by the Commission, the proposition is approved by a majority of the votes cast, the national law
proposed for enactment, approval, or amendment shall become effective fifteen (15) days following completion of its
publication in the Official Gazette or in a newspaper of general circulation in the Philippines. If, as certified by the
Commission, the proposition to reject a national law is approved by a majority of the votes cast, the said national law
shall be deemed repealed and the repeal shall become effective fifteen (15) days following the completion of
publication of the proposition and the certification by the Commission in the Official Gazette or in a newspaper of
general circulation in the Philippines.

However, if the majority vote is not obtained, the national law sought to be rejected or amended shall remain in full
force and effect.

(b) The proposition in an initiative on the Constitution approved by a majority of the votes cast in the plebiscite shall
become effective as to the day of the plebiscite.

Section 10. Prohibited Measures. — The following cannot be the subject of an initiative or referendum petition:

(a) No petition embracing more than one (1) subject shall be submitted to the electorate; and
(b) Statutes involving emergency measures, the enactment of which are specifically vested in Congress by the
Constitution, cannot be subject to referendum until ninety (90) days after its effectivity.

Section 11. Indirect Initiative. — Any duly accredited people's organization, as defined by law, may file a petition for
indirect initiative with the House of Representatives, and other legislative bodies. The petition shall contain a summary of
the chief purposes and contents of the bill that the organization proposes to be enacted into law by the legislature.

The procedure to be followed on the initiative bill shall be the same as the enactment of any legislative measure before
the House of Representatives except that the said initiative bill shall have precedence over the pending legislative
measures on the committee.

SECTION 13. Procedure in Local Initiative. —


(a) Not less than two thousand (2,000) registered voters in case of autonomous regions, one thousand (1,000) in case of
provinces and cities, one hundred (100) in case of municipalities, and fifty (50) in case of barangays, may file a petition
with the Regional Assembly or local legislative body, respectively, proposing the adoption, enactment, repeal, or
amendment, of any law, ordinance or resolution.
(b) If no favorable action thereon is made by local legislative body within (30) days from its presentation, the proponents
through their duly authorized and registered representative may invoke their power of initiative, giving notice thereof
to the local legislative body concerned.
(c) The proposition shall be numbered serially starting from one (1). The Secretary of Local Government or his designated
representative shall extend assistance in the formulation of the proposition.
(d) Two or more propositions may be submitted in an initiative.

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(e) Proponents shall have one hundred twenty (120) days in case of autonomous regions, ninety (90) days in case of
provinces and cities, sixty (60) days in case of municipalities, and thirty (30) days in case of barangays, from notice
mentioned in subsection (b) hereof to collect the required number of signatures.
(f) The petition shall be signed before the Election Registrar, or his designated representative, in the presence of a
representative of the proponent, and a representative of the regional assemblies and local legislative bodies
concerned in a public place in the autonomous region or local government unit, as the case may be. Signature
stations may be established in as many places as may be warranted.
(g) Upon the lapse of the period herein provided, the Commission on Elections, through its office in the local government
unit concerned shall certify as to whether or not the required number of signatures has been obtained. Failure to
obtain the required number is a defeat of the proposition.
(h) If the required number of the signatures is obtained, the Commission shall then set a date for the initiative at which
the proposition shall be submitted to the registered voters in the local government unit concerned for their approval
within ninety (90) days from the date of certification by the Commission, as provided in subsection (g) hereof, in case
of autonomous regions, sixty (60) days in case of the provinces and cities, forty-five (45) days in case of
municipalities, and thirty (30) days in case of barangays. The initiative shall then be held on the date set, after which
the results thereof shall be certified and proclaimed by the Commission on Elections.

Section 14. Effectivity of Local Propositions. — If the proposition is approved by a majority of the votes cast, it shall take
effect fifteen (15) days after certification by the Commission as if affirmative action thereon had been made by the local
legislative body and local executive concerned. If it fails to obtain said number of votes, the proposition is considered
defeated.

Section 15. Limitations on Local Initiatives. —


(a) The power of local initiative shall not be exercised more than once a year.
(b) Initiative shall extend only to subjects or matters which are within the legal powers of the local legislative bodies to
enact.
(c) If at any time before the initiative is held, the local legislative body shall adopt in toto the proposition presented, the
initiative shall be cancelled. However, those against such action may, if they so desire, apply for initiative in the
manner herein provided.

Section 16. Limitations Upon Local Legislative Bodies. — Any proposition or ordinance or resolution approved through
the system of initiative and referendum as herein provided shall not be repealed, modified or amended, by the local
legislative body concerned within six (6) months from the date therefrom, and may be amended, modified or repealed by
the local legislative body within three (3) years thereafter by a vote of three-fourths (3/4) of all its members: Provided,
however, that in case of barangays, the period shall be one (1) year after the expiration of the first six (6) months.

Section 17. Local Referendum. — Notwithstanding the provisions of Section 4 hereof, any local legislative body may
submit to the registered voters of autonomous region, provinces, cities, municipalities and barangays for the approval or
rejection, any ordinance or resolution duly enacted or approved.

Said referendum shall be held under the control and direction of the Commission within sixty (60) days in case of
provinces and cities, forty-five (45) days in case of municipalities and thirty (30) days in case of barangays.

The Commission shall certify and proclaim the results of the said referendum.

INITIATIVE
‣ Initiative — is the power of the people to propose amendments to the Constitution or to propose and enact legislation
through an election called for the purpose.

1. Initiative on the Constitution — refers to a petition proposing amendments to the Constitution

2. Initiative on statutes — refers to a petition proposing to enact a national legislation; and Initiative on local legislation
which refers to a petition proposing to enact a regional, provincial, city, municipal or barangay law, resolution or
ordinance.

3. Indirect initiative — is the exercise of initiative by the people through a proposition sent to Congress or local
legislative body for action (Sec. 2, R. A. 6735)

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REFERENDUM
‣ Referendum — is the power of the electorate to approve or reject legislation through an election called for the purpose.

1. Referendum on statutes — refers to a petition to approve or reject an act or law, or part thereof, passed by Congress;

2. Referendum on local laws — refers to a petition to approve or reject a law, resolution or ordinance enacted by
regional assemblies and local legislative bodies (Sec. 2(c), R. A. 6735)

LIMITATIONS ON INITIATIVE AND REFERENDUM


‣ The following cannot be the subject of an initiative or referendum petition —

1. No petition embracing more than one subject shall be submitted to the electorate

2. Statutes involving emergency measures, the enactment of which is specifically vested in Congress by the
Constitution, cannot be subject to referendum until ninety (90) days after their effectivity 


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ARTICLE 7 — EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT

EXECUTIVE POWER; THE PRESIDENCY AND VICE-PRESIDENCY

Section 1. The executive power shall be vested in the President of the Philippines.

Section 3. There shall be a Vice-President who shall have the same qualifications and term of office and be elected with,
and in the same manner, as the President. He may be removed from office in the same manner as the President.

The Vice-President may be appointed as a Member of the Cabinet. Such appointment requires no confirmation

WHERE EXECUTIVE POWER IS VESTED; POWERS AND FUNCTIONS OF THE PRESIDENT


1. CHIEF EXECUTIVE
‣ Executive power is vested in the President

‣ History of the Seat of Executive Power—

1. 1935 Constitution — President

2. 1973 Constitution — Prime Minister

3. 1987 Constitution — President

‣ This means that the President is "the Executive of the Government of the Philippines, and no other. The heads of the
executive departments occupy political positions and hold office in an advisory capacity. They are subject to the
President's bosom confidence and to his direction. (Villena v. Secretary of Interior 1939)
2. HEAD OF STATE
‣ The Presidency includes many other functions than just being chief executive, some of which pertain to the
“ceremonial functions” of the President, as the ceremonial head of government.
3. LEGISLATIVE POWERS MAY BE DELEGATED TO THE PRESIDENT IN CERTAIN CASES
‣ The Constitution allows in certain instances the delegation of legislative power to the President—

a. Delegation of emergency powers to the President (Art. 6, Sec. 23[2])


b. Delegation of the power to fix tariff rates, import and export quotas, tonnage and wharfage dues, and other duties
or imposts to the President. (Art. 6, Sec. 28[2])

POWERS AND FUNCTIONS OF THE VICE-PRESIDENT


1. Presidential Heir during his term
‣ The Vice-President’s only constitutional function is to be on hand to act as President when needed or to succeed to
the presidency in case of a vacancy in the office.

‣ He is essentially a President in reserve

2. Member of the Cabinet based on the President’s discretion


‣ The President may appoint the Vice-President as a Member of the Cabinet and such appointment does not need the
consent of the Commission on Appointments.

‣ The President is not obliged to give the Vice-President a cabinet position because the President must be free to
choose for his Cabinet people who are his trusted personal choices.

WHAT IS EXECUTIVE POWER?


‣ Executive power includes the following powers —

1. Power of Appointment (Art. 7, Sec. 16)

2. Power of Executive Control (Art. 7, Sec. 17)

3. Power to ensure faithful execution of laws (Art. 7, Sec. 17)

4. Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (Art. 7, Sec. 18)

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5. Power of executive clemency (Art. 7, Sec. 19)

6. Power to contract or guarantee foreign loans (Art. 7, Sec. 20)

7. Power to enter into foreign relations (Art. 7, Sec. 21)

8. Residual powers (Marcos vs Manglapus 1989)

QUALIFICATIONS OF THE PRESIDENT AND VICE-PRESIDENT

Section 2. No person may be elected President unless he is a natural-born citizen of the Philippines, a registered voter,
able to read and write, at least forty years of age on the day of the election, and a resident of the Philippines for at least
ten years immediately preceding such election.

Section 3. There shall be a Vice-President who shall have the same qualifications and term of office and be elected with,
and in the same manner, as the President. He may be removed from office in the same manner as the President. XXXXXX

1. Natural-born citizen of the Philippines

2. Registered voter

3. Able to read and write

4. At least forty years of age on the day of the election, and

5. A resident of the Philippines for at least ten years immediately preceding such election

ELECTION AND TERM OF THE PRESIDENT AND VICE-PRESIDENT

Section 4. The President and the Vice-President shall be elected by direct vote of the people for a term of six years which
shall begin at noon on the thirtieth day of June next following the day of the election and shall end at noon of the same
date, six years thereafter. The President shall not be eligible for any re-election. No person who has succeeded as
President and has served as such for more than four years shall be qualified for election to the same office at any time.

No Vice-President shall serve for more than two successive terms. Voluntary renunciation of the office for any length of
time shall not be considered as an interruption in the continuity of the service for the full term for which he was elected.

Unless otherwise provided by law, the regular election for President and Vice-President shall be held on the second
Monday of May.

The returns of every election for President and Vice-President, duly certified by the board of canvassers of each province
or city, shall be transmitted to the Congress, directed to the President of the Senate. Upon receipt of the certificates of
canvass, the President of the Senate shall, not later than thirty days after the day of the election, open all the certificates
in the presence of the Senate and the House of Representatives in joint public session, and the Congress, upon
determination of the authenticity and due execution thereof in the manner provided by law, canvass the votes.

The person having the highest number of votes shall be proclaimed elected, but in case two or more shall have an equal
and highest number of votes, one of them shall forthwith be chosen by the vote of a majority of all the Members of both
Houses of the Congress, voting separately. The Congress shall promulgate its rules for the canvassing of the certificates.

The Supreme Court, sitting en banc, shall be the sole judge of all contests relating to the election, returns, and
qualifications of the President or Vice-President, and may promulgate its rules for the purpose.

Section 5. Before they enter on the execution of their office, the President, the Vice- President, or the Acting President
shall take the following oath or affirmation: "I do solemnly swear [or affirm] that I will faithfully and conscientiously fulfill
my duties as President [or Vice-President or Acting President] of the Philippines, preserve and defend its Constitution,
execute its laws, do justice to every man, and consecrate myself to the service of the Nation. So help me God." [In case
of affirmation, last sentence will be omitted].

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ELECTION AND TERM OF THE PRESIDENT AND VICE-PRESIDENT


‣ How is the President and Vice-President elected?
‣ The President and the Vice-President shall be elected by direct vote of the people

‣ When does the election take place?


‣ The regular election for President and Vice-President shall be held on the second Monday of May, unless otherwise
provided by law.

‣ How long is the term of office of the President and Vice-President?


‣ 6 years.

‣ When the President and Vice-President’s term commence and end?


‣ It begins at noon on the thirtieth day of June next following the day of the election and shall end at noon of the same
date, six years thereafter.

‣ NOTE — Before they enter on the execution of their office, the President, the Vice- President, or the Acting President
must take an oath or affirmation, the wording of which is stated in Art. 7, Sec. 5.

‣ Is there a limitation of terms for the President and Vice-President?


‣ YES. Observe the following rules —

1. The President can only serve for 1 term


‣ He is not eligible for any re-election

‣ EXCEPT — a person who succeeds as President and has served as such for 4 years or less may run for
re-election
‣ This only applies to Presidents by succession, not election.

‣ This enabled Pres. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, who succeeded Pres. Joseph Estrada in 2001, to run for re-
election in 2004, as she served for only 3 years.

‣ If the successor president served for more than 4 years, he becomes disqualified from re-election

2. There is no limitation of terms which a Vice-President may serve, however he cannot serve for more than 2
successive terms
‣ NOTE — Voluntary renunciation of the office for any length of time shall not be considered as an interruption in
the continuity of the service for the full term for which he was elected.

CANVASSING OF VOTES FOR THE PRESIDENT AND VICE-PRESIDENT


‣ RULE — CONGRESS HAS THE SOLE AUTHORITY TO CANVASS THE VOTES AND PROCLAIM THE WINNERS OF THE PRESIDENTIAL
AND VICE-PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION

‣ This is the function of Congress and not of the Comelec. (Macalintal v. Comelec 2003)
‣ What is the procedure for the canvassing of votes?
1. The returns of every election for President and Vice-President, duly certified by the board of canvassers of each
province or city, shall be transmitted to the Congress, directed to the President of the Senate.

2. Upon receipt of the certificates of canvass, the President of the Senate shall, not later than thirty days after the day of
the election, open all the certificates in the presence of the Senate and the House of Representatives in joint public
session

3. Upon determination of the authenticity and due execution thereof in the manner provided by law, Congress shall
canvass the votes.

‣ NOTE — The function of Congress is not merely ministerial. It has authority to examine the certificates of canvass
for authenticity and due execution. For this purpose, Congress must pass a law governing their canvassing
functions. Also, Congress should promulgate its rules for the canvassing of the certificates.

4. The person having the highest number of votes shall be proclaimed elected

‣ NOTE — In case two or more shall have an equal and highest number of votes, one of them shall forthwith be
chosen by the vote of a majority of all the Members of both Houses of the Congress, voting separately.
‣ May Congress delegate the preliminary count of votes in a presidential election to a Joint Committee?
‣ YES. Provided that the Committee report be submitted for approval by the Congress as a body.

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‣ SEE — Ruy Elias Lopez v. Senate of the Philippines, G.R. No. 163556, June 8, 2004
‣ Congress may validly delegate the initial determination of the authenticity and due execution of the certificates of
canvass to a Joint Congressional Committee, composed of members of the House of Representatives and of the
Senate. The creation of the Joint Committee does not constitute grave abuse and cannot be said to have deprived
petitioner and the other members of Congress of their congressional prerogatives, because under the very Rules
under attack, the decisions and final report of the said Committee shall be subject to the approval of the joint
session of both Houses of Congress, voting separately

‣ May Congress continue the canvass even after the final adjournment of its sessions?
‣ YES. The final adjournment of Congress does not terminate an unfinished presidential canvass. Adjournment
terminates legislation but not the non-legislative functions of Congress such as canvassing of votes.

‣ SEE — Aquilino Pimentel, Jr. v. Joint Committee of Congress to Canvass the votes G.R. No 163783 June 22,
2004
‣ Even after Congress has adjourned its regular session, it may continue to perform this constitutional duty of
canvassing the presidential and vice- presidential election results without need of any call for a special session by
the President. The joint public session of both Houses of Congress convened by express directive of Sec. 4, Art.
VII of the Constitution to canvass the votes for and to proclaim the newly-elected President and Vice-President has
not, and cannot, adjourn sine die until it has accomplished its constitutionally mandated tasks. For only when a
board of canvassers has completed its functions is it rendered functus officio.
‣ Can Congress undertake a separate and an “unofficial” tabulation of results?
‣ NO. SEE — Brillantes v. Comelec, G.R. No. 163193, June 15, 2004
‣ There is no constitutional or statutory basis for Comelec to undertake a separate and an “unofficial” tabulation of,
results, whether manually or electronically. By conducting such “unofficial” tabulation, the Comelec descends to the
level of a private organization, spending public funds for the purpose. This not only violates the exclusive
prerogative of NAMFREL to conduct an “unofficial” count, but also taints the integrity of the envelopes containing
the election returns and the election returns themselves. Thus, if the Comelec is proscribed from conducting an
official canvass of the votes cast for the President and Vice- President, the Comelec is, with more reason,
prohibited from making an “unofficial” canvass of said votes

PRESIDENTIAL ELECTORAL TRIBUNAL

Section 4. XXXXX The Supreme Court, sitting en banc, shall be the sole judge of all contests relating to the election,
returns, and qualifications of the President or Vice-President, and may promulgate its rules for the purpose.

A.M. No. 10-4-29-SC— THE 2010 RULES OF THE PRESIDENTIAL ELECTORAL TRIBUNAL
Rule 7. Express and implied powers. - The Tribunal shall exercise all powers expressly vested in it by the Constitution or
by law, and such other powers as may be inherent, necessary or incidental thereto for the accomplishment of its
purposes and functions. (R6)

Rule 13. Jurisdiction. - The Tribunal shall be the sole judge of all contests relating to the election, returns, and
qualifications of the President or Vice-President of the Philippines. (R12)

Rule 14. How initiated. - An election contest is initiated by the filing of an election protest or a petition for quo warranto
against the President or Vice- President. An election protest shall not include a petition for quo warranto. A petition for
quo warranto shall not include an election protest. (R13)

Rule 15. Election Protest. - The registered candidate for President or Vice-President of the Philippines who received the
second or third highest number of votes may contest the election of the President or Vice-President, as the case may be,
by filing a verified election protest with the Clerk of the Presidential Electoral Tribunal within thirty days after the
proclamation of the winner. (R14)

Rule 16. Quo warranto. - A verified for quo warranto contesting the election of the President or Vice - President on the
ground of ineligibility or disloyalty to the Republic of the Philippines may filed by any registered voter who has voted in
the election concerned within ten days after the proclamation of the winner. (R16)

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PRESIDENTIAL ELECTORAL TRIBUNAL (PET)
‣ RULE — The Supreme Court, sitting en banc as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal shall be the sole judge of all
contests relating to the election, returns, and qualifications of the President or Vice-President
‣ NOTE — The power of the PET includes the power to correct manifest errors on the statement of votes (SOV) and
certificates of canvass (COC). (Legarda v. De Castro 2005)
‣ Who may file an electoral protest with the PET?
‣ Only the registered candidate for President or Vice-President of the Philippines who received the second or third
highest number of votes may contest the election of the President or Vice-President. By this express enumeration, the
rule makers have in effect determined the real parties in interest concerning an on-going election contest. (Rule 15,
Rules of the PET)

‣ Thus, the widow of a losing candidate is not a real party-in-interest. (Fernando Poe, Jr. v. Arroyo 2005)

COMPENSATION OF THE PRESIDENT AND VICE-PRESIDENT

Section 6. The President shall have an official residence. The salaries of the President and Vice-President shall be
determined by law and shall not be decreased during their tenure. No increase in said compensation shall take effect until
after the expiration of the term of the incumbent during which such increase was approved. They shall not receive during
their tenure any other emolument from the Government or any other source.

‣ What are the rules to observe regarding the salaries and compensation of the President and Vice-President?
1. It is determined by law

2. It cannot be decreased during their tenure

3. Any increase in said compensation will take effect only until after the expiration of the term of the incumbent during
which such increase was approved.

4. They cannot receive during their tenure any other emolument from the Government or any other source.

PRESIDENTIAL SUCCESSION

Section 7. The President-elect and the Vice President-elect shall assume office at the beginning of their terms.

If the President-elect fails to qualify, the Vice President-elect shall act as President until the President-elect shall have
qualified.

If a President shall not have been chosen, the Vice President-elect shall act as President until a President shall have been
chosen and qualified.

If at the beginning of the term of the President, the President-elect shall have died or shall have become permanently
disabled, the Vice President-elect shall become President.

Where no President and Vice-President shall have been chosen or shall have qualified, or where both shall have died or
become permanently disabled, the President of the Senate or, in case of his inability, the Speaker of the House of
Representatives, shall act as President until a President or a Vice-President shall have been chosen and qualified.

The Congress shall, by law, provide for the manner in which one who is to act as President shall be selected until a
President or a Vice-President shall have qualified, in case of death, permanent disability, or inability of the officials
mentioned in the next preceding paragraph.

Section 8. In case of death, permanent disability, removal from office, or resignation of the President, the Vice-President
shall become the President to serve the unexpired term. In case of death, permanent disability, removal from office, or
resignation of both the President and Vice-President, the President of the Senate or, in case of his inability, the Speaker of

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the House of Representatives, shall then act as President until the President or Vice-President shall have been elected
and qualified.

The Congress shall, by law, provide who shall serve as President in case of death, permanent disability, or resignation of
the Acting President. He shall serve until the President or the Vice-President shall have been elected and qualified, and be
subject to the same restrictions of powers and disqualifications as the Acting President.

Section 9. Whenever there is a vacancy in the Office of the Vice-President during the term for which he was elected, the
President shall nominate a Vice-President from among the Members of the Senate and the House of Representatives who
shall assume office upon confirmation by a majority vote of all the Members of both Houses of the Congress, voting
separately.

Section 10. The Congress shall, at ten o'clock in the morning of the third day after the vacancy in the offices of the
President and Vice-President occurs, convene in accordance with its rules without need of a call and within seven days,
enact a law calling for a special election to elect a President and a Vice-President to be held not earlier than forty-five
days nor later than sixty days from the time of such call. The bill calling such special election shall be deemed certified
under paragraph 2, Section 26, Article V1 of this Constitution and shall become law upon its approval on third reading by
the Congress. Appropriations for the special election shall be charged against any current appropriations and shall be
exempt from the requirements of paragraph 4, Section 25, Article V1 of this Constitution. The convening of the Congress
cannot be suspended nor the special election postponed. No special election shall be called if the vacancy occurs within
eighteen months before the date of the next presidential election.

RULES ON PRESIDENTIAL AND VICE-PRESIDENTIAL SUCCESSION


1. VACANCY IN THE PRESIDENCY (ART. 7, SEC. 7, 8)
a. Vacancy in the beginning of the term of the presidency (Art. 7, Sec. 7)
i. If the President-elect fails to qualify — the Vice President-elect shall act as President until the President-elect shall
have qualified.

ii. If a President shall not have been chosen — the Vice President-elect shall act as President until a President shall
have been chosen and qualified.

iii. If the President-elect dies or becomes permanently disabled — the Vice President-elect shall become President.

b. Vacancy during the term of the presidency (Art. 7, Sec. 8)


‣ In case of death, permanent disability, removal from office, or resignation of the President — the Vice-President
shall become the President to serve the unexpired term.

2. VACANCY IN THE VICE-PRESIDENCY (ART. 7, SEC. 9)


‣ If there is a vacancy in the Office of the Vice-President during the term for which he was elected — The President shall
nominate a Vice-President from among the Members of the Senate and the House of Representatives who shall
assume office upon confirmation by a majority vote of all the Members of both Houses of the Congress, voting
separately

3. VACANCY IN BOTH THE PRESIDENCY AND VICE-PRESIDENCY (ART. 7, SEC. 7, 8, 10)


‣ This applies where —

a. No President and Vice-President shall have been chosen or shall have qualified, or where both shall have died or
become permanently disabled.

b. In case of death, permanent disability, removal from office, or resignation of both the President and Vice-
President. (Art. 7, Sec. 8)

‣ Observe the following rules and procedure (Art. 7, Sec. 7, 8, 10)—


1. The Senate President or, in case of his inability, the Speaker of the House of Representatives shall act as
President until a President or a Vice-President shall have been chosen and qualified. He shall serve until the
President or the Vice-President shall have been elected and qualified, and be subject to the same restrictions of
powers and disqualifications as the Acting President. (Art. 7, Sec. 8)

‣ NOTE — the Senate President or Speaker merely becomes “acting” President until one is elected.

2. The Congress shall, at ten o'clock in the morning of the third day after the vacancy in the offices of the President
and Vice-President occurs, convene in accordance with its rules without need of a call

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3. Within seven days, Congress must enact a law calling for a special election to elect a President and a Vice-
President to be held not earlier than forty-five days nor later than sixty days from the time of such call.

‣ What are the constitutional norms to observe in legislating a law calling for a special election?
1. The bill calling such special election shall be deemed certified under paragraph 2, Section 26, Article V1 of this
Constitution and shall become law upon its approval on third reading by the Congress.

2. Appropriations for the special election shall be charged against any current appropriations and shall be exempt
from the requirements of paragraph 4, Section 25, Article V1 of this Constitution.

3. The convening of the Congress cannot be suspended nor the special election postponed. (Art. 7, Sec. 10)

‣ Is a Special Election always necessary?


‣ NO. No special election shall be called if the vacancy occurs within eighteen months before the date of the next
presidential election. (Art. 7, Sec. 10)

‣ Who acts as President in default of the Senate President or the Speaker?


‣ It is determined by law —

‣ The Congress shall, by law, provide for the manner in which one who is to act as President shall be selected
until a President or a Vice-President shall have qualified, in case of death, permanent disability, or inability of the
officials mentioned in the next preceding paragraph. (Art. 7, Sec. 7)
‣ The Congress shall, by law, provide who shall serve as President in case of death, permanent disability, or
resignation of the Acting President. (Art. 7, Sec. 8)

INCAPACITY OF THE PRESIDENT

Section 11. Whenever the President transmits to the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of
Representatives his written declaration that he is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, and until he
transmits to them a written declaration to the contrary, such powers and duties shall be discharged by the Vice-President
as Acting President.

Whenever a majority of all the Members of the Cabinet transmit to the President of the Senate and to the Speaker of the
House of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his
office, the Vice-President shall immediately assume the powers and duties of the office as Acting President.

Thereafter, when the President transmits to the President of the Senate and to the Speaker of the House of
Representatives his written declaration that no inability exists, he shall reassume the powers and duties of his office.
Meanwhile, should a majority of all the Members of the Cabinet transmit within five days to the President of the Senate
and to the Speaker of the House of Representatives, their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the
powers and duties of his office, the Congress shall decide the issue. For that purpose, the Congress shall convene, if it is
not in session, within forty-eight hours, in accordance with its rules and without need of call.

If the Congress, within ten days after receipt of the last written declaration, or, if not in session, within twelve days after it
is required to assemble, determines by a two-thirds vote of both Houses, voting separately, that the President is unable to
discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice-President shall act as President; otherwise, the President shall
continue exercising the powers and duties of his office.

‣ RULE — IN THE FOLLOWING CASES, THE VICE-PRESIDENT SHALL ACT AS PRESIDENT —


1. PRESIDENT DEEMS HIMSELF UNABLE TO DISCHARGE THE POWERS AND DUTIES OF HIS OFFICE
‣ Observe the following procedure —

a. The President transmits to the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives his
written declaration that he is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office

b. Once he is able, he may transmit a written declaration to the contrary

2. THE CABINET DEEMS THE PRESIDENT UNABLE TO DISCHARGE THE POWERS AND DUTIES OF HIS OFFICE
‣ Observe the following procedure —

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a. Majority of all the Members of the Cabinet transmits to the President of the Senate and to the Speaker of the
House of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and
duties of his office

b. The President may transmit to the President of the Senate and to the Speaker of the House of Representatives
his written declaration that no inability exists, in which case, he shall reassume the powers and duties of his
office.

c. Within 5 days, majority of all the Members of the Cabinet may transmit to the President of the Senate and to
the Speaker of the House of Representatives, their written declaration that the President is unable to
discharge the powers and duties of his office.

d. Congress shall decide the issue. For this purpose, the Congress shall convene, if it is not in session, within
forty-eight hours, in accordance with its rules and without need of call.

e. Within ten days after receipt of the last written declaration, or, if not in session, within twelve days after it is
required to assemble, Congress should determine by a two-thirds vote of both Houses, voting separately,
whether the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office. If so, the Vice-President shall
act as President.

SERIOUS ILLNESS OF THE PRESIDENT

Section 12. In case of serious illness of the President, the public shall be informed of the state of his health. The members
of the Cabinet in charge of national security and foreign relations and the Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces of the
Philippines, shall not be denied access to the President during such illness.

‣ RATIONALE — Former President Marcos kept the state of his health secret from the public.

‣ Section 12 envisions not just illness which incapacitates but also any serious illness which can be a matter of national
concern

DISQUALIFICATIONS AND PROHIBITIONS

Section 13. The President, Vice-President, the Members of the Cabinet, and their deputies or assistants shall not, unless
otherwise provided in this Constitution, hold any other office or employment during their tenure. They shall not, during
said tenure, directly or indirectly, practice any other profession, participate in any business, or be financially interested in
any contract with, or in any franchise, or special privilege granted by the Government or any subdivision, agency, or
instrumentality thereof, including government-owned or controlled corporations or their subsidiaries. They shall strictly
avoid conflict of interest in the conduct of their office.

The spouse and relatives by consanguinity or affinity within the fourth civil degree of the President shall not, during his
tenure, be appointed as Members of the Constitutional Commissions, or the Office of the Ombudsman, or as Secretaries,
Undersecretaries, chairmen or heads of bureaus or offices, including government-owned or controlled corporations and
their subsidiaries.

Section 6. XXXXXX They shall not receive during their tenure any other emolument from the Government or any other
source.

ARTICLE 11 — ACCOUNTABILITY OF PUBLIC OFFICERS


Section 16. No loan, guaranty, or other form of financial accommodation for any business purpose may be granted,
directly or indirectly, by any government-owned or controlled bank or financial institution to the President, the Vice-
President, the Members of the Cabinet, the Congress, the Supreme Court, and the Constitutional Commissions, the
Ombudsman, or to any firm or entity in which they have controlling interest, during their tenure.

PROHIBITIONS ON THE PRESIDENT AND HIS OFFICIAL FAMILY


‣ RULE — THE PRESIDENT, VICE-PRESIDENT, THE MEMBERS OF THE CABINET, AND THEIR DEPUTIES OR ASSISTANTS, DURING
THEIR TENURE, ARE DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY PROHIBITED FROM —

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1. Holding any other office or employment (Covers both public and private office employment)

2. Practice any other profession

3. Participate in any business

4. Be financially interested in any contract with, or in any franchise, or special privilege granted by the Government or
any subdivision, agency, or instrumentality thereof, including government-owned or controlled corporations or their
subsidiaries

5. Receiving any other emolument from the Government or any other source (This prohibition applies only to the
President and Vice-President)

‣ NOTE — The prohibition includes appointments in acting capacity or temporary appointments. (Funa vs Agra 2013)

‣ EXCEPT — THEY MAY HOLD OTHER OFFICES —


1. If it is expressly provided in the Constitution
‣ Such as —

a. Vice President may be appointed as a member of the Cabinet (Art. 7, Sec. 3)

b. Secretary of Justice is an ex-officio member of the Judicial and Bar Council (Art. 8, Sec. 8)
2. Offices in ex-officio capacity
‣ This does not involve occupying “another office” within the contemplation of the prohibition. These offices are
incidental to the official’s primary functions

‣ Ex-officio offices do not comprise "any other office" within the contemplation of the constitutional prohibition but
are properly an imposition of additional duties and functions on said officials by virtue of their primary function

JURISPRUDENCE ON DISQUALIFICATIONS AND PROHIBITIONS ON THE PRESIDENT AND HIS OFFICIAL FAMILY
‣ SEE — CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION VS EXECUTIVE SECRETARY, G.R. NO. 83896, FEBRUARY 22, 1991
‣ RATIONALE — The practice of designating members of the Cabinet, their deputies and assistants as members of the
governing bodies or boards of various government agencies and instrumentalities, including government-owned and
controlled corporations, became prevalent during the time legislative powers in this country were exercised by former
President Ferdinand E. Marcos pursuant to his martial law authority. There was a proliferation of newly-created
agencies, instrumentalities and government-owned and controlled corporations created by presidential decrees and
other modes of presidential issuances where Cabinet members, their deputies or assistants were designated to head
or sit as members of the board with the corresponding salaries, emoluments, per diems, allowances and other
perquisites of office. This practice of holding multiple offices or positions in the government soon led to abuses by
unscrupulous public officials who took advantage of this scheme for purposes of self-enrichment.

‣ The rules on disqualifications and prohibitions on the President and his official family is stricter than other
Public Officials. Section 7, Article I-XB is meant to lay down the general rule applicable to all elective and
appointive public officials and employees, while Section 13, Article VII is meant to be the exception applicable
only to the President, the Vice- President, Members of the Cabinet, their deputies and assistants.
‣ Most of the constitutional provisions on disqualifications (such as to members of Congress) to hold other office or
employment, the prohibition pertains to an office or employment in the government and government-owned or
controlled corporations or their subsidiaries.

‣ In striking contrast is the wording of Section 13, Article VII which states that "The President, Vice- President, the
Members of the Cabinet, and their deputies or assistants shall not, unless otherwise provided in this Constitution,
hold any other office or employment during their tenure." In the latter provision, the disqualification is absolute, not
being qualified by the phrase "in the Government." The prohibition imposed on the President and his official family
is therefore all-embracing and covers both public and private office or employment.

‣ This is because the President and the members of the Cabinet exercise more powers and, therefore, more cheeks
and restraints on them are called for because there is more possibility of abuse in their case.

‣ Thus, while all other appointive officials in the civil service are allowed to hold other office or employment in the
government during their tenure when such is allowed by law or by the primary functions of their positions,
members of the Cabinet, their deputies and assistants may do so only when expressly authorized by the
Constitution itself. In other words, Section 7, Article I-XB is meant to lay down the general rule applicable to all
elective and appointive public officials and employees, while Section 13, Article VII is meant to be the exception
applicable only to the President, the Vice- President, Members of the Cabinet, their deputies and assistants.

‣ The prohibition against holding dual or multiple offices or employment under Section 13, Article VII of the
Constitution does NOT apply to posts occupied in an ex-officio capacity as provided by law and as required by
the primary functions of the officials' office.

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‣ The reason is that these posts do no comprise "any other office" within the contemplation of the constitutional
prohibition but are properly an imposition of additional duties and functions on said officials.

‣ The term ex-officio means "from office; by virtue of office." It refers to an "authority derived from official character
merely, not expressly conferred upon the individual character, but rather annexed to the official position." Ex-officio
likewise denotes an "act done in an official character, or as a consequence of office, and without any other
appointment or authority than that conferred by the office.

‣ An ex-officio member of a board is one who is a member by virtue of his title to a certain office, and without further
warrant or appointment.

‣ The term "primary" used to describe "functions" refers to the order of importance and thus means chief or
principal function. The term is not restricted to the singular but may refer to the plural.The additional duties must
not only be closely related to, but must be required by the official's primary functions.

‣ Such as — Secretaries of Finance and Budget sitting as members of the Monetary Board, and the Secretary of
Transportation and Communications acting as Chairman of the Maritime Industry Authority and the Civil
Aeronautics Board.
‣ If the functions required to be performed are merely incidental, remotely related, inconsistent, incompatible, or
otherwise alien to the primary function of a cabinet official, such additional functions would fall under the purview
of "any other office" prohibited by the Constitution

‣ The ex-officio position being actually and in legal contemplation part of the principal office, it follows that the
official concerned has no right to receive additional compensation for his services in the said position. The reason
is that these services are already paid for and covered by the compensation attached to his principal office.

DOCTRINE OF INCOMPATIBLE OFFICES


‣ SEE — Public Interest Group vs Elma, G.R. No. 138965, June 30, 2006
‣ Since the Chief Presidential Legal Counsel has the duty of giving independent and important legal advice of the
actions of heads of various executive departments and agencies and to review investigations involving other
presidential appointees, he may not occupy a position in any of the office whose performance he must review. Such
would involve incompatible positions. Thus, he cannot be PCGG Chairman and at the same time Chief Presidential
Legal Counsel since the PCGG answers to the President.

PROHIBITIONS ON THE PRESIDENT’S FAMILY AND RELATIVES


‣ RULE — DURING HIS TENURE, THE PRESIDENT’S SPOUSE AND RELATIVES BY CONSANGUINITY OR AFFINITY WITHIN THE FOURTH
CIVIL DEGREE CANNOT BE APPOINTED AS —

1. Members of the Constitutional Commissions

2. Members of the Office of the Ombudsman

3. Secretaries, Undersecretaries, chairmen or heads of bureaus or offices, including government-owned or controlled


corporations and their subsidiaries

‣ What if such relatives are already in office when a President assumes office?
‣ The relatives are not ousted from their positions. What is prohibited is appointment or re- appointment.

PRESIDENTIAL PRIVILEGES

PRESIDENTIAL IMMUNITY FROM SUIT


‣ RULE — THE PRESIDENT IS ABSOLUTELY IMMUNE FROM SUIT DURING HIS TENURE
‣ Although the new Constitution has not reproduced the explicit guarantee of presidential immunity from suit under the
1973 Constitution, presidential immunity during tenure remains as part of the law. (Estrada v. Desierto 2001)
‣ RATIONALE — The rationale for the grant to the President of the privilege of immunity from suit is to assure the
exercise of presidential duties and functions free from any hindrance or distraction, considering that being the Chief
Executive of the Government is a job that, aside from requiring all of the office-holder's time, also demands undivided
attention.

‣ EXCEPT — IF THE PRESIDENT’S VOLUNTARILY WAIVES THE PRIVILEGE


‣ There is nothing in the Constitution or laws that would prevent the president from waiving the privilege. The
President may shed the protection afforded by the privilege and submit to the court’s jurisdiction. The choice of
whether to exercise the privilege or to waive belongs to him. (Soliven v. Judge Makasiar 1998)

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‣ What kinds of suits are covered under the immunity?
‣ All kinds of suits are covered. Criminal, civil and administrative. (Forbes v. Chuoco Tiaco)

‣ What is the scope of the immunity?


‣ All kinds of acts of the president during his tenure are covered, regardless of whether it is official or unofficial.

‣ NOTE — the remedy is to first impeach a president before prosecuting him for unofficial illegal acts, or wait for the end
of his tenure.
‣ Does a a sitting President enjoy immunity from suit for acts committed before his term as President?
‣ YES. This seems to be the implication.
‣ Who can invoke the immunity?
‣ Only the President himself. This privilege of immunity from suit pertains to the President by virtue of the office and
may be invoked only by the holder of the office, not by any other person in the President's behalf. Thus, an accused in
a criminal case in which the President is complainant cannot raise the presidential privilege as a defense to prevent
the case from proceeding against such accused. (Soliven v. Judge Makasiar 1998)
‣ Is the President still immune from suit after his tenure?
‣ YES, but only for official acts. The President is not immune for non-official acts (such as those illegal and criminal acts)

‣ SEE — Estrada v. Desierto, G.R. Nos. 146710-15, March 02, 2001


‣ After his tenure, the Chief Executive cannot invoke immunity from suit for civil damages arising out of acts done by
him while he was President which were not performed in the exercise of official duties.

‣ The 1987 Constitution has rejected the expansive notion of immunity in the Marcos Constitution. Once out of
office, even before the end of the six year term, immunity for non-official acts is lost. Such was the case of Joseph
Estrada. The cases filed against him were criminal in character. They involved plunder, bribery and graft and
corruption. By no stretch of the imagination could these crimes, especially plunder which carried the death pen-
alty, be covered by a mantle of immunity for a non-sitting president. The rule is that unlawful acts of public officials
are not acts of the State and the officer who acts illegally is not acting as such but stands in the same footing as
any other trespasser.
‣ What about cabinet secretaries, can they invoke presidential immunity?
‣ NO. Unless he was acting for an on behalf of the President

‣ SEE — Gloria v. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. 119903, August 15, 2000
‣ Even if the DECS Secretary is an alter ego of the President, he cannot invoke the President’s immunity from suit in
a case filed against him because the questioned acts are not the acts of the President but merely those of a
department Secretary.

‣ Is the Vice-President also immune from suit?


‣ No jurisprudence on this.

EXECUTIVE PRIVILEGE
‣ RULE — THE PRESIDENT HAS THE POWER TO WITHHOLD CERTAIN TYPES OF INFORMATION FROM THE COURTS, THE CONGRESS
AND THE PUBLIC

‣ What is “executive privilege”?


‣ It has been defined as “the right of the President and high-level executive branch officials to withhold information from
Congress, the courts, and ultimately, the public”. Thus, presidential conversations, correspondences, or discussions
during closed-door Cabinet meetings, like the internal deliberations of the Supreme Court and other collegiate courts,
or executive sessions of either House of Congress, are recognized as confidential. This kind of information cannot be
pried open by a co-equal branch of government. (Senate v. Ermita 2006)
‣ The claim of executive privilege is highly recognized in cases where the subject of the inquiry relates to a power
textually committed by the Constitution to the President, such as in the area of military and foreign relations. Under
our Constitution, the President is the repository of the commander-in-chief, appointing, pardoning and diplomatic
powers. Consistent with the doctrine of separation of powers, the information relating to these powers may enjoy
greater confidentiality than others (Neri v. Senate Committee 2008)

‣ What types of information are covered by executive privilege?


‣ The types of information include those which are of a nature that disclosure would subvert military or diplomatic
objectives, or information about the identity of persons who furnish information of violations of law, or information
about internal deliberations comprising the process by which government decisions are reached.

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‣ It is is recognized with respect to information the confidential nature of which is crucial to the fulfillment of the unique
role and responsibilities of the executive branch, or in those instances where exemption from disclosure is necessary
to the discharge of highly important executive responsibilities. The doctrine of executive privilege is thus premised on
the fact that certain information must, as a matter of necessity, be kept confidential in pursuit of the public interest.
The privilege being, by definition, an exemption from the obligation to disclose information, the necessity must be of
such high degree as to outweigh the public interest in enforcing that obligation in a particular case. (Senate vs Ermita
2006)

1. Conversations and correspondence between the President and the public official covered by this executive order

2. Military, diplomatic and other national security matters which in the interest of national security should not be
divulged

3. Information between inter-government agencies prior to the conclusion of treaties and executive agreements

4. Discussion in close-door Cabinet meetings

5. Matters affecting national security and public order.

‣ How must a claim of executive privilege be raised?


‣ A claim of privilege must be stated with sufficient particularity to enable Congress or the court to determine its
legitimacy.

‣ SEE — Senate vs Ermita, G.R. No. 169777, April 20, 2006


‣ Absent then a statement of the specific basis of a claim of executive privilege, there is no way of determining
whether it falls under one of the traditional privileges, or whether, given the circumstances in which it is made, it
should be respected. The lack of specificity renders an assessment of the potential harm resulting from disclosure
impossible. However, Congress must not require the executive to state the reasons for the claim with such
particularity as to compel disclosure of the information which the privilege is meant to protect. (Senate vs Ermita
2006)
‣ When Congress exercises its power of inquiry, the only way for department heads to exempt themselves therefrom
is by a valid claim of privilege. They are not exempt by the mere fact that they are department heads. Only one
executive official may be exempted from this power — the President on whom executive power is vested, hence,
beyond the reach of Congress except through the power of impeachment. It is based on her being the highest
official of the executive branch, and the due respect accorded to a co-equal branch of government which is
sanctioned by a long-standing custom.

‣ By the same token, members of the Supreme Court are also exempt from this power of inquiry. Unlike the
Presidency, judicial power is vested in a collegial body; hence, each member thereof is exempt on the basis not
only of separation of powers but also on the fiscal autonomy and the constitutional independence of the judiciary.

‣ Certainly, Congress has the right to know why the executive considers the requested information privileged. It
does not suffice to merely declare that the President, or an authorized head of office, has determined that it is so,
and that the President has not overturned that determination. Such declaration leaves Congress in the dark on
how the requested information could be classified as privileged. That the message is couched in terms that, on
first impression, do not seem like a claim of privilege only makes it more pernicious. It threatens to make Congress
doubly blind to the question of why the executive branch is not providing it with the information that it has
requested.

‣ A claim of privilege, being a claim of exemption from an obligation to disclose information, must, therefore, be
clearly asserted. The privilege belongs to the government and must be asserted by it; it can neither be claimed nor
waived by a private party. It is not to be lightly invoked. There must be a formal claim of privilege, lodged by the
head of the department which has control over the matter, after actual personal consideration by that officer. The
court itself must determine whether the circumstances are appropriate for the claim of privilege, and yet do so
without forcing a disclosure of the very thing the privilege is designed to protect.

‣ Absent then a statement of the specific basis of a claim of executive privilege, there is no way of determining
whether it falls under one of the traditional privileges, or whether, given the circumstances in which it is made, it
should be respected

‣ The doctrine of executive privilege is premised on the fact that certain informations must, as a matter of necessity,
be kept confidential in pursuit of the public interest. The privilege being, by definition, an exemption from the
obligation to disclose information, in this case to Congress, the necessity must be of such high degree as to
outweigh the public interest in enforcing that obligation in a particular case.

‣ In light of this highly exceptional nature of the privilege, the Court finds it essential to limit to the President the
power to invoke the privilege. She may of course authorize the Executive Secretary to invoke the privilege on her
behalf, in which case the Executive Secretary must state that the authority is "By order of the President," which
means that he personally consulted with her. The privilege being an extraordinary power, it must be wielded only

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by the highest official in the executive hierarchy. In other words, the President may not authorize her subordinates
to exercise such power

‣ Congress undoubtedly has a right to information from the executive branch whenever it is sought in aid of
legislation. If the executive branch withholds such information on the ground that it is privileged, it must so assert
it and state the reason therefor and why it must be respected.

ELEMENTS OF EXECUTIVE PRIVILEGE


1. IT IS THE POWER OF THE GOVERNMENT TO WITHHOLD MILITARY, DIPLOMATIC AND OTHER NATIONAL SECURITY MATTERS
FROM THE PUBLIC, THE COURTS, AND THE CONGRESS.

‣ There are certain types of information which the government may withhold from the public like military, diplomatic and
national security secrets. Alluding to foreign jurisprudence, it was ruled that the President and those who assist him
must be free to explore alternatives in the process of shaping policies and making decisions and to do so in a way
many would be unwilling to express except privately. (Almonte v. Vasquez, 1995)
‣ The privilege covers —
1. Military;

2. Diplomatic; and,

3. Other national security matters, such as:

a. Presidential conversations, correspondences, and discussions in closed-door cabinet meetings (Presidential


Communications Privilege)

b. Deliberations comprising part of a process by which governmental decisions and policies are formulated
(Deliberative Process Privilege)

‣ This is an exception to the constitutional right to information and the power of inquiry of congress in aid of legislation

‣ The Constitution of the Philippines recognizes the right of the people to information on matters of public concern
and guarantees access to official records, documents, and papers pertaining to official acts, transactions, or
decisions, as well as to government research data used as basis for policy development, subject to such
limitations as may be provided by law (Sec. 7, Art. 3, 1987 Constitution)

‣ The rule on confidentiality based on executive privilege is fundamental to the operation of government and rooted in
the separation of powers under the Constitution. (Senate of the Philippines v. Ermita, 2006)
‣ Diplomatic negotiations enjoy a presumptive privilege against disclosure (AKBAYAN v. Aquino)
‣ While the constitutional right to information includes official information on on-going negotiations before a final
contract, such information does not cover recognized exceptions like privileged information, military and diplomatic
secrets and similar matters affecting national interest. These cannot be disclosed even if they constitute definite
propositions. (AKBAYAN v. Aquino)
‣ Elements of “presidential communications privilege” (Neri vs Senate) —
1. The protected communications must relate to a “quintessential and non-delegable presidential power.”

2. The communication must be authored or “solicited and received” by a close advisor of the President or the
President himself. The judicial test is that an advisor must be in “operational proximity” with the President; and

3. The presidential communications privilege remains a qualified privilege that may be overcome by a showing of
adequate need, such that the information sought “likely contains important evidence” and by the unavailability of
the information elsewhere by an appropriate investigating authority.
‣ Closely related to the “presidential communications” privilege is the deliberative process privilege recognized in the
United States, which covers documents reflecting advisory opinions, recommendations and deliberations comprising
part of a process by which governmental decisions and policies are formulated, Clearly, the privilege accorded to
diplomatic negotiations follows as a logical consequence from the privileged character of the deliberative process
(AKBAYAN v. Aquino)
‣ Information on inter-government exchanges prior to the conclusion of treaties and executive agreements may be
subject to reasonable safeguards for the sake of national interest. (Chavez vs PCGG, 1998)
2. IT IS THE INFORMATION ITSELF THAT IS PRIVILEGED, NOT THE EXECUTIVE OFFICIALS THEMSELVES
‣ When Congress exercises its powers of inquiry, the department heads are not exempt by the mere fact that they are
department heads. Accordingly, only one executive official may be exempted from the power of inquiry of Congress —
the President upon whom executive power is vested and is beyond the reach of Congress except through the power
of impeachment. (Senate of the Philippines v. Ermita, 2006)
3. THERE MUST BE A FORMAL CLAIM OF THE PRIVILEGE WITH SPECIFIC BASIS GIVEN

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‣ Congress has the right to know why the executive considers the requested information privileged.” It does not suffice
to merely declare that the President, or an authorized representative, has determined that it is so. In the absence of a
specific basis for the claim, there is no way of determining whether it falls under one of the traditional privileges or
whether it should be respected. (Senate of the Philippines v. Ermita, 2006)
‣ The specific basis of the claim must be given for the courts to judge whether or not the claim for executive privilege is
valid or not

‣ For the claim of executive privilege to be invoked, there must be a formal claim of the privilege, lodged by the head of
the department which has control of the matter, and that a formal and proper claim of the privilege requires a “precise
and certain reason” for preserving confidentiality, but Congress must not require the executive to state the reasons for
the claim with such particularity as to compel the disclosure of the information which the privilege is meant to protect.
This is a matter of respect for a coordinate and co-equal department (Neri vs Senate)

EXCEPTION TO EXECUTIVE PRIVILEGE


‣ INFORMATION COVERED BY EXECUTIVE PRIVILEGE MAY BE DISCLOSED IF THERE IS A “SUFFICIENT SHOWING OF NEED”
‣ The standard to be employed in determining whether there is a sufficient interest in favor of disclosure is the strong
“sufficient showing of need” which must be shown whether that party is Congress or a private citizen. (AKBAYAN v.
Aquino)
‣ Information, even if confidential under executive privilege, must be disclosed if the right to information outweighs the
public interest of secrecy.

‣ When the government has claimed executive privilege, and it has established that the information is indeed covered
by the same, then the party demanding it, if it is to overcome the privilege, must show that the information is vital, not
simply for the satisfaction of its curiosity, but for its ability to effectively and reasonably participate in social, political,
and economic decision-making.
‣ Note that it is for the Courts to decide whether the information must be disclosed, based on the reasons and basis
given for the claim of executive privilege in relation to the circumstances

JURISPRUDENCE ON THE DOCTRINE OF EXECUTIVE PRIVILEGE


‣ SENATE VS ERMITA, G.R. NO. 169777, APRIL 20, 2006
‣ The phrase "executive privilege" is not new in this jurisdiction. It has been used even prior to the promulgation of the
1986 Constitution. Being of American origin, it is best understood in light of how it has been defined and used in the
legal literature of the United States.

‣ Schwartz defines executive privilege as "the power of the Government to withhold information from the public, the
courts, and the Congress.” Similarly, Rozell defines it as "the right of the President and high-level executive branch
officers to withhold information from Congress, the courts, and ultimately the public.”

‣ Executive privilege is, nonetheless, not a clear or unitary concept. It has encompassed claims of varying kinds. Tribe,
in fact, comments that while it is customary to employ the phrase "executive privilege," it may be more accurate to
speak of executive privileges "since presidential refusals to furnish information may be actuated by any of at least
three distinct kinds of considerations, and may be asserted, with differing degrees of success, in the context of either
judicial or legislative investigations.”

‣ One variety of the privilege, Tribe explains, is the state secrets privilege invoked by U.S. Presidents, beginning with
Washington, on the ground that the information is of such nature that its disclosure would subvert crucial military or
diplomatic objectives. Another variety is the informer’s privilege, or the privilege of the Government not to disclose the
identity of persons who furnish information of violations of law to officers charged with the enforcement of that law.
Finally, a generic privilege for internal deliberations has been said to attach to intragovernmental documents reflecting
advisory opinions, recommendations and deliberations comprising part of a process by which governmental decisions
and policies are formulated.

‣ Tribe’s comment is supported by the ruling in In re Sealed Case, thus: Since the beginnings of our nation, executive
officials have claimed a variety of privileges to resist disclosure of information the confidentiality of which they felt was
crucial to fulfillment of the unique role and responsibilities of the executive branch of our government. Courts ruled
early that the executive had a right to withhold documents that might reveal military or state secrets. The courts have
also granted the executive a right to withhold the identity of government informers in some circumstances and a
qualified right to withhold information related to pending investigations. x x x"69 (Emphasis and underscoring
supplied)

‣ The entry in Black’s Law Dictionary on "executive privilege" is similarly instructive regarding the scope of the doctrine.
This privilege, based on the constitutional doctrine of separation of powers, exempts the executive from disclosure
requirements applicable to the ordinary citizen or organization where such exemption is necessary to the discharge of

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highly important executive responsibilities involved in maintaining governmental operations, and extends not only to
military and diplomatic secrets but also to documents integral to an appropriate exercise of the executive’ domestic
decisional and policy making functions, that is, those documents reflecting the frank expression necessary in intra-
governmental advisory and deliberative communications.

‣ That a type of information is recognized as privileged does not, however, necessarily mean that it would be
considered privileged in all instances. For in determining the validity of a claim of privilege, the question that must be
asked is not only whether the requested information falls within one of the traditional privileges, but also whether that
privilege should be honored in a given procedural setting.

‣ The leading case on executive privilege in the United States is U.S. v. Nixon, decided in 1974. In issue in that case
was the validity of President Nixon’s claim of executive privilege against a subpoena issued by a district court
requiring the production of certain tapes and documents relating to the Watergate investigations. The claim of
privilege was based on the President’s general interest in the confidentiality of his conversations and correspondence.
The U.S. Court held that while there is no explicit reference to a privilege of confidentiality in the U.S. Constitution, it is
constitutionally based to the extent that it relates to the effective discharge of a President’s powers. The Court,
nonetheless, rejected the President’s claim of privilege, ruling that the privilege must be balanced against the public
interest in the fair administration of criminal justice. Notably, the Court was careful to clarify that it was not there
addressing the issue of claims of privilege in a civil litigation or against congressional demands for information.

‣ Cases in the U.S. which involve claims of executive privilege against Congress are rare. Despite frequent assertion of
the privilege to deny information to Congress, beginning with President Washington’s refusal to turn over treaty
negotiation records to the House of Representatives, the U.S. Supreme Court has never adjudicated the issue.
However, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, in a case decided earlier in the same year as
Nixon, recognized the President’s privilege over his conversations against a congressional subpoena. Anticipating the
balancing approach adopted by the U.S. Supreme Court in Nixon, the Court of Appeals weighed the public interest
protected by the claim of privilege against the interest that would be served by disclosure to the Committee. Ruling
that the balance favored the President, the Court declined to enforce the subpoena.

‣ In this jurisdiction, the doctrine of executive privilege was recognized by this Court in Almonte v. Vasquez. Almonte
used the term in reference to the same privilege subject of Nixon. It quoted the following portion of the Nixon decision
which explains the basis for the privilege: "The expectation of a President to the confidentiality of his conversations
and correspondences, like the claim of confidentiality of judicial deliberations, for example, has all the values to which
we accord deference for the privacy of all citizens and, added to those values, is the necessity for protection of the
public interest in candid, objective, and even blunt or harsh opinions in Presidential decision-making. A President and
those who assist him must be free to explore alternatives in the process of shaping policies and making decisions and
to do so in a way many would be unwilling to express except privately. These are the considerations justifying a
presumptive privilege for Presidential communications. The privilege is fundamental to the operation of government
and inextricably rooted in the separation of powers under the Constitution x x x " (Emphasis and underscoring
supplied)

‣ Almonte involved a subpoena duces tecum issued by the Ombudsman against the therein petitioners. It did not
involve, as expressly stated in the decision, the right of the people to information. Nonetheless, the Court recognized
that there are certain types of information which the government may withhold from the public, thus acknowledging, in
substance if not in name, that executive privilege may be claimed against citizens’ demands for information.

‣ In Chavez v. PCGG, the Court held that this jurisdiction recognizes the common law holding that there is a
"governmental privilege against public disclosure with respect to state secrets regarding military, diplomatic and other
national security matters.” The same case held that closed-door Cabinet meetings are also a recognized limitation on
the right to information.

‣ Similarly, in Chavez v. Public Estates Authority, the Court ruled that the right to information does not extend to matters
recognized as "privileged information under the separation of powers,” by which the Court meant Presidential
conversations, correspondences, and discussions in closed-door Cabinet meetings. It also held that information on
military and diplomatic secrets and those affecting national security, and information on investigations of crimes by
law enforcement agencies before the prosecution of the accused were exempted from the right to information.

‣ From the above discussion on the meaning and scope of executive privilege, both in the United States and in this
jurisdiction, a clear principle emerges. Executive privilege, whether asserted against Congress, the courts, or the
public, is recognized only in relation to certain types of information of a sensitive character. While executive privilege is
a constitutional concept, a claim thereof may be valid or not depending on the ground invoked to justify it and the
context in which it is made. Noticeably absent is any recognition that executive officials are exempt from the duty to
disclose information by the mere fact of being executive officials. Indeed, the extraordinary character of the
exemptions indicates that the presumption inclines heavily against executive secrecy and in favor of disclosure.

‣ NERI VS SENATE, G.R. NO. 180643,  SEPTEMBER 4, 2008


‣ Executive privilege is not a personal privilege, but one that adheres to the Office of the President. It exists to protect
public interest, not to benefit a particular public official. Its purpose, among others, is to assure that the nation will
receive the benefit of candid, objective and untrammeled communication and exchange of information between the

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President and his/her advisers in the process of shaping or forming policies and arriving at decisions in the exercise of
the functions of the Presidency under the Constitution. The confidentiality of the President’s conversations and
correspondence is not unique. It is akin to the confidentiality of judicial deliberations. It possesses the same value as
the right to privacy of all citizens and more, because it is dictated by public interest and the constitutionally ordained
separation of governmental powers.

POWER OF APPOINTMENT; APPOINTMENTS BAN

Section 16. The President shall nominate and, with the consent of the Commission on Appointments, appoint the heads
of the executive departments, ambassadors, other public ministers and consuls, or officers of the armed forces from the
rank of colonel or naval captain, and other officers whose appointments are vested in him in this Constitution. He shall
also appoint all other officers of the Government whose appointments are not otherwise provided for by law, and those
whom he may be authorized by law to appoint. The Congress may, by law, vest the appointment of other officers lower in
rank in the President alone, in the courts, or in the heads of departments, agencies, commissions, or boards.

The President shall have the power to make appointments during the recess of the Congress, whether voluntary or
compulsory, but such appointments shall be effective only until disapproved by the Commission on Appointments or until
the next adjournment of the Congress.

Section 14. Appointments extended by an Acting President shall remain effective, unless revoked by the elected
President, within ninety days from his assumption or reassumption of office.

Section 15. Two months immediately before the next presidential elections and up to the end of his term, a President or
Acting President shall not make appointments, except temporary appointments to executive positions when continued
vacancies therein will prejudice public service or endanger public safety.

ARTICLE 8 — JUDICIAL DEPARTMENT


Section 4. (1) The Supreme Court shall be composed of a Chief Justice and fourteen Associate Justices. It may sit en
banc or in its discretion, in division of three, five, or seven Members. Any vacancy shall be filled within ninety days from
the occurrence thereof.

Section 9. The Members of the Supreme Court and judges of the lower courts shall be appointed by the President from a
list of at least three nominees prepared by the Judicial and Bar Council for every vacancy. Such appointments need no
confirmation.

For the lower courts, the President shall issue the appointments within ninety days from the submission of the list.

‣ NOTE — Read this concept in relation to the Civil Service Commission and the Civil Service System in Art. 9B

NATURE OF THE POWER OF APPOINTMENT


‣ What is “appointment”?
‣ It is the selection, by the authority vested with the power, of an individual who is to exercise the functions of a given
office. It is distinguished from designation in that the latter simply means the imposition of additional duties, usually by
law, on a person already in the public service.

‣ An "appointment" to a public office is the unequivocal act of designating or selecting by one having the authority
therefor of an individual to discharge and perform the duties and functions of an office or trust.

‣ The appointment is deemed complete once the last act required of the appointing authority has been complied with
and its acceptance thereafter by the appointee in order to render it effective. (Bermudez vs Torres 1999)

‣ What is a “commission”?
‣ It is the written evidence of the appointment

‣ The Power of Appointment is Executive in Nature


‣ Since appointment to office is an executive function, the clear implication is that the legislature may not usurp such
function. The legislature may create an office and prescribe the qualifications of the person who may hold the office,

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but it may neither specify who shall be appointed to such office nor actually appoint him. The appointing power is the
exclusive prerogative of the President, upon which, no limitations may be imposed by Congress, except those
resulting from the limited exercise of power to prescribe the qualifications to a given appointive office. (Manalang v.
Quitoriano 1954)
‣ The power to appoint is the prerogative of the President, except in those instances when the Constitution provides
otherwise. Usurpation of this fundamentally Executive power by the Legislative and Judicial branches violates the
system of separation of powers that inheres in our democratic republican government.
‣ NOTE — The appointing authority of the President, however, should not be confused with the authority of the
legislature to impose additional duties on existing offices. Congress may decide, within Constitutional limits, who may
exercise appointing power.

‣ SEE — Bermudez vs Torres, G.R. No. 131429, August 4, 1999


‣ Appointment necessarily calls for an exercise of discretion on the part of the appointing authority. The power to
appoint is, in essence, discretionary. The appointing power has the right of choice which he may exercise freely
according to his judgment, deciding for himself who is best qualified among those who have Indeed, it may rightly be
said that the right of choice is the heart of the power to appoint. In the exercise of the power of appointment,
discretion is an integral part thereof. the necessary qualifications and eligibilities. It is a prerogative of the appointing
power.
‣ When the Constitution or the law clothes the President with the power to appoint a subordinate officer, such
conferment must be understood as necessarily carrying with it an ample discretion of whom to appoint. It should be
here pertinent to state that the President is the head of government whose authority includes the power of control
over all "executive departments, bureaus and offices." Control means the authority of an empowered officer to alter or
modify, or even nullify or set aside, what a subordinate officer has done in the performance of his duties, as well as to
substitute the judgment of the latter, as and when the former deems it to be appropriate. Expressed in another way,
the President has the power to assume directly the functions of an executive department, bureau and office. It can
accordingly be inferred therefrom that the President can interfere in the exercise of discretion of officials under him or
altogether ignore their recommendations.
‣ SEE— Flores vs Drilon, G.R. No. 104732, June 22, 1993
‣ An "appointment" is the designation of a person, by the person or persons having authority therefor, to discharge the
duties of some office or trust or t he selection or designation of a person, by the person or persons having authority
therefor, to fill an office or public function and discharge the duties of the same.

‣ Appointment as the selection, by the authority vested with the power, of an individual who is to exercise the functions
of a given office.

‣ The power to appoint is, in essence, discretionary. The appointing power has the right of choice which he may
exercise freely according to his judgment, deciding for himself who is best qualified among those who have the
necessary qualifications and eligibilities. It is a prerogative of the appointing power.

‣ Indeed, the power of choice is the heart of the power to appoint. Appointment involves an exercise of discretion of
whom to appoint; it is not a ministerial act of issuing appointment papers to the appointee. In other words, the choice
of the appointee is a fundamental component of the appointing power.

‣ Hence, when Congress clothes the President with the power to appoint an officer, it (Congress) cannot at the same
time limit the choice of the President to only one candidate. Once the power of appointment is conferred on the
President, such conferment necessarily carries the discretion of whom to appoint. Even on the pretext of prescribing
the qualifications of the officer, Congress may not abuse such power as to divest the appointing authority, directly or
indirectly, of his discretion to pick his own choice. Consequently, when the qualifications prescribed by Congress can
only be met by one individual, such enactment effectively eliminates the discretion of the appointing power to choose
and constitutes an irregular restriction on the power of appointment.

‣ In the case at bar, while Congress willed that the subject posts be filled with a presidential appointee for the first year
of its operations from the effectivity of R.A. 7227, the proviso nevertheless limits the appointing authority to only one
eligible, i.e., the incumbent Mayor of Olongapo City. Since only one can qualify for the posts in question, the President
is precluded from exercising his discretion to choose whom to appoint. Such supposed power of appointment, sans
the essential element of choice, is no power at all and goes against the very nature itself of appointment.

‣ While it may be viewed that the proviso merely sets the qualifications of the officer during the first year of operations
of SBMA, i.e., he must be the Mayor of Olongapo City, it is manifestly an abuse of congressional authority to prescribe
qualifications where only one, and no other, can qualify. Accordingly, while the conferment of the appointing power on
the President is a perfectly valid legislative act, the proviso limiting his choice to one person is certainly an
encroachment on his prerogative.
‣ SEE — Luego v. Civil Service Commission, 143 SCRA 327
‣ Appointment is essentially a discretionary power and must be performed by the officer in which it is vested according
to his best lights, the only condition being that the appointee, if issued a permanent appointment, should possess the

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minimum qualification requirements, including the Civil Service eligibility prescribed by law for the position. This
discretion also includes the determination of the nature or character of the appointment, i.e., whether the appointment
is temporary or permanent.
‣ Is the appointing authority bound by the restrictions of a statutory next-in-rank rule?
‣ NO. One who is next in rank is entitled to preferential consideration for promotion to the higher vacancy but it does
not necessarily follow that he and no one else can be appointed. The rule neither guarantees a vested right to the
holder nor imposes a ministerial duty on the appointing authority to promote such person to the next higher position.
The power to appoint is a matter of discretion. (Santiago, Jr. v. Civil Service Commission 1989)
‣ May the Civil Service Commission disapprove an appointment and require the appointment of another person
whom it believes is more qualified for the position?
‣ NO. The appointing authority is given ample discretion in the selection and appointment of qualified persons to vacant
positions among those who are qualified. It is well established that the Commission may not substitute its judgment
for an executive's appointment of a qualified appointee. (Central Bank v. Civil Service Commission 1989)
‣ The sole function of the Commission is to attest to the qualification of the appointee. (Luego v. Civil Service
Commission 1986)
‣ BUT — It is a different matter, however, when, after having extended an appointment that is immediately accepted, the
appointing authority withdraws the same and extends it to someone else. In such a situation the Civil Service is within
its authority when it orders the reinstatement of the first appointee. The withdrawal of an appointment already
accepted would be tantamount to removal and would violate security of tenure. (Aquino v. Civil Service Commission
1992)

WHO GETS TO FILL VACANCIES IN GOVERNMENT OFFICES?


1. DETERMINED BY THE CONSTITUTION — THE CONSTITUTION DIRECTLY PROVIDES THAT THE PRESIDENT IS THE APPOINTING
AUTHORITY
a. Heads of the executive departments, ambassadors, other public ministers and consuls, or officers of the armed
forces from the rank of colonel or naval captain, and other officers whose appointments are vested in the President
by the Constitution

b. All other officers of the Government whose appointments are not otherwise provided for by law

‣ Thus, when a law creating an office is silent as to who should appoint the corresponding officer, the President is
the appointing authority

‣ NOTE — In these cases, the President's power to appoint is a self-executing power vested by the Constitution itself
and thus not subject to legislative limitations or conditions, other than those imposed by the Constitution itself

2. DETERMINED BY LAW — THE CONSTITUTION DELEGATES TO THE CONGRESS THE CHOICE OF WHO IS THE APPOINTING
AUTHORITY
‣ Officers “lower in rank” than enumerated in the Constitution

‣ The Congress may, by law, vest the appointment of other officers lower in rank in the—

a. President alone

b. Courts, or

c. Heads of departments, agencies, commissions, or boards

‣ NOTE — in this case, since Congress is empower to decide in whom to vest the power of appointment. Congress
does not make the appointment but merely decides who has the power to appoint. Accordingly, it may prescribe
limitations and conditions. When Congress, by law, vests the appointment of inferior officers in the heads of
departments it may limit and restrict power of removal as it seem best for the public interest. The constitutional
authority in Congress to thus vest the appointment implies authority to limit, restrict, and regulate the removal by such
laws as Congress may enact in relation to the officers so appointed. The head of a department has no constitutional
prerogative of appointment to officers independently of legislation of Congress, and by such legislation he must be
governed, not only in making appointments but in all that is incident thereto. (U.S. v. Perkins)

‣ SEE — Rufino vs Enriga, G.R. No. 139554, July 21, 2006


‣ Congress can only vest the power to appoint officers “lower in rank” and not those officers which the
Constitution specifically vests in the President to appoint
‣ Thus, a board head cannot appoint board members with co-equal rank as him, the law can only authorise him
to appoint those lower in rank.

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‣ When the authority is given to head of collegial bodies, it is to the chairman that the authority is given and not
to the body. But he can appoint only officers "lower in rank," and not officers equal in rank to him. Thus a
Chairman may not appoint a fellow member of a Board.

‣ Congress can only vest the power to appoint in the three offices enumerated in Sec. 16
‣ In a department in the Executive branch, the head is the Secretary. The law may not authorize the
Undersecretary, acting as such Undersecretary, to appoint lower-ranked officers in the Executive department.
In an agency, the power is vested in the head of the agency for it would be preposterous to vest it in the
agency itself. In a commission, the head is the chairperson of the commission. In a board, the head is also the
chairperson of the board. In the last three situations, the law may not also authorize officers other than the
heads of the agency, commission, or board to appoint lower-ranked officers.

‣ The grant of the power to appoint to the heads of agencies, commissions, or boards is a matter of legislative
grace. Congress has the discretion to grant to, or withhold from, the heads of agencies, commissions, or
boards the power to appoint lower-ranked officers. If it so grants, Congress may impose certain conditions for
the exercise of such legislative delegation, like requiring the recommendation of subordinate officers or the
concurrence of the other members of the commission or board.

‣ The Constitution authorizes Congress to vest the power to appoint lower-ranked officers specifically in the
"heads" of the specified offices, and in no other person. The word "heads" refers to the chairpersons of the
commissions or boards and not to their members, for several reasons.

‣ What if the law requires that the appointment be with the recommendation of another officer (such as the
recommendation of the Secretary of Justice? Is such recommendation indispensable to a valid appointment?
‣ NO. Such law requiring a recommendation should be interpreted, as it is normally so understood, to be a mere
advise, exhortation or indorsement, which is essentially persuasive in character and not binding or obligatory upon
the party to whom it is made. The recommendation is here nothing really more than advisory in nature. The
President, being the head of the Executive Department, could very well disregard or do away with the action of the
departments, bureaus or offices even in the exercise of discretionary authority, and in so opting, he cannot be said
as having acted beyond the scope of his authority. (Bermudez vs Torres 1999)

PRESIDENTIAL POWER OF APPOINTMENT


‣ RULE — THE PRESIDENT IS AUTHORIZED TO APPOINT —
1. Heads of the executive departments, ambassadors, other public ministers and consuls, or officers of the armed
forces from the rank of colonel or naval captain, and other officers whose appointments are vested in him in this
Constitution

2. All other officers of the Government whose appointments are not otherwise provided for by law

3. Those whom he may be authorized by law to appoint

LIMITATIONS ON THE POWER TO APPOINT


1. THE PRESIDENT CANNOT APPOINT HIS SPOUSE AND RELATIVES BY CONSANGUINITY OR AFFINITY WITHIN THE FOURTH CIVIL
DEGREE AS —

a. Members of the Constitutional Commissions

b. Ombudsman

c. Secretaries, Undersecretaries, chairmen or heads of bureaus or offices, including government-owned or -controlled


corporations (Art. 7, Sec. 13)

2. APPOINTMENTS EXTENDED BY AN ACTING PRESIDENT SHALL REMAIN EFFECTIVE UNLESS REVOKED BY THE ELECTED PRESIDENT
WITHIN NINETY DAYS FROM HIS ASSUMPTION OF OFFICE (ART. 7, SEC. 14)

3. THE PRESIDENT MUST OBSERVE THE APPOINTMENTS BAN (ART. 7, SEC. 15)
‣ RULE — The President cannot make appointments within two months immediately before the next presidential
elections and up to the end of his term
‣ Does the election ban cover appointments in the judiciary?
‣ YES. The President cannot appoint members of the judiciary even during the appointments ban.

‣ SEE — In re: Valenzuela A.M. No. 98-5-01-SC November 9, 1998


‣ The Court's view is that during the period stated in Section 15. Article VII of the Constitution — "(t)wo
months immediatey before the next presidential elections and up to the end his term" — the President is
neither required to make appointments to the courts nor allowed to do so; and that Sections 4(1) and 9 of
Article VIII simply mean that the President is required to fill vacancies in the courts within the time frames

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provided therein unless prohibited by Section 15 of Article VII. It is not noteworthy that the prohibition on
appointments comes into effect only once every six years.

‣ NOTE — this provision applies only to presidential appointments. There is no law that prohibits local executive
officials from making appointments during the last days of their tenure. (De Rama v. CA 2001)

‣ EXCEPT — Appointments to the following are NOT covered by the appointments ban —

a. Temporary appointments to executive positions when continued vacancies therein will prejudice public service or
endanger public safety

b. Vacancies in the Supreme Court

‣ SEE — De Castro vs Judicial and Bar Council, G. R. No. 191002, March 17, 2010
‣ In this case, the Court said the President Macapagal-Arroyo could fill the vacancy left by retiring Chief
Justice Puno even during the appointments ban. This was because the wording of Art. 8, Sec. 4 (vacancies
in the SC) is different from the wording in Art. 8, Sec. 9 (vacancies in the lower courts). Vacancies in the SC
should be filled up within 90 days from such vacancy, thus this operates as an exception to the
appointments ban. On the other hand, the vacancies in lower courts merely needs to be filled within 90
days from the submission of the list by the JBC.

4. SOME APPOINTMENTS NEED THE CONFIRMATION OF THE COMMISSION ON APPOINTMENTS (ART. 7, SEC. 16)
‣ These are —
a. Heads of the executive departments

b. Ambassadors

c. Ether public ministers and consuls, or officers of the armed forces from the rank of colonel or naval captain, and

d. Other officers whose appointments are vested in him in this Constitution

‣ Such as —

i. Sectoral representatives (Art. 6, Sec. 5)


ii. Members of the Constitutional Commissions (Art. 9, B, Sec. 1[2]; C, Sec. 1[2]; D, Sec. 1[2])
iii. Ombudsman and his deputies (Art. 9, Sec. 9)
‣ NOTE — The enumeration means that Congress may not give to any other officer the power to appoint the above
enumerated officers. This list is EXCLUSIVE. Congress CANNOT make it a condition in a law that a presidential
appointment should be confirmed by the Commission on Appointments even if it falls under those offices under the
Constitution which requires no such confirmation. To do so would be, in effect, a constitutional amendment. (Calderon
vs Carale 1992). In other words, the list of those offices in the Constitution requiring the confirmation of the
Commission on Appointments is exclusive, it cannot be expanded by ordinary legislation.

5. APPOINTMENTS IN THE JUDICIARY MUST FIRST PASS THROUGH THE JUDICIAL AND BAR COUNCIL (ART. 8, SEC. 9)
6. IN THE PROPER CASES, THE PRESIDENT MUST OBSERVE THE REQUIREMENTS ESTABLISHED BY LAW
‣ The presidential power of appointment may also be limited by Congress through its power to prescribe qualifications
for public office; and the judiciary may annul an appointment made by the President if the appointee is not qualified or
has not been validly confirmed

KINDS OF PRESIDENTIAL APPOINTMENTS


1. PERMANENT OR TEMPORARY
a. Permanent — those extended to persons possessing the requisite eligibility and are thus protracted by the
constitutional guarantee of security of tenure

b. Temporary — given to persons without such eligibility, revocable at will and without necessary of just cause or valid
investigation, made on the understanding that the appointing power has not yet decided on a permanent appointee
and that the temporary appointee may be replaced at any time a permanence choice is made.

‣ As such, they are not subject to confirmation by the Commission on Appointments (Valencia vs Peralta)

2. REGULAR OR AD-INTERIM
a. Regular — Made by the President while Congress is in session. It takes effect only after confirmation of the
Commission on Appointments (if required_ and once approved, continues until the end of the term of the appointee.

b. Ad-interim — one made by the President while Congress is not in session (in recess, where the Commission on
Appointments does not meet). It takes effect immediately, but ceases to be valid if disapproved by the Commission
on Appointments or until the next adjournment of the Congress. In the latter case, the appointment is deemed “by-
passed” through inaction. The ad-interim appointment is intended to prevent interruptions in vital government

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services that would otherwise result from prolonged vacancies in government offices including the three
constitutional commissions.
3. APPOINTMENTS BY ACTING PRESIDENTS
‣ These are considered valid and effective unless revoked by the elected President, within ninety days from his
assumption or reassumption of office.

JURISPRUDENCE ON REGULAR VS AD-INTERIM APPOINTMENTS


‣ What is the nature of ad-interim appointments?
‣ The Constitution imposes no condition on the effectivity of an ad interim appointment, and thus an ad interim
appointment takes effect immediately. The appointee can at once assume office and exercise, as a de jure officer, all
the powers pertaining to the office. (Matibag vs Benipayo 2002)

‣ Is an “ad-interim” appointment, permanent in character?

‣ YES. SEE — Matibag vs Benipayo, G.R. No. 149036 April 2, 2002

‣ An ad-interim appointment is a permanent appointment because it takes effect immediately and can no longer be
withdrawn by the President once the appointee has qualified into office. The fact that it is subject to confirmation
by the Commission on Appointments does not alter is permanent character.

‣ The Constitution itself makes an ad interim appointment permanent in character by making it effective until
disapproved by the Commission on Appointments or until the next adjournment of Congress.

‣ The ad interim appointment remains effective until such disapproval or next adjournment, signifying that it can no
longer be withdrawn or revoked by the President. The fear that the President can withdraw or revoke at any time
and for any reason an ad interim appointment is utterly without basis.

‣ An ad interim appointment is disapproved certainly for a reason other than that its provisional period has expired.
Said appointment is of course distinguishable from an ‘acting’ appointment which is merely temporary, good until
another permanent appointment is issued

‣ What is the difference between regular and ad-interim appointments?


‣ SEE — Pacete vs. Secretary of the Commission on Appointments, 40 SCRA 58 (1971).
‣ A distinction is thus made between the exercise of such presidential prerogative requiring confirmation by the
Commission on Appointments when Congress is in session and when it is in recess. In the former, the President
nominates, and only upon the consent of the Commission on Appointments may the person thus named assume
office. It is not so with reference to ad interim appointments. It takes effect at once. The individual chosen may
thus qualify and perform his function without loss of time. His title to such office is complete. In the language of
the Constitution, the appointment is effective ‘until disapproval by the Commission on Appointments or until the
next adjournment of the Congress.

‣ SEE — Matibag vs Benipayo, G.R. No. 149036 April 2, 2002


‣ An ad interim appointee who has qualified and assumed office becomes at that moment a government employee
and therefore part of the civil service. He enjoys the constitutional protection that "no officer or employee in the
civil service shall be removed or suspended except for cause provided by law.”

‣ Thus, an ad interim appointment becomes complete and irrevocable once the appointee has qualified into office.
The withdrawal or revocation of an ad interim appointment is possible only if it is communicated to the appointee
before the moment he qualifies, and any withdrawal or revocation thereafter is tantamount to removal from office.
Once an appointee has qualified, he acquires a legal right to the office which is protected not only by statute but
also by the Constitution. He can only be removed for cause, after notice and hearing, consistent with the
requirements of due process.

‣ An ad interim appointment can be terminated for two causes specified in the Constitution. The first cause is the
disapproval of his ad interim appointment by the Commission on Appointments. The second cause is the
adjournment of Congress without the Commission on Appointments acting on his appointment. These two causes
are resolutory conditions expressly imposed by the Constitution on all ad interim appointments. These resolutory
conditions constitute, in effect, a Sword of Damocles over the heads of ad interim appointees. No one, however,
can complain because it is the Constitution itself that places the Sword of Damocles over the heads of the ad
interim appointees.

‣ While an ad interim appointment is permanent and irrevocable except as provided by law, an appointment or
designation in a temporary or acting capacity can be withdrawn or revoked at the pleasure of the appointing
power. A temporary or acting appointee does not enjoy any security of tenure, no matter how briefly. This is the
kind of appointment that the Constitution prohibits the President from making to the three independent
constitutional commissions, including the COMELEC.

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‣ May the ad-interim appointment of persons be continuously renewed by the President (one and the same
person)?
‣ IT DEPENDS. SEE — Matibag vs Benipayo, G.R. No. 149036 April 2, 2002
‣ It cannot be renewed — if the ad interim appointee disapproved by the Commission on Appointments can no
longer be extended a new appointment. The disapproval is a final decision of the Commission on Appointments in
the exercise of its checking power on the appointing authority of the President. The disapproval is a decision on
the merits, being a refusal by the Commission on Appointments to give its consent after deliberating on the
qualifications of the appointee. Since the Constitution does not provide for any appeal from such decision, the
disapproval is final and binding on the appointee as well as on the appointing power. In this instance, the President
can no longer renew the appointment not because of the constitutional prohibition on reappointment, but because
of a final decision by the Commission on Appointments to withhold its consent to the appointment.

‣ It can be renewed — If the ad interim appointment is by-passed because of lack of time or failure of the
Commission on Appointments to organize is another matter. A by-passed appointment is one that has not been
finally acted upon on the merits by the Commission on Appointments at the close of the session of Congress.
There is no final decision by the Commission on Appointments to give or withhold its consent to the appointment
as required by the Constitution. Absent such decision, the President is free to renew the ad interim appointment of
a by-passed appointee.

STEPS IN THE APPOINTING PROCESS


1. Nomination by the President

2. Acceptance of the Nomination by the appointee

3. Confirmation by the Commission on Appointments (if required)

4. Issuance of the Commission

‣ NOTE — An appointment is deemed complete only upon its acceptance. Pending such acceptance, which is optional to
the appointee, the appointment may still validly withdrawn. (Lacson vs Romero)

POWER TO DISCIPLINE OR REMOVE


‣ RULE — THE POWER TO DISCIPLINE REMOVE IS INHERENT IN THE POWER TO APPOINT
‣ The power of removal may be implied from the power of appointment.

‣ The power of control is NOT the source of the Executive's disciplinary power over the person of his subordinates.
Rather, his disciplinary power flows from his power to appoint
‣ LIMITATIONS —
1. WHEN THE CONSTITUTION PRESCRIBES THE MEANS TO REMOVE AN APPOINTED OFFICIAL

‣ The President cannot remove officials appointed by him where the Constitution prescribes certain methods for
separation of such officers from public service

a. Chairmen and Commissioners of the Constitutional Commissions — can only be removed by impeachment

b. Judges and Justices of lower courts — subject to the disciplinary authority of the Supreme Court

2. THE DISCIPLINARY POWER OF THE PRESIDENT IS SUBJECT TO THE CAUSES PROVIDED FOR BY LAW
‣ This inherent disciplinary power has been made subject to limitation by the legislature through the tatter's power to
provide for a civil service system one of whose main features is security of tenure: "No officer or employee in the
Civil Service shall be suspended or dismissed except for cause as provided by law. (Art. 9(B), Sec. 2[3])
‣ While the President has control over the judgment or discretion of his subordinates, when it comes to disposition
and movement of their “persons”, the President must obey legislative prescriptions on the subject.

‣ SEE — Ang-Angco vs Castillo, G.R. No. L-17169, November 30, 1963


‣ There is some point in the argument that the Power of control of the President may extend to the Power to
investigate, suspend or remove officers and employees who belong to the executive department if they are
presidential appointees or do not belong to the classified service for such can be justified under the principle
that the power to remove is inherent in the power to appoint (Lacson v. Romero), but not with regard to those
officers or employees who belong to the classified service for as to them that inherent power cannot be
exercised. This is in line with the provision of our Constitution which says that "the Congress may by law vest
the appointment of the inferior officers, in the President alone, in the courts, or in heads of department" (Article
VII, Section 10 [3], Constitution). With regard to these officers whose appointments are vested on heads of
departments, Congress has provided by law for a procedure for their removal precisely in view of this
constitutional authority. One such law is the Civil Service Act of 1959.

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‣ We have no doubt that when Congress, by law, vests the appointment of inferior officers in the heads of
departments it may limit and restrict power of removal as it seem best for the public interest. The constitutional
authority in Congress to thus vest the appointment implies authority to limit, restrict, and regulate the removal
by such laws as Congress may enact in relation to the officers so appointed. The head of a department has no
constitutional prerogative of appointment to officers independently of legislation of Congress, and by such
legislation he must be governed, not only in making appointments but in all that is incident thereto.

‣ In resume, we may conclude that the action taken by respondent Executive Secretary, even with the authority
of the President, in taking direct action on the administrative case of petitioner, without submitting the same to
the Commissioner of Civil Service, is contrary to law and should be set aside.

‣ What is the extent of the President's disciplinary authority over presidential appointees who belong to the
career service?
‣ This power is limited. Specifically, Section 36 of P.D. No. 807, as amended, otherwise known as Civil Service
Decree of the Philippines, is emphatic that career service officers and employees who enjoy security of tenure
may be removed only for any of the causes enumerated in said law. In other words, the fact that petitioner is a
presidential appointee does not give the appointing authority the license to remove him at will or at his pleasure
for it is an admitted fact that he is likewise a career service officer who under the law is the recipient of tenurial
protection, thus, may only be removed for cause and in accordance with procedural due process." (Larin vs.
Executive Secretary)
3. THE PRESIDENT MUST OBSERVE DUE PROCESS AND THE PROPERLY PRESCRIBED ADMINISTRATIVE PROCEDURES
‣ NOTE —

‣ Members of the career service of the Civil Service who are appointed by the President may be directly
disciplined by him (Villaluz v. Zaldivar), provided that the same is for cause and in accordance with the
procedure prescribed by law.

‣ Members of the Cabinet and such officers whose continuity in office depends upon the pleasure of the
President may be replaced at any time, but legally speaking, their separation is effected not by removal but by
expiration of their term. (Alajar v. Alba)

POWER OF EXECUTIVE CONTROL; FAITHFUL EXECUTION CLAUSE

Section 17. The President shall have control of all the executive departments, bureaus, and offices. He shall ensure that
the laws be faithfully executed.

ARTICLE 10 — LOCAL GOVERNMENT


Section 4. The President of the Philippines shall exercise general supervision over local governments. XXXX

Section 16. The President shall exercise general supervision over autonomous regions to ensure that laws are faithfully
executed.

POWER OF EXECUTIVE CONTROL


‣ RULE — THE PRESIDENT SHALL HAVE CONTROL OF ALL THE EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENTS, BUREAUS, AND OFFICES
‣ This means that the President is authorized and empowered to —

a. Nullity or modify acts of subordinates

b. Act through agents and department heads, their acts are deemed acts of the President

c. Re-organize the all executive departments, bureaus, and offices

d. Determine matters of policy in the executive department

‣ NOTE — This power of control couched in general terms for it does not set in specific manner its extent and scope.
(Ang-Angco v. Castillo 1963)

‣ Are government-owned or controlled corporations covered under the power of control?


‣ YES. They partake of the nature of government bureaus or offices.

‣ SEE — NAMARCO vs Arca, G.R. No. L-25743, September 30, 1969


‣ The President of the Philippines' authority to review and reverse the decision of the NAMARCO Board of Directors
dismissing Juan T. Arive from his position in the NAMARCO and to order his re-instatement falls within the

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constitutional power of the President over all executive departments, bureaus and offices. Under our governmental
set-up, corporations owned or controlled by the government, such as the NAMARCO, partake of the nature of
government bureaus or offices, which are administratively supervised by the Administrator of the Office of
Economic Coordination, "whose compensation and rank shall be that of a head of an Executive Department" and
who "shall be responsible to the President of the Philippines under whose control his functions ... shall be
exercised.”

‣ BERNAS — The executive’s power of control over GOCCs is a question of law since the legislature may place them
under the control of the executive when their functions partake the nature of government bureaus or offices. GOCCs
may be removed from the Executive’s control when the nature of their functions is changed.

LIMITATIONS ON THE POWER OF CONTROL


1. President must observe the limits imposed by the Constitution and Laws (Faithful Execution Clause)

2. President cannot interfere with decisions of quasi-judicial bodies, even if they are executive agencies

3. President merely has power of general supervision of local government units

ASPECTS OF THE PRESIDENTIAL POWER OF EXECUTIVE CONTROL


1. POWER OVER THE ACTS AND DECISIONS OF ALL OFFICERS IN THE EXECUTIVE BRANCH
‣ The President's power of control applies to the acts or decisions of all officers in the Executive branch. This is true
whether such officers are appointed by the President or by heads of departments, agencies, commissions, or boards.
The power of control means the power to revise or reverse the acts or decisions of a subordinate office involving the
exercise of discretion. (Rufino vs Endriga 2006)
‣ The presidential power of control over the Executive branch of government extends to all executive employees from
the Department Secretary to the lowliest clerk. This constitutional power of the President is self-executing and does
not require any implementing law. Congress cannot limit or curtail the President's power of control over the Executive
branch.

‣ The President sits at the apex of the Executive branch, and exercises "control of all the executive departments,
bureaus, and offices. There can be no instance under the Constitution where an officer of the Executive branch is
outside the control of the President. The Executive branch is unitary since there is only one. (Rufino vs Endriga 2006)

‣ President vested with executive power exercising control over the entire Executive branch .Any office in the Executive
branch that is not under the control of the President is a lost command whose existence is without any legal or
constitutional basis. (Rufino vs Endriga 2006)

‣ NOTE — The Legislature cannot validly enact a law that puts a government office in the Executive branch outside the
control of the President in the guise of insulating that office from politics or making it independent. If the office is part
of the Executive branch, it must remain subject to the control of the President. Otherwise, the Legislature can deprive
the President of his constitutional power of control over "all the executive offices." If the Legislature can do this with
the Executive branch, then the Legislature can also deal a similar blow to the Judicial branch by enacting a law putting
decisions of certain lower courts beyond the review power of the Supreme Court. This will destroy the system of
checks and balances finely structured in the 1987 Constitution among the Executive, Legislative, and Judicial
branches. (Rufino vs Endriga 2006)
2. POWER TO NULLITY OR MODIFY ACTS OF ALL OFFICERS IN THE EXECUTIVE BRANCH
‣ The power of control is the power of an officer to alter or modify or nullify or set aside what a subordinate officer had
done in the performance of his duties and to substitute the judgment of the former for that of the latter. (Mondano v.
Silvosa 1955)
‣ It is such power which has been given to the President over all executive officers, from Cabinet members to the
lowliest clerk. This is an element of the presidential system where the President is "the Executive of the Government
of the Philippines, and no other. The heads of the executive departments occupy political positions and hold office in
an advisory capacity. (Villena v. Secretary of Interior 1939)
‣ The President's power of control means his power to reverse the judgment of an inferior officer. It may also be
exercised in his behalf by Department Heads. Thus the Secretary of Justice may reverse the judgment of a prosecutor
and direct him to withdraw an information already filed. Such action is not directly reviewable by a court. One who
disagrees, however, should appeal to the Office of the President in order to exhaust administrative remedies prior to
bringing it to court. (Orosa v. Roa 2006)
‣ This power, however, "merely applies to the exercise of control over the acts of the subordinate in the performance of
his duties. It only means that the President may set aside the judgment or action taken by a subordinate in the
performance of his duties. (Ang-Angco v. Castillo 1963)
3. POWER TO DELEGATE OR ACT THROUGH AGENTS (DOCTRINE OF QUALIFIED POLITICAL AGENCY)

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‣ The doctrine, recognizing that the Constitution has established a single and not a plural executive, postulates that "all
executive and administrative organizations are adjuncts of the Executive Department, the heads of the various
executive departments are assistants and agents of the Chief Executive, and, except in cases where the Chief
Executive is required by the Constitution or law to act in person or the exigencies of the situation demand that he act
personally, the multifarious executive and administrative functions of the Chief Executive are performed by and
through the executive departments, and the acts of the secretaries of such departments, performed and promulgated
in the regular course of business, are, unless disapproved or reprobated by the Chief Executive presumptively the acts
of the Chief Executive. (Villena v. Secretary of Interior 1939)
‣ Examples —
1. A decision of a department secretary, when not reprobated by the Executive, is the last step in the process of
"exhausting administrative remedies” (Demaisip v. Court of Tax Appeals 1959)
2. The Executive Secretary when acting "by authority of the President," may reverse the decision of another
department secretary. (Lacson-Magallanes v. Pano 1967)
3. The Executive Secretary has the power to modify, alter or reverse a construction of a statute given by the
Secretary of Justice. (Maceda v. Macaraig 1991)
4. The action of the Secretary of the DENR, exercising the President's power to reorganize, is presumed to be the
action of the President. (DENR v. DENR Employees 2003)
5. The acts of the Secretary of Justice in the ordinary course of the performance of his duties are acts of the
President which are controlling over all executive officers. Hence, the NBI Director must obey. (De Leon v. Carpio
1989)
4. POWER TO REORGANIZE EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENTS, BUREAUS, AND OFFICES
‣ The express grant of the power of control to the President justifies an executive action to carry out the reorganization
of an executive office under a broad authority of law. (Anak Mindanao v. Executive Sec. 2007)
‣ Reorganization can involve the reduction of personnel, consolidation of offices, or even abolition of positions by
reason of economy or redundancy of functions. While the power to abolish an office is generally lodged with the
legislature, the authority of the President to reorganize the executive branch, which may include such abolition, is
permissible under present laws. (Malaria Employees v. Executive Secretary 2007)
‣ SEE — Domingo v. Zamora, G.R. No. 142283, February 6, 2003
‣ The Administrative Code of 1987 (EO 292) expressly grants the President continuing authority to reorganize the
Office of the President. The law grants the President this power in recognition of the recurring need of every
President to reorganize his office “to achieve simplicity, economy and efficiency”. The Office of the President is the
nerve center of the Executive Branch. To remain effective and efficient, the Office of the President must be capable
of being shaped and reshaped by the President in the manner he deems fit to carry out his directives and policies.

‣ But the power to reorganize the Office of the President under Sec. 31 (2) and (3) of the Administrative Code should
be distinguished from his power to reorganize the Office of the President Proper. Under Sec. 31 (1) of EO 292, the
President can reorganize the Office of the President Proper by abolishing, consolidating or merging units, or by
transferring functions from one unit to another. In contrast, under Sec. 31 (2) and (3), the President’s power to
reorganize offices outside the Office of the President Proper is limited to merely transferring functions or agencies
from the Office of the President to Departments or Agencies, and vice versa
5. POWER TO DETERMINE MATTERS OF POLICY IN THE EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT
‣ The term "policy" means a settled or definite course or method adopted and followed by a government, body, or
individual. (Ang-Angco v. Castillo 1963)

POWER OF CONTROL VS POWER TO DISCIPLINE OR REMOVE


‣ RULE — While the power of control pertains to the power over “acts or decisions” or officers in the executive
department. Power to discipline or remove pertains to the power over the “person” of the officers themselves.
‣ SEE — Ang-Angco v. Castillo 1963
‣ The power of an officer to alter or modify or nullify or set aside what a subordinate had done in the performance of
his duties and to substitute the judgment of the former for that of the latter." This power, however, "merely applies
to the exercise of control over the acts of the subordinate in the performance of his duties. It only means that the
President may set aside the judgment or action taken by a subordinate in the performance of his duties.

‣ The power of control, therefore, is not the source of the Executive's disciplinary power over the person of his
subordinates. Rather, his disciplinary power flows from his power to appoint The power to remove is inherent in
the power to appoint.Moreover, this inherent disciplinary power has been made subject to limitation by the
legislature through the tatter's power to provide for a civil service system one of whose main features is security of
tenure: "No officer or employee in the Civil Service shall be suspended or dismissed except for cause as provided

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by law." Article IX, B, Section 2(3). Hence, it can be said that while the Executive has control over the "judgment"
or "discretion" of his subordinates, it is the legislature which has control over their “person."

POWER AND OBLIGATION TO ENSURE FAITHFUL EXECUTION OF LAWS


‣ RULE — THE PRESIDENT MUST ENSURE THAT THE LAWS BE FAITHFULLY EXECUTED
‣ Known as the “Faithful Execution Clause”

‣ The duty to faithfully execute the laws of the land is inherent in executive power and is intimately related to the other
executive functions.

‣ This is the essence of executive power which is the power to enforce and administer the laws.

‣ This means that the President can do whatever is needed to ensure that laws and treaties are followed
‣ NOTE — The President’s power to compel faithful execution is not limited to laws buy also includes the rights and
obligations growing out of the Constitution itself, our international relations, and all the protection implied by the
nature of government under the Constitution. (In re Neagle 1890)
‣ SEE — National Electrification Administration v. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. 143481, February 15, 2002
‣ As the administrative head of the government, the President is vested with the power to execute, administer and
carry out laws into practical operation. Executive power, then, is the power of carrying out the laws into practical
operation and enforcing their due observance.
‣ SEE — Saguisag vs Ochoa 2016, G.R. No. 212426, January 12, 2016
‣ This is not merely a power but also an obligation and duty imposed on the President to carry out the constitution,
laws and decisions of the Supreme Court (which have the force of law)

‣ This Court has interpreted the faithful execution clause as an obligation imposed on the President, and not a
separate grant of power.

‣ These obligations are as broad as they sound, for a President cannot function with crippled hands, but must be
capable of securing the rule of law within all territories of the Philippine Islands and be empowered to do so within
constitutional limits. Congress cannot, for instance, limit or take over the President's power to adopt implementing
rules and regulations for a law it has enacted.
‣ This mandate is self-executory by virtue of its being inherently executive in nature. The most important self-
executory constitutional power of the President is the President's constitutional duty and mandate to "ensure that
the laws be faithfully executed." The rule is that the President can execute the law without any delegation of power
from the legislature. The import of this characteristic is that the manner of the President's execution of the law,
even if not expressly granted by the law, is justified by necessity and limited only by law, since the President must
"take necessary and proper steps to carry into execution the law.

‣ The faithful execution clause gives the President the following powers and duties —

1. POWER OF GENERAL SUPERVISION OVER LGUS AND AUTONOMOUS REGIONS


‣ It is the power of a superior officer to "ensure that the laws are faithfully executed" by inferiors.

‣ The power of supervision does not include the power of control; but the power of control necessarily includes the
power of supervision.

‣ Such as — the power of the President over local governments is only one of general supervision.
2. POWER TO PROSECUTE CRIMES
‣ The prosecution of crimes appertains to the executive department of government whose principal power and
responsibility is to see that our laws are faithfully executed. A necessary component of this power to execute our
laws is the right to prosecute their violators. The right to prosecute vests the prosecutor with a wide range of
discretion — the discretion of whether, what and whom to charge, the exercise of which depends on a
smorgasbord of factors which are best appreciated by prosecutors. (Webb vs De Leon 1995)
3. POWER TO ENTER INTO EXECUTIVE AGREEMENTS WITH FOREIGN STATES
‣ SEE — Saguisag vs Ochoa 2016

POWER AS COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF OF THE ARMED FORCES OF THE PHILIPPINES

Section 18. The President shall be the Commander-in-Chief of all armed forces of the Philippines and whenever it
becomes necessary, he may call out such armed forces to prevent or suppress lawless violence, invasion or rebellion. In
case of invasion or rebellion, when the public safety requires it, he may, for a period not exceeding sixty days, suspend

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the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus or place the Philippines or any part thereof under martial law. Within forty-eight
hours from the proclamation of martial law or the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus, the President
shall submit a report in person or in writing to the Congress. The Congress, voting jointly, by a vote of at least a majority
of all its Members in regular or special session, may revoke such proclamation or suspension, which revocation shall not
be set aside by the President. Upon the initiative of the President, the Congress may, in the same manner, extend such
proclamation or suspension for a period to be determined by the Congress, if the invasion or rebellion shall persist and
public safety requires it.

The Congress, if not in session, shall, within twenty-four hours following such proclamation or suspension, convene in
accordance with its rules without need of a call.

The Supreme Court may review, in an appropriate proceeding filed by any citizen, the sufficiency of the factual basis of
the proclamation of martial law or the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus or the extension thereof,
and must promulgate its decision thereon within thirty days from its filing.

A state of martial law does not suspend the operation of the Constitution, nor supplant the functioning of the civil courts
or legislative assemblies, nor authorize the conferment of jurisdiction on military courts and agencies over civilians where
civil courts are able to function, nor automatically suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus.

The suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus shall apply only to persons judicially charged for rebellion or
offenses inherent in, or directly connected with, invasion.

During the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus, any person thus arrested or detained shall be
judicially charged within three days, otherwise he shall be released.

ARTICLE 2 — DECLARATION OF PRINCIPLES AND STATE POLICIES


Section 3. Civilian authority is, at all times, supreme over the military. The Armed Forces of the Philippines is the protector
of the people and the State. Its goal is to secure the sovereignty of the State and the integrity of the national territory.

Section 4. The prime duty of the Government is to serve and protect the people. The Government may call upon the
people to defend the State and, in the fulfillment thereof, all citizens may be required, under conditions provided by law,
to render personal, military or civil service.

Section 5. The maintenance of peace and order, the protection of life, liberty, and property, and promotion of the general
welfare are essential for the enjoyment by all the people of the blessings of democracy.

POWERS OF THE PRESIDENT AS THE COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF OF THE ARMED FORCES OF THE PHILIPPINES
1. HEAD OF ALL THE ARMED FORCES OF THE PHILIPPINES
‣ BERNAS — The weight of authority favours the position that the President is NOT a member of the armed forces but
remains a civilian. The President’s duties as commander-in-chief represent only a part of the organic duties imposed
upon him. All his other functions are clearly civil in nature. He is elected as the highest civilian officer. This is in
harmony with the principle that “civilian authority is, at all times, supreme over the military.”

‣ The President holds supreme military authority and is the ceremonial, legal and administrative head of the armed
forces.

‣ The President has the power to direct military operations and to determine military strategy.

‣ The President has the control and direction of the conduct of war, whether the war be declared or undeclared.

‣ Since the President is commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces she can demand obedience from military officers.
Military officers who disobey or ignore her command can be subjected to court martial proceeding. (Gudani v. Senga
2006
‣ SEE — Saguisag vs Ochoa G.R. No. 212426, January 12, 2016
‣ The President of the Philippines, as the sole repository of executive power, is the guardian of the Philippine
archipelago, including all the islands and waters embraced therein and all other territories over which it has
sovereignty or jurisdiction. To carry out this important duty, the President is equipped with authority over the
Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), which is the protector of the people and the state. The AFP's role is to
secure the sovereignty of the State and the integrity of the national territory.

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‣ In addition, the Executive is constitutionally empowered under Art. 2, Sec. 4 and 5 to maintain peace and order;
protect life, liberty, and property; and promote the general welfare. In recognition of these powers, Congress has
specified that the President must oversee, ensure, and reinforce our defensive capabilities against external and
internal threats and, in the same vein, ensure that the country is adequately prepared for all national and local
emergencies arising from natural and man-made disasters

‣ Because of the duty of the President to faithfully execute the laws, it is his President's prerogative to do whatever
is legal and necessary for Philippine defense interests. It is no coincidence that the constitutional provision on the
faithful execution clause was followed by that on the President's commander-in-chief powers, which are
specifically granted during extraordinary events of lawless violence, invasion, or rebellion. And this duty of
defending the country is unceasing, even in times when there is no state of lawlesss violence, invasion, or
rebellion. At such times, the President has full powers to ensure the faithful execution of the laws. It would
therefore be remiss for the President and repugnant to the faithful-execution clause of the Constitution to do
nothing when the call of the moment requires increasing the military's defensive capabilities, which could include
forging alliances with states that hold a common interest with the Philippines or bringing an international suit
against an offending state. (Saguisag vs Ochoa 2016)

2. CALLING-OUT POWER
‣ The President may call out the armed forces whenever it becomes necessary to prevent or suppress either —

a. Lawless violence (This is to be determined by the President as a matter of policy based on the facts of each case)

b. Invasion

c. Rebellion

‣ NACHURA — Under the calling-out power, the President may summon the armed forces to aid her in suppressing
lawless violence, invasion or rebellion; this involves ordinary police action. But every act that goes beyond the
President’s calling-out power is considered illegal or ultra vires. For this reason, a President must be careful in the
exercise of her powers. She cannot invoke a greater power when she wishes to act under a lesser power.

‣ When the President exercises the option to call on the armed forces does he thereby acquire additional or
emergency powers?
‣ NO. It simply means that he is calling on the Armed Forces to assist the police. But this does not give her
additional powers. (Lacson v. Secretary Perez 2001)
‣ NOTE — a President can claim emergency powers only when these are granted to her by Congress under Art. 6,
Sec. 23.

‣ Is this power subject to judicial review?


‣ YES. The court’s may look into —

a. The factual basis to see compliance with the requirements imposed by the Constitution; and

b. Whether or not the power has been exercised in a manner constituting grave abuse of discretion (arbitrary,
whimsical or capricious manner) amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction

‣ SEE — David vs Arroyo, G.R. No. 171396, May 3, 2006


‣ While the Court considered the President’s "calling-out" power as a discretionary power solely vested in his
wisdom, it stressed that "this does not prevent an examination of whether such power was exercised within
permissible constitutional limits or whether it was exercised in a manner constituting grave abuse of
discretion."This ruling is mainly a result of the Court’s reliance on Section 1, Article VIII of 1987 Constitution
which fortifies the authority of the courts to determine in an appropriate action the validity of the acts of the
political departments. Under the new definition of judicial power, the courts are authorized not only "to settle
actual controversies involving rights which are legally demandable and enforceable," but also "to determine
whether or not there has been a grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction on the
part of any branch or instrumentality of the government." The latter part of the authority represents a
broadening of judicial power to enable the courts of justice to review what was before a forbidden territory, to
wit, the discretion of the political departments of the government. It speaks of judicial prerogative not only in
terms of power but also of duty

‣ SEE — Integrated Bar of the Philippines v. Zamora, G.R. No. 141284, August 15, 2000
‣ When the President calls out the armed forces to suppress lawless violence, rebellion or invasion, he
necessarily exercises a discretionary power solely vested in his wisdom. The Court cannot overrule the
President’s discretion or substitute its own. The only criterion is that “whenever it becomes necessary”, the
President may call out the armed forces. In the exercise of the power, on-the-spot decisions may be necessary
in emergency situations to avert great loss of human lives and mass destruction of property. Indeed, the
decision to call out the armed forces must be done swiftly and decisively if it were to have any effect at all.

‣ SEE — Lacson v. Perez, G.R. No. 147780. May 10, 2001

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‣ The Supreme Court said that the President has discretionary authority to declare a “state of rebellion”. The
Court may only look into the sufficiency of the factual basis for the exercise of the power.
‣ Can the President declare a “state of rebellion” or “state of national emergency” is this valid? What are its
effects?
‣ YES. But it does not give the President additional powers
‣ SEE — Sanlakas vs Reyes, G.R. No. 159085, February 3, 2004
‣ The President’s authority to declare a “state of rebellion” springs in the main from her powers as chief executive
and, at the same time, draws strength from her Commander-in-Chief powers. However, a mere declaration of a
state of rebellion cannot diminish or violate constitutionally protected rights. There is also no basis for the
apprehensions that, because of the declaration, military and police authorities may resort to warrantless
arrests.

‣ As held in Lacson v. Perez, supra., the authorities may only resort to warrantless arrests of persons suspected
of rebellion as provided under Sec. 5, Rule 113 of the Rules of Court. Be that as it may, the Court said that, in
calling out the armed forces, a declaration of a state of rebellion is an “utter superfluity”. At most, it only gives
notice to the nation that such a state exists and that the armed forces may be called to prevent or suppress it.
“The Court finds that such a declaration is devoid of any legal significance. For all legal intents, the declaration
is deemed not written.”

3. POWER TO SUSPEND THE PRIVILEGE OF THE WRIT OF HABEAS CORPUS


‣ The President may, for a period not exceeding 60 days, suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus if the
following requisites are present —

a. Invasion or Rebellion
‣ The existence of a rebellion need not be widespread or attain the magnitude of a civil war. This is apparent
from the very provision of the Revised Penal Code defining the crime of rebellion, which may be limited in its
scope to "any part" of the Philippines. (Lansang vs Garcia 1971)

b. When the public safety requires it


‣ This is to be determined by the President as a matter of policy based on the facts of each case

‣ What is the writ of habeas corpus?


‣ It is a writ directed to the person detaining another, commanding him to produce the body of the prisoner at a
designated time and place, with the day and cause of his caption and detention, to do, submit to, and receive
whatever the court or judge awarding the writ shall consider in that behalf.

‣ What is the “privilege” of the writ of habeas corpus?


‣ It is the right to have an immediate determination of the legality of the deprivation of physical liberty.

‣ NOTE — The writ is never suspended. It always issues as a matter of course. What is suspended is the privilege of
the writ. When such suspension occurs, once the officer making the return shows to the court that the person
detained is being detained for an offense covered by the suspension, the court may not enquire any further.

‣ Does the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus apply to all persons?
‣ NO. The suspension of the privilege of the writ only applies to persons judicially charged for rebellion or offenses
inherent in or directly connected with invasion.

‣ What is the duty of the State after arrests and detention on the basis of the suspension of the privilege?
‣ During the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus, any person thus arrested or detained shall be
judicially charged within 3 days, otherwise he shall be released.

‣ Is this power subject to judicial review?


‣ YES. The court’s may look into —

a. The factual basis to see compliance with the requirements imposed by the Constitution; and

b. Whether or not the power has been exercised in a manner constituting grave abuse of discretion (arbitrary,
whimsical or capricious manner) amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction

‣ SEE — Lansang vs Garcia, G.R. No. L-33964, December 11, 1971


‣ Article VII of the Constitution vests in the Executive the power to suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas
corpus under specified conditions. Pursuant to the principle of separation of powers underlying our system of
government, the Executive is supreme within his own sphere. However, the separation of powers, under the
Constitution, is not absolute. What is more, it goes hand in hand with the system of checks and balances,
under which the Executive is supreme, as regards the suspension of the privilege, but only if and when he acts

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within the sphere allotted to him by the Basic Law, and the authority to determine whether or not he has so
acted is vested in the Judicial Department, which, in this respect, is, in turn, constitutionally supreme.

‣ In the exercise of such authority, the function of the Court is merely to check — not to supplant— the
Executive, or to ascertain merely whether he had gone beyond the constitutional limits of his jurisdiction, not to
exercise the power vested in him or to determine the wisdom of his act. To be sure, the power of the Court to
determine the validity of the contested proclamation is far from being identical to, or even comparable with, its
power over ordinary civil or criminal cases elevated thereto by ordinary appeal from inferior courts, in which
cases the appellate court has all of the powers of the court of origin. Under the principle of separation of
powers and the system of checks and balances, the judicial authority to review decisions of administrative
bodies or agencies is much more limited, as regards findings of fact made in said decisions. Under the English
law, the reviewing court determines only whether there is some evidentiary basis for the contested
administrative findings; no quantitative examination of the supporting evidence is undertaken. The
administrative findings can be interfered with only if there is no evidence whatsoever in support thereof,
and said finding is, accordingly, arbitrary, capricious and obviously unauthorized. Other cases, in both
jurisdictions, have applied the "substantial evidence" rule, which has been construed to mean "more than a
mere scintilla" or "relevant evidence as a reasonable mind might accept as adequate to support a conclusion,"
even if other minds equally reasonable might conceivably opine otherwise.

4. POWER TO DECLARE MARTIAL LAW


‣ The President may, for a period not exceeding 60 days, place the Philippines or any part thereof under martial law if
the following requisites are present —

a. Invasion or rebellion, and

b. When the public safety requires it

‣ A state of martial law does NOT —


a. Suspend the operation of the Constitution

b. Supplant the functioning of the civil courts or legislative assemblies

c. Authorize the conferment of jurisdiction on military courts and agencies over civilians where civil courts are able to
function

d. Automatically suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus


‣ NOTE — In view of these restrictions, martial law is now a toothless power.
‣ What is martial law?
‣ Martial law is essentially police power. This is borne out by the constitutional text which sets down "public safety"
as the object of the exercise of martial law. Public safety is the concern of police power. What is peculiar, however,
about martial law as police power is that, whereas police power is normally a function of the legislature executed
by the civilian executive arm, under martial law, police power is exercised by the executive with the aid of the
military and in place of certain governmental agencies which for the time being are unable to cope with existing
conditions in a locality which remains subject to the sovereignty.

‣ It authorizes the military to act vigorously for the maintenance of an orderly civil government.

‣ The exercise of the power which resides in the executive branch of the government to preserve order and insure
the public safety in times of emergency, when other branches of the government are unable to function, or their
functioning would itself threaten the public safety.

‣ It is the law of necessity to be prescribed and administered by the executive power. Its object, the preservation of
the public safety and good order, defines the scope, which will vary with the circumstances and necessities of the
case. The exercise of the power may not extend beyond what is required by the exigency which calls it forth.

‣ What are the effects of martial law?


‣ It depends on the facts and circumstances of each case — with public necessity and safety as the primary
consideration.

‣ BERNAS — What emerges from the observations on martial law as police power as well as from the text of the
Constitution is that martial law is a flexible concept. Necessity creates the conditions for martial law and at the
same time limits the scope of martial law. Certainly, the necessities created by a state of invasion would be
different from those created by rebellion. Necessarily, therefore, the degree and kind of vigorous executive action
needed to meet the varying kinds and degrees of emergency could not be identical under all conditions.

‣ NOTE — Since the effectivity of the 1987 Constitution, the power to declare martial law and suspend the privilege has
been used only once. President Arroyo declared martial law in Maguindanao on the occasion of the Ampatuan
massacre but she lifted it within weeks. What Presidents have done instead has been merely to make use of the power
to call on the Armed Forces to help the police maintain order. But this does not give them additional powers.

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5. THE POWER TO ORGANIZE COURTS MARTIAL FOR THE DISCIPLINE OF THE MEMBERS OF THE ARMED FORCES, CREATE MILITARY
COMMISSIONS FOR THE PUNISHMENT OF WAR CRIMINALS

‣ SEE — Ruffy v. Chief of Staff, G.R. No. L-533, August 20, 1946
‣ Courts martial are agencies of executive character, and one of the authorities "for the ordering of courts martial
has been held to be attached to the constitutional functions of the President as Commander in Chief,
independently of legislation. The Supreme Court of the United States referring to the provisions of the Constitution
authorizing Congress to provide for the government of the army, excepting military offenses from the civil
jurisdiction, and making the President Commander in Chief, observes as follows: "These provisions show that
Congress has the power to provide for the trial and punishment of military and naval offenses in the manner then
and now practiced by civilized nations, and that the power to do so is given without any connection between it
and the 3d Article of the United States; indeed that the two powers are entirely independent of each other."

‣ Not belonging to the judicial branch of the government, it follows that courts-martial must pertain to the executive
department; and they are in fact simply instrumentalities of the executive power, provided by Congress for the
President as Commander in Chief, to aid him in properly commanding the army and navy and enforcing discipline
therein, and utilized under his orders or those of his authorized military representatives.
‣ SEE — Navales v. General Abaya, G.R. No. 162318. October 25, 2004
‣ In enacting R.A. 7055, the lawmakers merely intended to return to the civilian courts jurisdiction over those
offenses that have been traditionally within their jurisdiction, but did not divest the military courts jurisdiction over
cases mandated by the Articles of War. Thus, the RTC cannot divest the General Court Martial of jurisdiction over
those charged with violations of Art. 63

‣ SEE — Gudani vs Senga, G.R. No. 170165, August 15, 2006


‣ On the issue of whether the court martial could still assume jurisdiction over General Gudani who had been
compulsorily retired from the service, the Court quoted from Abadilla v. Ramos, where it was held that an officer
whose name was dropped from the roll of officers cannot be considered to be outside the jurisdiction of military
authorities when military justice proceedings were initiated against him before the termination of his service. Once
jurisdiction has been acquired over the officer, it continues until his case is terminated.

LIMITATIONS ON THE POWER TO SUSPEND OF THE PRIVILEGE OF HABEAS CORPUS AND ON MARTIAL LAW
‣ These are the “limitations” prescribed by the Constitution on the declaration of martial law or suspension of the privilege of
the writ of habeas corpus. It serves as a check on this broad power of the President
1. GROUNDS — INVASION OR REBELLION, WHEN PUBLIC SAFETY REQUIRES IT
2. TIME LIMIT — 60 DAYS FROM DECLARATION
3. LEGISLATIVE REVIEW — REVIEW AND POSSIBLE REVOCATION BY CONGRESS
a. Within 48 hours from the proclamation of martial law or the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus,
the President shall submit a report in person or in writing to the Congress.

b. The Congress, if not in session, shall, within 24 hours following such proclamation or suspension, convene in
accordance with its rules without need of a call.

c. The Congress, voting jointly, by a vote of at least a majority of all its Members in regular or special session, may
revoke such proclamation or suspension, which revocation shall not be set aside by the President.

‣ NOTE — The Senate and the House of Representatives vote "jointly." This is a departure from the general rule that
the two Houses vote separately when deciding an issue. The purpose of the departure from the general rule is to
facilitate the override of the suspension or the imposition.

d. Upon the initiative of the President, the Congress may, in the same manner, extend such proclamation or suspension
for a period to be determined by the Congress, if the invasion or rebellion shall persist and public safety requires it.

4. JUDICIAL REVIEW — REVIEW AND POSSIBLE NULLIFICATION BY THE SUPREME COURT


‣ The Supreme Court may review, in an appropriate proceeding filed by any citizen, the sufficiency of the factual basis
of the proclamation of martial law or the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus or the extension
thereof, and must promulgate its decision thereon within 30 days from its filing.

‣ NOTE — the Supreme Court cannot act motu proprio. There must be a petition filed by any citizen. All Filipino citizens
are given legal standing to file the petition.

POWER OF EXECUTIVE CLEMENCY

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Section 19. Except in cases of impeachment, or as otherwise provided in this Constitution, the President may grant
reprieves, commutations, and pardons, and remit fines and forfeitures, after conviction by final judgment.

He shall also have the power to grant amnesty with the concurrence of a majority of all the Members of the Congress.

ARTICLE 9C — THE COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS
Section 5. No pardon, amnesty, parole, or suspension of sentence for violation of election laws, rules, and regulations
shall be granted by the President without the favorable recommendation of the Commission.

REVISED PENAL CODE
Article 36. Pardon; its effect. - A pardon shall not work the restoration of the right to hold public office, or the right of
suffrage, unless such rights be expressly restored by the terms of the pardon. A pardon shall in no case exempt the
culprit from the payment of the civil indemnity imposed upon him by the sentence.

Article 89. How criminal liability is totally extinguished. - Criminal liability is totally extinguished:
XXXXXX
3. By amnesty, which completely extinguishes the penalty and all its effects
4. By absolute pardon;
XXXXXX

Article 94. Partial Extinction of criminal liability. - Criminal liability is extinguished partially:
1. By conditional pardon
2. By commutation of the sentence; and
XXXXXX

Article 95. Obligation incurred by person granted conditional pardon. - Any person who has been granted conditional
pardon shall incur the obligation of complying strictly with the conditions imposed therein otherwise, his non-compliance
with any of the conditions specified shall result in the revocation of the pardon and the provisions of Article 159 shall be
applied to him.

Article 96. Effect of commutation of sentence. - The commutation of the original sentence for another of a different
length and nature shall have the legal effect of substituting the latter in the place of the former.

Article 113. Obligation to satisfy civil liability. - Except in case of extinction of his civil liability as provided in the next
preceding article the offender shall continue to be obliged to satisfy the civil liability resulting from the crime committed
by him, notwithstanding the fact that he has served his sentence consisting of deprivation of liberty or other rights, or has
not been required to serve the same by reason of amnesty, pardon, commutation of sentence or any other reason.

Article 159. Other cases of evasion of service of sentence. - The penalty of prision correccional in its minimum period
shall be imposed upon the convict who, having been granted conditional pardon by the Chief Executive, shall violate any
of the conditions of such pardon. However, if the penalty remitted by the granting of such pardon be higher than six
years, the convict shall then suffer the unexpired portion of his original sentence.

POWER OF EXECUTIVE CLEMENCY


‣ RULE — THE PRESIDENT MAY GRANT —
1. Reprieves, commutations, and pardons, and remit fines and forfeitures
‣ This is the sole prerogative of the President and may not be limited by law

‣ It may only be granted to convicts by final judgment

2. Amnesty
‣ This requires the concurrence of a majority of all the Members of the Congress.

‣ It may be granted even if there is no conviction by final judgment

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PARDON AMNESTY

Granted solely by the President Granted by the President but requires the concurrence of
a majority of all the Members of the Congress

Private act which must be pleaded and proved by the Public act of which the courts should take judicial notice
person pardoned

Granted only to those convicted by final judgment for all Granted to classes of persons or communities who may
kinds of offenses be guilty of political offense (but has been recognized in
tax cases), generally before or after the institution of the
criminal prosecution and sometimes after conviction

Looks forward and relieves the offender from the Looks backward and abolishes and puts into oblivion the
consequences of an offense of which he has been offense itself, it so overlooks and obliterates the offense
convicted, that is, it abolishes or forgives the punishment, with which is charged that the person released by
and for that reason it does not work restoration of the amnesty stands before the law precisely as though he
rights to hold public office, or the right of suffrage, unless had committed no offense.
such rights be expressly restored by the terms of the
pardon," and it "in no case exempts the culprit from the
payment of the civil indemnity imposed upon him by the
sentence"

POWER TO PARDON CONVICTS


‣ RULE — AFTER CONVICTION BY FINAL JUDGMENT, THE PRESIDENT MAY GRANT —
1. Reprieves — postpone the execution of an offense to a day certain (such as the death penalty).
2. Commutations — a remission of a part of the punishment or a substitution of a less penalty for the one originally
imposed. The commutation of the original sentence for another of a different length and nature shall have the legal
effect of substituting the latter in the place of the former.
3. Pardons — an act of grace, proceeding from the power entrusted with the execution of the laws, which exempts the
individual on whom it is bestowed from the punishment the law inflicts for a crime he has committed.
4. Remit fines and forfeitures — prevents the collection of fines or the confiscation of forfeited property. But it cannot
have the effect of returning property which has been vested in third parties or money in the public treasury.
‣ RATIONALE — the power of executive clemency is tacit admission that human institutions are imperfect and that there
are infirmities in the administration of justice. The power therefore exists as an instrument for correcting these infirmities
and for mitigating whatever harshness might be generated by a too strict application of the law.

‣ What are the limitations on the pardoning power of the President?


1. It cannot be granted in the following cases —

a. In cases of impeachment (The power to impeach those impeachable officials is vested in Congress)

b. As otherwise provided in the Constitution

‣ SEE — Art. 9C — “Section 5. No pardon, amnesty, parole, or suspension of sentence for violation of election
laws, rules, and regulations shall be granted by the President without the favorable recommendation of the
Commission.” This operates as a constitutional limitation on the power of executive clemency

c. In cases of legislative contempt (as it would violate separation of powers), or civil contempt (as the State is
without interest in the same)

2. A pardon can be extended only to one whose conviction is final, pardon has no effect until the person withdraws his
appeal and thereby allows his conviction to be final. (People v. Salle 1995)
3. It cannot absolve the convict of civil liability (People v. Nacional 1995)

4. It cannot restore public offices forfeited (Monsanto v. Factoran)

‣ Does a pardon also restore the convict’s civil and political rights (which are wiped by the accessory penalties)
‣ Generally, a pardon shall not work the restoration of the right to hold public office, or the right of suffrage

‣ EXCEPT— when such rights be expressly restored by the terms of the pardon. (Art. 36, RPC)

‣ Does a pardon extinguish the civil liability arising because of the crime?
‣ NO. A pardon shall in no case exempt the culprit from the payment of the civil indemnity imposed upon him by the
sentence. (Art. 36, 133, RPC)

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‣ Does the pardon wipe away the fact of the commission of the crime? (in other words, does it amount to an
acquittal?)
‣ NO. Pardon implies guilt. It does not erase the fact of the commission of the crime and the conviction thereof. It does
not wash out the moral stain. It involves forgiveness and not forgetfulness.

‣ SEE — Monsanto vs Factoran, G.R. No. 78239 February 9, 1989


‣ While a pardon has generally been regarded as blotting out the existence of guilt so that in the eye of the law the
offender is as innocent as though he never committed the offense, it does not operate for all purposes. The very
essence of a pardon is forgiveness or remission of guilt. Pardon implies guilt. It does not erase the fact of the
commission of the crime and the conviction thereof. It does not wash out the moral stain. It involves forgiveness
and not forgetfulness

‣ The better considered cases regard full pardon (at least one not based on the offender's innocence) as relieving
the party from all the punitive consequences of his criminal act, including the disqualifications or disabilities based
on the finding of guilt. But it relieves him from nothing more. "To say, however, that the offender is a "new man",
and "as innocent as if he had never committed the offense;" is to ignore the difference between the crime and the
criminal. A person adjudged guilty of an offense is a convicted criminal, though pardoned; he may be deserving of
punishment, though left unpunished; and the law may regard him as more dangerous to society than one never
found guilty of crime, though it places no restraints upon him following his conviction.”
‣ A pardon looks to the future. It is not retrospective. It makes no amends for the past. It affords no relief for what
has been suffered by the offender. It does not impose upon the government any obligation to make reparation for
what has been suffered. "Since the offense has been established by judicial proceedings, that which has been
done or suffered while they were in force is presumed to have been rightfully done and justly suffered, and no
satisfaction for it can be required.

‣ May a pardon be with imposed conditions?


‣ YES. The President has the prerogative to impose conditions on the pardon, the violation of which results in the
revocation of the pardon.

‣ Any person who has been granted conditional pardon shall incur the obligation of complying strictly with the
conditions imposed therein otherwise, his non-compliance with any of the conditions specified shall result in the
revocation of the pardon. (Art. 95, RPC)
‣ What is the consequence if the pardoned convict violates the conditions of his pardon?
‣ The pardon is revoked and a new sentence is imposed on him. It is considered as “other cases of evasion of service
of sentence” under Art. 159 of the RPC.

‣ The pardoned convict who violates any conditions of the pardon shall serve —

1. The penalty of prision correccional in its minimum period — if the penalty remitted by the granting of such pardon
is 6 years or less

2. The unexpired portion of his original sentence — if the penalty remitted by the granting of such pardon is more
than 6 years (Art. 159, RPC)

‣ Where conditional pardon has been granted, who determines whether the condition has been violated?
‣ The President, and the President alone, NOT the courts. The convict's acceptance of the conditional pardon carries
with it acceptance of the President's authority. If a condition of the pardon provides that the accused must not commit
a violation of any penal law, it is the President who has the sole discretion to determine whether there is such
violation. There is no need for judicial determination or conviction.

‣ SEE — Torres v. Gonzales, G.R. No. 76872, July 23, 1987


‣ The grant of pardon and the determination of the terms and conditions of a conditional pardon are purely
executive acts which are not subject to judicial scrutiny.

‣ The determination of the occurrence of a breach of a condition of a pardon, and the proper consequences of such
breach, may be either a purely executive act, not subject to judicial scrutiny under Section 64 (i) of the Revised
Administrative Code; or it may be a judicial act consisting of trial for and conviction of violation of a conditional
pardon under Article 159 of the Revised Penal Code.

‣ In proceeding against a convict who has been conditionally pardoned and who is alleged to have breached the
conditions of his pardon, the Executive Department has two options: (i) to proceed against him under Section 64 (i)
of the Revised Administrative Code; or (ii) to proceed against him under Article 159 of the Revised Penal Code
which imposes the penalty of prision correccional, minimum period, upon a convict who "having been granted
conditional pardon by the Chief Executive, shall violate any of the conditions of such pardon." Here, the President
has chosen to proceed against the petitioner under Section 64 (i) of the Revised Administrative Code. That choice
is an exercise of the President's executive prerogative and is not subject to judicial scrutiny.

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‣ Because due process is not semper et unique judicial process, and because the conditionally pardoned convict
had already been accorded judicial due process in his trial and conviction for the offense for which he was
conditionally pardoned, Sec. 64 (i) of the Revised Administrative Code is not afflicted with a constitutional vice.

‣ Should a pardon be accepted by the convict?


‣ IT DEPENDS —

1. Absolute Pardon — complete even without acceptance

2. Conditional Pardon — has no force until accepted by the condemned. The condition may be less acceptable to
him than the original punishment, and may in fact be more onerous. (Cabantag v. Wolfe 1906)
‣ Is a pardoned former public officer entitled to reinstatement to her former position even without a new
appointment
‣ NO. While a pardon removes all penalties and legal disabilities, it does not restore legal office already forfeited. Since,
however, her disqualification has been removed, it qualifies her to apply for a new appointment. (Monsanto v. Factoran
1989)
‣ May the president extend executive clemency for administrative penalties?
‣ YES. The Constitution makes no distinction with regard to the extent of the pardoning power except with respect to
impeachment.

‣ SEE — Llmas vs Orbos, G.R. No. 99031 October 15, 1991


‣ We do not clearly see any valid and convincing reason why the President cannot grant executive clemency in
administrative cases.

‣ If the law does not distinguish, so we must no distinguish. The Constitution does not distinguish between which
cases executive clemency may be exercised by the President, with the sole exclusion of impeachment cases. By
the same token, if executive clemency may be exercised only in criminal cases, it would indeed be unnecessary to
provide for the exclusion of impeachment cases from the coverage of Article VII, Section 19 of the Constitution.
Following petitioner's proposed interpretation, cases of impeachment are automatically excluded inasmuch as the
same do not necessarily involve criminal offenses.

‣ It is our considered view that if the President can grant reprieves, commutations and pardons, and remit fines and
forfeitures in criminal cases, with much more reason can she grant executive clemency in administrative cases,
which are clearly less serious than criminal offenses.

‣ We wish to stress however that when we say the President can grant executive clemency in administrative cases,
we refer only to all administrative cases in the Executive branch, not in the Judicial or Legislative branches of the
government.

‣ Is the grant of an executive pardon subject to judicial review?


‣ NO. (but remember the power of Courts to ascertain GADALEJ)

‣ Pardon is discretionary. It may not be controlled by the legislature or reversed by the courts, unless there is a
constitutional violation. Thus, it was a legal malapropism for the trial court to interject par. 2, Art. 135, Revised Penal
Code, recommending the grant of pardon after the convict shall have served a jail term of 5 years, considering that
this was a prosecution under a special law, and that the matter of a pardon is within the President’s exclusive
prerogative. (People v. de Gracia)

POWER TO GRANT AMNESTY


‣ RULE — THE PRESIDENT HAS THE POWER TO GRANT AMNESTY WITH THE CONCURRENCE OF A MAJORITY OF ALL THE
MEMBERS OF THE CONGRESS
‣ What is “amnesty”?
‣ It is an act of grace, concurred in by the legislature, usually extended to groups of persons who committed political
offenses, which puts into oblivion the offense itself.

‣ Amnesty commonly denotes the 'general pardon to rebels for their treason and other high political offenses or the
forgiveness which one sovereign grants to the subjects of another, who have offended by some breach of the law
of nations. (Villa v. Allen 1903)
‣ Amnesty is a form of absolutory cause akin to a justifying circumstance. One a person has been given the benefit
of an amnesty, there is no more crime, thus, no criminal. It looks backward and abolishes and puts into oblivion the
offense itself, it so overlooks and obliterates the offense with which is charged that the person released by
amnesty stands before the law precisely as though he had committed no offense.

‣ What is a “tax amnesty?

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‣ It is a general pardon or intentional overlooking of its authority to impose penalties on persons otherwise guilty of
evasion or violation of revenue or tax law, and as such partakes of an absolute forgiveness or waiver by the
Government of its right to collect what otherwise would be due it. (Republic vs IAC 1991).

POWER TO ENTER INTO FOREIGN RELATIONS

Section 20. The President may contract or guarantee foreign loans on behalf of the Republic of the Philippines with the
prior concurrence of the Monetary Board, and subject to such limitations as may be provided by law. The Monetary Board
shall, within thirty days from the end of every quarter of the calendar year, submit to the Congress a complete report of its
decision on applications for loans to be contracted or guaranteed by the Government or government-owned and
controlled corporations which would have the effect of increasing the foreign debt, and containing other matters as may
be provided by law.

Section 21. No treaty or international agreement shall be valid and effective unless concurred in by at least two-thirds of
all the Members of the Senate.

ARTICLE 18- TRANSITORY PROVISIONS


Section 4. All existing treaties or international agreements which have not been ratified shall not be renewed or extended
without the concurrence of at least two-thirds of all the Members of the Senate.

Section 25. After the expiration in 1991 of the Agreement between the Republic of the Philippines and the United States
of America concerning military bases, foreign military bases, troops, or facilities shall not be allowed in the Philippines
except under a treaty duly concurred in by the Senate and, when the Congress so requires, ratified by a majority of
thevotes cast by the people in a national referendum held for that purpose, and recognized as a treaty by the other
contracting State.

THE PRESIDENT AS THE SOLE ORGAN IN THE CONDUCT OF FOREIGN RELATIONS


‣ RULE — PRESIDENT IS THE SOLE ORGAN OF THE NATION IN ITS EXTERNAL RELATIONS, AND ITS SOLE REPRESENTATIVE WITH
FOREIGN RELATIONS

‣ SEE — Vinuya vs Romulo, G.R. No. 162230, April 28, 2010


‣ Not all cases implicating foreign relations present political questions, and courts certainly possess the authority to
construe or invalidate treaties and executive agreements. However, the question whether the Philippine government
should espouse claims of its nationals against a foreign government is a foreign relations matter, the authority for
which is demonstrably committed by our Constitution not to the courts but to the political branches.

‣ In this case, the Executive Department has already decided that it is to the best interest of the country to waive all
claims of its nationals for reparations against Japan in the Treaty of Peace of 1951. The wisdom of such decision is
not for the courts to question. Neither could petitioners herein assail the said determination by the Executive
Department via the instant petition for certiorari.

‣ The President is the sole organ of the nation in its external relations, and its sole representative with foreign relations.
It is quite apparent that if, in the maintenance of our international relations, embarrassment -- perhaps serious
embarrassment — is to be avoided and success for our aims achieved, congressional legislation which is to be made
effective through negotiation and inquiry within the international field must often accord to the President a degree of
discretion and freedom from statutory restriction which would not be admissible where domestic affairs alone
involved.

‣ Moreover, he, not Congress, has the better opportunity of knowing the conditions which prevail in foreign countries,
and especially is this true in time of war. He has his confidential sources of information. He has his agents in the form
of diplomatic, consular and other officials

‣ The conduct of foreign relations is full of complexities and consequences, sometimes with life and death significance
to the nation especially in times of war. It can only be entrusted to that department of government which can act on
the basis of the best available information and can decide with decisiveness.

‣ It is also the President who possesses the most comprehensive and the most confidential information about foreign
countries for our diplomatic and consular officials regularly brief him on meaningful events all over the world. He has
also unlimited access to ultra-sensitive military intelligence data. In fine, the presidential role in foreign affairs is
dominant and the President is traditionally accorded a wider degree of discretion in the conduct of foreign affairs.

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‣ The regularity, nay, validity of his actions are adjudged under less stringent standards, lest their judicial repudiation
lead to breach of an international obligation, rupture of state relations, forfeiture of confidence, national
embarrassment and a plethora of other problems with equally undesirable consequences.

‣ The Executive Department has determined that taking up petitioners’ cause would be inimical to our country’s foreign
policy interests, and could disrupt our relations with Japan, thereby creating serious implications for stability in this
region. For us to overturn the Executive Department’s determination would mean an assessment of the foreign policy
judgments by a coordinate political branch to which authority to make that judgment has been constitutionally
committed.

‣ SEE — Saguisag vs Ochoa, G.R. No. 212426, January 12, 2016


‣ The President also carries the mandate of being the sole organ in the conduct of foreign relations. Since every state
has the capacity to interact with and engage in relations with other sovereign states, it is but logical that every state
must vest in an agent the authority to represent its interests to those other sovereign states.

‣ The conduct of foreign relations is full of complexities and consequences, sometimes with life and death significance
to the nation especially in times of war. It can only be entrusted to that department of government which can act on
the basis of the best available information and can decide with decisiveness.

‣ It is also the President who possesses the most comprehensive and the most confidential information about foreign
countries for our diplomatic and consular officials regularly brief him on meaningful events all over the world. He has
also unlimited access to ultra-sensitive military intelligence data.

‣ In fine, the presidential role in foreign affairs is dominant and the President is traditionally accorded a wider degree of
discretion in the conduct of foreign affairs. The regularity, nay, validity of his actions are adjudged under less stringent
standards, lest their judicial repudiation lead to breach of an international obligation, rupture of state relations,
forfeiture of confidence, national embarrassment and a plethora of other problems with equally undesirable
consequences

‣ The role of the President in foreign affairs is qualified by the Constitution in that the Chief Executive must give
paramount importance to the sovereignty of the nation, the integrity of its territory, its interest, and the right of the
sovereign Filipino people to self-determination.

‣ In specific provisions, the President's power is also limited, or at least shared, as in —

‣ Section 2 of Article II on the conduct of war;

‣ Sections 20 and 21 of Article VII on foreign loans, treaties, and international agreements

‣ Sections 4(2) and 5(2)(a) of Article VIII on the judicial review of executive acts

‣ Sections 4 and 25 of Article XVIII on treaties and international agreements entered into prior to the Constitution
and on the presence of foreign military troops, bases, or facilities.

ASPECTS OF FOREIGN RELATIONS POWER OF THE PRESIDENT


1. Power to contract and guarantee foreign loans on behalf of the Republic

2. Power to negotiate treaties and international agreements

3. Power to deport aliens

4. Power to appoint ambassadors and other public ministers, and consuls

5. Power to receive ambassadors and other public ministers accredited to the Philippines

POWER TO CONTRACT OF GUARANTEE FOREIGN LOANS


‣ RULE — THE PRESIDENT MAY CONTRACT OR GUARANTEE FOREIGN LOANS ON BEHALF OF THE PHILIPPINES
‣ The language of the Constitution is simple and clear as it is broad. It allows the President to contract and guarantee
foreign loans. It makes no prohibition on the issuance of certain kinds of loans or distinctions as to which kinds of
debt instruments are more onerous than others. This Court may not ascribe to the Constitution meanings and
restrictions that would unduly burden the powers of the President. The plain, clear and unambiguous language of the
Constitution should be construed in a sense that will allow the full exercise of the power provided therein. It would be
the worst kind of judicial legislation if the courts were to misconstrue and change the meaning of the organic act.
(Spouses Constantino v. Cuisia 2005)
‣ LIMITATIONS —
1. THERE MUST BE PRIOR CONCURRENCE OF THE MONETARY BOARD
‣ This is because the Monetary Board has expertise and consistency to perform the mandate which may be absent
among the Members of Congress.

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2. IT IS SUBJECT TO SUCH LIMITATIONS AS MAY BE PROVIDED BY LAW
‣ In order to allow Congress to act on whatever legislation may be needed to protect public interest, the Monetary
Board is required to submit toCongress a complete report of its decision on applications for loans to be contracted
or guaranteed by the Government or government-owned and controlled corporations which would have the effect
of increasing the foreign debt, and containing other matters as may be provided by law.

‣ This is to be done by the Monetary Board within 30 days from the end of every quarter of the calendar year

POWER TO NEGOTIATE TREATIES AND INTERNATIONAL AGREEMENTS


‣ RULE — THE PRESIDENT MAY NEGOTIATE AND ENTER INTO AGREEMENTS WITH OTHER STATES
‣ In the negotiation phase of treaty-making, the executive may completely excludes Congress.

‣ The President may enter into the following agreements with foreign states —

1. TREATIES AND INTERNATIONAL AGREEMENTS — SENATE CONCURRENCE IS REQUIRED


‣ These are agreements that are permanent and original. Such agreements should be embodied in a treaty and
need Senate concurrence.

‣ The fruit of the executive's negotiation does not become binding and treaty without the concurrence of at least
2/3 of all the Members of the Senate

‣ The President’s power to act as its representative in the international sphere inheres in the person of the
President. This power, however, does not crystallize into absolute discretion to craft whatever instrument the
Chief Executive so desires. The Senate has a role in ensuring that treaties or international agreements the
President enters into, obtain the approval of two-thirds of its members. (Saguisag vs Ochoa 2016)

‣ A treaty without Senate concurrence is invalid and ineffective.

‣ NOTE — Usually, treaties are signed by cabinet members (such as the DFA secretary), it is then “ratified” by the
President and subsequently his ratification is submitted to Senate for “concurrence”.

‣ May the President be compelled to submit a treaty to the Senate for concurrence?
‣ NO. The decision to enter into a treaty is a prerogative solely of the President. Unless the President submits
a treaty to the Senate, there is nothing for them to concur in. (Pimentel v. Ermita 2005)
‣ It cannot be compelled by mandamus

2. EXECUTIVE AGREEMENTS — SENATE CONCURRENCE IS NOT REQUIRED


‣ These are international agreements which are merely temporary or implementations of treaties or laws, thus,
concurrence of 2/3 members of the Senate is NOT required for its validity and effectivity.

‣ SEE — Usaffe Veterans Association, Inc. v. Treasurer G.R. No. L-10500, June 30, 1959
‣ A treaty is not the only form that an international agreement may assume. For the grant of the treaty-making
power to the Executive and the Senate does not exhaust the power of the government over international
relations. Consequently, executive agreements may be entered with other states and are effective even
without the concurrence of the Senate.

‣ While treaties are required to be ratified by the Senate under the Constitution, less formal types of
international agreements may be entered into by the Chief Executive and become binding without the
concurrence of the legislative body.

‣ There are now various forms of such pacts or agreements entered into by and between sovereign states
which do not necessarily come under the strict sense of a treaty and which do not require ratification or
consent of the legislative body of the State, but nevertheless, are considered valid international
agreements.
‣ From the point of view of the international law, there is no difference between treaties and executive
agreements in their binding effect upon states concerned as long as the negotiating functionaries have
remained within their powers.

‣ Executive Agreements fall into two classes —

a. Presidential Agreements — agreements made purely as executive acts affecting external relations
and independent of or without legislative authorization

b. Congressional-Executive Agreements — agreements entered into in pursuance to acts of Congress

‣ In this case, the Romulo-Snyder Agreement may fall under any of these two classes, for precisely on
September 18, 1946, Congress of the Philippines specifically authorized the President of the Philippines to
obtain such loans or incur such indebtedness with the Government of the United States, its agencies or
instrumentalities.

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‣ Even granting, arguendo, that there was no legislative authorization, it is hereby maintained that the
Romulo- Snyder Agreement was legally and validly entered into to conform to the second category, namely,
"agreements entered into purely as executive acts without legislative authorization." This second category
usually includes money agreements relating to the settlement of pecuniary claims of citizens. It may be said
that this method of settling such claims has come to be the usual way of dealing with matters of this kind

‣ SEE — Saguisag vs Ochoa, G.R. No. 212426, January 12, 2016


‣ Since the VFA has already allowed the entry of US troops in the Philippines, the President’s entering into
the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) in the form of an executive agreement is
permissible since it merely implements an existing treaty.

‣ NOTE — the President’s power to enter into executive agreements with foreign states is merely an adjunct of
his executive power and duty to faithfully execute laws (including treaties)

POWER TO DEPORT ALIENS


‣ RULE — THE POWER TO DEPORT ALIENS IS LODGED IN THE PRESIDENT, SUBJECT TO THE LIMITATIONS PRESCRIBED BY LAW
‣ SEE — Tan Tong v. Deportation Board, 96 Phil. 934, 936 (1955)
‣ The power to deport aliens is lodged in the President of the Republic of the Philippines. As an act of state, it is
vested in the Executive by virtue of his office, subject only to the regulations prescribed in Section 69 of the
Revised Administrative Code or to such future legislation as may be promulgated on the subject

‣ There is no provision in the Constitution nor act of the legislature defining the power, as it is evident that it is the
intention of the law to grant to the Chief Executive full discretion to determine whether an alien's residence in the
country is so undesirable as to effect or inure the security, welfare or interest of the state. The adjudication of facts
upon which the deportation is predicated also devolves on the Chief Executive whose decision is final and
executory.

BUDGETARY POWER; OBLIGATION TO PREPARE THE NATIONAL BUDGET

Section 22. The President shall submit to the Congress, within thirty days from the opening of every regular session as
the basis of the general appropriations bill, a budget of expenditures and sources of financing, including receipts from
existing and proposed revenue measures.

INFORMATION POWER; OBLIGATION TO ADDRESS THE CONGRESS

Section 23. The President shall address the Congress at the opening of its regular session. He may also appear before it
at any other time.

OTHER POWERS OF THE PRESIDENT

1. Power to call Congress to a special session (Art. 6, Sec. 15)


2. Power to approve or veto legislative bills (Art. 6, Sec. 27)
3. Power to consent to deputation of government personnel by the Commission on Elections and to discipline such
deputies (Art. 9C, Sec. 2)
4. By delegation from Congress, emergency powers and tariff powers (Art. 6, Sec. 23[2] and 28[2])
5. General supervision over local governments and autonomous regional governments (Art. 10)
6. Residual Powers
‣ Marcos vs Manglapus, G.R. No. 88211 September 15, 1989
‣ To the President, the problem is one of balancing the general welfare and the common good against the exercise
of rights of certain individuals. The power involved is the President's residual power to protect the general welfare
of the people. It is founded on the duty of the President, as steward of the people. To paraphrase Theodore
Roosevelt, it is not only the power of the President but also his duty to do anything not forbidden by the
Constitution or the laws that the needs of the nation demand [See Corwin, supra, at 153]. It is a power borne by
the President's duty to preserve and defend the Constitution. It also may be viewed as a power implicit in the

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President's duty to take care that the laws are faithfully executed [see Hyman, The American President, where the
author advances the view that an allowance of discretionary power is unavoidable in any government and is best
lodged in the President].

‣ More particularly, this case calls for the exercise of the President's powers as protector of the peace. The power of
the President to keep the peace is not limited merely to exercising the commander-in-chief powers in times of
emergency or to leading the State against external and internal threats to its existence. The President is not only
clothed with extraordinary powers in times of emergency, but is also tasked with attending to the day-to-day
problems of maintaining peace and order and ensuring domestic tranquility in times when no foreign foe appears
on the horizon. Wide discretion, within the bounds of law, in fulfilling presidential duties in times of peace is not in
any way diminished by the relative want of an emergency specified in the commander-in-chief provision. For in
making the President commander-in-chief the enumeration of powers that follow cannot be said to exclude the
President's exercising as Commander-in- Chief powers short of the calling of the armed forces, or suspending the
privilege of the writ of habeas corpus or declaring martial law, in order to keep the peace, and maintain public
order and security.

‣ That the President has the power under the Constitution to bar the Marcos's from returning has been recognized
by memembers of the Legislature, and is manifested by the Resolution proposed in the House of Representatives
and signed by 103 of its members urging the President to allow Mr. Marcos to return to the Philippines "as a
genuine unselfish gesture for true national reconciliation and as irrevocable proof of our collective adherence to
uncompromising respect for human rights under the Constitution and our laws." The Resolution does not question
the President's power to bar the Marcoses from returning to the Philippines, rather, it appeals to the President's
sense of compassion to allow a man to come home to die in his country.

‣ What we are saying in effect is that the request or demand of the Marcoses to be allowed to return to the
Philippines cannot be considered in the light solely of the constitutional provisions guaranteeing liberty of abode
and the right to travel, subject to certain exceptions, or of case law which clearly never contemplated situations
even remotely similar to the present one. It must be treated as a matter that is appropriately addressed to those
residual unstated powers of the President which are implicit in and correlative to the paramount duty residing in
that office to safeguard and protect general welfare. In that context, such request or demand should submit to the
exercise of a broader discretion on the part of the President to determine whether it must be granted or denied.

‣ Marcos vs Manglapus, G.R. No. 88211 October 27, 1989


‣ It cannot be denied that the President, upon whom executive power is vested, has unstated residual powers which
are implied from the grant of executive power and which are necessary for her to comply with her duties under the
Constitution. The powers of the President are not limited to what are expressly enumerated in the article on the
Executive Department and in scattered provisions of the Constitution. This is so, notwithstanding the avowed
intent of the members of the Constitutional Commission of 1986 to limit the powers of the President as a reaction
to the abuses under the regime of Mr. Marcos, for the result was a limitation of specific power of the President,
particularly those relating to the commander-in-chief clause, but not a diminution of the general grant of executive
power.
‣ That the President has powers other than those expressly stated in the Constitution is nothing new. This is
recognized under the U.S. Constitution from which we have patterned the distribution of governmental powers
among three (3) separate branches. Article II, [section] 1, provides that "The Executive Power shall be vested in a
President of the United States of America." In Alexander Hamilton's widely accepted view, this statement cannot
be read as mere shorthand for the specific executive authorizations that follow it in [sections] 2 and 3. Hamilton
stressed the difference between the sweeping language of article II, section 1, and the conditional language of
article I, [section] 1: "All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States . . ."
Hamilton submitted that "[t]he [article III enumeration [in sections 2 and 31 ought therefore to be considered, as
intended merely to specify the principal articles implied in the definition of execution power; leaving the rest to flow
from the general grant of that power, interpreted in confomity with other parts of the Constitution...
‣ In Myers v. United States, the Supreme Court — accepted Hamilton's proposition, concluding that the federal
executive, unlike the Congress, could exercise power from sources not enumerated, so long as not forbidden by
the constitutional text: the executive power was given in general terms, strengthened by specific terms where
emphasis was regarded as appropriate, and was limited by direct expressions where limitation was needed. . ."
The language of Chief Justice Taft in Myers makes clear that the constitutional concept of inherent power is not a
synonym for power without limit; rather, the concept suggests only that not all powers granted in the Constitution
are themselves exhausted by internal enumeration, so that, within a sphere properly regarded as one of
"executive' power, authority is implied unless there or elsewhere expressly limited.

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JUDICIAL POWER AND THE POWER OF JUDICIAL REVIEW

Section 1. The judicial power shall be vested in one Supreme Court and in such lower courts as may be established by
law.

Judicial power includes the duty of the courts of justice to settle actual controversies involving rights which are legally
demandable and enforceable, and to determine whether or not there has been a grave abuse of discretion amounting to
lack or excess of jurisdiction on the part of any branch or instrumentality of the Government.

Section 5. The Supreme Court shall have the following powers:


(2) Review, revise, reverse, modify, or affirm on appeal or certiorari, as the law or the Rules of Court may provide, final
judgments and orders of lower courts in:
(a) All cases in which the constitutionality or validity of any treaty, international or executive agreement, law,
presidential decree, proclamation, order, instruction, ordinance, or regulation is in question.
(b) All cases involving the legality of any tax, impost, assessment, or toll, or any penalty imposed in relation thereto.
(c) All cases in which the jurisdiction of any lower court is in issue.
(d) All criminal cases in which the penalty imposed is reclusion perpetua or higher.
(e) All cases in which only an error or question of law is involved.

Section 4.
(2) All cases involving the constitutionality of a treaty, international or executive agreement, or law, which shall be heard
by the Supreme Court en banc, and all other cases which under the Rules of Court are required to be heard en banc,
including those involving the constitutionality, application, or operation of presidential decrees, proclamations, orders,
instructions, ordinances, and other regulations, shall be decided with the concurrence of a majority of the Members
who actually took part in the deliberations on the issues in the case and voted thereon.

CIVIL CODE
Article 7. XXXXXX
When the courts declared a law to be inconsistent with the Constitution, the former shall be void and the latter shall
govern.

Administrative or executive acts, orders and regulations shall be valid only when they are not contrary to the laws or the
Constitution. (5a)

Article 8. Judicial decisions applying or interpreting the laws or the Constitution shall form a part of the legal system of
the Philippines. (n)

WHERE JUDICIAL POWER IS VESTED


‣ RULE — THE JUDICIAL POWER SHALL BE VESTED IN —
1. The Supreme Court

2. Lower courts established by law

WHAT IS JUDICIAL POWER?


‣ It includes —

1. The duty of the courts of justice to settle actual controversies involving rights which are legally demandable and
enforceable

2. The power to determine whether or not there has been a grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of
jurisdiction (GADALEJ) on the part of any branch or instrumentality of the Government

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POWER TO SETTLE ACTUAL CONTROVERSIES INVOLVING DEMANDABLE AND ENFORCEABLE RIGHTS


‣ RULE — Courts have the power to settle actual controversies involving rights which are legally demandable and
enforceable
‣ Judicial power is the authority to settle justiciable controversies or disputes involving rights that are enforceable and
demandable before the courts of justice or the redress of wrongs for violation of such rights. (Lopez v. Roxas 1966)

‣ Can Congress pass a law which effectively reverses a decision of the Supreme Court?

EXPANDED CERTIORARI JURISDICTION OF THE SUPREME COURT


‣ RULE — Courts have the power to determine whether or not there has been a grave abuse of discretion
amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction on the part of any branch or instrumentality of the Government
‣ This has been referred to as the “expanded certiorari jurisdiction” of the Supreme Court

‣ What does “grave abuse of discretion” mean?


‣ It refers to such capricious and whimsical exercise of judgment as is equivalent to lack of jurisdiction. The abuse of
discretion must be patent and gross as to amount to an evasion of positive duty or a virtual refusal to perform a duty
enjoined by law, or to act at all in contemplation of law, as where the power is exercised in an arbitrary and despotic
manner by reason of passion or hostility. (Sinon v. Civil Service Commission 1992)

‣ What are Political Questions?


‣ Political questions refer "to those questions which, under the Constitution, are to be decided by the people in their
sovereign capacity, or in regard to which full discretionary authority has been delegated to the legislative or executive
branch of the government. It is concerned with issues dependent upon the wisdom, not legality of a particular
measure. (Tanada vs Cuenco)
‣ They are non-justiciable controversy by virtue of the principle of separation of powers
‣ Can Political Questions be subject to Judicial Review?
‣ NO. Purely political questions are beyond the scope of judicial review.

‣ BUT — The Supreme Court may take cognizance of governmental acts alleged to be “political questions”, BUT ONLY
to determine —

1. Whether they are in accordance with the limitations and boundaries imposed by the Constitution or Laws (to
determine whether or not they are really political questions, or rather “constitutional or legal questions:

2. Whether or not there has been a grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction (under its
expanded certiorari jurisdiction)

‣ BERNAS — The expanded certiorari jurisdiction embodied in the 1987 Constitution does NOT nullify the long standing
doctrine on political questions as being beyond the pale of judicial power. This partial definition of judicial power made
by the new Constitution has for its purpose to emphasize that when "grave abuse of discretion" is committed even by
the highest executive authority, the judiciary should not hide behind the political questions doctrine.

‣ SEE THE FOLLOWING CASES —


‣ Garcia vs Executive Secretary, G.R. No. 157584, April 2, 2009
‣ If an issue is clearly identified by the text of the Constitution as matters for discretionary action by a particular
branch of government or to the people themselves then it is held to be a political question.

‣ On the surface of any case held to involve a political question is found a textually demonstrable constitutional
commitment of the issue to a coordinate political department; or a lack of judicially discoverable and
manageable standards for resolving it; or the impossibility of deciding without an initial policy determination of
a kind clearly for non-judicial discretion; or the impossibility of a court’s undertaking independent resolution
without expressing lack of the respect due coordinate branches of government; or an unusual need for
unquestioning adherence to a political decision already made; or the potentiality of embarrassment from
multifarious pronouncements by various departments on the one question.

‣ Recourse to the political question doctrine necessarily raises the underlying doctrine of separation of powers
among the three great branches of government that our Constitution has entrenched. But at the same time that
the Constitution mandates this Court to respect acts performed by co-equal departments done within their
sphere of competence and authority, it has also allowed us to cross the line of separation on a very limited and
specific point – to determine whether the acts of the executive and the legislative departments are null because
they were undertaken with grave abuse of discretion.

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‣ When political questions are involved, the Constitution limits the determination as to whether there has been
grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction on the part of the official whose action is
being questioned.

‣ Marcos vs Manglapus, 177 SCRA 668 (1989)

‣ The present Constitution limits resort to the political question doctrine and broadens the scope of judicial
inquiry into areas which the Court, under previous constitutions, would have normally left to the political
departments to decide

‣ Bengzon vs Senate Blue Ribbon Committee, 203 SCRA 767 (1991)

‣ The "allocation of constitutional boundaries" is a task that this Court must perform under the Constitution. The
political question doctrine neither interposes an obstacle to judicial determination of the rival claims. The
jurisdiction to delimit constitutional boundaries has been given to this Court. It cannot abdicate that obligation
mandated by the 1987 Constitution, although said provision by no means does away with the applicability of
the principle in appropriate cases

‣ Daza vs Singson, 180 SCRA 496 (1989)


‣ In the case now before us, the jurisdictional objection becomes even less tenable and decisive. The reason is
that, even if we were to assume that the issue presented before us was political in nature, we would still not be
precluded from resolving it under the expanded jurisdiction conferred upon us that now covers, in proper
cases, even the political question

‣ Francisco vs House of Representatives, G.R. No. 160261, November 10, 2003


‣ Section 1, Article VIII, of the Court does not define what are justiciable political questions and non-justiciable
political questions, however. Identification of these two species of political questions may be problematic.
There has been no clear standard. The American case of Baker v. Carr attempts to provide some—

a. A textually demonstrable constitutional commitment of the issue to a coordinate political department

b. The lack of judicially discoverable and manageable standards for resolving it

c. The impossibility of deciding without an initial policy determination of a kind clearly for non-judicial
discretion.

‣ These standards are not separate and distinct concepts but are interrelated to each in that the presence
of one strengthens the conclusion that the others are also present.

‣ The problem in applying the foregoing standards is that the American concept of judicial review is radically
different from our current concept, for Section 1, Article VIII of the Constitution provides our courts with far less
discretion in determining whether they should pass upon a constitutional issue.

‣ In our jurisdiction, the determination of a truly political question from a non-justiciable political question lies in
the answer to the question of whether there are constitutionally imposed limits on powers or functions
conferred upon political bodies. If there are, then our courts are duty-bound to examine whether the branch or
instrumentality of the government properly acted within such limits.

‣ BERNAS — The doctrine in Baker v. Carr does NOT apply to the Philippines. It is submitted that, because of
the duty of the court to determine the existence of grave abuse of discretion, the question is not political even
when there is "an unusual need for unquestioning adherence to a political decision already made; or the
potentiality of embarrassment from multifarious pronouncements by various departments on one question.

‣ Imbong vs Ochoa, G.R. No. 204819, April 8, 2014


‣ In its relationship with its co-equals, the Judiciary recognizes the doctrine of separation of powers which
imposes upon the courts proper restraint, born of the nature of their functions and of their respect for the other
branches of government, in striking down the acts of the Executive or the Legislature as unconstitutional.
Verily, the policy is a harmonious blend of courtesy and caution.

‣ It has also long been observed, however, that in times of social disquietude or political instability, the great
landmarks of the Constitution are apt to be forgotten or marred, if not entirely obliterated. In order to address
this, the Constitution impresses upon the Court to respect the acts performed by a co-equal branch done
within its sphere of competence and authority, but at the same time, allows it to cross the line of separation but
only at a very limited and specific point to determine whether the acts of the executive and the legislative
branches are null because they were undertaken with grave abuse of discretion.Thus, while the Court may not
pass upon questions of wisdom, justice or expediency of the RH Law, it may do so where an attendant
unconstitutionality or grave abuse of discretion results.

RATIONALE OF THE EXPANDED CERTIORARI JURISDICTION OF THE SUPREME COURT


‣ SEE — Francisco vs House of Representatives, G.R. No. 160261, November 10, 2003

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‣ To ensure the potency of the power of judicial review to curb grave abuse of discretion by "any branch or
instrumentalities of government," the afore-quoted Section 1, Article VIII of the Constitution engraves, for the first time
into its history, into block letter law the so-called "expanded certiorari jurisdiction" of this Court, the nature of and
rationale for which are mirrored in the following excerpt from the sponsorship speech of its proponent, former Chief
Justice Constitutional Commissioner Roberto Concepcion: “Fellow Members of this Commission, this is actually a
product of our experience during martial law. As a matter of fact, it has some antecedents in the past, but the role of
the judiciary during the deposed regime was marred considerably by the circumstance that in a number of cases
against the government, which then had no legal defense at all, the solicitor general set up the defense of political
questions and got away with it. As a consequence, certain principles concerning particularly the writ of habeas corpus,
that is, the authority of courts to order the release of political detainees, and other matters related to the operation and
effect of martial law failed because the government set up the defense of political question. And the Supreme Court
said: "Well, since it is political, we have no authority to pass upon it." The Committee on the Judiciary feels that this
was not a proper solution of the questions involved. It did not merely request an encroachment upon the rights of the
people, but it, in effect, encouraged further violations thereof during the martial law regime.”
‣ Briefly stated, courts of justice determine the limits of power of the agencies and offices of the government as well as
those of its officers. In other words, the judiciary is the final arbiter on the question whether or not a branch of
government or any of its officials has acted without jurisdiction or in excess of jurisdiction, or so capriciously as to
constitute an abuse of discretion amounting to excess of jurisdiction or lack of jurisdiction. This is not only a judicial
power but a duty to pass judgment on matters of this nature.

‣ This is the background of paragraph 2 of Section 1, which means that the courts cannot hereafter evade the duty to
settle matters of this nature, by claiming that such matters constitute a political question

POWER OF JUDICIAL REVIEW


‣ RULE — THE SUPREME COURT HAS THE POWER TO DECLARE GOVERNMENT ACTS AS UNCONSTITUTIONAL
‣ The power of judicial review is the power of the courts to test the validity of executive and legislative acts for their
conformity with the Constitution. Through such power, the judiciary enforces and upholds the supremacy of the
Constitution.

‣ The Supreme Court may declare the unconstitutionality of any —

1. Treaty, International or executive agreement

2. Law

3. Presidential decree, proclamation, order, instruction

4. Ordinance

5. Administrative regulation

‣ RATIONALE — One of the greatest contributions of the American system to this country is the concept of judicial review.
This concept rests on the extraordinary simple foundation that the Constitution is the supreme law. It was ordained by the
people, the ultimate source of all political authority. It confers limited powers on the national government. If the
government consciously or unconsciously oversteps these limitations there must be some authority competent to hold it
in control, to thwart its unconstitutional attempt, and thus to vindicate and preserve inviolate the will of the people as
expressed in the Constitution. This power the courts exercise. This is the beginning and the end of the theory of judicial
review. (David vs Arroyo 2006)
‣ What is the procedural remedy in seeking to declare governmental acts as unconstitutional?
1. Petition for Certiorari under its power of Judicial Review (Art. 8, Sec. 1 and 5[2a], 1987 Constitution)
2. Petition for Declaratory Relief (Rule 63, Rules of Court)
3. Petition for Prohibition (Rule 64, 65, Rules of Court)

‣ SEE — Araullo vs Aquino, G.R. No. 209287, July 1, 2014


‣ The remedies of certiorari and prohibition are necessarily broader in scope and reach, and the writ of certiorari or
prohibition may be issued to correct errors of jurisdiction committed not only by a tribunal, corporation, board or
officer exercising judicial, quasi-judicial or ministerial functions but also to set right, undo and restrain any act of
grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction by any branch or instrumentality of the
Government, even if the latter does not exercise judicial, quasi-judicial or ministerial functions. This application is
expressly authorized by the text of the second paragraph of Section 1, Art. 8 of the 1987 Constitution. Thus,
petitions for certiorari and prohibition are appropriate remedies to raise constitutional issues and to review and/or
prohibit or nullify the acts of legislative and executive officials.

‣ Necessarily, in discharging its duty under Section 1, Art. 8, to set right and undo any act of grave abuse of
discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction by any branch or instrumentality of the Government, the
Court is not at all precluded from making the inquiry provided the challenge was properly brought by interested or

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affected parties. The Court has been thereby entrusted expressly or by necessary implication with both the duty
and the obligation of determining, in appropriate cases, the validity of any assailed legislative or executive action.
This entrustment is consistent with the republican system of checks and balances.

‣ Is the exercise of power of impeachment by Congress subject to judicial review?


‣ YES. Under the expanded certiorari jurisdiction of the Supreme Court.

‣ There are Constitutionally defined safeguards in the exercise of impeachment. This shows that the Constitution did
not intend to leave the matter of impeachment to the sole discretion of Congress. Instead, it provided for certain well-
defined limits or “judicially discoverable standards" for determining the validity of the exercise of such discretion,
through the power of judicial review. There exists no constitutional basis for the contention that the exercise of judicial
review over impeachment proceedings would upset the system of checks and balances. (Francisco vs HREP 2003)
‣ Can lower courts declare a law as unconstitutional (can they exercise the power of judicial review)?
‣ YES. But it only affects the parties to the case.

‣ Since the power of judicial review flows from judicial power and since inferior courts are possessed of judicial power, it
may fairly be inferred that the power of judicial review is not a power exclusive to the Supreme Court. This same
conclusion may be inferred from Article X, Section 5(2) which confers on the Supreme Court appellate jurisdiction over
judgments and decrees of inferior courts in all cases in which the constitutionality or validity of any treaty, international
agreement, law, presidential decree, proclamation, order, instruction, ordinance, or regulation is in question.

‣ The Constitution contemplates that the inferior courts should have jurisdiction in cases involving constitutionality of
any treaty or law, for it speaks of appellate review of final judgments of inferior courts in cases where such
constitutionality happens to be in issue. (J.M. Tuason and Co. v. Court of Appeals 1961)

REQUISITES FOR JUDICIAL REVIEW


‣ RULE — The constitutionality of a statute will be passed on only if, and to the extent that, it is directly and
necessarily involved in a justiciable controversy and is essential to the protection of the rights of the parties
concerned.
‣ The power of judicial review does not repose upon the courts a "self-starting capacity. Hence, there is a need to comply
with the following requisites of judicial review —

1. There must be a justiciable and actual case or controversy calling for the exercise of judicial power

2. The parties bringing the action must have legal standing or locus standi
3. The question of constitutionality must be raised at the earliest opportunity

4. The question of constitutionality must be the very lis mota of the case

REQUISITES FOR JUDICIAL REVIEW (EXPOUNDED)


1. JUSTICIABLE AND ACTUAL CASE OR CONTROVERSY CALLING FOR THE EXERCISE OF JUDICIAL POWER
a. Ripeness and Maturity — the question of constitutionality must be ripe for adjudication and not prematurely
raised for judicial inquiry
‣ The question of constitutionality involves a conflict of legal rights, an assertion of opposite legal claims

‣ An actual case or controversy means an existing case or controversy that is appropriate or ripe for determination,
not conjectural or anticipatory, lest the decision of the court would amount to an advisory opinion. (Imbong vs
Ochoa 2014)
‣ Corollary to the requirement of an actual case or controversy is the requirement of ripeness. A question is ripe for
adjudication when the act being challenged has had a direct adverse effect on the individual challenging it. For a
case to be considered ripe for adjudication, it is a prerequisite that something has then been accomplished or
performed by either branch before a court may come into the picture, and the petitioner must allege the existence
of an immediate or threatened injury to himself as a result of the challenged action. He must show that he has
sustained or is immediately in danger of sustaining some direct injury as a result of the act complained of (Imbong
vs Ochoa 2014)

b. Justiciability — the constitutional issue must be susceptible of judicial determination


‣ It is not the mere existence of a conflict or controversy that will authorize the exercise by the courts of its power of
review; more importantly, the issue involved must be susceptible of judicial determination.

‣ An actual case or controversy involves a conflict of legal right, an opposite legal claims susceptible of judicial
resolution. It is "definite and concrete, touching the legal relations of parties having adverse legal interest;" a real
and substantial controversy admitting of specific relief. (David vs Arroyo 2006)

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‣ The rule is that courts do not sit to adjudicate mere academic questions to satisfy scholarly interest, however
intellectually challenging. The controversy must be justiciable-definite and concrete, touching on the legal relations
of parties having adverse legal interests. In other words, the pleadings must show an active antagonistic assertion
of a legal right, on the one hand, and a denial thereof, on the other; that is, it must concern a real, tangible and not
merely a theoretical question or issue. There ought to be an actual and substantial controversy admitting of
specific relief through a decree conclusive in nature, as distinguished from an opinion advising what the law would
be upon a hypothetical state of facts. (Imbong vs Ochoa 2014)
‣ The power does not extend to hypothetical questions since any attempt at abstraction could only lead to dialectics
and barren legal questions unrelated to actualities. (La Bugal v Ramos 2004)

‣ The following are NOT judicial determination —

i. Questions which are moot or academic

ii. Questions of policy or wisdom or “political questions”

iii. Questions which are based on extra-legal or other similar considerations

‣ What are moot or academic cases?


‣ A moot case is one that ceases to present a justiciable controversy by virtue of supervening events, so that a
declaration thereon would be of no practical use or value. (Mattel, Inc. v. Francisco 2008)
‣ Can the judiciary resolve moot cases?
‣ NO. Courts decline jurisdiction over such case and should dismiss it on the ground of mootness.

‣ EXCEPT — Courts may decide moot or academic cases in the following cases—
1. There is a grave violation of the Constitution

2. The exceptional character of the situation and the paramount public interest is involved

3. When the constitutional issue raised requires formulation of controlling principles to guide the bench, the
bar, and the public

4. The case is capable of repetition yet evading review (David vs Arroyo 2006)

2. LEGAL STANDING OR LOCUS STANDI


‣ TEST — “Direct Injury Test” — The person challenging the act must have "standing" to challenge; he must have a
personal and substantial interest in the case such that he has sustained, or will sustain, direct injury as a result of its
enforcement. (People v. Vera 1937). The Court has adopted the "direct injury" test of People vs Vera in our jurisdiction.
The Vera doctrine was upheld in a litany of cases. (David vs Arroyo 2006)
‣ The term “interest” means a material interest, an interest in issue affected by the challenged official act, as
distinguished from mere interest in the question involved, or a mere incidental interest. (IBP v. Zamora 2000)
‣ The person bring the action must show the following—
a. That he has personally suffered some actual or threatened injury as a result of the allegedly illegal conduct of
government

b. The injury is fairly traceable to the challenged action

c. The injury is likely to be redressed by a favorable action


‣ The gist of the question of standing is whether a party alleges such personal stake in the outcome of the controversy
as to assure that concrete adverseness which sharpens the presentation of issues upon which the court depends for
illumination of difficult constitutional questions. (Francisco vs HREP 2003)
‣ Unless aperson is injuriously affected in any of his constitutional rights by the operation of statute or ordinance, he has
no standing. (La Bugal vs Ramos 2004)

‣ Can the courts exercise the power of judicial review in a petition filed by parties without legal standing?
‣ NO. Courts decline jurisdiction over such case or dismiss it on ground of lack of legal standing

‣ EXCEPT — Under the following exceptions, the courts may take cognizance of the case even if the petitioners
lack legal standing —
a. Under the “Doctrine of Transcendental Importance” when the constitutional issues raised are of
paramount importance to the public
‣ Jurisprudence allows what it calls a "liberal approach" to standing. When the subject in issue is of
transcendental interest to the public, the Court entertains the suit even if those suing do not have a
personal and direct interest such that they are stand to suffer harm. (Kilosbayan v. Guingona 1993)

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‣ The Court leans on the doctrine that "the rule on standing is a matter of procedure, hence, can be relaxed
for non-traditional plaintiffs like ordinary citizens, taxpayers, and legislators when the public interest so
requires, such as when the matter is of transcendental importance, of overreaching significance to society,
or of paramount public interest. (Imbong vs Ochoa 2014)
‣ Determinants of the existence of “transcendental importance —
1. The character of the funds or other assets involved in the case

2. The presence of a clear case of disregard of a constitutional or statutory prohibition by the public
respondent agency or instrumentality of the government

3. The lack of any other party with a more direct and specific interest in raising the questions being raised.
(Francisco vs HREP 2003)
b. Third-Party Standing
‣ Generally, the "as applied challenge" embodies the rule that one can challenge the constitutionality of a
statute only if he asserts a violation of his own rights. The rule prohibits one from challenging the
constitutionality of the statute grounded on a violation of the rights of third persons not before the court.
This rule is also known as the “prohibition against third-party standing.” (Imbong vs Ochoa 2014)
‣ BUT SEE — White Light Corp v. City of Manila, G.R. No. 122846, January 20, 2009
‣ In this case, the Court allowed the motel operators, instead of its customers who are the actual injured
parties to bring the suit to assail the unconstitutionality of the ordinance prohibiting “short-time”. The
Court recognized the right of litigants to bring actions on behalf of third parties, provided the following
requisites are satisfied —

i. The litigant must have suffered an ‘injury-in-fact,' thus giving him or her a "sufficiently concrete
interest" in the outcome of the issue in dispute

ii. The litigant must have a close relation to the third party

iii. There must exist some hindrance to the third party's ability to protect his or her own interests

‣ What is the difference between “legal standing” and “real party-in-interest”?


‣ Legal standing — involves public rights and interests may be involved. The injured parties are the public at large
(thus, they are brought by concerned citizens, taxpayers or voters who actually sue in the public interest)
‣ Real-party- in interest — only private rights and interests are involved. The suit is brought by the private party
injured
‣ SEE — Kilosbayan, Inc. v. Morato, G.R. No. 118910 July 17, 1995
‣ Legal standing, because of its constitutional and public policy underpinnings, is very different from questions
relating to whether a particular plaintiff is the real party in interest or has capacity to sue. Although all three
requirements are directed towards ensuring that only certain parties can maintain an action, standing
restrictions require a partial consideration of the merits, as well as broader policy concerns relating to the
proper role of the judiciary in certain areas.

‣ Standing is a special concern in constitutional law because in some cases suits are brought not by parties who
have been personally injured by the operation of a law or by official action taken, but by concerned citizens,
taxpayers or voters who actually sue in the public interest.

‣ Hence the question in standing is whether such parties have "alleged such a personal stake in the outcome of
the controversy as to assure that concrete adverseness which sharpens the presentation of issues upon which
the court so largely depends for illumination of difficult constitutional questions.”
3. THE QUESTION OF CONSTITUTIONALITY MUST BE RAISED AT THE EARLIEST OPPORTUNITY
‣ The question of constitutionality must be raised at the earliest opportunity, so that if not raised by the pleadings,
ordinarily it may not be raised at the trial, and if not raised in the trial court, it will not be considered on appeal.

‣ This third requisite should not be taken to mean that the question of constitutionality must be raised immediately after
the execution of the state action complained of. That the question of constitutionality has not been raised before is not
a valid reason for refusing to allow it to be raised later. A contrary rule would mean that a law, otherwise
unconstitutional, would lapse into constitutionality by the mere failure of the proper party to promptly file a case to
challenge the same. (La Bugal vs Ramos 2004)
‣ The earliest opportunity to raise a constitutional issue is to raise it in the pleadings before a competent court that can
resolve the same, such that, if it was not raised in the pleadings before a competent court, it cannot be considered at
the trial, and, if not considered in the trial, it cannot be considered on appeal. (Estrarija vs Ranada 2006)

4. THE QUESTION OF CONSTITUTIONALITY MUST BE THE VERY LIS MOTA OF THE CASE

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‣ Courts will not touch the issue of constitutionality unless it is truly unavoidable and is the very lis mota or crux of the
controversy.

‣ It is a well-settled maxim of adjudication that an issue assailing the constitutionality of a governmental act should be
avoided whenever possible. (Francisco vs HREP 2003)

‣ A court should not pass upon a constitutional question and decide a law to be unconstitutional or invalid, unless such
question is raised by the parties and that when it is raised, if the record also presents some other ground upon which
the court may rest its judgment, that course will be adopted and the constitutional question will be left for
consideration until a case arises in which a decision upon such question will be unavoidable. (Sotto v. Commission on
Elections)

KINDS OF LEGAL STANDING (AS RECOGNIZED IN JURISPRUDENCE)


1. CITIZEN’S SUIT
‣ When suing as a citizen, the interest of the petitioner assailing the constitutionality of a statute must be direct and
personal. He must be able to show, not only that the law or any government act is invalid, but also that he sustained
or is in imminent danger of sustaining some direct injury as a result of its enforcement, and not merely that he suffers
thereby in some indefinite way. It must appear that the person complaining has been or is about to be denied some
right or privilege to which he is lawfully entitled or that he is about to be subjected to some burdens or penalties by
reason of the statute or act complained of. In fine, when the proceeding involves the assertion of a public right, the
mere fact that he is a citizen satisfies the requirement of personal interest. (Francisco vs HREP 2003)

2. CITIZEN’S CLASS SUIT


‣ When dealing with class suits filed in behalf of all citizens, persons intervening must be sufficiently numerous to fully
protect the interests of all concerned to enable the court to deal properly with all interests involved in the suit, for a
judgment in a class suit, whether favorable or unfavorable to the class, is, under the res judicata principle, binding on
all members of the class whether or not they were before the court. Where it clearly appears that not all interests can
be sufficiently represented, a class suit ought to fail. (Francisco vs HREP 2003)

3. TAXPAYER’S SUIT
‣ A taxpayer is allowed to sue where the following requisites are present —

a. The case involves the expenditure of public funds by virtue of legislative action

‣ Such as when —

i. There is a claim that public funds are illegally disbursed

ii. That public money is being deflected to any improper purpose

iii. That there is a wastage of public funds through the enforcement of an invalid or unconstitutional law.

‣ A taxpayer's action is properly brought only when there is an exercise by Congress of its taxing or spending
power. (Gonzalez v. Narvasa 2000)

b. The taxpayer must specifically prove that he has sufficient interest in preventing the illegal expenditure of
money raised by taxation

c. The taxpayer would sustain a direct injury as a result of the enforcement of the questioned statute or
contract
4. VOTER’S SUIT
‣ There must be a showing of obvious interest in the validity of the election law in question (David vs Arroyo 2006)
5. LEGISLATOR’S SUIT
‣ As for a legislator, he is allowed to sue to question the validity of any official action which he claims infringes his
prerogatives as a legislator. Indeed, a member of the House of Representatives has standing to maintain inviolate the
prerogatives, powers and privileges vested by the Constitution in his office. (Francisco vs HREP 2003)
6. GOVERNMENT SUIT
‣ The Government of the Philippines is a proper party to question the validity of its own laws, because more than any
one, it should be concerned with the constitutionality of its acts. In that case, it was held that the government has
substantial interest in having the Probation Law declared as unconstitutional, because more than the damage caused
by the illegal expenditure of public funds is the mortal would inflicted upon the fundamental law by the enforcement of
an invalid statute. (People vs Vera)

EFFECT OF THE DECLARATION OF THE UNCONSTITUTIONALITY OF A LAW


‣ RULE — WHEN THE COURTS DECLARE A LAW TO BE UNCONSTITUTIONAL, IT IS VOID AND INEFFECTIVE

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‣ The general rule is that a void law or administrative act cannot be the source of legal rights or duties. An
unconstitutional act is not a law; it confers no rights; it imposes no duties; it affords no protection; it creates no office;
it is inoperative as if it has not been passed at all.

‣ Article 7 of the Civil Code enunciates this general rule — When the courts declare a law to be inconsistent with the
Constitution, the former shall be void and the latter shall govern. Administrative or executive acts, orders and
regulations shall be valid only when they are not contrary to the laws of the Constitution. It is understandable why it
should be so, the Constitution being supreme and paramount. Any legislative or executive act contrary to its terms
cannot survive. (Philippine Coconut Producers Federation vs Republic 2012)

‣ EXCEPT — UNCONSTITUTIONAL LAWS MAY STILL BE A SOURCE OF RIGHTS AND DUTIES UNDER THE “DOCTRINE OF OPERATIVE
FACT”

‣ This is when a legislative or executive act, prior to its being declared as unconstitutional by the courts, is valid and
must be complied with. (Francisco Chavez v. NHA 2007)
‣ BERNAS — Our Supreme Court has already rejected the view that an unconstitutional act confers no rights, imposes
no duties, and affords no protection whatsoever. Instead, the Court adopted the view that before an act is declared
unconstitutional it is an “operative fact” which can be the source of rights and duties. This recognition of an
unconstitutional statute as an “operative fact” before it is declared unconstitutional

‣ The doctrine of operative fact is an exception to the general rule, such that a judicial declaration of invalidity may not
necessarily obliterate all the effects and consequences of a void act prior to such declaration. It is an argument for the
application of equity and fair play. 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. (CIR vs San Roque Power Corp. 2013)
‣ Questions of rights claimed to have become vested, of status, of prior determinations deemed to have finality and
acted upon accordingly, of public policy in the light of the nature both of the statute and of its previous application,
demand examination. These questions are among the most difficult of those which have engaged the attention of
courts, state and federal, and it is manifest from numerous decisions that an all-inclusive statement of a principle of
absolute retroactive invalidity cannot be justified. (Philippine Coconut Producers Federation vs Republic 2012)
‣ The doctrine is applicable when a declaration of unconstitutionality will impose an undue burden on those who have
relied on the invalid law. Thus, it was applied to a criminal case when a declaration of unconstitutionality would put the
accused in double jeopardy or would put in limbo the acts done by a municipality in reliance upon a law creating it.
(Philippine Coconut Producers Federation vs Republic 2012)

APPLICATION OF THE DOCTRINE OF OPERATIVE FACT


1. THE DOCTRINE APPLIES TO PREVENT INJUSTICE AND PROMOTE EQUITY DESPITE THE DECLARATION OF UNCONSTITUTIONALITY.
IT DOES NOT MAKE WHAT IS UNCONSTITUTIONAL, CONSTITUTIONAL
‣ SEE — De Agbayani vs. PNB, G.R. No. L-23127 April 29, 1971
‣ In this case, the “operative fact doctrine” has been applied in a case where the period before a moratorium law
was declared unconstitutional was not allowed to toll the prescriptive period of the right to foreclose mortgage.

‣ It does not admit of doubt that prior to the declaration of nullity such challenged legislative or executive act must
have been in force and had to be complied with. This is so as until after the judiciary, in an appropriate case,
declares its invalidity, it is entitled to obedience and respect. Parties may have acted under it and may have
changed their positions. What could be more fitting than that in a subsequent litigation regard be had to what has
been done while such legislative or executive act was in operation and presumed to be valid in all respects.

‣ It is now accepted as a doctrine that prior to its being nullified, its existence as a fact must be reckoned
with. This is merely to reflect awareness that precisely because the judiciary is the governmental organ
which has the final say on whether or not a legislative or executive measure is valid, a period of time may
have elapsed before it can exercise the power of judicial review that may lead to a declaration of nullity. It
would be to deprive the law of its quality of fairness and justice then, if there be no recognition of what had
transpired prior to such adjudication.
‣ Such an approach all the more commends itself whenever police power legislation intended to promote public
welfare but adversely affecting property rights is involved. While subject to be assailed on due process, equal
protection and non-impairment grounds, all that is required to avoid the corrosion of invalidity is that the rational
basis or reasonableness test is satisfied.

‣ The legislature on the whole is not likely to allow an enactment suffering from the infirmity of out running the
bounds of reason and resulting in sheer oppression. It may be of course that if challenged, an adverse judgment
could be the result, as its running counter to the Constitution could still be shown. In the meanwhile though, in the

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normal course of things, it has been acted upon by the public and accepted as valid. To ignore such a fact would
indeed be the fruitful parent of injustice. Moreover, as its constitutionality is conditioned on its being fair or
reasonable, which in turn is dependent on the actual situation, never static but subject to change, a measure valid
when enacted may subsequently, due to altered circumstances, be stricken down.

‣ SEE — Chavez v. National Housing Authority, G.R. No. 164527, August 15, 2007
‣ When petitioner filed the instant case against respondents on August 5, 2004, the JVAs were already terminated
by virtue of the MOA between the NHA and RBI. The respondents had no reason to think that their agreements
were unconstitutional or even questionable, as in fact, the concurrent acts of the executive department lent validity
to the implementation of the Project. The SMDRP agreements have produced vested rights in favor of the slum
dwellers, the buyers of reclaimed land who were issued titles over said land, and the agencies and investors who
made investments in the project or who bought SMPPCs. These properties and rights cannot be disturbed or
questioned after the passage of around ten (10) years from the start of the SMDRP implementation. Evidently, the
"operative fact" principle has set in. The titles to the lands in the hands of the buyers can no longer be invalidated.

2. THE DOCTRINE DOES NOT APPLY WHEN IT WOULD RESULT IN OR PROMOTE INJUSTICE AND INEQUITY
‣ It will not be applied when its result would be iniquitous and would send a wrong signal that an act may be justified
when based on an unconstitutional provision of law

‣ SEE — Planters Products vs. Fertiphil Corporation, G.R. No. 166006, March 14, 2008
‣ The doctrine is applicable when a declaration of unconstitutionality will impose an undue burden on those who
have relied on the invalid law. Here, We do not find anything iniquitous in ordering PPI to refund the amounts paid
by Fertiphil under LOI No. 1465. It unduly benefited from the levy. It was proven during the trial that the levies paid
were remitted and deposited to its bank account. Quite the reverse, it would be inequitable and unjust not to order
a refund. To do so would unjustly enrich PPI at the expense of Fertiphil. We cannot allow PPI to profit from an
unconstitutional law. Justice and equity dictate that PPI must refund the amounts paid by Fertiphil.

‣ SEE — Yap v. Thenamaris Ship’s Management, G.R. No. 179532, May 30, 2011
‣ The doctrine of operative fact cannot apply in this case. After all, it was not the fault of petitioner that he lost his
job due to an act of illegal dismissal committed by respondents. To rule otherwise would be iniquitous to petitioner
and other OFWs, and would, in effect, send a wrong signal that principals/employers and recruitment/manning
agencies may violate an OFWs security of tenure which an employment contract embodies and actually profit from
such violation based on an unconstitutional provision of law.

3. THE DOCTRINE OF OPERATIVE FACT CANNOT BE APPLIED TO ADMINISTRATIVE RULES AND REGULATIONS
‣ These rules are governed by the laws that enable them. The doctrine of operative fact only applies to laws and
executive issuances

‣ SEE — CIR vs San Roque Power Corp, G.R. No. 187485, October 8, 2013
‣ Clearly, for the operative fact doctrine to apply, there must be a "legislative or executive measure," meaning a law
or executive issuance, that is invalidated by the court. From the passage of such law or promulgation of such
executive issuance until its invalidation by the court, the effects of the law or executive issuance, when relied upon
by the public in good faith, may have to be recognized as valid. In the present case, however, there is no such law
or executive issuance that has been invalidated by the Court except BIR Ruling No. DA-489-03.

‣ BUT — Under Section 246, taxpayers may rely upon a rule or ruling issued by the Commissioner from the time the
rule or ruling is issued up to its reversal by the Commissioner or this Court. The reversal is not given retroactive
effect. This, in essence, is the doctrine of operative fact, as applied in BIR regulations. There must, however, be a
rule or ruling issued by the Commissioner that is relied upon by the taxpayer in good faith. A mere administrative
practice, not formalized into a rule or ruling, will not suffice because such a mere administrative practice may not
be uniformly and consistently applied. An administrative practice, if not formalized as a rule or ruling, will not be
known to the general public and can be availed of only by those within formal contacts with the government
agency.Since the law has already prescribed in Section 246 of the Tax Code how the doctrine of operative fact
should be applied, there can be no invocation of the doctrine of operative fact other than what the law has
specifically provided in Section 246.

3. THE DOCTRINE ONLY APPLIES TO WHEN A DECLARATION OF UNCONSTITUTIONALITY WILL IMPOSE AN UNDUE BURDEN ON
THOSE WHO HAVE RELIED ON THE INVALID LAW PRIOR TO ITS INVALIDATION BY A SUPREME COURT DECISION, AND NOT
AFTER SUCH DECISION IS PROMULGATED

‣ SEE — Millarosa vs Carmel Dev’t Inc., G.R. No. 194538, November 27, 2013
‣ A judicial declaration of invalidity of laws may not necessarily obliterate all the effects and consequences of a void
act occurring prior to such a declaration. As a general rule, a law declared as unconstitutional produces no effect
whatsoever and confers no right on any person. It matters not whether the person is a party to the original case,
because "not only the parties but all persons are bound by the declaration of unconstitutionality, which means that

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no one may thereafter invoke it nor may the courts be permitted to apply it in subsequent cases. It is, in other
words, a total nullity.

‣ The operative fact doctrine is a rule of equity. As such, it must be applied as an exception to the general rule that
an unconstitutional law produces no effects. The doctrine is applicable when a declaration of unconstitutionality
will impose an undue burden on those who have relied on the invalid law, but it can never be invoked to validate as
constitutional an unconstitutional act.

‣ In this case, the petitioner could not be said to have been unduly burdened by reliance on an invalid law. At the
time petitioner built the structures on the premises, he ought to have been aware of the binding effects of the
Tuason case and the subsequent unconstitutionality of P.D. 293. These circumstances necessarily remove him
from the ambit of the operative fact doctrine.

NATURE OF THE DECISIONS OF THE SUPREME COURT


1. THEY HAVE THE FORCE OF LAW
‣ The settled rule supported by numerous authorities is a restatement of the legal maxim “legis interpretatio legis vim
obtinet” — the interpretation placed upon the written law by a competent court has the force of law (People v. Jabinal)
‣ Under the principle of separation of powers, the judicial department has no power to enact laws because the same is
the exclusive province of the legislative department. Likewise, it is not the province of the courts to supervise
legislation and keep it within the bounds of propriety and common sense, as these matters are exclusively of
legislative concern. While judicial decisions form part of the legal system, judicial decisions are not laws. They are,
however, evidence of what the law means, and this is why they are part of the legal system of the Philippines. The
interpretation placed upon the written law by a competent court has the force of law (People vs. Jabinal 1974)
‣ Judicial decisions applying and interpreting the law shall form part of the legal system of the Philippines. In effect,
judicial decisions, although in themselves not laws, assume the same authority as the statute itself and, until
authoritatively abandoned, necessarily become, to the extent that they are applicable, the criteria which must control
the actuations not only of those called upon to abide thereby but also those duty bound to enforce obedience thereto
(Caltex, Inc. v. Palomar)

2. THEY ARE CONCLUSIVE AND BINDING UPON THE OTHER BRANCHES AND CANNOT BE REVERSED BY ANY BODY OTHER THAN
ITSELF
‣ SEE — In re Laureta, G.R. No. L-68635 March 12, 1987
‣ Resolutions of the Supreme Court as a collegiate court, whether en banc or division, speak for themselves and are
entitled to full faith and credence and are beyond investigation or inquiry under the same principle of
conclusiveness of enrolled bills of the legislature.

‣ The Court has consistently stressed that "the doctrine of separation of powers calls for the executive, legislative
and judicial departments being left alone to discharge their duties as they see fit. It has thus maintained in the
same way that the judiciary has a right to expect that neither the President nor Congress would cast doubt on the
mainspring of its orders or decisions, it should refrain from speculating as to alleged hidden forces at work that
could have impelled either coordinate branch into acting the way it did.

‣ The concept of separation of powers presupposes mutual respect by and between the three departments of the
government. To allow litigants to go beyond the Court's resolution and claim that the members acted "with
deliberate bad faith" and rendered and "unjust resolution" in disregard or violation of the duty of their high office to
act upon their own independent consideration and judgment of the matter at hand would be to destroy the
authenticity, integrity and conclusiveness of such collegiate acts and resolutions and to disregard utterly the
presumption of regular performance of official duty. To allow such collateral attack would destroy the separation of
powers and undermine the role of the Supreme Court as the final arbiter of all justiciable disputes.

‣ Dissatisfied litigants and/or their counsels cannot without violating the separation of powers mandated by the
Constitution relitigate in another forum the final judgment of this Court on legal issues submitted by them and their
adversaries for final determination to and by the Supreme Court and which fall within the judicial power to
determine and adjudicate exclusively vested by the Constitution in the Supreme Court and in such inferior courts
as may be established by law.

3. ITS EXECUTION IS SUBJECT TO THE CONTROL OF THE COURT


‣ SEE — Echegaray vs Sec. of Justice, G.R. No. 132601, October 12, 1998
‣ The power to control the execution of its decision is an essential aspect of jurisdiction. It cannot be the subject of
substantial subtraction for our Constitution vests the entirety of judicial power in one Supreme Court and in such
lower courts as may be established by law. To be sure, the important part of a litigation, whether civil or criminal, is
the process of execution of decisions where supervening events may change the circumstance of the parties and
compel courts to intervene and adjust the rights of the litigants to prevent unfairness. It is because of these

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unforeseen, supervening contingencies that courts have been conceded the inherent and necessary power of
control of its processes and orders to make them conformable to law and justice.

JURISPRUDENCE ON THE NATURE AND CONCEPT OF JUDICIAL POWER AND JUDICIAL REVIEW
‣ ANGARA V. ELECTORAL COMMISSION, 63 PHIL 139 (1936)
‣ In times of social disquietude or political excitement, the great landmarks of the Constitution are apt to be forgotten or
marred, if not entirely obliterated. In cases of conflict, the judicial department is the only constitutional organ which
can be called upon to determine the proper allocation of powers between the several departments and among the
integral or constituent units thereof.

‣ This "moderating power" to "determine the proper allocation of powers" of the different branches of government and
"to direct the course of government along constitutional channels" is inherent in all courts as a necessary
consequence of the judicial power itself, which is "the power of the court to settle actual controversies involving rights
which are legally demandable and enforceable.

‣ Judicial review is indeed an integral component of the delicate system of checks and balances which, together with
the corollary principle of separation of powers, forms the bedrock of our republican form of government and insures
that its vast powers are utilized only for the benefit of the people for which it serves.

‣ The separation of powers is a fundamental principle in our system of government. It obtains not through express
provision but by actual division in our Constitution. Each department of the government has exclusive cognizance of
matters within its jurisdiction, and is supreme within its own sphere. But it does not follow from the fact that the three
powers are to be kept separate and distinct that the Constitution intended them to be absolutely unrestrained and
independent of each other. The Constitution has provided for an elaborate system of checks and balances to secure
coordination in the workings of the various departments of the government. And the judiciary in turn, with the
Supreme Court as the final arbiter, effectively checks the other departments in the exercise of its power to determine
the law, and hence to declare executive and legislative acts void if violative of the Constitution.

‣ As any human production, our Constitution is of course lacking perfection and perfectibility, but as much as it was
within the power of our people, acting through their delegates to so provide, that instrument which is the expression of
their sovereignty however limited, has established a republican government intended to operate and function as a
harmonious whole, under a system of checks and balances, and subject to specific limitations and restrictions
provided in the said instrument. The Constitution sets forth in no uncertain language the restrictions and limitations
upon governmental powers and agencies. If these restrictions and limitations are transcended it would be
inconceivable if the Constitution had not provided for a mechanism by which to direct the course of government along
constitutional channels, for then the distribution of powers would be mere verbiage, the bill of rights mere expressions
of sentiment, and the principles of good government mere political apothegms. Certainly, the limitations and
restrictions embodied in our Constitution are real as they should be in any living constitution. In the United States
where no express constitutional grant is found in their constitution, the possession of this moderating power of the
courts, not to speak of its historical origin and development there, has been set at rest by popular acquiescence for a
period of more than one and a half centuries. In our case, this moderating power is granted, if not expressly, by clear
implication from section 2 of article VIII of our Constitution.

‣ The Constitution is a definition of the powers of government. Who is to determine the nature, scope and extent of
such powers? The Constitution itself has provided for the instrumentality of the judiciary as the rational way. And when
the judiciary mediates to allocate constitutional boundaries, it does not assert any superiority over the other
departments; it does not in reality nullify or invalidate an act of the legislature, but only asserts the solemn and sacred
obligation assigned to it by the Constitution to determine conflicting claims of authority under the Constitution and to
establish for the parties in an actual controversy the rights which that instrument secures and guarantees to them.
This is in truth all that is involved in what is termed "judicial supremacy" which properly is the power of judicial review
under the Constitution.

‣ Even then, this power of judicial review is limited to actual cases and controversies to be exercised after full
opportunity of argument by the parties, and limited further to the constitutional question raised or the very lis mota
presented. Any attempt at abstraction could only lead to dialectics and barren legal questions and to sterile
conclusions unrelated to actualities. Narrowed as its function is in this manner, the judiciary does not pass upon
questions of wisdom, justice or expediency of legislation. More than that, courts accord the presumption of
constitutionality to legislative enactments, not only because the legislature is presumed to abide by the Constitution
but also because the judiciary in the determination of actual cases and controversies must reflect the wisdom and
justice of the people as expressed through their representatives in the executive and legislative departments of the
government question raised or the very lis mota presented. Any attempt at abstraction could only lead to dialectics
and barren legal questions and to sterile conclusions unrelated to actualities. Narrowed as its function is in this
manner, the judiciary does not pass upon questions of wisdom, justice or expediency of legislation. More than that,
courts accord the presumption of constitutionality to legislative enactments, not only because the legislature is
presumed to abide by the Constitution but also because the judiciary in the determination of actual cases and

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controversies must reflect the wisdom and justice of the people as expressed through their representatives in the
executive and legislative departments of the government.

‣ ARAULLO VS AQUINO, G.R. NO. 209287, JULY 1, 2014


‣ The Constitution is a definition of the powers of government. Who is to determine the nature, scope and extent of
such powers? The Constitution itself has provided for the instrumentality of the judiciary as the rational way. And when
the judiciary mediates to allocate constitutional boundaries, it does not assert any superiority over the other
department; it does not in reality nullify or invalidate an act of the legislature, but only asserts the solemn and sacred
obligation assigned to it by the Constitution to determine conflicting claims of authority under the Constitution and to
establish for the parties in an actual controversy the rights which that instrument secures and guarantees to them.
This is in truth all that is involved in what is termed "judicial supremacy" which properly is the power of judicial review
under the Constitution.

‣ The background and rationale of the expansion of judicial power under the 1987 Constitution were laid out during the
deliberations of the 1986 Constitutional Commission by Commissioner Roberto R. Concepcion (a former Chief Justice
of the Philippines) in his sponsorship of the proposed provisions on the Judiciary, where he said:– “The Supreme
Court, like all other courts, has one main function: to settle actual controversies involving conflicts of rights which are
demandable and enforceable. There are rights which are guaranteed by law but cannot be enforced by a judicial party.
In a decided case, a husband complained that his wife was unwilling to perform her duties as a wife. The Court said:
"We can tell your wife what her duties as such are and that she is bound to comply with them, but we cannot force her
physically to discharge her main marital duty to her husband. There are some rights guaranteed by law, but they are so
personal that to enforce them by actual compulsion would be highly derogatory to human dignity." This is why the first
part of the second paragraph of Section 1 provides that: Judicial power includes the duty of courts to settle actual
controversies involving rights which are legally demandable or enforceable… The courts, therefore, cannot entertain,
much less decide, hypothetical questions. In a presidential system of government, the Supreme Court has, also,
another important function. The powers of government are generally considered divided into three branches: the
Legislative, the Executive and the Judiciary. Each one is supreme within its own sphere and independent of the others.
Because of that supremacy power to determine whether a given law is valid or not is vested in courts of justice.”

‣ Briefly stated, courts of justice determine the limits of power of the agencies and offices of the government as well as
those of its officers. In other words, the judiciary is the final arbiter on the question whether or not a branch of
government or any of its officials has acted without jurisdiction or in excess of jurisdiction, or so capriciously as to
constitute an abuse of discretion amounting to excess of jurisdiction or lack of jurisdiction. This is not only a judicial
power but a duty to pass judgment on matters of this nature.

‣ This is the background of paragraph 2 of Section 1, which means that the courts cannot hereafter evade the duty to
settle matters of this nature, by claiming that such matters constitute a political question.

‣ FRANCISCO VS HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, G.R. NO. 160261, NOVEMBER 10, 2003


‣ The major difference between the judicial power of the Philippine Supreme Court and that of the U.S. Supreme Court
is that while the power of judicial review is only impliedly granted to the U.S. Supreme Court and is discretionary in
nature, that granted to the Philippine Supreme Court and lower courts, as expressly provided for in the Constitution, is
not just a power but also a duty, and it was given an expanded definition to include the power to correct any grave
abuse of discretion on the part of any government branch or instrumentality.

‣ Can the Supreme Court refuse to exercise jurisdiction of a case it is legally entitled to resolve?
‣ NO. The exercise of judicial restraint over justiciable issues is not an option before this Court. Adjudication may not
be declined, because this Court is not legally disqualified. Nor can jurisdiction be renounced as there is no other
tribunal to which the controversy may be referred. Jurisdiction is not just a power; it is a solemn duty which may
not be renounced. To renounce it, even if it is vexatious, would be a dereliction of duty.” Even in cases where it is
an interested party, the Court under our system of government cannot inhibit itself and must rule upon the
challenge because no other office has the authority to do so. (Francisco vs HREP 2003)

‣ IMBONG VS OCHOA, G.R. NO. 204819, APRIL 8, 2014


‣ The Court must demonstrate its unflinching commitment to protect those cherished rights and principles embodied in
the Constitution. In this connection, it bears adding that while the scope of judicial power of review may be limited, the
Constitution makes no distinction as to the kind of legislation that may be subject to judicial scrutiny, be it in the form
of social legislation or otherwise.

‣ The reason is simple and goes back to the earlier point. The Court may pass upon the constitutionality of acts of the
legislative and the executive branches, since its duty is not to review their collective wisdom but, rather, to make sure
that they have acted in consonance with their respective authorities and rights as mandated of them by the
Constitution. If after said review, the Court finds no constitutional violations of any sort, then, it has no more authority
of proscribing the actions under review

‣ The duty (to adjudicate) remains to assure that the supremacy of the Constitution is upheld. " Once a controversy as
to the application or interpretation of constitutional provision is raised before this Court (as in the instant case), it
becomes a legal issue which the Court is bound by constitutional mandate to decide.

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‣ Judicial review is essential for the maintenance and enforcement of the separation of powers and the balancing of
powers among the three great departments of government through the definition and maintenance of the boundaries
of authority and control between them. To him, judicial review is the chief, indeed the only, medium of participation - or
instrument of intervention - of the judiciary in that balancing operation.

JURISPRUDENCE ON THE REQUISITES OF JUDICAL REVIEW


‣ TAN VS MACAPAGAL, G.R. NOS. L-34161 FEBRUARY 29, 1972
‣ The legislative and executive branches are not bound to seek its advice as to what to do or not to do. Judicial inquiry
has to be postponed in the meanwhile. It is a prerequisite that something had by then been accomplished or
performed by either branch before a court may come into the picture. Only then may the courts pass on the validity of
what was done, if and when the latter is challenged in an appropriate legal proceeding.

‣ Such a principle applies as well when the inquiry concerns the scope of the competence lodged in the Constitutional
Convention. The judiciary must leave it free to fulfill its responsibility according to its lights. There is to be no
interference. Its autonomy is to be respected. It cannot be otherwise if it is to perform its function well. Such should be
the case not only because it is a coordinate agency but also because its powers are transcendent, amounting as it
does to submitting for popular ratification proposals which may radically alter the organization and functions of all
three departments, including the courts. It is therefore much more imperative that the rule of non-interference be
strictly adhered to until the appropriate time comes.

‣ More specifically, as long as any proposed amendment is still unacted on by it, there is no room for the interposition of
judicial oversight. Only after it has made concrete what it intends to submit for ratification may the appropriate case
be instituted. Until then, the courts are devoid of jurisdiction. That is the command of the Constitution as interpreted
by this Court. Unless and until such a doctrine loses force by being overruled or a new precedent being announced, it
is controlling. That is implicit in the rule of law.

‣ PACU VS SECRETARY OF EDUCATION, G.R. NO. L-5279, OCTOBER 31, 1955


‣ The mere apprehension that the Secretary of Education might under the law withdraw the permit of one of petitioners
does not constitute a justiciable controversy. All the petitioners have permits to operate and are actually operating by
virtue of their permits. And they do not assert that the respondent Secretary of Education has threatened to revoke
their permits. They have suffered no wrong under the terms of law—and, naturally need no relief in the form they now
seek to obtain.

‣ It is an established principle that to entitle a private individual immediately in danger of sustaining a direct injury as the
result of that action and it is not sufficient that he has merely a general to invoke the judicial power to determine the
validity of executive or legislative action he must show that he has sustained or is interest common to all members of
the public.

‣ Courts will not pass upon the constitutionality of a law upon the complaint of one who fails to show that he is injured
by its operation.

‣ The power of courts to declare a law unconstitutional arises only when the interests of litigant require the use of that
judicial authority for their protection against actual interference, a hypothetical threat being insufficient.

‣ Judicial power is limited to the decision of actual cases and controversies. The authority to pass on the validity of
statutes is incidental to the decision of such cases where conflicting claims under the Constitution and under a
legislative act assailed as contrary to the Constitution are raised. It is legitimate only in the last resort, and as
necessity in the determination of real, earnest, and vital controversy between litigants.

‣ Courts do not sit to adjudicate mere academic questions to satisfy scholarly interest therein, however intellectually
solid the problem may be. This is specially true where the issues "reach constitutional dimensions, for then there
comes into play regard for the court's duty to avoid decision of constitutional issues unless avoidance becomes
evasion

‣ DAVID VS ARROYO, G.R. NO. 171396, MAY 3, 2006


‣ Locus standi — the right of appearance in a court of justice on a given question

‣ Real-party- in interest — the party who stands to be benefited or injured by the judgment in a civil suit or the party
entitled to the avails of the suit. The plaintiff’s standing is based on his own right to the relief sought.

‣ The difficulty of determining locus standi arises in public suits. Here, the plaintiff who asserts a "public right" in
assailing an allegedly illegal official action, does so as a representative of the general public. He may be a person who
is affected no differently from any other person. He could be suing as a "stranger," or in the category of a "citizen," or
‘taxpayer." In either case, he has to adequately show that he is entitled to seek judicial protection. In other words, he
has to make out a sufficient interest in the vindication of the public order and the securing of relief as a "citizen" or
“taxpayer.

‣ Case law in most jurisdictions now allows both "citizen" and "taxpayer" standing in public actions. The distinction was
first laid down in Beauchamp v. Silk, where it was held that the plaintiff in a taxpayer’s suit is in a different category

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from the plaintiff in a citizen’s suit. In the former, the plaintiff is affected by the expenditure of public funds, while in the
latter, he is but the mere instrument of the public concern.

‣ As held by the New York Supreme Court in People ex rel Case v. Collins:"In matter of mere public right, however...the
people are the real parties...It is at least the right, if not the duty, of every citizen to interfere and see that a public
offence be properly pursued and punished, and that a public grievance be remedied.”

‣ With respect to taxpayer’s suits, Terr v. Jordan held that "the right of a citizen and a taxpayer to maintain an action in
courts to restrain the unlawful use of public funds to his injury cannot be denied.”

‣ However, to prevent just about any person from seeking judicial interference in any official policy or act with which he
disagreed with, and thus hinders the activities of governmental agencies engaged in public service, the United State
Supreme Court laid down the more stringent "direct injury" test in Ex Parte Levitt, later reaffirmed in Tileston v. Ullman.
The same Court ruled that for a private individual to invoke the judicial power to determine the validity of an executive
or legislative action, he must show that he has sustained a direct injury as a result of that action, and it is not sufficient
that he has a general interest common to all members of the public.

‣ This Court adopted the "direct injury" test in our jurisdiction. In People v. Vera, it held that the person who impugns the
validity of a statute must have "a personal and substantial interest in the case such that he has sustained, or will
sustain direct injury as a result." The Vera doctrine was upheld in a litany of cases.

‣ However, being a mere procedural technicality, the requirement of locus standi may be waived by the Court in the
exercise of its discretion. Thus, the Court has adopted a rule that even where the petitioners have failed to show direct
injury, they have been allowed to sue under the principle of "transcendental importance.

‣ Taxpayers, voters, concerned citizens, and legislators may be accorded standing to sue, provided that the following
requirements are met —

1. The cases involve constitutional issues;

2. For taxpayers — there must be a claim of illegal disbursement of public funds or that the tax measure is

3. unconstitutional;

4. For voters — there must be a showing of obvious interest in the validity of the election law in question;

5. For concerned citizens — there must be a showing that the issues raised are of transcendental importance which
must be settled early; and

6. For Legislators — there must be a claim that the official action complained of infringes upon their prerogatives as
legislators.

POWERS OF THE SUPREME COURT

Section 5. The Supreme Court shall have the following powers:


(1) Exercise original jurisdiction over cases affecting ambassadors, other public ministers and consuls, and over petitions
for certiorari, prohibition, mandamus, quo warranto, and habeas corpus.
(2) Review, revise, reverse, modify, or affirm on appeal or certiorari, as the law or the Rules of Court may provide, final
judgments and orders of lower courts in:
(a) All cases in which the constitutionality or validity of any treaty, international or executive agreement, law,
presidential decree, proclamation, order, instruction, ordinance, or regulation is in question.
(b) All cases involving the legality of any tax, impost, assessment, or toll, or any penalty imposed in relation thereto.
(c) All cases in which the jurisdiction of any lower court is in issue.
(d) All criminal cases in which the penalty imposed is reclusion perpetua or higher.
(e) All cases in which only an error or question of law is involved.
(3) Assign temporarily judges of lower courts to other stations as public interest may require. Such temporary assignment
shall not exceed six months without the consent of the judge concerned.
(4) Order a change of venue or place of trial to avoid a miscarriage of justice.
(5) Promulgate rules concerning the protection and enforcement of constitutional rights, pleading, practice, and
procedure in all courts, the admission to the practice of law, the integrated bar, and legal assistance to the under-
privileged. Such rules shall provide a simplified and inexpensive procedure for the speedy disposition of cases, shall
be uniform for all courts of the same grade, and shall not diminish, increase, or modify substantive rights. Rules of
procedure of special courts and quasi-judicial bodies shall remain effective unless disapproved by the Supreme
Court.
(6) Appoint all officials and employees of the Judiciary in accordance with the Civil Service Law.

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Section 6. The Supreme Court shall have administrative supervision over all courts and the personnel thereof.

Section 11. XXXXXX The Supreme Court en banc shall have the power to discipline judges of lower courts, or order their
dismissal by a vote of a majority of the Members who actually took part in the deliberations on the issues in the case and
voted thereon.

POWERS OF THE SUPREME COURT


1. JUDICIAL POWER
a. EXERCISE OF ORIGINAL JURISDICTION OVER
i. Cases affecting ambassadors, other public ministers and consuls

ii. Petitions for certiorari, prohibition, mandamus, quo warranto, and habeas corpus
b. EXERCISE APPEAL AND CERTIORARI POWERS OVER —
i. All cases in which the constitutionality or validity of any treaty, international or executive agreement, law,
presidential decree, proclamation, order, instruction, ordinance, or regulation is in question

ii. All cases involving the legality of any tax, impost, assessment, or toll, or any penalty imposed in relation thereto

iii. All cases in which the jurisdiction of any lower court is in issue

iv. All criminal cases in which the penalty imposed is reclusion perpetua or higher

v. All cases in which only an error or question of law is involved

‣ NOTE — Appeal or certiorari powers pertains to the power of the Supreme Court to review, revise, reverse, modify, or
affirm final judgments and orders of lower courts in the above-mentioned cases

2. AUXILIARY ADMINISTRATIVE POWERS (OVER THE JUDICIAL BRANCH)


‣ The Supreme Court is the administrative head over the judicial branch, it exercises administrative supervision over all
courts and the personnel

‣ Such administrative powers include the power to —

a. Assign temporarily judges of lower courts to other stations as public interest may require

b. Order a change of venue or place of trial to avoid a miscarriage of justice

c. Appoint all officials and employees of the Judiciary in accordance with the Civil Service Law

d. The power to discipline judges of lower courts, or order their dismissal

3. RULE-MAKING POWERS
‣ The Supreme Court is constitutionally empowered to promulgate rules concerning the following matters —

a. Protection and enforcement of constitutional rights, pleading, practice, and procedure in all courts

b. Admission to the practice of law

c. Integrated bar

d. Legal assistance to the under-privileged

‣ NOTE — Such rules shall provide a simplified and inexpensive procedure for the speedy disposition of cases, shall be
uniform for all courts of the same grade, and shall not diminish, increase, or modify substantive rights

MANDATORY REVIEW OF CRIMINAL OFFENSES


‣ RULE — IN ALL CRIMINAL CASES WHERE THE PENALTY IMPOSED BY THE TRIAL COURT IS RECLUSION PERPETUA, LIFE
IMPRISONMENT, OR DEATH, THE CASE SHALL BE FORWARDED TO THE SUPREME COURT FOR AUTOMATIC REVIEW

‣ This is one of the exceptional cases where the Supreme Court may review questions of facts. Also, exceptionally it
allows an appeal to the Supreme Court by a mode other than petition for review on certiorari

‣ In mandating mandatory review of the Supreme Court of death and other sentences, does the Constitution
thereby proscribe intermediate review by the Court of Appeals?
‣ NO. Court of Appeals may review the case, but it should merely render and NOT enter judgment before elevating it to
the Supreme Court.

‣ SEE — People v. Mateo, G.R. No. 147678-87, July 7, 2004

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‣ Up until now, the Supreme Court has assumed the direct appellate review over all criminal cases in which the
penalty imposed is death, reclusion perpetua or life imprisonment. The practice finds justification in the 1987
Constitution. It must be stressed, however, that the constitutional provision is not preclusive in character, and it
does not necessarily prevent the Court, in the exercise of its rulemaking power, from adding an intermediate
appeal or review in favor of the accused.

‣ While the Fundamental Law requires a mandatory review by the Supreme Court of cases where the penalty
imposed is reclusion perpetua, life imprisonment, or death, nowhere, however, has it proscribed an intermediate
review. If only to ensure utmost circumspection before the penalty of death, reclusion perpetua or life
imprisonment is imposed, the Court now deems it wise and compelling to provide in these cases a review by the
Court of Appeals before the case is elevated to the Supreme Court.

‣ Where life and liberty are at stake, all possible avenues to determine his guilt or innocence must be accorded an
accused, and no care in the evaluation of the facts can ever be overdone. A prior determination by the Court of
Appeals on, particularly, the factual issues, would minimize the possibility of an error of judgment. If the Court of
Appeals should affirm the penalty of death, reclusion perpetua or life imprisonment, it could then render judgment
imposing the corresponding penalty as the circumstances so warrant, refrain from entering judgment and elevate
the entire records of the case to the Supreme Court for its final disposition.

AUXILIARY ADMINISTRATIVE POWERS OF THE SUPREME COURT


‣ RULE — THE SUPREME COURT HAS THE POWER OF ADMINISTRATIVE SUPERVISION OVER ALL COURTS AND THE PERSONNEL
‣ This includes the power of the Supreme Court to —

1. Assign temporarily judges of lower courts to other stations as public interest may require
‣ BUT — such temporary assignment shall not exceed six months without the consent of the judge concerned

2. Order a change of venue or place of trial to avoid a miscarriage of justice


3. Appoint all officials and employees of the Judiciary in accordance with the Civil Service Law
4. Discipline judges of lower courts, or order their dismissal
‣ BUT — in cases of dismissal, it must be —

a. Decided by the Supreme Court en banc


b. A vote of a majority of the Members who actually took part in the deliberations on the issues in the case and
voted thereon

‣ If the law creates an executive position and grants it the rank, privileges, emoluments and compensation of a
member of the judiciary such as an RTC judge) does it make the official occupying the position part of the
judiciary? Implying the right to be investigated only by the Supreme Court and to be suspended or removed upon
its recommendation and depriving the President the right to remove or discipline such official?
‣ NO. It would violate the fundamental doctrine of separation of powers, by charging the Supreme Court with the
administrative function of supervisory control over executive officials, and simultaneously reducing pro tanto the
control of the Chief Executive over such officials. (Noblejas vs Teehankee 1968)

POWER OF THE SUPREME COURT TO ORDER CHANGE OF VENUE


‣ RULE — THE SUPREME COURT HAS THE SOLE POWER TO ORDER A CHANGE OF VENUE OR PLACE OF TRIAL TO AVOID A
MISCARRIAGE OF JUSTICE

‣ Thus, the Secretary of Justice has no power to determine what court should hear specific cases. Any such power,
even in the guise of administrative regulation of executive affairs, trenches upon the time-honored separation of the
Executive and the Judiciary; and while not directly depriving the courts of their independence, it would endanger the
rights and immunities of the accused or civil party. One of these incidental and inherent powers of courts is that of
transferring the trial of cases from one court to another of equal rank in a neighboring site, whenever the imperative of
securing a fair and impartial trial, or of preventing a miscarriage of justice, so demands. (People vs Gutierrez 1970)
‣ NOTE — A change of venue of trial does NOT violate the principle that the place of the commission of the crime is
jurisdictional in criminal cases. This is because the case will still be filed in the place where such crime was
committed, only that the venue of trial will be transferred. The holding of the trial in a particular place is more a matter
of venue, rather than jurisdiction. (People vs Gutierrez 1970)

POWER TO DISCIPLINE MEMBERS OF THE JUDICIARY


‣ RULE — THE SUPREME COURT HAS THE SOLE POWER TO DISMISS OR DISCIPLINE JUDGES OF LOWER COURTS
‣ BUT — it must be —

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a. Decided by the Supreme Court en banc
b. A vote of a majority of the Members who actually took part in the deliberations on the issues in the case and voted
thereon

‣ Must disciplinary cases also be heard by the Supreme Court en banc?


‣ BERNAS — The text of Section 11 yields the reading that decisions on disciplinary cases must all be arrived at en
banc. However, People v. Gacott, Jr., G.R. No. 116049, July 13, 1995, ruled, contrary to the inclusive language of the
text, that a decision en banc: is needed only when the penalty to be imposed is dismissal of a judge, disbarment of a
lawyer, suspension of either for more than one year, or a fine exceeding 10,000 pesos.

‣ May the Ombudsman investigate irregularities in the performance of a judge, independently of any administrative
action taken by the Supreme Court?
‣ NO. The Ombudsman may not investigate a judge without administrative action of the Supreme Court.

‣ SEE — Maceda vs Vasquez, G.R. No. 102781, April 22, 1993


‣ The Ombudsman may not investigate a judge independently of any administrative action of the Supreme Court. It
is only the Supreme Court that can oversee the judges' and court personnel's compliance with all laws, and take
the proper administrative action against them if they commit any violation thereof. No other branch of government
may intrude into this power, without running afoul of the doctrine of separation of powers. The Ombudsman
cannot justify its investigation of petitioner on the powers granted to it by the Constitution, for such a justification
not only runs counter to the specific mandate of the Constitution granting supervisory powers to the Supreme
Court over all courts and their personnel, but likewise undermines the independence of the judiciary.

‣ The Ombudsman cannot determine for itself and by itself whether a criminal complaint against a judge, or court
employee, involves an administrative matter. The Ombudsman is duty bound to have all cases against judges and
court personnel filed before it, referred to the Supreme Court for determination as to whether an administrative
aspect is involved therein. (Judge Caoibes, Jr. v. Ombudsman 2001)
‣ What about the discipline of court employees?

RULE-MAKING POWERS OF THE SUPREME COURT


‣ RULE — THE SUPREME COURT HAS THE POWER TO PROMULGATE RULES FOR THE —
1. Protection and enforcement of constitutional rights

2. Pleading, practice, and procedure in all courts

3. Admission to the practice of law

4. Integrated bar

5. Legal assistance to the under-privileged

‣ BERNAS —The new provision empowering the Court to promulgate rules concerning the protection and enforcement
of constitutional rights is intended to emphasize that constitutional rights are not merely declaratory but also
enforceable. This was the basis for the promulgation of the rules on amparo and habeas data
‣ NOTE — The rule making power includes inherent power of the Supreme Court to suspend its own rules

‣ SEE — Baguio Market Vendors v. Judge, G.R. No. 165922, February 26, 2010
‣ The 1987 Constitution enhanced the rule making power of this Court under Section 5(5), Article VIII. This Court for the
first time was given the power to promulgate rules concerning the protection and enforcement of constitutional rights.
Hence the rule on amparo was promulgated.

‣ The Court was also granted for the first time the power to disapprove rules of procedure of special courts and quasi-
judicial bodies. But most importantly, the 1987 Constitution took away the power of Congress to repeal, alter, or
supplement rules concerning pleading, practice and procedure. In fine, the power to promulgate rules of pleading,
practice and procedure is no longer shared by this Court with Congress, more so with the Executive. Thus, for
instance, the payment of legal fees is a vital component of the rules promulgated by this Court concerning pleading,
practice and procedure, it cannot be validly annulled, changed or modified by Congress.

LIMITATIONS ON THE RULE-MAKING POWER OF THE SUPREME COURT


1. It should provide a simplified and inexpensive procedure for the speedy disposition of cases

2. It should be uniform for all courts of the same grade

3. It cannot diminish, increase, or modify substantive rights

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‣ This means that substantive law cannot be amended by a procedural rule. In case of conflict, substantive law
governs. (PNB vs Asuncion 1977)

‣ How do you determine whether a rule prescribed by the Supreme Court, for the practice and procedure of the
lower courts, abridges, enlarges, or modifies any substantive right?
‣ SEE — Fabian v. Desierto, G.R. No. 129742, September 16, 1998
‣ The test is whether the rule really regulates procedure, that is the judicial process for enforcing rights and duties
recognized by substantive law and for justly administering remedy and redress for a disregard or infraction of
them. If the rule takes away a vested right, it is not procedural. If the rule creates a right such as the right to
appeal, it may be classified as a substantive matter; but if it operates as a means of implementing an existing right
then the rule deals merely with procedure.

‣ Thus, the Supreme Court's transfer of pending cases involving a review of decisions of the Office of the
Ombudsman in administrative actions to the Court of Appeals substantive or procedural because it is not the right
to appeal of an aggrieved party which is affected by the law. The right has been preserved. Only the procedure by
which the appeal is to be made or decided has been changed. The rationale for this is that no litigant has a vested
right in a particular remedy, which may be changed by substitution without impairing vested rights, hence he can
have non in rules of procedure which relate to the remedy

‣ Can a law exempt persons from the filing of docket fees?


‣ NO. The payment of legal fees is a vital component of the rules promulgated by the Supreme Court concerning
pleading, practice and procedure, it cannot be validly annulled, changed or modified by Congress. As one of the
safeguards of this Court’s institutional independence, the power to promulgate rules of pleading, practice and
procedure is now the Court’s exclusive domain. That power is no longer shared by the Supreme Court with
Congress, much less the Executive. (In re Napocor 2010)

POWER OF THE SUPREME COURT TO ADMIT AND REGULATE MEMBERS OF THE BAR
‣ RULE — THE SUPREME COURT HAS THE SOLE AUTHORITY TO ADMIT AND DISCIPLINE MEMBERS OF THE BAR
‣ The disciplinary authority of the court over members of the Bar is an aspect of its authority to admit to the Bar. The
desistance of a complainant or witnesses does not strip the Court of jurisdiction because this is a matter of public
interest and concern. (Garrido v. Garrido 2010)
‣ The Constitution vests in the SC plenary powers regarding admission to the bar. (In re Atty. Martial 1978)
‣ Thus, Congress cannot pass a law lowering the passing mark and declaring the same candidates as having passed.
(In re Cunanan 1954)
‣ The disciplinary authority of the court over members of the Bar is an aspect of its authority to admit to the Bar. The
desistance of a complainant or witnesses does not strip the Court of jurisdiction because this is a matter of public
interest and concern. (Garrido v. Garrido 2010)

INTEGRATION OF THE PHILIPPINE BAR


‣ Integration of the Philippine Bar means the official unification of the entire lawyer population of the Philippines. This
requires membership and financial support of every attorney as conditions sine qua non to the practice of law and the
retention of his name in the Roll of Attorneys of the Supreme Court. (In re Integration of the Bar 1972)

‣ Purposes of an Integrated Bar, in general, are —

1. Assist in the administration of justice

2. Foster and maintain, on the part of its members, high ideals of integrity, learning, professional competence, public
service and conduct

3. Safeguard the professional interests of its members

4. Cultivate among its members a spirit of cordiality and brotherhood

5. Provide a forum for the discussion of law, jurisprudence, law reform, pleading, practice, and procedure, and the
relations of the Bar to the Bench and to the public, and public information relating thereto

6. Encourage and foster legal education

7. Promote a continuing program of legal research in substantive and adjective law, and make reports and
recommendations thereon

8. Enable the Bar to discharge its public responsibility effectively (In re Integration of the Bar 1972)

‣ Can membership in the Integrated Bar (and payment of IBP fees) be made pre-requisite to the practice of law?

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‣ YES. If a lawyer refuses to pay membership dues for the Integrated Bar, he may be recommended for removal by the
Supreme Court from the list of attorneys. The practice of law is a privilege that is subject to reasonable regulation by
the State. Bar Integration is mandated by the Constitution. The lawyer is not being compelled to join the association.
Passing the bar examination already made him a member of the bar. All that integration does is provide a national
organization for a well-defined but unorganized and incohesive group of lawyers. The only compulsion to which he is
subjected is the payment of annual dues, and this is justified by the need for elevating the quality of the legal
profession. Also, the Constitution vests in the SC plenary powers regarding admission to the bar. (In re Atty. Martial
Edition 1978)

JURISDICTION OF COURTS

Section 2. The Congress shall have the power to define, prescribe, and apportion the jurisdiction of the various courts but
may not deprive the Supreme Court of its jurisdiction over cases enumerated in Section 5 hereof.

No law shall be passed reorganizing the Judiciary when it undermines the security of tenure of its Members.

ARTICLE 6 — THE LEGISLATIVE DEPARTMENT


Section 30. No law shall be passed increasing the appellate jurisdiction of the Supreme Court as provided in this
Constitution without its advice and concurrence.

‣ RULE — CONGRESS HAS THE POWER TO DEFINE, PRESCRIBE, AND APPORTION THE JURISDICTION OF THE VARIOUS COURTS
‣ This is principally found in BP 129 defining and delineating the jurisdiction of courts.

‣ Can Congress increase the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court?


‣ YES. But only with its advice and consent. (Art. 6, Sec. 30)

‣ NOTE — Congress cannot deprive the jurisdiction the Supreme Court of its jurisdiction over cases in Art. 8, Sec. 5

FISCAL AUTONOMY

Section 3. The Judiciary shall enjoy fiscal autonomy. Appropriations for the Judiciary may not be reduced by the
legislature below the amount appropriated for the previous year and, after approval, shall be automatically and regularly
released.

Section 10. The salary of the Chief Justice and of the Associate Justices of the Supreme Court, and of judges of lower
courts, shall be fixed by law. During their continuance in office, their salary shall not be decreased.

FISCAL AUTONOMY OF THE JUDICIARY


1. The Judiciary shall enjoy fiscal autonomy.

2. Appropriations for the Judiciary may not be reduced by the legislature below the amount appropriated for the previous
yea

3. After approval, the appropriations for the Judiciary shall be automatically and regularly released.

4. The salary of the Chief Justice and of the Associate Justices of the Supreme Court, and of judges of lower courts, shall
be fixed by law; and during their continuance in office, their salary shall not be decreased

‣ Are the salaries of members of the judiciary exempt from income tax?
‣ NO. Although the new Constitution no longer contains the explicit provision in Article XVI, Section 6, of the 1973
Constitution which made the salary of all subject to income tax, it was the clear intention of the Constitutional
Commission that the rule would be the same under the new Constitution

‣ SEE — Nitafan vs CIR, 152 SCRA 284 (1987)


‣ The salaries of Justices and Judges are properly subject to a general income tax law applicable to all income
earners and that the payment of such income tax by Justices and Judges does not fall within the constitutional
protection against decrease of their salaries during their continuance in office.

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‣ It is plain that the Constitution authorizes Congress to pass a law fixing another rate of compensation of Justices
and Judges but such rate must be higher than that which they are receiving at the time of enactment, or if lower, it
would be applicable only to those appointed after its approval. It would be a strained construction to read into the
provision an exemption from taxation in the light of the discussion in the Constitutional Commission.

COMPOSITION OF THE SUPREME COURT

Section 4.
(1) The Supreme Court shall be composed of a Chief Justice and fourteen Associate Justices. It may sit en banc or in its
discretion, in division of three, five, or seven Members. Any vacancy shall be filled within ninety days from the
occurrence thereof. XXXXXXX

‣ The Court is free to create divisions of three, five, or seven.

‣ The purpose of allowing up to five divisions within one Court is to enable the Court to dispose of cases more speedily.

‣ NOTE — Currently, the Supreme Court has 3 divisions of 5 members each.

‣ Are divisions separate and distinct courts?


‣ NO. Actions considered in any of these divisions and decisions rendered therein are, in effect, by the same Tribunal.
Decisions or resolutions of a division of the court are not inferior to an en banc decision.

QUALIFICATIONS OF MEMBERS OF THE JUDICIARY

Section 7.
(1) No person shall be appointed Member of the Supreme Court or any lower collegiate court unless he is a natural-born
citizen of the Philippines. A Member of the Supreme Court must be at least forty years of age, and must have been for
fifteen years or more, a judge of a lower court or engaged in the practice of law in the Philippines.
(2) The Congress shall prescribe the qualifications of judges of lower courts, but no person may be appointed judge
thereof unless he is a citizen of the Philippines and a member of the Philippine Bar.
(3) A Member of the Judiciary must be a person of proven competence, integrity, probity, and independence.

KINDS OF PHILIPPINE COURTS


1. Supreme Court
2. Lower Collegiate Courts
a. Court of Appeals

b. Court of Tax Appeals

c. Sandiganbayan

3. Lower Non-Collegiate Courts


a. Regional Trial Courts

b. Municipal Trial Courts, Metropolitan Trial Courts, Municipal Circuit Trial Courts

QUALIFICATIONS OF MEMBERS OF THE JUDICIARY

MEMBERS OF THE SUPREME COURT MEMBERS OF LOWER COLLEGIATE MEMBERS OF LOWER NON-
COURTS COLLEGIATE COURTS

1. Natural-born citizen of the Philippines


1. Natural-born citizen of the 1. Citizen of the Philippines

Philippines

2. At least forty years of age


2. Member of the Philippine Bar

2. Member of the Philippine Bar

3. Must have been for fifteen years or more, a 3. Other qualifications prescribed
judge of a lower court or engaged in the 3. Other qualifications prescribed by by law

practice of law in the Philippines


law

4. Has proven competence,


4. Has proven competence, integrity, probity, 4. Has proven competence, integrity, integrity, probity, and
and independence probity, and independence independence

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‣ May Congress modify or impose additional qualifications of Members of the Judiciary?


‣ YES. Congress may impose additional qualifications and may alter the statutory qualifications of judges and justices
of lower courts.

‣ BUT — Congress may NOT alter the following —

1. The qualifications of Members of the Supreme Court

2. The constitutional qualifications of other members of the Judiciary.

JUDICIAL AND BAR COUNCIL

Section 8.
(1) A Judicial and Bar Council is hereby created under the supervision of the Supreme Court composed of the Chief
Justice as ex officio Chairman, the Secretary of Justice, and a representative of the Congress as ex officio Members, a
representative of the Integrated Bar, a professor of law, a retired Member of the Supreme Court, and a representative
of the private sector.
(2) The regular members of the Council shall be appointed by the President for a term of four years with the consent of
the Commission on Appointments. Of the Members first appointed, the representative of the Integrated Bar shall
serve for four years, the professor of law for three years, the retired Justice for two years, and the representative of
the private sector for one year.
(3) The Clerk of the Supreme Court shall be the Secretary ex officio of the Council and shall keep a record of its
proceedings.
(4) The regular Members of the Council shall receive such emoluments as may be determined by the Supreme Court. The
Supreme Court shall provide in its annual budget the appropriations for the Council.
(5) The Council shall have the principal function of recommending appointees to the Judiciary. It may exercise such other
functions and duties as the Supreme Court may assign to it.

FUNCTIONS OF THE JUDICIAL AND BAR COUNCIL (JBC)


‣ RULE — THE JBC HAS THE PRINCIPAL FUNCTION OF RECOMMENDING APPOINTEES TO THE JUDICIARY
‣ BUT — It may exercise such other functions and duties as the Supreme Court may assign to it

‣ The JBC is under the supervision of the Supreme Court

‣ It submits a “list” of nominations to vacancies in the Judiciary to the President. The President appoints based on such
list.

‣ BERNAS — The Council was principally designed to eliminate politics from the appointment of judges and justices.
Thus, appointments to the Judiciary do not have to go through a political Commission on Appointments.

‣ May the JBC impose additional qualifications of screening applicants for vacancies in the judiciary?
‣ YES. The JBC has the authority to set the standards/criteria in choosing its nominees for every vacancy in the
judiciary, subject only to the minimum qualifications required by the Constitution and law for every position.

‣ SEE — Villanueva vs JBC, G.R. No. 211833, April 7, 2015


‣ As an offspring of the 1987 Constitution, the JBC is mandated to recommend appointees to the judiciary and only
those nominated by the JBC in a list officially transmitted to the President may be appointed by the latter as justice
or judge in the judiciary. Thus, the JBC is burdened with a great responsibility that is imbued with public interest as
it determines the men and women who will sit on the judicial bench.

‣ While the 1987 Constitution has provided the qualifications of members of the judiciary, this does not preclude the
JBC from having its own set of rules and procedures and providing policies to effectively ensure its mandate.

‣ The functions of searching, screening, and selecting are necessary and incidental to the JBC’s principal function of
choosing and recommending nominees for vacancies in the judiciary for appointment by the President. However,
the Constitution did not lay down in precise terms the process that the JBC shall follow in determining applicants’
qualifications.

‣ In carrying out its main function, the JBC has the authority to set the standards/criteria in choosing its nominees
for every vacancy in the judiciary, subject only to the minimum qualifications required by the Constitution and law
for every position. The search for these long held qualities necessarily requires a degree of flexibility in order to

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determine who is most fit among the applicants. Thus, the JBC has sufficient but not unbridled license to act in
performing its duties.

‣ JBC’s ultimate goal is to recommend nominees and not simply to fill up judicial vacancies in order to promote an
effective and efficient administration of justice. Given this pragmatic situation, the JBC had to establish a set of
uniform criteria in order to ascertain whether an applicant meets the minimum constitutional qualifications and
possesses the qualities expected of him and his office. Thus, the adoption of the five-year requirement policy
applied by JBC to the petitioner’s case is necessary and incidental to the function conferred by the Constitution to
the JBC.

MEMBERS OF THE JUDICIAL AND BAR COUNCIL (JBC)


‣ RULE — THE JBC IS COMPOSED OF 7 MEMBERS, CONSISTING OF THE FOLLOWING —
1. Ex-officio members
a. Chief Justice as ex officio Chairman

b. The Secretary of Justice

c. Representative of the Congress

2. Regular members
a. Representative of the Integrated Bar

b. Professor of law

c. Retired Member of the Supreme Court

d. Representative of the private sector

‣ How are the regular members of the JBC appointed?


‣ The regular members of the Council shall be appointed by the President with the consent of the Commission on
Appointments.

‣ What is the term of the regular members of JBC?


‣ 4 years

‣ BUT — Subject to the rule on staggering of terms — Of the Members first appointed, the representative of the
Integrated Bar shall serve for four years, the professor of law for three years, the retired Justice for two years, and the
representative of the private sector for one year.

‣ Does the representative of Congress come from the House or from the Senate?
‣ BERNAS — From either. This provision was formulated for a unicameral Congress and no change was made when the
final decision was for a bicameral Congress. In practice, the two houses now work out a way of sharing
representation.

‣ Can there be two representatives from Congress, 1 from the Senate and 1 from the HREP, each having 1/2 vote, in
line with the bicameral nature of Congress?
‣ NO. SEE — Chavez vs JBC, G.R. No. 202242, July 17, 2012
‣ The Constitution allows Congress only 1 representative from both houses. the use of the singular letter "a"
preceding "representative of Congress" is unequivocal and leaves no room for any other construction. It is
indicative of what the members of the Constitutional Commission had in mind, that is, Congress may designate
only one (1) representative to the JBC. No particular allusion whatsoever is made on whether the Senate or the
House of Representatives is being referred to, but that, in either case, only a singular representative may be
allowed to sit in the JBC.

‣ It is worthy to note that the seven-member composition of the JBC serves a practical purpose, that is, to provide a
solution should there be a stalemate in voting. This underlying reason leads the Court to conclude that a single
vote may not be divided into half (1/2), between two representatives of Congress, or among any of the sitting
members of the JBC for that matter. This unsanctioned practice can possibly cause disorder and eventually
muddle the JBC’s voting process, especially in the event a tie is reached. The aforesaid purpose would then be
rendered illusory, defeating the precise mechanism that the Constitution itself created. While it would be
unreasonable to expect that the Framers provide for every possible scenario, it is sensible to presume that they
knew that an odd composition is the best means to break a voting deadlock.

‣ The Court’s conclusion that "Congress," in the context of JBC representation, should be considered as one body.
It is evident that the definition of "Congress" as a bicameral body refers to its primary function in government
which is to legislate. This, however, cannot be said in the case of JBC representation because no liaison between
the two houses exists in the workings of the JBC. No mechanism is required between the Senate and the House of

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Representatives in the screening and nomination of judicial officers. Hence, the term "Congress" must be taken to
mean the entire legislative department.

‣ A fortiori, a pretext of oversight cannot prevail over the more pragmatic scheme which the Constitution laid with
firmness, that is, that the JBC has a seat for a single representative of Congress, as one of the co-equal branches
of government. Therefore, to allow the Legislature to have more quantitative influence in the JBC by having more
than one voice speak, whether with one full vote or one-half (1/2) a vote each, would, as one former congressman
and member of the JBC put it, "negate the principle of equality among the three branches of government which is
enshrined in the Constitution.

‣ It is clear, therefore, that the Constitution mandates that the JBC be composed of seven (7) members only. Thus,
any inclusion of another member, whether with one whole vote or half (1/2) of it, goes against that mandate.
Section 8(1), Article VIII of the Constitution, providing Congress with an equal voice with other members of the
JBC in recommending appointees to the Judiciary is explicit.

VACANCIES AND APPOINTMENT OF MEMBERS OF THE JUDICIARY

Section 9. The Members of the Supreme Court and judges of the lower courts shall be appointed by the President from a
list of at least three nominees prepared by the Judicial and Bar Council for every vacancy. Such appointments need no
confirmation.

For the lower courts, the President shall issue the appointments within ninety days from the submission of the list.

Section 4.
(1) The Supreme Court shall be composed of a Chief Justice and fourteen Associate Justices. It may sit en banc or in its
discretion, in division of three, five, or seven Members. Any vacancy shall be filled within ninety days from the
occurrence thereof.

Section 11. The Members of the Supreme Court and judges of lower courts shall hold office during good behavior until
they reach the age of seventy years or become incapacitated to discharge the duties of their office. The Supreme Court
en banc shall have the power to discipline judges of lower courts, or order their dismissal by a vote of a majority of the
Members who actually took part in the deliberations on the issues in the case and voted thereon.

Section 2. XXXXX No law shall be passed reorganizing the Judiciary when it undermines the security of tenure of its
Members.

ARTICLE 11 — ACCOUNTABILITY OF PUBLIC OFFICERS


Section 2. The XXXX the Members of the Supreme Court XXXX may be removed from office on impeachment for, and
conviction of, culpable violation of the Constitution, treason, bribery, graft and corruption, other high crimes, or betrayal
of public trust. All other public officers and employees may be removed from office as provided by law, but not by
impeachment.

APPOINTMENT OF VACANCIES IN THE JUDICIARY


‣ RULE — THE MEMBERS OF THE SUPREME COURT AND JUDGES OF THE LOWER COURTS SHALL BE APPOINTED BY THE
PRESIDENT
‣ The President will choose from a list of at least three nominees prepared by the JBC for every vacancy

‣ Such appointments need no confirmation of the Commission on Appointments

‣ What is the tenure of the members of the judiciary?


‣ The Members of the Supreme Court and judges of lower courts shall hold office during good behavior until they reach
the age of 70 years or become incapacitated to discharge the duties of their office.

‣ Thus, they have security of tenure.

‣ How are vacancies in the Judiciary created?


1. Voluntary resignation

2. Incapacity to discharge the duties of their office

3. Mandatory retirement — upon reaching 70 years of age

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4. Dismissal or removal —

a. Judges or Justices of Lower Courts — may be dismissed by the Supreme Court en banc (Art. 8. Sec. 11)
b. Justices of the Supreme Court — may only be removed by impeachment (Art. 11, Sec. 2)

‣ When should the President make the appointment?


1. Vacancies in the Lower Courts — within 90 days from the submission of the list by the JBC. (Art. 8, Sec. 9)

2. Vacancies in the Supreme Court — within 90 days from the occurrence of the vacancy. (Art. 8, Sec. 4)
‣ NOTE — The President may make appointments to vacancies in the Supreme Court even during the appointments
ban. This is because he is mandated by the Constitution to fill the vacancy within 90 days from the occurrence
thereof. (SEE — De Castro vs JBC 2010)

‣ Does a law providing for reorganization of the judiciary (leading to abolishment of offices) violate security of
tenure? (NOTE — Art. 8, Sec. 2 provides that “No law shall be passed reorganizing the Judiciary when it
undermines the security of tenure of its Members”)
‣ BERNAS — NO. Reorganization by itself need not affect security of tenure.

‣ SEE — De La Llana vs Alba, G.R. No. L-57883 March 12, 1982


‣ Abolition of office is valid when done in good faith and not for political or personal reasons. In such a situation,
properly and logically speaking there is no removal from office because a removal implies that the office exists
after the ouster. The legislature's authority to abolish courts inferior to the Supreme Court is undeniable. The act is
designed to remedy monumental problems in the Judiciary which clearly exist. It is for the legislature to decide
what solutions to adopt

DISQUALIFICATIONS AND PROHIBITIONS ON MEMBERS OF THE JUDICIARY

Section 12. The Members of the Supreme Court and of other courts established by law shall not be designated to any
agency performing quasi-judicial or administrative functions.

ARTICLE 11 — ACCOUNTABILITY OF PUBLIC OFFICERS


Section 16. No loan, guaranty, or other form of financial accommodation for any business purpose may be granted,
directly or indirectly, by any government-owned or controlled bank or financial institution to the President, the Vice-
President, the Members of the Cabinet, the Congress, the Supreme Court, and the Constitutional Commissions, the
Ombudsman, or to any firm or entity in which they have controlling interest, during their tenure.

‣ May the members of the Judiciary be charged with administrative powers and duties?
‣ YES. But only to the extent when it is reasonably incidental to the fulfillment of judicial duties. They cannot perform
quasi-judicial or purely administrative functions .

‣ SEE — Noblejas vs Teehankee G.R. No. L-28790 April 29, 1968


‣ There is no inherent power in the Executive or Legislature to charge the judiciary with administrative functions
except when reasonably incidental to the fulfillment of judicial duties.

‣ The Supreme Court is invested with judicial power only and can have no jurisdiction other than of cases and
controversies falling within the classes enumerated in that article. It cannot give decisions which are merely
advisory; nor can it exercise or participate in the exercise of functions which are essentially legislative or
administrative.

‣ In this spirit, it has been held that the Supreme Court of the Philippines and its members should not and cannot be
required to exercise any power or to perform any trust or to assume any duty not pertaining to or connected with
the administration of judicial functions; and a law requiring the Supreme Court to arbitrate disputes between public
utilities is void.

‣ What are purely administrative functions?


‣ These involve the regulation and control over the conduct and affairs of individuals for their own welfare and the
promulgation of rules and regulations to better carry out the policy of the legislature or such as are devolved upon the
administrative agency by the organic law of its existence. (In re Judge Manzano 1988)

‣ Can members of the Judiciary run for an elective office?


‣ NO. An incumbent judge cannot present himself as a congressional candidate. Such would constitute improper
conduct. (Vistan vs Nicolas 1991)

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RULES IN THE DISPOSITION OF CASES BY THE SUPREME COURT

Section 4.
XXXXXX
(2) All cases involving the constitutionality of a treaty, international or executive agreement, or law, which shall be heard
by the Supreme Court en banc, and all other cases which under the Rules of Court are required to be heard en banc,
including those involving the constitutionality, application, or operation of presidential decrees, proclamations, orders,
instructions, ordinances, and other regulations, shall be decided with the concurrence of a majority of the Members
who actually took part in the deliberations on the issues in the case and voted thereon.
(3) Cases or matters heard by a division shall be decided or resolved with the concurrence of a majority of the Members
who actually took part in the deliberations on the issues in the case and voted thereon, and in no case without the
concurrence of at least three of such Members. When the required number is not obtained, the case shall be decided
en banc: Provided, that no doctrine or principle of law laid down by the court in a decision rendered en banc or in
division may be modified or reversed except by the court sitting en banc.

Section 13. The conclusions of the Supreme Court in any case submitted to it for decision en banc or in division shall be
reached in consultation before the case is assigned to a Member for the writing of the opinion of the Court. A certification
to this effect signed by the Chief Justice shall be issued and a copy thereof attached to the record of the case and served
upon the parties. Any Members who took no part, or dissented, or abstained from a decision or resolution, must state the
reason therefor. The same requirements shall be observed by all lower collegiate courts.

Section 14. No decision shall be rendered by any court without expressing therein clearly and distinctly the facts and the
law on which it is based.

No petition for review or motion for reconsideration of a decision of the court shall be refused due course or denied
without stating the legal basis therefor.

Section 15.
(1) All cases or matters filed after the effectivity of this Constitution must be decided or resolved within twenty-four
months from date of submission for the Supreme Court, and, unless reduced by the Supreme Court, twelve months
for all lower collegiate courts, and three months for all other lower courts.
(2) A case or matter shall be deemed submitted for decision or resolution upon the filing of the last pleading, brief, or
memorandum required by the Rules of Court or by the court itself.
(3) Upon the expiration of the corresponding period, a certification to this effect signed by the Chief Justice or the
presiding judge shall forthwith be issued and a copy thereof attached to the record of the case or matter, and served
upon the parties. The certification shall state why a decision or resolution has not been rendered or issued within said
period.
(4) Despite the expiration of the applicable mandatory period, the court, without prejudice to such responsibility as may
have been incurred in consequence thereof, shall decide or resolve the case or matter submitted thereto for
determination, without further delay.

CASES ARE REQUIRED TO BE HEARD BY THE SUPREME COURT EN BANC


‣ RULE — THE FOLLOWING CASES MUST BE HEARD EN BANC —
1. Cases involving the constitutionality of a treaty, international or executive agreement, or law;

2. Cases which under the Rules of Court may be required to be heard en banc
3. Cases involving the constitutionality, application or operation of presidential decrees, proclamations, orders,
instructions, ordinances, and other regulations

4. Cases heard by a division when the required majority in the division is not obtained

5. Cases where the Supreme Court modifies or reverses a doctrine or principle of law previously laid down either en
banc or in division

6. Administrative cases involving the discipline or dismissal of judges of lower courts

7. Election contests for President or Vice-President (When the Supreme Courts sits as the Presidential Electoral
Tribunal)

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RULE IN CASES DECIDED BY THE SUPREME COURT EN BANC OR DIVISIONS


‣ RULE — In cases or matters to be decided or resolved by the Supreme Court en banc or divisions, the following
rules must be observed —
1. The conclusions of the Supreme Court in any case submitted to it for decision en banc or in division shall be reached
in consultation

2. The case will then be assigned to a Member (of the division or the en banc) for the writing of the opinion of the Court.

3. A certification to such effect (reach in consultation and assigned to a justice for writing) signed by the Chief Justice
shall be issued and a copy thereof attached to the record of the case and served upon the parties.

‣ BERNAS — The certification will not identify the Justice to whom the case is assigned for writing

‣ What is the effect of absence of certification?


‣ The absence of the certification would not necessarily mean that the case submitted for decision had not been
reached in consultation before being assigned to one member for the writing of the opinion of the Court since
the regular performance of duty is presumed. The lack of certification at the end of the decision would only
serve as evidence of failure to observe certification requirement and may be basis for holding the official
responsible for the omission to account therefor. Such absence of certification would not have the effect of
invalidating the decision. (Consing vs CA 1989)

4. Any Members who took no part, or dissented, or abstained from a decision or resolution, must state the reason
therefor.

‣ BERNAS — The reason for the required explanation to be given by individual Justices for their non-participation or
abstention is to encourage participation.

5. No decision shall be rendered by any court without expressing therein clearly and distinctly the facts and the law on
which it is based.

6. No petition for review or motion for reconsideration of a decision of the court shall be refused due course or denied
without stating the legal basis therefor.

7. All cases or matters filed must be decided or resolved within the following time periods—

a. Supreme Court — within 24 months from date of submission for the Supreme Court

b. Lower Collegiate Courts — 12 months from date of submission

c. Other Lower Courts — 3 months from date of submission

‣ BUT NOTE — The three (3) month period for deciding cases, not the twelve (12) month period given to appellate
courts, applies to the Sandiganbayan because the Sandiganbayan is a trial court. (Re: Problem of Delays before
the Sandiganbayan 2001)
8. A case or matter shall be deemed submitted for decision or resolution upon the filing of the last pleading, brief, or
memorandum required by the Rules of Court or by the court itself.

9. Upon the expiration of the corresponding period, a certification to this effect signed by the Chief Justice or the
presiding judge shall forthwith be issued and a copy thereof attached to the record of the case or matter, and served
upon the parties. The certification shall state why a decision or resolution has not been rendered or issued within said
period.

10. Despite the expiration of the applicable mandatory period, the court, without prejudice to such responsibility as may
have been incurred in consequence thereof, shall decide or resolve the case or matter submitted thereto for
determination, without further delay.

‣ What effect does the lapse of the reglamentary period have on cases filed after the effectivity of this
Constitution?
‣ BERNAS — The case remains undecided, but the court is enjoined to decide the case without further delay.

‣ BUT — It can be a ground for impeachment or other form of disciplinary action on the Justices or Judges concerned if
it is found to constitute culpable violation of the Constitution. There is a growing number of cases where the Court has
disciplined judges of lower courts for their failure to comply with the prescribed deadlines. The Code of Judicial
Conduct requires judges to decide cases and matters pending before them within the period fixed by law...Their
failure to do so constitutes gross inefficiency and warrants administrative sanctions... A heavy case load and a poor
health may partially excuse such lapses, only if the judges concerned request reasonable extensions...In the present
case, however, the respondent made no effort to inform this Court of his reasons for the delay, much less to request
any extension... Worse, he signed certifications that all cases and motions pending before him had been attended to
within the prescribed period. (Court Administrator v. Quinanola 1999)

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‣ Are decisions of a division of the Supreme Court appealable to the en banc?


‣ NO. The decisions or resolutions of a division of the court, when concurred in by a majority of its members who
actually took part in the deliberations on the issues in a case and voted thereon is a decision or resolution of the
Supreme Court itself. The Supreme Court sitting en banc is not an appellate court vis-a-vis its Divisions, and it
exercises no appellate jurisdiction over the latter. Each division of the Court is considered not a body inferior to the
Court en banc, and sits veritably as the Court en banc itself. The only constraint is that any doctrine or principle of law
laid down by the Court, either rendered en banc or in division, may be overturned or reversed only by the Court sitting
en banc. (Firestone Ceramics vs CA 2000)

HOW MANY VOTES ARE NEEDED FOR SUPREME COURT DECISIONS AND RESOLUTIONS?
1. Cases heard by the Supreme Court en banc — Majority of the quorum present in the deliberations

‣ These are decided with the concurrence of a majority of the Members who actually took part in the deliberations on
the issues in the case and voted thereon Majority of the quorum

‣ Since a quorum of the Supreme Court is eight, the votes of at least five are needed and are enough

‣ BERNAS — This is a liberalization of the old rule which required a qualified majority of a definite number. Moreover,
those who did not take part in the deliberation do not have the right to vote.

2. Cases heard by the Supreme Court division — Majority of the quorum present in the deliberations, BUT there
must be a concurrence of at least 3 members
‣ They should also be decided or resolved with the concurrence of a majority of the Members who actually took part in
the deliberations on the issues in the case and voted thereon

‣ The case or matter must be decided by at least the concurrence of three of such MembersWhen the required number
is not obtained, the case shall be decided en banc
‣ NOTE — This rule only applies in “cases” before the decisions, NOT “matters”.
‣ “Cases” — refer to controversies brought to the Court for the first time. These are “decided”

‣ “Matters” — mainly refer to motions for reconsideration. These are “resolved”. If a motion for reconsideration fails
to obtain at least 3 votes of the decision, the “matter” will NOT be referred to the en banc, it is deemed denied.

‣ SEE — Fortich v. Corona, G.R. No. 131457, August 19,1999


‣ A careful reading of the above constitutional provision reveals the intention of the framers to draw a distinction
between cases, on the one hand, and matters, on the other hand, such that cases are 'decided' while matters,
which include motions, are 'resolved.' Otherwise put, the word 'decided' must refer to 'cases;' while the word
'resolved' must refer to 'matters," applying the rule of reddendo singula singulis. This is true not only in the
interpretation of the above-quoted Article VIII, Section 4(3), but also of the other provisions of the Constitution
where these words appear.

‣ "Cases" are controversies brought to the Court for the first time. Where the required number of votes is not
obtained, there is no decision. The only way to dispose of the case then is to refer it to the Court en banc. On
the other hand, if a case has already been decided by the division and the losing party files a motion for
reconsideration, the failure of the division to resolve the motion because of a tie in the voting does not leave
the case undecided. Quite plainly, if the voting results in a tie, the motion for reconsideration is lost. The
assailed decision is not reconsidered and must therefore be deemed affirmed.

DOCTRINES OR PRINCIPLES ESTABLISHED BY THE DECISIONS OF THE SUPREME COURT


‣ RULE — NO DOCTRINE OR PRINCIPLE OF LAW LAID DOWN BY THE COURT IN A DECISION RENDERED EN BANC OR IN DIVISION
MAY BE MODIFIED OR REVERSED

‣ What is the Doctrine of Stare Decisis?


‣ The “doctrine of stare decisis” means that when the Court has once laid down a principle of law as applicable to a
certain state of facts, it will adhere to that principle and apply it to all future cases where the facts are substantially
the same. (Government vs. Jalandoni)

‣ The doctrine of stare decisis enjoins adherence to judicial precedents. The doctrine is based on the principle that
once a question of law has been examined and decided, it should be deemed settled and closed to further
argument.

‣ Only decisions of the Supreme Court establish jurisprudence or doctrine in this jurisdiction. Hence, only decisions
of the Supreme Court are considered in the application of the doctrine of stare decisis.

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‣ EXCEPT — ONLY THE SUPREME COURT SITTING EN BANC MAY MODIFY OR REVERSE A DOCTRINE OR PRINCIPLE OF LAW
PREVIOUSLY LAID DOWN EITHER EN BANC OR IN DIVISION

‣ The Supreme Court, being supreme, is allowed to make mistakes, it can reverse itself and is not bound by its now
decisions.

‣ NOTE — This pertains to “doctrines or principles of law” and NOT cases. Thus, the divisions of the Supreme Court
may reverse its decisions through MR as long as no established doctrine or principle of law is reversed.

DISCLOSURE OF OPERATIONS AND ACTIVITIES

Section 16. The Supreme Court shall, within thirty days from the opening of each regular session of the Congress, submit
to the President and the Congress an annual report on the operations and activities of the Judiciary.

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ARTICLE 9 — CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSIONS
ARTICLE 9 — CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSIONS

ARTICLE 9(A) — COMMON PROVISIONS

THE CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSIONS

Section 1. The Constitutional Commissions, which shall be independent, are the Civil Service Commission, the
Commission on Elections, and the Commission on Audit.

Section 8. Each Commission shall perform such other functions as may be provided by law.

INDEPENDENT CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSIONS


1. Civil Service Commission (CSC)

2. Commission on Elections (COMELEC)

3. Commission on Audit (COA)

‣ BERNAS — These three commissions perform key functions in the government. In order to protect their integrity, they
have been made constitutional bodies.

SAFEGUARDS THAT GUARANTEE THE INDEPENDENCE OF THE CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSIONS


1. Each commission is equally pre-eminent in their respective spheres. Neither one may claim dominance over the others.
(CSC vs Pobre 2004)

2. They are constitutionally created and may not be abolished by statute.

3. Each is expressly described as “independent”.

4. Each is conferred certain powers and functions which cannot be reduced by statute.

5. The chairmen and members cannot be removed except by impeachment. (Art. 11, Sec. 2)

6. The chairmen and members may not be reappointed or appointed in an acting or temporary capacity. (Art. 9[B,C,D], Sec.
1, Par. 2)
7. The Commissions enjoy fiscal autonomy and automatic release of funds. (Art. 9A, Sec. 5)
8. The Commissions amy appoint their own officials and employees in accordance with the Civil Service Law. (Art. 9A, Sec.
4)
9. The salaries of the chairman and members are relatively high and may not be decreased during continuance in office.

10. Each Commission may promulgate its own procedural rules, provided they do not diminish, increase or modify
substantive rights (though subject to disapproval by the Supreme Court)

11. The Chairmen and members are subject to certain disqualifications calculated to strengthen their integrity.

DISQUALIFICATIONS AND PROHIBITIONS ON MEMBERS OF THE CONSTITUTIONAL


COMMISSIONS

Section 2. No member of a Constitutional Commission shall, during his tenure, hold any other office or employment.
Neither shall he engage in the practice of any profession or in the active management or control of any business which, in
any way, may be affected by the functions of his office, nor shall he be financially interested, directly or indirectly, in any
contract with, or in any franchise or privilege granted by the Government, any of its subdivisions, agencies, or
instrumentalities, including government-owned or controlled corporations or their subsidiaries.

ARTICLE 11 — ACCOUNTABILITY OF PUBLIC OFFICERS

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Section 16. No loan, guaranty, or other form of financial accommodation for any business purpose may be granted,
directly or indirectly, by any government-owned or controlled bank or financial institution to the President, the Vice-
President, the Members of the Cabinet, the Congress, the Supreme Court, and the Constitutional Commissions, the
Ombudsman, or to any firm or entity in which they have controlling interest, during their tenure.

‣ RULE — MEMBERS OF THE CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSIONS, DURING TENURE, ARE PROHIBITED FROM —
1. Holding any other office or employment.

2. Engaging in the practice of any profession or in the active management or control of any business which, in any way,
may be affected by the functions of his office

3. Being financially interested, directly or indirectly, in any contract with, or in any franchise or privilege granted by the
Government, any of its subdivisions, agencies, or instrumentalities, including government-owned or controlled
corporations or their subsidiaries

FISCAL AUTONOMY OF THE CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSIONS

Section. 3. The salary of the Chairman and the Commissioners shall be fixed by law and shall not be decreased during
their tenure.

Section 5. The Commission shall enjoy fiscal autonomy. Their approved annual appropriations shall be automatically and
regularly released.

‣ May the DBM implement a “no report, no release” policy against bodies with enjoying fiscal autonomy, whereby
allocations for agencies are withheld pending their submission of the documents?
‣ NO. It violates their grant of fiscal autonomy and violates the rule on automatic release of appropriations

‣ SEE — CSC vs DBM, G.R. No. 158791, July 22, 2005


‣ The “no report, no release policy” may not be validly enforced against offices vested with fiscal autonomy is not
disputed. Indeed, such policy cannot be enforced against offices possessing fiscal autonomy without violating
Article IX (A), Section 5 of the Constitution. Being automatic, thus, connotes something mechanical, spontaneous
and perfunctory. As such the Constitutional Commissions are not required to perform any act to receive the just
share accruing to them from the national coffers. No condition to fund releases to it may be imposed.

‣ Furthermore, the Constitution grants the enjoyment of fiscal autonomy only to the Judiciary, the Constitutional
Commissions of which petitioner is one, and the Ombudsman. To hold that petitioner may be subjected to
withholding or reduction of funds in the event of a revenue shortfall would, to that extent, place petitioner and the
other entities vested with fiscal autonomy on equal footing with all others which are not granted the same
autonomy, thereby reducing to naught the distinction established by the Constitution.

‣ The agencies which the Constitution has vested with fiscal autonomy should thus be given priority in the release of
their approved appropriations over all other agencies not similarly vested when there is a revenue shortfall.

APPOINTMENT OF OFFICIALS BY THE CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSIONS

Section 4. The Constitutional Commissions shall appoint their officials and employees in accordance with law.

‣ There are independent offices specifically authorized by the Constitution to appoint their officials. Does this imply
that their appointment will not be subject to Civil Service Law and Rules?
‣ NO. Since all matters pertaining to appointments are within the realm of expertise to the CSC, all laws, rules and
regulations it issues on appointments must be complied with. (Ombudsman v. Civil service Commission 2005)

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RULE-MAKING POWER OF THE CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSIONS

Section 6. Each Commission en banc may promulgate its own rules concerning pleadings and practice before it or before
any of its offices. Such rules, however, shall not diminish, increase, or modify substantive rights.

ARTICLE 8 — JUDICIAL DEPARTMENT


Section 5. XXXXX (5) Rules of procedure of special courts and quasi-judicial bodies shall remain effective unless
disapproved by the Supreme Court.

RULE-MAKING POWER OF THE CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSIONS


‣ NOTE — The Constitutional Commissions exercise Quasi-Legislative Powers

‣ RULE — EACH COMMISSION EN BANC MAY PROMULGATE ITS OWN RULES CONCERNING PLEADINGS AND PRACTICE BEFORE IT
OR BEFORE ANY OF ITS OFFICES

‣ BUT — such rules cannot diminish, increase, or modify substantive rights.

‣ May the Supreme Court disapprove internal rules promulgated by the Commissions?
‣ BERNAS — NO. The Constitutional Commissions are independent bodies. Hence, the power of the Supreme Court
over rules issued by quasi-judicial bodies found in Article 8, Section 5(5) does NOT apply to them. The Court,
however, in appropriate cases, may exercise “judicial review" over them.

‣ In case of conflict between a rule of procedure promulgated by a Commission and a Rule of Court, which
prevails?
‣ The rule of the Commission should prevail if the proceeding is before a Commission. But if the proceeding is before a
court, the Rule of Court prevails. (Aruelo, Jr. vs CA 1993)
‣ May Congress assume power to review rules promulgated by the Commission?
‣ NO. By vesting itself with the powers to approve, review, amend, and revise the Implementing Rules for The Overseas
Absentee Voting Act of 2003, Congress went beyond the scope of its constitutional authority. Congress trampled
upon the constitutional mandate of independence of the COMELEC. (Macalintal v. Comelec 1993)

RULES IN THE DISPOSITION OF CASES BY THE CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSIONS

Section 7. Each Commission shall decide by a majority vote of all its Members, any case or matter brought before it
within sixty days from the date of its submission for decision or resolution. A case or matter is deemed submitted for
decision or resolution upon the filing of the last pleading, brief, or memorandum required by the rules of the Commission
or by the Commission itself. Unless otherwise provided by this Constitution or by law, any decision, order, or ruling of
each Commission may be brought to the Supreme Court on certiorari by the aggrieved party within thirty days from
receipt of a copy thereof.

RULES OF COURT

RULE 64 — REVIEW OF JUDGMENTS AND FINAL ORDERS OR RESOLUTIONS OF THE COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS
AND THE COMMISSION ON AUDIT
Section 2. Mode of review. — A judgment or final order or resolution of the Commission on Elections and the Commission
on Audit may be brought by the aggrieved party to the Supreme Court on certiorari under Rule 65, except as hereinafter
provided. (n; Bar Matter No. 803, 17 February 1998)

RULE 43 — APPEALS FROM THE COURT OF TAX APPEALS AND QUASI-JUDICIAL AGENCIES TO THE COURT OF
APPEALS
Section 1. Scope. — This Rule shall apply to XXXXXX awards, judgments, final orders or resolutions of or authorized by
any quasi-judicial agency in the exercise of its quasi-judicial functions. Among these agencies are the Civil Service
Commission, XXXXX

RULES IN THE DISPOSITION OF CASES BY THE CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSIONS


‣ NOTE — The Constitutional Commissions exercise Quasi-Judicial Powers

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1. Each Commission shall decide by a majority vote of ALL its Members
‣ Since the Commissions are collegial bodies, the decisions are made by the body and not by individual members of
the body. No individual member may make a decision for the Commission. Much less may cases be decided by
subordinates of the Commission. Not even the Commission's legal counsel may make a decision for the Commission.
(Orocio v. Commission on Audit 1992)
‣ In Cua v. Commission on Elections, the Court had ruled that "the three members who voted to affirm the First Division
constituted a majority of the five members who deliberated and voted thereon en banc and their decision is also valid
under the aforecited constitutional provision." This obviously contradicts Art. 9A, Section 7. The provision of the
Constitution is clear that it should be the majority vote of all its members and not only those who participated and
took part in the deliberations. This Court hereby abandons the doctrine laid down in Cua and holds that the
COMELEC En Banc shall decide a case or matter brought before it by a majority vote of all its members, and NOT
majority of the members who deliberated and voted thereon. (Estrella v. Comelec 2004)

2. Any case or matter brought before it within 60 days from the date of its submission for decision or resolution.
3. A case or matter is deemed submitted for decision or resolution upon the filing of the last pleading, brief, or
memorandum required by the rules of the Commission or by the Commission itself

REMEDIES AGAINST THE DECISIONS OR RESOLUTIONS OF THE CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSIONS


‣ RULE — Any decision, order, or ruling of each Commission may be brought to the Supreme Court on certiorari by the
aggrieved party within 30 days from receipt of a copy thereof

‣ UNLESS — otherwise provided by this Constitution or by law

‣ SEE — The following procedural remedies available to aggrieved parties —

1. Remedy against decisions of the COMELEC and COA — Certiorari under Rule 64 of the Rules of Court

‣ Ground — Grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack of or excess of jurisdiction

‣ Period — Within 30 days from notice (Rule 64, Sec. 3, Rules of Court)

2. Remedy against decisions of the CSC — Appeal by Petition for Review under Rule 43 of the Rules of Court

‣ Ground — questions of fact, of law, or mixed questions of fact and law

‣ Period — Within 15 days from notice (Rule 43, Sec. 4, Rules of Court)
‣ NOTE — Only decisions or resolutions by the Commissions in the exercise of its quasi-judicial powers may be
brought up to the Supreme Court by certiorari, and NOT those administrative matters (which should be brought to
the lower courts)
‣ The only “case” or “matter” referred to by the Constitution that may be brought to the Supreme Court on certiorari are
those that relate to the Commissions in the exercise of adjudicatory or quasi-judicial powers, but NOT its exercise of
administrative powers. (Ambil, Jr. v. Comelec 2000)
‣ The Supreme Court’s power to review COA decisions refers to money matters and not to administrative cases
involving the discipline of its personnel. (Saligumba vs Commission on Audit 1982)
‣ SEE — Filipinas Engineering and Machine Shop vs Ferrer, G.R. No. L-31455 February 28, 1985
‣ The powers vested by the Constitution and the law on the Commission on Elections may either be classified as
those pertaining to its adjudicatory or quasi-judicial functions, or those which are inherently administrative and
sometimes ministerial in character.

‣ In this case, the order of the Commission granting the award to a bidder is not an order rendered in a legal
controversy before it wherein the parties filed their respective pleadings and presented evidence after which the
questioned order was issued; and that this order of the commission was issued pursuant to its authority to enter
into contracts in relation to election purposes. In short, the COMELEC resolution awarding the contract in favor of
Acme was not issued pursuant to its quasi-judicial functions but merely as an incident of its inherent administrative
functions over the conduct of elections, and hence, the said resolution may NOT be deemed as a "final order"
reviewable by certiorari by the Supreme Court. Any question arising from said order may be well taken in an
ordinary civil action before the trial courts.

‣ Only decisions of the Comelec en banc may be brought to the Supreme Court on certiorari (Aguilar v. Comelec 2009)

ARTICLE 9(B) — THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION (CSC)

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COMPOSITION OF THE CSC AND THE QUALIFICATIONS AND APPOINTMENT OF ITS MEMBERS

Section 1.
(1) The civil service shall be administered by the Civil Service Commission composed of a Chairman and two
Commissioners who shall be natural-born citizens of the Philippines and, at the time of their appointment, at least
thirty-five years of age, with proven capacity for public administration, and must not have been candidates for any
elective position in the elections immediately preceding their appointment.
(2) The Chairman and the Commissioners shall be appointed by the President with the consent of the Commission on
Appointments for a term of seven years without reappointment. Of those first appointed, the Chairman shall hold
office for seven years, a Commissioner for five years, and another Commissioner for three years, without
reappointment. Appointment to any vacancy shall be only for the unexpired term of the predecessor. In no case shall
any Member be appointed or designated in a temporary or acting capacity.

‣ What is the Composition of the Civil Service Commission?


‣ 3 members — a Chairman and two Commissioners

‣ What are the qualifications of the members of the Civil Service Commission?
1. Natural-born citizens of the Philippines

2. At least thirty-five years of age at the time of their appointment

3. Possesses proven capacity for public administration

4. Must not have been candidates for any elective position in the elections immediately preceding their appointment

‣ How are members of the Civil Service Commission appointed?


‣ The Chairman and the Commissioners shall be appointed by the President with the consent of the Commission on
Appointments

‣ What is the term of a member of the Civil Service Commission?


‣ 7 years without reappointment

‣ BUT — Observe the following rules —

1. Rule on staggering of terms — of those first appointed, the Chairman shall hold office for seven years, a
Commissioner for five years, and another Commissioner for three years, without reappointment.

2. Appointment to any vacancy shall be only for the unexpired term of the predecessor.

3. In no case shall any Member be appointed or designated in a temporary or acting capacity.

‣ NOTE — The common starting point for appointees to the Commissions is February 2, 1987, the date the 1987
Constitution took effect. This true even if Article XVIII, Section 15 provided for an extension of the tenure of the
incumbents when the Constitution took effect. The extension of the tenure did not affect the term. Thus, in reckoning
the seven year term, the starting point is always a February 2 even if the appointee actually took office after February
2. Through this rotational system the staggering of the terms is preserved. This rule also applies to all three
Commissions.(Gaminde v. Commission on Audit 2000)

POWERS AND FUNCTIONS OF THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION

Section 3. The Civil Service Commission, as the central personnel agency of the Government, shall establish a career
service and adopt measures to promote morale, efficiency, integrity, responsiveness, progressiveness, and courtesy in
the civil service. It shall strengthen the merit and rewards system, integrate all human resources development programs
for all levels and ranks, and institutionalize a management climate conducive to public accountability. It shall submit to
the President and the Congress an annual report on its personnel programs.

ARTICLE 9A — COMMON PROVISIONS


Section 6. Each Commission en banc may promulgate its own rules concerning pleadings and practice before it or before
any of its offices. Such rules, however, shall not diminish, increase, or modify substantive rights.

Section 8. Each Commission shall perform such other functions as may be provided by law.

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EO 292 — REVISED ADMINISTRATIVE CODE OF 1987


TITLE I — CONSTITUTIONAL COMMISSIONS, SUBTITLE A — CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION
Section 12. Powers and Functions. - The Commission shall have the following powers and functions:
(1) Administer and enforce the constitutional and statutory provisions on the merit system for all levels and ranks in the
Civil Service;
(2) Prescribe, amend and enforce rules and regulations for carrying into effect the provisions of the Civil Service Law and
other pertinent laws;
(3) Promulgate policies, standards and guidelines for the Civil Service and adopt plans and programs to promote
economical, efficient and effective personnel administration in the government;
(4) Formulate policies and regulations for the administration, maintenance and implementation of position classification
and compensation and set standards for the establishment, allocation and reallocation of pay scales, classes and
positions;
(5) Render opinion and rulings on all personnel and other Civil Service matters which shall be binding on all heads of
departments, offices and agencies and which may be brought to the Supreme Court on certiorari;
(6) Appoint and discipline its officials and employees in accordance with law and exercise control and supervision over
the activities of the Commission;
(7) Control, supervise and coordinate Civil Service examinations. Any entity or official in government may be called upon
by the Commission to assist in the preparation and conduct of said examinations including security, use of buildings
and facilities as well as personnel and transportation of examination materials which shall be exempt from inspection
regulations;
(8) Prescribe all forms for Civil Service examinations, appointments, reports and such other forms as may be required by
law, rules and regulations:
(9) Declare positions in the Civil Service as may properly be primarily confidential, highly technical or policy determining;
(10)Formulate, administer and evaluate programs relative to the development and retention of qualified and competent
work force in the public service;
(11)Hear and decide administrative cases instituted by or brought before it directly or on appeal, including contested
appointments, and review decisions and actions of its offices and of the agencies attached to it. Officials and
employees who fail to comply with such decisions, orders, or rulings shall be liable for contempt of the Commission.
Its decisions, orders, or rulings shall be final and executory. Such decisions, orders, or rulings may be brought to the
Supreme Court on certiorari by the aggrieved party within thirty (30) days from receipt of a copy thereof;
(12)Issue subpoena and subpoena duces tecum for the production of documents and records pertinent to investigation
and inquiries conducted by it in accordance with its authority conferred by the Constitution and pertinent laws;
(13)Advise the President on all matters involving personnel management in the government service and submit to the
President an annual report on the personnel programs;
(14)Take appropriate action on all appointments and other personnel matters in the Civil Service including extension of
Service beyond retirement age;
(15)Inspect and audit the personnel actions and programs of the departments, agencies, bureaus, offices, local
government units and other instrumentalities of the government including government-owned or controlled
corporations; conduct periodic review of the decisions and actions of offices or officials to whom authority has been
delegated by the Commission as well as the conduct of the officials and the employees in these offices and apply
appropriate sanctions when necessary;
(16)Delegate authority for the performance of any function to departments, agencies and offices where such functions
may be effectively performed;
(17)Administer the retirement program for government officials and employees, and accredit government services and
evaluate qualifications for retirement;
(18)Keep and maintain personnel records of all officials and employees in the Civil Service; and
(19)Perform all functions properly belonging to a central personnel agency and such other functions as may be provided
by law.

POWERS AND FUNCTIONS OF THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION


1. It is the central personnel agency of the Government

2. It shall establish a career service and adopt measures to promote morale, efficiency, integrity, responsiveness,
progressiveness, and courtesy in the civil service.

3. It shall strengthen the merit and rewards system, integrate all human resources development programs for all levels and
ranks, and institutionalize a management climate conducive to public accountability.

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4. It shall submit to the President and the Congress an annual report on its personnel programs.

5. It may promulgate its own rules concerning pleadings and practice before it or before any of its offices. Such rules,
however, shall not diminish, increase, or modify substantive rights. (Art. 9[A], Sec. 6)

6. It shall perform such other functions as may be provided by law. (Art. 9[A], Sec. 8)

NATURE OF THE FUNCTIONS OF CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION


‣ BERNAS — The Commission is an administrative agency, nothing more. As such, it can only perform powers proper to an
administrative agency. It can perform executive powers, quasi-judicial powers, and quasi-legislative or rule-making
powers.

JURISPRUDENCE ON THE POWERS AND FUNCTIONS OF THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION


‣ In the exercise of its powers to implement R.A. 6850 (granting civil service eligibility to employees under provisional or
temporary status who have rendered seven years of efficient service), the Civil Service Commission enjoys wide latitude
of discretion, and may not be compelled by mandamus to issue such eligibility (Torregoza v. Civil Service Commission).
But the Commission cannot validly abolish the Career Executive Service Board (CESB); because the CESB was created
by law, it can only be abolished by the Legislature (Eugenio v. Civil Service Commission 1995)
‣ Under the Administrative Code of 1987, the Civil Service Commission has the power to hear and decide administrative