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POLITICAL LAW

710, series of 1981 (EO 710). EO 710 abolished the old Ministry of
Public Works and the Ministry of Public Highways and transferred
their functions to the newly-created Ministry of Public Works of
Highways.

HOLY SEE v. ROSARIO, G.R. No. 101949, December 1, 1994

MOST REV. PEDRO D. ARIGO, Vicar Apostolic of Puerto


The Lateran Treaty established the statehood of the Vatican City

Princesa D.D. et. al. vs. SCOTT H. SWIFT in his capacity as

for the purpose of assuring to the Holy See absolute and visible

Commander of the U.S. 7th Fleet et.al.

independence and of guaranteeing to it indisputable sovereignty


also in the field of international relations.

G.R. No. 206510, September 16, 2014

In view of the wordings of the Lateran Treaty, it is difficult to

If the acts giving rise to a suit are those of a foreign government

determine whether the statehood is vested in the Holy See or in the

done by its foreign agent, although not necessarily a diplomatic

Vatican City. Some writers even suggested that the treaty created

personage, but acting in his official capacity, the complaint could be

two international persons the Holy See and Vatican City.

barred by the immunity of the foreign sovereign from suit without


its consent. However, a public official may be liable in his personal
private capacity for whatever damage he may have caused by his act
done with malice and in bad faith, or beyond the scope of his

The Vatican City fits into none of the established categories of

authority or jurisdiction.

states, and the attribution to it of sovereignty must be made in a


sense different from that in which it is applied to other states. In a
community of national states, the Vatican City represents an entity
organized not for political but for ecclesiastical purposes and

In this case, the US respondents were sued in their official capacity

international objects. Despite its size and object, the Vatican City

as commanding officers of the US Navy who had control and

has an independent government of its own, with the Pope, who is

supervision over the USS Guardian and its crew. The alleged act or

also head of the Roman Catholic Church, as the Holy See or Head

omission resulting in the unfortunate grounding of the USS

of State, in conformity with its traditions, and the demands of its

Guardian on the TRNP was committed while they were performing

mission in the world. Indeed, the world-wide interests and activities

official military duties. Considering that the satisfaction of a

of the Vatican City are such as to make it in a sense an

judgment against said officials will require remedial actions and

international state.

appropriation of funds by the US government, the suit is deemed to


be one against the US itself. The principle of State immunity
therefore bars the exercise of jurisdiction by this Court over the
persons of respondents Swift, Rice and Robling.

HEIRS OF DIOSDADO M. MENDOZA vs. DPWH, G.R. No.


203834, July 9, 2014

SANTIAGO v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 127325, March 19,1997


We reiterate that the DPWH is an unincorporated government
agency without any separate juridical personality of its own and it
enjoys immunity from suit. The then Ministry of Public Works and
Highways, now DPWH, was created under Executive Order No.

Republic Act No. 6735 provided for the system of initiative and

self-executing provisions, the disregard of which can give rise to a

referendum for local legislation and national statutes, without

cause of action in the courts. They do not embody judicially

providing for initiative for the amendment of the Constitution. A

enforceable constitutional rights but guidelines for legislation.

petition was filed to amend the constitution regarding term limits.


However, the SC held that the constitutional provision on peoples
initiatives under the 1987 Constitution (Article XVII 2) required
implementing legislation to be executory. R.A. 6735 lacked the

MANILA PRINCE HOTEL v. GSIS, G.R. No. 122156,

implementing rules for peoples initiatives and such lack could not

February 3, 1997

be cured by Comelec providing rules. Congress also could not


delegate its legislative authority to Comelec, so Comelec could not
validly promulgate rules on the matter as it was not empowered to
do so under law.

A provision which lays down a general principle, such as those


found in Art. II of the 1987 Constitution, is usually not selfexecuting. But a provision which is complete in itself and becomes
operative without the aid of supplementary or enabling legislation,

LAMBINO v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 174153, October 25, 2006

or that which supplies sufficient rule by means of which the right it


grants may be enjoyed or protected, is self-executing. Thus a
constitutional provision is self-executing if the nature and extent of
the right conferred and the liability imposed are fixed by the

Lambino made a petition to amend the 1987 Constitution via

constitution itself, so that they can be determined by an examination

peoples initiative. However, his petition did not include the full text

and construction of its terms, and there is no language indicating

of the proposed amendments. The SC ruled that the initiative did

that the subject is referred to the legislature for action.

not meet the requirements of the Constitution. An amendment is


directly proposed by the people through initiative upon a petition
only if the people sign a petition that contains the full text of the
proposed amendments. To do otherwise would be deceptive and

OPOSA v. FACTORAN, G.R. No. 101083, February 30, 1993

misleading and would render the initiative void, since there should
be both direct proposal and authorship by the person affixing their
signature to the petition.

Oposa, et al. filed a petition to prevent further logging licenses from


being issued. The Supreme Court, recognizing the intergenerational
equity of the petitioners as the basis of their standing, held that the

TANADA v. ANGARA, G.R. No. 118295, May 2, 1997

right to a balanced and healthful ecology is explicitly provided in


Art. II 16 of the Constitution. While it is found under the
Declaration of Principles and State Policies, not Bill of Rights, but it
is not any less important than any civil and political rights

By its very title, Article II of the Constitution is a declaration of

enumerated in the latter. It concerns nothing less than self-

principles and state policies. The counterpart of this article in the

preservation and self-perpetuation and is assumed to exist from the

1935 Constitution is called the basic political creed of the nation by

inception of mankind. Thus, those provisions are self-executing.

Dean Vicente Sinco. These principles in Article II are not intended


to be self-executing principles ready for enforcement through the
courts. They are used by the judiciary as aids or as guides in the
exercise of its power of judicial review, and by the legislature in its
enactment of laws. As held in the leading case of Kilosbayan,
Incorporated vs.

Morato, the principles and state policies

enumerated in Article II and some sections of Article XII are not

ESTRADA v. ESCRITOR, A.M. No. P-02-1651. August 4, 2003

Considering the American origin of the Philippine religion clauses

interfere in the conduct of preliminary investigations, and to allow

and the intent to adopt the historical background, nature, extent and

the Executive Department, through the Department of Justice,

limitations of the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution when it

exclusively to determine what constitutes sufficient evidence to

was included in the 1935 Bill of Rights, it is not surprising that

establish probable cause for the prosecution of supposed offenders.

nearly all the major Philippine cases involving the religion clauses

By way of exception, however, judicial review may be allowed

turn to U.S. jurisprudence in explaining the nature, extent and

where it is clearly established that the public prosecutor committed

limitations of these clauses. However, a close scrutiny of these cases

grave abuse of discretion, that is, when he has exercised his

would also reveal that while U.S. jurisprudence on religion clauses

discretion in an arbitrary, capricious, whimsical or despotic manner

flows into two main streams of interpretation separation and

by reason of passion or personal hostility, patent and gross enough

benevolent

Philippine

as to amount to an evasion of a positive duty or virtual refusal to

jurisprudence on this subject is for the most part, benevolent

perform a duty enjoined by law. Hence, in matters involving the

neutrality which gives room for accommodation.

exercise of judgment and discretion, mandamus may only be

neutrality

the

well-spring

of

resorted to in order to compel respondent tribunal, corporation,


board, officer or person to take action, but it cannot be used to direct
the manner or the particular way discretion is to be exercised, or to
IMBONG v. OCHOA, G.R. No. 204819, April 8, 2014

compel the retraction or reversal of an action already taken in the


exercise of judgment or discretion.

In case of conflict between the religious beliefs and moral


convictions of individuals, on one hand, and the interest of the

DIMAPORO v. MITRA, G.R. No.96859, October 15, 1991

State, on the other, to provide access and information on


reproductive health products, services, procedures and methods to
enable the people to determine the timing, number and spacing of
the birth of their children, the Court is of the strong view that the

Dimaporo, while serving as Representative of Lanao del Sur, filed a

religious freedom of health providers, whether public or private,

COC for the post of ARMM Governor. He lost the latter election,

should be accorded primacy. Accordingly, a conscientious objector

and despite making known his desire to continue as Representative,

should be exempt from compliance with the mandates of the RH

was not able to return to that office. The Supreme Court did not

Law. If he would be compelled to act contrary to his religious belief

allow him to take office as Representative again. It differentiated a

and conviction, it would be violative of the principle of non-

term, i.e. the period an official may serve as provided for by law

coercion enshrined in the constitutional right to free exercise of

from tenure, i.e. the period that an official actually serves. The

religion.

Constitution protects the term, not the tenure. By filing the


certificate of candidacy, Dimaporo shortened his tenure. Thus, there
is no violation of the Constitution when he was prevented from reassuming his post. A term of office prescribed by the Constitution

DATU ANDAL AMPATUAN JR. v. SEC. LEILA DE LIMA, as

may not be extended or shortened by law, but the period during

Secretary of the Department of Justice, CSP CLARO

which an officer actually serves (tenure) may be affected by

ARELLANO, as Chief State Prosecutor, National Prosecution

circumstances within or beyond the power of the officer.

Service,

and

PANEL

OF

PROSECUTORS

OF

THE

MAGUINDANAO MASSACRE, headed by RSP PETER


MEDALLE, G.R. No. 197291, April 3, 2013
BAGABUYO v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 176970, December 8,
2008
Consistent with the principle of separation of powers enshrined in
the Constitution, the Court deems it a sound judicial policy not to

RA 9371, which provided for apportionment of lone district of City

list seats, and the number of parties with guaranteed seats received

of Cagayan de Oro was assailed on constitutional grounds, on the

in the first round of seat allocation.

ground that it is not re-apportionment legislation but that it involves


the division and conversion of an LGU. The Supreme Court held
that RA 9371 is simply a reapportionment legislation passed in
accordance with the authority granted to Congress under Article VI,

ATONG PAGLAUM, INC., represented by its President, Mr.

section 5(4).

Alan Igot v. COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS, G.R. No.


203766, April 2, 2013

The recognition that national and regional parties, as well as


BANAT v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 179271, July 8, 2009

sectoral parties of professionals, the elderly, women and the youth,


need not be marginalized and underrepresented will allow small
ideology-based and cause-oriented parties who lack well-defined
political constituencies a chance to win seats in the House of

The filling-up of all available party-list seats is not mandatory.

Representatives. On the other hand, limiting to the marginalized

Actual occupancy of the party-list seats depends on the number of

and underrepresented the sectoral parties for labor, peasant,

participants in the party-list election. If only ten parties participated

fisherfolk,

in the 2007 party-list election, then, despite the availability of 54

handicapped, veterans, overseas workers, and other sectors that by

seats, the maximum possible number of occupied party-list seats

their nature are economically at the margins of society, will give the

would only be 30 because of the three-seat cap. In such a case, the

marginalized and underrepresented an opportunity to likewise win

three-seat cap prevents the mandatory allocation of all the 54

seats in the House of Representatives.

urban

poor,

indigenous

cultural

communities,

available seats.

This interpretation will harmonize the 1987 Constitution and R.A.


Under Section 11(b) of R.A. No. 7941, garnering 2% of the total

No. 7941 and will give rise to a multi-party system where those

votes cast guarantees a party one seat. This 2% threshold for the

marginalized and underrepresented, both in economic and

first round of seat allocation does not violate any provision of the

ideological status, will have the opportunity to send their own

1987 Constitution. In the second round allocation of additional

members to the House of Representatives. This interpretation will

seats, there is no minimum vote requirement to obtain a party-list

also make the party-list system honest and transparent, eliminating

seat because the Court has struck down the application of the 2%

the need for relatively well-off party-list representatives to

threshold in the allocation of additional seats. Specifically, the

masquerade as wallowing in poverty, destitution and infirmity,

provision in Section 11(b) of the Party-List Act stating that those

even as they attend sessions in Congress riding in SUVs.

garnering more than two percent (2%) of the votes shall be entitled
to additional seats in the proportion to their total number of votes
can no longer be given any effect. Otherwise, the 20 percent partylist seats in the total membership of the House of Representatives as

The 1987 Constitution and R.A. No. 7941 allow major political

provided in the 1987 Constitution will mathematically be

parties to participate in party-list elections so as to encourage them

impossible to fill up. However, a party-list organization has to

to work assiduously in extending their constituencies to the

obtain a sufficient number of votes to gain a seat in the second

marginalized and underrepresented and to those who lack well-

round of seat allocation. What is deemed a sufficient number of

defined political constituencies. The participation of major political

votes is dependent upon the circumstances of each election, such as

parties in party-list elections must be geared towards the entry, as

the number of participating parties, the number of available party-

members of the House of Representatives, of the marginalized and


underrepresented and those who lack well-defined political

constituencies, giving them a voice in law-making. Thus,to

FLORES V. DRILON, G.R. No. 104732, June 22, 1993

participate in party-list elections, a major political party that fields


candidates in the legislative district elections must organize a
sectoral wing, like a labor, peasant, fisherfolk, urban poor,
professional, women or youth wing, that can register under the

Gordon, an incumbent elective official was, notwithstanding his

party-list system.

ineligibility, being appointed to other government posts, does not


automatically forfeit his elective office nor remove his ineligibility
imposed by the Constitution. On the contrary, since an incumbent
elective official is not eligible to the appointive position, his

REGINA

ONGSIAKO

REYES

v.

COMMISSION

ON

appointment or designation thereto cannot be valid in view of his

ELECTIONS and JOSEPH SOCORRO B. TAN, G.R. No.

disqualification or lack of eligibility. This provision should not be

207264, June 25, 2013

confused with Sec. 13, Art. VI, of the Constitution where (n)o
Senator or Member of the House of Representatives may hold any
other office or employment in the Government . . . during his term
without forfeiting his seat . . . . The difference between the two

Section 17, Article VI of the 1987 Constitution, provides that the

provisions is significant in the sense that incumbent national

House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal has the exclusive

legislators lose their elective posts only after they have been

jurisdiction to be the sole judge of all contests relating to the

appointed to another government office, while other incumbent

election, returns and qualifications of the Members of the House of

elective officials must first resign their posts before they can be

Representatives. To be considered a Member of the House of

appointed, thus running the risk of losing the elective post as well as

Representatives, there must be a concurrence of all of the following

not being appointed to the other post. It is therefore clear that

requisites: (1) a valid proclamation, (2) a proper oath, and (3)

ineligibility is not directly related with forfeiture of office. . . . .

assumption of office. Absent any of the foregoing, the COMELEC

The effect is quite different where it is expressly provided by law

retains jurisdiction over the said contests.

that a person holding one office shall be ineligible to another. Such


a provision is held to incapacitate the incumbent of an office from
accepting or holding a second office (State ex rel. Van Antwerp v
Hogan, 283 Ala. 445, 218 So 2d 258; McWilliams v Neal, 130 Ga
733, 61 SE 721) and to render his election or appointment to the

JIMENEZ v. CABANGBANG, G.R. No. L-15905, August 3,


1966

latter office void (State ex rel. Childs v Sutton, 63 Minn 147, 65


NW 262. Annotation: 40 ALR 945) or voidable (Baskin v State, 107
Okla 272, 232 p 388, 40 ALR 941). Where the constitution, or
statutes declare that persons holding one office shall be ineligible
for election or appointment to another office, either generally or of a

The expression speeches or debates herein in Art. VI 15 (1935

certain kind, the prohibition has been held to incapacitate the

Constitution) only refers to utterances made by Congressmen in the

incumbent of the first office to hold the second so that any attempt

performance of their official functions, such as speeches

to hold the second is void (Ala. State ex rel. Van Antwerp v.

(sponsorship, interpellation, privilege uttered in Committees or to

Hogan, 218 So 2d 258, 283 Ala 445).

Congress in plenary session), statements and votes cast while


Congress is in session, as well as bills introduced in Congress. It
also includes other acts performed by the same either in or out of
Congressional premises while in the official discharge of their duty

AVELINO v. CUENCA, G.R. No. L-2821, March 4, 1949

when they performed the acts. It does not include acts not connected
with the discharge of their office.
As there were 23 senators considered to be in session that time
(including Soto, excluding Confesor), twelve senators constitute a

majority of the Senate of twenty three senators. When the

carried out or implemented by the delegate (2) Law fixes a standard,

Constitution declares that a majority of each House shall

the limits of which are determinate and determinable to which the

constitute a quorum, the House does not mean all the members.

delegate must conform in the performance of his functions.

Even a majority of all the members constitute the House. There is


a difference between a majority of all the members of the House
and a majority of the House, the latter requiring less number than
the first. Therefore an absolute majority (12) of all the members of

GARCILLANO v. HOUSE COMMITTEE ON PUBLIC

the Senate less one (23), constitutes constitutional majority of the

INFORMATION, G.R. No. 170338, December 23, 2008

Senate for the purpose of a quorum. Furthermore, even if the twelve


did not constitute a quorum, they could have ordered the arrest of
one, at least, of the absent members; if one had been so arrested,
there would be no doubt about Quorum then, and Senator Cuenco
would have been elected just the same inasmuch as there would be
eleven for Cuenco, one against and one abstained

It would be an injustice if a citizen is burdened with violating a law


or rule he did not get notice of. It consists of publication either in
the Official Gazette or in a newspaper of general circulation in the
Philippines (Civil Code Art. 2) and the law shall only take effect
15 days after said publication. Publication via the Internet alone is
considered invalid since the provisions state that the rules must be

OSMENA v. PENDATUN, G.R. No. L-17144, October 28, 1960

published in the OG or in a newspaper. According to RA 8792, an


electronic document serves as the functional equivalent of a written
document for evidentiary purposes. Thus, it does not make the
Internet a medium for publishing laws, rules, and regulations. The

Section 15, Article VI of our Constitution provides that for any

rules must also be republished by the Senate after every expiry of

speech or debate in Congress, the Senators or Members of the

the term of 12 Senators as it is a continuing body independent of the

House of Representative shall not be questioned in any other

Senate before it, and its own rules state that they expire after every

place. This section was taken or is a copy of sec. 6, clause 1 of Art.

Senate.

1 of the Constitution of the United States. In that country, the


provision has always been understood to mean that although exempt
from prosecution or civil actions for their words uttered in
Congress, the members of Congress may, nevertheless, be

BENGZON v. SENATE BLUE RIBBON COMMITTEE, G.R.

questioned in Congress itself. Observe that they shall not be

No. 89914, November 20, 1991

questioned in any other place than Congress. Furthermore, the


Rules of the House which petitioner himself has invoked (Rule
XVII, sec. 7), recognize the Houses power to hold a member
responsible for words spoken in debate.

Investigations must be in aid of legislation in accordance with duly


published rules of procedure and must respect the rights of the
persons appearing in or affected by the inquiries. Senator Enriles
privilege speech that prompted the committee investigation

ABAKADA GURO PARTY LIST v. ERMITA, G.R. No. 168056,

contained no suggestion of contemplated legislation, only a call to

September 1, 2005

look into a possible violation of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt


Practices Act. The call seems to fall under the jurisdiction of the
courts rather than the legislature, such as the case filed with the
Sandiganbayan. For the Committee to probe and inquire into the

Congress did not give President the power to exercise discretion in

same justiciable controversy already before the Sandiganbayan

making a law, only the power to ascertain the facts necessary to

would be an encroachment into the exclusive domain of the court.

exercise the law. The criteria for valid delegation are that:(1) Law is
complete in itself, setting forth therein the policy to be executed,

SENATE v. ERMITA, G.R. No. 169777, April 20, 2006

ABAKADA v. PURISIMA, G.R. No. 166715, August 14, 2008

In question hour, attendance is meant to be discretionary. In aid of

Any post-enactment congressional measure such as this should be

legislation, attendance is compulsory. In the absence of a mandatory

limited to scrutiny and investigation. In particular, congressional

question period, it becomes a greater imperative to enforce

oversight must be confined to the following: (1) scrutiny based

Congress right to executive information in the performance of its

primarily on Congress power of appropriation and the budget

legislative function. When Congress exercises its power of inquiry,

hearings conducted in connection with it, its power to ask heads of

department heads can only exempt themselves by a valid claim of

departments to appear before and be heard by either of its Houses

inquiry. The only officials exempt are the President on whom the

on any matter pertaining to their departments and its power of

executive power is vested and members of the Supreme Court on

confirmation and (2) investigation and monitoring of the

whom the judicial power is vested as a collegial body as co-equal

implementation of laws pursuant to the power of Congress to

branches of government. For 1, the requirement for Presidential

conduct inquiries in aid of legislation.

consent is limited only to appearances of department heads in the


question hour but not in inquiries in aid of legislation unless a valid
claim of privilege is made by the President or Executive Secretary.
Any action or step beyond that will undermine the separation of
powers guaranteed by the Constitution. Legislative vetoes fall in
this class.
Although some executive officials hold information covered by
executive privilege, there can be no implied claim of executive
privilege thereby exempting some officials from attending inquiries
in aid of legislation. Congress has a right to know the reasons

Legislative veto is a statutory provision requiring the President or

behind the claim of executive privilege before an official would be

an administrative agency to present the proposed implementing

exempt from the investigation.

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

STANDARD CHARTERED BANK v. SENAE COMMITTEE

committee is in the form of an inward-turning delegation designed

ON

to attach a congressional leash (other than through scrutiny and

BANKS,

FINANCIAL

INSTITUTIONS

AND

CURRENCIES, G.R. No. 167173, December 27, 2007

investigation) to an agency to which Congress has by law initially


delegated broad powers. It radically changes the design or structure
of the Constitutions diagram of power as it entrusts to Congress a
direct role in enforcing, applying or implementing its own laws.

The exercise by Congress or by any of its committees of the power


to punish contempt is based on the principle of self-preservation. As
the branch of the government vested with the legislative power,
independently of the judicial branch, it can assert its authority and

LIDASAN v. COMELEC, G.R. No. L-28089, October 25, 1967

punish contumacious acts against it. Such power is sui generis, as it


attaches not to the discharge of legislative functions per se, but to
the sovereign character of the legislature as one of the three
independent and coordinate branches of government.

The Constitution has 2 limitations for bills: 1) Congress can not


conglomerate under 1 statute heteregeneous subjects, and, 2) The
title of the bill must be couched in language sufficient to notify
legislators and the public of the import of the single title.

Complying with the second directive is imperative since the

national agenda and (b) rejecting the whole PDAF to the detriment

Constitution does not require Congress to read a bills entire text

of all other legislators with legitimate projects.

during deliberations.

BELGICA et al. v. OCHOA JR.; SJS v. DRILON et al.;


NEPOMUCENO v. PRESIDENT AQUINO III, G.R. No.

TAGUIWALO, et. al. vs. Aquino et. al. G.R. No. 209287, July 1,

208566, G.R. No. 208493, G.R. No. 209251, November 19, 2013

2014

The 2013 PDAF Article violates the principle of non-delegability

The DAP did not violate Section 29(1), Art. VI of the Constitution.

since legislators are effectively allowed to individually exercise the

DAP was merely a program by the Executive and is not a fund nor

power of appropriation, which is lodged in Congress. The power to

is it an appropriation. It is a program for prioritizing government

appropriate must be exercised only through legislation, pursuant to

spending. As such, it did not violate the Constitutional provision

Section 29(1), Article VI of the 1987 Constitution. Under the 2013

cited in Section 29(1), Art. VI of the Constitution. In DAP no

PDAF Article, individual legislators are given a personal lump-sum

additional funds were withdrawn from the Treasury otherwise, an

fund from which they are able to dictate (a) how much from such

appropriation made by law would have been required. Funds, which

fund would go to (b) a specific project or beneficiary that they

were already appropriated for by the GAA, were merely being

themselves also determine. Since these two acts comprise the

realigned via the DAP.

exercise of the power of appropriation and given that the 2013


PDAF Article authorizes individual legislators to perform the same,
undoubtedly, said legislators have been conferred the power to
legislate which the Constitution does not, however, allow.

MARIA

CAROLINA

P.

ARAULLO,

CHAIRPERSON,

BAGONG ALYANSANG MAKABAYAN, et al. vs. BENIGNO


SIMEON C. AQUINO III, PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC
OF THE PHILIPPINES, et al.
Under the 2013 PDAF Article, the amount of P24.79 Billion only
appears as a collective allocation limit since the said amount would

G.R. No. 209287, February 3, 2015

be further divided among individual legislators who would then


receive personal lump-sum allocations and could, after the GAA is
passed, effectively appropriate PDAF funds based on their own
discretion. As these intermediate appropriations are made by
legislators only after the GAA is passed and hence, outside of the
law, it means that the actual items of PDAF appropriation would not
have been written into the General Appropriations Bill and thus
effectuated without veto consideration. This kind of lump-sum/postenactment legislative identification budgeting system fosters the
creation of a budget within a budget which subverts the
prescribed procedure of presentment and consequently impairs the

If the Legislature may declare what a law means, or what a specific


portion of the Constitution means, especially after the courts have in
actual case ascertain its meaning by interpretation and applied it in a
decision, this would surely cause confusion and instability in
judicial processes and court decisions. Herein, the Executive has
violated the GAA when it stated that savings as a concept is an
ordinary species of interpretation that calls for legislative, instead of
judicial determination.

Presidents power of item veto. As petitioners aptly point out, the


President is forced to decide between (a) accepting the entire P24.
79 Billion PDAF allocation without knowing the specific projects of
the legislators, which may or may not be consistent with his

Section 25(5), Article VI of the Constitution states: 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

Estrada had constructively resigned, because both elements of

augment any item in the general appropriations law for their

resignation

respective offices from savings in other items of their respective

relinquishment (calling for snap election in which Estrada would

appropriations.

not be a candidate, listening to Pimentels advice for resignation,

were

present,

namely:

1.

Intent

2.

Acts

of

negotiation for peaceful and orderly transfer of power, declaring his


intent to leave without anything about reassuming the presidency,
etc.)
Section 39, Chapter 5, Book VI of the Administrative Code provide:
Section 39. Authority to Use Savings in Appropriations to Cover
Deficits.Except

as

otherwise

provided

in

the

General

Appropriations Act, any savings in the regular appropriations

As for prosecution of cases against him, resignation or retirement is

authorized in the General Appropriations Act for programs and

not a bar to prosecution. Neither was there a pending impeachment

projects of any department, office or agency, may, with the approval

case when he resigned; if this were a bar to a criminal prosecution,

of the President, be used to cover a deficit in any other item of the

then he would be perpetually immune. Finally, Congress has already

regular appropriations: Provided, that the creation of new positions

recognized Arroyo as the new President, and so the decision can no

or increase of salaries shall not be allowed to be funded from

longer be reviewed by the Court.

budgetary savings except when specifically authorized by law:


Provided, further, that whenever authorized positions are transferred
from one program or project to another within the same department,
office or agency, the corresponding amounts appropriated for
personal services are also deemed transferred, without, however
increasing the total outlay for personal services of the department,
office or agency concerned.

On the other hand, Section 39 is evidently in conflict with the plain


text of Section 25(5), Article VI of the Constitution because it
allows the President to approve the use of any savings in the regular
appropriations authorized in the GAA for programs and projects of
any department, office or agency to cover a deficit in any other item
of the regular appropriations. As such, Section 39 violates the
mandate of Section 25(5) because the latter expressly limits the
authority of the President to augment an item in the GAA to only
those in his own Department out of the savings in other items of his
own Departments appropriations. Accordingly, Section 39 cannot
serve as a valid authority to justify cross-border transfers under the
DAP. Augmentations under the DAP which are made by the
Executive within its department shall, however, remain valid so
long as the requisites under Section 25(5) are complied with.

ESTRADA v. DESIERTO, G.R. Nos. 146710-15, March 2, 2001

ATTY. ALICIA RISOS-VIDAL and ALFREDO S. LIM


vs. COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS and JOSEPH EJERCITO
ESTRADA
G.R. No. 206666, January 21, 2015

When the pardon extended to former President Estrada shows that


both the principal penalty of reclusion perpetua and its accessory
penalties are included in the pardon. The first sentence refers to the
executive clemency extended to former President Estrada who was
convicted by the Sandiganbayan of plunder and imposed a penalty
of reclusion perpetua. The latter is the principal penalty pardoned
which relieved him of imprisonment. The sentence that followed,
which states that (h)e is hereby restored to his civil and political
rights, expressly remitted the accessory penalties that attached to
the principal penalty of reclusion perpetua. Hence, from the text of
the pardon that the accessory penalties of civil interdiction and
perpetual absolute disqualification were expressly remitted together
with the principal penalty of reclusion perpetua.

Furthermore, the third preambular clause of the pardon, i.e.,

character of diplomatic negotiations, deliberative process, and

[w]hereas, Joseph Ejercito Estrada has publicly committed to no

presidential communications is similar, if not identical.

longer seek any elective position or office, neither makes the


pardon conditional, nor militate against the conclusion that former
President Estradas rights to suffrage and to seek public elective
office have been restored. A preamble is really not an integral part

MANALO v. SISTOZA, G.R. No. 107369, August 11, 1999

of a law. It is merely an introduction to show its intent or purposes.


It cannot be the origin of rights and obligations. Where the meaning
of a statute is clear and unambiguous, the preamble can neither
expand nor restrict its operation much less prevail over its text.
Hence if the pardon was intended be conditional, it should have
explicitly stated the same in the text of the pardon itself. Since it did
not make an integral part of the decree of pardon, the 3rd
preambular clause cannot be interpreted as a condition to the pardon
extended.

NERI v. SENATE COMMITTEE ON ACCOUNTABILITY,


G.R. No. 180643, September 4, 2008

Conformably, as consistently interpreted and ruled in the leading


case of Sarmiento III vs. Mison, and in the subsequent cases of
Bautista vs. Salonga, Quintos-Deles vs. Constitutional Commission,
and Calderon vs. Carale; under Section 16, Article VII, of the
Constitution, there are four groups of officers of the government to
be appointed by the President:

First, the heads of the executive departments, ambassadors, other


public ministers and consuls, 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;

Executive privilege is not a personal privilege, but one that adheres


to the Office of the President. It exists to protect public interest, not

Second, all other officers of the Government whose appointments


are not otherwise provided for by law;

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 President and his/her advisers in the process of shaping
or forming policies and arriving at decisions in the exercise of the

Third, those whom the President may be authorized by law to


appoint;

functions of the Presidency under the Constitution. The


confidentiality of the Presidents conversations and correspondence
is not unique. It is akin to the confidentiality of judicial

Fourth, officers lower in rank whose appointments the Congress

deliberations. It possesses the same value as the right to privacy of

may by law vest in the President alone.

all citizens and more, because it is dictated by public interest and


the constitutionally ordained separation of governmental powers.
It is well-settled that only presidential appointments belonging to
the first group require the confirmation by the Commission on
AKBAYAN v. AQUINO, G.R. No. 170516, July 16, 2008

Appointments. The appointments of respondent officers who are not


within the first category, need not be confirmed by the Commission
on Appointments.

The diplomatic negotiations privilege bears a close resemblance to


the deliberative process and presidential communications privilege.
It may be readily perceived that the rationale for the confidential

MATIBAG v. BENIPAYO, G.R. No. 149036, April 2, 2002

DENNIS A. B. FUNA vs. THE CHAIRMAN, CIVIL SERVICE


COMMISSION, FRANCISCO T. DUQUE III, EXECUTIVE
An ad interim appointment is a permanent appointment because it

SECRETARY LEANDRO R. MENDOZA, OFFICE OF THE

takes effect immediately and can no longer be withdrawn by the

PRESIDENT, G.R. No. 191672, November 25, 2014

President once the appointee has qualified into office. The fact that
it is subject to confirmation by the Commission on Appointments
does not alter its permanent character. The Constitution itself makes
an ad interim appointment permanent in character by making it

The concerned GOCCs are vested by their respective charters with

effective until disapproved by the Commission on Appointments or

various powers and functions to carry out the purposes for which

until the next adjournment of Congress.

they were created. While powers and functions associated with


appointments, compensation and benefits affect the career
development, employment status, rights, privileges, and welfare of
government officials and employees, the concerned GOCCs are also

PIMENTEL v. ERMITA, G.R. No. 164978, October 13, 2005

tasked to perform other corporate powers and functions that are not
personnel-related. All of these powers and functions, whether
personnel-related or not, are carried out and exercised by the
respective Boards of the concerned GOCCs. Hence, when the CSC

Ad-interim appointments must be distinguished from appointments


in an acting capacity. Both of them are effective upon acceptance.
But ad-interim appointments are extended only during a recess of
Congress, whereas acting appointments may be extended any time

Chairman sits as a member of the governing Boards of the


concerned GOCCs, he may exercise these powers and functions,
which are not anymore derived from his position as CSC Chairman.
Such being the case, the designation of Duque was unconstitutional.

there is a vacancy. Moreover ad-interim appointments are submitted


to the Commission on Appointments for confirmation or rejection;
acting appointments are not submitted to the Commission on
Appointments. Acting appointments are a way of temporarily filling

MARITIME INDUSTRY AUTHORITY vs. COMMISSION ON

important offices but, if abused, they can also be a way of

AUDIT

circumventing the need for confirmation by the Commission on


Appointments.

G.R. No. 185812, January 13, 2015

DENNIS FUNA v. ACTING SECRETARY OF JUSTICE

The Court cannot rule on the validity of the alleged approval by the

ALBERTO C. AGRA, et al., G.R. No. 191644, February 19,

then President Estrada of the grant of additional allowances and

2013

benefits. MIA failed to prove its existence. The alleged approval of


the President was contained in a mere photocopy of the
memorandum The original was not presented during the
proceedings. A copy of the document is not in the Malacaang

The language of Section 13, Art. VII of the Constitution makes no

Records Office.

reference to the nature of the appointment or designation, as such,


the prohibition against dual or multiple offices being held by one
official must be construed as to apply to all appointments or
designations, whether permanent or temporary.

Further, the grant of allowances and benefits amounts to double


compensation proscribed by Art. IX(B), Sec. 8 of the 1987
Constitution.

IBP v. ZAMORA, G.R. No. 141284. August 15, 2000

DE CASTRO v. JBC, G.R. No. 191002, March 17, 2010

Calling out armed forces is discretionary power solely vested in the


Presidents wisdom but the matter may be reviewed by the Court to
see whether or not there was grave abuse of discretion.

Section 4 (3), Article VII requires the regular elections to be held on


the second Monday of May, letting the elections fall on May 8, at
the earliest, or May 14, at the latest. If the regular presidential

SANLAKAS v. REYES, G.R. No. 159085, February 3, 2004

elections are held on May 8, the period of the prohibition is 115


days. If such elections are held on May 14, the period of the
prohibition is 109 days. Either period of the prohibition is longer
than the full mandatory 90-day period to fill the vacancy in the

Actual invasion/rebellion and requirement of public safety are not

Supreme Court. The result is that there are at least 19 occasions

required for calling out the armed forces. Nothing prohibits

(i.e., the difference between the shortest possible period of the ban

President from declaring a state of rebellion; it springs from powers

of 109 days and the 90-day mandatory period for appointments) in

as Chief Executive and Commander-in-Chief. Finally, calling out of

which the outgoing President would be in no position to comply

the armed forces is not the same as a declaration of martial law.

with the constitutional duty to fill up a vacancy in the Supreme


Court. It is safe to assume that the framers of the Constitution could
not have intended such an absurdity. In fact, in their deliberations on
the mandatory period for the appointment of Supreme Court

DAVID v. ARROYO, G.R. No. 171396, May 3, 2006

Justices under Section 4 (1), Article VIII, the framers neither


discussed, nor mentioned, nor referred to the ban against midnight
appointments under Section 15, Article VII, or its effects on the 90day period, or vice versa. They did not need to, because they never
intended Section 15, Article VII to apply to a vacancy in the
Supreme Court, or in any of the lower courts.

Let it be emphasized that while the President alone can declare


a state of national emergency, however, without legislation, he has
no

power to take over privately owned public utility or business

affected with public interest. The President cannot decide whether


exceptional circumstances exist warranting the take over of
privately-owned public utility or business affected with public

GARAFIL v. OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT, G.R. No. 203372,


June 16, 2015

interest. Nor
circumstances

can
have

he

determine

when

such

ceased. Likewise, without

exceptional

legislation, the

President has no power to point out the types of businesses affected


with public interest that should be taken over. In short, the
President has no absolute authority to exercise all the powers of the

Paragraph (b), Section 1 of EO 2 considered as midnight

State under Section 17, Article VII in the absence of an emergency

appointments those appointments to offices that will only be vacant

powers act passed by Congress.

on or after 11 March 2010 even though the appointments are made


prior to 11 March 2010. EO 2 remained faithful to the intent of
Section 15, Article VII of the 1987 Constitution: the outgoing
President is prevented from continuing to rule the country indirectly
after the end of his term.

MARCOS v. MANGLAPUS, G.R. No. 88211, October 27, 1989

Imelda Marcos wanted to return home from Hawaii. Her return was
prevented by Pres. Aquino. She invoked her rights to travel and
Political questions are concerned with issues on the wisdom and not

abode.

legality of a particular measure. Additionally, a political question


has no standards by which its legality or constitutionality could be
determined. A purely justiciable issue implied a given right, legally
The SC upheld the decision to prevent her from returning to the

demandable and enforceable, an act or omission violative of such

Philippines as an exercise of the Presidents residual powers.

right and a remedy granted and sanctioned by law for said breach of

Whatever power inherent in the government that is neither

right.

legislative nor judicial has to be executive. The Presidents residual


power is for protecting peoples general welfare, preserving and
defending the Constitution, protecting the peace, attending to dayto-day problems. Even the Resolution proposed in the House urging

FRANCISCO I. CHAVEZ v. JUDICIAL AND BAR COUNCIL,

the President to allow Marcos to return shows recognition of this

SEN. FRANCIS JOSEPH G. ESCUDERO and REP. NIEL C.

power. Residual powers are implicit in and correlative to the

TUPAS, JR., G.R. No. 202242, April 16, 2013

paramount duty to safeguard and protect general welfare.

A reading of the 1987 Constitution would reveal that several


provisions were indeed adjusted as to be in tune with the shift to

YNOT v. IAC, G.R. No. 74457, March 20, 1987

bicameralism. It is also very clear that the Framers were not keen on
adjusting the provision on congressional representation in the JBC
because it was not in the exercise of its primary function to
This Court has declared that while lower courts should observe a

legislate. In the creation of the JBC, the Framers arrived at a unique

becoming modesty in examining constitutional questions, they are

system by adding to the four (4) regular members, three (3)

nonetheless not prevented from resolving the same whenever

representatives from the major branches of government. In so

warranted, subject only to review by the highest tribunal. We have

providing, the Framers simply gave recognition to the Legislature,

jurisdiction under the Constitution to review, revise, reverse,

not because it was in the interest of a certain constituency, but in

modify or affirm on appeal or certiorari, as the law or rules of court

reverence to it as a major branch of government. Hence, the

may provide, final judgments and orders of lower courts in, among

argument that a senator cannot represent a member of the House of

others, all cases involving the constitutionality of certain measures.

Representatives in the JBC and vice-versa is, thus, misplaced. In the

This simply means that the resolution of such cases may be made in

JBC, any member of Congress, whether from the Senate or the

the first instance by these lower courts.

House of Representatives, is constitutionally empowered to


represent the entire Congress.

MIRANDA v. AGUIRRE, G.R. No. 133064, September 16, 1999


FRANCIS H. JARDELEZA, vs. CHIEF JUSTICE MARIA
LOURDES P. A. SERENO, THE JUDICIAL AND BAR
COUNCIL AND EXECUTIVE SECRETARY PAQUITO N.
A political question connotes a question of policy and referred to

OCHOA, JR., G.R. No. 213181, August 19, 2014

those questions which under the constitution were 1) to be decided


by the people in their sovereign capacity or 2) in regard to which
full

discretionary

authority

had

been

legislative/executive branch of government.

delegated

to

the
a.) Section 2, Rule 10 of JBC-009 provides:

SEC. 2. Votes required when integrity of a qualified applicant is

The Office of the Ombudsman was created by no less than the

challenged. In every case where the integrity of an applicant who

Constitution. It is tasked to exercise disciplinary authority over all

is not otherwise disqualified for nomination is raised or challenged,

elective and appointive officials, save only for impeachable officers.

the affirmative vote of all the Members of the Council must be

The Ombudsman has primary jurisdiction to investigate any act or

obtained for the favorable consideration of his nomination.

omission of a public officer or employee who is under the

A simple reading of the above provision undoubtedly elicits the rule

jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan. The Sandiganbayans jurisdiction

that a higher voting requirement is absolute in cases where the

extends only to public officials occupying positions corresponding

integrity of an applicant is questioned. Simply put, when an

to salary grade 27 and higher. Consequently, any act or omission of

integrity question arises, the voting requirement for his or her

a public officer or employee occupying a salary grade lower than 27

inclusion as a nominee to a judicial post becomes unanimous

is within the concurrent jurisdiction of the Ombudsman and of the

instead of the majority vote required in the preceding

regular courts or other investigative agencies.

section. Considering that JBC-009 employs the term integrity as


an essential qualification for appointment, and its doubtful existence
in a person merits a higher hurdle to surpass, that is, the unanimous
vote of all the members of the JBC, the Court is of the safe

BRILLANTES v. YORAC, G.R. No. 93867, December 18, 1990

conclusion that integrity as used in the rules must be interpreted


uniformly. Hence, Section 2, Rule 10 of JBC-009 envisions only a
situation where an applicants moral fitness is challenged. It follows
then that the unanimity rule only comes into operation when the
moral character of a person is put in issue. It finds no application
where the question is essentially unrelated to an applicants moral
uprightness.

Yorac, as Associate COMELEC Chairman, was appointed by the


President as Chairman of the COMELEC. Brillantes challenged
Yoracs appointment for being contrary to Article IX-C, Sec. 1(2) of
1987 Constitution, where (I)n no case shall any Member (of the
Commission on Elections) be appointed or designated in a
temporary or acting capacity. The SC agreed. The appointment was
unconstitutional. Article IX-A, Sec. 1 provides for the independence

ROMUALDEZ v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 167011, April 30, 2008

of ConCom from the executive department.

The test in determining whether a criminal statute is void for

DAZA v. SINGSON, G.R. No. 86344, December 21, 1989

uncertainty is whether the language conveys a sufficiently definite


warning as to the proscribed conduct when measured by common
understanding and practice. This Court has similarly stressed that
the vagueness doctrine merely requires a reasonable degree of
certainty for the statute to be upheld not absolute precision or
mathematical exactitude.

The Laban ng Demokratikong Pilipino (LDP) was reorganized


resulting in a political realignment in the lower house. LDP also
changed its representation in the Commission on Appointments.
They withdrew the seat occupied by Daza (LDP member) and gave
it to the new LDP member. Thereafter the chamber elected a new set
of representatives in the CoA which consisted of the original

FRANKLlN
OMBUDSMAN

ALEJANDRO

v.

FACT-FINDING

THE

members except Daza who was replaced by Singson. Daza

INTELLIGENCE

questioned such replacement on the ground that the LDPs

OFFICE
AND

OF

BUREAU, represented by Atty. Maria Olivia Elena A. Roxas,


G.R. No. 173121, April 3, 2013

reorganization was not permanent and stable.

The LDP has been existing for more than one year and its members
include the Philippine President, and its internal disagreements are
expected in any political organization in a democracy. The test that

AGAN v. PIATCO, G.R. No. 155001, January 21, 2004

the party must survive a general congressional election was never


laid down in jurisprudence. The Court ruled in favor of the authority
of the House to change its representation in the CoA to reflect at any
time the permanent changes and not merely temporary alliances or
factional

divisions

without

severance

of

loyalties/formal

disaffiliation that may transpire in the political alignments of its


members.

Article XII, Section 17 of the 1987 Constitution provides that in


times of national emergency, when the public interest so requires,
the State may, during the emergency and under reasonable terms
prescribed by it, temporarily take over or direct the operation of any
privately owned public utility or business affected with public
interest.