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Constitutional Law Case Digests

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Constitutional Law Case Digests
ARTICLE 2: DECLARATION OF PRINCIPLES AND STATE POLICIES
Oposa v Factoran Jr. (The right to a balanced ecology)
Facts: Petitioner (representing their generation as well as generations unborn) wants
defendant (Factoran) to 1) cancel all existing timber license agreements in the country and
2) cease and desist from receiving, accepting, processing, renewing or approving new timber
license agreements. Country’s land area should be utilized on the basis of a ration of 54%
forest cover and 46% for agri, residential, industrial, commercial use. Otherwise the
following environmental tragedies will occur: water shortages, change in the salinization of
water, massive erosion, loss of soil fertility, endangering and extinction of country’s flora
and fauna, disturbance and dislocation of cultural communities etc.
Issue: Whether said petitioners have a cause of action to prevent the misappropriation or
impairment of Phil rainforests and arrest the unabated hemorrhage of the country’s vital life
support system and continued rape of Mother Earth?
Held/Ratio: Petition is GRANTED based on Sec 15 and 16 of the 1987 Constitution as well as
E.O 192 which mandates the DENR to be the primary government agency responsible fo the
conservation, management, development and proper use of the country’s environment and
natural resources including forests, grazing lands and mineral resources.
Laguna Lake Development Authority v. Court of Appeals
Facts: LLDA filed a complained against Caloocan City to cease operations of the open
garbage dumpsite. LLDA also found that the city government was maintaining an open
dumpsite without securing an Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC) from the DENR as
required by PD No 1586. The operation was stopped but was resumed in August 1992.
Another Cease and Desist Order was filed by LLDA. On Sept 1992, the Caloocan filed an
action for declaration of nullity of the cease and desist order and argued that they have the
sole authority to promote the health and safety and the protection of their ecology. The
order which was based on the Pollution Control Law was then put up for review by the Court
of Appeals. COA sided with Caloocan and thus promoted LLDA to claim that COA disregarded
the provisions of EO 927 which granted them administrative quasi-judicial functions on
pollution abatement cases.
Issues: Which agency can lawfully exercise jurisdiction over the matter?
Held/Ratio: LLDA. It is a specialized administrative agency specifically mandated under RA
No4850 to promote and accelerate the development and balanced growth of the Laguna
Lake area and the surrounding provinces including Caloocan. Also, the provisions of EO 927
grant LLDA the administrative and quasi-judicial functions on pollution abatement cases.
Garcia v Board of Investments
Facts: Petition to annul and set aside the decision of the Board of Investments approving the
transfer of the site of the petrochemical plant from Bataan to Batangas and the shift of
feedstock for that plant from naphtha only to naphtha and/or lpg.
Issue: Whether or not the foreign investor has the right of final choice of plant site?
Held/Ratio: Petition granted. BOI committed a grave abuse of discretion in approving the
transfer of the plant to Batangas Nothing is shown to justify the transfer to Batangas. Even
more so, Bataan was the original choice by the parties due to its ideal location and that
Bataan produces 60% of naphtha whilst LPG still needs to be imported. Legally, Sec10 ArtXII
of the Constitution states that it is the duty of the State to regulate and exercise authority
over foreign investments within its jurisdiction and in accordance with its goals and
priorities. Same could be implied from Art 2 of the Omnibus Investments Code of 1987.

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Constitutional Law Case Digests
Pamatong v COMELEC
Facts: Petitioner Pamatong seeks to reverse Comelec’s refusal to accept his Certificate of
Candidacy which was rendered in violation of his right to equal access to opportunities for
public service under Sec 26 of the 1987 Consti. Petitioner claims that COmelec erred in
disqualifying him since he possesses all constitutional and legal qualifications for the office
of the president.
Issues: Whether or not petitioner’s reliance on the equal access clause of the Constitution is
misplaced?
Held/Ratio: Yes. There is no constitutional right to run for or hold public office rather it is only
a privilege subject to limitations imposed by law. Sec26 Art 2 neither bestows such right nor
elevates the privilege to the level of an enforceable right. The provisions under the article
are considered not self-executing. It merely specifies a guideline for legislative or executive
action.
ARTICLE VI: LEGISLATIVE DEPARTMENT
Garcia v Comelec
Facts: The Sangguniang Bayan ng Morong in its Pambayang Kapasyahan agreed to the
inclusion of the municipality of Morong as part of the Subic Special Economic Zone.
Petitioners filed a petition to annul Pambayang Kapasyahan.
Issue: Whether Pambayang Kapasyahan is the proper subject of an initiative
Held/Ratio: Petition is granted and the Comelec resolution is annulled and set aside. The
Constitution includes ordinances as well as resolutions as appropriate subjects of a local
initiative (RA 6735)
Eastern Shipping Lines v Philippine Overseas Employment Administration
Facts: Private respondent was awarded the sum of 192k by POEA for the death of her
husband. Petitioner challenged the decision on the ground that the POEA had no jurisdiction
over the case since the husband was not an overseas worker.
Issues: Whether or not POEA has the jurisdiction to cover for the death benefits and burial
expenses?
Held/Ratio: Yes. Based on EO 797 and Memorandum Circular No 2, the POEA is mandated to
protect the rights of overseas Filipino workers to fair and equitable practices.
Tablarin v Gutierrez
Petitioner argues that RA 2382 offends the non delegation principle by failing to establish
the necessary standard to be followed by the delegate – Board of Medical Education.
However, the said standards are already in Sec 1 of the 1959 Medical Act which states: “the
standardization and regulation of medical education.”
Free Telephone Workers Union v Minister of Labor
Empowering the Minister of Labor to assume jurisdiction over labor disputes is not
unconstitutional and does not violate the doctrine of non delegation of legislative power.
Tatad v Secretary of Energy
Petitioners argued that the Executive Branch rewrote the standards set forth in RA No 8180
to hasten the deregulation. They also argued that the Executive has no right to alter the
standards set in the RA in question because it has no power to make laws.

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People v Dacuycuy
Respondents argue that the judicial determination of what Congress intended to be the
duration of the penalty of imprisonment would be against the doctrine of undue delegation
of legislative power. The respondent judge erroneously assumed that since the penalty of
imprisonment has been provided for by the legislature, the court is endowed with discretion
to ascertain the term or period of imprisonment. As such, it was ruled that the penalty of
imprisonment provided in Sec 32 is unconstitutional.
Employers Confederation v. National Wages Commission
Facts: ECOP questioned the validity of a Wage Order of the Regional Tripartite Wages and
Productivity Board, NCR on Wage Rationalization which is in charge of prescribing minimum
wage rates for all workers in various regions.
Issues: Whether or not the Wage Order is valid and does not violate the undue delegation of
legislative power
Held/Ratio: The Court sided with the Commission. Court does not find it unlawful and has
decided that the Commission have set sufficient standards for the Minimum Wage Fixing
Social Justice Society v. Dangerous Drugs Board (Sec 3)
Facts: Pimentel claims that RA 9165 and COMELEC Resolution No. 6486, which requires
candidates for public office to undergo mandatory drug testing, is illegally imposed as an
additional qualification on senatorial candidates. He points out the the only requisites
needed by a senatorial candidate as stated in Sec 3 Art 6 of the Constitution are as follows:
1) citizenship 2) voter registration 3) literacy 4) age and 5) residency
Issues: Whether or not RA 9165 and COMMELEC Resolution 6486 are unconstitutional
Held/Ratio: Unconstitutional. It is a fundamental rule that if a law or an administrative rule
violates any norm of the Constitution, that issuance is null and void and has no effect. In
other words, no acts shall be valid if it conflicts with the Constitution.
Veterans Federation Party v COMELEC
Facts: RA 7941 and the Constitution mandates 4 inviolable parameters regarding the
determination of winners in a Philippine style party-list election. Parameters are: a) 20%
allocation, b) 2% threshold c) 3-seat limit d) proportional representation. Petitioners claim
that Comelec violated these parameters.
Issues:
1. Is the 20% allocation mandatory or merely a ceiling?
2. Are the 2% threshold requirement and the 3 seat limit constitutional?
3. If the answer to Issue2 is in the affirmative, how should the additional seats of a
qualified party be determined?
Held/Ratio:
1. Not mandatory. The Constitution merely states “the party-list representatives shall
constitute 20% of the total number of representatives including those under the
party-list.”
2. Yes. It is consistent with the intent of the framers of the Constitution, the law, and,
even more so, the very essence of “representation” under our so-called republican
state.
3. Arrange from greatest to least votes  relate this to the total number of votes cast 
only those with at least 2% of votes will be considered for additional seats
Party with highest vote becomes benchmark

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Grant first party 3 seats, and the party receiving 6%, additional seats in
proportion to the first party
Additional seats for other parties
Additional seats = no of votes of concerned party/no of votes of first party x first
party additional seats
 Fractional membership cannot be converted into whole because this will deprive
another’s fractional membership and would be a violation of the constitutional
mandate of proportional representation
Ang Bagong Bayani v COMELEC
Facts: Petitioners are challenging Omnibus Resolution No. 3785 (COMELEC) which approved
the participation of 154 organizations and parties in the 2001 party-list elections. Petitioners
seek the disqualification of private respondents, arguing mainly that the party-list system
was intended to benefit the marginalized and underrepresented; not the mainstream
political parties, the non-marginalized or over-represented.
Issues:
1. WON political parties may participate in the party-list elections
2. WON the party-list system is exclusive to marginalized and underrepresented sectors
and organizations
3. WON the COMELEC committed grave abuse of discretion in promulgating above
resolution
Held/Ratio:
1. Yes they can. The Constitution and RA 7941 states that the party-list system is open
to all registered national, regional and sectoral parties or organizations. Private
respondents cannot be disqualified from the elections based on the above grounds.
2(3). Yes. It is exclusive to the unprivileged. It is clear in the Constitution as well as in RA
7941 that the COMELEC should see to it that only those Filipinos who are marginalized
and underrepresented should become members of Congress under the party-list system.
Allowing the non-marginalized and overrepresented to vie for the remaining seats under
the party-list system would prejudice the chance of the underprivileged.
Ang Bagong Bayani OFW Labor Party, et al. v. COMELEC, et al.
Facts: Parties BUHAY, COCOFED, SANLAKAS and PM have already been validly proclaimed by
the Comelec. Before the Court, however, are Motions for proclamation filed by various partylist participants who raised the following question: “Aside from those already validly
proclaimed pursuant to earlier Resolutions of the Court, are thre other party-list candidates
that should be proclaimed winners?
Issues:
1. WON Labo v COMELEC and Grego v COMELEC and related cases should be deemed
applicable to the determination of winners in party-list elections?
2. WON the votes cast for parties/orgs that were subsequently disqualified for having
failed to meet the 8-pt guideline should be deducted from the total votes cast for the
party-list system during said elections?
Held/Ratio:
1. Based on RA 7941 Sec 10 which states that a vote cast for a party, sectoral
organization, or coalition not entitled to be voted shall not be counted, Labo and
Grego cannot be considered.
2. Votes obtained by disqualified party-list candidates are not to be counted in
determining the total votes cast for the party-list system pursuant to RA 7941 Sec 12.

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Banat v. COMELEC
Facts: BANAT assailed the COMELEC’s resolution in National Board of Canvassers (NBC)
which approved the recommendation of Atty. Dalaig (Head of NBC Legal Group) to deny the
petition of BANAT for being moot. BANAT filed Petition to Proclaim Full Number of Party-List
Representatives Provided by the Constitution before the COMELEC.
Issues:
1. WON the method of allocating the seats for elected party-lists is valid and
constitutional? If not, what is applicable?
2. WON major political parties can participate in the party-list elections?
Held/Ratio: Petition is partially granted. Resolution is SET ASIDE.
1. 2% threshold is deemed unconstitutional in the distribution of additional party-list
seats because just as in Veterans, “those garnering more than 2% of votes shall be
entitled to additional seats in proportion to their total number of votes” was
understood to be in proportion to the votes of the first party.
Applicable Steps:
- Find out the guaranteed seats based on the number of those who got at
least 2% of votes
- The remaining (total seats less guaranteed) will be up for grabs
- # of party votes / total votes cast = %
- Allocate remaining seats:
o Remaining seats x % = number of seats to be allocated (USE
WHOLE INTEGER ONLY!)
o Assign 1 seat to each of the parties next in rank (descending order)
until depleted
o Make sure 3 seat limit is maintained
2. Major political parties are disallowed from participating in party-list elections for
obvious reasons.
Tobias v Abalos
Facts: Petitioners assail the constitutionality of RA 7675 (An Act Converting the Municipality
of Mandaluyong into a Highly Urbanized City to be known as the City of Mandaluyong”.
Mandaluyong and San Juan belonge to 1 legislative district. Plebiscite was held regarding the
RA with a 14.41% turnout. 1800+ voted yes while 7000+ voted no and by these results, the
said RA was ratified and in effect.
Issues:
1. One-subject-one-bill Rule (Art 6 Sec 26 of the Consti): “Every bill passed shall only
have 1 subject...” But the RA has 2 subjects namely 1) conversion into a city 2)
division of congressional district of SanJuan/Manda
2. Art 6 Sec 5(1): House of Rep shall be composed of not more than 250 members
3. Art 6 Sec 5(4): Preempt the right of Congress to reapportion legislative districts
Held/Ratio: DISMISSED. Bereft of merit
1. Liberal usage of the One-subject-one-bill Rule (Lidasan v Comelec 21 SCRA 496).
Also, it is in compliance with Art 6 Sec 5(3): “Each city with a population of at least
250,000 shall have at least 1 rep
2. 250 House of Rep member limit is not absolute. There is an “unless otherwise
provided by law” clause
3. It was Congress itself which drafted, deliberated upon and enacted the law in
question.
NOTE: The alleged gerrymandering is also baseless since author Rep Zamora would actually
be diminishing his constituency.

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Constitutional Law Case Digests
Mariano Jr v COMELEC
Facts: Petitions assailing RA 7859 (Municipality of Makati to City of Makati) as
unconstitutional.
Issues:
1. RA did not properly identify the land area/territorial jurisdiction of Makati by metes
and bounds
2. RA attempts to alter/restart the 3 consecutive term limit of local officials in violation
of Sec 8 Art 10, Sec 7 Art 6
3. Violated constitutional provision requiring general reapportionment law to be passed
by Congress within 3 years following the return of census, increase in legislative
district, adding another district in Makati not in accordance with Sec5(3) due to
population is only at 450k
Held/Ratio: DISMISSED. No merit
1. Sec 2, Art 1 of RA in question did delineate the land area
2. Its districts may still be increased since it has met the minimum population
requirement of 250,000.
Montejo v COMELEC
Facts: Petitioner Montejo (Leyte Congressman) pleads for the annulment of Sec 1 of
Resolution 2736 of the COMELEC redistricting municipalities in Leyte on the ground that it
violates the principle of equality of representation.
Issue: WON COMELEC has constitutional power to transfer municipalities from one district to
another
Held/Ratio: Sec 1 of RA 2736 VOID. COMELEC has no authority to transfer municipalities. It
can only adjust number of members.
Bagabuyo v COMELEC
Facts: Petitioner insists that RA 9371 converts and divides the City of CDO as a LGU, and
does not merely provide for the City’s legislative apportionment.
Issue: WON this is possible...
Held/Ratio: Plebiscite must be held. The Constitution and the Local Government Code
expressly require a plebiscite to carry out any creation, division, merger, abolition or
alteration of boundary of a local government unit

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Section 6
Gallego v Verra
Facts: Petitioner Pedro Gallego, hailing from Abuyog, Leyte, registered himself as an elector
and voted in the election for assemblymen in Malaybalay, Bukidnon wherein he has worked
as a government employee until his retirement while his family remained in Abuyog where
he owns real property. COA held that lost his domicile in Abuyog in lieu of Malaybalay and, as
such, his election for mayor of Abuyog was rendered void.
Issues: WON Gallego had been resident of Abuyog for at least 1 year prior to date of
elections in 1940
Held/Ratio: COA judgment REVERSED. Despite being absent from Abuyog for 2 years, he did
not lose contact with his family and townspeople and had no intention of remaining and
residing indefinitely in Malaybalay. More importantly, he was elected mayor with an
overwhelming majority.
Romualdez-Marcos v COMELEC
Facts: Petitioner Imelda Marcos filed for Candidacy for the positi0on of Representative of the
First District of Leyte. Her candidacy was challenged by respondent COMELEC due to the
residency requirement needed for district representative candidates.
Issues: WON Imelda was a resident of the First District of Leyte for a period of 1 year at the
time of the 1995 elections
Held/Ratio: SET ASIDE. During the past 4 decades, petitioner held various residences for
different purposes. None of these purposes unequivocally point to an intention to abandon
her domicile of origin.
Aquino v COMELEC
Facts: Petitioner Aquino is being challenged by COMELEC in his qualification to be a
candidate for Representative of the Second District of Makati. His domicile of origin was
Concepcion, Tarlac
Issues: WON petitioner has qualified for the candidacy of Representative of the 2 nd District of
Makati by fulfilling the residency requirement
Held/Ratio: No. Positive proof of showing an abandonment of domicile under the conditions
above is absent. Also, it was indicated that the sole purpose of residing (evidenced by
petitioner’s lease) in the 2 nd District of Makati was to qualify as a candidate for its
Representative elections.
Domino v COMELEC
Facts: Petitioner Domino challenged respondent COMELEC for declaring the petitioner
disqualified as candidate for the legislative district of Sarangani in the May, 11 1998
elections for not complying with the 1 year residency requirement. Petitioner is said to be a
resident of Ayala Hts, QC wherein he ran for the same position in the 1995 elections. His
motion for reconsideration was denied by COMELEC. As a result, a Petition for Certiorari with
prayer for Preliminary Mandatory Injunction was filed by the petitioner.
Issues: WON Domino complied with the residency requirement of the Constitution to be
qualified to run for representative e of Sarangani province.
Held/Ratio: No. His lease of contract for the Sarangani property does not support his change
of domicile from QC. Though there was physical presence, he did not intend to make it his

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Constitutional Law Case Digests
domicile. This is supported by his lack of intention to abandon his QC residence. More
importantly, he fell short of the 1 year requirement indicated in the Constitution.

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Constitutional Law Case Digests
Co v House Electoral Tribunal (HRET)
Facts: Petitioner asked for decision by HRET which declared Jose Ong Jr. A natural born
Filipino to be set aside and reversed.
Issues: WON Jose Ongchuan Jr. Was indeed a natural born Filipino
Held/Ratio: Yes. Petitioner was already a natural born Filipino citizen by virtue of his
naturalized father and natural born Filipino mother.
Bengzon v Cruz
Facts: Petitioner Bengzon, who lost his re-election for Representative of the 2 nd District of
Pangasinan to respondent Cruz, argues that Cruz did not comply with the natural born
Filipino citizen requirement for representatives due to his tour of duty with the USMC despite
having been repatriated back and reacquired his Filipino citizenship.
Issue: WON respondent, a natural born Filipino who became an American citizen, can still be
considered a natural born Filipino upon his reacquisition of Phil citizenship through the
Commonwealth Act 63
Held/Ratio: Petition dismissed. Repatriation results in the recovery of the original nationality.
In other words, if he was a natural born citizen before he lost his Phil citizenship, he will be
restored to his former status when he is repatriated.
Dissenting Opinion: Petition granted. Sec 2 Article 4 of the Constitution states, “those who
are citizens of the Philippines from birth without having to perform any act to acquire
or perfect their Philippine citizenship.”
Valles v COMELEC
Facts:Petitioner is challenging the citizenship of private respondent Rosalind Lopez, daughter
of a Filipino father and an Australian mother, born in Australia, and requesting that the
respondent must go through the process of repatriation.
Issue: WON respondent Lopez is a citizen of the Philippines
Held/Ratio: She is.
- Despite the respondent’s application for an alien certificate of registration and
carrying an Australian passport, it does not mean that she has renounced her
Phil citizenship.
- Being a dual citizen is not a ground for disqualification for public office. What this
refers to is dual allegiance. Lastly, by virtue of jus sanguinis, Lopez is a citizen of
the Phil due to her Filipino father.
- When she filed her certificate of candidacy for public office, she declared her
support to the Phil Constitution and thereby terminated her Australian
citizenship.
- Lopez executed a Declaration of Renunciation of Australian Citizenship
SEC 7
Dimaporo v Mitra Jr
The term in office cannot be changed but the tenure may be affected by circumstances
within or beyond the power of the said officer. Tenure may be shorter than the term or it may
not exist at all. For instance, when an elective official files a certificate of candidacy for
another office, he is deemed to have voluntarily cut short his tenure, not his term.

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Farinas v Executive Secretary
Facts:Petioners declare as unconstitutional Sec 14 RA 9006 (Fair Election Act) insofar as it
repeals Section 67 of Batas Pambansa Blg 881 (Omnibus Election Code) as it violates Sec 26
Art 6 of the Constitution requiring every law to only have one subject which should be
expressed in its title. The repeal of Sec 67 of the Omnibus Election Code is not embraced in
the title of RA 9006. Petitioners also challenged that said RA violated the Equal Protection
Clause because it gives elective officials undue benefit as against the appointive ones. As
such, petitioners assert that RA 9006 should be null and void in its entirety because of its
irregularities.
Issues:
1. WON
2. WON
3. WON
4. WON

RA 9006 violates the One-Subject-One-Bill Rule?
the repeal of Sec 67 of the Omnibus Election Code is unconstitutional?
RA 9006 violates the equal protection clause?
entire RA 9006 should be nullified?

Held/Ratio: Petition DISMISSED!
1. It does not violate the one-subject rule because it believes that RA 9006 general
subject matter (An Act to Enhance the Holding of Free, Orderly, Honest, Peaceful and
Credible Elections through Fair Election Practices) may contain various provisions so
long as they are not inconsistent with the general subject.
2. No. Even if some legislators believe that the repeal of Sec 67 is bad policy, policy
matters are not the concern of the Court but belonging to the dominion of the
political branches of the government. When the validity of a statute is challenged on
constitutional grounds, the role of the court is to determine whether it transcends
constitutional limitations or the limits of legislative power. No transgression has been
shown in this case.
3. It does not. EPC does not demand absolute equality among residents (ie. elective and
appointive officials), it merely requires that all persons shall be treated alike.
4. The Court is not persuaded by the petitioner’s argument regarding the alleged
irregularities in procedure of passing the of the bill in question because, first and
foremost, it is not the proper forum for the enforcement of internal rules of Congress.
Moreover, the Court cannot inquire into the rules of procedure in Congress especially
when the requisite number of its members has agreed that the bill in question should
be passed.
SEC 8 - Codilla v De Venecia
Facts: Petition for mandamus and quo warranto against respondents De Venecia et al to
compel them to implement the decision of COMELEC by a) administer to petitioner oath of
office and b) register her name in the Roll of Members of the House of Representatives and
against Ma. Victoria Locsin for usurping.
Issue: WON Mandamus should be granted and thereby proclaiming petitioner as
Representative over Locsin
Held/Ratio: Mandamus granted. Codilla garnered 71350 votes v Locsin’s 53447 for the
position of representative of 4th District of Leyte
SEC 9 – Tolentino v COMELEC.
Facts: A seat was vacant in the senate when Sen. Guingona was appointed to VP. Resolution
No. 84 called on COMELEC to fill the vacancy via special election on 14 May 2001 and
Resolution 84 provided that the 13 th placer would serve for the unexpired term of Guingona.
Honasan ranked 13th. Petitioners Tolentino & Mojica sought to enjoin COMELEC from
proclaiming the 13th as the winner of the special election and sought the issuance of a TRO.

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Issues: WON the special election to fill a vacant seat in the Senate was validly held on May
14 2001
Held/Ratio: Dismissed for lack of merit. Election is legally valid. Art VI Sec 9 & RA No. 6645
allows the calling for special elections when a seat in the senate becomes vacant. It also
allows the special election and the general elections be held simultaneously
SEC 11 – People v Jalosjos
Facts: Accused-appellant Jalosjos, member of Congress, was convicted with statutory rape
and acts of lasciviousness. He filed for motion asking that he be allowed to fully discharge
his duties as Congressman including attendance in legislative sessions and hearings.
Issue: WON membership in Congress exempt an accused from statutes and rules which
apply to incarcerated persons in general?
Held/Ratio: Motion denied.
Antonino v Valencia
Facts: The loss of LP candidate Sarmiento to Duterte for the position of Davao governor was
attributed by plaintiff Antonino (senator & LP head in Davao) to the defendant Valencia
(Secretary of Public Works and Communications) because he supported an independent
candidate (Maglana) and thereby dividing the LP votes. Plaintiff made public statements that
were widely quoted in newspapers about Valencia’s alleged disloyalty. Because of this
strained relationship, defendant issued a 2-page press released (Exhibit A) which were
reported on the front pages of 6 metropolitan newspapers. Exhibit A contained certain
allegations regarding Plaintiff such as taking advantage of his position as a Senator and
member of the Monetary Board among others.
Issue: WON Plaintiff has grounds to hold defendant liable for his alleged libellous deeds?
Held/Ratio: Yes. Defendant’s press release attacked plaintiff’s honor, integrity and reputation
and was not covered by qualified privilege given to members of Congress in the exercise of
their duties.
SEC 13 – Liban v Gordon
Facts: Petition to declare Sen Gordon as having forfeited his Senatorial seat..
Issues: WON the office of the Philippine National Red Cross is a government office or an
office in a government-owned or controlled corporation for purposes of the prohibition in Sec
13, Art 6 of the Constitution
Held/Ratio: PNRC is a private organization performing public functions (RA No. 95) The
government doesn’t control the PNRC.
SEC 14 Puyat v De Guzman
Facts: Puyat Group (petitioner) claims that SEC Commissioner De Guzman, with Justice
Fernandez (member of Interim Batasang Pambansa), entered as counsel in SEC Case No.
1747. Fernandez had purchase purchase 10 shares of stock (Php 200.00) of the IPI so he can
qualify to run for election as Director of the company.
Issue: WON Fernandez appeared as counsel, albeit indirectly, before an administrative body
and thus violating the Constitutional provision that no Assemblyman could appear as
counsel before any administrative body (SEC) as indicated in the 1973 Consti

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Held/Ratio: Granted Fernandez leave to intervene in the SEC Case 1747. He acquired the
shares “after the fact” and thus appearing as counsel would be in violation of the
Constitution

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SEC 16 – Avelino v Cuenco
Facts: Senate President Avelino (petitioner) stormed out of the senate session hall with 6
other senators to avoid the ensuing conspiracy by Senator Tanada who was being prevented
to deliver his privilege speech to formulate charges against petitioner. In his absence,
Senate President Pro-Tempore Arranz was unanimously given permission by his colleagues to
continue the session. They finally allowed Tanada to give his speech. By virtue of Resolition
No 67 which was unanimously approved, Senator Cuenco as Acting Senate President to
which he approved and subsequently took the oath. Petitioner assailing the clusterfuck.
Issue:
1. Does the Court have jurisdiction over the matter?
2. If the above answer is yes, were resolutions 68 and 67 validly approved?
Held/Ratio: DISMISSED.
1. No. The selection of the presiding officer remains within the Senators themselves (by
a majority vote) – not with the Court.
2. Supposing the Court has jurisdiction, Resolutions passed were still valid because
there was quorum or the majority required by the Constitution for the transaction of
business of the Senate. (12 Senators)
Santiago v Guingona
Facts: After a 20-2 decision, Senator Fernan was declared Senate President against his
opponent Senator Tatad. Tatad thereafter assumed the position of minority leader. However,
Senator Guingona was recognized as minority leader by Fernan. In lieu of this, Sen. Santiago
and Tatad filed a petition for quo warranto alleging Guingona had usurped the position which
rightfully belonged to Tatad.
Issue:
1. Does the court have jurisdiction?
2. As there a violation of the Constitution?
3. Do the allegations against Guingona have merit? Did Fernan ac with grave abuse of
discretion in recognizing Guingona as minority leader?
Held/Ratio: DISMISSED
1. Yes. Court has the power to inquire whether the Senate committed violation of the
Constitution or gravely abuse their discretion on the exercise of their functions.
2. No. Nowhere in the Constitution does it state the means of how a minority leader is
elected (Only Senate president and House Speaker). As such, Court must leave such
to the jurisdiction of Congress by virtue of the separation of powers.
3. Since the position of minority leader has not been laid down by the Constitution, no
way can it be said that there was illegality in Guingona’s assumption to the position
as well as Fernan’s recognition of the latter.
Arroyo v De Venecia
Facts: RA 8240 (Sin Taxes) was passed and signed both Speaker and Senate President and
was subsequently certified by the secretaries of both Houses of Congress. Bill was signed
into law by FVR. Petitioner claims that RA 8240 is null and void because it was passed in
violation of the rules of the House which is mandated in the Constitution that each House
may determine the rules of its proceedings. Petitioner contends that De Venecia’s
certification that the law was properly passed was false. Specifically, the House did not call
for yeas or nays, ignored Arroyo’s objection and the session was hastily adjourned to prevent
Arroyo from objecting.
Issue: WON Congress committed grave abuse of discretion in enacting RA 8240?

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Constitutional Law Case Digests
Held/Ratio: NO. DISMISSED. Courts have no jurisdiction over internal rules of procedure
unless private rights are involved. Also, the call for yeas and nays does not have to happen
every time a vote is cast but only on the last or 3 rd reading at the request of 1/5 of the
members present. Last, they suspended session to settle dispute.
Osmena v Pendatun
Facts: In Osmena’s privilege speech, he imputed against the President charges of bribery. As
a result, Resolution No 59 was passed saying that he will be suspended for 15 months for
disorderly behaviour if he fails to provide evidence pertaining to his charges against the
president. Petitioner claims that Resolution 59 violated his parliamentary immunity, that his
words constituted no actionable conduct, and that, after his speech, the House took up other
business which indicated that he shall not be held to answer for his speech.
Issues: WON the Court has jurisdiction over this?
Held/Ratio: DISMISSED. Case at bar deals with internal rules of procedure and is outside the
Court’s jurisdiction.
Paredes v Sandinganbayan
Facts: While governor, Paredes was charged with violations against Anti-Graft Law. He was
eventually elected to Congress. During his 2 nd term, Sandiganbayan imposed a preventive
suspension on him pursuant to the Anti Graft Law.
Held/Ratio: Petitioner’s invocation of Sec 16(3) Art 6 of the Constitution is unavailing as it is
different from the suspension spoken of in Sec 13 of RA 3019 (Anti-Graft Law).  WTF?
United States v Pons
Facts: Act 2381, under which Pons must be punished if found guilty, was being disputed to
have been approved on March 1, 1914 and not February 28, last day of the special session
of Philippine Legistlature. As such, Act must be null and void.
Issue: WON courts can take judicial notice of legislative journals in determining if a bill
became a law or not
Held/Ratio: Yes they can. In fact, in the case at bar, they used the journal to ascertain that,
indeed, Legislature adjourned on Feb 28, 1914 at midnight.
Casco Philippine Chemical Co. v Gimenez(Auditor of Central Bank)
The issue at bar is whether urea and formaldehyde should be exempt by the law from
payment of a margin fee pursuant to RA 2609. However it was expressed by the National
Institute of Science and Technology that urea formaldehyde is the finished product and is
completely different from urea and formaldehyde. It was held that if there was any mistake
in the printing of the bill, no judicial decree is needed rather only an amendment or curative
legislation.
Astorga v Villegas
Facts: RA 4065 (Defining Powers, Rights and Duties of the Vice Mayor of Manila) was signed
by the Pres. However, there were irregularities in the content because what was certified by
the Secretary of the HRep, Speaker, Secretary of the Senate and the Senate Pres was not the
same bill that was originally discussed in Congress. As such, the Pres withdrew his signature
from said RA. Thereupon, Manila Mayor Villegas issued circulars to disregard provisions of
the RA. In response, Manila Vice Mayor Astorga, filed a petition for mandamus for the
respondents to comply with RA 4065.
Issue: WON “enrolled bill” doctrine or the “journal entry” rule should be adhered to in this
jurisdiction

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Constitutional Law Case Digests

Held/Ratio: DENIED. RA 4065 is hereby declared not to have been duly enacted.
It is the approval by Congress and not the signatures of presiding officers that is essential in
determining if a bill has been successfully passed by Congress (enrolled bill). Also, the
journal discloses that the amendments introduced on the floor and approved by the Senate
were not incorporated in the text sent to the President which was signed by him.

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Constitutional Law Case Digests
SEC 17 – Angara v Electoral Commission
History of the creation of the Electoral Commission:
- Act of Congress of July 1, 1902: “the assembly shall be the judge of the elections,
returns and qualifications of its members” taken from the US Constitution
- Act of Congress of August 29, 1916: modified this provision by inserting the word
“sole”... “That the Senate and House of Representatives, respectively, shall be the
sole judges of the elections, returns and qualifications of their elective members.” 
to emphasize the exclusive character of their jurisdiction
- Committee on Constitutional Guarantees (1934) recommended the creation of a
Tribunal empowered to hear protests against election of the legislature and
executive (3 Justices, 6 from the legislature – 3 minority + 3 majority)
- It has evolved since then.
Abbas et al v Senate
Facts: Petitioners filed before the respondent Tribunal against 22 candidates of the LABAN
coalition who were proclaimed senators by COMELEC. Enrile, with the petitioners filed a
Motion for Disqualification of the Senator-Members of the Tribunals on the ground that all of
them were interested parties.
Held/Ratio: Not possible. The proposed mass disqualification would leave the Tribunal no
alternative but to abandon a duty that no other court or body can perform. The Tribunal
should not be prevented from discharging a duty which it alone has the power to perform.
Bondoc v Pineda
Facts:Respondent Pineda (LDP) won against Petitioner (Bondoc - NP) in the 1987 elections for
District Representative of Pampanga by a margin of 3,300 votes. Bondoc contested the
result and filed a case in the HRET. A decision was reached in Oct 1990 and revealed that
Bondoc won over Pineda by 23 votes. The LDP insisted on a recount and the result thereof
revealed that Bondoc won by 107 votes. Cong. Camasura (LDP) voted for Bondoc and thus
caused an uproar which resulted in his expulsion from the LDP by their party leader. Also,
Camsura’s election to the HRET was rescinded by the LDP. Without Camasura’s vote, the
decision lacks the concurrence of 5 members as required by the Rules of the Tribunal and, as
such, can’t be properly promulgated. A petition for certiorari, prohibition and mandamus was
filed by Bondoc against Pineda et al praying that Camasura be reinstated.
Issue: Can the House of Reps interfere with the disposition of an election contest in the HRET
through the ruse of “reorganizing” the representation on the tribunal of the majority party?
Held/Ratio: No. Disloyalty to party is not a valid cause for termination of membership in the
HRET. As such, Camasura is reinstated and the decision that Bondoc is the winner should be
duly promulgated.
Guerrero v COMELEC
Facts: There was a dispute regarding Farinas’ bid for Congress in the 1998 elections. His
Certificate of Candidacy was alleged to not have been filed in time for said election but the
COMELEC still allowed him and dismissed the petition against Farinas. When he assumed
office, petitioner Guerrero filed a petition claiming that COMELEC committed grave abuse of
discretion by failing in its Constitutional duty to uphold and enforce election laws.
Issue: WON it is within COMELEC’s jurisdiction to decide on this matter?
Held/Ratio: DISMISSED
When Farinas was proclaimed winner and subsequently took office, the jurisdiction of HRET
will apply and not COMELEC’s.

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Constitutional Law Case Digests
Garcia et al v HRET
Facts:Petitioners filed a case to disqualify elected Congressman Angping for allegedly
violating the citizenship requirement in the Constitution. In the filing of said case, Petitioners
failed to pay the 5,000 filing fee which led to the dismissal of their case. After which,
petitioners paid the fee and attached a Motion for Reconsideration which was, again, denied.
Petition for certiorari was filed before the HRET.
Issue: WON HRET committed grave abuse of discretion for dismissing the petition for quo
warranto of petitioners and in refusing to reinstate the same even after the fee was paid
Held/Ratio: DISMISSED! The lawyers of the petitioners should have known what the
necessary requirements are for filing the case – a particularly important one at that! They
cannot accuse HRET for grave abuse of discretion by reason of their non-observance.
Pimentel v HRET
Facts: Petitioners are assailing the composition of HRET and CA. They pray that respondents
be ordered to alter, reorganize, reconstitute and reconfigure the composition of HRET and CA
to include party-list representatives in accordance with Sec 17 & 18 Art 6 of the Constitution
and RA 7941.
Issues:
1. WON present composition of HRET violates the Constitutional requirement of
proportional representation because there aren’t any party-list reps present
2. WON the refusal of HRET and CA to include party-list representatives constitutes a
grave abuse of discretion
Held/Ratio: BEREFT OF MERIT. HRET and CA did not violate the Constitution and the Rules of
HRET. Sec 17 Art 6 of the Constitution expressly grants to the House of Reps the prerogative
to choose from among its district and party-list reps in accordance to the constitutional
mandate of proportional representation. As such, no abuse of discretion was done by HRET
and CA.

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Constitutional Law Case Digests
Vinzons-Chato v COMELEC
Facts: Petitioner Chato raised an issue regarding the canvassing of returns and the alleged
invalidity of the respondent Unico’s proclamation. However, Unico has already been
proclaimed and has taken his oath as a member of the House of Reps.
Held/Ratio:DISMISSED. COMELEC has no jurisdiction over protests after candidate has been
proclaimed winner.
Limkaichong v COMELEC
Facts: Winning Negros Oriental Representative candidate Limkaichong (petitioner) was
disqualified by COMELEC before she was proclaimed the winner in the May 14, 2007
elections. May 17, Provincial Board of Canvassers (PBOC) received Joint Resolution of
COMELEC suspending the proclamation of petitioner. Next day, Resolution 8062 was issued
by COMELEC en banc which stated that: not suspending the proclamation of winning
candidates with pending disqualification cases. In compliance with Resolution 8062,
COMELEC proclaimed petitioner as duly elected member of the House.
Issues:
1. Whether PBOC’s proclamation is valid
2. Whether, upon Limkaichong’s proclamation, the HRET, instead of the COMELEC,
should assume jurisdiction over disqualification cases
3. WON COMELEC correctly disqualified petitioner on the ground that she is not a
natural-born Filipino
4. WON the Speaker may be compelled to prohibit petitioner from assuming her duties
as a Member
Held/Ratio:GRANTED
1. Valid. Since the execution of the May 17 Joint Resolution was suspended due to
petitioner’s Motion for Reconsideration, there was no impediment to the valid
proclamation of Limkaichong as winner
2. Yes. The law is clear when it said that once candidate has been proclaimed, taken
oath and assumed office, jurisdiction now lies with HRET.
3. No. This matter should be decided under HRET jurisdiction
4. No. House should honor the validity of petitioner’s proclamation especially since she
received the highest number of votes in the elections. Prohibiting her would
disenfranchise the electorate.
SEC 18 – Daza v Singson
Facts: Petitioner Daza was chosen to represent the LP for the Commission on Appointments
(CA). However, LDP was established and consequently, a number of LP members switched to
LDP thereby leaving the LP with 17 members while LDP had 159. As a result, Daza’s seat
was withdrawn and given to respondent LDP member Luis Singson. Petitioner filed for
prohibition and injunction with preliminary injunction against respondent. He argues that he
can’t be removed from CA because his election thereto was permanent and that LDP is not a
duly registered party.
Issue: WON petitioner’s arguments a) non registration of LDP and b) political stability of LDP
are sufficient to grant petition
Held/Ratio: DISMISSED. On November 23, 1989, COMELEC granted LDP’s position for
registration as a political party. Also, the argument regarding LDP being politically unstable is
bereft of merit. The 159 members of LDP is proof enough of its permanence and stability.
Coseteng v Mitra

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Constitutional Law Case Digests
Facts: Petitioner Nikki Coseteng was the only candidate elected as representative in the
1987 elections from the KAIBA party. She requested from Speaker Mitra to be appointed to
CA and HRET as a representative of her party which was thereby endorsed by 9 other
representatives not belonging to her party.
Held/Ratio: DISMISSED. Not in accordance with proportional representation.
Guingona v Gonzales
Facts: Guingona petitioned to prohibit respondents Sen. Romulo & Tanada from assuming
position in CA and to prohibit ex officio Chairman Gonzales from recognizing and allowing
respondent senators to sit as members thereof. The LDP majority is questioned by the
petitioners because it unduly increased the membership of LDP and LP-PDP-LABAN at the
expense of LAKAS NUCD and NPC.
Issue: WON the election of Sen. ROmula and Tanada to the CA is in accordance with Sec 18
Art VI of the constitution and, if so, did senate commit grave abuse of discretion.
Held/Ratio: GRANTED. The election of the 2 senators violated Sec 18, Art 6. Also, the
membership (12 senators, 12 representatives) is not a mandatory requirement. CA can
operate when quorum is achieved (i.e COMELEC, Supreme Court). Lastly, Senate committed
grave abuse of discretion.
SEC 19, 20, 21 – Bengzon v Senate Blue Ribbon Committee
Facts: The Senate, by way of the Blue Ribbon Committee, was called upon to investigate a
possible violation of the RA 3019 (Anti Graft and Corrupt Practices Act) regarding the sale of
36 corporations owned by Kokoy Romualdez. As a result, the Committee subpoenaed
petitioners to appear before the Committee and testify on what they know. Petitioners
(Bengzon + Baby Lopa) refused by invoking the right of due process. The Court has
jurisdiction over the case at bar as it involves the determination of the scope and extent of
the power of the Committee in accordance with the constitution
Issues: WON the Committee violated Sec 21, Art 6 of the Constitution in their actions against
the petitioners
Held/Ratio: GRANTED. There is already a case intimately similar to this in the
Sandiganbayan. Even more so, the investigation must be, as stated in Sec 21, Art 6 of the
Constitution, “in aid of legislation” and that the “rights of persons appearing or affected by
such inquiries shall be respected.”
Sabio v Gordon
Facts: Petitioner Sabio (PCGG Chairman) was invited by the Sen. Gordon (respondent) to join
a meeting conducted by the Senate Committee on Government Corps and Public Enterprises
and Committee on Public Services to deliberate Senate Res. No. 455 which directed an
inquiry in the losses incurred by the Philippine Overseas Telecom Corp (POTC), Phil
Communications Satellite Corp (PhilCOMSAT), PHILCOMSAT Holdings Corp (PHC). Sabio
declined the invitation 3 times and invoked Sec 4b EO No 1 which limited the power of
legislative inquiry. The Committee thereby ordered Sabio’s arrest and held him in contempt
of Senate. Sabio, then, filed a petition for habeas corpus against the Committee.
Issue: WON Sec 4b EO No 1 was repealed by the 87 Constitution and thereby rendering the
petitioner’s defense valid
Held/Ratio: Sec 4b EO No 1 was held to be repugnant to Sec 21, Art 6 and shall not be
countenanced. Based on jurisprudence (Senate v Ermita), it ruled that “the power of inquiry
is broad enough to cover officials of the executive branch.”

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Constitutional Law Case Digests

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Constitutional Law Case Digests
Standard Chartered Bank v Senate Committee
Facts: In Sen. Enrile’s privilege speech, Standard Chartered Bank was denounced for selling
unregistered foreign securities in violation of RA 8799 (Securities Regulation Code) and
urged the Senate to conduct an inquiry immediately. Petitioner argues that respondent has
no jurisdiction to conduct the inquiry and that the inquiry to be conducted was “in aid of
collection.” For this, petitioner was held in contempt.
Issues: WON the Committee has the power to enjoin SBC in cooperating with their inquiry
Held/Ratio: Yes. SBC was not singled out in this inquiry. In fact, SEC and BSP were also
enjoined by the Senate. The legislative body can only obtain the knowledge and information
needed to base intended legislation by requiring and compelling the disclosure of such
information from those who can supply it. The insistence of the petitioner that it was “in aid
of collection” was a direct challenge against the Senate’s authority and, thus, justifies the
contempt citation.
Senate Blue Ribbon Committee v Judge Majaducon
Facts: Respondent Judge Majaducon was alleged to have committed grave abuse of
discretion when he dismissed the Blue Ribbon Committee’s petition to lift the cease and
desist order filed against them by Atty Flaviano in connection to fund irregularities in the
AFP. Also, respondent judge is also alleged to have erred in convicting petitioner Pimentel et
al of indirect contempt of court when the latter published in The Phil Star information about
the previous case which, for Majaducon, created in the minds of readers the impression that
he violated the Constitution and was guilty of gross ignorance of the rules and procedures.
Issue:
1. WON Majaducon committed grave abuse of discretion when he dismissed the petition
of the Committee
2. WON Majaducon erred in convicting Pimentel et al for indirect contempt of court
Held/Ratio: GRANTED. Reversed decision on the Committee as well as that of Pimentel.
1. Courts have no jurisdiction to restrain Congress from performing its function to
conduct investigations in aid of legislation
2. Yes. Pimentel did not cause the publication in the Phil Star. Also, There was nothing
malicious about his statement regarding Majaducon’s gross ignorance of the rules
and procedures since this always comes up in administrative cases.
SEC 22 – Senate v Ermita
Facts: Petitioner Senate filed for certiorari & prohibition before the Court challenging the
constitutionality of EO 464 (granting head of departments executive privilege) which was
proclaimed after the Senate invited members of the executive to a public hearing about
alleged overpricing and other unlawful provisions of the contract concerning the North Rail
Project.
 EO 464: deprives Congress of the information possessed by executive officials
 Sec 21: power to conduct inquiries in aid of legislation which aims to elicit information
that may be used for legislation
 Sec 22: power to conduct a question hour with the objective of obtaining information
in pursuit of Congress’ oversight function (inquiring how dep heads are implementing
the statutes given to them)
Issues: WON EO 464 contravenes the power of inquiry vested in Congress
Held/Ratio: PARTIALLY GRANTED. EO 464 Sec 1 & 2a are VALID. Sec 2b & 3 are VOID.
 Sec 1: Limited only to appearances during question hour (Sec 22) as opposed to
inquiries in aid of legislation (Sec 21)

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Constitutional Law Case Digests


Sec 2a: Only through the permission of the President can the Department Heads can
appear in Congress
 Sec 2b: Exec privilege is properly invoked in relation to specific categories of
INFORMATION, not PERSONS
 Sec 3: A claim of privilege must be clearly asserted. Implied claims of exec privilege
are not allowed.
Neri v Senate Committee
Facts:Romulo Neri has already testified before the respondent Committees in an 11-hour
proceeding regarding matters on National Broadband Project (NBN) awarded by DOTC to
ZTE. Petitioner disclosed that COMELEC Chair Abalos offered him 200M in exchange for his
approval of the NBN project. He, however, refused to answer questions pertaining to PGMA
by invoking executive privilege. Exec Secretary Ermita wrote respondents a letter for them
to dispense with questions under executive privilege. He did not show up in the succeeding
hearing and was held in contempt. He then explained that he had not shown contemptible
conduct and that he still was willing to cooperate provided that he be given in advance what
he needs to clarify. Such is the nature of this present motion for reconsideration
Issues:
1. WON there is a recognized presumptive presidential communications privilege in our
legal system
2. WON there is factual or legal basis to hold that the communications elicited by the 3
questions (WON PGMA followed up the project? WON she directed him to prioritize it?
WON she directed him to approve it?) are covered by executive privilege
3. WON respondent Committees have shown that the communications elicited by the 3
questions are critical to exercise their functions.
4. WON respondent Committees committed grave abuse of discretion in issuing
contempt order
Held/Ratio:
1. Presidential communications privilege is fundamental to the operation of government
and rooted in the separation of powers under the Constitution.
2. In upholding executive privilege with respect to the 3 questions, it did not in any way
curb the public’s right to information
3. Inquiries by the legislature are not subject to the exacting standards of evidence
essential to arrive at accurate findings in court proceedings.
4. Yes. The subpoena issued to petitioner did not inform him of the questions to be
asked. It merely commanded him to testify on what he knows
SEC 25 – Garcia v Mata
Facts: Petitioner filed for certiorari to review Court of First Instance’s decision which declared
Par 11 of the “Special Provisions of the AFP” of RA No. 1600 (Appropriation Act for the FY 5657) unconstitutional and invalid. Petitioner also argues that his reversion to inactive status
was in violation of the above provision which prohibits the reversion to inactive status of
reserve officers on active duty with at least 10 yrs of accumulated service.
Held/Ratio: DENIED. Court affirmed lower courts’ decisions. It is unconstitutional because a
new and completely unrelated provision was attached to the Appropriation Act.  Said
provision is a RIDER (LOL)
Demetria v Alba
Facts: Petitioner is assailing the constitutionality of Par 1 Sec 44 of PD 1177 or “Budget
Reform Decree of 1977” as it unduly empowers the president to transfer funds within the
government without any limits whatsoever.

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Constitutional Law Case Digests
Held/Ratio: GRANTED. Said provision violates Sec 16(5) of the 73 Constitution (now Sec
25(5) Art 6 of the 87 Constitution) as well as the undue delegation of legislative power.
SEC 26 – Tio v Videogram Regulatory Board
Facts: Petitioner assailing the constitutionality of PD 1987 or “Act Creating the Videogram
Regulatory Board” on the ground that Sec 10 of the decree is not related to the subject
matter in the title as it deals with collection of taxes.
Held/Ratio: BEREFT OF MERIT. It’s not necessary that the title express each and every word
the statute wishes to accomplish. If the parts of the statute are related and not completely
inconsistent and foreign to the general title, it’s all good.
Philippine Judges Association v Prado
Facts: Petitioners (members of the lower courts) are questioning the constitutionality of Sec
35 of RA 7354 implemented by the Philippine Postal Corp on the ff grounds:
1. Title embraces more than 1 subject and does not express its purposes
2. Did not pass required number of readings in both Houses including other
requirements in passing bills
3. Encroaches on the independence of the judiciary
Held/Ratio:
1. If the title fairly indicates the general subject and reasonably covers all the provisions
of the act, there is sufficient compliance with the constitutional requirement. DOES
NOT VIOLATE THE CONSTITUTION!
2. A Conference Committee Report on the Bill was duly approved by both houses of
Congress
3. Violates Sec 1 Art 3 of the 87 Constitution which provides that no person shall be
deprived of the equal protection of the laws
Farinas v Executive Secretary  SEE UNDER SEC 7
Tan v Del Rosario
Facts: Petitioner argues that the enactment of RA 7496 violates the Constitution on the
following grounds:
1. One-subject-one-bill rule
2. Desecrates constitutional requirement that taxation shall be uniform and equitable
3. Violates the equal protection clause
Held/Ratio:
1. Reading the full text of the title renders this argument invalid
2(3). Even prior to RA 7496, the general rule of uniform and equitable taxation is the law
in force.
Tolentino v Secretary of Finance
Facts: Petitioners assailing the constitutionality of RA 7716 (E-VAT Law) which seeks to widen
the tax base of the existing VAT system (levied on the sale, barter, or exchange of goods and
properties and on the exchange/sale of services; equivalent of 10% of the gross selling price
or gross value).
Issues:
1. Procedural: Does it violate Art 6, Sec 24 & Art 6 Sec 26(2) of the Constitution? What is
the extent of the power of Conference Committees?
2. Substantive: Does it violate Art 6 Sec 28(1) & (3) of the Constitution?
Held/Ratio: DISMISSED!
1. Art 6 Sec 24 – bill originated from the House of Reps

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Constitutional Law Case Digests
Art 6 Sec 26(2) – President certified the Senate bill as urgent
Conference Committee – It is within their power to include an entirely new provision
not found in the House or Senate bill as long as it is germane to the subject of the
bills of the committee. After all, its report is not final and would need the approval of
both Houses. Which it did.
2. Art 6 Sec 28(1) & (3): Tax burden, according to respondents, is actually distributed to
as many goods & services as possible particularly those within the reach of higherincome groups.
Tobias v Abalos  See Sec 5

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Constitutional Law Case Digests
SEC 27 - Commissioner of Internal Revenue v Court of Tax Appeals
Facts: CTA declared that the caterer’s tax under Sec 191-A of RA 6110 illegal because Sec 42
of House Bill 17839 which carries the said proviso was vetoes y Marcos when it was
submitted to him by Congress (Commissioner of Internal Revenue v Manila Hotel)
Issue: WON the presidential veto referred to the entire section or merely to the imposition of
20% tax on gross receipts of proprietors of restaurants, refreshments, parlors, bars, inside
hotels, motels or rest houses?
Held/Ratio: OVERRULED CTA DECISION. What Marcos intended to veto was not the entire
section but merely the inclusion of hotels, motels and rest houses in the 20% caterer’s tax.
Gonzales v Macaraig
Facts: Petitioner Gonzales (plus members of the Senate Committee on Finance) challenged
the constitutionality of Resolution No. 381 whose Sec 55 & Sec 16 were vetoed by the
president. They sought to enjoin respondents (Macaraig + Cabiet members) from
implementing Res No 381/RA 6688. Sec 55 & 16 were vetoed because it was in violation of
Art 6 Sec 25(5) which allowed the Pres et al to augment items in the General Appropriations
Law.
Issue: WON the veto of Sec 55 & 16 is constitutional
Held: PRESIDENTIAL VETO UPHELD. PETITION DISMISSED.
Although labelled as “provisions”, sec 55 (FY89) & Sec 16 (FY90) are actually “inappropriate
provisions” and should be treated as “items” because they don’t show any connection with a
schedule of expenditures. As such, pursuant to Sec 25(5), they can be vetoed. In the same
vein, they also nullify the authority vested in the President and heads of different branches
to augment items in the GAA.
PHILCONSA v Enriquez
Facts: GAB 1994 was passed by Congress for presidential approval. Pres signed bill into law
(GAA 1994) but vetoed specific provisions which he imposed certain conditions. 4 petitions
were filed challenging the constitutionality of the presidential veto, to wit:
1. Philippine Constitution Association (Philconsa): writ of prohibition
2. 16 senators led by Sen. Pres. Angara, Sen. Gonzales, Sen. Roco: certiorari,
prohibition, mandamus
3. Sen. Romulo & Sen Tanada: prohibition and mandamus
4. Same as 3: with temporary restraining order
Held/Ratio: DISMISSED with exceptions (provisions on debt service, no. 2 of DPWH, no. 12 of
medicines for AFP)
Court dismissed all petitions that challenged the validity of the presidential vetoes that were
vetoed properly. This means that those “inappropriate provisions” and items that were
vetoed were rightly done. On the other hand, those that the Court granted were not properly
vetoed for the reason that the part the president vetoed is intimately connected to the
entire provision. Removing such item would entail removing the provision altogether. (THIS
IS THE BEST I COULD DO.)
Arroyo v De Venecia  see under Sec 16

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Constitutional Law Case Digests
SEC 28 – Gerochi v Dep of Energy
Facts: Petitioners pray that Sec 34 of RA 9136 (Electric Power Industry Reform Act 2001 –
EPIRA), imposing the Universal Charge and Rule 18 of the IRR, be declared unconstitutional.
Also, petitioner prays that a TRO be issued for respondents to refrain from enacting the
Universal Charge (non by-passable charge passed on and collected from all end-users on a
monthly basis by distribution utilities).
Issue: WON Universal Charge under Sec 34 of EPIRA is a form of taxation
Held/Ratio: Sec 34 of EPIRA regarding the Universal Charge is not a tax but a n exercise of
the State’s regulatory and police power.
Garcia v Executive Secretary
Facts: EO 438  5% ad valorem on all imported articles. Then, EO 443  increased to 9% ad
valorem. Then, EO 475  reduced to 5% ad valorem except for crude oil and oil products
(9% still). Then, EO 478  added special duties on top of the 9% ad valorem for crude oil
and oil products. Petitioner filed for certiorari, prohibition and mandamus assailing validity of
EO 475 and 478 claiming they did not originate from the House of Reps (Sec 24)
Held/Ratio: EO 475 & 478 are VALID. Sec 401 of the Tariff and Customs Code delegated to
the President such power to implement changes in the taxing of imported goods as long as it
aims to generate additional public revenue
Systems Plus Computer College v Caloocan City
Facts: Systems Plus Computer College filed for tax exemption to Caloocan City which is
denied because the parcel of land in which the school is situated is owned b Consolidated
Assembly Inc. and Pair Mgt Corp, sister company of the school. Another case is filed saying
that the companies owning the land donated it to the school but was still denied. A
mandamus was then filed by petitioner to respondent city but was again denied for being
premature.
Held/Ratio: School did not exhaust all administrative remedies before going to court. It
should have presented evidence of the donation of the parcel of land before the City
Assessor who would bring it up to the Local Board of Assessment Appeals and Central Board
of Assessment Appeals, if necessary.
Central Mindanao University v Dept of Agrarian Reform
Facts: Petition for certiorari to nullify the Adjudication Board (DARAB) & Court of Appeals’
decision to include CMU’s 400 hectares of land in the CARP.
Held/Ratio: Court reversed decision because, as misinterpreted by DARAB & Court of
Appeals, CMU’s lands are exempt from CARP coverage because such lands are ACTUALLY,
DIRECTLY and EXCLUSIVELY used and have been found necessary for educational purposes.
Commissioner of BIR v Court of Appeals
Facts: Commissioner of Internal Revenue issued a tax assessment to the Young Men’s
Christian Assoc of the Phils (YMCA) to pay property and income tax from the lease of their
property. YMCA contends that, as a charitable and educational institution, they are exempt
from property and income tax. Commissioner filed a petition to Court of Appeals on YMCA.
Held/Ratio: What the framers of the Constitution meant by Sec 28(3) is that only property
would be exempt from tax and not the income. Hence, YMCA has to pay income tax.

JMHRoco

Constitutional Law Case Digests
Commissioner of Internal Revenue v Judge Santos
Facts: RTC Judge Santos decided that certain provisions of the Tariff & Customs Code and the
National Internal Revenue Code are confiscating, oppressive and unconstitutional. As a
result, CIR brought it up to a higher court to review the decision.
Held/Ratio: Santos went beyond the reach of judicial questioning by questioning the
legislators’ reasons why jewelry, a non-essential item, is taxed as it is in our country.
Moreover, using other countries’ tax policies regarding said item as a yardstick to determine
what may be proper policy in our country is unacceptable.
John Hay Peoples Alternative Coalition v Victor Lim
Facts: FVR signed into law RA 7227 (Bases Conversion & Development Act 1992) which
declared 288.1 hectares of Camp John Hay as a potential Special Economic Zone.
Proclamation 420 was issued which was an act formally directed to the creation of a part of
John Hay as a SEZ under the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA).
Petitioners challenge the constitutionality of Proc 420.
Issue: WON Proc 420 is unconstitutional by providing national & local tax exemption to the
John Hay SEZ and WON Proc 420 limits the local autonomy of Baguio City
Held/Ratio: Tax exemption for John Hay SEZ is UNCONSTITUTIONAL because nowhere in RA
7227 does it say that John Hay is exempted. It only mentioned Subic SEZ. Also, Proc 420
does not limit Baguio’s local autonomy. The designation of BCDA as the governing agency of
John Hay EZ is merely an emphasis on the statutory role it has been granted.
SEC 29 – Guingona Jr v Carague
Facts: Petitioner Senators question the constitutionality of PD 81, PD 1177 & PD 1967 which
allowed the automatic appropriation of 86B for debt service in the national budget.
Issue: WON such PD’s violate the Constitution
Held/Ratio: DISMISSED
1. Though higher than the budget allotted for education, the budget for DECS was the
highest among other department budgets. Also, for the survival of the country’s
economy, the budget allocated for debt service is justified.
2. Existing laws inconsistent with the 87 Constitution shall remain operative until
amended, repealed or revoked (Sec 3 Art 13). Legislators’ intent for automatic
appropriation is that the amount needed should be automatically set aside in order
that we may pay any indebtedness incurred.
Osmena v Orbos
Facts: Marcos’ PD 1956 (Oil Price Stabilization Fund – OPSF) sought to reimburse oil
companies cost increases in crude oil and imported petroleum products resulting from
exchange rate adjustments. Petitioner argues that such collections, being a form of special
tax, must be created as a “special fund” and not “trust account” pursuant to Sec 29(3) Art 6
of the Constitution.
Held/Ratio: While funds collected may be referred to as taxes, they are in the exercise of the
State’s police power to lessen the adverse effects of market volatility in the oil industry to
the community. As such, there is no violation of Sec 29(3) of the Constitution.

JMHRoco

Constitutional Law Case Digests
SEC 30 – Fabian v Desierto
Facts: Petitioner filed an administrative case against Agustin (District Engineer) for
harassment before the Ombudsman (herein respondent). Agustin was found guilty but filed a
motion for reconsideration before the same. Because the ombudsman was friends with
Agustin’s counsel, he passed the case to deputy ombudsman Guerrero who exonerated
Agustin from the administrative charges. Petitioner filed for certiorari before the Court to
review the decision.
Held/Ratio: Court cannot review Ombudsman’s decision because it would violate Sec 30 Art
6. It will unduly expand the appellate jurisdiction of the Court without its advice & consent.
Moreover, appellate jurisdiction can only extend to decisions from lower courts in the
integrated judicial system and not quasi-judicial bodies/agencies such as the office of the
respondent.

JMHRoco

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