Constitutional Law 1 - File No. 2
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CONSTITUTIONAL I File No. 2 e. Doctrine of State Immunity from Suit – Article XVI, Sec. 3, CONSTITUTION
Section 3. The State may not be sued without its consent. Gen. Rule Basis : Reason
: The State may not be sued without its consent. Sec. 3, Art. XVI of the Constitution.
: There can be no legal right against the authority which makes the law on which the right depends.
When considered a suit against the State: 1. The Republic is sued by name; 2. Suits against an un – incorporated government agency; 3. Suits is against a government official, but is such that ultimate liability shall devolve on the government: a. b.
When a public officer acts in bad faith, or beyond the scope of his authority, he can be held personally liable for damages. BUT: If he acted pursuant to his official duties, without malice, negligence, or bad faith, he is not personally liable, and the suit is really one against the State.
Application / Prohibition of the rule: 1. This rule applies not only in favor of the Philippines but also in favor of the foreign states. 2. The rule likewise prohibits a person from filing for interpleader, with the State as one of the defendants being compelled to interplead. CASES
The Rice and Corn Administration (RCA) is part of the government being in fact an office under the office of the President and therefore, cannot be sued without the consent of the State. The consent to be effective must come from the State, acting through a duly enacted statute. Thus, whatever counsel for defendant RCA agreed to had no binding force in the government. That was clearly beyond the scope of his authority (Republic vs. Purisima, 78 SCRA 470).
The Bureau of Customs cannot be held liable for actual damages that the private respondent sustained with regard to its goods. To permit private respondent’s claim to prosper would violate the doctrine of sovereign immunity. Since it demands that the Commissioner of Customs be ordered to pay for actual damages it sustained, for which ultimately liability will fall on the government, it is obvious that this case has been converted technically into a suit against the State. The Bureau of Customs, along with the Bureau of Internal Revenue, it is invested with an inherent power of sovereignty, namely, taxation (Farolan vs. CTA, 217 SCRA 298).
It is apparent from the complaint that Bradford was sued in her private or personal capacity for acts allegedly done beyond the scope and even beyond her place of official functions, said complaint is not then vulnerable to a motion to dismiss on the grounds relied upon by the petitioners because as a consequence of the hypothetical admission of the truth of the allegations therein, the case falls within the exception to the doctrine of State immunity (USA vs. Reyes, GR 79233, March 1, 1993).
Feliciano was holding property title to which was evidenced by an informacion posesoria. Proclamation no. 90 of President Magsaysay included it among properties for subdivision and distribution. Feliciano sued the Republic, represented by the Land Authority, to recover possession of the land. The plaintiff has impleaded the Republic as defendant in an action for recovery of ownership and possession of a parcel of land, bringing the State to court just like any private person who is claimed to be usurping a piece of property. The State pleaded immunity from suit. The suit against the State which under settled jurisprudence is not permitted, except upon a showing that the State has consented to be sued. Informacion posesoria had not been shown to have been converted into a record of ownership. It is nothing more than prima facie evidence of possession. Feliciano must pursue to prove title. The consent of the State to be sued must emanate from statutory
authority. Waiver of State Immunity can only be made by an act of legislative body (Republic vs. Feliciano, 148 SCRA 424). •
Forms of Consent
1. Express consent 2. Implied consent i)
1. When he law expressly grants the authority to sue the State or any of its agencies. 2. Examples: a. A law creating a government body expressly providing that such body “may sue or be sued.” b. Art 2180 of the Civil Code, which creates liability against the State when it acts through a special agent. CASES •
Respondent Singson cause of action is a money claim against the government for the payment of the alleged balance of the cost of spare parts supplied by him to the Bureau of Public Highways. Assuming momentarily the validity of such claim, mandamus is not remedy to enforce the collection of such claim against the State, but an ordinary action for specific performance. The suit is against the State which cannot prosper or be entertained by the Court except with the consent of the State. The respondent should have filed his claim with the general auditing office under the provision of comm..act 327 which prescribe the condition under which money claim against the government may be filed (Sayson vs. Singson, 54 SCRA 282).
By consenting to be sued, the State simply waives its immunity from suit. It does not thereby concede its liability to the plaintiff, or create any cause of action in its favor, or extend its liability to any cause not previously recognized. It merely gives remedy to enforce a pre-existing liability and submit itself to the jurisdiction of the court. Subject to its right to interpose any lawful defense. The Government of the Philippines is only liable for the acts of its agents, officers, and employees when they act as special agents. A special agent is one who receives a definite and fix order or
commission, foreign to the exercise of the duties of his office if he is a special official (Meritt vs. Government, 34 Phil 311). •
By engaging in business through the instrumentality of a corporation, the government divests itself of its sovereign character so as to render the corporation subject to the rules governing the private corporations. Garnishment is a proper remedy for a prevailing party to proceed against the funds of a corporate entity even if owned or controlled by the government. It is well settled that when a government enters into commercial business it abandons its sovereign capacity and is to be treated just like any other corporation (PNB vs. CIR, 81 SCRA 314).
Under its charter (RA 1161, Sec. 4K) the SSS can sue and be sued. So, if assuming that the SSS enjoys immunity from suit as an entity performing governmental functions by virtue of the explicit provision of the enabling law, it can be sued. The government must be deemed to have waived immunity in respect of the SSS, although it does not thereby concede its liability (SSS vs. CA, 120 SCRA 707). ii)
1. When the State enters into a private contract. The contract must be entered into by the proper officer and within the scope of his authority. UNLESS: the contract is merely incidental to the performance of a governmental function. 2. When the State enters into a business contract. UNLESS: The operation is incidental to the performance of a governmental function (e.g. arrastre services). Thus, when the State conduct business operations through GOCC, the latter can be generally be sued, even if its charter contains no express “sue or be sued” clause. Jure Gestionis – by right of economic or business relations, may be sued (US v. Guinto, 182 SCRA 6440; Jure Imperii – by right of sovereign power, in the exercise of sovereign functions. No implied consent (US v. Ruiz, 136 SCRA 487); 3. When it is a suit against an incorporated government agency Unincorporated – a. Performs governmental functions: not suable without State consent even is performing proprietary function incidentally.
b. Performs proprietary functions: suable. 4. When the State files suit against a private party UNLESS: the suit is entered into only to resist a claim.. CASES •
When the State files an action, it divests itself of the sovereign character and shed its immunity from suit, descending to the level of an ordinary litigant (RP vs. Sandiganbayan, GR 85384, February 28, 1990).
The claim for damages for the use of property against the intervenor dependant Republic of the Philippines to which it was transferred cannot be maintained because of the immunity of the State from suit. The claim obviously constitutes a charge against, or financial liability to, the Government and consequently cannot be entertained by the courts except with the consent of the government (Lim vs. Brownell, 107 Phil 344).
When the government enters into a commercial transaction, it abandons its sovereign capacity and it is to be treated like any other corporation (Malong Vs. PNR, 138 SCRA 63).
National Irrigation Authority is a government agency vested with corporate personality separate and distinct from the government (Sec .1, RA 3601), thus is governed by the Corporation Law. Under Sec. 2, PD 552 NIA is allowed to collect fees and other charges as maybe necessary to cover the cost of operation, maintenance, and insurance and to recover the cost of construction, etc. NIA may also sue and be sued in court. It is authorized to exercise the powers of a corporation under the Corporation Law, insofar as they are not inconsistent with the provision of NIA charter (Fontanilla Vs. Maliaman, 194 SCRA 486).
The application of the doctrine of immunity from suit has been restricted to sovereign or governmental activities (jure imperii). The mantel of State immunity cannot be extended to commercial, private and proprietary acts (jure gestionis). If the contract was entered into the discharge of its governmental functions, the sovereign State cannot be deemed to have waived its immunity from suit (JUSMAG vs. NLRC, GR 198813, Dec. 15, 1994).
Petitioner filed an action in the CFI of Zamboanga City for the revocation of a Deed of Donation which he had his wife had made to the Bureau of Plant and Industry. He claimed that the donee failed to comply with the condition of the donation. Ordinarily, a suit of this nature cannot prosper. It would, however, be manifestly unfair for the government, as donee, which is alleged to have violated the condition under which it received gratuitously certain property, to invoke its immunity. Since it would be against equity and justice to allow such defense in this case, consent to be sued could be presumed (Santiago vs. Republic, 87 SCRA 294).
When the government takes any property for public use, which is condition upon the payment of just compensation, to be judicially ascertained, it makes manifest that it submits to the jurisdiction of a court. The Court may proceed with the complaint and determine the compensation to which the petitioner are entitle (Ministerio vs. CFI, 40 SCRA 464). iii)
Consent to execution
Consent to be sued does not include consent to the execution of judgment against it. Such execution will require another waiver, because the power of the court ends when the judgment is rendered, since government funds and properties may not be seized under writs of execution or garnishment, unless such disbursement is covered by the corresponding appropriation as required by law (Republic v. Villasor, 54 SCRA 84). Rules Regarding Garnishment or Levy of Government Funds in Government Depository: General Rule: Government funds deposited with PNB or authorized depositories cannot be subject to garnishment. Exceptions: 1. where law or ordinance has already been enacted appropriating a specific amount to pay a valid governmental obligation (Municipality of San Miguel, Bulacan v. Fernandez, GR No. L-61744, June 25, 1984). 2. funds belonging to government corporations which can sue and be sues that are deposited with a bank (PNB v. Pabalan, 83 SCRA 595). Rules Regarding Payment of Interests by Government in Money Judgments Against it:
General Rule: Government cannot be made to pay interests; Exceptions: 1. eminent domain; 2. erroneous collection of taxes; or 3. where government aggress to pay interest pursuant to law. CASES •
When a municipality fails or refuses without justifiable reason to effect payment of a final money judgment rendered against it, the claimant may avail of the remedy of mandamus in order to compel the enactment and approval of the necessary appropriation ordinance and the corresponding disbursement of municipal funds (Municipality of Makati vs. CA, 190 SCRA 206).
The rule is and has always been that all government funds deposited in the PNB or any other official depositary of the Philippine Government by any of its agencies or instrumentalities remain government funds and may not be subject to garnishment or levy, in the absence of a corresponding appropriation as required by law. Even though the rule as to immunity of a state from suit is relaxed, the power of the courts ends when the judgment is rendered. The functions and public services rendered by the State cannot be allowed to be paralyzed or disrupted by the diversion of public funds from their legitimate and specific objects, as appropriated by law. However, the rule is not absolute and admits of a well-defined exception, that it, when there is a corresponding appropriation is required by law. In such a case, the monetary judgment may be legally enforced by judicial processes (City of Caloocan vs. Allarde, GR 107271, Sept. 10, 2003). iv) Suits against foreign states / international organizations CASES
The Republic of the Philippines has accorded the Holy See the status of a foreign sovereign. The privilege of sovereign immunity in this case was sufficiently established by the memorandum and certification of the Department of Foreign Affairs. Where the plea of immunity is recognized and affirmed by the executive branch, it
is the duty of the courts to accept this claim so as not to embarrass the executive arm of the government in conducting the country’s foreign relations. Pursuant to the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, a diplomatic envoy is granted immunity from the civil and administrative jurisdiction of the receiving state over any real action relating to private immovable property situated in the territory of the receiving state which the envoy holds on behalf of the sending state for the purposes of the mission (Holy See vs. Rosario, GR 101949, December 1, 1994). •
The traditional rule of State immunity exempts a State from being sued in the courts of another State without its consent or waiver. This rule is a necessary consequence of the principles of independence and equality of States. However, the rules of International Law are not petrified; they are constantly developing and evolving. And because the activities of states have multiplied, it has been necessary to distinguish them — between sovereign and governmental acts (jure imperii) and private, commercial and proprietary acts (jure gestionis). The result is that State immunity now extends only to acts jure imperii. A state may be said to have descended to the level of an individual and can thus be deemed to have tacitly given its consent to be sued only when it enters intyo business contracts. The rule does not apply where the contract relates to the exercise of its sovereign functions and is not for commercial or business purposes (USA vs, Ruiz, 136 SCRA 487).
International law is founded largely upon the principles of reciprocity, comity, independence, and equality of States which were adopted as part of the law of our land under Art. II, Sec. 2 of the 1987 Constitution. The rule that a State may not be sued without its consent is necessary consequence of the principles and independence and equality of States. However, the increasing need of sovereign States to enter into purely commercial activities remotely connected with the discharge of their governmental functions brought about a new concept of sovereign immunity. This concept, the restrictive theory, holds that immunity of the sovereign is recognized only with regard to public acts or acts jure imperii, but not with regard to private acts or jure gestionis. Is the foreign State engaged in the regular conduct of business? If the foreign State is not engaged regularly in a business or commercial activity, or if the act is in pursuit of a sovereign activity, or an incident thereof, then it is an act jure imperii (Republic of Indonesia vs. Vinzon, GR 154705, June 25, 2003).
Slandering a person could not possibly be covered by the immunity agreement because our laws do not allow the
commission of a crime in the name of official duty. It is a wellsettled principle of law that a public official may be liable in his personal private capacity for whatever damage he may have caused by his actdone with malice or in bad faith or beyond the scope of his authority or jurisdiction. Under the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, the commission of a crime is not part of official duty (Liang vs. People, GR 125865, January 28, 2002). 3) CITIZENSHIP AND SUFFRAGE a)
Citizenship – Article IV, CONSTITUTION
Section 1. The following are citizens of the Philippines:  Those who are citizens of the Philippines at the time of the adoption of this Constitution;  Those whose fathers or mothers are citizens of the Philippines;  Those born before January 17, 1973, of Filipino mothers, who elect Philippine citizenship upon reaching the age of majority; and  Those who are naturalized in accordance with law. Section 2. Natural-born citizens are those who are citizens of the Philippines from birth without having to perform any act to acquire or perfect their Philippine citizenship. Those who elect Philippine citizenship in accordance with paragraph (3), Section 1 hereof shall be deemed natural-born citizens. Section 3. Philippine citizenship may be lost or reacquired in the manner provided by law. Section 4. Citizens of the Philippines who marry aliens shall retain their citizenship, unless by their act or omission, they are deemed, under the law, to have renounced it. Section 5. Dual allegiance of citizens is inimical to the national interest and shall be dealt with by law. i) Concept, distinguished from nationality, kinds Citizenship – is a membership in a political community which is personal and more or less permanent in character. It is the status of
being a citizen, or of owing allegiance to a certain State for the privilege of being under its protection. Citizenship is political in character, nationality refers to a racial or ethnic relationship. Who are citizens of the Philippines? 1. Those who are citizens of the Philippines at the time of the adoption of the 1987 Constitution; 2. Those whose fathers or mothers are citizens of the Philippines; 3. Those born before January 17, 1973 of Filipino mothers, who elect Philippine citizenship upon reaching the age of majority. Note: The election must be made within a reasonable period (within 3 yrs.) after reaching the age of majority. 4. Those who are naturalized in accordance with law. Caram Rule: Under the 1935 Constitution, those born in the Philippines of foreign parent, who before the adoption of the Constitution had been elected to public office in the Philippines are considered Filipino citizens. FPJ Disqualification Case: The 1935 Constitution, during which regime FPJ had seen first light, confers citizenship to all persons whose fathers are Filipino citizens regardless of whether such children are legitimate or illegitimate (Tecson vs. Comelec, GR. No. 161434, March 3,2004). Natural-born citizens: 1. Citizens of the Philippines from birth who do not need to perform any act to acquire or perfect their Philippine citizenship. 2. Those who elect Philippine citizenship under Art. IV, Sec. 1(3) of 1987 Constitution. CASES •
The sale of the land in question was consummated sometime in March 1936, during the effectivity of the 1935 Constitution which prohibits alient to acquire private agricultural lands, save in cases of hereditary succession. Thus, Lee Liong, a Chinese citizen, was disqualified to acquire the land in question (Lee vs. Dir. Of Lands, GR 128195, October 3, 2001).
ii) acquisition 1.
a. Jus Soli – acquisition of citizenship on the basis of place of birth. b. Jus Sanguinis – acquisition of citizenship on the basis of blood relationship. 2. By naturalization – is the legal act of adopting an alien and clothing him with the privilege of a native-born citizen. Effects of naturalization: 1. On the wife: Vests citizenship on the wife who might herself be lawfully naturalized. She need not prove her qualifications but only that she is not disqualified (Moy Ya Lim Yao v. Comm. Of Immigration, 41 SCRA 292). 2. On the minor children: i) if born in the Philippines – automatically becomes a citizen; ii) If born abroad before the naturalization of the father a) residing in RP at the time of naturalization – automatically becomes citizens. b) if not residing in RP at the time of naturalization – considered citizen only during minority, unless begins to reside permanently in the Phils.
iii) If born outside the Philippines after parents’ naturalization considered Filipino, provided registered as such before any Phil. Consulate within 1 year after attaining majority age and takes oath of allegiance. 3.
By marriage: Marriage of Filipino with an alien: General Rule: The Filipino retains Philippine citizenship. Exception: If, by their act or omission they are deemed under the law to have renounce it.
The term “natural-born citizens,” is defined to include “those who are citizen of the Philippines. From birth without having to perform any act to acquire or perfect their Phil. Citizenship.” Through the constitution history, four modes of acquiring citizenship – naturalization, jus soli, res judicata, jus sanguinis – had been in vogue. Only two, i.e., jus soli and jus sanguinis, could qualify a person to being a “natural-born” citizen of the Philippines. Jus soli, per Roa vs. Collector of Customs (1912), did not last long. With the adoption of the 1935 constitution and the reversal of Roa in Tan Chong vs. Sec. of Labor (1947), jus sanguinis or blood relationship would now become the primary basis of citizenship by birth (Tecson vs. COMELEC, GR 161434, March 3, 2004).
Under Sec. 15 of Commonwealth Act 473, an alien woman marrying a Filipino, native born or naturalized, become ipso facto a Filipina provided she is not disqualified to be a citizen of the Philippines under Sec. 4 of the same law. Likewise, an alien woman married to an alien who is subsequently naturalized here follows the Philippines citizenship of her husband the moment he takes his oath as Filipino citizen, provided that she does not suffer from any disqualifications under said Sec. 4. “Ipso Facto” as here use does not mean that all alien wives and all minor children of Philippine citizens, from the mere fact of relationship, necessary become such citizens also. Those who do not meet the statutory requirements do not ipso facto become citizens; they must apply for naturalization in order to acquire such status. Under the second paragraph of Sec. 15, a minor child of a Filipino naturalized under the law, who was born in the Philippine, becomes ipso facto a citizen of the Philippines from the time the fact of relationship concurs with the fact of a citizenship of his parent, and the time when child become a citizen does not depend upon the time that he is able to prove that he was born in the Philippines (Moya Lim Yao vs Commissioner, 41 SCRA 292). iii) Reacquisition •
How may one lose citizenship (C.A. No. 63)?
1. By naturalization in a foreign country. 2. By express renunciation of citizenship. 3. By subscribing to an oath of allegiance to the laws or constitution of a foreign country.
4. By serving in the armed forces of an enemy country. 5. By cancellation of certificates of naturalization. 6. By being a deserter of the armed forces of one’s country. • 1.
How may one reacquire citizenship? By direct act of Congress
RA 9225 – Citizenship Retention and Re-acquisition Act of 2003.’ Approved on August 29, 2003 provides that, on taking the oath of allegiance to the public: a. Natural born citizens of the Philippines who have lost their Philippine citizenship by reason of their naturalization as citizens of a foreign country are deemed to have re-acquired Philippine citizenship and b. Natural born citizens of the Philippines who after the effectively of the said RA become citizens of a foreign country shall retain their Philippine citizenship. 2.
By RA 8171 is an act providing for the repatriation of: a. Filipino women who have lost their Philippine citizenship by marriage to aliens and; b. Natural-born Filipinos who have lost their Philippine citizenship on account of political or economic necessity. Repatriation shall be effected by taking the necessary oath of allegiance to the Republic of the Phils. and registration in proper civil registry and in Bureau of Immigration. The Bureau of immigration shall thereupon cancel the pertinent alien certificate of registration and issue the certificate of identification as Filipino citizen to the repatriated citizen. It allows the person to recover or return to his original status before he lost his Philippine citizenship (Bengzon III v. HRET, GR No. 142840, May 7, 2001). Derivative Citizenship – The unmarried child, whether legitimate, illegitimate or adopted, below eighteen (18) years of age, of those who re-acquire Philippine citizenship upon effectivity of the said RA shall be deemed citizens of the Philippines.
Sec 117 of the Omnibus Election Code provides that a qualified voter must be among other qualifications, a citizen of the Philippines, this being an indispensable requirement for suffrage under Art. 5, Sec.1, of the Constitution. Even if he did lose his naturalized American citizenship, such forfeiture did not and could not have the effect of automatically restoring his citizenship in the Philippines that he had earlier renounce. At best, what might have happened as a result of a lose of his naturalized citizenship was that he became a stateless individual. Qualifications for public office are continuing requirements and must be possessed not only at the time of appointment or election or assumption of office but during the officers entire tenure (Frivaldo vs. Comelec, 174 SCRA 245).
Under Philippine law, citizenship may be reacquired by direct act of Congress, by naturalization or by repatriation. Unlike in naturalization where an alien covets a first-time entry into Philippine political life, in repatriation the applicant is a former natural-born Filipino who is merely seeking to reacquire his previous citizenship. Philippine citizenship is an indispensable requirement for holding an elective public office, and the purpose of the citizenship qualification is none other than to ensure that no alien, i.e., no person owing allegiance to another nation, shall govern our people and our country or a unit of territory thereof. The law intended CITIZENSHIP to be a qualification distinct from being a VOTER, even if being a voter presumes being a citizen first. It also stands to reason that the voter requirement was included as another qualification (aside from "citizenship"), not to reiterate the need for nationality but to require that the official be registered as a voter IN THE AREA OR TERRITORY he seeks to govern. A person may subsequently reacquire, or for that matter lose, his citizenship under any of the modes recognized by law for the purpose (Frivaldo vs. Comelec, 257 SCRA 727).
The term “residence” is to be understood not in its common acceptation as referring to “dwelling” or “habitation,” but rather to “domicile” or legal residence,that is, “the place where a party actually or constructively has his permanent home, where he, no matter where he may be found at any given time, eventually intends to return and remain (animus manendi).” A domicile of origin is acquired by every person at birth. It is usually the place where the child’s parents reside and continues until the same is abandoned by acquisition of new domicile (domicile of choice). In the case at bar, petitioner lost his domicile of origin in Oras by becoming a U.S. citizen after enlisting in the U.S. Navy in 1965.
From then on and until November 10, 2000, when he reacquired Philippine citizenship, petitioner was an alien without any right to reside in the Philippines save as our immigration laws may have allowed him to stay as a visitor or as a resident alien. The status of being an alien and a non-resident can be waived either separately, when one acquires the status of a resident alien before acquiring Philippine citizenship, or at the same time when one acquires Philippine citizenship. As an alien, an individual may obtain an immigrant visa under Sec 13 of the Philippine Immigration Act of 1948 and an Immigrant Certificate of Residence (ICR) and thus waive his status as a non-resident. On the other hand, he may acquire Philippine citizenship by naturalization under C.A. No. 473, as amended, or, if he is a former Philippine national, he may reacquire Philippine citizenship by repatriation or by an act of Congress, in which case he waives not only his status as an alien but also his status as a non-resident alien (Coquilla vs. Comelec, GR 151914, July 31, 2002). •
Art. IV, Sec. 1 (4) states that citizens are “those whose mothers are citizens of the Philippines and upon reaching the age of majority, elect the Philippine citizenship.” A minor who has not had the opportunity to elect Philippine citizenship, therefore, is still an alien, his father being an alien. It is illogical that Delfin follow the repatriation of his Filipino mother since he was never a Filipino, therefore he could not reacquire it. No rule or right (even right of mother to retain custody of a minor child) should frustrate government's action against violators of immigration laws (Villahermosa vs. Commissioner, 80 Phil 541).
There are two ways of acquiring citizenship: (1) by birth, and (2) by naturalization. These ways of acquiring citizenship correspond to the two kinds of citizens: the natural-born citizen, and the naturalized citizen. A person who at the time of his birth is a citizen of a particular country, is a natural-born citizen thereof. As defined in the same Constitution, natural-born citizens "are those citizens of the Philippines from birth without having to perform any act to acquire or perfect his Philippine citizenship." On the other hand, naturalized citizens are those who have become Filipino citizens through naturalization, generally under Commonwealth Act No. 473, otherwise known as the Revised Naturalization Law, which repealed the former Naturalization Law (Act No. 2927), and by Republic Act No. 530. To be naturalized, an applicant has to prove that he possesses all the qualifications and none of the disqualifications provided by law to become a Filipino citizen. The decision granting Philippine citizenship becomes
executory only after two (2) years from its promulgation when the court is satisfied that during the intervening period, the applicant has (1) not left the Philippines; (2) has dedicated himself to a lawful calling or profession; (3) has not been convicted of any offense or violation of Government promulgated rules; or (4) committed any act prejudicial to the interest of the nation or contrary to any Government announced policies. Filipino citizens who have lost their citizenship may however reacquire the same in the manner provided by law. Commonwealth Act No. 63 (CA No. 63), enumerates the three modes by which Philippine citizenship may be reacquired by a former citizen: (1) by naturalization, (2) by repatriation, and (3) by direct act of Congress. Naturalization is a mode for both acquisition and reacquisition of Philippine citizenship. As a mode of initially acquiring Philippine citizenship, naturalization is governed by Commonwealth Act No. 473, as amended. On the other hand, naturalization as a mode for reacquiring Philippine citizenship is governed by Commonwealth Act No. 63. Under this law, a former Filipino citizen who wishes to reacquire Philippine citizenship must possess certain qualifications 17 and none of the disqualifications mentioned in Section 4 of C.A. 473. Repatriation, on the other hand, may be had under various statutes by those who lost their citizenship due to: (1) desertion of the armed forces; (2) service in the armed forces of the allied forces in World War II; (3) service in the Armed Forces of the United States at any other time; (4) marriage of a Filipino woman to an alien; and (5) political and economic necessity. As distinguished from the lengthy process of naturalization, repatriation simply consists of the taking of an oath of allegiance to the Republic of the Philippines and registering said oath in the Local Civil Registry of the place where the person concerned resides or last resided. Under the 1973 Constitution definition, there were two categories of, Filipino citizens which were not considered natural-born: (1) those who were naturalized and (2) those born before January 17, 1973, of Filipino mothers who, upon reaching the age of majority, elected Philippine citizenship. Those "naturalized citizens" were not considered natural-born obviously because they were not Filipinos at birth and had to perform an act to acquire Philippine citizenship. Those born of Filipino mothers before the effectivity of the 1973 Constitution were likewise not considered natural-born because
they also had to perform an act to perfect their Philippine citizenship. The present Constitution, however, now considers those born of Filipino mothers before the effectivity of the 1973 Constitution and who elected Philippine citizenship upon reaching the majority age as natural-born. It is apparent from the enumeration of who are citizens under the present Constitution that there are only two classes of citizens: (1) those who are natural-born and (2) those who are naturalized in accordance with law. A citizen who is not a naturalized Filipino, i.e., did not have to undergo the process of naturalization to obtain Philippine citizenship, necessarily is a natural-born Filipino. Noteworthy is the absence in said enumeration of a separate category for persons who, after losing Philippine citizenship, subsequently reacquire it. The reason therefor is clear: as to such persons, they would either be naturalborn or naturalized depending on the reasons for the loss of their citizenship and the mode prescribed by the applicable law for the reacquisition thereof (Bengson vs. HRET, GR 142840. May 7, 2001). iv)
Dual citizenship – RA 9925, RA 7160 Sec. 40
Distinction between dual citizenship from dual allegiance Dual Citizenship
Arises when as a result of the concurrent application of the laws of two or more states, a person is simultaneously considered a citizen of those states.
Refer to the situation in which a person simultaneously owes by some positive act, loyalty to two or more states.
Is voluntary and illegal. (Mercado vs. Manzano, 307 SCRA 630)
Dual citizenship is different from dual allegiance. The former arises when, as a result of the concurrent application of the different laws of two or more states, a person is simultaneously considered a national by the said states. For instance, such a
situation may arise when a person whose parents are citizens of a state which adheres to the principle of jus sanguinis is born in a state which follows the doctrine of jus soli. Such a person, ipso facto and without any voluntary act on his part, is concurrently considered a citizen of both states. Considering the citizenship clause (Art. IV) of our Constitution, it is possible for the following classes of citizens of the Philippines to possess dual citizenship: (1) Those born of Filipino fathers and/or mothers in foreign countries which follow the principle of jus soli; (2) Those born in the Philippines of Filipino mothers and alien fathers if by the laws of their fathers' country such children are citizens of that country; (3) Those who marry aliens if by the laws of the latter's country the former are considered citizens, unless by their act or omission they are deemed to have renounced Philippine citizenship. Dual allegiance, on the other hand, refers to the situation in which a person simultaneously owes, by some positive act, loyalty to two or more states. While dual citizenship is involuntary, dual allegiance is the result of an individual's volition. With respect to dual allegiance, Article IV, Sec. 5 of the Constitution provides: "Dual allegiance of citizens is inimical to the national interest and shall be dealt with by law." The Court held that in including Sec. 5 Art. IV on citizenship, the concern of the Constitutional Commission was not on dual citizens per se, but with naturalized citizens who maintain their allegiance to their countries of origin even after their naturalization. By filing a certificate of candidacy when he ran for his present post, Manzano elected Philippine citizenship and in effect renounced his American citizenship. What the law prohibits is dual allegiance, and not dual citizenship (Mercado vs. Manzano, 307 SCRA 630). •
The Philippine law on citizenship adheres to the principle of jus sanguinis. Thereunder, a child follows the nationality or citizenship of the parents regardless of the place of his/her birth, as opposed to the doctrine of jus soli which determines nationality or citizenship on the basis of place of birth. Private respondent Rosalind Ybasco Lopez was born on May 16, 1934 in Napier Terrace, Broome, Western Australia, to the spouses, Telesforo Ybasco, a Filipino citizen and native of Daet, Camarines Norte, and Theresa Marquez, an Australian. Historically, this was a year before the 1935 Constitution took into effect and at that time, what served
as the Constitution of the Philippines were the principal organic acts by which the United States governed the country. These were the Philippine Bill of July 1, 1902 and the Philippine Autonomy Act of August 29, 1916, also known as the Jones Law. Under both organic acts, all inhabitants of the Philippines who were Spanish subjects on April 11, 1899 and resided therein including their children were deemed to be Philippine citizens. By virtue of the same laws, Telesforo's daughter, herein private respondent Rosalind Ybasco Lopez, is likewise a citizen of the Philippines (Valles vs. Comelec, GR 137000, August 9, 2000). b)
Suffrage – Article V, CONSTITUTION
Section 1. Suffrage may be exercised by all citizens of the Philippines not otherwise disqualified by law, who are at least eighteen years of age, and who shall have resided in the Philippines for at least one year, and in the place wherein they propose to vote, for at least six months immediately preceding the election. No literacy, property, or other substantive requirement shall be imposed on the exercise of suffrage. Section 2. The Congress shall provide a system for securing the secrecy and sanctity of the ballot as well as a system for absentee voting by qualified Filipinos abroad. The Congress shall also design a procedure for the disabled and the illiterates to vote without the assistance of other persons. Until then, they shall be allowed to vote under existing laws and such rules as the Commission on Elections may promulgate to protect the secrecy of the ballot. i) Concept, qualifications, occasions for exercise Suffrage – right to vote in elections. Qualifications: 1. 2. 3. 4.
Citizen of the Philippines Not disqualified by law. At least 18 years old Resident of the Philippines for at least 1 year.
5. Resident of the place wherein he/she proposes to vote for at least 6 months immediately preceding the election. Residency requirement under Art. V has 2 senses: 1. Domicile – this is in reference to the 1 year residency requirement in the Philippines. The principal elements of domicile – physical presence in the country and intention to adopt it as one’s domicile – must concur. 2. Temporary Residence – This is in reference to the 6 mos. Residency requirement in the place where one wants or intend to vote. Residence can either mean domicile or temporary residence. CASES •
The right to vote has reference to a constitutional guarantee of the utmost significance. It is a right without which the principle of sovereignty residing in the people becomes nugatory. It is a political right enabling every citizen to participate in the process of government to assure that it derives its power from the consent of the governed. The COMELEC is not empowered to decide questions “involving the right to vote.” The power to determine whether or not a person can exercise or precluded from exercising the right of suffrage is a judicial question, and the power to resolve such question has been excluded from the Commission's power to be judge of election contests (Pungutan vs. Abubakar, GR No. L-33541, Januray 20, 1972).
If the provision of the Constitutional Convention Act were to lend itself to the view that the use of the taped jingle could be prohibited, then the challenge of unconstitutionality would be difficult to meet. For, in unequivocal language, the Constitution prohibits an abridgment of free speech or a free press. It has been the constant holding of the Court that this preferred freedom calls all the more for the utmost respect when what may be curtailed is the dissemination of information to make more meaningful the equally vital right of suffrage. What respondent Commission did, in effect, was to impose censorship on petitioner, an evil against which this constitutional right is directed. The power of decision of the Commission is limited to purely 'administrative questions. It could not have been otherwise, that respondent Commission cannot exercise any authority in conflict with or outside of the law, and there is no higher law than the Constitution. There could be no
justification then for lending approval to any ruling or order issuing from respondent Commission, the effect of which would be to nullify so vital a constitutional right as free speech (Mutuc vs. Comelec, 32 SCRA 228). •
The right to abstain from voting for a position deserves the same respect as the exercise of the right to vote. To compel the COMELEC to conduct a special for the position of congressman as demanded by petitioners would be to nullify the decisions of the voters who cast their votes in the May 1992 elections (Caram vs. Comelec, GR No. 1052 14, August 30, 1993). ii) Absentee voting – Republic Act 9189
Sec. 4 of RA 9189 says: “Sec. 4. Coverage. – All citizens of the Philippines abroad, who are not otherwise disqualified by law, at least eighteen (18) years of age on the day of elections, mat vote for president, vice-president, senators and party-list representatives.” This rule applies to those who have not lost their domicile in the Philippines. To whom does absentee voting apply? 1. Persons who have the qualifications of a voter but who happen to be temporarily abroad. 2. Qualified voters who are in the Philippines but are temporarily absent from their voting places. CASES •
Sec. , Art. V of the Constitution specifically provides that suffrage may be exercised by (1) all citizens of the Philippines, (2) not otherwise disqualified by law, (3) at least eighteen years of age, (4) who are residents in the Philippines for at least one year and in the place where they propose to vote for at least six months immediately preceding the election. Under Sec. 5(d) of RA 9189, one of those disqualified from voting is an immigrant or permanent resident who is recognized as such in the host country unless he/she executes an affidavit declaring that he/she shall resume actual physical permanent residence in the Philippines not later than three years from approval of his/her registration under said act.
Petitioner questions the rightness of the mere act of an execution of an affidavit to qualify the Filipinos abroad who are immigrant or permanent residents, to vote. He focuses solely on Section 1, Article V of the Constitution in ascribing constitutional infirmity to Sec. 5 (d) of RA 9189, totally ignoring the provisions of Section 2 empowering Congress to provide a system for absentee voting by Filipinos abroad. It is clear from the discussions of the members of the Constitutional Commission that they intended to enfranchise as much as possible all Filipino citizens abroad who have not abandoned their domicile of origin. The Commission even intended to extend to young Filipinos who reach voting age abroad who parents' domicile of origin is in the Philippines, and consider them qualified as voters for the first time. It is in pursuance of that intention that the Commission provided for Sec. 2 immediately after the residency requirement of Sec. 1. By the doctrine of necessary implication in statutory construction, the strategic location of Sec. 2 indicates that the Constitutional Commission provided for an exception to the actual residency requirement of Sec. 1 with respect to qualified Filipinos abroad. The same commission has in effect declared that qualified Filipinos who are not in the Philippines may be allowed to vote eventhough they do not satisfy the residency requirement in Sec. 1, Article V of the Constitution (Macalintal vs. Comelec, Gr No. 157013, July 10, 2003).