Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Free Telephone Workers Union vs. Minister of Labor, 108 SCRA 757

Facts: On September 14, 1981, there was a notice of strike with the Ministry of Labor for unfair labor practices stating the following grounds: "1) Unilateral and arbitrary implementation of a Code of Conduct; 2) Illegal terminations and suspensions of our officers and members as a result of the implementation of said Code of Conduct; and 3) Unconfirmation of call sick leaves and its automatic treatment as Absence Without Official Leave of Absence (AWOL) with corresponding suspensions, in violation of our Collective Bargaining Agreement." After which came, on September 15, 1981, the notification to the Ministry that there was compliance with the two-thirds strike vote and other formal requirements of the law and Implementing Rules. Several conciliation meetings called by the Ministry followed, with the petitioner manifesting its willingness to have a revised Code of Conduct that would be fair to all concerned but with a plea that in the meanwhile the Code of Conduct being imposed be suspended-a position that failed to meet the approval of private respondent. Subsequently, on September 25, 1981, the respondent certified the labor dispute to the National Labor Relations Commission for compulsory arbitration and enjoined any strike at the private respondent's establishment. The labor dispute was set for hearing by respondent National Labor Relations Commission on September 28, 1981. There was in the main an admission of the above relevant facts by public respondents. Private respondent, following the lead of petitioner labor union, explained its side on the controversy regarding the Code of Conduct, the provisions of which as alleged in the petition were quite harsh, resulting in what it deemed indefinite preventive suspension-apparently the principal cause of the labor dispute. The very next day after the filing of the petition, this Court issued the following resolution: "Considering the allegations contained, the issues raised and the arguments adduced in the petition for Certiorari with prayer for a restraining order, the Court Resolved to (a) require the respondents to file an [answer], not a motion to dismiss, on or before Wednesday, October 7, 1981; and (b) [Set] this case for hearing on Thursday, October 8, 1981 at 11:00 o'clock in the morning." After the parties were duly heard, Solicitor General Estelito P. Mendoza appearing for the public respondents, the case was considered ripe for decision.

Issue: Whether or not there is undue delegation to the MOLE.

Held: No. The Delegation to the MOLE of the power to assume jurisdiction in the labor dispute was likely to affect the national interest or to certify the same to the NLRC for arbitration does not constitute an undue delegation of legislative powers.

The allegation that there is undue delegation of legislative powers cannot stand the test of scrutiny. The power which he would deny the Minister of Labor by virtue of such principle is for petitioner labor union within the competence of the President, who in its opinion can best determine national interests, but only when a strike is in progress. Such admission is qualified by the assumption that the President "can make law," an assertion which need not be passed upon in this petition. What possesses significance for the purpose of this litigation is that it is the President who "shall have control of the ministries." It may happen, therefore, that a single person may occupy a dual position of Minister and Assemblyman. To the extent, however, that what is involved is the execution or enforcement of legislation, the Minister is an official of the executive branch of the government. The adoption of certain aspects of a parliamentary system in the amended Constitution does not alter its essentially presidential character. Article VII on the presidency starts with this provision: "The President shall be the head of state and chief executive of the Republic of the Philippines." Its last section is an even more emphatic affirmation that it is a presidential system that obtains in our government.

Digg Google Bookmarks reddit Mixx StumbleUpon Technorati Yahoo! Buzz DesignFloat Delicious BlinkList Furl

0 comments: on "Free Telephone Workers Union vs. Minister of Labor, 108 SCRA 757"

Post a Comment