Wednesday, February 08, 2012

MMDA v. Viron Transportation Co., Inc.,530 SCRA 341 (2007)

Facts: PGMA issued EO 179, which provided for the establishment of a Mass Transport System for Greater Manila. Pursuant to this EO, the Metro manila Council of the MMDA cited the need to remove the bus terminals located along major thoroughfares of Metro Manila. Respondents, provincial bus operators who had bus terminals that were threatened to be removed, alleges that EO should be declared unconstitutional and illegal for transgressing the possessory rights of owners and operators of public land transportation units over their respective terminals

Issue: Whether or not EO 179 is a valid exercise of police power

Held: Petition denied. EO 179 is null and void. MMDA has no police power, let alone legislative power. In light of the administrative nature of its powers and functions, the MMDA is devoid of authority to implement the Project as envisioned by the EO; hence it could not have been validly designated by the President to undertake the Project. It follows that the MMDA cannot validly order the elimination of the respondents’ terminals.

Police power rests primarily with the legislature, such power may be delegated, as it is in fact increasingly being delegated. By virtue of a valid delegation, the power may be exercised by the President and administrative boards as well as by the lawmaking bodies of municipal corporations or local government under an express delegation by the LGC of 1991.

Measures calculated to promote the safety and convenience of the people using the thoroughfares by the regulation of vehicular traffic present a proper subject for the exercise of police power.

On Constitutional Law, “The true role of Constitutional Law is to effect an equilibrium between authority and liberty so that rights are exercised within the framework of the law and the laws are enacted with due deference to rights.”

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