Friday, March 09, 2012

Manalo v Sistoza

Facts: RA 6975 was enacted by Corazon Aquino, creating DILG. Secs 26 and 31 pertain to the Chief of PNP as well as PNP officers and members as having to be confirmed by the CA before assuming their duties. Executive Secretary Drilon promoted the 15 respondent officers and appointed them to the PNP in a permanent capacity. The petitioners assail the legality of such appointment because, invoking said provisions of RA 6975, confirmation of CA is needed. They also assail the disbursements made out by the DMB Secretary (Salvador Enriquez III)’s for the officers’ salaries and emoluments. 

(1) Whether or not  RA 6975 is a valid law

(2) Whether or not PNP officers are akin to the AFP, whose positions need CA confirmation 

(3) Whether or not Salvador Enriquez III acted with grave abuse of discretion 

(1) Partly. Secs 26 and 31 go against the Constitution because according to Sec 16, Art 7, the PNP officers do not fall under the first group which requires the confirmation of the CA. courts have the inherent authority to determine whether a statute enacted by the legislature transcends the limit delineated by the fundamental law. However, the remainder of RA 6975 remains valid because assailed provisions are severable from the main statute. 

(2) No. The constitution expressly provides for their distinction (See Secs 24 and 6 of Art 16). Also, RA 6975 provides that “no element of the police force shall be military nor shall any position thereof be occupied by active members of the AFP.” 

(3) No. The disbursements and emoluments disbursed for the respondents are valid. 

“Experience showed that when almost all presidential appointments required the consent of the CA, as was the case under the 1935 Constitution, the commission became a venue for horse-trading and similar malpractices. On the other hand, placing absolute power to make appointments in the President with hardly any check by the legislature as what happened under the 1973 Constitution, leads to abuse of such powers. 1987 Constitution attempts a middle ground.” 

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