Ateneo 2011 Political Law (Law on Public Officers)

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Text of Ateneo 2011 Political Law (Law on Public Officers)

  • FRATERNAL ORDER OF UTOPIAATENEO DE MANILA UNIVERSITYSCHOOL OF LAW ARIS S. MANGUERA

    Article XI ACCOUNTABILITY OF PUBLIC

    OFFICERS

    I. STATEMENT OF POLICY (Section 1)II. IMPEACHMENT (Sections 2 & 3)III. SANDIGANBAYAN (Section 4)IV. OMBUDSMAN (Section 5,6,8-14)V. SPECIAL PROSECUTOR (Section 7)VI. ILL-GOTTEN WEALTH (Section 15)VII. RESTRICTION ON LOANS(Section 16)VIII.TRANSPARENCY RULE (Section 17)IX. ALLEGIANCE TO THE STATE AND THE CONSTITUTION (Section 18)

    I. Statement of Policy

    Section 1. Public office is a public trust. Public officers and employees must, at all times, be accountable to the people, serve them with utmost responsibility, integrity, loyalty, and efficiency; act with patriotism and justice, and lead modest lives.

    A. Public Office

    1. DefinitionThe right, authority or duty, created and conferred by law, by which for a given period, either fixed by law or enduring at the pleasure of the creating power, an individual is invested with some sovereign power of government to be exercised by him for the benefit of the public. (Fernandez v. Sto. Tomas, 1995)

    2. Elements1. Created by law or by authority of law;2. Possess a delegation of a portion of the

    sovereign powers of government, to be exercised for the benefit of the public;

    3. Powers conferred and duties imposed must be defined, directly or impliedly, by the legislature or by legislative authority;

    4. Duties must be performed independently and without the control of a superior power other than the law, unless they be those of an inferior or subordinate office created or authorized by the legislature, and by it placed under the general control of a superior office or body; and

    5. Must have permanence of continuity.681

    3. CreationPublic officers are created:

    a. By the Constitution

    681 Antonio Nachura, Outline on Political Law, 423 (2006)

    b. By valid statutory enactments (e.g. Office of the Insurance Commissioner)

    c. By authority of law (e.g. Davide Commission)682

    B. Public Officer

    A person who holds a public office.683

    C. Public Office as Public Trust

    Q: What is meant by public office is a public trust?A: The basic idea of government in the Philippines is that of a representative government the officers being mere agents and not rulers of the people where every officer accepts office pursuant to the provisions of law and holds the office as a trust for the people whom he represents. (Justice Malcom in Cornejo v. Gabriel, 41 Phil 188, 1920)684

    Q: What does the command to lead modest lives entail?A: Even if the public officer is independently wealthy, he should not live in a manner that flaunts wealth. 685

    II. Impeachment

    Section 2. The President, the Vice-President, the Members of the Supreme Court, the Members of the Constitutional Commissions, and the Ombudsman may be removed from office on impeachment for, and conviction of, culpable violation of the Constitution, treason, bribery, graft and corruption, other high crimes, or betrayal of public trust. All other public officers and employees may be removed from office as provided by law, but not by impeachment.

    Section 3. (1) The House of Representatives shall have the exclusive power to initiate all cases of impeachment.

    (2) A verified complaint for impeachment may be filed by any Member of the House of Representatives or by any citizen upon a resolution or endorsement by any Member thereof, which shall be included in the Order of Business within ten session days, and referred to the proper Committee within three session days thereafter. The Committee, after hearing, and by a majority vote of all its Members, shall submit its report to the House within sixty session days from such referral, together with the corresponding resolution. The resolution shall be calendared for consideration by the House within ten session days from receipt thereof.

    (3) A vote of at least one-third of all the Members of the House shall be necessary either to affirm a favorable resolution with the Articles of Impeachment of the Committee, or override its contrary resolution. The vote of each Member shall be recorded.

    682 Antonio Nachura, Outline on Political Law, 423 (2006)683 Antonio Nachura, Outline on Political Law, 423 (2006)684 Bernas Primer at 440 (2006 ed.)685 Bernas Primer at 440 (2006 ed.)

    I sweat, I bleed, I soarService, Sacrifice, Excellence 204

  • FRATERNAL ORDER OF UTOPIAATENEO DE MANILA UNIVERSITYSCHOOL OF LAW ARIS S. MANGUERA

    (4) In case the verified complaint or resolution of impeachment is filed by at least one-third of all the Members of the House, the same shall constitute the Articles of Impeachment, and trial by the Senate shall forthwith proceed.

    (5) No impeachment proceedings shall be initiated against the same official more than once within a period of one year.

    (6) The Senate shall have the sole power to try and decide all cases of impeachment. When sitting for that purpose, the Senators shall be on oath or affirmation. When the President of the Philippines is on trial, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court shall preside, but shall not vote. No person shall be convicted without the concurrence of two-thirds of all the Members of the Senate.

    (7) Judgment in cases of impeachment shall not extend further than removal from office and disqualification to hold any office under the Republic of the Philippines, but the party convicted shall nevertheless be liable and subject to prosecution, trial, and punishment, according to law.

    (8) The Congress shall promulgate its rules on impeachment to effectively carry out the purpose of this section.

    A. Definition of Impeachment

    A national inquest into the conduct of public men.686

    B. Purpose of Impeachment

    The purpose of impeachment is not to punish but only to remove an officer who does not deserve to hold office.687

    C. Impeachable Officers1. President2. Vice-President3. Chief Justice and Associate Justice of the

    Supreme Court4. Chairmen and members of the Constitutional

    Commissions5. Ombudsman

    Note: The list of officers subject to impeachment in Section 2 as worded is exclusive.

    Members of the Supreme CourtThe Supreme Court said that the Special Prosecutor cannot conduct an investigation into alleged misconduct of a Supreme Court justice, with the end view of filing a criminal information against him with the Sandiganbayan. A Supreme Court Justice cannot be charged in a criminal case or a disbarment proceeding, because the ultimate effect of either is to remove him from office, and thus circumvent the provision on removal by impeachment thus violating his security of tenure (In Re: First

    686 Antonio Nachura, Outline on Political Law, 345 (2006)687 Bernas Primer at 442 (2006 ed.)

    Indorsement from Hon. Raul Gonzalez, A.M. No. 88-4-5433)

    An impeachable officer who is a member of the Philippine bar cannot be disbarred first without being impeached. (Jarque v. Desierto, 250 SCRA 11)688

    C. Grounds1. Culpable Violation of the Constitution2. Treason, Bribery and Graft and Corruption 3. Other High Crimes or4. Betrayal of Public Trust

    Note: The enumeration is exclusive.

    Culpable Violation of the ConstitutionCulpable violation of the Constitution is wrongful, intentional or willful disregard or flouting of the fundamental law. Obviously, the act must be deliberate and motivated by bad faith to constitute a ground for impeachment. Mere mistakes in the proper construction of the Constitution, on which students of law may sincerely differ, cannot be considered a valid ground for impeachment.689

    TreasonTreason is committed by any person who, owing allegiance to the Government of the Philippines, levies war against it or adheres to its enemies, giving them aid and comfort. (RPC, Article 114)

    BriberyBribery is committed by any public officer who shall agree to perform an ac, whether or not constituting crime, or refrain from doing an act which he is officially required to do in connection with the performance of his official duties, in consideration for any offer, promise, gift or present received by him personally or through the mediation of another, or who shall accept gifts offered to him by reason of his office. 9RPC, Arts. 210-211)

    Other High CrimesAccording to the special committee of the House of Representatives that investigated the impeachment charges against President Quirino, are supposed to refer to those offenses which, like treason and bribery, are of so serious and enormous a nature as to strike at the very life or the orderly workings of the government. This rather ambiguous definition, assuming it is correct, would probably exclude such offenses as rape and murder which, although as serious as treason and bribery, will not necessarily strike at the orderly workings, let alone life of the government.690

    Graft and Corruption

    688 Antonio Nachura, Outline on Political Law, 345 (2006)689 Cruz, Philippine Political Law, p.335690 Cruz, Philippine Political Law, p.335

    I sweat, I bleed, I soarService, Sacrifice, Excellence 205

  • FRATERNAL ORDER OF UTOPIAATENEO DE MANILA UNIVERSITYSCHOOL OF LAW ARIS S. MANGUERA

    Graft and corruption is to be understood in the light of the prohibited acts enumerated in the Anti-Grant and Corrupt Practices Act, which was in force at the time of the adoption of the Constitution.691

    Betrayal of Public TrustThe 1987 Cons