16 comments

  1. FIRST WEEK:

    Link: https://news.abs-cbn.com/video/news/08/16/18/curfew-sa-pagbubukas-ng-boracay-pinag-iisipan

    “Nag-inspeksiyon kanina sa Boracay si Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat. At sa muling pagbubukas ng isla sa Oktubre, pinag-iisipan nila ang pagpapatupad ng curfew sa isla. Exclusive, i-Bandila mo, Jeff Canoy. – Bandila, Miyerkoles, 15 Agosto, 2018”

    In this news report, we can relate it to Section 6 under the Bill of Rights concerning the right to travel. It states that: “…Neither shall the right to travel be impaired except in the interest of national security, public safety, or public health, as may be provided by law.” As Boracay is recovering, they’re thinking of enacting a curfew for the benefit of the environment. However, this is a breach to the Constitution because by enabling a curfew, you are violating the right of the people to travel and go around wherever they want.

    Connecting it to our lesson today, I learned that it is our right to be able to go wherever and whenever we want. Initially I didn’t think much about curfews but now I understand that it is a violation of our Constitution. Thus, it shouldn’t be allowed. I think that their idea of having a curfew is connected to the thought that Boracay got dirty because of the parties at night. However, there are so many other alternatives to keep Boracay clean. There could be cleaning programs everyday or instructions to tourists to throw their trash right or by crowd control, etc. There is no need (and it is unconstitutional) to declare a curfew.

  2. FIRST WEEK BONUS:

    LINK: https://news.abs-cbn.com/news/08/16/18/charter-groups-unfinished-business-winning-critics-over

    MANILA — The lights are out at the leaders’ hall of the Philippine International Convention Center where a group of experts, handpicked by President Rodrigo Duterte, spent the last 5 months rewriting the country’s fundamental law.

    Duterte basically handpicked experts as part of a consultative committee responsible for amending or changing the Constitution. However, under our Constitution, there are only three ways one can do that: Either through a constitutional convention, a constituent assembly or through the people’s initiative. As this committee doesn’t fall under any of those three, then it is invalid and unconstitutional.

    Today, I learned the importance of the provisions of the Constitution. It is precisely because of these laws that situations above can be avoided. There has to be a way to do it properly, legally, and in the terms of what our Constitution has provided. After all, none is above it and thus, they should follow it. It is no surprise then that they are having a hard time selling it to the people (aside from the criticisms on federalism) because the way they’re doing it in the first place is already a breach of the highest law of the land and therefore, the contract in which the people agreed upon.

  3. FIRST WEEK NEWS EVENT:

    http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/1022977/gordon-cops-who-jailed-lawyers-could-face-charges#ixzz5OgUqbD8T
    Gordon: ‘Cops who jailed lawyers could face charges’
    By: DJ Yap – Reporter / @deejayapINQ
    Philippine Daily Inquirer / 06:10 AM August 20, 2018

    “The policemen who arrested and detained three lawyers for taking photos and videos during a drug raid at a Makati bar could face arbitrary detention charges, Sen. Richard Gordon said on Sunday.”
    In this news event, it is clear that the arrest of three lawyers monitoring an inventory during a drug raid in a bar at Makati City in behalf of the bar owner (which was their client) is a clear violation of the Bill of Rights, under Article III, Section 1 (No person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law, nor shall any person be denied the equal protection of the laws) and Section 14 (1) (No person shall be held to answer for a criminal offense without due process of law) of the 1987 constitution. Under Section 1 and Section 14 of the Bill of Rights, citizens have their right to liberty and have equal protection of the laws. Government officials and several lawyer-organizations have decried against the arrest of the three lawyers. Lawyers, should not be arrested without probable cause, most especially when the officers of the court exercising their duties. Arresting legal counsels while ensuring and monitoring the maintenance of regularities and proper processes of a drug raid is uncalled for. On the other hand, PNP claims that it was an “obstruction of justice”. However, as stated in the PRESIDENTIAL DECREE No. 1829 (Penalizing Obstruction of Apprehension and Prosecution of Criminal Offenders), according to Human Rights lawyers, taking down notes and pictures while performing duties as legal counsels is definitely not obstruction of justice.

    In line with the class discussion and the news article, in the country’s very critical condition, it is very important to be aware and knowledgeable or our rights. The arrest of the three lawyers reflects the intensity of our criminal justice system. Lawyers performing their duties are now being arrested; tambays are now also being arrested. Therefore all citizens should learn how to use their rights to protect them from unlawful arrest and detention. I appreciate very much that this class will eventually arm us with the basic knowledge of the constitution and our rights as future media practitioners.

  4. http://news.abs-cbn.com/news/08/20/18/forceful-duterte-to-get-senators-on-board-federalism-nene-pimentel

    ‘Forceful’ Duterte to get senators on board federalism: Nene Pimentel
    Christian V. Esguerra, ABS-CBN News
    Posted at Aug 20 2018 01:52 PM

    “MANILA — Senators rejecting federalism now will “toe the line” once President Rodrigo
    Duterte moves “forcefully” for a shift to this new system of government, a member of his consultative committee said Monday.”

    In this news article, former Senate President Aquilino Nene Pimentel stated that in line with the Senate’s opposition in federalism, and its seemingly independence , once the President acts forcefully, senate will have to “toe the line”. With the course of the government’s timeline (Congress’ next Constituent Assembly and the 2019 elections) the discussions regarding federalism will most probably resume after the 2019 elections. However, some members of the consultative committee, who were hand-picked by president Duterte himself to review and create a draft for the new constitution strongly suggested that federalism should be transformed into a major election issue.

    I have learned that although there are independent government bodies that are essential to the approval of Federalism in the country, this article has made me realize that the President still has a strong influence over the Congress, Senate and most specially the citizens regarding the issue. What the President might say or not say regarding the matter will likely affect the implementation of the Constitutional amendment.

  5. Link : https://www.philstar.com/headlines/2018/08/17/1843371/sc-urged-stop-senate-probe-calidas-firm

    “MANILA, Philippines — Solicitor General Jose Calida and his family have asked the Supreme Court (SC) to issue a temporary restraining order (TRO) that would prevent the conduct of a legislative inquiry on their alleged conflict of interest stemming from the security service contracts between several government agencies and their family-owned Vigilant Investigative and Security Agency.” – Evelyn Macairan (The Philippine Star) – August 17, 2018 – 12:00am

    Calida’s Firm questioned the authority of minority senators who requested the investigations of contracts between their firm and the government. Solicitor General Jose together with his family filed a petition for certiorari and prohibition to stop the scheduled investigation into their family-owned security firm’s government contracts worth P261.39 million. Although Calida has not yet been divested of the remains as the holder of 60% which is mandatory for any official or employee if he has resign from his position in any private business enterprise as said in the Rule IX of the Implementing Rules and Regulations of the Code of Conduct. But despite the allegations, Calida argued that Trillanes committed grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction which enabled him to file a petition for certiorari and prohibition to stop the upcoming investigation. The Calida has the right of privacy since the business is privately owned. As said in the Bill of Rights Section 2 which talks about “the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures of whatever nature and for any purpose..”

    In our class, we have discussed the basic fundamentals of the bill of rights together with the two basic petitions which is the petition for certiorari and prohibition and the petition for certiorari and mandamus. With this incident I have learned the power of these petitions in which the supreme court will side to those who are closer to the constitution. Also, in the perspective of Calida, it restrained the senators from intervening with the private transaction of Calida’s firm with the government. If the firm is not privately owned, thus the senators’ right to information would have prevailed and the investigation will proceed. In summary, the petition for certiorary and prohibition is applicable to many types of cases in terms of restricting or stopping a certain power from extending its jurisdiction.

  6. Link https://business.mb.com.ph/2018/08/16/sc-upholds-bsp-on-stopping-release-of-p25-b-to-banco-filipino/
    The Supreme Court (SC) has affirmed a Court of Appeals (CA) decision that nullified a trial court order which directed the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) and the Monetary Board (MB) to release up to P25 billion in financial assistance and other regulatory reliefs to the now padlocked Banco Filipino Savings and Mortgage Bank. Rey G. Panaligan – Aug 16, 2018

    Banco Filipino has been going through many different trials in order to attain its 25 billion peso funding from the BSP and MB. Banco Filipino has been given the unfortunate rep of bearing a name of being dealt the unfortunate hand. A company that already had issues with keeping itself legally open, has found itself in need of financial aid. Conveniently for them. The BSP and the MB were ordered to be liquidated which included grounds from cases involving Banco Filipino. Due to this, MB and Banco Filipino would have struck a deal. MB would release the 25 Billion to Banco Filipino, if the latter were to drop all charges against the former. The process was proceeded in an RTC in Makati, however was just dismissed by the SC due to the lack of jurisdiction over the petition for certiorari and mandamus filed by Banco Filipino.

    In class we have learned about petition for certiorari and mandamus, which is the push to go for something. In this case it would be for the Banco Filipino’s best interest to file for a petition for certiorari and mandamus for the 2.5 billion peso financial assistance. I would imagine it would’ve been better if they didn’t settle for an RTC, as I have just learned that it would require a Court of Appeals decision for one like this to push through.

  7. Bonus
    Link http://www.bworldonline.com/lawyer-files-petition-seeking-to-suspend-train/
    Human rights lawyer Neri Colmenares said in an interview with reporters on Tuesday, “Yung filing na ito ay humingi ng TRO mula sa Korte Suprema para ihinto ang TRAIN kasi ang laki na ng dagok nito sa mga mamayanan at sana agad itong pagbigyan ng korte suprema para muna ihinto ito (This filing seeks for a TRO from the Supreme Court so it would suspend TRAIN because it has a huge effect on the people and we hope that the Supreme Court will suspend this immediately).” Gillian M. Cortez Aug 22 – 2018
    TRAIN law is the rule of taxing higher to those who are incoming higher, and likewise lower to those who have lower incomes. Neri Colmenares says that this law sends us in a regressive direction because it increases indirect consumption taxes, lowers PIT including on the high incomers, and lowers taxes on property and wealth. The SC has declared that the petition for certiorari and prohibition was too weak for multiple reasons, such as: it not being a proper solution to TRAIN, violations towards hierarchy courts, raise political questions, and also includes President Duterte when he should be immune from suit. However each of the reasons the SC gave went against the 1987 constitution and an attack on some rites. For example, it does not state anywhere in the 1987 constitution that the president cannot be involved in suit.
    In class we learn petition for certiorari and prohibition; which is a movement for something to be stopped. In this case this would be the move to stop TRAIN. We also learned of the constitution which dictates the rules of the government. In this specific case, there are a lot of things that I think go against the interest of the people. First I believe that TRAIN isn’t a fair solution to any poverty problem, however how it was dismissed also seemed unfair to the petitioners. In the article the SC and petitioners go back and forth with these reasons but the one I find most entertaining is the uncertainty of whether Duterte should be included or not, when clearly this is a matter where he should be involved in.

  8. NEWS EVENT

    link:
    http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/news/metro/663614/cancer-stricken-detainee-dies-in-police-custody-kin-suspect-foul-play/story/

    “Another detainee has died at a police station in Manila.

    According to Emil Sumangil’s report on “QRT”, the detainee identified as Allan Rafael, 35, was suffering from cancer.

    In the report, police claims that Rafael died of natural causes and that the detainee was taken into custody because of illegal possession of dangerous drugs. However, Rafael’s family claims that there are clear signs that foul play was involved. First, his relatives claim that Alan’s body was embalmed without their consent and that when they looked at the body, Rafael had swelling, bruises and rashes on certain parts that wasn’t indicated on the police report. Rafael’s brother also recalled how the detainee was forced to withdraw cash from an ATM machine and tried to make him confess using drugs.

    In class, we learned that the accused also has rights for his/her protection and if indeed Rafael was coerced to confess, this is a violatio of Section 12.2 of the Bill of Rights that state “(2) No torture, force, violence, threat, intimidation, or any other means which vitiate the free will shall be used against him. Secret detention places, solitary, incommunicado, or other similar forms of detention are prohibited.”
    Also, if the police did abuse their authority and was involved in the death of the detainee, this is a violation of Sections 1 and 19.2 of the Bill of rights.

  9. BONUS

    Link: https://www.rappler.com/nation/209799-consultative-committee-hopes-duterte-will-not-quit-before-government-transition

    MANILA, Philippines – As it wraps up its operations, the Consultative Committee (Con-Com) has one last request to President Rodrigo Duterte – for him to resign only after the formation of a transition commission to ensure a smooth shift to a federal system of government.

    The Con-Com acknowledges that they need the support of the President for the federal transition of the government to materialize and take effect. With President Duterte’s statements regarding him stepping down from his position, the push for federalism could also be very much affected, if not put into a halt.

    Indeed, it was the President’s open support that made federalism the talk of the town. Although Con-Com’s draft of the constitution is without any legal effect, the fact that President Duterte pushed for the creation of the committee served as a beacon of hope for those in favor of the change.

  10. NEWS EVENT

    Link: http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/1022883/chr-defends-ninja-cops-their-lives-are-priceless-too

    CHR defends ‘ninja cops’: Their lives are priceless, too

    While the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) agrees that “ninja cops” or scalawag police officers must be removed from service, it stressed that their “lives are priceless, too.”
    By: Darryl John Esguerra – @inquirerdotnet
    INQUIRER.net / 05:17 PM August 19, 2018

    CHR Spokesperson Jacqueline de Guia made the statement last Sunday after President Duterte, during his speech in the Hugpong ng Pagbabago convention in Davao City on August 17, raised the bounty for “ninja cops” to ₱5M, under the condition that they are brought to him dead. Article III, Section 1 of the Bill of Rights states that “no person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law, nor shall any person be denied the equal protection of the laws.” It is clear that, under the constitution, the president’s statement violates the aforementioned constitutional law. No matter how corrupt or disgraceful these scalawag police officers may be, it cannot be used as an excuse to deprive them of their basic rights life, due process of law, and equal protection of the laws.

    As an introduction to the class, we have discussed the importance and fundamentals of the Philippine Constitution, particularly the Bill of Rights. It proves beneficial and important for us to know our rights as citizens of this country. Connecting this to the article I read, statements made by the president is not and should not be treated as the “end all be all” of everything, especially when the orders he wants fulfilled in his statements are unconstitutional.

  11. BONUS

    Link: https://www.rappler.com/newsbreak/rich-media/209699-proposed-4-high-courts-weakens-philippine-judiciary

    Breaking up Supreme Court into 4 high courts weakens judiciary

    MANILA, Philippines – If the proposal to create 4 high courts is followed, it will result in a weaker check and balance system, retired Supreme Court (SC) associate justice Vicente Mendoza warned.
    By: Jodesz Gavilan
    Published 3:29 PM, August 16, 2018
    Updated 9:25 PM, August 16, 2018

    Former SC Associate Justice Vicente Mendoza stressed the importance maintaining having one Supreme Court and that having 4 high courts will impoverish the whole judicial process. The Constitutional Committee (Con-Com), in their proposed draft of the constitution, replaced the Supreme Court with the Federal Supreme Court, Federal Constitutional Court, Federal Administrative Court, and Federal Electoral Court.

    Article VIII, Section 1 of the Philippine Constitution states that “the judicial power shall be vested in one Supreme Court and in such lower courts as may be established by law.” Although the draft proposed by Con-Com does not have legal effect, it is yet to be seen whether it will push through or not.

  12. NEWS EVENT

    Link: http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/1014077/dutertes-chilling-drug-war-lambasted

    “President Rodrigo Duterte drew harsh criticisms from a bishop, a senator and rights groups for separating human rights from people’s lives in his third State of the Nation Address (Sona), as he vowed to pursue a “relentless and chilling” war on drugs.”

    Since the beginning of President Duterte’s war on drugs it has received a lot of criticisms especially from Human Rights Advocates. The reason for these criticisms is how the law was being carried out. Their ways have always been deemed too brutal and has taken away the rights of the people to due process.

    In our discussion, what really took my attention is how enforcing a curfew throughout the country is unconstitutional. I found the topic interesting because up to this day, the 10 pm curfew is still being implemented in out barangay. I also learned that even though the president is the most powerful his power is duly restricted by the constitution and it reinforced in me the importance of a constitution in a state.

  13. BONUS

    Link: https://www.rappler.com/newsbreak/in-depth/206538-next-steps-federal-draft-constitution-submission-duterte

    “The Senate and House committees on constitutional amendments are studying various proposals for revisions to the constitution. But no progress can be made until the two chambers resolve the deadlock: vote separately or jointly in a Constituent Assembly (Con-Ass)?”

    This discussion illustrates how the 1987 Constitution lacks the words thereof that is needed to bestow a decision on choosing to between deciding on the charter change through Con-Ass or a Con-Con. It was stated in the report that the Constitution is not particular or does not state whether the Congress and Senate will be voting separately. This poses a problem considering what happened in the president’s latest SONA where the congress had given a vote to remove the ex-house speaker Alvarez in his position.

  14. NEWS EVENT

    Link:
    http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/1020434/120-bar-patrons-charged-with-visiting-drug-den
    http://news.abs-cbn.com/focus/08/14/18/lawyer-musicians-sound-alarm-over-makati-bar-raid
    http://radyo.inquirer.net/134721/pagdakip-sa-3-abogado-sa-time-bar-sa-makati-pinaiimbestigahan-sa-kamara

    “The 120 patrons of a bar in Makati City that was raided by the police on Saturday have been charged with “visiting a drug den.”

    The case against the customers, 57 of them foreigners, was just one of several filed on Sunday in the city prosecutor’s office in connection with the raid on Time in Manila, a bar located at the popular party hub of Barangay Poblacion.”

    The Bill of Rights in the 1987 Constitution ensures the right to due process of law, the right of the people to be secure in their persons against unreasonable searches and seizures, and the right to have competent and independent counsel. As per various accounts of the bar patrons, these rights were violated by the police.

    According to the reports about the Makati bar raid, people in Time Bar were rounded up and brought to the precinct. The police did not show their warrant for the raid, rather they only verbalized it. While a bar patron, who managed to contact her lawyer, refused to give her name and other information, and was told by the police to leave, numerous people were urged to provide their names and signatures.

  15. BONUS

    Link: https://www.rappler.com/nation/208063-senators-statements-arroyo-alvarez-debacle-house-representatives

    “MANILA, Philippines – Senators slammed lawmakers’ debacle over the speakership just ahead of President Rodrigo Duterte’s third State of the Nation Address (SONA), with some saying it shows how the House of Representatives could not be trusted to amend the 1987 Constitution…

    …The Senate and the House are divided on how to amend the 1987 Constitution. The House is pushing for a joint voting in a constituent assembly, one of the 3 modes for Charter Change and Duterte’s preferred method. Senators strongly oppose this, as they would practically be drowned out by 291 House members.”

    The preference of the Senate and the House of Representatives (HOR) with regards to amending the constitution differ. While the House wants a constituent assembly, the assembly can only be convened is if there is a joint resolution by both Senate and HOR.

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