Collapsable Answer Just click the plus sign.
1.) A bill was introduced in the House of Representatives in order to implement faithfully the provisions of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) to which the Philippines is a signatory. Congressman Pat Rio Tek questioned the constitutionality of the bill on the ground that the provisions of UNCLOS are violative of the provisions of the Constitution defining the Philippine internal waters and territorial sea. Do you agree or not with the said objection? Explain.
The objection of Congressman Pat Rio Tek does not hold water. UNCLOS does not define the internal and territorial waters of states but merely "prescribes the water-land ratio, length, and contour of baselines of archipelagic States like the Philippines. Whether referred to as Philippine internal waters or as archipelagic waters under UNCLOS, the Philippines exercises sovereignty over the body of water lying landward of the baselines, including the air space over it and the submarine areas underneath.
2.) Define the archipelagic doctrine of national territory, state its rationale and explain how it is implemented through the straight baseline method
By the term “archipelagic doctrine of national territory” is meant that the islands and waters of the Philippine Archipelago are unified in sovereignty, together with “all the territories over which the Philippines has sovereignty or jurisdiction.”
This archipelagic doctrine, so described under Article 1 of the Constitution, draws its rationale from the status of the whole archipelago in sovereignty by which under Part IV of the UNCLOS the Philippines is defined as an Archipelagic State in Article 46, thus:
“archipelagic state” means a State constituted wholly by one or more archipelagos and may include other islands;
“archipelago” means a group of islands including parts of islands interconnecting waters and other natural features which are so closely interrelated that such islands waters and other natural features form an intrinsic geographic, economic and political entity, or which historically have been regarded as such.
As an archipelagic state, the national territory is implemented by drawing its “straight archipelagic baselines” pursuant to Art. 47 of the UNCLOS which prescribes among its main elements, as follows:
By “joining the outermost points of the outermost islands and drying reefs of the archipelago”, including the main islands and an area in which the ration of the area of the water to the land, including atolls, is between 1 to 1 and 9 to 1.
Mainly, the length of such baselines “shall not exceed 100 nautical miles…”
“The drawing of such baselines shall not depart to any appreciable extent from the general configuration of the archipelago.”
3.) Section 2 of RA 9522 declared the Kalayaan Island Group (KIG) and Scarborough Shoal as “Regime of Islands.” Professor Agaton contends that since the law did not enclose said islands, the Philippines lost its sovereignty and jurisdiction over them. Is his contention correct? Explain.
This line of argument is negated by RA 9522 itself. Section 2 of the law commits to text the Philippines continued claim of sovereignty and jurisdiction over the KIG and the Scarborough Shoal:
SEC. 2. The baselines in the following areas over which the Philippines likewise exercises sovereignty and jurisdiction shall be determined as Regime of Islands under the Republic of the Philippines consistent with Article 121 of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS):
The Kalayaan Island Group as constituted under Presidential Decree No. 1596 and
Bajo de Masinloc, also known as Scarborough Shoal.
Although the Philippines has consistently claimed sovereignty over the KIG and the Scarborough Shoal for several decades, these outlying areas are located at an appreciable distance from the nearest shoreline of the Philippine archipelago, such that any straight baseline loped around them from the nearest basepoint will inevitably depart to an appreciable extent from the general configuration of the archipelago.
Hence, far from surrendering the Philippines claim over the KIG and the Scarborough Shoal, Congress’ decision to classify the KIG and the Scarborough Shoal as Regime[s] of Islands under the Republic of the Philippines consistent with Article 121 of UNCLOS III manifests the Philippine States responsible observance of its pacta sunt servanda obligation under UNCLOS III. Under Article 121 of UNCLOS III, any naturally formed area of land, surrounded by water, which is above water at high tide, such as portions of the KIG, qualifies under the category of regime of islands, whose islands generate their own applicable maritime zone (Magallona v. Ermita, 655 SCRA 476).
4.) It is said that "waiver of immunity by the State does not mean a concession of its liability". What are the implications of this phrase?
The phrase that waiver of immunity by the State does not mean a concession of liability means that by consenting to be sued, the State does not necessarily admit it is liable. As stated in Philippine Rock Industries, Inc. v. Board of Liquidators, 180 SCRA 171, in such a case the State is merely giving the plaintiff a chance to prove that the State is liable but the State retains the right to raise all lawful defenses.
5.) a. What do you understand by state immunity from suit? Explain. b. How may consent of the state to be sued be given? Explain.
a.) STATE IMMUNITY FROM SUIT means that the State cannot be sued without its A corollary of such principle is that properties used by the State in the performance of its governmental functions cannot be subject to judicial execution.
b.) Consent of the State to be sued may be made expressly as in the case of a specific, express provision of law as waiver of State immunity from suit is not inferred lightly (e.g. A. 327 as amended by PD 1445) or impliedly as when the State engages in proprietary functions (U.S. v. Ruiz, U.S. v. Guinto) or when it files a suit in which case the adverse party may file a counterclaim (Froilan v. Pan Oriental Shipping) or when the doctrine would in effect be used to perpetuate an injustice (Amigable v. Cuenca, 43 SCRA 360).
6.) The employees of the Philippine Tobacco Administration (PTA) sued to recover overtime pay. In resisting such claim, the PTA theorized that it is performing governmental functions. Decide and explain.
As held in Philippine Virginia Tobacco Administration v. Court of Industrial Relations, 65 SCRA 416, the Philippine Tobacco Administration is not liable for overtime pay, since it is performing governmental functions. Among its purposes are to promote the effective merchandising of tobacco so that those engaged in the tobacco industry will have economic security, to stabilize the price of tobacco, and to improve the living and economic conditions of those engaged in the tobacco industry.
7.) The Republic of the Philippines, through the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), constructed a new highway linking Metro Manila and Quezon province, and which major thoroughfare traversed the land owned by Mang Pandoy. The government neither filed any expropriation proceedings nor paid any compensation to Mang Pandoy for the land thus taken and used as a public road. Mang Pandoy filed a suit against the government to compel payment for the value of his land. The DPWH filed a motion to dismiss the case on the ground that the State is immune from suit. Mang Pandoy filed an opposition. Resolve the motion.
The motion to dismiss should be denied. As held in Amigable v. Cuenca, 43 SCRA 300 (1972), when the Government expropriates private property without paying compensation, it is deemed to have waived its immunity from suit. Otherwise, the constitutional guarantee that private property shall not be taken for public use without payment of just compensation will be rendered nugatory.