1.) The Congress establishes by law Philippine Funds, Inc., a private corporation, to receive foreign donations coming from abroad during national and local calamities and disasters, and to enable the unhampered and speedy disbursements of the donations through the mere action of its Board of Directors. Thereby, delays in the release of the donated funds occasioned by the stringent rules of procurement would be avoided. Also, the releases would not come under the jurisdiction of the Commission on Audit (COA). a) Is the law establishing Philippine Funds, Inc. constitutional? Explain your answer. b) Can the Congress pass the law that would exempt the foreign grants from the jurisdiction of the COA? Explain your answer.
a. The establishment of Philippine Funds, Inc. is valid. It was created to enable the speedy disbursements of donations for calamities and disasters, Public purpose is no longer restricted to traditional government functions (Petitioner- Organization v. Executive Secretary, G.R. Nos, 147036-37 & 147811, April 10, 2012, 269 SCRA 49)
b. Congress cannot exempt the foreign grants from the jurisdiction of the Commission on Audit. Its jurisdiction extends to all government-owned or controlled corporations, including those funded by donations through the Government (Art IX-D, Sec. 3 of the 1987 Philippine Constitution; and Petitioner Corporation v. Executive Secretary, G.R. Nos. 147036-37 & 147811, April 10, 2012, 269 SCRA 49).
2.) Express your agreement or disagreement with any of the following statements. Begin your answer with the statement: "I AGREE" or "DISAGREE" as the case may be: a. Anyone, whether individual, corporation or association, qualified to acquire private lands is also qualified to acquire public lands in the Philippines. b. A religious corporation is qualified to have lands in the Philippines on which it may build its church and make other improvements provided these are actually, directly and exclusively used for religious purposes. c. A religious corporation cannot lease private lands in the Philippines. d. A religious corporation can acquire private lands in the Philippines provided all its members are citizens of the Philippines. e. A foreign corporation can only lease private lands in the Philippines.
a. I disagree. Under Section 7, Article XII of the Constitution, a corporation or association which is sixty percent owned by Filipino citizens can acquire private land, because it can lease public land and can therefore hold public land. However, it cannot acquire public land. Under Section 3, Article XII of the Constitution, private corporations and associations can only lease and cannot acquire public land. Under Section 8, Article XII of the Constitution, a natural-born Filipino citizen who lost his Philippine citizenship may acquire private land only and cannot acquire public land.
b. I disagree. The mere fact that a corporation is religious does not entitle it to own public land. As held in Register of Deeds v. Ung Siu Si Temple, 97 Phil. 58, 61, land tenure is not indispensable to the free exercise and enjoyment of religious profession of worship. The religious corporation can own private land only if it is at least sixty per cent owned by Filipino citizens.
c. I disagree. Under Section 1 of Presidential Decree No. 471, corporations and associations owned by aliens are allowed to lease private lands up to twenty-five years, renewable for another period of twenty-five years upon agreement of the lessor and the lessee. Hence, even if the religious corporation is owned by aliens, it can lease private lands.
d. I disagree. For a corporation to qualify to acquire private lands in the Philippines, under Section 7, Article X of the Constitution in relation to Section 2, Article XII of the Constitution, only sixty per cent (60%) of the corporation is required to be owned by Filipino citizens for it to qualify to acquire private lands.
e. I agree. A foreign corporation can lease private lands only and cannot lease public land. Under Section 2, Article XII of the Constitution, the exploration, development and utilization of public lands may be undertaken through co-production. Joint venture or production-sharing agreements only with Filipino citizen or corporations or associations which are at least sixty percent owned by Filipino citizen.
3.) Andy Lim, an ethnic Chinese, became a naturalized Filipino in 1935. But later he lost his Filipino citizenship when he became a citizen of Canada in 1971. Wanting the best of both worlds, he bought, in 1987, a residential lot in Forbes Park and a commercial lot in Binondo. Are these sales valid? Why?
NO, the sales are not valid. Under Section 8, Article XII of the Constitution, only a natural-born citizen of the Philippines who lost his Philippine citizenship may acquire private land. Since Andy Lim was a former naturalized Filipino citizen, he is not qualified to acquire private lands.
4.) A, a Filipino citizen, and his wife B, a Japanese national, bought a five-hectare agricultural land from X, a Filipino citizen. The couple later executed a deed of donation over the same land in favor of their only child C. A year later, however, C died in vehicular accident without leaving a last will and testament. Now, X brought suit to recover the land on the ground that B, being an alien, was not qualified to buy the land when B and A jointly bought the land from him and that, upon the death of C, the land was inherited by his parents but B cannot legally acquire and/or inherit it. How should the case be decided? If X filed the suit against C when the latter was still alive, would your answer be the same? Why?
X cannot recover the land whether from C or A and B. Under Article IV, Section 1 (2) of the Constitution, C is a Filipino citizen since his father is a When A and B donated the land to C, it became property of a Filipino citizen. As held in Halili v. Court of Appeals, 287 SCRA 465 (1998), the sale of land to an alien can no longer be annulled if it has been conveyed to a Filipino citizen. Since C left no will and his parents are his heirs, in accordance with Article XII, Section 7 of the Constitution, B can acquire the land by hereditary succession.
5.) EAP is a government corporation created for the purpose of reclaiming lands, including foreshore and submerged areas, as well as to develop, improve, acquire, lease and sell any and all kinds of lands. A law was passed transferring title to EAP of lands already acclaimed in the foreshore and offshore areas of MM Bay, particularly the so- called Liberty Islands, as alienable and disposable lands of the public domain. Titles were duly issued in in EAP’s name. Subsequently, EAP entered into a joint venture agreement (JVA) with ARI, a private foreign corporation, to develop Liberty Islands. Additionally, the JVA provided for the reclamation of 250 hectares of submerged land in the area surrounding Liberty Islands. EAP agreed to sell and transfer to ARI a portion of Liberty Islands and a portion of the area to be reclaimed as the consideration for ARI's role and participation in the joint venture, upon approval by the Office of the President. Is there any constitutional obstacle to the sale and transfer by EAP to ARI of both portions as provided for in the JVA?
ARI cannot acquire a portion of Liberty Islands because, although EAP has title to Liberty Islands and thus such lands are alienable and disposable land, they cannot be sold, only leased, to private corporations. The portion of the area to be reclaimed cannot be sold and transferred to ARI because the seabed is inalienable land of the public domain. (Section 3, Article XU of the 1987 Constitution; Chavez v. Public Estates Authority, 384 SCRA 152 )
6.) TRUE or FALSE. Explain your answer in not more than two (2) sentences: Aliens are absolutely prohibited from owning private lands in the Philippines.
FALSE. Under Section 7, Article XII of the Constitution, aliens may acquire private land by hereditary succession. Under Section 8, Article XII of the Constitution, natural-born citizens of the Philippines who lost their Filipino citizenship may be transferees of private land.