Bar Q and A #41

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).

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.

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.

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.

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 [2002])

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.


The position of the Department of Public Works and Highways and of the local government unit is correct. As held in Export Processing  Zone Authority v. Commission on Human Rights, 208 SCRA125 (1992), no provision in the Constitution or any law confers on the Commission on Human Rights jurisdiction to issue temporary restraining orders or writs of preliminary injunction. The Commission on Human Rights have no judicial power. Its powers are merely investigatory.

a. Under the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the scope of human rights includes "those that relate to an individual's social, economic, cultural, political and civil relations... along with what is generally considered to be his inherent and inalienable rights, encompassing almost all aspects of life."

In the case at bar, the land adjoins a busy national highway and the construction of the squatter shanties impedes the flow of traffic. The consequent danger to life and limb cannot be ignored. It is paradoxical that a right which is claimed to have been violated is one that cannot, in the first place, even be invoked, if it is, in fact, extant. Based on the circumstances obtaining in this instance, the CHR order for demolition do not fall within the compartment of human rights violations involving civil and political rights intended by the Constitution (Simon v. Commission on Human Rights, G.R. No. 100150 [1994]).

b. The CHR may not issue an "order to desist" or restraining order. The constitutional provision directing the CHR to provide for preventive measures to those whose human rights have been violated or need protection may not be construed to confer jurisdiction on the Commission to issue a restraining order or writ of injunction for, it that were the intention, the Constitution would have expressly said so. Jurisdiction is conferred only by the Constitution or by law. It is never derived by implication (Export Processing Zone Authority v. Commission on Human Rights, G.R. No. 101476 [1992]).

c. The CHR does not possess adjudicative functions and therefore, on its own, is not empowered to declare Mayor Cruz in contempt for issuing the "order to desist." However, under the 1987 Constitution, the CHR is constitutionally authorized, in the exercise of its investigative functions, to "adopt its operational guidelines and rules of procedure, and cite for contempt for violations thereof in accordance with the Rules of Court." Accordingly, the CHR, in the course of an investigation, may only cite or hold any person in contempt and impose the appropriate penalties in accordance with the procedure and sanctions provided for in the Rules of Court (Carino v. Commission on Human Rights, G.R. No. 96681 [1991]).

According to Reyes v. Court of Appeals, 194 SCRA 402, academic freedom is the freedom of a faculty member to pursue his studies in his particular specialty and thereafter to make known or publish the result of his endeavors without fear that retribution would be visited on him in the event that his conclusions are found distasteful or objectionable by the powers that be, whether in the political, economic, or academic establishments.

In Garcia v. Faculty Admission Committee, 68 SCRA 277, it was held that the academic freedom of an institution of higher learning includes the freedom to determine who may teach, what may be taught, how it shall be taught, and who may be admitted to study. Because of academic freedom, an institution of higher learning can refuse to re-enroll a student who is academically deficient or who has violated the rules of discipline. Academic freedom grants institutions of higher learning the discretion to formulate rules for the granting  of  honors. Likewise, because of academic freedom, an institution of higher learning can close a school.

As held in Department of Education, Culture and Sports v. San Diego, 180 SCRA 533, the rule is a valid exercise of police power to ensure that those admitted to the medical profession are qualified. The arguments of Cruz are not meritorious. The right to quality education and academic freedom are not absolute.

Under Section 5(3), Article XIV of the Constitution, the right to choose a profession is subject to fair, reasonable and equitable admission and academic requirements. The rule does not violate equal protection. There is a substantial distinction between medical students and other students. Unlike other professions, the medical profession directly affects the lives of the people.