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Part that is of general
nature and common to
all, or most, admin
agencies; chiefly but
not exclusively
procedural aw.
Administrative Law
It is a branch of public law fixing the organization and
determines the competence of administrative
authorities, and indicates the individual remedies for
the violation of the rights. (Sec. 2(3) of the Admin Code)
Kinds of administrative law
Scope of administrative law
Part that pertains to
particular services;
proceeds from the
particular statute
creating the individual
Fixes the administrative operation and structure
of the government
Executes or enforces that which is entrusted to
administrative authorities (all those public officers
and organs of the government charged with the
amplification, application and execution of the
Governs public officers
Creates administrative officers
Provides the remedies to those aggrieved by these
Governs Judicial Review
Includes rules, regulation, orders and decisions
made by administrative authorities
Includes the body of judicial/doctrines on any of
the above
Statutes setting up administrative authorities.
Body of doctrines and decisions dealing with the
creation, operation, and effect of determinations
and regulations of such administrative
Rules, regulations, or orders of such
administrative authorities in pursuance of the
purposes, for which administrative authorities
were created or endowed.
Ex: Omnibus Rules Implementing the Labor Code,
circulars of Central Monetary Authority
Determinations, decisions, and orders of such
administrative authorities in the settlement of
controversies arising in their particular field.
Ex: Awards of NLRC with respect to money claims
of employees
Administrative Agency
Classifications of Administrative Law
It is an organ of government, other than a court and
the legislature, which affects the rights of private
parties either through adjudication or rule making.
As to Source
Law that controls
Law made by the
Constitution, statutes,
General regulations and
judicial decisions,
Executive Orders,
constitute under
delegations of power
embodied in statutory
administrative law, and
imposing and constantly
expanding body of law.
As to Purpose
Adjective or Procedural
Administrative Law
Administrative Law
Establishes the
Derived from same
procedure which an
sources but contents
agency must or may
are different in that the
follow in the pursuit of
law establishes primary
its legal purpose.
rights and duties.
As to Applicability
General Administrative
Special/ particular
administrative law
Interpretation of the powers of the administrative
Administrative agencies have powers and functions
which may be administrative, investigatory,
regulatory, quasi legislative, or quasi-judicial or mix of
the five, as may be conferred by the constitution or by
the statute. They have in fine only such powers or
authority as are granted or delegated, expressly or
impliedly, by law. And in determining whether an
agency has certain powers, the inquiry should be from
the law itself. But once ascertained as existing, the
authority given should be liberally construed. (Soriano
v. MTRCB, G.R. No. 165785, April 29, 2009)
It refers “to any agency of the National Government,
not integrated within the department framework,
vested with special functions or jurisdiction by law,
endowed with some if not all corporate powers,
administering special funds and enjoying operational
Political and International Law
autonomy, usually through a charter. This term
includes regulatory agencies, chartered institutions
and government-owned or controlled corporations.”
(United Residents of Dominican Hills v. Commission on
The Settlement Of Land Problems, G.R. No. 135945,
March 7, 2001)
Kinds of administrative bodies or agencies
The common kinds of administrative agencies have
been classified according to their purpose
1. Those created to function in situations wherein
the government is offering some gratuity, grant,
or special privilege
2. Those set up to function in situations wherein the
government is seeking to carry on certain
functions of government
3. Those set up in situations wherein the
government is performing some business service
for the public
4. Those set up to function in situations wherein the
government is seeking to regulate businesses
affected with public interest
Ex: Insurance Commission, LTFRB, NTC
5. Those set up to function in situations wherein the
government is seeking under the police power to
regulate private businesses and individuals
6. Those agencies set up to function in situations
wherein the government is seeking to adjust
individual controversies because of some strong
social policy involved
Any of the various units of the government, including
a department, bureau, office, instrumentality, or
government-owned or controlled corporations, or a
local government or a distinct unit therein. (Sec.2,
Introductory Provisions, E.O. No. 292 – Administrative
Code of 1987)
It refers to an executive department created by law.
(Sec.2 (7), Introductory Provisions, E.O. No. 292 –
Administrative Code of 1987)
Any principal subdivision or unit of any department.
(Sec.2 (8), Introductory Provisions, E.O. No. 292 –
Administrative Code of 1987)
It refers, within the framework of governmental
organization, to any major functional unit of a
department or bureau including regional offices. It
may also refer to any position held or occupied by
individual persons, whose functions are defined by law
or regulation. (Sec.2 (9), Introductory Provisions, E.O.
No. 292 – Administrative Code of 1987)
Administrative power or function
Those which involve the regulation and control over
the conduct and affairs of individuals for; their own
welfare and the promulgation of rules and regulations
to better carry out the policy of the legislature or such
as are devolved upon the administrative agency by the
organic law of its existence. (In re: Rodolfo U.
Manzano,A.M. No. 88-7-1861-RTC, Oct. 5, 1988)
Manner of creation
1. Constitutional provision
2. Authority of law
3. Legislative enactment
Powers of administrative agencies
Reasons for the creation of administrative agencies
1. Help unclog court dockets
2. Meet the growing complexities of modern society
3. Help in the regulation of ramified activities of a
developing country
Basic powers of administrative agencies
Discretionary – the law imposes a duty upon a
public officer, and gives him the right to decide
how or when the duty shall be performed.
Ministerial – is one which is as clear and specific
as to leave no room for the exercise of discretion
in its performance.
Quasi-legislative power or rule-making power
Quasi-judicial or adjudicatory power
Determinative power
Legislative v. Quasi-legislative power
involves the discretion to
determine what the law
shall be
Cannot be delegated
Quasi-legislative v. Quasi-judicial power
Operates on the future
Has general application
Issuance pursuant to the
quasilegislative power may be
assailed in court without
doctrine of exhaustion of
administrative remedies
A valid exercise of quasilegislative power does
not require prior notice
and hearing (except
when the law requires
An issuance pursuant to
the exercise of quasilegislative power may be
assailed in court through
an ordinary action.
Operates based on past
only to the parties
involved in a dispute)
Issuance pursuant to
the exercise of quasijudicial power may, as a
rule, only be challenged
in court with prior
A valid exercise of
requires prior notice
and hearing (except
when the law requires
An issuance pursuant to
the exercise of quasijudicial function is
appealed to the Court
of Appeals via petition
for review (Rule 43).
Non-similarity of functions
administrative agencies
Involves the discretion
to determine how the
law shall be enforced
Can be delegated
Limitations to the exercise of quasi-legislative power
It must be within the limits of the powers granted
to administrative agencies.
Cannot make rules or regulations which are
inconsistent with the provision of the Constitution
or statute.
Cannot defeat the purpose of the statute.
May not amend, alter, modify, supplant, enlarge,
or limit the terms of the statute.
A rule or regulation must be uniform in operation,
reasonable and not unfair or discriminatory.
Administrative rule
Any agency statement of general applicability, which
implements or interprets a law fixes and describes
procedures in, or practice requirements of, an agency,
including its regulations. The term includes
memoranda or statements concerning the internal
administration or management of an agency not
affecting the rights of, or procedure available to the
public. (Administrative Code of 1987)
Source of the power to promulgate administrative
rules and regulations
The power to promulgate regulations is derived from
the legislature, by virtue of a valid delegation, either
expressed or implied.
Not all administrative agencies perform the same
functions or exercise the types of powers. While some
act merely as investigative or advisory bodies, most
administrative agencies have investigative, rulemaking, and determinative functions, or at least two
of such functions.
Non-applicability of notice and hearing in the
issuance of an administrative rule or regulation
As a general rule, in the performance of its executive
or legislative functions, such as issuing rules and
regulations, an administrative body need not comply
with the requirements of notice and hearing. (Corona
v. United Harbor Pilots Association of the Philippines,
G.R. No. 111963, December 12, 1997)
Quasi-legislative power/Rule-Making
The exercise of delegated legislative power, involving
no discretion as to what the law shall be, but merely
the authority to fix the details in the execution or
enforcement of a policy set out in the law itself.
The exception being where the legislature itself
requires it and mandates that the regulation shall be
based on certain facts as determined at an appropriate
investigation (Administrative Code of 1987)
Also, when, upon the other hand, the administrative
rule goes beyond merely providing for the means that
Political and International Law
can facilitate or render least cumbersome the
implementation of the law but substantially adds to or
increases the burden of those governed, it behooves
the agency to accord at least to those directly affected
a chance to be heard, and thereafter to be duly
informed, before that new issuance is given the force
and effect of law. (Commissioner of Internal Revenue
v. CA, G.R. No. 11976, August 26, 1996)
LPG Refillers Association of the Philippines, G.R.
No. 159149, June 26, 2006)
Authority of administrative officers to interpret the
Administrative officers tasked to implement the law
are also authorized to interpret it because they have
the expertise to do so.
Filing of copies of administrative rules and
regulations before the UPLC
Effect of administrative interpretations to courts
The Administrative Code of 1987, particularly Sec. 3
thereof, expressly requires each agency to file with the
Office of the National Administrative Register (ONAR)
of the University of the Philippines Law Center three
certified copies of every rule adopted by it.
Administrative issuances which are not published or
filed with the ONAR are ineffective and may not be
enforced. (GMA v. MTRCB, G.R. No. 148579, February
5, 2007)
Constructions of administrative officers are not
binding upon the Courts. Such interpretations of
administrative officers, however, are given great
weight unless such construction is clearly shown to be
in sharp contrast with the governing law of the state.
(Nestle Philippines Inc. v. CA, G.R. No. 86738,
November 13, 1991)
Publication requirement
Power of administrative agency to promulgate rules
and regulations on matters within their own
Doctrine of Subordinate Legislation
Publication is required as a condition precedent to the
effectivity of a law to inform the public of the contents
of the law or rules and regulations before their rights
and interests are affected by the same. (Philippine
International Trading Corporation v. Commission on
Audit, G.R. No. 132593, June 25, 1999)
Reason behind the delegation
It is well established in this jurisdiction that, while the
making of laws is a non-delegable activity that
corresponds exclusively to Congress, nevertheless the
latter may constitutionally delegate authority to
promulgate rules and regulations to implement a given
legislation and effectuate its policies, for the reason
that the legislature often finds it impracticable (if not
impossible) to anticipate and provide for the
multifarious and complex situations that may be met
in carrying the law into effect. All that is required is
that the regulation should be germane to the objects
and purposes of the law; that the regulation be not in
contradiction with it, but conform to the standards
that the law prescribes.
Exceptions to the requirement of publication
Interpretative regulations
Internal regulations
Letters of instructions (Tañada v. Tuvera G.R. No.
L-63915, December 29, 1986)
Effectivity of administrative rules
GR: Administrative rules take effect depending on the
date provided by it.
XPN: 15 days after publication if the administrative
rule is silent.
Penal sanctions
Contemporaneous construction
The construction placed upon the statute by an
executive or administrative officer called upon to
execute or administer such statute.
Administrative agencies may promulgate rules with
pernal sanctions provided the following requisites are
complied with:
1. The law must declare the act punishable;
2. The law must define the penalty;
3. The rules must be published in the Official
Gazette. (The Hon. Secretary Vincent S. Perez v.
These interpretative regulations are usually in the
form of circulars, directives, opinions, and rulings.
NOTE: Contemporaneous construction, while in no case
binding upon the courts, is nevertheless entitled to great
weight and respect in the interpretation of ambiguous
provisions of the law, unless it is shown to be clearly
Classifications of adjudicatory powers
Kinds of administrative rules and regulations
Supplementary or detailed legislation
Interpretative legislation
Contingent legislation
Requisites for a valid delegation of quasi-legislative
or rule-making power
The statute is complete in itself, setting forth the
policy to be executed by the agency
(Completeness test); and
Said statute fixes a standard, mapping out the
boundaries of the agency’s authority to which it
must conform (Sufficient standard test)
Quasi-judicial power
Power of administrative authorities to make
determinations of facts in the performance of their
official duties and to apply the law as they construe it
to the facts so found. It partakes the nature of judicial
power, but is exercised by a person other than a judge.
Enabling powers – characterized by the grant or
denial of permit or authorization
Ex: Issuance of licenses to engage in a particular
Directing powers – those that involve the
corrective powers of public utility commissions,
powers of assessment under the revenue laws,
reparations under public utility laws, and awards
under workmen’s compensation laws, and
powers of abstract determination such as
definition-valuation, classification and fact finding
Dispensing powers – Exemplified by the authority
to exempt from or relax a general prohibition, or
authority to relieve from an affirmative duty. Its
difference from licensing power is that dispensing
power sanctions a deviation from a standard
Summary powers – Those that apply compulsion
or force against person or property to effectuate
a legal purpose without a judicial warrant to
authorize such action.
Ex: Abatement of nuisance, summary restraint,
levy of property of delinquent tax payers
Equitable powers – Pertain to the power to
determine the law upon a particular state of facts
has the right to, and must, consider and make
proper application of the rules of equity.
Ex: Power to appoint a receiver, power to issue
Nature of administrative proceedings
It is summary in nature.
Limited jurisdiction of quasi-judicial agencies
Inapplicability of technical rules of procedure and
evidence in administrative proceedings
An administrative body to which quasi-judicial power
has been delegated is a tribunal of limited jurisdiction
and as such it could wield only such powers as are
specifically granted to it by its enabling statute. Its
jurisdiction is interpreted strictissimi juris.
The technical rules of procedure and of evidence
prevailing in courts of law and equity are not
controlling in administrative proceedings to free
administrative boards or agencies from the
compulsion of technical rules so that the mere
admission of matter which would be deemed
incompetent in judicial proceedings would not
invalidate an administrative order.
Conditions for the proper exercise of quasi-judicial
Jurisdiction must be properly acquired by the
administrative body;
Due process must be observed in the conduct of
the proceedings.
NOTE: The rules of procedure of quasi-judicial bodies shall
remain effective unless disapproved by the Supreme Court.
Political and International Law
Cardinal requirements of
administrative proceedings
Exceptions to the Requirement of notice and hearing
Right to a hearing which includes the right to
present one’s case and submit evidence in
The tribunal must consider the evidence
The decision must be supported by evidence
Such evidence must be substantial
The decision must be based on the evidence
presented at the hearing or at least contained in
the record, and disclosed to the parties affected
The tribunal or body of any of its judges must act
on its own independent consideration of the law
and facts of the controversy in arriving at a
The board or body should render decision that
parties know the various issues involved and
reason for such decision
Officer or tribunal must be vested with competent
jurisdiction and must be impartial and honest.
(Ang Tibay v. CIR, G.R. No. L-46496, February 27,
Inapplicability of the
administrative inquiries
The right to counsel which may not be waived, unless
in writing and in the presence of counsel, as
recognized by the Constitution, is a right of a suspect
in a custodial investigation. It is not an absolute right
and may, thus, be invoked or rejected in criminal
proceeding and, with more reason, in an
administrative inquiry. (Lumiqued v. Exevea, G.R No..
117565, Nov. 18, 1997)
NOTE: The essence of due process in administrative
proceedings is the opportunity to explain one’s side or seek
a reconsideration of the action or ruling complained of. As
long as the parties are given the opportunity to be heard
before judgment is rendered, the demands of due process
are sufficiently met. What is offensive to due process is the
denial of the opportunity to be heard.
(Flores v.
Montemayor, G.R. No. 170146, June 6, 2011)
Quantum of proof required in administrative
Only substantial evidence – that amount of relevant
evidence that a reasonable mind might accept as
adequate to support a conclusion.
Effect of non-observance of notice and hearing
As a rule, it will invalidate the administrative
proceedings. A failure to comply with the
requirements may result in a failure to acquire
NOTE: The right against self-incrimination may be invoked in
administrative proceedings. (Cabal v. Kapunan, G.R. No. L19052, December 29, 1962)
NOTE: Right to notice may be waived.
Q: Does administrative due process always entail
notice and hearing prior to the deprivation of a right?
Administrative appeal
Review by a higher agency of decisions rendered by an
administrative agency, commenced by petition of an
interested party.
A: No. A hearing may occur after the deprivation.
What the law prohibits is not the absence of previous
notice but the absolute absence thereof and the lack
of opportunity to be heard.
NOTE: Under the 1987 Administrative Code, administrative
appeals from a decision of an agency are taken to the
Department Head, unless such appeal is governed by a
special law.
NOTE: There has been no denial of due process if any
irregularity in the premature issuance of the assailed
decision has been remedied by an order giving the petitions
the right to participate in the hearing of the MR. The
opportunity granted by, technically, allowing petitioners to
finally be able to file their comment in the case, resolves the
procedural irregularity previously inflicted upon petitioners.
(Nasecore v. ERC, G.R. No. 190795, July 6, 2011)
Urgency of immediate action
Tentativeness of administrative action
Grant or revocation of licenses or permits to
operate certain businesses affecting public order
or morals
Summary abatement of nuisance per se which
affects safety of persons or property
Preventive suspension of public officer or
employee facing administrative charges
Cancellation of a passport of a person sought for
criminal prosecution
Summary proceedings of distraint and levy upon
property of a delinquent taxpayer
Replacement of a temporary or acting appointee
Right was previously offered but not claimed
Administrative review
Exceptions to the non-applicability of res judicata in
administrative proceedings
Administrative appeals are not the only way by which
a decision of an administrative agency may be
reviewed. A superior officer or department head may
upon his or her own volition review a subordinate’s
decision pursuant to the power of control.
Administrative reviews by a superior officer are,
however, subject to the caveat that a final and
executory decision is not included within the power of
control, and hence can no longer be altered by
administrative review.
NOTE: It is well settled that findings of fact of quasi-judicial
agencies, such as the COA, are generally accorded respect
and even finality by this Court, if supported by substantial
evidence, in recognition of their expertise on the specific
matters under their jurisdiction. (Reyna v. Commission on
Audit, G.R. No. 167219, February 8, 2011)
Different kinds of administrative appeal and review
1. Which inheres in the relation of administrative
superior to administrative subordinate
2. Embraced in statutes which provide for
determination to be made by a particular officer
or body subject to appeal, review or
redetermination by another officer or body in the
same agency or in the same administrative
3. In which the statute makes or attempts to make a
court a part of the administrative scheme by
providing in terms or effect that the court, on
review of the action of an administrative agency.
4. In which the statute provides that an order made
by a division of a commission or board has the
same force and effect as if made by the subject to
a rehearing by the commission.
5. In which the statute provides for an appeal to an
officer on an appeal to the head of the
department or agency.
6. Embraced in statutes which provide for appeal at
the highest level namely, the president. (De Leon,
page 311)
Power of administrative agencies to better enable
them to exercise their quasi-judicial authority. It
consists of the following:
Enforcement of administrative decisions
Naturalization proceedings or those involving
citizenship and immigration;
Labor relations
Family relations, personal status or condition, and
capacity of persons
Enabling – Permits the doing of an act which the
law undertakes to regulate and which would be
unlawful without governmental orders.
Directing – Orders the doing or performing of
particular acts to ensure the compliance with the
law and are often exercised for corrective
Dispensing – To relax the general operation of a
law or to exempt from general prohibition, or to
relieve an individual or a corporation from an
affirmative duty.
Examining – This is also called as investigatory
power. It requires production of books, papers,
etc., the attendance of witnesses and compelling
the testimony.
Summary – Power to apply compulsion of force
against persons or property to effectuate a legal
purpose without judicial warrants to authorize
such actions.
As provided for by law
Through the court’s intervention
Exceptions to the rule that findings of facts of
administrative agencies are binding on the courts
Non-applicability of the doctrine of res judicata
The doctrine of res judicata applies only to judicial or
quasi-judicial proceedings and not to the exercise of
purely administrative functions. Administrative
proceedings are non-litigious and summary in nature;
hence, res judicata does not apply. (Nasipit Lumber vs
NLRC, 1989)
Findings are vitiated by fraud, imposition, or
Procedure which led to factual findings is irregular
Palpable errors are committed
Factual findings not supported by evidence
Grave abuse of discretion, arbitrariness, or
capriciousness is manifest
When expressly allowed by statute; and
Political and International Law
Error in appreciation of the pleadings and in the
interpretation of the documentary evidence
presented by the parties
charter, membership, statutory exemption or other
form of permission, or regulation of the exercise of a
right or privilege. (Sec. 2(10), 1987 Administrative
Investigatory power
Power to inspect, secure, or require the disclosure of
information by means of accounts, records, reports,
statements and testimony of witnesses. This power is
implied and not inherent in administrative agencies.
Includes agency process involving the grant, renewal,
withdrawal, limitation, amendment, modification or
conditioning of a license. (Sec. 2(11), 1987
Administrative Code)
Q: Is the power to issue subpoena inherent in
administrative bodies?
NOTE: Except in cases of willful violation of pertinent laws,
rules and regulations or when public security, health, or
safety requires otherwise, no license may be withdrawn,
suspended, revoked or annulled without notice and hearing.
(Sec. 17, 1987 Administrative Code)
A: No. It is settled that these bodies may summon
witnesses and require the production of evidence only
when duly allowed by law, and always only in
connection with the matter they are authorized to
Nature of an administrative agency’s act if it is
empowered by a statute to revoke a license for noncompliance or violation of agency regulations
Q: Do administrative agencies have the inherent
power to declare persons in contempt?
For procedural purposes, an administrative action is
not a purely administrative act if it is dependent upon
the ascertainment of facts by the administrative
agency. Where a statute empowers an agency to
revoke a license for non-compliance with or violation
of agency regulations, the administrative act is of a
judicial nature, since it depends upon the
ascertainment of the existence of certain past or
present facts upon which a decision is to be made and
rights and liabilities determined.
A: No. The power to punish for contempt is not an
inherent right by the administrative body. It must be
expressly conferred upon by the body, and
additionally, must be used only in connection with its
quasi-judicial as distinguished from its purely
administrative or routinary functions.
NOTE: If there is no express grant, the agency must invoke
the aid of the RTC.
Q: May administrative agencies issue warrants of
arrest or administrative searches?
Rate-fixing power
A: GR: Administrative agencies cannot issue warrants
of arrest. Under the 1987 Constitution, only a judge
may issue warrants.
Power usually delegated by the legislature to
administrative agencies for the latter to fix the rates
which public utility companies may charge the public.
XPN: In cases of deportation of illegal and undesirable
aliens, whom the President or the Commissioner of
Bureau of Immigration and Deportation may order
arrested following a final order of deportation.
(Salazar v. Achacoso, G.R. No. 81510, March 14, 1990)
It means any charge to the public for a service open to
all and upon the same terms, including individual or
joint rates, tolls, classification or schedules thereof, as
well as communication, mileage, kilometrage and
other special rates which shall be imposed by law or
regulation to be observed and followed by a person.
Sec. 2(3), 1987 Administrative Code
Licensing power
The action of an administrative agency in granting or
denying, or in suspending or revoking, a license,
permit, franchise, or certificate of public convenience
and necessity.
NOTE: Fixing rates is essentially legislative but may be
delegated. (Philippine Inter-Island v. CA, G.R. No. 100481,
January 22, 1997)
Includes the whole or any part of any agency’s permit,
certificate, passport, clearance, approval, registration,
Rate-fixing procedure
fixing order, temporary or provisional though it may
be, is not exempt from the procedural requirements of
notice and hearing when prescribed by statute, as well
as the requirement of reasonableness.
The administrative agencies perform this function
either by issuing rules and regulations in the exercise
of their quasi-legislative power or by issuing orders
affecting a specified person in the exercise of its quasijudicial power.
Q: May the delegated power to fix rates be redelegated?
NOTE: In the fixing of rates, no rule or final order shall be
valid unless the proposed rates shall have been published in
a newspaper of general circulation at least 2 weeks before
the first hearing thereon. (Sec. 9, 1987 Administrative Code)
Fixing of rates may either be a legislative or adjudicative
A: The power delegated to an administrative agency to
fix rates cannot, in the absence of a law authorizing it,
be delegated to another. This is expressed in the
maxim, potestas delagata non delegari potest.
(Kilusang Mayo Uno Labor Center v. Garcia, Jr., 39
SCRA386, 1994)
Q: If the power to fix rates is exercised as a legislative
function, are notice and hearing required?
Requirements for the delegation of the power to
ascertain facts to be valid
A: Where the rules and/or rates laid down are meant
to apply to all enterprises of a given kind throughout
the country, they may partake of a legislative
character. If the fixing of rates were a legislative
function, the giving of prior notice and hearing to the
affected parties is not a requirement of due process,
except where the legislature itself requires it.
The law delegating the power to determine some facts
or state of things upon which the law may take effect
or its operation suspended must provide the standard,
fix the limits within which the discretion may be
exercised, and define the conditions therefor. Absent
these requirements, the law and the rules issued
thereunder are void, the former being an undue
delegation of legislative power and the latter being the
exercise of rule-making without legal basis. (U.S. v. Ang
Tang Ho, 43 Phil. 1, 1992)
Q: What if it is exercised as a quasi-judicial function?
A: Where the rules and the rate imposed apply
exclusively to a particular party, based upon a finding
of fact, then its function is quasi-judicial in character.
Q: Does a fact-finding quasi-judicial body have the
power to take into consideration the result of its own
observation and investigation of the matter
submitted to it for decision?
As regards rates prescribed by an administrative
agency in the exercise of its quasi-judicial function,
prior notice and hearing are essential to the validity of
such rates. But an administrative agency may be
empowered by law to approve provisionally, when
demanded by urgent public need, rates of public
utilities without a hearing.
A: Yes. A fact-finding quasi-judicial body (e.g., Land
Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board)
whose decisions (on questions regarding certificate of
public convenience) are influenced not only by the
facts as disclosed by the evidence in the case before it
but also by the reports of its field agents and
inspectors that are periodically submitted to it, has the
power to take into consideration the result of its own
observation and investigation of the matter submitted
to it for decision, in connection with other evidence
presented at the hearing of the case (Pantranco South
Express, Inc. v Board of Transportation, G.R. No. L49664, November 22, 1990)
Q: In case of a delegation of rate-fixing power, what
is the only standard which the legislature is required
to prescribe for the guidance of administrative
A: That the rate be reasonable and just. (American
Tobacco Co. v Director of Patents, 67 SCRA 287, 1975)
Q: In the absence of an express requirement as to
reasonableness, may the standard be implied?
Judicial review
A: Yes. In any case, the rates must both be nonconfiscatory and must have been established in the
manner prescribed by the legislature. Even in the
absence of an express requirement as to
reasonableness, this standard may be implied. A rate-
Re-examination or determination by the courts in the
exercise of their judicial power in an appropriate case
instituted by a party aggrieved thereby as to whether
the questioned act, rule, or decision has been validly
Political and International Law
or invalidly issued or whether the same should be
nullified, affirmed or modified.
knowledge, expertise, and experience. The courts
ordinarily accord respect if not finality to factual
findings of administrative tribunals.
NOTE: The mere silence of the law does not necessarily imply
that judicial review is unavailable.
XPN: If findings are not supported by substantial
Requisites of judicial review of administrative action
Administrative action must have been completed
(principle of finality of administrative action); and
Administrative remedies must have been
administrative remedies.)
Limitations on judicial review
Final and executory decisions cannot be made the
subject of judicial review.
Administrative acts involving a political question
are beyond judicial review, except when there is
an allegation that there has been grave abuse of
Courts are generally bound by the findings of fact
of an administrative agency.
Questions of Law – administrative decisions may
be appealed to the courts independently of
legislative permission. It may be appealed even
against legislative prohibition because the
judiciary cannot be deprived of its inherent power
to review all decisions on questions of law.
Mixed (law and fact) – when there is a mixed
question of law and fact and the court cannot
separate the elements to see clearly what and
where the mistake of law is, such question is
treated as question of fact for purposes of review
and the courts will not ordinarily review the
decision of the administrative tribunal.
Doctrine of Primary Jurisdiction or Doctrine of Prior
NOTE: Courts will not render a decree in advance of
administrative action. Such action would be rendered
Under the principle of primary jurisdiction, courts
cannot or will not determine a controversy involving
question within the jurisdiction of an administrative
body prior to the decision of that question by the
administrative tribunal where the:
It is not for the court to stop an administrative officer from
performing his statutory duty for fear that he will perform it
Doctrine of Ripeness for Review
It is similar to that of exhaustion of administrative
remedies except that it applies to the rule making and
to administrative action which is embodied neither in
rules and regulations nor in adjudication or final order.
Application of the doctrine of ripeness of review
NOTE: In such instances, relief must first be obtained in
administrative proceeding before a remedy will be supplied
by the courts even though the matter is within the proper
jurisdiction of a court. The judicial process is accordingly
suspended pending referral of the claim to the
administrative agency for its view.
When the interest of the plaintiff is subjected to
or imminently threatened with substantial injury.
If the statute is self-executing.
When a party is immediately confronted with the
problem of complying or violating a statute and
there is a risk of criminal penalties.
When plaintiff is harmed by the vagueness of the
Rationale for the doctrine:
1. Take full advantage of administrative expertness;
2. Attain uniformity of application of regulatory laws
which can be secured only if determination of the
issue is left to the administrative body
Questions reviewable by the courts
Questions of fact
GR: Courts will not disturb the findings of
administrative agencies acting within the
parameters of their own competence, special
Question demands administrative determination
requiring special knowledge, experience and
services of the administrative tribunal;
Question requires determination of technical and
intricate issues of a fact;
Uniformity of ruling is essential to comply with
purposes of the regulatory statute administered
Instances where the doctrine finds no application
By the court's determination, the legislature did
not intend that the issues be left solely to the
initial determination of the administrative body.
The issues involve purely questions of law.
Courts and administrative bodies have concurrent
Exceptions to the application of the doctrine
Q: Can the court motu proprio raise the issue of
primary jurisdiction?
A: Yes. The court may motu proprio raise the issue of
primary jurisdiction and its invocation cannot be
waived by the failure of the parties to argue it, as the
doctrine exists for the proper distribution of power
between judicial and administrative bodies and not
for the convenience of the parties. In such case the
court may:
1. Suspend the judicial process pending referral of
such issues to the administrative body for its
review, or
2. If the parties would not be unfairly disadvantaged,
dismiss the case without prejudice. (Euro-Med
laboratories Phil. v. Province of Batangas, G.R No.
148706, July 17, 2006)
Doctrine of Exhaustion of Administrative Remedies
It calls for resort first to the appropriate administrative
authorities in the resolution of a controversy falling
under their jurisdiction and must first be appealed to
the administrative superiors up to the highest level
before the same may be elevated to the courts of
justice for review.
It will deprive the complainant of a cause of action,
which is a ground for a motion of dismiss.
Q: Is non-compliance with the doctrines of primary
jurisdiction or exhaustion of administrative remedies
a jurisdictional defect?
A: No. Non-compliance with the doctrine of primary
jurisdiction or doctrine of exhaustion of administrative
remedies is not jurisdictional for the defect may be
waived by a failure to assert the same at the earliest
opportune time.
Reasons for the doctrine
Violation of due process
When there is estoppel on the part of the
administrative agency concerned
When the issue involved is a purely legal question
When there is irreparable injury
When the administrative action is patently illegal
amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction
When the respondent is a Department Secretary
whose acts as an alter ego of the President bears
the implied and assumed approval of the latter
When the subject matter is a private land case
When it would be unreasonable
When no administrative review is provided by law
When the rule does not provide a plain, speedy,
and adequate remedy
When the issue of non-exhaustion of
administrative remedies has been rendered moot
When there are circumstances indicating the
urgency of judicial intervention
When it would amount to a nullification of a claim;
Where the rule of qualified political agency
applies. (Laguna CATV Network v. Maraan, G.R.
No. 139492, November 19, 2002)
Effect of non-exhaustion of administrative remedies
The premature invocation of court intervention is fatal
to one’s cause of action. Exhaustion of administrative
remedies is a prerequisite for judicial review; it is a
condition precedent which must be complied with.
available only if there is no other plain, speedy,
and adequate remedy.
To avail of administrative remedy entails lesser
expenses and provides for a speedier disposition
of controversies.
To enable the administrative superiors to correct
the errors committed by their subordinates.
Courts should refrain from disturbing the findings
of administrative bodies in deference to the
doctrine of separation of powers.
Courts should not be saddled with the review of
administrative cases.
Judicial review of administrative cases is usually
effected through special civil actions which are
Political and International Law
NOTE: Appeal to the CA is allowed because a quasi-judicial
agency is equivalent in rank with the RTC. (Rule 43, RoC)
Doctrine of primary jurisdiction v. Doctrine of
exhaustion of administrative remedies
Both deal with the proper relationships between
the courts and administrative agencies.
Applies where a case is Applies where a claim is
within the concurrent
cognizable in the first
jurisdiction of the court instance by an
and an administrative
administrative agency
agency but the
determination of the
case requires the
technical expertise of
the administrative
Although the matter is
Judicial interference is
within the jurisdiction
withheld until the
of the court, it must
administrative process
yield to the jurisdiction has been completed
of the administrative
Doctrine of Finality of Administrative Action
It provides that no resort to courts will be allowed
unless administrative action has been completed and
there is nothing left to be done in the administrative
Instances where the doctrine finds no application
To grant relief to preserve the status quo pending
further action by the administrative agency
When it is essential to the protection of the rights
asserted from the injuries threatened
Where an administrative officer assumes to act in
violation of the Constitution and other laws
Where such order is not reviewable in any other
way and the complainant will suffer great and
obvious damage if the order is carried out
Interlocutory order affecting the merits of a
Order made in excess of power, contrary to
specific prohibition in the statute governing the
agency and thus operating as a deprivation of a
right assured by the statute
When review is allowed by statutory provisions.
iii. for Party – List Representatives
b. Local Elections—
i. For Members of HOR
ii. Provincial Officials
iii. City Officials
iv. Municipal Officials
c. Barangay Elections
d. ARRM Elections—
i. For Regional Governor
ii. Regional Vice Governor
iii. Regional Assemblymen
e. Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) Elections
Right of Suffrage
It is the right to vote in the election of officers chosen
by the people and in the determination of questions
submitted to the people. It includes:
1. Election
2. Plebiscite
3. Initiative and
4. Referendum
NOTE: The right to suffrage is not an absolute right. Needless
to say, the exercise of the right of suffrage, as in the
enjoyment of all other rights, is subject to existing
substantive and procedural requirements embodied in our
Constitution, statute books and other repositories of law.
(AKBAYAN-YOUTH v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 147066, March 26,
It is when there is failure of election on the
scheduled date of regular election in a particular
place or which is conducted to fill up certain
vacancies, as provided by law
a. Plebiscite—electoral process by which an
initiative on the Constitution is approved or
rejected by the people.
b. Initiative—power of the people to propose
amendments to the Constitution or to
propose and enact legislations through
election called for the purpose
i. Initiative on the Constitution
ii. Initiative on Statutes
iii. Initiative on Local Legislation
c. Referendum—power of the electorate to
approve or reject a piece of legislation
through an election called for the purpose.
i. Referendum on Statutes
ii. Referendum on Local Laws
d. Recall—mode of removal of an elective public
officer by the people before the end of his
term of office.
It is the selection of candidates to public office by
popular vote of the people.
Purpose of an election
To enable the electorate to choose the men and
women who would run their government, whether
national, provincial, city, municipal or barangay. (Teves
v. Comelec, G.R. No. L-5150, November 8, 1951)
Components of an election
Choice or selection of candidates to public office
by popular vote
Holding of electoral campaign
Conduct of the polls
Listing of votes
Act of casting and receiving the ballots from the
Counting the ballots
Making the election returns
Proclaiming the winning candidates
Rules on construction of election laws
Laws for conduct of
Before the election:
After the election:
Types of elections
Laws for
Procedural rules
A. Regular election – refers to an election
participated in by those who possess the right of
suffrage, are not otherwise disqualified by law,
and who are registered voters.
Special election – one held to fill a vacancy in office
before the expiration of the term for which the
incumbent was elected.
Mandatory and strictly
Liberally construed in
favor of ascertaining the
will of the elections
National Election—
i. for President and VP
ii. for Senators
Political and International Law
Commencement of election period
90 days before the day of the election and shall end 30
days thereafter. (Sec. 3, BP 881 OEC)
Registration requirement
Registration does not confer the right to vote. “It is but
a condition precedent to the exercise of the right to
vote. Registration is a regulation, not a qualification.”
(Yra v. Abano, G.R. No. L-30187, November 15, 1928)
Qualifications for the exercise of suffrage
Filipino citizenship
At least 18 years of age
Resident of the Philippines for at least one year
Resident of the place where he proposes to vote
for at least 6 months; and
Not otherwise disqualified by law (Sec. 1, Art. V,
1987 Constitution)
A place to which, whenever absent for business or for
pleasure, one intends to return, and depends on facts
and circumstances in the sense that they disclose
intent. (Romualdez-Marcos v. COMELEC, G.R. No.
119976, September 18, 1995)
NOTE: These qualifications are continuing requirements.
Congress may not add qualifications but can provide for
procedural requirements and disqualifications. However,
the disqualifications must not amount to qualifications.
Residence for election purposes
It implies the factual relationship of an individual to a
certain place. It is the physical presence of a person in
a given area, community or country. For election
purposes the concepts of residence and domicile are
dictated by the peculiar criteria of political laws. As
these concepts have evolved in our election law, what
has clearly and unequivocally emerged is the fact that
residence for election purposes is used synonymously
with domicile. (Ibid.)
Procedural qualifications
As to the procedural limitation, the right of a citizen to
vote is necessarily conditioned upon certain
procedural requirements he must undergo: among
others, the process of registration. Specifically, a
citizen in order to be qualified to exercise his right to
vote, in addition to the minimum requirements set by
the fundamental charter, is obliged by law to register,
at present, under the provisions of RA 8189, otherwise
known as the “Voter’s Registration Act of 1996.”
(Akbayan-Youth v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 147066, March
26, 2001)
Effect of transfer of residence
Any person, who transfers residence solely by reason
of his occupation, profession or employment in private
or public service, education, etc., shall not be deemed
to have lost his original residence. (Asistio v. Aguirre,
G.R. No. 191124, April 27, 2010)
Persons disqualified to vote
Persons sentenced by final judgment to suffer
imprisonment for not less than one year, unless
pardoned or granted amnesty; but right is
reacquired upon expiration of 5 years after service
of sentence
Any person who, being a registered voter, registers
anew without filing an application for cancellation of
his previous registration. (Sec. 26 (y)(6), OEC)
Q: Eisel registered as a voter in Marawi on 26 July
2003. Three days after, Eisel again registered as a
voter in Marantao, without first cancelling her
registration in Marawi; and on 28 March 2007, Eisel
filed her COC declaring that she was a registered
voter in Marantao and eligible to run as a candidate
for the position of mayor of said municipality. Is she
qualified to run for such position in Marantao?
Conviction by final judgment of any of the
a. Crime involving disloyalty to the government
b. Violation against national security
c. Firearms laws
But right is reacquired upon expiration of 5 years
after service of sentence.
A: No. Her prior registration makes her subsequent
registration null and void. She cannot be considered a
registered voter in Marantao and thus she made a
Insanity or incompetence declared by competent
authority (Sec. 118, BP 881 OEC)
false representation in her CoC when she claimed to
be one. If a candidate states a material representation
in the COC that is false, the COMELEC is empowered to
deny due course to or cancel the CoC. The person
whose COC is denied due course or cancelled under
Sec. 78 of the OEC is not treated as a candidate at all,
as if such person never filed a COC. However, although
Eisel’s registration in Marantao is void, her registration
in Marawi still subsists. She may be barred from voting
or running for mayor in the former, but she may still
exercise her right to vote, or even run for an elective
post, in the latter. (Maruhom v. COMELEC, G.R. No.
179430, July 27, 2009)
RA 8189. This leads to only one conclusion: that Allen,
not having demonstrated that he duly accomplished
an application for registration, is not a registered
voter. Hence, he must be disqualified to run for Mayor.
(Gunsi Sr. v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 168792, February 23,
Q: Sheldon, while of legal age and of sound mind, is
illiterate. He has asked your advice on how he can
vote in the coming election for his brother is running
for mayor. This will be the first time Sheldon will vote
and he has never registered as a voter before. What
advice will you give him on the procedure he needs
to follow in order to be able to vote?
Q: Are double registrants still qualified to vote?
A: The Constitution provides that until Congress shall
have provided otherwise, illiterate and disabled voters
shall be allowed to vote under existing laws and
regulations. (Art, V, Sec. 2) It is necessary for any
qualified voter to register in order to vote. (OEC, Sec.
115) In the case of illiterate and disabled voters, their
voter's affidavit may be prepared by any relative
within the fourth civil degree of consanguinity or
affinity or by any member of the board of election
inspectors who shall prepare the affidavit in
accordance with the data supplied by the applicant.
(Sec. 14, RA 8189)
A: Yes. Double registrants are still qualified to vote
provided that COMELEC has to make a determination
on which registration is valid, and which is void.
COMELEC could not consider both registrations valid
because it would then give rise to the anomalous
situation where a voter could vote in two precincts at
the same time. COMELEC laid down the rule in Minute
Resolution No. 00-1513 that while the first registration
of any voter subsists, any subsequent registration
thereto is void ab initio. (Maruhom v. COMELEC, G.R.
No. 179430, July 27, 2009)
Q: Wil filed a petition for the cancellation of the COC
of Allen. Essentially, Wil sought the disqualification of
Allen for Mayor of South Upi alleging that Allen was
not a registered voter in the Municipality of South
Upi since he failed to sign his application for
registration, and that the unsigned application for
registration has no legal effect. In refutation, Allen
asseverated that his failure to sign his application for
registration did not affect the validity of his
registration since he possesses the qualifications of a
voter set forth in the OEC as amended by Sec. 9 of RA
8189. Wil insists that the signature in the application
for registration is indispensable for its validity as it is
an authentication and affirmation of the data
appearing therein. Should Allen be disqualified?
System of continuing registration
GR: It is a system where the application of registration
of voters shall be conducted daily in the office hours of
the election officer during regular office hours.
XPN: No registration shall be conducted during the
period starting 120 days before a regular election and
90 days before a special election. (Sec. 8, RA 8189)
Q: On Nov. 12, 2008, COMELEC issued Resolution
8514 setting Dec. 2, 2008 to Dec.15, 2009 as the
period of continuing voter registration using the
biometrics process in all areas except ARMM.
Subsequently, COMELEC issued Resolution 8585 on
February 12, 2009 adjusting the deadline of voter
registration for the May 10, 2010 national and local
elections to Oct. 31, 2009 instead of Dec. 15, 2009 as
previously fixed by Resolution 8514. Petitioners
challenged the validity of COMELEC Resolution 8585
and seek the declaration of its nullity. Petitioners
further contend that COMELEC Resolution 8585 is an
encroachment on the legislative power of Congress
as it amends the system of continuing voter
registration under Sec. 8 of RA 8189. Is COMELEC
Resolution 8585 valid? Differentiate from the case of
Akbayan-Youth v. COMELEC.
A: Yes. RA 8189 (The Voter’s Registration Act of 1996)
specifically provides that an application for
registration shall contain specimen signatures of the
applicant as well as his/her thumbprints, among
others. The evidence shows that Allen failed to sign
very important parts of the application, which refer to
the oath which Allen should have taken to validate and
swear to the veracity of the contents appearing in the
application for registration. Plainly, from the
foregoing, the irregularities surrounding Allen’s
application for registration eloquently proclaims that
he did not comply with the minimum requirements of
Political and International Law
A: In the present case, the Court finds no ground to
hold that the mandate of continuing voter registration
cannot be reasonably held within the period provided
by RA 8189 (Absentee Voting), Sec.8, which is daily
during the office hours, except during the period
starting 120 days before the May 10,2010 regular
elections. There is thus no occasion for the COMELEC
to exercise its power to fix other dates or deadlines
Persons qualified to vote under the absentee voting
All citizens of the Philippines abroad, who are not
otherwise disqualified by law, at least eighteen (18)
years of age on the day of the elections, may vote for
president, vice-president, senators and party-list
representatives. (Sec. 4, RA 9189)
Q: May “duals” or dual citizens be allowed to vote
under the Overseas Absentee Voting Act of 2003?
The present case differs significantly from the
Akbayan-Youth v. COMELEC. In the said case, the Court
held that the COMELEC did not abuse its discretion in
denying the request of the therein petitioners for an
extension of the Dec. 27, 2000 deadline of voter
registration for the May 14, 2001 elections. For the
therein petitioners filed their petition with the court
within the 120-day period for the conduct of voter
registration under Sec. 8, RA 8189, and sought the
conduct of a two-day registration of February 17, and
18, 2001, clearly within the 120-day prohibited period.
A: Yes. There is no provision in the dual citizenship law
- RA 9225 - requiring "duals" to actually establish
residence and physically stay in the Philippines first
before they can exercise their right to vote. On the
contrary, RA 9225, in implicit acknowledgment that
“duals” are most likely non-residents, grants under its
Sec. 5(1) the same right of suffrage as that granted an
absentee voter under RA 9189. It cannot be
overemphasized that RA 9189 aims, in essence, to
enfranchise as much as possible all overseas Filipinos
who, save for the residency requirements exacted of
an ordinary voter under ordinary conditions, are
qualified to vote. (Lewis v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 162759,
August 4, 2006)
The clear import of the Court’s pronouncement in
Akbayan-Youth is that had therein petitioners filed
their petition – and sought an extension date that was
– before the 120-day prohibitive period, their prayer
would have been granted pursuant to the mandate of
RA 8189 (Absentee Voting). In the present case, as
reflected earlier, both the dates of filing of the petition
(October 30, 2009) and the extension sought (until
January 9, 2010) are prior to the 120 day prohibitive
period. The Court therefore, finds no legal impediment
to the extension prayed for. (Kabataan Partylist v.
COMELEC, G.R. No. 189868, December 15, 2009)
Persons disqualified from voting under the absentee
voting law
Absentee voting
It is a process by which qualified citizens of the
Philippines abroad exercise their right to vote
pursuant to the constitutional mandate that Congress
shall provide a system for absentee voting by qualified
Filipinos abroad. (Sec. 2, Art. V, 1987 Constitution)
Absentee voting is an exception to the six month/one
year residency requirement. (Macalintal v. Romulo,
G.R. No. 157013, July 10, 2003)
NOTE: However, any person disqualified to vote under
this subsection shall automatically acquire the right to
vote upon expiration of five (5) years after service of
sentence; Provided further, that the Commission may
take cognizance of final judgments issued by foreign
courts or tribunals only on the basis of reciprocity and
subject to the formalities and processes prescribed by
the Rules of Court on execution of judgments.
NOTE: The constitutionality of Sec. 18.5 of RA 9189
(Absentee Voting) is upheld with respect only to the
authority given to the COMELEC to proclaim the winning
candidates for the Senators and party-list representatives
but not as to the power to canvass votes and proclaim the
winning candidates for President and Vice-president. (Ibid.)
Those who have lost their Filipino citizenship in
accordance with Philippine laws;
Those who have expressly renounced their
Philippine citizenship and who have pledged
allegiance to a foreign country;
Those who have committed and are convicted in
a final judgment by a court or tribunal of an
offense punishable by imprisonment of not less
than one (1) year, including those who have
committed and been found guilty of Disloyalty as
defined under Art. 137 of the Revised Penal Code,
such disability not having been removed by
plenary pardon or amnesty;
An immigrant or a permanent resident who is
recognized as such in the host country
NOTE: An immigrant or permanent resident may vote
if he/she executes, upon registration, an affidavit
prepared for the purpose by the Commission declaring
that he/she shall resume actual physical permanent
residence in the Philippines not later than three (3)
years from approval of his/her registration under this
Act. Such affidavit shall also state that he/she has not
applied for citizenship in another country. Failure to
return shall be the cause for the removal of the name
of the immigrant or permanent resident from the
National Registry of Absentee Voters and his/her
permanent disqualification to vote in absentia.
Thereafter, voting by mail in any country shall be
allowed only upon review and approval of the Joint
Congressional Oversight Committee. (Sec. 17.1, RA
9189 Absentee Voting Law)
Any citizen of the Philippines abroad previously
declared insane or incompetent by competent
authority in the Philippines or abroad, as verified
by the Philippine embassies, consulates or foreign
service establishments concerned
Q: Can the canvass of the overseas absentee votes
delay the proclamation of winners?
A: No, if the outcome of the election will not be
affected by the results thereof. Notwithstanding the
foregoing, the COMELEC is empowered to order the
proclamation of winning candidates despite the fact
that the scheduled election has not yet taken place in
a particular country or countries, if the holding of
elections therein has been rendered impossible by
events, factors, and circumstances peculiar to such
country or countries, and which events, factors and
circumstances are beyond the control or influence of
the COMELEC. (Sec. 18, RA 9189 Absentee Voting Law)
NOTE: Unless such competent authority subsequently
certifies that such person is no longer insane or
incompetent. (Sec. 5, Absentee Voting Law)
Q: May an immigrant or permanent resident (green
card holder) abroad be qualified to run for an elective
position in the Philippines?
A: No. Acquisition of a lawful permanent resident
status abroad amounts to an abandonment and
renunciation of one’s status as a resident of the
Philippines; it constituted a change from one’s
domicile of origin to a new domicile of choice.
(Ugdoracion v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 179851, April 18,
Local absentee voting
It refers to a system of voting whereby government
officials and employees, including members of the
Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), and the
Philippine National Police (PNP) as well as members
of the media, media practitioners including their
technical and support staff (media voters) pursuant
to the aforementioned Comelec En Banc Resolution
who are duly registered voters, are allowed to vote
for the , national positions, i.e. President, VicePresident, Senators and Party-List Representatives in
places where they are not registered voters but
where they are temporarily assigned to perform
election duties on election day as provided for
under Executive Order No. 157 and Republic Act No.
7166 (Sec. 1(a), COMELEC Resolution 9637, 13
February 2013)
Manner of registration for absentee voters
It shall be done in person. (Sec. 6, RA 9189, Absentee
Voting Law)
Process of absentee voting
Where there exists a technically established
identification system that would preclude
multiply or proxy voting; and
Where the system of reception and custody of
mailed ballots in the embassies, consulates and
other foreign service establishments concerned
are adequate and well-secured.
The overseas absentee voter shall personally
accomplish his/her ballot at the embassy,
consulate or other foreign service establishment
that has jurisdiction over the country where
he/she temporarily resides or at any polling place
designated and accredited by the Commission.
(Sec. 16, RA 9189 Absentee Voting Law)
The overseas absentee voter may also vote by
mail. (RA 9189 Absentee Voting Law)
Persons qualified to register/vote in local absentee
Voting by mail
Voting by mail may be allowed in countries that satisfy
the following conditions:
1. Where the mailing system is fairly well-developed
and secure to prevent the occasion of fraud
Government officials and employees
Members of the PNP
Members of the AFP
Members of the media, media practitioners, and
including their technical and support staff who
are actively angaged in
the pursuit of
Political and International Law
information gathering and reporting or
distribution, in any manner or form, including, but
not limited to the following:
i. Print Journalists;
ii. Television Journalists;
iii. Photo Journalists;
iv. Online Journalists;
v. Radio Journalists;
vi. Documentary makers;
vii. Television/Radio Production
Convicted by final judgment to suffer
imprisonment not less than 1 year
b. Disloyalty
c. Insanity
a. Loss of citizenship
b. Failed to vote for 2 successive preceding
regular elections
c. Registration was ordered excluded by the
Grounds for the annulment of Book of voters
Duly registered voters
On election day, in case of government officials,
members of the PNP and AFP, they are assigned
temporarily to perform election duties in places
where they are not registered voters;
In case of media voters, they will not be able to
vote due to the performance of their functions in
covering and reporting the conduct of elections.
(Sec. 2, COMELEC Resolution 9637, 13 February
Kinds of registration system
Courts which have jurisdiction over inclusion and
exclusion proceedings
Book of voters
Classified as permanent whereby each precinct shall
have a permanent list of all registered voters residing
within the territorial jurisdiction of the precinct.
MTC - original and exclusive
RTC - appellate jurisdiction
SC - appellate jurisdiction over RTC on question of
Persons who may file a petition for inclusion or
1. Any private person whose application was
disapproved by the Election Registration Board
2. Those whose names were stricken out from the
list of voters
Grounds for the alteration of Book of voters
Similar Irregularity
Contains data that are statistically improbable
Exclusion/ Inclusion
Cancellation of Registration in case of death
Annulment of Book of Voters
New Voters
Transfer of residence
1. Any registered voter in the city or municipality
2. Representative of political party
3. Election officer
Removal from the registration records from the
precinct books of voters and places the same, properly
marked and dated in indelible ink, in the inactive file
after entering the cause of deactivation.
Period for filing a petition in an inclusion or exclusion
Grounds for deactivation
INCLUSION: Any day except 105 days before regular
election or 75 days before a special election.
(COMELEC Reso. No. 8820)
Those which would disqualify you as a voter:
EXCLUSION: Anytime except 100 days before a regular
election or 65 days before a special election.
(COMELEC Reso. No. 9021)
conduct of government and which, as the most
immediate means of securing their adoption, regularly
nominates and supports certain of its leaders and
members as candidate in public office.
Grounds for Inclusion and Exclusion Proceedings
NOTE: To acquire juridical personality and to entitle it to
rights and privileges granted to political parties, it must be
registered with COMELEC. (Sec. 3 (c), RA 7941)
1. Application for registration has been disapproved
by the board
2. Name has been stricken out
Sectoral party
1. Not Qualified for possessing disqualification
2. Flying voters
3. Ghost voters
Organized group of citizens belonging to any of the
sectors enumerated in Sec. 5, RA 7941 whose principal
advocacy pertains to the special interest and concerns
of their sector. (Sec. 3 (d), RA 7941)
Inapplicability of the doctrine of res judicata in
inclusion or exclusion proceedings
Sectoral organization
A group of citizens or a coalition of groups of citizens
who share similar physical attributes or
characteristics, employment, interests or concerns.
(Sec. 3 (e), RA 7941)
The proceedings for the exclusion or inclusion of
voters in the list of voters are summary in character.
Except for the right to remain in the list of voters or for
being excluded therefrom for the particular election in
relation to which the proceedings had been held, a
decision in an exclusion or inclusion proceeding, even
if final and unappealable, does not acquire the nature
of res judicata. In this sense, it does not operate as a
bar to any further action that a party may take
concerning the subject passed upon in the proceeding.
Thus, a decision in an exclusion proceeding would
neither be conclusive on the voter’s political status,
nor bar subsequent proceedings on his right to be
registered as a voter in any other election. (Domino v.
COMELEC, G.R. No. 134015, July 19, 1999)
Jurisdiction of COMELEC over political parties
Sec. 2(5), Art. IX-C of the Constitution grants the
Commission the power to register political parties. It
also has the power to require candidates to specify in
their certificates of candidacy their political affiliation,
allow political parties to appoint watchers, limit their
expenditures, and determine whether their
registrations should be cancelled in appropriate
proceedings. These powers necessarily include the
jurisdiction to resolve issues of political leadership in a
political party, and to ascertain the identity of political
party and its legitimate officers. (Palmares v.
COMELEC, G.R. No. 86177, August 11, 1989)
Q: Can a voter be excluded for stating a fake address?
A: No. The right to vote is a most precious political
right, as well as a bounden duty of every citizen,
enabling and requiring him to participate in the
process of government to ensure that it can truly be
said to derive its power solely from the consent of its
Grounds for the refusal and/or cancellation of
registration of national, regional or sectoral party,
organization or coalition
A citizen cannot be disenfranchised for the flimsiest of
reasons. Only on the most serious grounds, and upon
clear and convincing proof, may a citizen be deemed
to have forfeited this precious heritage of freedom.
(Asistio v. Aguirre, G.R. No. 191124, April 27, 2010)
Political party
Any organized group of citizens advocating an ideology
or platform, principles and policies for the general
It is a religious sect or denomination, organization
or association, organized for religious purposes
It advocates violence or unlawful means to seek
its goal
It is a foreign party or organization
It is receiving support from any foreign
government, foreign political party, foundation,
organization, whether directly or through any of
its officers or members or indirectly through third
parties for partisan election purposes
It violates or fails to comply with laws, rules or
regulations relating to elections
It declares untruthful statements in its petition
It has ceased to exist for at least one (1) year; or
Political and International Law
It fails to participate in the last two (2) preceding
elections or fails to obtain at least two per centum
(2%) of the votes cast under the party-list system
in the two (2) preceding elections for the
constituency in which it has registered. (Sec. 6, RA
Qualifications for President and Vice President of the
Natural-born citizen of the Philippines
Registered voter
Able to read and write
At least 40 years of age at the day of election
And a resident of the Philippines for at least ten
years immediately preceding such election. (Sec. 2
and 3, Art. VII, 1987 Constitution)
Qualifications of elective local officials
NOTE: When a candidate has not yet been disqualified by
final judgment during the election day and was voted for, the
votes cast in his favor cannot be declared stray. (Codilla v. De
Venecia, G.R. No. 150605, December 10, 2002)
Must be a citizen of the Philippines
A registered voter in the barangay, municipality,
city, or province or, in the case of a member of the
panlungsod, or sanggunian bayan, the district
where he intends to be elected
A resident therein for at least one (1) year
immediately preceding the day of the election
And able to read and write Filipino or any other
local language or dialect. (Sec. 39, RA 7160 Local
Government Code of the Philippines)
Effect of an unsworn renunciation of foreign
Failure to renounce foreign citizenship in accordance
with the exact tenor of Sec. 5(2) of RA 9225 renders a
dual citizen ineligible to run for and thus hold any
elective public office. (Condon v. COMELEC, G.R. No.
198742, August 10, 2012)
NOTE: Congress may not add to qualifications for elective
officials provided in the constitution. However they may do
so for elective officials not provided in the Constitution.
Grounds for disqualification of a candidate
Certificate of Candidacy (Coc)
Declared as incompetent or insane by competent
Convicted by final judgment for subversion,
insurrection, rebellion, or any offense for which
he has been sentenced to a penalty of 18 months
Convicted by final judgment for a crime involving
moral turpitude
Election offenses under Sec. 68 of the OEC
Committing acts of terrorism to enhance
Spending in his election campaign an amount in
excess of that allowed
Not possessing qualifications and possessing
disqualifications under the Local Government
Sentenced by final judgment for an offense
involving moral turpitude or for an offense
punishable by one year or more of imprisonment
within two years after serving sentence
Removed from office as a result of an
administrative case
Convicted by final judgment for violating the oath
of allegiance to the Republic
Dual citizenship (more specifically, dual
Fugitives from justice in criminal or non-political
cases here or abroad
Permanent residents in a foreign country or those
who have acquired the right to reside abroad and
continue to avail of the same right
Insane or feeble- minded
Nuisance candidate
Violation of Sec. 73 OEC with regard to COC
Violation of Sec. 78: material misrepresentation in
the COC
It is in the nature of a formal manifestation to the
whole world of the candidate’s political creed or lack
of political creed. (Sinaca v. Mula, 373 Phil. 896)
NOTE: A CoC may be amended before the elections, even
after the date of its filing.
Provisions of the election law on certificates of candidacy are
mandatory in terms. However, after the elections, they are
regarded as directory so as to give effect to the will of the
electorate. (Saya-Ang Sr. v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 155087,
November 28, 2003)
Purposes of the law in requiring the filing of
certificate of candidacy and in fixing the time limit
officials. This is because elected public officials, by the
very nature of their office, engage in partisan political
activities almost all year round, even outside of the
campaign period. Political partisanship is the
inevitable essence of a political office, elective
positions included. The equal protection of the law
clause in the Constitution is not absolute, but is subject
to reasonable classification. Substantial distinctions
clearly exist between elective officials and appointive
officials. The former occupy their office by virtue of the
mandate of the electorate. They are elected to an
office for a definite term and may be removed
therefrom only upon stringent conditions. On the
other hand, appointive officials hold their office by
virtue of their designation thereto by an appointing
authority. Some appointive officials hold their office in
a permanent capacity and are entitled to security of
tenure while others serve at the pleasure of the
appointing authority. (Quinto v. COMELEC, G.R.
189698, February 22, 2010)
1. Enable the voters to know, at least 60 days before
the regular election, the candidates among whom
they have to choose, and
2. Avoid confusion and inconvenience in the
tabulation of the votes cast. (Miranda v. Abaya,
G.R. No. 136351, July 28, 1999)
Effect of filing a CoC on the tenure of incumbent
government officials
Appointive official – Sec. 66 of the OEC provides
that any person holding an appointive office or
position, including active members of the Armed
Forces of the Philippines, and officers and
employees in GOCCs, shall be considered ipso
facto RESIGNED from his office upon the filing of
his CoC. Such resignation is irrevocable.
Elective official – No effect. The candidate shall
continue to hold office, whether he is running for
the same or a different position. (Sec. 14, Fair
Elections Act expressly repealed Sec. 67 of BP 881)
If after the last day for the filing of Certificates of
Candidacy, an official candidate of a duly registered
political party or coalition of political parties dies,
withdraws or is disqualified for any cause, he may be
substituted by a candidate belonging to, and
nominated by, the same political party. No substitute
shall be allowed for any independent candidate. (Sec.
15, COMELEC Resolution 9518, 11 September 2013)
It refers to any person aspiring for or seeking an
elective public office, who has filed a CoC by himself or
through an accredited political party, aggroupment or
coalition of parties (Sec. 79.(a), OEC)
Requisites for valid substitution
Q: When can a person be considered a candidate?
1. The substitute must belong to the same party
2. The deceased, disqualified or withdrawn
candidate must have duly file a valid CoC. (Ibid.)
A: Any person who files his CoC within the filing period
shall only be considered a candidate at the start of the
campaign period for which he filed his CoC.
Any person may thus file a CoC on any day within the
prescribed period for filing a CoC yet that person shall
be considered a candidate, for purposes of
determining one’s possible violations of election laws,
only during the campaign period. (Penera v. COMELEC,
G.R. No. 181613, November 25, 2009)
XPN: This does not include those cases where the CoC
of the person to be substituted had been denied due
course and canceled under Sec. 78 of the OEC.
Sec. 78 provides that a verified petition seeking to
deny due course or to cancel a CoC may be filed by the
person exclusively on the ground that any material
representation contained therein as required under
Sec. 74 hereof is false.
Q: Do the deemed-resigned provisions which are
applicable to appointive officials and not to elective
officials violate the equal protection clause of the
While the law enumerated the occasion where a
candidate may be validly substituted, there is no
mention of the case where a candidate is excluded not
only by disqualification but also by denial and
A: No. The legal dichotomy created by the Legislature
is a reasonable classification, as there are material and
significant distinctions between the two classes of
Political and International Law
cancellation of his CoC. (Ong v. Alegre, G.R. No.
163295, January 23, 2006)
Q: Al Espaldon filed his CoC, signifying his intent to
run for congressional office in the fourth district of
Leyte. Dexter Suyat filed a petition for denial of due
course and/or cancellation of Al’s CoC. The COMELEC
First Division disqualified Al without any qualification
for failure to comply with the one year residency
requirement. He was substituted by his wife,
appellee Camille Gonzales as the COMELEC En Banc
ruled that resolution of the First Division refers only
to disqualification and not to cancellation of CoC.
Camille won the congressional elections in 2010.
Again, Dexter filed a motion to reconsider which
remained unacted. CA Mindaro, appellant, filed a
petition for quo warranto before the House of
Representatives Electoral Tribunal. The HRET ruled in
favor of Camille. Does Al’s disqualification without
any qualification permit substitution of candidates?
Q: Henry Tamayo and Dexter Suyat filed their CoCs
for the position of Mayor of Lucena City. Dexter filed
a petition to disqualify Henry, alleging that Henry still
filed his CoC despite knowing that he had exceeded
the 3-term limit as Mayor of Lucena City. COMELEC
1st Division disqualified Henry. Camille Tamayo, the
wife of Henry, filed her own CoC in substitution of her
husband, Henry. Can Camille validly substitute her
A: No. A disqualified candidate may only be
substituted if he had a valid CoC in the first place
because, if the disqualified candidate did not have a
valid and seasonably filed CoC, he is and was not a
candidate at all. If a person was not a candidate, he
cannot be substituted under Sec. 77 of the OEC. If we
were to allow the so-called "substitute" to file a "new"
and "original" CoC beyond the period for the filing
thereof, it would be a crystalline case of unequal
protection of the law. Thus, there was no valid
candidate for Camille to substitute due to Henry’s
ineligibility. The existence of a valid CoC is therefore a
condition sine qua non for a disqualified candidate to
be validly substituted. (Talaga v. COMELEC, G.R. No.
196804, October 9, 2012)
A: No. Since there would be no candidate to speak of
under a denial of due course to and/or cancellation of
a CoC case, then there would be no candidate to be
As explained in the case of Miranda v. Abaya, a
candidate who is disqualified under Sec. 68 can be
validly substituted pursuant to Sec. 77 because he
remains· a candidate until disqualified; but a person
whose CoC has been denied due course to and/or
cancelled under Sec. 78 cannot be substituted because
he is not considered a candidate. Stated differently,
since there would be no candidate to speak of under a
denial of due course to and/or cancellation of a CoC
case, then there would be no candidate to be
substituted; the same does not obtain, however, in a
disqualification case since there remains to be a
candidate to be substituted, although his or her
candidacy is discontinued.
Q: Pedro Mahilig died while campaigning. His son
substituted him. Voters on the day of the election
wrote Pedro Mahilig instead of casting the same in
the name of his son, Garry Mahilig. Should the votes
be counted in favor of Garry?
A: Yes. As a general rule, the same will be considered
as stray votes but will not invalidate the whole ballot.
Exception is when the substitute carries the same
family name. (Sec. 12, RA 9006)
Case law dictates that if a petition prays for the denial
of due course to and/or cancellation of CoC and the
same is granted by the COMELEC without any
qualification, the cancellation of the candidate's CoC is
in order. This is precisely the crux of the Miranda ruling
wherein the Court, in upholding the COMELEC En
Banc's nullification of the substitution in that case,
decreed that the COMELEC Division's unqualified grant
of the petition necessarily included the denial of due
course to and/or cancellation of the candidate's CoC,
notwithstanding the use of the term "disqualified" in
the COMELEC Division's resolution, as the foregoing
was prayed for in the said petition. (Silverio R. Tagolino
v. House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal and Lucy
Marie Torres-Gomez, G.R. No. 202202, March 19,
Q: In the 1998 election, Mayor Aida already served 8
consecutive terms, yet she still filed a CoC. As a result,
Guifaya filed a disqualification case. COMELEC then
disqualified Aida and cancelled her CoC. The daughter
of Aida, Sachi, upon nomination of their political
party, filed a certificate of substitution. Sachi won.
Was the substitution valid?
A: No. COMELEC did not only disqualify Aida but also
cancelled her CoC. Therefore, she cannot be validly
substituted. A disqualified candidate may only be
substituted if he had a valid CoC because if the
disqualified candidate did not have a valid and
seasonably filed CoC, he is and was not a candidate at
all. (Miranda v. Abaya, G.R. No. 136351, July 28, 1999)
Q: Rueben Soriano, a winning but ineligible candidate
in a local election (for mayor or vice mayor), was
disqualified with finality after his proclamation due
to his citizenship. Rueben was alleged to have been
using his US passport even after he had executed an
Affidavit of Renunciation of his US citizenship. Can
Dexter Suyat, a candidate for the same position who
garnered the next highest vote be proclaimed as the
eligible winner?
receipt pursuant to Sec. 76, of the Election Code. The
COMELEC may not, by itself, without the proper
proceedings, deny due course to or cancel a CoC filed
in due form. (Luna v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 165983, April
24, 2007)
1. Nuisance candidates; (Sec. 69 of the OEC)
2. Petition to deny due course or to cancel a CoC;
(Sec. 78 of the OEC)
3. Filing of a disqualification case on any of the
grounds enumerated in Sec. 68, OEC.
A: Yes. The old doctrine was that the vice mayor shall
succeed the disqualified winning candidate, not the
candidate for the same position who had received the
next highest vote. In recent cases, SC ruled that a void
CoC cannot produce any legal effect. Thus, the votes
cast in favor of the ineligible candidate are not
considered at all in determining the winner of an
election. Knowledge by the electorate of a candidate’s
disqualification is not necessary before a qualified
candidate who placed second to a disqualified one can
be proclaimed as the winner. The second-placer in the
vote count is actually the first-placer among the
qualified candidates. Furthermore, that the
disqualified candidate has already been proclaimed
and has assumed office is of no moment. The
subsequent disqualification based on a substantive
ground that existed prior to the filing of the CoC voids
not only the CoC but also the proclamation. (Maquiling
v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 195649, April 16, 2013)
Q: Ka Dikko went to Laguna to file his CoC. The
election officer refused to receive Ka Dikko’s CoC
because he seeks to achieve his goals through
violence. Is the refusal valid?
A: No. It is the ministerial duty on the part of the
election officer to receive and acknowledge receipt of
the CoC. The question of whether or not a person is
disqualified belongs to another tribunal in an
appropriate disqualification case.
Nuisance candidates
Candidates who have no bona fide intention to run for
the office for which the CoC has been filed and would
thus prevent a faithful election. And upon showing
1. Said certificate has been filed to put the election
process in mockery or disrepute
2. To cause confusion among the voters by the
similarity of the names of the registered
candidates; or
3. By other circumstances or acts which
demonstrate that a candidate has no bona fide
intention to run for the office for which his CoC
has been filed and thus prevent a faithful
determination of the true will of the electorate.
(Tajanan v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 104443, April 13,
Effect of reacquisition of Philippine citizenship as to
the domicile/residence requirement for running as a
mayoralty candidate
Under RA 9225, it has no automatic impact or effect
on a candidate’s residence/domicile. He merely has an
option to again establish his domicile in the
municipality, which place shall become his new
domicile of choice. The length of his residence therein
shall be determined from the time he made it his
domicile of choice and it shall not retroact to the time
of his birth. (Japson v. COMELEC, G.R .No. 180088,
January 19, 2009)
Effect of filing two certificates of candidacy
The COMELEC may, motu proprio or upon verified
petition of an interested party, refuse to give due
course to or cancel a CoC upon showing of the abovestated circumstances. (Sec. 69, BP 881 OEC)
It disqualifies the person to run for both elective
positions. (Sec. 73, BP 881, OEC)
Q: Jean and Joyette were the only candidates for
mayor of Bigaa, Bulacan in the May 1995 local
elections. Jean obtained 10,000 votes as against
3,000 votes for Joyette. In the same elections, Gem
got the highest number of votes among the
Duty of the COMELEC in receiving CoCs
GR: When a candidate files his CoC, the COMELEC has
a ministerial duty to receive and acknowledge its
Political and International Law
candidates for the Sangguniang Bayan of the same
town. Jean died the day before her proclamation.
1. Who should the Board of Canvassers proclaim as
elected mayor, Jean, Joyette or Gem? Explain.
2. Who is entitled to discharge the functions of the
office of the mayor, Joyette or Gem? Explain.
logical to conclude that the votes cast for Enrique
could have been intended only for the legitimate
candidate, Renato. The possibility of confusion in
names of candidates if the names of nuisance
candidates remained on the ballots on election day,
cannot be discounted or eliminated, even under the
automated voting system especially considering that
voters who mistakenly shaded the oval beside the
name of the nuisance candidate instead of the bona
fide candidate they intended to vote for could no
longer ask for replacement ballots to correct the same.
(Dela Cruz v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 192221, November
1. It is Jean who should be proclaimed as winner,
because she was the one who obtained the
highest number of votes for the position of mayor,
but a notation should be made that she died for
the purpose of applying the rule on succession to
office. Joyette cannot be proclaimed, because the
death of the candidate who obtained the highest
number of votes does not entitle the candidate
who obtained the next highest number of votes to
be proclaimed the winner, since he was not the
choice of the electorate. Gem is not entitled to be
proclaimed elected as mayor, because she ran for
the Sangguniang Bayan.
Period to file a petition to deny due course to or
cancel a CoC
A verified petition seeking to deny due course or to
cancel a CoC may be filed by the person exclusively on
the ground that any material representation contained
therein as required under Sec. 74 of the OEC is false.
The petition may be filed at any time not later than
twenty-five (25) days from the time of the filing of the
CoC and shall be decided, after due notice and hearing,
not later than fifteen days before the election.
Neither Joyette nor Gem is entitled to discharge
the functions of the office of mayor. Joyette is not
entitled to discharge the office of mayor, since she
was defeated in the election. Gem is not entitled
to discharge the office of mayor. Under Sec. 44 of
the Local Government Code, it is the vice mayor
who should succeed in case of permanent vacancy
in the office of the mayor. It is only when the
position of the vice mayor is also vacant that the
member of the Sangguniang Bayan who obtained
the highest number of votes will succeed to the
office of mayor. (Benito v. COMELEC, G.R. No.
106053, August 17, 1994)
Requisites for the grant of a petition to deny due
course to or cancel a CoC
Q: Renato and Enrique, both sharing the same
surname Dela Cruz, run for Vice Mayor. Renato had
Enrique declared to be a nuisance candidate and
asked the COMELEC to strike out his name from the
ballot. But the ballot still retained Enrique’s name
despite his declaration as a nuisance candidate.
During Renato’s campaign, he stressed that his
designated number was 2 and that Enrique was
declared by the COMELEC to be a nuisance candidate.
Bruno, the other candidate, won as Vice Mayor by a
difference of 39 votes against Renato. COMELEC
regarded the votes cast for Enrique as stray votes.
Renato contends that he should have won had the
votes cast for Enrique been counted in his favor.
Should the stray votes for Enrique be counted in favor
of Renato?
NOTE: These two requirements must concur to warrant the
cancellation of the CoC.
Material misrepresentation
Material misrepresentation in a CoC refers to the
qualification for elective office, which includes false
statement as to age, residency, citizenship, being a
registered voter and any other legal qualifications
necessary to run for an elective office.
NOTE: A misrepresentation which does not affect one’s
qualification to run or hold public office will not suffice for
the cancellation of a CoC.
A: Yes. As we pronounced in Bautista, the voters’
constructive knowledge of such cancelled candidacy
made their will more determinable, as it is then more
Material misrepresentation in the qualifications
for elective office, which includes age, residency,
citizenship, and any other legal qualifications
necessary to run for an elective office;
Deliberate attempt to mislead, misinform or hide
a fact which would otherwise render a candidate
rule on substitution of candidates. No Statement of
Withdrawal shall be accepted if filed by a person other than
the candidate himself or if filed by mail, electronic mail,
telegram or facsimile.” (Sec. 15, COMELEC Res. 9518, 11
September 2012)
Effects of disqualification
Any candidate who has been declared by final
judgment to be disqualified shall not be voted for. The
votes cast in his favor shall not be counted.
Period to withdraw Certificate of Candidacy
At any time before Election Day. (Sec. 15, COMELEC
Res. 9518, 11 September 2012)
If the candidate is not disqualified by final judgment
before the election and receives the highest number
of votes in the election, the court or COMELEC will
continue with the trial and hearing of the action,
inquiry or protest. Upon motion of the complainant or
intervenor, the court or COMELEC may order the
suspension of the proclamation of the candidate
whenever the evidence of guilt is strong.
Effect of withdrawal on the liabilities of the candidate
The filing of a withdrawal of a CoC shall not affect
whatever civil, criminal or administrative liabilities a
candidate may have incurred. (Sec. 15, COMELEC Res.
9518, 11 September 2012)
Remedy of a petitioner if the petition for
disqualification is unresolved on the day of the
Q: May a person who has withdrawn his CoC be
eligible to run for another position or become a
substitute candidate?
The petitioner may file a motion with the Division or
Commission En Banc where the case is pending, to
suspend the proclamation of the candidate concerned,
provided that the evidence for the grounds to
disqualify is strong. For this purpose, at least three (3)
days prior to any election, the Clerk of the Commission
shall prepare a list of pending cases and furnish all
Commissioners copies of the said list.
A: A person who has withdrawn his CoC for a position
shall not be eligible, whether as a substitute candidate
or not, for any other position. (Sec. 15, COMELEC
Resolution 9518, 11 September 2012)
Q: On the last day of filing a CoC, March 31, Kristine
Rossellini withdrew her CoC. On April 1, campaign
period started. On April 2, she wanted to run again so
she filed a written declaration withdrawing her
withdrawal. Is her act of withdrawing the withdrawal
In the event that a candidate with an existing and
pending Petition to disqualify is proclaimed winner,
the Commission shall continue to resolve the said
petition. (Sec. 5, Rule 25, COMELEC Res. 9523, 25
September 2012)
A: No. The withdrawal of the withdrawal of the CoC
made after the last day of filing is considered as filing
of a new CoC. Hence, it was not allowed since it was
filed out of time. (Monsale v. Nico, G.R. No. L-2539,
May 28, 1949)
Rule on withdrawal of candidates
To be effective, the withdrawal should be under oath
or in the form of a sworn declaration that he is
withdrawing his CoC, such being the requirement of
the law. A withdrawal of candidacy which is not a valid
withdrawal generally produces no legal effect, and for
all legal intents and purposes there is no withdrawal
and he remains a candidate. The exception to this rule
is when the withdrawal which is not under oath, is
actually made and accepted by the election registrar,
as a result of which a substitute candidate files his CoC
in his place and receives the winning number of votes.
Election campaign
An act designed to promote the election or defeat of a
particular candidate or candidates to a public office
which shall include:
1. Forming organizations, associations, clubs,
committees or other groups of persons for the
purpose of soliciting votes and/or undertaking any
campaign for or against a candidate
2. Holding political caucuses, conferences, meetings,
rallies, parades, or other similar assemblies, for
the purpose of soliciting votes and/or undertaking
NOTE: Any person who has filed a CoC may withdraw the
same (Sec. 15, COMELEC Res. 9518, 11 September 2012)
It must be noted that withdrawal of a CoC cannot be made
by someone else. “It must be filed personally subject to the
Political and International Law
gaining undue advantage in exposure and publicity on
account of their resources and popularity. (Chavez v.
COMELEC, G.R. No. 162777, August 31, 2004)
any campaign or propaganda for or against a
commentaries, or holding interviews for or
against the election of any candidate for public
Publishing or distributing campaign literature or
materials designed to support or oppose the
election of any candidate; or
Directly or indirectly soliciting votes, pledges or
support for or against a candidate. (Sec. 79, BP
881 OEC)
Q: Petitioner Diana De Castro and respondent Marj
Perez ran for mayor of Sta. Monica, Surigao Del Norte
during the May 14, 2007 elections. Diana’s political
party held a motorcade preceding the filing of her
CoC announcing her candidacy for mayor. Because of
this, Marj filed a petition to disqualify Diana for
engaging in premature campaigning in violation of
Sec.80 and 68 of the OEC. Did Diana violate the
prohibition against premature campaigning?
NOTE: The foregoing enumerated acts if performed for the
purpose of enhancing the chances of aspirants for
nomination for candidacy to a public office by a political
party, aggroupment, or coalition of parties shall not be
considered as election campaign or partisan election activity.
A: The campaign period for local officials began on 30
March 2007 and ended on 12 May 2007. Diana filed
her CoC on 29 March 2007. Diana was thus a candidate
on 29 March 2009 only for purposes of printing the
ballots under Sec. 11 of RA 8436. On 29 March 2007,
the law still did not consider Diana a candidate for
purposes other than the printing of ballots. Acts
committed by Diana prior to 30 March 2007, the date
when she became a "candidate," even if constituting
election campaigning or partisan political activities,
are not punishable under Sec. 80 of the OEC. Such acts
are within the realm of a citizen’s protected freedom
of expression. Acts committed by Diana within the
campaign period are not covered by Sec. 80 as Sec. 80
punishes only acts outside the campaign period.
Public expressions or opinions or discussions of probable
issues in a forthcoming election or on attributes of or
criticisms against probable candidates proposed to be
nominated in a forthcoming political party convention shall
not be construed as part of any election campaign or
partisan political activity contemplated under the OEC. (Sec.
79, BP 881 OEC)
Period to campaign
Presidential and Vice presidential election – 90
Election of members of the Congress and local
election – 45 days;
Barangay Election – 15 days
Special election under Art. VIII, Sec. 5(2) of the
Constitution – 45 days
In layman’s language, this means that a candidate is
liable for an election offense only for acts done during
the campaign period, not before. The law is clear as
daylight — any election offense that may be
committed by a candidate under any election law
cannot be committed before the start of the campaign
period. (Penera v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 181613,
November 25, 2009)
NOTE: The campaign periods shall not include the day before
and the day of the election. (Sec. 3, BP 881 OEC)
Premature campaign
It shall be unlawful for any person, whether or not a
voter or candidate, or for any party, or association of
persons, to engage in an election campaign or partisan
political activity except during the campaign period.
Any person aspiring for or seeking an elective public
office, who has filed a CoC by himself or through an
accredited political party, aggroupment or coalition of
parties. However, it is no longer enough to merely file
a CoC for a person to be considered a candidate
because "any person who files his CoC within the filing
period shall only be considered a candidate at the start
of the campaign period for which he filed his CoC." Any
person may thus file a CoC on any day within the
prescribed period for filing a CoC yet that person shall
be considered a candidate, for purposes of
determining one’s possible violations of election laws,
only during the campaign period. (Ibid.)
Provided, that political parties may hold political
conventions or meetings to nominate their official
candidates within thirty days before the
commencement of the campaign period and forty-five
days for Presidential and Vice-Presidential election.
(Sec. 80, BP 881 OEC)
NOTE: The use of lawful election propaganda under the Fair
Elections Act is subject to the supervision and regulation by
the COMELEC in order to prevent premature campaigning
and to equalize, as much as practicable, the situation of all
candidates by preventing popular and rich candidates from
Electoral contributions and expenditures
Advance or deposit of money or anything of
A contract, promise or agreement
contribution, whether or not legally enforceable
Use of facilities voluntarily donated by other
persons, the money value of which can be
assessed based on the rates prevailing in the area
Those made for the purpose of influencing the
results of the elections
NOTE: Does not include services rendered without
compensation by individuals volunteering a portion or all of
their time in behalf of a candidate or political party. (Sec. 94,
BP 881 OEC)
Prohibited contributions
It shall also be unlawful for any person or
organization, whether civic or religious, directly or
indirectly, to solicit and/or accept from any
candidate for public office or his representative
any gift, food, transportation, contribution or
donation in cash or in kind from the
commencement of the election period up to and
including election day, except normal and
customary religious stipends, tithes, or
collections. (Sec. 97, BP 881 OEC)
Those made for purposes of partisan political activity,
directly or indirectly by any of the following:
1. Public or private financial institutions (except
loans made by such institutions in the business of
lending money to a candidate or political party,
made in accordance with laws and in the ordinary
course of business)
2. Persons operating public utilities or those
exploiting natural resources of the nation
3. Persons with contracts to supply the government
with goods or services or to perform construction
or other works
4. Grantees of franchises, incentives, exemptions,
allocations, or similar privileges or concessions by
the government
5. Persons who, within one year prior to the date of
the election, have been granted by the
government loans or other accommodations in
excess of P100,000
6. Educational institutions which have received
grants of public funds not less than P100,000
7. Officials or employees in the Civil Service or
members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines;
8. Foreigners and foreign corporations. (Sec. 95, BP
881 OEC)
Lawful election propaganda
Prohibited means of raising funds
Boxing bouts
Beauty contests
Cinematographic, theatrical, or other
performances for the purpose of raising funds
for an election campaign or for the support of
any candidate from the commencement of
the election period up to and including
election day.
Holding any of the following activities:
a. Dances
b. Lotteries
Written printed materials (does not exceed 8 ½ in.
width by 14 in. length)
Handwritten/printed letters
Posters (not exceeding 2 x 3 ft. or 3 x 8 ft. on the
occasion of a public meeting or rally, or in
announcing the holding of such). Provided, that
said streamers may be displayed five (5) days
before the date of rally but shall be removed
within 24 hours after said rally;
Print ads – ¼ page in broadsheets and ½ page in
tabloids thrice a week per newspaper, magazine
or other publication during the campaign period;
Broadcast media (i.e. TV and radio)
All other forms of election propaganda not
prohibited by the OEC or this Act. (Sec. 3,RA 9006,
The Fair Elections Act)
Streamers not exceeding three feet (3’) by eight
feet (8’) in size displayed at the site and on the
occasion of a public meeting or rally. Said
streamers may be displayed five (5) days before
the date of the meeting or rally and shall be
removed within twenty-four (24) hours after said
meeting or rally
Mobile units, vehicles motorcades of all types,
whether engine or manpower driven or animal
drawn, with or without sound systems or loud
speakers and with or without lights;
Political and International Law
Paid advertisements in print or broadcast media
subject to the requirements set forth in Sec.
9 hereof and RA 9006; (Sec. 6, COMELEC Res.
9615, 15 January 2013)
Prohibited forms of election propaganda
To print, publish, post or distribute any
newspaper, newsletter, newsweekly, gazette or
magazine advertising, pamphlet, leaflet, card,
decal, bumper sticker, poster, comic book,
circular, handbill, streamer, sample list of
candidates or any published or printed political
matter and to air or broadcast any election
propaganda or political advertisement by
television or radio or on the internet for or against
a candidate or group of candidates to any public
office, unless they bear and be identified by the
reasonably legible, or audible words “political
advertisement paid for,” followed by the true and
correct name and address of the candidate or
party for whose benefit the election propaganda
was printed or aired. It shall likewise be unlawful
to publish, print or distribute said campaign
materials unless they bear, and are identified by,
the reasonably legible, or audible words “political
advertisements paid by,” followed by the true and
correct name and address of the payor.
b) To print, publish, broadcast or exhibit any such
election propaganda donated or given free of
charge by any person or publishing firm or
broadcast entity to a candidate or party without
the written acceptance by the said candidate or
party and unless they bear and be identified by
the words "printed free of charge,” or “airtime for
this broadcast was provided free of charge by”,
respectively, followed by the true and correct
name and address of the said publishing firm or
broadcast entity;
c) To show, display or exhibit publicly in a theater,
television station, or any public forum any movie,
cinematography or documentary portraying the
life or biography of a candidate, or in which a
character is portrayed by an actor or media
personality who is himself a candidate;
d) For any newspaper or publication, radio,
television or cable television station, or other
mass media, or any person making use of the mass
media to sell or to give free of charge print space
or air time for campaign or election propaganda
purposes to any candidate or party in excess of
the size, duration or frequency authorized by law
or these rules;
e) For any radio, television, cable television station,
announcer or broadcaster to allow the scheduling
of any program, or permit any sponsor to
manifestly favor or oppose any candidate or party
by unduly or repeatedly referring to, or
unnecessarily mentioning his name, or including
therein said candidate or party; and
To post, display or exhibit any election campaign
or propaganda material outside of authorized
common poster areas, in public places, or in
private properties without the consent of the
owner thereof.
Public places referred to in the previous
subsection (f) include any of the following:
a. Electronic announcement boards, such as
LED display boards located along highways
and streets, LCD TV displays posted on walls
of public buildings, and other similar devices
which are owned by local government units,
instrumentality of the Government;
b. Motor vehicles used as patrol cars,
ambulances, and other similar purposes that
are owned by local government units,
corporations, and other agencies and
instrumentalities of the Government,
particularly those bearing red license plates;
c. Waiting sheds, sidewalks, street and lamp
posts, electric posts and wires, traffic
signages and other signboards erected on
public property, pedestrian overpasses and
underpasses, flyovers and underpasses,
bridges, main thoroughfares, center islands
of roads and highways
d. Schools, shrines, barangay halls, health
centers, public structures and buildings or
any edifice thereof;
e. Public utility vehicles such as buses, jeepneys,
trains, taxi cabs, ferries, pedicabs and
tricycles, whether motorized or not;
f. Within the premises of public transport
terminals, such as bus terminals, airports,
seaports, docks, piers, train stations, and the
The violation of letters d and e under subsection (g)
shall be a cause for the revocation of the public utility
franchise and will make the owner and/or operator of
the transportation service and/or terminal liable for an
election offense under Sec. 9 of RA 9006 as
implemented by Sec. 18 (n) of these Rules.
The printing press, printer, or publisher who prints,
reproduces or publishes said campaign materials, and
the broadcaster, station manager, owner of the radio
or television station, or owner or administrator of any
website who airs or shows the political
advertisements, without the required data or in
violation of these rules shall be criminally liable with
the candidate and, if applicable, further suffer the
penalties of suspension or revocation of franchise or
permit in accordance with law. (Sec. 6, COMELEC Res.
9615, 15 January 2013)
No. Although the expenditure limitation applies only
to the purchase of air time, thus leaving political
parties free to spend for other forms of campaign, the
limitation nonetheless results in a direct and
substantial reduction of the quantity of political
speech by restricting the number of issues that can be
discussed, the depth of their discussion and the size of
the audience that can be reached, through the
broadcast media.
CANDIDATES (Fair Elections Act)
120 minutes for TV
60 minutes for TV
180 minutes for radio
90 minutes for radio
Since the purpose of the Free Speech Clause is to
promote the widest possible dissemination of
information, and the reality is that to do this requires
the expenditure of money, a limitation on expenditure
for this purpose cannot be justified, not even for the
purpose of equalizing the opportunity of political
candidates. (Gonzalez v. COMELEC, G.R. No. L-28783,
April 18, 1969)
NOTE: The COMELEC cannot compel newspapers of general
circulation to donate free print space as COMELEC space
without payment of just compensation. Such compulsion
amounts to taking; hence, it is an exercise of eminent
domain and not of police power. (Philippine Press Institute v.
COMELEC, G.R. No. 119694, May 22, 1995) The payment of
just compensation is now expressly provided under Sec. 7 of
the Fair Elections Act.
Rules on election propaganda
However, all broadcasting stations, whether by radio or
television stations, which are licensed by the government,
do not own the airways and frequencies; they are merely
given the temporary privilege of using them. A franchise is a
privilege subject to amendment, and the provision of BP 881
granting free airtime to the COMELEC is an amendment of
the franchise of radio and television stations.
(Telecommunications and Broadcast Attorneys of the
Philippines v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 132922, April 21, 1998)
Payment of just compensation is not necessary since it is a
valid exercise of police power.
Q: A COMELEC resolution provides that political
parties supporting a common set of candidates shall
be allowed to purchase jointly air time and the
aggregate amount of advertising space purchased for
campaign purposes shall not exceed that allotted to
other political parties or groups that nominated only
one set of candidates. The resolution is challenged as
a violation of the freedom of speech and of the press.
Is the resolution constitutionally defensible? Explain.
A: Yes. The resolution is constitutionally defensible.
Under Sec. 4, Art. IX-C of the 1987 Constitution, during
the election period the COMELEC may supervise or
regulate the media of communication or information
to ensure equal opportunity, time, and space among
candidates with the objective of holding free, orderly,
honest, peaceful, and credible elections. To allow
candidates who are supported by more than one
political party to purchase more air time and
advertising space than candidates supported by one
political party only will deprive the latter of equal time
and space in the media.
All registered parties and bona fide candidates
shall have a right to reply to charges published
against them.
No movie, cinematographic, documentary
portraying the life or biography of a candidate
shall be publicly exhibited in theatre, TV station,
or any public forum during the campaign period.
No movie ,cinematograph, documentary
portrayed by an actor or media personality who is
himself a candidate shall be publicly exhibited in a
theatre, TV station or any public form during the
campaign period.
All mass media entities shall furnish the COMELEC
with the copies of all contracts for advertising,
promoting, or opposing any political party or the
candidacy of any person for public office within 5
days after its signing.
Any media personality who is a candidate or is
campaign volunteer for or employed or retained
in a capacity by any candidate or political party
shall be deemed resigned, if so requires by their
employer, shall take a LOA from his work as such
during campaign period.
Q: COMELEC promulgated a resolution providing that
decals and stickers may be posted only in any of the
authorized posting areas provided for. Atty.
Espaldon, a senatorial candidate, assails the
COMELEC's Resolution insofar as it prohibits the
posting of decals and stickers in "mobile" places like
cars and other moving vehicles. According to him,
such prohibition is violative of Sec. 82 of the OEC and
Sec. 11(a) of RA 6646. Is the resolution valid?
Political and International Law
A: No. The COMELEC's prohibition on posting of decals
and stickers on "mobile" places whether public or
private except in designated areas provided for by the
COMELEC itself is null and void on constitutional
grounds. The prohibition unduly infringes on the
citizen's fundamental right of free speech enshrined in
the Constitution. (Sec. 4, Art. III) Significantly, the
freedom of expression curtailed by the questioned
prohibition is not so much that of the candidate or the
political party. The regulation strikes at the freedom of
an individual to express his preference and, by
displaying it on his car, to convince others to agree
with him.
Q: May the media be compelled to publish the results
of the election survey?
A: No, but should they decide to publish the said
survey for public consumption, they must likewise
publish the following information:
a. The name of the person, candidate, party, or
organization that commissioned or paid for the
b. The name of the person, polling firm or survey
organization who conducted the survey;
c. The period during which the survey was
conducted, the methodology used, including the
number of individual respondents and the areas
from which they were selected, and the specific
questions asked;
d. The margin of error of the survey;
e. For each question for which the margin of error is
greater than that reported under par. (4), the
margin of error for that question; and
f. A mailing address and telephone number,
indicating it as an address or telephone number at
which the sponsor can be contacted to obtain a
written report regarding the survey in accordance
with the next succeeding paragraph.
g. The survey together with raw data gathered to
support its conclusions shall be available for
inspection, copying and verification by the
Commission. Any violation of this SEC. shall
constitute an election offense. (Sec. 26, COMELEC
Res. 9615 as amended by COMELEC Res. 9631, 1
February 2013)
Also, the questioned prohibition premised on the
statute (RA 6646) and as couched in the resolution is
void for overbreadth. The restriction as to where the
decals and stickers should be posted is so broad that it
encompasses even the citizen's private property,
which in this case is a privately-owned vehicle. In
consequence of this prohibition, another cardinal rule
prescribed by the Constitution would be violated. Sec.
1, Art. III of the Bill of Rights provides that no person
shall be deprived of his property without due process
of law. The right to property may be subject to a
greater degree of regulation but when this right is
joined by a "liberty" interest, the burden of
justification on the part of the Government must be
exceptionally convincing and irrefutable. The burden is
not met in this case.
Additionally, the constitutional objective to give a rich
candidate and a poor candidate equal opportunity to
inform the electorate as regards their candidacies,
mandated by Art. II, Sec. 26 and Art. XIII, Sec. 1 in
relation to Art. IX (c) Sec. 4 of the Constitution, is not
impaired by posting decals and stickers on cars and
other private vehicles. It is to be reiterated that the
posting of decals and stickers on cars, calesas,
tricycles, pedicabs and other moving vehicles needs
the consent of the owner of the vehicle. Hence, the
preference of the citizen becomes crucial in this kind
of election propaganda not the financial resources of
the candidate. (Adiong v. Comelec, G.R. No. 103956,
March 31, 1992)
Q: Does the conduct of exit polls transgress the
sanctity and secrecy of the ballot?
A: No. In exit polls, the contents of the official ballot
are not actually exposed. Furthermore, the revelation
of whom an elector has voted for is not compulsory,
but voluntary.
Q: Is the conduct of election survey prohibited?
A: No. The SC held that Sec. 5.4 of the Fair Elections
Act prohibiting publication of survey results 15 days
immediately preceding a national election and 7 days
before a local election violates the constitutional rights
of speech, expression and the press because:
1. It imposes a prior restraint on the freedom of
It is a direct and total suppression of a category of
expression and even though such suppression is
only for a limited period; and
The governmental interest sought to be promoted
can be achieved by means other than the
suppression of freedom of expression. (SWS v.
COMELEC, G.R. No. 147571, May 5, 2001)
Voters may also choose not to reveal their identities.
Indeed, narrowly tailored countermeasures may be
prescribed by the COMELEC, so as to minimize or
suppress incidental problems in the conduct of exit
polls, without transgressing the fundamental rights of
our people. (ABS-CBN Broadcasting Corporation v.
COMELEC, G.R. No. 133486, January 28, 2000)
Requirements in the conduct of exit polls
Pollster shall not conduct their surveys within fifty
(50) meters from the polling place, whether said
survey is taken in a home, dwelling place and
other places;
Pollsters shall wear distinctive clothing and
prominently wear their identification cards issued
by the organization they represent;
Pollsters shall inform the voters that they may
refuse to answer; and
If the supporting evidence is not yet available due to
circumstances beyond the power of the claimant, the
latter shall supplement his claim as soon as the
supporting evidence becomes available, without delay
on the part of the claimant.
Claimant must furnish a copy of the verified claim and
its attachments to the media outlet concerned prior to
the filing of the claim with the COMELEC. (Sec. 14,
COMELEC Res. 9615 as amended by COMELEC Res.
9631, 1 February 2013)
Period of resolution
The results of the exit polls may be announced after
the closing of the polls on Election Day, and must
identify the total number of respondents, and the
places where they were taken. Said announcement
shall state that the same is unofficial and does not
represent a trend. (Sec. 27, COMELEC Res. 9615, 15
January 2013)
The COMELEC, through the RED, shall review the
verified claim within forty-eight (48) hours from
receipt thereof, including supporting evidence, and if
circumstances warrant, give notice to the media outlet
involved for appropriate action, which shall, within
forty-eight (48) hours, submit its comment, answer or
response to the RED, explaining the action it has taken
to address the claim. The media outlet must likewise
furnish a copy of the said comment, answer or
response to the claimant invoking the right to reply.
(Sec. 14, COMELEC Res. 9615 as amended by COMELEC
Res. 9631, 1 February 2013)
Allowance of right to reply
All registered political parties, party-list groups or
coalitions and bona fide candidates shall have the right
to reply to charges published or aired against them.
The reply shall be given publicity by the newspaper,
television, and/or radio station which first printed or
aired the charges with the same prominence or in the
same age or section or in the same time slot as the first
statement. (Sec. 14, COMELEC Resolution 9615 as
amended by COMELEC Res. 9631, 1 February 2013)
Remedy of a candidate who feels that his right to
reply was not addressed
File the appropriate petition and/or complaint before
the Commission on Elections or its field offices, which
shall be endorsed to the Clerk of the Commission. (Sec.
14, COMELEC Res. 9615 as amended by COMELEC Res.
9631, 1 February 2013)
Persons who may invoke the right
Registered political parties, party-list groups or
coalitions and bona fide candidates may invoke the
right to reply. (Sec. 14, COMELEC Resolution 9615 as
amended by COMELEC Res. 9631, 1 February 2013)
Limitations on expenses for the candidates and
political parties
Time within which the candidate may invoke the right
to reply
By submitting a formal verified claim within a nonextendible period of forty eight (48) hours from first
broadcast or publication against the media outlet to
the COMELEC, through the appropriate Regional
Election Director (RED) (Sec. 14, COMELEC Resolution
9615 as amended by COMELEC Resolution 9631, 1
February 2013)
NOTE: The formal verified claim shall include:
a) A detailed enumeration of the circumstances and
occurrences which warrant the invocation of the right
of reply
b) Must be accompanied by supporting evidence, such as
a copy of the publication or recording of the television
or radio broadcast, as the case may be.
For candidates - Three pesos (P3.00) for every
voter currently registered in the constituency
where the candidate filed his CoC;
For other candidates without any political party
and without support from any political party – Five
pesos (P5.00) for every voter currently registered
in the constituency where the candidate filed his
For Political Parties and party-list groups – Five
pesos (P5.00) for every voter currently registered
in the constituency or constituencies where it has
official candidates. (Sec. 5, COMELEC Res. 9615, 15
January 2013)
Political and International Law
Lawful expenditures
does not apply to candidates for elective barangay
office. (Sec. 14, RA 7166)
Traveling expenses
stenographers, messengers and other persons
actually employed in the campaign
3. Telegraph and telephone tolls, postage, freight
and express delivery charges
4. Stationery, printing and distribution of printed
matters relative to candidacy
5. Employment of watchers at the polls
6. Rent, maintenance and furnishing of campaign
headquarters, office or place of meetings
7. Political meetings or rallies
8. Advertisements
9. Employment of counsel, the cost of which shall
not be taken into account in determining the
amount of expenses which a candidate or political
party may have incurred
10. Copying and classifying list of voters, investigating
and challenging the right to vote of persons
registered in the lists, the cost of which shall not
be taken into account in determining the amount
of expenses which a candidate or political party
may have incurred
11. Printing sample ballots, the cost of which shall not
be taken into account in determining the amount
of expenses which a candidate or political party
may have incurred. (Sec. 102, BP 88, OEC)
Composition of the Board of Canvassers (BoC)
NOTE: The cost of numbers 9, 10, 11 shall not be taken into
account in determining the amount of expenses which a
candidate or political party may have incurred.
Statement of contribution and expenses
Every candidate and treasurer of the political party
shall, within 30 days after the day of the election, file
in duplicate with the offices of the COMELEC, the full,
true and itemized statement of all contributions and
expenditures in connection with the election. (Sec. 14,
RA 7166)
Effects of failure to file the said statement
No person elected to any public office shall enter
upon the duties of his office until he has filed the
statement of contributions and expenditures
herein required. The same prohibition shall apply
if the political party which nominated the winning
candidates, or winning party-list group, fails to file
the statement required herein.
Such failure will constitute an administrative
offense for which the offenders shall be liable to
pay an administrative fine. Provided, that this
Provincial board of canvassers – The provincial
board of canvassers shall be composed of the
provincial election supervisor or a senior lawyer in
the regional office of the Commission, as
chairman, the provincial fiscal, as vice-chairman,
and the provincial superintendent of schools, and
one representative from each of the ruling party
and the dominant opposition political party in the
constituency concerned entitled to be
represented, as members.
City board of canvassers – The city board of
canvassers shall be composed of the city election
registrar or a lawyer of the Commission, as
chairman, the city fiscal and the city
representative from each of the ruling party and
the dominant opposition political party entitled to
be represented, as members.
District board of canvassers of Metropolitan
Manila – The district board of canvassers shall be
composed of a lawyer of the Commission, as
chairman, and a ranking fiscal in the district and
the most senior district school supervisor in the
district to be appointed upon consultation with
the Ministry of Justice and the Ministry of
Education, Culture and Sports, respectively, and
one representative from each of the ruling party
and the dominant opposition political party in the
constituency concerned, as members.
Municipal board of canvassers – The municipal
board of canvassers shall be composed of the
election registrar or a representative of the
Commission, as chairman, the municipal
treasurer, and the district supervisor or in his
absence any public school principal in the
municipality and one representative from each of
the ruling party and the dominant opposition
political party entitled to be represented, as
Board of canvassers for newly created political
subdivisions – The Commission shall constitute a
board of canvassers and appoint the members
thereof for the first election in a newly created
province, city or municipality in case the officials
who shall act as members thereof have not yet
assumed their duties and functions. (Sec. 221, BP
881 OEC)
Supervision and control over the BOC
The election registrar concerned shall place all the
returns intended for the board of canvassers inside a
ballot box provided with three padlocks whose keys
shall be kept as follows: one by the election registrar,
another by the representative of the ruling party and
the third by the representative of the dominant
political opposition party. (Sec. 229, BP881, OEC)
The Commission shall have direct control and
supervision over the board of canvassers. Any member
of the board of canvassers may, at any time, be
relieved for cause and substituted motu proprio by the
Commission. (Sec. 227., BP 881, OEC)
BOC for President and Vice-President
Process of safekeeping of transmitted election
The board of canvassers shall keep the ballot boxes
containing the election returns in a safe and secure
room before and after the canvass. The door to the
room must be padlocked by three locks with the keys
thereof kept as follows:
1. One with the chairman,
2. The other with the representative of the ruling
3. And the other with the representative of the
dominant opposition political party.
Duties of Congress as BOC for President and Vice
Congress shall determine the authenticity and due
execution of certificate of canvass.
Each certificate of canvass was executed, signed,
thumb marked by the Chair and transmitted to
Each certificate contains the names of all
candidates and votes and words and figures.
No discrepancy in authentic copies
The watchers of candidates, political parties, coalition
of political parties and organization collectively
authorized by the Commission to appoint watchers
shall have the right to guard the room. Violation of this
right shall constitute an election offense. (Sec. 230, BP
881 OEC)
BOC for Senators
COMELEC en banc.
Manner of delivery and transmittal of election
Process of canvassing by the board
The copy of the election
returns, duly placed
inside a sealed envelope
signed and affixed with
the imprint of the thumb
of the right hand of all
the members of the
inspectors, shall be
personally delivered by
the members of the
inspectors to the city or
canvassers under proper
receipt to be signed by all
the members thereof.
The copy of the
election returns shall
be personally delivered
by the members of the
board of election
election registrar for
transmittal to the
proper receipt to be
signed by all the
members thereof.
The BOC shall meet not later than six o'clock in the
afternoon of Election Day at the place designated
by the Commission to receive the election returns
and to immediately canvass those that may have
already been received.
It shall meet continuously from day to day until
the canvass is completed, and may adjourn but
only for the purpose of awaiting the other election
returns from other polling places within its
Each time the board adjourns, it shall make a total
of all the votes canvassed so far for each
candidate for each office, furnishing the
Commission in Manila by the fastest means of
communication a certified copy thereof, and
making available the data contained therein to
the mass media and other interested parties.
As soon as the other election returns are
delivered, the board shall immediately resume
canvassing until all the returns have been
The respective board of canvassers shall prepare
a certificate of canvass duly signed and affixed
with the imprint of the thumb of the right hand of
each member, supported by a statement of the
Political and International Law
votes received by each candidate in each polling
place and, on the basis thereof, shall proclaim as
elected the candidates who obtained the highest
number of votes cast in the province, city,
municipality or barangay. (Sec. 231, BP 881 OEC)
NOTE: The BoC, notwithstanding the fact that not all the
election returns have been received by it, may terminate the
canvass and proclaim the candidates elected on the basis of
the available election returns if the missing election returns
will not affect the results of the election (Sec. 233, BP 881,
NOTE: Failure to comply with this requirement shall
constitute an election offense.
Persons not allowed inside the canvassing room
Duty of the BoC when the integrity of ballots is
Any officer or member of the Armed Forces of the
Philippines, including the Philippine Constabulary,
or the Integrated National Police
Any peace officer or any armed or unarmed
persons belonging to an extra-police agency,
special forces, reaction forces, strike forces, home
defense forces, barangay self-defense units,
barangay tanods
Any member of the security or police
instrumentalities, or government-owned or
controlled corporations or their subsidiaries
Any member of a privately owned or operated
security, investigative, protective or intelligence
agency performing identical or similar functions to
enter the room where the canvassing of the
election returns are held by the board of
canvassers and within a radius of fifty meters from
such room. (Sec. 232, BP 881, OEC)
NOTE: The right of a candidate to avail of this provision
shall not be lost or affected by the fact that an election
protest is subsequently filed by any of the candidates.
In case the election returns appear to be tampered
with or falsified - If the election returns submitted
to the board of canvassers appear to be tampered
with, altered or falsified after they have left the
hands of the board of election inspectors, or
otherwise not authentic, or were prepared by the
board of election inspectors under duress, force,
intimidation, or prepared by persons other than
the member of the board of election inspectors,
the board of canvassers shall use the other copies
of said election returns and, if necessary, the copy
inside the ballot box which upon previous
authority given by the Commission may be
retrieved in accordance with Sec. 220 hereof. (Sec.
235, BP 881 OEC)
In case of discrepancies in the election return - if it
appears to the board of canvassers that there
exists discrepancies in the other authentic copies
of the election returns from a polling place or
discrepancies in the votes of any candidate in
words and figures in the same return, and in either
case the difference affects the results of the
election, the Commission, upon motion of the
board of canvassers or any candidate affected and
after due notice to all candidates concerned, shall
proceed summarily to determine whether the
integrity of the ballot box had been preserved,
NOTE: The board of canvassers by a majority vote, if it deems
necessary, may make a call in writing for the detail of
policemen or any peace officers for their protection or for
the protection of the election documents and paraphernalia
in the possession of the board, or for the maintenance of
peace and order, in which case said policemen or peace
officers, who shall be in proper uniform, shall stay outside
the room within a radius of thirty meters near enough to be
easily called by the board of canvassers at any time. (Ibid.)
Duty of the BoC in case the election returns are
delayed, lost or destroyed
In case its copy of the election returns is missing, the
board of canvassers shall:
1. Obtain such missing election returns from the
board of election inspectors concerned
2. If said returns have been lost or destroyed, the
board of canvassers, upon prior authority of the
Commission, may use any of the authentic copies
of said election returns or a certified copy of said
election returns issued by the Commission, and
3. Direct its representative to investigate the case
and immediately report the matter to the
In case of material defects in the election returns If it should clearly appear that some requisites in
form or data had been omitted in the election
returns, the board of canvassers shall call for all
the members of the board of election inspectors
concerned by the most expeditious means, for the
same board to effect the correction. In case of the
omission in the election returns of the name of
any candidate and/or his corresponding votes, the
board of canvassers shall require the board of
election inspectors concerned to complete the
necessary data in the election returns and affix
therein their initials. (Sec. 234, BP 881, OEC)
and once satisfied thereof shall order the opening
of the ballot box to recount the votes cast in the
polling place solely for the purpose of determining
the true result of the count of votes of the
candidates concerned. (Sec. 236, BP 881, OEC)
NOTE: When integrity of ballots is violated. - The
Commission shall not recount the ballots but shall forthwith
seal the ballot box and order its safekeeping. (Sec. 237, BP
881, OEC)
Idem Sonans
Under Rule 7 of the rules for the appreciation of ballots
in Sec. 211 of the OEC, the idem sonans rule means
that a name or surname incorrectly written which,
when read, has a sound similar to the name or
surname of a candidate when correctly written shall
be counted in his favor.
Canvass of remaining or unquestioned returns to continue.
If, after the canvass of all the said returns, it should be
determined that the returns which have been set aside will
affect the result of the election, no proclamation shall be
made except upon orders of the Commission after due
notice and hearing. Any proclamation made in violation
hereof shall be null and void. (Sec. 238, BP 881, OEC)
Tie in election result
Whenever it shall appear from the canvass that two or
more candidates have received an equal and highest
number of votes, or in cases where two or more
candidates are to be elected for the same position and
two or more candidates received the same number of
votes for the last place in the number to be elected,
the board of canvassers, after recording this fact in its
minutes, shall by resolution upon five days notice to all
the tied candidates, hold a special public meeting at
which the board of canvassers shall proceed to the
drawing of lots of the candidates who have tied and
shall proclaim as elected the candidates who may be
favored by luck, and the candidates so proclaimed
shall have the right to assume office in the same
manner as if he had been elected by plurality of vote.
The board of canvassers shall forthwith make a
certificate stating the name of the candidate who had
been favored by luck and his proclamation on the basis
thereof. (Sec. 240, BP 881 OEC)
Requisites for the grant of a petition to deny due
course to or cancel a CoC
Material misrepresentation in the qualifications
for elective office, which includes age, residency,
citizenship, and any other legal qualifications
necessary to run for an elective office; and
Deliberate attempt to mislead, misinform or hide
a fact which would otherwise render a candidate
NOTE: These two requirements must concur to warrant
the cancellation of the CoC.
A verified petition may be filed exclusively on the
ground that any material representation contained in
the certificate as required under Sec. 74 is false. The
petition may be filed not later than 25 days from the
time of filing of the CoC, and shall be decided, after due
notice and hearing, not later than 15 days before the
election. (Sec. 78, BP 881, OEC)
Instances when proceedings of the BoC are
considered illegal proceedings
There is an illegal proceeding of the BoC when the
canvassing is a sham or mere ceremony, the results of
which are pre-determined and manipulated as when
any of the following circumstances are present:
1. Precipitate canvassing
2. Terrorism
3. Lack of sufficient notice to the members of the
4. Improper venue. (Sec. 2, Rule 4, COMELEC Res.
8804, March 22, 2010)
Jurisdiction over a petition to cancel a COC lies with the
COMELEC in division, not with the COMELEC en banc.
(Garvida v. Sales, G.R. o. 122872, September 10, 1997)
Q: Joy and Bel both ran as mayoralty candidates in
the Municipality of Marantao, Lanao del Sur. Bel filed
a Petition for Disqualification and to Deny Due Course
under Sec. 78 of the OEC against Joy. Bel alleged that
Joy was a double registrant, being a registered voter
in Marawi City and Marantao. There being double
registration, Joy’s subsequent registration in
Marantao was null and void. Therefore, Joy was
disqualified to run for the position of municipal
Characteristics of canvassing
The BoC exercises ministerial duty.
The BoC exercises quasi – judicial functions
Proceedings before BOC are summary
Canvassing shall be in public
Proceedings are continuous from day to day,
without interruption except to adjourn.
After Proclamation, BOC becomes functus officio
The BoC is a collegial body.
Political and International Law
mayor of said municipality. Is Joy’s voter registration
a material fact, the falsity of which would be a ground
for a petition to deny due course to her CoC?
proclamation. (2013 COMELEC Rules of Procedure,
Rule 25, Sec. 3)
Manner of the proceedings
A: In Maruhom v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 179430, July 27,
2009, the Court declared that a material fact refers to
a candidate’s eligibility for qualification for elective
office like citizenship, residence or status as a
registered voter. A person’s voter registration
constitutes a material fact because it affects her
eligibility to be elected as municipal mayor of
Marantao. Sec. 39(a) of the LGC requires that an
elective official must be, among other things, a
registered voter in the barangay, municipality, city or
province where she intends to be elected.
The petition is heard summarily. However, the
COMELEC cannot disqualify a candidate without
hearing and affording him opportunity to adduce
evidence to support his side and taking into account
such evidence.
Final and executory judgment
A Decision or Resolution is deemed final and executory
if, in case of a Division ruling, no motion for
reconsideration is filed within the reglementary
period, or in cases of rulings of the Commission En
Banc, no restraining order is issued by the Supreme
Court within five (5) days from receipt of the decision
or resolution. (2013 COMELEC Rules of Procedure, Rule
23, Sec. 8)
Petition for disqualification v. Petition to deny due
Premised on Sec. 12 or
OEC, or Sec. 40 of the
A person who is
disqualified under Sec.
68 is merely prohibited
to continue as a
Thus, a candidate who is
disqualified under Sec.
68 can be validly
substituted under Sec.
77 of the OEC because he
remains a candidate until
Based on a statement
representation in the
said certificate that is
The person whose
certificate is cancelled
or denied due course
under Sec. 78 is not
treated as a candidate
at all, as if he never filed
a CoC.
A person whose Coc
has been denied due
course or cancelled
under Sec. 78 cannot be
substituted because he
is never considered as
Grounds for disqualification
Those declared by final decision of a competent court,
guilty of, or found by the Commission to be suffering
from any disqualification provided by law or
the Constitution (2013 COMELEC Rules of Procedure,
Rule 25, Sec. 1)
1. Lacking qualification
2. Filing of COC for more than 1 office
3. False and Material representation in the CoC
4. Disqualification under the LGC
5. Nuisance Candidate
6. Election offenses enumerated under Sec. 68 of
the OEC
7. Declaration of insanity or incompetency by
competent authority
8. Sentenced by final judgment for subversion,
insurrection, rebellion or an offense which he has
been sentenced to a penalty of more than 18
months or a crime involving moral turpitude,
unless given plenary pardon/ amnesty.
Petition for disqualification
Instances where a failure of election may be declared
It is the remedy against any candidate who does not
possess all the qualifications required by the
Constitution or law, or who commits any act declared
by law to be grounds for disqualification.
Time of filing the petition for disqualification
It may be filed any day after the last day for filing of
certificates of candidacy, but not later than the date of
The election in any polling place has not been held
on the date fixed on account of force majeure,
violence, terrorism, fraud, or other analogous
The election in any polling place had been
suspended before the hour fixed by law for the
closing of the voting on account of force majeure,
violence, terrorism, fraud, or other analogous
causes; and
After the voting and during the preparation and
transmission of the election returns or canvass
thereof such election results in failure to elect on
account of force majeure, violence, fraud or
analogous causes. (Banaga Jr. vs Comelec, G.R.
No. 134696, July 31, 2000)
1. The COMELEC shall decide by a majority vote of all
its members on any case or matter brought before
it. (Sec. 7, Art. IX-A of the 1987 Constitution) In
Cua v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 80519-2, December 17,
1987, the Supreme Court stated that a two-to-one
decision rendered by a Division of the COMELEC
and a three-to-two decision rendered by the
COMELEC en banc was valid where only five
members took part in deciding the case.
NOTE: There is a failure to elect when nobody can be
declared as winner because the will of the majority has been
defiled and cannot be ascertained.
Power to declare a failure of election
The COMELEC has the power to declare a failure of
election and this can be exercised motu proprio or
upon verified petition. (Loong v. COMELEC, G.R. Nos.
107814-15, May 16, 1996)
No, his CoC cannot be accepted. As a rule, in cases
of postponement or failure of election no
additional CoC shall be accepted. (Sec. 75, OEC)
NOTE: This rule does not apply in cases of substitution
of candidates in case of death, disqualification or
withdrawal of another under Sec. 77.
NOTE: The hearing is summary in nature and the COMELEC
may delegate to its lawyers the power to hear the case and
to receive evidence. (Ibid.)
Q: Is low turn-out of voters enough basis to grant a
petition to declare a failure of election?
No, the answer will be different. An additional CoC
may be accepted in cases of postponement or
failure of election if there was a substitution of
candidates; but the substitute must belong to and
must be endorsed by the same party. (Sec.75 OEC)
Q: Is a petition to declare failure of election different
from a petition to annul the election results?
A: No. All the law requires is that a winning candidate
must be elected by a plurality of valid votes, regardless
of the actual number of ballots cast. Thus, even if less
than 25% of the electorate in the questioned precincts
cast their votes, the same must still be respected.
(Mitmug v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 106270-73, February
10, 1994)
A: No. A prayer to declare failure of elections and a
prayer to annul the election results are actually of the
same nature. Whether an action is for declaration of
failure of elections or for annulment of election
results, based on allegations of fraud, terrorism,
violence or analogous, the OEC denominates them
similarly. (Banaga, Jr. v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 134696,
July 31, 2000)
Q: Due to violence and terrorism attending the
casting of votes in a municipality in Lanao del Sur, it
became impossible to hold therein free, orderly and
honest elections. Several candidates for municipal
positions withdrew from the race. One candidate for
Mayor petitioned the COMELEC for the
postponement of the elections and the holding of
special elections after the causes of such
postponement or failure of elections shall have
1. How many votes of the COMELEC Commissioners
may be cast to grant the petition? Explain.
2. A person who was not a candidate at the time of
the postponement of the elections decided to
run for an elective position and filed a CoC prior
to the special elections. May his CoC be
accepted? Explain.
3. Suppose he ran as a substitute for a candidate
who previously withdrew his candidacy, will your
answer be the same? Explain.
NOTE: There is failure of elections only when the will of the
electorate has been muted and cannot be ascertained.
(Benito v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 134913, January 19, 2001)
Postponement of elections v. Failure of elections
Any serious cause of:
a. Force Majeure
b. Violence
c. Terrorism
d. Loss or destruction of election paraphernalia
e. Other analogous cases
Serious impossibility to
have free and orderly
Grounds must exist
before voting
Failure to elect and
affect results of
Grounds may occur any
time before
Political and International Law
Verified petition by
any interested
person or motu
proprio by
COMELEC en banc
Due notice
Election is
Conduct elections
reasonably close to
elections not held,
but not later than
30 days from
cessation of cause
1. Correction of manifest errors
2. Questions affecting the composition or
proceedings of the board of canvassers and
3. Determination of the authenticity and due
execution of certificates of canvass as provided in
Sec. 30 of RA 7166, as amended by RA 9369.
1. Verified petition by
any interested
2. Due Notice
3. Hearing
Declaration of
Failure of elections
Holding of
continuation of
reasonably close to
election not held,
but not later than
30 days from
cessation of cause.
GR: The COMELEC is restricted to a mere examination of
returns on their face and not to go beyond and investigate
irregularities. (Belac v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 145802, April 4,
XPN: If there is a prima facie showing that return is not
genuine. (Ibid.)
No pre-proclamation cases are allowed in case of
barangay election. (Sec. 9, RA 6679)
NOTE: The COMELEC en banc by majority vote may grant the
postponement of elections and failure of elections.
Termination of pre-proclamation cases
GR: At the beginning of term of the officers. (Sec. 16,
RA 7166)
Pre-proclamation controversies
1. When based on evidence, COMELEC determines
that petition is meritorious
2. The SC in a petition for certiorari issues a contrary
order; or
3. The case is not a pre-proclamation case.
(Peñaflorida v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 125950,
November 18, 1997)
They refer to any question pertaining to or affecting
the proceedings of the board of canvassers, and the
preparation, transmission, receipt, custody and
appreciation of election returns which may be raised
by any candidate or by any registered political party or
coalition of political parties before the board or
directly with the COMELEC in relation to the
preparation, transmission, receipt, custody and
appreciation of election returns. (Sec. 241, BP 881
Issues which may be raised in a pre-proclamation
NOTE: The purpose of this kind of controversy is to ascertain
winners in the elections on basis of election returns duly
authenticated by board of inspectors and admitted by the
board of canvassers. (Abella v. Larrazabal, G.R. No. 8772130, December 21, 1989)
Nature of pre-proclamation controversy
It shall be heard summarily by the COMELEC. Its
decision shall be executory after 5 days from receipt
by the losing party, unless contrary orders from the SC.
NOTE: An incomplete canvass is illegal and cannot be
the basis of a valid proclamation. A proclamation made
where the contested returns set aside will affect the
result of the election and the board of canvassers
proceeded to proclaim without the authority from the
COMELEC is null and void. (Sema v. COMELEC, G.R. No.
141249-50, December 13, 2000)
Q: Are there pre-proclamation cases in elections for
President, Vice-president and Members of the House
of Representatives on matters relating to the
preparation, transmission, receipt, custody, and
appreciation of the election returns or the certificates
of canvass?
GR: No. (Sec. 15, Synchronized Election Law)
Illegal composition or proceedings of the BoC
Canvassed election returns are incomplete,
contain material defects, appear to be tampered
with or falsified; or contain discrepancies in the
same returns or in other authentic copies thereof
as mentioned in Sec. 233, 234, 235, and 236 of BP
Election returns were prepared under duress
threat, coercion, or intimidation, or they are
obviously manufactured or not authentic.
When substitute or fraudulent returns in
controverted polling places were canvassed, the
results of which materially affected the standing
of the aggrieved candidate/s. (Sec. 243, BP 881,
Irregularities in relation to preparation,
transmission, receipt, custody, and appreciation
of election returns and certificate of canvass.
Quo warranto is not the proper remedy
What was filed was a petition to annul a
proclamation, and not a Quo warranto or Election
Election Contest expressly made without
prejudice to Pre Proclamation Controversy or it
was made ad cautelam
Petition to annul or suspend the proclamation
It is a remedy where there is a manifest error on the
face of the transmitted returns or variance of results
from the election returns and CoC, and a winning
candidate is about to be, or has already been
proclaimed on the basis thereof.
Post-election disputes
They are disputes which arise or are instituted after
proclamation of winning candidates and which issues
pertain to the casting and counting of votes (Election
Protests), or to the eligibility or disloyalty of the
winning candidates (Quo warranto).
The COMELEC is required to hear the petition
immediately and the ballots may be ordered manually
recounted to verify the manifest errors or alleged
Nature of an election contest
NOTE: The filing of a petition to annul or suspend the
proclamation shall suspend the running of the period within
which to file an election protest or quo warranto
It is a special summary proceeding the object of which
is to expedite the settlement of controversies between
candidates as to who received the majority of legal
Pre-proclamation controversies allowed under the
new Automated Elections Law
NOTE: Statutes providing for election contests are to be
liberally construed to the end that the will of the people in
the choice of public officers may not be defeated by mere
technical objections. An election contest, unlike an ordinary
action, is imbued with public interest since it involves not
only the adjudication of the private interests of rival
candidates but also the paramount need of dispelling the
uncertainty which beclouds the real choice of the electorate
with respect to who shall discharge the prerogatives of the
office within their gift. Moreover, it is neither fair nor just to
keep in office for an uncertain period one who’s right to it is
under suspicion. It is imperative that his claim be
immediately cleared not only for the benefit of the winner
but for the sake of public interest, which can only be
achieved by brushing aside technicalities of procedure which
protract and delay the trial of an ordinary action. (Vialogo v.
COMELEC, G.R. No. 194143, October 4, 2011)
GR: For purpose of the elections for president, vice –
president, senator, and member of the House of
Representatives, no pre-proclamation cases shall be
allowed on matters relating to the preparation,
transmission, receipt, custody and appreciation of
election returns or the certificates of canvass, as the
case may be. (Sec. 38, RA 9369)
1. Illegal composition of the BoC;
2. Illegal proceedings of the BoC. (Sec. 1, Rule 3,
COMELEC Res. No. 8804, March 22, 2010)
NOTE: However, this does not preclude the authority of the
appropriate canvassing body motu proprio or upon written
complaint of an interested person to correct manifest errors
in the certificate of canvass or election before it. (Sec. 38, RA
Where election protests can be filed
Q: Is the COMELEC precluded from exercising powers
over pre proclamation controversies, when the
Electoral Tribunal acquires jurisdiction?
GR: Yes.
1. BOC was improperly constituted
2. Proclamation was null and void
COMELEC – sole judge of all contests relating to
elections, returns, and qualifications of all elective
regional, provincial and city officials. (reviewable
by SC under Rule 64 using Rule 65.)
Presidential Electoral Tribunal – President and
Vice President
SET – Senator
HRET – representative
RTC – over contests for municipal officials which
may be appealed to COMELEC
MeTC or MTC – for barangay officials which may
be appealed to COMELEC
Political and International Law
Grounds for the filing of election protests
Presence of flying voters
Misreading or misappreciation of ballots
Disenfranchisement of voters
Unqualified members of board of election
Other election irregularities.
“Good reasons”
A combination of two or more of the following:
1. That public interest is involved or the will of the
2. The shortness of the remaining portion of the
term of the contested office
3. The length of time that the election contest has
been pending (Ramas v. COMELEC, G.R. No.
130831. February 10, 1998)
NOTE: Pendency of election protest is not sufficient basis to
enjoin the protestee from assuming office.
A protestant has the right to withdraw his protest or drop
polling places from his protest. The protestee, in such cases,
has no cause to complain because the withdrawal is the
exclusive prerogative of the protestant.
NOTE: If instead of issuing a preliminary injunction in place
of a TRO, a court opts to decide the case on its merits with
the result that it also enjoins the same acts covered by its
TRO, it stands to reason that the decision amounts to a grant
of preliminary injunction. Such injunction should be deemed
in force pending any appeal from the decision. The view that
execution pending appeal should still continue
notwithstanding a decision of the higher court enjoining
such execution—does not make sense. It will render quite
inutile the proceedings before such court. (Panlilio v.
COMELEC, G.R. No. 184286, February 26, 2010)
Content of an election protest
It must be initiated by filing a protest that must contain
the following allegations:
a. The protestant is a candidate who duly filed a
COC and was voted for in the election.
b. The protestee has been proclaimed
c. The date of the proclamation. (Miro v.
COMELEC, G.R.No. L-57574, April 20, 1983)
Best pieces of evidence in an election contest
Q: On June 23, 2004, the National Board of
Canvassers (NBC) proclaimed Sitro as the duly elected
Vice-President of the Philippines. Karen was the
person who obtained the second highest number of
votes. Karen filed a protest with the PET praying for
the annulment of Sitro's proclamation on the ground
of fraud and manipulation of the results. While the
protest was pending, Karen ran in the Senate, which
term coincides with the term of the 2004-2010 VicePresidency. She was elected and assumed the office
of senator. Will the protest prosper?
Quo warranto proceeding for an elective office
It is a proceeding to determine the right to the use or
exercise of an office and to oust the holder from its
enjoyment, if his claim is not well-founded or if he has
forfeited his right to enjoy the privilege.
Unlike an election protest, which can only be filed by a
candidate, any voter can file a petition for quo
NOTE: Election Protests and Quo warranto proceedings
against a Congressman-elect, Senator-elect, President-elect
and VP-elect are brought before the appropriate electoral
tribunals created by the Constitution.
Requisites for an execution pending appeal in
election protest cases
It must be upon motion by the prevailing party
with notice to the adverse party
There must be good reasons for the said execution
Ballots are the best and most conclusive evidence
in an election contest where the correctness of
the number of votes of each candidate is involved.
(Delos Reyes, G.R. No. 170070, February 28, 2007)
Election returns are the best evidence when the
ballots are lost, destroyed, tampered or fake.
A: No. In assuming the office of Senator, Karen has
effectively abandoned or withdrawn this protest. Such
abandonment or withdrawal operates to render moot
the instant protest. Moreover, the dismissal of this
protest would serve public interest as it would
dissipate the aura of uncertainty as to the results of
the election. (Legarda v. De Castro, PET case no. 003,
January 18, 2008)
The order granting the said execution must state
the good reasons (Navarosa v. COMELEC, G.R. No.
157957, September 18, 2003)
Election protest v. a Quo warranto case under the
candidate for the
same office for
which the winner
filed his COC
Who received the
majority or plurality
of the votes which
were legally cast.
Whether there were
irregularities in the
conduct of the
affected its results.
A: No. The Court has invariably held that once a
winning candidate has been proclaimed, taken his
oath, and assumed office as a Member of the HOR, the
COMELEC's jurisdiction over election contests relating
to his election, returns, and qualifications ends, and
the HRET's own jurisdiction begins. Here, Kat cannot
be considered a Member of the HoR because,
primarily, she has not yet assumed office. To repeat
what has earlier been said, the term of office of a
Member of the HOR begins only “at noon on the
thirtieth day of June next following their election.”
Thus, until such time, the COMELEC retains
jurisdiction. (Reyes v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 207264, June
25, 2013)
By any voter who
is a registered
winning candidate
sought to be
disqualified ran
for office
was proclaimed
disloyalty to the
Effect if the protestant accepts a permanent
Acceptance of a permanent appointment to a regular
office during the pendency of his protest is an
abandonment of the electoral protest. The same is
true if a protestant voluntarily sought election to an
office whose term would extend beyond the expiry
date of the term of the contested office, and after
winning the said election, took her oath and assumed
office and there after continuously serves it. The
reason for this is that the dismissal of the protest
would serve public interest as it would dissipate the
aura of uncertainty as to the results of the presidential
election, thereby enhancing the all-to crucial political
stability of the nation during this period of national
recovery. (Santiago v. Ramos, P.E.T. Case No. 001,
February 13, 1996)
Function of Senate and House of Representatives
Electoral Tribunals
The Senate and the House of Representatives each
have an Electoral Tribunal which shall be the sole judge
of all contests relating to elections, returns, and
qualifications of their respective members. Such
jurisdiction begins only after a candidate has become
a member of the legislative body. The judicial review
of the decisions of these electoral tribunals is possible
only in the exercise of the SC’s extraordinary
Authority to prosecute election offenses
Q: In March 2013, COMELEC First Division issued a
resolution cancelling Kat’s CoC on the ground that she
is not a citizen of the Philippines because of her
failure to comply with the requirements of the
Citizenship Retention and Re-acquisition Act of 2003.
On April 8, 2013, Kat filed an MR claiming that she is
a natural-born Filipino citizen, but it was denied by
COMELEC on May 14 for lack of merit and declared it
final and executory. Kat, however, was proclaimed
the winner of the May 2013 elections, and took her
oath of office but is yet to assume office on June 30,
2013. Kat contends that COMELEC no longer has
jurisdiction pursuant to Sec. 17, Art. 6 of the 1897
Constitution which states that HRET has the exclusive
jurisdiction to be the “sole judge of all contests
relating to the election, returns and qualifications” of
the Members of the HOR. Is the contention of Kat
COMELEC is vested with the power of a public
prosecutor with the exclusive authority to conduct the
preliminary investigation and prosecution of election
offenses punishable under the OEC. (Sec. 265, BP 881
Q: May the COMELEC delegate such authority?
A: Yes. The COMELEC en banc may delegate such
authority to any public prosecutor but always subject
to the control and supervision of the COMELEC.
(People v. Delgado, G.R. Nos. 93419-32, September 18,
Q: In cases where the prosecutor exercises delegated
authority to conduct preliminary investigation of
election offenses and such officer, after investigation,
Political and International Law
already resolves the issue of probable cause, where
should one appeal the resolution?
election offenses. The grant of exclusive power to
investigate and prosecute cases of election offenses to
the COMELEC was not by virtue of the Constitution but
by the OEC which was eventually amended by Sec. 43
of RA 9369. Thus, the DOJ now conducts preliminary
investigation of election offenses concurrently with
the COMELEC and no longer as mere deputies.
A: From such resolution, appeal to the COMELEC lies,
and the latter’s ruling on the appeal would be
immediately final and executory. However, if the
preliminary investigation is conducted by the
COMELEC itself, appeal to the COMELEC is unavailing,
but the respondent may file a motion for
reconsideration of the resolution of the COMELEC en
banc finding probable cause. (Faelnar v.People, G.R.
Nos. 140850-51. May 4, 2000)
Clearly, COMELEC recognizes the need to delegate to
the prosecutors the power to conduct preliminary
investigation. Otherwise, the prompt resolution of
alleged election offenses will not be attained. This
delegation of power, otherwise known as deputation,
has long been recognized and, in fact, been utilized as
an effective means of disposing of various election
offense cases. Apparently, as mere deputies, the
prosecutors played a vital role in the conduct of
preliminary investigation, in the resolution of
complaints filed before them, and in the filing of the
informations with the proper court. COMELEC, though
it acts jointly with the DOJ, remains in control of the
proceedings. In no way can we say that the COMELEC
has thereby abdicated its independence to the
executive department. (Jose Miguel T. Arroyo. DOJ, et
al., G.R. No. 199082, September 18, 2012)
Election offenses
Vote buying and vote selling
Conspiracy to bribe voters
Wagering upon result of election
Coercion of subordinates
Threats, intimidation, terrorism, use of fraudulent
device or other forms of coercion
6. Coercion of election officials and employees
7. Appointment of new employees, creation of new
position, promotion, giving of salary increases
8. Intervention of public officers and employees
9. Undue influence
10. Unlawful electioneering
11. Others. (Sec. 261, BP 881 OEC)
Prescriptive period of election offenses
5 years from the date of their commission. (Sec. 267,
BP 881, OEC)
Jurisdiction of courts to hear and decide election
GR: The RTC has the exclusive and original jurisdiction
to hear and decide any criminal action or proceedings
for violation of the OEC.
XPN: The MTC has jurisdiction over offenses relating
to failure to register or failure to vote.
Q: President Gemma Tiama was accused of electoral
fraud and sabotage. COMELEC issued a Resolution
approving the creation of a COMELEC-DOJ Joint
Panel, which shall conduct preliminary investigation
on the alleged offenses and anomalies committed
during the elections. Gemma filed a petition before
the SC arguing that the Joint Panel has no jurisdiction
to conduct preliminary investigation of the electoral
sabotage cases. Is Gemma’s contention acceptable?
A: No. DOJ and COMELEC exercise concurrent
jurisdiction in conducting preliminary investigation of
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