Ang Bagong Bayani v Comelec

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  Ang Bagong Bayani v COMELEC (2001) Panganiban | June 26, 2001 Summary:  Petition for Certiorari challenging COMELEC Omnibus Resolution aro!ing articiation of 1 # organi$ations an% arties &inclu%ing those imlea%e%' in the 2001 elections( )he *ureme Court hel% that Reman%e% to COMELEC to imme%iatel+ con%uct summar+ e!i%entiar+ hearings on the uali-cations of the art+.list articiants in the light of the gui%elines enunciate%( Doctrine (Nachura):  )he art+.list s+stem is a social /ustice tool %esigne% not onl+ to gi!e more la to the great masses of our eole ho ha!e less in life, but also to enable them to become !eritable lamaers themsel!es, emoere% to articiate %irectl+ in the enactment of las %esigne% to bene-t them( t inten%s to mae the marginali$e% an%the un%erreresente% not merel+ assi!e reciients of the *tate3s bene!olence, but acti!e articiants in the mainstream of reresentati!e %emocrac+( )hus, alloing all in%i!i%uals an% grous, inclu%ing those hich no %ominate %istrict elections, to ha!e the same oortunit+ to articiate in art+.list elections oul% %esecrate this loft+ ob/ecti!e an% mongreli$e the social /ustice mechanism into an atrocious !eneer for tra%itional olitics( act!: Petitioners4 Petitioners see the %isuali-cation of ri!ate reson%ents, arguing mainl+ that the art+.list s+stem as inten%e% to bene-t the marginali$e% an% un%erreresente%5 not the mainstream olitical arties, the non.marginali$e% or o!erreresente%( !!ue!: 1( hether or not olitical arties ma+ articiate in the art+.list elections(  #e! 2( hether or not the art+.list s+stem is e7clusi!e to 3marginali$e% an% un%erreresente%3 sectors an% organi$ations( $e%&'atio: 1( Political arties are e7ressl+ alloe% to be registere%( The Constitution  and RA 7941 expressly allow political parties to be registered.   Section 2 o A *+, 14 8a art+.list s+stem of registere% national, regional an% sectoral arties or organi$ations or coalitions thereof, 7 7 7(8 *ection 9 e7ressl+ states that a 8art+8 is 8either a olitical art+ or a sectoral art+ or a coalition of arties(8 Section -. Artic%e / . Con!titution 4 8: members of the ;ouse of Reresentati!es ma+ 8be electe% through a art+.list s+stem of registere% national, regional, an% sectoral arties or organi$ations(8 Section! * an& . Artic%e  (C). Con!titution 4 8*ec( <( =o !otes cast in fa!or of a olitical art+, organi$ation, or coalition shall be !ali%, e7cet for those registere% un%er the art+.list s+stem as ro!i%e% in this Constitution(8*ec( >( Political arties, or organi$ations or coalitions registere% un%er the art+.list s+stem, shall not be reresente% in the !oters3 registration boar%s, boar%s of election insectors, boar%s of can!assers, or other similar bo%ies( ;oe!er, the+ shall be entitle% to aoint oll atchers in accor%ance ith la(8 Deliberations in the Constitutional Commission also show that this was the intent of the framers. Comm( Christian *( Monso%4 Particiants in the art+.list s+stem ma+ 8be a regional art+, a sectoral art+, a national art+, ?=@O, Magsasaa, or a regional art+ in Min%anao(8 Exchange of Comms. Jaime Tadeo and Blas Ople: 8MR( )A@EO( =aniniala ba a+o na ang art+ list a+ e%eng aghati.hatian ng ?=@O, P@P.Laban, P=P, Liberal at =acionalistaBMR( OPLE( Maaari +an saagat buas ang art+ list s+stem sa lahat ng mga arti%o(8 1  2 Margina%i3e& an& 4n&erre5re!ente& Political arties ma+ articiate in the art+.list elections but it %oes not mean that an+ olitical art+ .. or an+ organi$ation or grou for that matter .. ma+ %o so( )he reuisite character of these arties or organi$ations must be consistent ith the urose of the art+.list s+stem, as lai% %on in the Constitution 1  an% RA <#1 2 (  )he la man%ates a state olic+ of romoting roortional reresentation b+ means of the Dili art+.list s+stem, hich ill 8enable8 the election to the ;ouse of Reresentati!es of Diliino citi$ens &1' ho belong to marginali$e% an% un%erreresente% sectors, organi$ations an% arties5 an% &2' ho lac ell.%e-ne% constituencies5 but &9' ho coul% contribute to the formulation an% enactment of aroriate legislation that illbene-t the nation as a hole(  )he intent of the Constitution is clear4 to gi!e genuine oer to the eole, not onl+ b+ gi!ing more la to those ho ha!e less in life, but more so b+ enabling them to become !eritable lamaers themsel!es(ho are marginali$e% an% un%erreresente% sectors to be reresente% un%er the art+.list s+stemB Section - o A *+,1  states4 8*EC( ( Registration( .. An+ organi$e% grou of ersons ma+ register as a art+, organi$ation or coalition for uroses of the art+.list s+stem b+ -ling ith the COMELEC not later than ninet+ &0' %a+s before the election a etition !eri-e% b+ its resi%ent or secretar+ stating its %esire to articiate in the art+.list s+stem as a national, regional or sectoral art+ or organi$ation or a coalition of such arties or organi$ations, attaching thereto its constitution,s, latform or rogram of go!ernment, list of ocers, coalition agreement an% other rele!ant information as the COMELEC ma+ reuire4 Pro!i%e%, that the sector shall inclu%e labor, easant, -sherfol, urban oor, in%igenous cultural communities, el%erl+, han%icae%, omen, +outh, !eterans, o!erseas orers, an% rofessionals(8  )he list is not e7clusi!e but it %emonstrates the clear intent of the la that not all sectorscan be reresente% un%er the art+.list s+stem( 1  *ection , Article F, Constitution4 8&1' )he ;ouse of Reresentati!es shall be comose% of not more than to hun%re% an% -ft+ members, unless otherise -7e% b+ la, ho shall be electe% from legislati!e %istricts aortione% among the ro!inces, cities, an% the Metroolitan Manila area in accor%ance ith the number of their resecti!e inhabitants, an% on the basis of a uniform an% rogressi!e ratio, an% those ho, as ro!i%e% b+ la, shall be electe% through a art+.list s+stem of registere% national, regional, an% sectoral arties or organi$ations(&2' )he art+.list reresentati!es shall constitute tent+ er centum of the total number of reresentati!es inclu%ing those un%er the art+ list( Dor three consecuti!e terms after the rati-cation of this Constitution, one.half of the seats allocate% to art+.list reresentati!es shall be -lle%, as ro!i%e% b+ la, b+ selection or election from the labor, easant, urban oor, in%igenous cultural communities, omen, +outh, an% such other sectors as ma+ be ro!i%e% b+ la, e7cet the religious sector(8 2  *ection 2 of RA <#148*EC( 2( @eclaration of Polic+( .. )he *tate shall romote roortional reresentation in the election of reresentati!es to the ;ouse of Reresentati!es through a art+.list s+stem of registere% national, regional an% sectoral arties or organi$ations or coalitions thereof, hich ill enable Diliino citi$ens belonging to marginali$e% an% un%erreresente% sectors, organi$ations an% arties, an% ho lac ell.%e-ne% olitical constituencies but ho coul% contribute to the formulation an% enactment of aroriate legislation that ill bene-t the nation as a hole, to become members of the ;ouse of Reresentati!es( )oar%s this en%, the *tate shall %e!elo an% guarantee a full, free an% oen art+ s+stem in or%er to attain the broa%est ossiblereresentation of art+, sectoral or grou interests in the ;ouse of Reresentati!es b+ enhancing their chances to comete for an% in seats in the legislature, an% shall ro!i%e the simlest scheme ossible(8 2   )he %eclare% olic+ of RA <#1 sees to enable certain Diliino citi$ens G seci-call+ those belonging to marginali$e% an% un%erreresente% sectors, organi$ations an% artiesG to be electe% to the ;ouse of Reresentati!es( )he la as crafte% to a%%ress the eculiar %isa%!antages of Pa+atas ho!el %ellers cannot be aroriate% b+ the mansiononers of Dorbes Par( hile the business moguls an% the are, numericall+ seaing, a tin+ minorit+, the+ are neither marginali$e% nor un%erreresente%, for the star realit+ is that their economic clout engen%ers olitical oer more aesome than their numerical limitation( )ra%itionall+, olitical oer %oes not necessaril+ emanate from the si$e of one3s constituenc+5 in%ee%, it is liel+ to arise more %irectl+ from the number an% amount of one3s ban accounts(t is ironic, therefore, that the marginali$e% an% un%erreresente% in our mi%st are the ma/orit+ ho allo in o!ert+, %estitution an% in-rmit+( t as for them that the art+.list s+stem as enacte% .. to gi!e them not onl+ genuine hoe, but genuine oer5 to gi!e them the oortunit+ to be electe% an% to reresent the seci-c concerns of their constituencies5 an% siml+ to gi!e them a %irect !oice in Congress an% in the larger aHairs of the *tate( n its noblest sense, the art+.list s+stem trul+ emoers the masses an% ushers a ne hoe for genuine change( Feril+, it in!ites those marginali$e% an% un%erreresente% in the ast G the farm han%s, the -sher fol, the urban oor, e!en those in the un%ergroun% mo!ement G to come out an% articiate, as in%ee% man+ of them came out an% articiate% %uring the last elections( )he *tate cannot no %isaoint an% frustrate them b+ %isabling an% %esecrating this social /ustice !ehicle(Crucial to the resolution of this case is the fun%amental social /ustice rincile that those ho ha!e less in life shoul% ha!e more in la( )he art+.list s+stem is one such tool inten%e% to bene-t those ho ha!e less in life( t gi!es the great masses of our eole genuine hoe an% genuine oer( t is a message to the %estitute an% the re/u%ice%, an% e!en to those in the un%ergroun%, that change is ossible( t is an in!itation for themto come out of their limbo an% sei$e the oortunit+(IProce%ural issue s ! # applicable$ s there no other plain speedy remedy a%ailable$   )his case resents an e7cetion to the rule that certiorari shall lie onl+ in the absence of an+ other lain, see%+ an% a%euate reme%+( )he case is imbue% ith ublic interest an% ith e7treme urgenc+, for it otentiall+ in!ol!es the comosition of 20 ercent of the;ouse of Reresentati!es, it raises transcen%ental constitutional issues on the art+.list s+stemFitug an% Men%o$a %issente%( =either te7tual nor historical consi%eration +iel%s suort for the !ie that the art+.list s+stem is %esigne% e7clusi!el+ for labor, easant, urban oor, in%igenous cultural communities, omen, an% +outh sectors: )here is no reason h+ the+ shoul% not be able to mae common goals ith mass organi$ations so that the !er+ lea%ershi of these arties can be transforme% through the articiation of mass organi$ations((( n time, e ma+ %e!elo the e7cellent s+stem that the+ ha!e in Euroe here labor organi$ations an% cooerati!es, for e7amle, %istribute themsel!es either in the *ocial @emocratic Part+ an% the Christian @emocratic Part+ in Kerman+, an% their !er+ resence there has a transforming eHect uon the hilosohies an% the lea%ershi of those arties( 3
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