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How People Participate in Governance in the Philippines

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Talk by Nene Pimentel before concerned citizens at the AHI Office, Makati, on April 27, 2015

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How People Participate in Governance in the Philippines

  1. 1. HOW PEOPLE PARTICIPATE IN GOVERNANCE in the Philippines Talk by Nene Pimentel before concerned citizens at the AHI Office, Makati, on April 27, 2015
  2. 2. We are talking here of people who are not themselves serving in government. We are talking of people who are strictly speaking outside government service But, who are responsible for putting people in public service or working with the latter without holding public office.
  3. 3. BASIC CONSTITUTIONAL PRINCIPLE Sovereignty resides in the people and all government authority emanates from them.
  4. 4. PEOPLE PUT GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS IN PUBLIC OFFICE: THROUGH ELECTIONS  National Elections  Regional Elections  Local Elections  Barangay Elections  (SK Elections)
  7. 7. ELECTED LOCALLY 1. By Province: Members of the House, Governor, Vice Governor, Members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan; 2. By City* or Municipality: Mayor, Vice Mayor, Members of the Sangguniang Panlungsud or Bayan; *Some Cities elect their own Representatives 3. By Barangay: Barangay Captain, Members of the Sangguniang Barangay
  8. 8. ADDITIONAL ELECTED OFFICIALS FOR SP/SB MEMBERS PROVINCES that have more than five legislative districts, each district shall have two SP members, without prejudice to the provisions of Section 2 of Republic Act No. 6637. Sangguniang Barangay members shall be elected at large. The Presidents of the league of sangguniang members of component cities and municipalities shall serve as ex officio members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan, Sangguiang Panlunsod, and Sangguiang Bayan (as amended by R.A. 8553). [MORE ON SECTORAL REPRESENTATIVES]
  9. 9. HOW LOCAL OFFICIALS ARE ELECTED (Section 41, LG Code) (a) The governor, vice governor, city mayor, city vice mayor, municipal mayor, municipal vice mayor, and punong barangay shall be elected at large in their respective units by the qualified voters therein. [However, the Sangguniang Kabataan chairman for each barangay shall be elected by the registered voters of the katipunan ng kabataan, as provided in this Code.] (b) The regular members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan, Sangguniang Panlunsod, and Sangguniang Bayan shall be elected by district as follows: 1st & 2nd class provinces shall have ten regular members; 3rd & 4th class provinces, eight; and 5th & 6th (no more class) provinces, six. - More on Election of LGU Officials -
  10. 10. PRINCIPAL LAW GOVERNING LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNITS: The Local Government Code (R.A. 7160) Enacted by Congress in compliance with the mandate of Article X of the Constitution. Fixes the structures, the powers, and the duties of, and other matters relative to the functioning of 4 local government units (LGUs): (1) the province; (2) the city; (3) the municipality, and (4) the
  11. 11. Regional Governments The regional governments envisioned by the Constitution for the ARRM and the CAR, are also local governments in the sense, among other things, that they are not the national government. But we will not discuss them here in detail. [There are 17 administrative regions of the country: 8 in Luzon; 3 in the Visayas, and 6 in Mindanao which are AGENTS of the national government NOT LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNITS].
  12. 12. HOW PEOPLE OUT OF GOVERNMENT SERVICE EXERCISE POLITICAL POWER WITH THOSE IN PUBLIC OFFICE: By joining People’s or Non-Government Organizations. This is authorized by Sections 34 and 35 of the LG Code. Under Sec. 34 - LGUs are mandated to “promote the establishment and operation of people’s and NGOs to become active partners in the pursuit of local autonomy.” In Sec. 35 – LGUs are empowered to establish Linkages with People’s Organizations and NGOs through: (a) joint ventures and (b) other cooperative arrangements.
  13. 13. OBJECTIVES of POs and NGOs working with Government: (1) delivery certain basic services; (2) capability building and livelihood projects; (3) develop local enterprises designed to improve productivity and income; (4) diversify agriculture; (5) spur rural industrialization; (6) promote ecological balance, and (7) enhance the economic and social well-being of the people.
  14. 14. LGUs MAY ASSIST NGOs Under Section 36. Assistance to People’s and Non- Governmental Organizations. LGUs are authorized - through their local chief executive and with the concurrence of the sanggunian concerned – to assist POs, and NGOs financially or otherwise in their economic, socially oriented, environmental or cultural projects within their territorial jurisdiction.
  15. 15. NGO.PO in PBACs Section 37. Local Prequalification, Bids and Awards Committee (Local PBAC). A local PBAC in every province, city and municipality is primarily responsible for the conduct of prequalification of contractors, bidding, evaluation of bids and the recommendation of awards concerning local infrastructure projects. CHAIRMAN of PBAC The governor or the city or municipal mayor shall act as the chairman. MEMBERS of PBAC (1) The chairman of the appropriations committee of the sanggunian concerned; (2) A representative of the minority party in the sanggunian concerned, if any, or if there be none, one (1) chosen by said sanggunian from among its members; (3) The local treasurer;MORE MEMBERS (4) Two representatives of NGOs that are represented in the local development council concerned, to be chosen by the organizations themselves; and (5) Any practicing CPA from the private sector, to be designated by the local chapter of the PICPA, if any.
  16. 16. COA DUTY COA Representatives shall observe the proceedings of such committee and shall certify that the rules and procedures for requalification, bids and awards have been complied with.
  17. 17. OTHER EXAMPLES OF PUBLIC OFFICES WHERE PRIVATE INDIVIDUALS MAY BECOME MEMBERS: I. LOCAL SCHOOL BOARDS Sec. 98. Creation, Composition and Compensation. Every province, city, or municipality shall have its school board. THE COMPOSITION OF LOCAL SCHOOL BOARD OF THE PROVINCE: The governor and the division superintendent of schools as co-chair; MEMBERS OF PROVINCIAL SCHOOL BOARD 1. The Chairman of the Education Committee of the SP; 2. The provincial treasurer; [3. The representative of the pederasyon ng mga Sangguniang Kabataan in the Sangguniang Panlalawigan;] 4. The duly elected president of the provincial federation of PTAs; 5. The duly elected representative of the teachers’ organizations in the province, and 6. The duly elected representative of the nonacademic personnel of public schools in the province, as members.
  18. 18. CITY SCHOOL BOARD COMPOSITION: CO-CHAIR: City Mayor and City Superintendent of Schools. MEMBERS: 1. The Chair of the education committee of the Sangguniang Panlungsod; 2. The City Treasurer; 3. [The representative of the Pederasyon ng mga Sangguniang Kabataan in the Sangguniang Panlungsod]; 4. The duly elected president of the city federation of PTAs; 5. The duly elected representative of the teacher’s organizations in the city; and 6. The duly elected representative of the nonacademic personnel of public schools in the city, as members.
  19. 19. MUNICIPAL SCHOOL BOARD COMPOSITION: CO-CHAIR: Municipal Mayor and the District Supervisor of Schools MEMBERS: 1. Chair, Education Committee, SB; 2. Municipal Treasurer; 3. [Representative of SK in SB]; 4. Duly Elected President of Municipal Federation of PTAs; 5. Duly elected President of Teachers’ Organization in the municipality; 6. Duly elected representative of the non-academic personnel of public schools in the municipality.
  20. 20. IN CASE Province or City has two or more School Superintendents, or Municipality has two or more District Supervisors: 1. The DECS shall designate the co-chair for the Provincial or City School Board; 2. The Division Superintendent of Schools shall designate the District Supervisor who shall serve as Co-Chair of the Municipal School Board.
  21. 21. Local Health Boards. (Section 102, LGC Code) Every province, city and municipality shall have their own Local Health Boards. Chair: The governor or the mayor concerned. Vice Chair: The provincial, city or municipal health officer . Members: 1. The chair of the Committee on Health of the Sanggunian concerned; 2. A representative from the private sector or NGO involved in health services; and 3. A representative of the DOH in the LGU concerned.
  22. 22. PO/NGO REPRESENTATIVE IN LOCAL HEALTH BOARDS The PO or NGO representative must come from a PO or NGO engaged in the delivery of health services. He is chosen by the NGOs or POs in health services, not by the governor or the mayor. The representative is expected to ensure that the interests of the people in health matters are upheld over narrow partisan considerations.
  23. 23. LOCAL DEVELOPMENT COUNCILS (Section 107, LG Code) Every Barangay, Municipal, City and Province shall have its own Local Development Council Composition of Local Development Councils. I. Barangay Development Council: Chair: Punong Barangay Members: (1) Members of the Sangguniang Barangay; (2) Representatives of Pos/NGOs operating in the barangay, who shall constitute not less than 1/4 of the members of the fully organized council; (3) A representative of the congressman.
  24. 24. MUNICIPAL OR CITY LOCAL DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL I. The City or Municipal Development Council Chair: The Mayor Members: (1) All punong barangays in the city or municipality; (2) Chair of the Committee on Appropriations of the Sangguniang Panlungsod or Sangguniang Bayan concerned; (3) The congressman or his representative; and (4) Representatives of NGOs in the city or municipality, who shall constitute not less than 1/4 of the members of the fully organized council.
  25. 25. Provincial Development Council Chair: The Governor Members: (1) All mayors of component cities and municipalities; (2) The chairman of the committee on appropriations of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan; (3) The congressman or his representative; and (4) Representatives of NGOs operating in the province, who shall constitute not less than 1/4 of the members of the fully organized council. Note: The LDCs may call upon any LGU official concerned or any official of national agencies or offices in the LGU to assist in the formulation of their respective development plans and public investment programs.
  26. 26. NEW DUTY OF LDCs PREPARE FOR DISASTERS, MAN-MADE OR NATURAL Under R.A. 101211 LOCAL GOVERNMENT DRRMCs I. At the Regional Level – Chair: Regional Directors of the OCDs Vice Chairs: Regional Director of DSWD, DILG, DOST & NEDA [CHAIR IN ARMM: REGIONAL GOVERNOR
  27. 27. LGU DRRMCs Every province, city and municipality shall have a DRRM Council In Barangays, DRRMC functions are assumed by the BDC LOCAL DRRM Council Chair: Governor or Mayor, Members: Heads of Local 1. Planning Development Officer; 2. DRRMO; 3. 3. DSWD; 4. 4. Agriculture; 5. 5. Gender & Development Office; 6. 6. Engineer’s Office; 7. 7. Veterinary Office; 8. Budget Officer; 9. Schools Superintendent; 10. highest officer of the AFP; 11. Provincial/City/Municipal Police; 12. Director of Fire Bureau; 13. President of ABC; 14. Red Cross representative; 15. 4 CSO members; and, 16. private sector representative.
  28. 28. FUNCTIONS OF LDRRMOs: 1. Plan, coordinate, manage activities consistent with National Council’s standards. 2. Organize, train coordinate activities; 3. Operate multi-hazard early warning system; 4. 4. conduct disaster monitoring, etc. 5. Identify hazards in their localities; 6. prepare suitable evacuation areas etc. LDRRM OFFICE In every province, city, municipality and barangay, the LDRRM OFFICE is under the office of the Local Chief Executive [Governor, Mayor or Punong Barangay]
  29. 29. BARANGAY ASSEMBLY (Sec. 397,LG code) – Composition: ALL PERSONS WHO ARE: (1) Actual residents of the barangay for not less than 6 months; (2) 15 years of age or over; (3) Citizens of our country; and (4) Duly registered in the list of barangay assembly members.
  30. 30. MEETINGS under Sec. 397 (b) – (1) WHEN: AT LEAST, TWICE A YEAR. (2) AGENDA: to discuss semestral report of the Sangguniang Barangay regarding its activities, finances, and problems of the Barangay. (3) WHO CALLS THE MEETINGS: (a) The Punong Barangay, or (b) at least, four members of the Sangguniang Barangay, or (b) Upon written petition of, at least, 5 percent of the members of the Assembly.
  31. 31. BARANGAY ASSEMBLY NOTICE OF ASSEMBLY MEETING IS REQUIRED: No barangay assembly meeting shall take place unless (a) WRITTEN NOTICE is given ONE WEEK PRIOR TO THE MEETING. EXCEPTION: Agenda deal with public safety or security. Then, notice within a reasonable time is allowed.
  33. 33. BARANGAY ASSEMBLY POWERS 1. Recommend measures for the welfare of the Barangay or of their City or Municipality 2. Initiate proposals to enact or amend any ordinance of the LGU concerned; 3. Hear and act on Semestral Report of Sangguniang Barangay.
  34. 34. NATIONAL PEACE AND ORDER COUNCIL COMPOSITION: SAME AS NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL. Chair: S-DILG Members: 1. Director General of the NSC; 2. Executive Secretary; 3. DFA Secretary; 4. DOJ Secretary; 5. Press Secretary; 6. Chair, Dangerous Drugs Board; 7. Presidential Adviser on Peace Process; 8. Director-General, Presidential Management Staff; 9. Director-General, PIA; 10. Chair, Presidential Anti-Graft Commission; 11. C-Staff, AFP; 12. Chief, PNP; 13. Director, NBI, and three representatives from the private sector appointed by the President.
  35. 35. LAW AND ORDER COUNCIL Every province, city or municipality is required to have its own LOCAL PEACE AND ORDER COUNCIL (Sec. 116, LG Code) THE NAME SHOULD BE LAW AND ORDER COUNCIL. COMPOSITION: LAW & ORDER COUNCIL PROVINCE: Chair: Governor Members: 1. SP representative chosen by it; 2. DSWD Officer; 3. Information Officer; 4. Health Officer; 5. PNP Director; 6. CHR Officer; 7. Army Commanding General; 8. NBI officer; 9. National Security Council Officer; 10. Provincial Prosecutor’s Office; 11. DILG officer; 12. Dangerous Drugs Board officer; 13. three representatives of POs/NGOs coming from academic, civic and religious sectors appointed by the governor.
  36. 36. REGIONAL LAW AND ORDER COUNCIL (Executive Order No. 739 of President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, August 19, 2008 Chair: Appointed by S-DILG and approved by the President Members: 1. Governors, Mayors of Highly Urbanized Cities, Presidents of the League of Municipalities; 2. Regional counterparts of the members of the national law and order council; 3. One representative from Mayors of Component Cities chosen by them; and 4. Three representatives from the private sector appointed by the Chair of the Regional Peace and Order Council with the approval of the S-DILG.
  37. 37. COMPOSITION: CITY OR MUNICIPAL LAW AND ORDER COUNCIL Chair: Mayor Members: Officer Counterparts of the Provincial Law and Order Council Members FUNCTIONS/DUTIES OF PEACE/ORDER COUNCILS 1. Formulate Strategies to respond to law and order problems; 2. Coordinate law and order plans; 3. Be a forum for dialogue on problems of law and order; 4. Perform such other duties as President may direct; 5. Monitor livelihood and infrastructure programs and projects. Note: CVOs shall be supervised by PNP Directors concerned
  38. 38. PRESIDENT/ CONGRESS/ PRESIDENT BDC Mun./City Dev’t Council Regional Dev’t Council Provincial Dev’t Council Development Funds Regional Provincial City/Municip al Barangay Simply put, the Slide’s message is that what smaller units of government can do, should be left to them to do. And that every inch of the way, public participation, discussion and debate is the name of the game. By the way, getting the private sector involved in the planning, awarding, and execution of government contracts should help reduce occasions for public officials to succumb to corruption. Here's a Slide that shows how government projects and programs are supposed to be conceptualized and brought to fruition. The Slide illustrates how the Principle of Subsidiarity works. PRINCIPLE OF SUBSIDIARITY 38
  39. 39. 39 0 50 100 150 200 250 300 350 400 20.3 36.12 46.13 52.04 56.59 71.04 80.99 96.78 111.77 111.77 134.42 141 141 151.6 166 183.94 210 249 265.8 286.2 273.5 302.3 341.54 389.86 AmountinBillion Pesos FUNDS GOING TO LGUs RUN INTO BILLIONS OF PESOS
  40. 40. IPs’ sectoral reps in the SBs. Who are the IPs? Simply put, these are tribal Filipinos who have mainly retained their cultural traditions that distinguish them from Christian and Muslim Filipinos. The more precise description of “Indigenous Peoples” is found in the Indigenous People’s Rights Act (Republic Act No. 8371): “Indigenous Cultural Communities/Indigenous Peoples refer to a group of people or homogenous societies identified by self-ascription and ascription by others, who have continuously lived as organized community on communally bounded and defined territory, and who have, under claims of ownership since time immemorial occupied, possessed, and utilized such territories, sharing common bonds of language, customs, traditions, and other distinctive cultural traits, or who have, through resistance to political, social and cultural inroads of colonization, non-indigenous religions and cultures, became historically differentiated from the majority of Filipinos.
  41. 41. ADDITIONAL DESCRIPTION OF IPs: “ICCs/IPs shall likewise include peoples who are regarded as indigenous on account of their descent from the populations which inhabited the country, at the time of conquest or colonization, or at the time of inroads of non-indigenous religions or cultures, or the establishment of present state boundaries, who retain some or all of their own social, economic, cultural and political institutions, but who may have been displaced from their traditional domains or who may have resettled outside their ancestral domains.”.” A fast research indicates that the IPs in Northern Luzon mainly consist of the "various Igorot tribes, a group that includes the Bontoc, Ibaloi, Ifugao, Isneg, Kalinga, Kankana-ey and Tinguians.” the Gaddangs of the border between Kalinga-Apayao, and Isabela provinces and the Ilongots of Nueva Vizcaya Province and Caraballo Mountains.
  42. 42. IPs in the Visayas and Mindanao In Western Visayas, the Mangyans of Mindoro. In Mindanao, they are collectively called, Lumad, but there are really several tribal groups that are identified as: 1. Manobos in Bukidnon Province; 2. Bagobos, Mandayas, and Mansakas in the mountains bordering the Davao Gulf; 3. Subanons of upland areas in the Zamboanga; 4. Mamanuas in the Agusan-Surigao border region; 5. Bila-an, Tiruray and Tboli in the Cotabato provinces; and 6. Samals and Bajaus in the Sulu archipelago.
  43. 43. IP sector reps good for ICCs and the Nation Obviously, It is the Indigenous Peoples who would benefit directly, and the nation too, if their sectoral representatives are seated in the Municipal Councils of the places where they predominate - as suggested by the topic under discussion. Unfortunately, up to this very date, the sectoral representatives have yet to be elected. There were strong objections to seating them in the Sangguniang Bayan (as well as in other LGU law-making bodies). The reason, I suggest, is turf. The regular members of the Sanggunian Bayan do not want to dilute their powers and perks with the sectoral representatives. Which is a pity.
  44. 44. DELAY PREJUDICES IP RIGHTS Had the sectoral representatives of the cultural, tribal groups of IPs been activated, they would have already began earnestly to promote their just causes and aspirations, especially in the protection of their Ancestral Domain, their tribal lands, and other interests since 1990 when the Local Government Code was approved. As it is, the tribal rights of the IPs in the area of local governance have only been ambiguously recognized, and therefore, to that extent the IPs have been unnecessarily prejudiced.
  45. 45. GOVERNMENT ACTS TO ACTIVATE SECTORAL REPRESENTATION IN LGUs The government passed certain acts that were intended to activate the sectoral representatives in the local legislative councils: I. On November 14, 1975, President Ferdinand Marcos issued Presidential Decree No. 826 that authorized him or by his duly representative to appoint as many sectoral representatives as there are members of the Sangguniang xxx Bayan. Presidential Decree No. 826
  46. 46. MORE EXAMPLES: II. On December 22, 1979, Batas Pambansa Blg. 51, Sec. 4, provided for the sectoral representatives in ... the municipalities Batas Pambansa Blg. 51 to be appointed by the President (Prime Minister) "whenever, as determined by the SB, the said sectors are of sufficient number in the municipality to warrant representation after consultation with associations and persons belonging to the sector concerned. "
  47. 47. III. February 10, 1983, Batas Pambansa Blg. 337 enacted the Local Government Code of 1983 that ordained that: Unless otherwise provided by law, the present manner of election/appointment of representatives of the agricultural and industrial labor sectors to the sangguniang panlungsod or sangguniang bayan, as the case may be, shall be maintained." Batas Pambansa Blg. 337
  48. 48. IV. In 1987, the Philippine Constitution in its Article X ordained that: "Legislative bodies of local governments shall have sectoral representation as may be prescribed by law." That law, however, still has to be enacted.V. On August 24, 1990, the Supreme Court en banc ruled on the meaning of that constitutional mandate in the case of Supangan, Jr. v. Santos (G.R. No. 84663): The phrase "as may be prescribed by law" does not and cannot, by its very wording, restrict itself to the uncertainty of future legislation.
  49. 49. VI. One year later, on October 10, 1991, Republic Act No. 7160, the Local Government Code of 1991, was passed. The Code fixed in Section 41 the manner of election of the: The governor, vice-governor xxx municipal mayor, municipal vice-mayor, and punong barangay.They shall be elected at large in their respective units by the qualified voters therein. xxx The regular members of the sangguniang panlalawigan, xxx and sangguniang bayan shall be elected by district, as may be provided for by law. Sangguniang barangay members shall be elected at large. The presidents of the leagues of sanggunian members of xxx municipalities shall serve as ex officio members of the sangguniang panlalawigan concerned. Incidentally, the LGC brought billions of pesos into LGU coffers.
  50. 50. EX-OFFICIO MEMBERS IN SP/SB The presidents of the "liga ng mga barangay xxx elected by their respective chapters, as provided in this Code, shall serve as ex officio members of the sangguniang panlalawigan, xxx and sangguniang bayan. In addition to the regular members, there shall be one sectoral representative from the women, one from the workers, and one from any of the following sectors: the urban poor (OR) indigenous cultural communities (or) disabled persons, or any other sector as may be determined by the sanggunian concerned within ninety (90) days prior to the holding of the next local elections as may be provided for by law. COMELEC was mandated by law to promulgate the rules and regulations that would govern the election of sectoral representatives.
  51. 51. COMPOSITION OF SANGGUNIANG BAYAN: Sec. 446. Composition. – (a) The sangguniang bayan, the legislative body of the municipality, shall be composed of the municipal vice mayor as the presiding officer, the regular sanggunian members, the president of the municipal chapter of the liga ng mga barangay, xxx and the sectoral representatives as members. The sectoral representatives designated by the Code follow: (a) one from the women; (b) one from the agricultural or industrial workers, and (c) one from other sectors, including the urban poor, (or) indigenous cultural communities, or disabled persons and as … determined by the sanggunian concerned within ninety (90) days prior to the holding of local elections. The regular members of the sangguniang bayan and the sectoral representatives shall be elected in the manner as may be provided for by law."
  52. 52. VII. On November 26, 1991, the Synchronized Elections Law (R.A. 7166) was enacted into law. It’s Section 3 set the manner of electing the members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan and the Sangguniang Bayan: “For purposes of the regular elections on May 11, 1992, elective members of the Sangguniang Panlungsod and Sangguniang Bayan shall be elected at large in accordance with existing laws. However, beginning with the regular elections in 1995, they shall be elected by district. COMELEC “shall promulgate rules and regulations to effectively provide for the election of sectoral representatives in the implementation of the Local Government Code."
  53. 53. COMELEC FLIP-FLOPS VIII. On October 27, 1992, the COMELEC issued Resolutions No. 2515 and Resolution No. 2517 that laid down the rules and the dates for the elections of the city and municipal sectoral representatives for March 26, 1993, and for the provincial sectoral representatives for April 16, 1993. IX. On March 11, 1993, the COMELEC issued Resolution No. 2575 that suspended the elections of local sectoral representatives. The act of the COMELEC suspending the elections of the sectoral representatives could have been triggered by the opposition of the League of Municipalities through a formal resolution (No. 6) dated August 27, 1992. Having sectoral representatives would only worsen the financial burdens of the municipalities, the LMP averred. Four months later, the Philippine Councilors' League followed the example of the LMP by manifesting its opposition to the move on December 1, 1992. The sectoral groups, however, did not take things sitting down.
  54. 54. MANDAMUS IN SUPREME COURT On July 7, 1993, eight sectoral organizations filed a mandamus case with the Supreme Court. They sought to compel the Comelec to set the date for the elections of sectoral representatives. They argued that contrary to the position of those opposing the seating of the sectoral representatives, adequate legal bases existed for calling of the elections of sectoral representatives. They cited the Local Government Code of 1991 and the Synchronized Elections Law of 1991. Moreover, the petitioners argued that unless they are represented in the in local legislative bodies as ordained in Article X of the Constitution, they are being deprived of a fundamental right. The case was, however, dismissed by the Supreme Court on the ground that there was “no justiciable controversy.”
  55. 55. COMELEC TRIES TO RECTIFY FAILURES XII. On January 17, 1995, the Comelec tried to rectify its failures to call for the elections of the sectoral representatives by issuing Resolution No. 2753. This time, the election body fixed the rules and regulations governing the elections of sectoral representatives to be synchronized with the national-local elections of May 8, 1995. The good intentions of the Comelec, however, were again frustrated because of the enactment of Republic Act No. 7887. The law caused the Resolution to be withdrawn as is explained more in detail hereunder.
  56. 56. LAW TRIES TO CLEAR UP PROBLEM XII. On February 20, 1995, Republic Act No. 7887 was passed. It amended Section 3 of Republic Act No. 7166 in this manner: "The Commission shall promulgate rules and regulations to effectively implement the provisions of law which may hereafter be enacted providing for the election of sectoral representatives." The law made clear that the Comelec could only draw up the guidelines for the election of the sectoral
  57. 57. FAULTY PREMISE Republic Act No. 7887 - that has been cited as authorizing the election of sectoral representatives - reveals the faulty premise of its supposed mandate. The law states that "the Commission shall promulgate rules and regulations to effectively implement the provisions of law which may hereafter be enacted providing for the election of sectoral representatives. It appears, therefore, that the so-called authority in Republic Act No. 7887 to call for the election of sectoral representatives is made subject to the future legislation. Republic Act No. 7887
  58. 58. NAGA EXAMPLE On December 20, 1995, Jesse Robredo, the dynamic mayor of Naga City, approved an ordinance (No. 1995-092) that provided that: There shall be one (1) representative in the Sangguniang Panlungsod from each of the (1)non-agricultural labor, (2) women and (3) urban poor sectors of the city who shall be elected from among the members of the accredited NGOs and POs in each sector.”
  59. 59. The effectivity of the Ordinance in its Section 17, however, was made dependent when xxx the relevant provisions on sectoral representation of Republic Act No. 7160, otherwise known as the Local Government Code of 1991, are actually implemented on a national scale. WHAT’S MISSING HERE? What, then, is needed to be done to seat the sectoral representatives in the concerned LGU legislative body? First, a law that would clearly enable the sectors mentioned in the Local Government to be represented in the legislative bodies of the LGUs where appropriate, meaning wherever they have sufficient numbers to justify their being so represented. 2. In the meantime, we probably have to rely mainly on the Indigenous People’s Rights Act.
  60. 60. NUMEROUS IPRA RIGHTS Under this Act, several IP rights are recognized. Specifically, in Section 16 of IPRA, the following is provided: “Right to Participate in Decision Making. ICCs/IPs have the right to participate fully, if they so choose, at all levels of decision making in matters which may affect their rights, lives and destinies through procedures determined by them as well as to maintain and develop their own indigenous political structures. Consequently, the State shall ensure that the ICCs/IPs shall be given mandatory representation in policy making bodies and other local legislative councils.”
  61. 61. MANDATORY REPRESENTATION In Section 6 of the IRR of IPRA, the following is stated: “Mandatory Representation in Policy Making Bodies. The ICCs/IPs shall be provided mandatory representation in all policy making bodies and in local legislative councils. ICC/IP representation shall be proportionate to their population, and shall have the same privileges as the regular members of the legislative bodies and/or policy making bodies.
  62. 62. Other Provisions Applicable to Local Government Units CHAPTER II Local Initiative and Referendum SECTION 120. Local Initiative Defined. – Local initiative is the legal process where the registered voters of a local government unit may directly propose, enact, or amend any ordinance.
  63. 63. LOCAL INITIATIVE AND REFERENDUM COMMENT: As early as 1911, the power of initiative was already a popular device in many cities and states of the United States. In our country, it was only in 1986, during the deliberations of the Constitutional Commission, that the power of initiative was put into the 1987 Constitution. The 1987 Constitution provides in Section 32, Article VI that “(t)he Congress shall, as early as possible, provide for a system of initiative and referendum, and the exceptions therefrom, whereby the people can directly propose and enact laws or approve or reject any act or law or part thereof passed by the Congress or local legislative body.…”
  64. 64. INITIATIVE & REFERENDUM In Section 3, Article X of the Constitution such powers are included and they are to be exercised by the people. This section of the Constitution mandates, among other things, that the LG Code which Congress shall enact shall “provide for a more responsive and accountable local government structure instituted through a system of decentralization with effective mechanisms for … initiative and referendum ….” Additional Comments:
  65. 65. Section 120 of the LG Code fleshes out the Constitutional mandate on INITIATIVE and REFERENDUM : > Empowers Voters to Legislate. The registered voters in an LGU may propose, enact, amend and even repeal ordinances under certain circumstances. It recognizes the people’s power to make local laws or ordinances even if they are not duly elected members of the local legislative councils or sanggunians.  Direct Initiative. The initiative discussed here is the direct initiative (as distinguished from indirect initiative) where the voters start the legislative process for the enactment, amendment or repeal of an ordinance or resolution in the absence of positive action of the Sanggunian.  An indirect initiative as defined by R.A. 6735 is a proposal that is referred to the legislature (legislative body) for action by a required number of registered voters.
  66. 66. STRENGTHENING DEMOCRACY Initiative Strengthens Democracy. A direct initiative advances measures that are directly proposed, discussed and voted upon by the voters. Hence, it is a good means of arousing civic consciousness and training in popular, direct and democratic action. It is also a good device to check Sanggunian indifference or apathy towards measures which the people may wish enacted for the advancement of their welfare.
  67. 67. SUBJECT MATTERS OF INITIATIVES All sorts of measures may be the subject of direct initiative for as long as these are within the competence of the Sanggunian to enact. In California, for example, direct initiatives were proposed to enact a fishing control bill, to regulate the practice of chiropractors, to levy a special tax to secure a new library, to grant a franchise to a railroad company, and to prevent discrimination in the sale of housing and similar bills. Resolutions Proper Subjects of Initiative. Although this section speaks only of “ordinance,” the initiative may be continued in a resolution.
  68. 68. WHO MAY EXERCISE POWER OF INITIATIVE OR REFERENDUM? Section 121 of the LG Code empowers all registered voters of the provinces, cities municipalities and barangays to propose measures through initiative or referendum.
  69. 69. PROCEDURE IN LOCAL INITIATIVE – Sec. 122, LGCode: [The Comelec or its designated representative shall extend assistance in the formulation of the initiative proposition]: (a) Not less than 1,000 registered voters in case of provinces and cities; 100 in case of municipalities, and 50 in case of barangays, may file a petition with the Sanggunian concerned proposing the adoption, enactment, repeal, or amendment of an ordinance. (b) If no favorable action thereon is taken by the sanggunian concerned within 30 days from its presentation, the proponents, through their duly authorized and registered representatives, may invoke their power of initiative, giving notice thereof to the Sanggunian concerned. (c) The proposition shall be numbered serially starting from Roman numeral I.
  70. 70. MORE REQUIREMENTS FOR INITIATIVE: (e) Proponents shall have 90 days in case of provinces and cities; 60 days in case of municipalities, and 30 days in case of barangays, from notice mentioned in subsection (b) hereof to collect the required number of signatures. (f) The petition shall be signed before the election registrar, or his designated representatives, in the presence of a representative of the proponent and a representative of the Sanggunian concerned in a public place in the LGU, as the case may be. Stations for collecting signatures may be established in as many places as may be warranted. (g) Upon the lapse of the period herein provided, the Comelec, through its office in the LGU concerned, shall certify as to whether or not the required number of signatures has been obtained. Failure to obtain the required number defeats the proposition. (h) If the required number of signatures is obtained, the Comelec shall then set a date for the initiative during which the proposition shall be submitted to the registered voters in the LGU concerned for their approval within 60 days from the date of certification by the Comelec, as provided in subsection (g) hereof, in case of provinces and cities; 45 days in case of municipalities, and 30 days in case of barangays.
  71. 71. Section 123, LG Code: Effectivity of Local Propositions. If approved by a majority of the votes cast, it shall take effect 15 days after certification by the Comelec as if affirmative action thereon had been made by the Sanggunian and local chief executive concerned. If it fails to obtain said number of votes, the proposition is considered defeated. Section 124, LG Code: Limitations on Local Initiatives. (a) The power of local initiative shall not be exercised more than once a year. (b) Initiative shall extend only to subjects or matters which are within the legal powers of the Sanggunians to enact. (c) If at any time before the initiative is held, the Sanggunian concerned adopts in toto the proposition presented and the local chief executive approves the same, the initiative shall be cancelled. However, those against such action may, if they so desire, apply for initiative in the manner herein provided.
  72. 72. Section 125, LG Code: Limitations upon Sanggunians. Any proposition or ordinance approved through initiative and referendum shall not be repealed, modified or amended by the Sanggunian concerned within 6 months from the date of the approval thereof, and may be amended, modified or repealed by the Sanggunian within 3 years thereafter by a vote of 3/4 of all its members: Provided, That in case of barangays, the period shall be 18 months after the approval thereof.Section 126, LG Code: Local Referendum Defined. Local referendum is the legal process whereby the registered voters of LGUs may approve, amend or reject any ordinance enacted by their Sanggunian. The local referendum shall be held under the control and direction of the Comelec within 60 days in case of provinces and cities; 45 days in case of municipalities, and 30 days in case of barangays. The Comelec shall certify and proclaim the results of the said referendum.
  75. 75. RECALL ELECTIONS BY WHOM EXERCISED: By the Registered Voters of an LGU to which the local elective official subject of the Recall belongs. WHO ARE SUBJECT TO RECALL [NOTE: R.A. 9244 eliminates the Preparatory Recall Assembly] ANY ELECTIVE LGU OFFICIAL
  76. 76. PROCESS OF RECALL 1. Initiated by any registered voter in the LGU concerned. 2. Supported by registered voters concerned in the following percentages: (a) At least, 25% of voting population of not more than 20,000.FORMAL REQUIREMENTS FOR RECALL PETITIONS 1. WRITTEN PETITION 2. SIGNED BY REPRESENTATIVES OF THE PETITIONERS BEFORE THE ELECTION REGISTRAR OR HIS REPRESENTATIVE IN THE COMELEC OFFICE IN THE LGU CONCERNED
  77. 77. CONTENTS OF RECALL PETITION 1. Names and Addresses of Petitioners written and signed in legible manner; 2. The LGU to which they belong; 3. The name of the official sought to be recalled; and 4. A brief recitation of the reasons for the recall.
  78. 78. COMELEC DUTIES IN RECALL PETITIONS 1. Within 15 days from filing of Petition, certify to the sufficiency of the number of signatures of Petitioners. 2. Within 3 days from issuance of certification, (a) provide official concerned with copy of petition; (b) Cause publication of the petition in national newspaper of general circulation, and a newspaper of general circulation in the locality concerned once a week for three consecutive weeks, at the expense of the petitioners, and (c) post copies of the petition in conspicuous amd public places in the locality concerned for a period of not less 10 days or more than 20 days. UPON ISSUANCE OF THE CERTIFICATION: 3. Verify and authenticate the signatures of the petitioners; 4. Notify the representatives of the petitioners and the official sought to be recalled. They shall have the right to participate in the verification of the signatures. CHALLENGES contesting the authenticity of the signatures shall be decided
  79. 79. WHEN RECALL ELECTIONS SET After the lapse of 15 days when the challenges contesting the authenticity of the signatures (and the required number of petitioners) shall have been disposed of, the Comelec or its duly authorized representative shall announce that candidates for the position, including the official sought to be recalled, are now being accepted. The Recall Elections of the barangay, municipal or city official concerned shall be held by order of the Comelec or its duly authorized representative within 30 days after the procedure described above shall have been done. The Recall Elections of the provincial official concerned shall be held within 45 days after the procedure stated earlier shall have been done.
  80. 80. PEOPLE OUT OF GOVERNEMNT ALSO PARTAKE OF LEGISLATIVE POWER WHEN THEY VOTE IN PLEBISCITES Briefly, plebiscite is the electoral process by which a proposal to amend or revise the Constitution is submitted to the people for their approval or rejection.
  81. 81. THANK YOU