G.R. No. 162230, August 12, 2014
ISABELITA C. VINUYA, VICTORIA C. DELA PEÑA, HERMINIHILDA MANIMBO, LEONOR H. SUMAWANG, CANDELARIA L. SOLIMAN, MARIA L. QUILANTANG, MARIA L. MAGISA, NATALIA M. ALONZO, LOURDES M. NAVARO, FRANCISCA M. ATENCIO, ERLINDA MANALASTAS, TARCILA M. SAMPANG, ESTER M. PALACIO, MAXIMA R. DELA CRUZ, BELEN A. SAGUM, FELICIDAD TURLA, FLORENCIA M. DELA PEÑA, EUGENIA M. LALU, JULIANA G. MAGAT, CECILIA SANGUYO, ANA ALONZO, RUFINA P. MALLARI, ROSARIO M. ALARCON, RUFINA C. GULAPA, ZOILA B. MANALUS, CORAZON C. CALMA, MARTA A. GULAPA, TEODORA M. HERNANDEZ, FERMIN B. DELA PEÑA, MARIA DELA PAZ B. CULALA, ESPERANZA MANAPOL, JUANITA M. BRIONES, VERGINIA M. GUEVARRA, MAXIMA ANGULO, EMILIA SANGIL, TEOFILA R. PUNZALAN, JANUARIA G. GARCIA, PERLA B. BALINGIT, BELEN A. CULALA, PILAR Q. GALANG, ROSARIO C. BUCO, GAUDENCIA C. DELA PEÑA, RUFINA Q. CATACUTAN, FRANCIA A. BUCO, PASTORA C. GUEVARRA, VICTORIA M. DELA CRUZ, PETRONILA O. DELA CRUZ, ZENAIDA P. DELA CRUZ, CORAZON M. SUBA, EMERINCIANA A. VINUYA, LYDIA A. SANCHEZ, ROSALINA M. BUCO, PATRICIA A. BERNARDO, LUCILA H. PAYAWAL, MAGDALENA LIWAG, ESTER C. BALINGIT, JOVITA A. DAVID, EMILIA C. MANGILIT, VERGINIA M. BANGIT, GUILERMA S. BALINGIT, TERECITA PANGILINAN, MAMERTA C. PUNO, CRISENCIANA C. GULAPA, SEFERINA S. TURLA, MAXIMA B. TURLA, LEONICIA G. GUEVARRA, ROSALINA M. CULALA, CATALINA Y. MANIO, MAMERTA T. SAGUM, CARIDAD L. TURLA, et al. in their capacity and as members of the “Malaya Lolas Organizations,” Petitioners, v. THE HONORABLE EXECUTIVE SECRETARY ALBERTO G. ROMULO, THE HONORABLE SECRETARY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS DELIA DOMINGO-ALBERT, THE HONORABLE SECRETARY OF JUSTICE MERCEDITAS N. GUTIERREZ, AND THE HONORABLE SOLICITOR GENERAL ALFREDO L. BENIPAYO,, Respondents.
R E S O L U T I O N
1. The contentions pertaining to the alleged plagiarism were then already lodged with the Committee on Ethics and Ethical Standards of the Court; hence, the matter of alleged plagiarism should not be discussed or resolved herein.13cralawred
2. A writ of certiorari did not lie in the absence of grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction. Hence, in view of the failure of petitioners to show any arbitrary or despotic act on the part of respondents, the relief of the writ of certiorari was not warranted.14cralawred
3. Respondents hold that the Waiver Clause in the Treaty of Peace with Japan, being valid, bound the Republic of the Philippines pursuant to the international law principle of pacta sunt servanda. The validity of the Treaty of Peace was the result of the ratification by two mutually consenting parties. Consequently, the obligations embodied in the Treaty of Peace must be carried out in accordance with the common and real intention of the parties at the time the treaty was concluded.15cralawred
4. Respondents assert that individuals did not have direct international remedies against any State that violated their human rights except where such remedies are provided by an international agreement. Herein, neither of the Treaty of Peace and the Reparations Agreement, the relevant agreements affecting herein petitioners, provided for the reparation of petitioners’ claims. Respondents aver that the formal apology by the Government of Japan and the reparation the Government of Japan has provided through the Asian Women’s Fund (AWF) are sufficient to recompense petitioners on their claims, specifically:cralawlawlibrary
- About 700 million yen would be paid from the national treasury over the next 10 years as welfare and medical services;chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary
- Instead of paying the money directly to the former comfort women, the services would be provided through organizations delegated by governmental bodies in the recipient countries (i.e., the Philippines, the Republic of Korea, and Taiwan); andChanRoblesVirtualawlibrary
- Compensation would consist of assistance for nursing services (like home helpers), housing, environmental development, medical expenses, and medical goods.16
Section 4. When and where position filed. – The petition shall be filed not later than sixty (60) days from notice of judgment, order or resolution. In case a motion for reconsideration or new trial is timely filed, whether such motion is required or not, the sixty (60) day period shall be counted from notice of the denial of said motion.
There are three essential dates that must be stated in a petition for certiorari brought under Rule 65. First, the date when notice of the judgment or final order or resolution was received; second, when a motion for new trial or reconsideration was filed; and third, when notice of the denial thereof was received. Failure of petitioner to comply with this requirement shall be sufficient ground for the dismissal of the petition. Substantial compliance will not suffice in a matter involving strict observance with the Rules. (Emphasis supplied)
The requirement of setting forth the three (3) dates in a petition for certiorari under Rule 65 is for the purpose of determining its timeliness. Such a petition is required to be filed not later than sixty (60) days from notice of the judgment, order or Resolution sought to be assailed. Therefore, that the petition for certiorari was filed forty-one (41) days from receipt of the denial of the motion for reconsideration is hardly relevant. The Court of Appeals was not in any position to determine when this period commenced to run and whether the motion for reconsideration itself was filed on time since the material dates were not stated. It should not be assumed that in no event would the motion be filed later than fifteen (15) days. Technical rules of procedure are not designed to frustrate the ends of justice. These are provided to effect the proper and orderly disposition of cases and thus effectively prevent the clogging of court dockets. Utter disregard of the Rules cannot justly be rationalized by harking on the policy of liberal construction.19chanrobleslaw
82. Since 1998, petitioners and other victims of the “comfort women system,” approached the Executive Department through the Department of Justice in order to request for assistance to file a claim against the Japanese officials and military officers who ordered the establishment of the “comfort women” stations in the Philippines;chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary
83. Officials of the Executive Department ignored their request and refused to file a claim against the said Japanese officials and military officers;chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary
84. Undaunted, the Petitioners in turn approached the Department of Foreign Affairs, Department of Justice and Office of the of the Solicitor General to file their claim against the responsible Japanese officials and military officers, but their efforts were similarly and carelessly disregarded;20chanrobleslaw
All these do not mean, however, that procedural rules are to be ignored or disdained at will to suit the convenience of a party. Procedural law has its own rationale in the orderly administration of justice, namely: to ensure the effective enforcement of substantive rights by providing for a system that obviates arbitrariness, caprice, despotism, or whimsicality in the settlement of disputes. Hence, it is a mistake to suppose that substantive law and procedural law are contradictory to each other, or as often suggested, that enforcement of procedural rules should never be permitted if it would result in prejudice to the substantive rights of the litigants.
As we have repeatedly stressed, the right to file a special civil action of certiorari is neither a natural right nor an essential element of due process; a writ of certiorari is a prerogative writ, never demandable as a matter of right, and never issued except in the exercise of judicial discretion. Hence, he who seeks a writ of certiorari must apply for it only in the manner and strictly in accordance with the provisions of the law and the Rules.
Herein petitioners have not shown any compelling reason for us to relax the rule and the requirements under current jurisprudence. x x x. (Emphasis supplied)chanrobleslaw
Section 1. Petition for certiorari.—When any tribunal, board or officer exercising judicial or quasi-judicial functions has acted without or in excess of its or his jurisdiction, or with grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction, and there is no appeal, nor any plain, speedy, and adequate remedy in the ordinary course of law, a person aggrieved thereby may file a verified petition in the proper court, alleging the facts with certainty and praying that judgment be rendered annulling or modifying the proceedings of such tribunal, board or officer, and granting such incidental reliefs as law and justice may require.
The petition shall be accompanied by a certified true copy of the judgment, order, or resolution subject thereof, copies of all pleadings and documents relevant and pertinent thereto, and a sworn certification of non-forum shopping as provided in the third paragraph of Section 3, Rule 46.
(a) The applicant has a clear and unmistakable right, that is, a right in esse;chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary
(b) There is a material and substantial invasion of such right; andChanRoblesVirtualawlibrary
(c) There is an urgent need for the writ to prevent irreparable injury to the applicant; and no other ordinary, speedy, and adequate remedy exists to prevent the infliction of irreparable injury.26
It is basic that the issuance of a writ of preliminary injunction is addressed to the sound discretion of the trial court, conditioned on the existence of a clear and positive right of the applicant which should be protected. It is an extraordinary, peremptory remedy available only on the grounds expressly provided by law, specifically Section 3, Rule 58 of the Rules of Court. Moreover, extreme caution must be observed in the exercise of such discretion. It should be granted only when the court is fully satisfied that the law permits it and the emergency demands it. The very foundation of the jurisdiction to issue a writ of injunction rests in the existence of a cause of action and in the probability of irreparable injury, inadequacy of pecuniary compensation, and the prevention of multiplicity of suits. Where facts are not shown to bring the case within these conditions, the relief of injunction should be refused.28
1Rollo, pp. 419-429.
2 Id. at 435-529.
3 75 Phil. 563 (1945).
4 83 Phil. 171 (1949).
5 G.R. No. 101949, December 1, 1994, 238 SCRA 524.
6 G.R. No. 76607, February 26, 1990, 182 SCRA 644.
7 No. L-49112, February 2, 1979, 88 SCRA 195.
8 Supra note 1.
9 Id. at 426-427.
10 Id. at 427-428.
11 Id. at 436.
12 Id. at 665-709.
13 Id. at 684-685.
14 Id. at 686-690.
15 Id. at 690-702.
16 Id. at 703-706.
17 G.R. No. 146068, August 31, 2006, 500 SCRA 399, 403-404.
18 G.R. No. 141947, July 5, 2001, 360 SCRA 521, 527-528.
19 Id. at 527-528.
20Rollo, p. 18.
21 G.R. No. 152336, June 9, 2005, 460 SCRA 55, 66.
22Buyco v. Baraquia, G.R. No. 177486, December 21, 2009, 608 SCRA 699, 703-704.
23 Id. at 704.
24Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Monetary Board v. Antonio-Valenzuela, G.R. No. 184778, October 2, 2009, 602 SCRA 698, 715, citing Lim v. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. 134617, February 13, 2006, 482 SCRA 326, 331.
25 I Regalado, Remedial Law Compendium, Seventh Revised Edition, p. 638.
26Philippine Leisure and Retirement Authority v. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. 156303, December 19, 2007, 541 SCRA 85,99-100.
27 G.R. No. 141849, February 13, 2007, 515 SCRA 577.
28 At 589.
[T]he phrase "comfort women" does not in the least reflect the suffering, such as multiple rapes on an veryday basis and severe physical abuse, that women victims had to endure during their forced prostitution and sexual subjugation and abuse in wartime. The Special Rapporteur, therefore, considers with conviction that the phrase "military sexual slaves" represents a much more accurate and appropriate terminology.1
Grave breaches to which the preceding Article relates shall be those involving any of the following acts, if committed against persons or property protected by the present Convention: wilful killing, torture or inhuman treatment, including biological experiments, wilfully causing great suffering or serious injury to body or health, unlawful deportation or transfer or unlawful confinement of a protected person, compelling a protected person to serve in the forces of a hostile Power, or wilfully depriving a protected person of the rights of fair and regular trial prescribed in the present Convention, taking of hostages and extensive destruction and appropriation of property, not justified by military necessity and carried out unlawfully and wantonly.
No High Contracting Party shall be allowed to absolve itself or any other High Contracting Party of any liability incurred by itself or by another High Contracting Party in respect of breaches referred to in the preceding Article. (Emphases supplied)
A belligerent Party which violates the provisions of the said Regulations shall, if the case demands, be liable to pay compensation. It shall be responsible for all acts committed by persons forming part of its armed forces. (Emphases supplied)
Considering the losses and suffering the Philippines sustained as a result of the Pacific War, these terms do not come up to the generally accepted concept of reparations as compensation for damage done and injury suffered.
Judged, however, from the point of view of the requirements of our national interest and viewed in the light of the practical realities posed by the political and economic situation obtaining in both countries as well as in their part of the world, I subscribe to the conclusion reached by the Philippine Panel of Negotiators that this settlement is the best that can be obtained under the circumstances x x x.49
(a) It is recognized that Japan should pay reparations to the Allied Powers for the damage and suffering caused by it during the war. Nevertheless it is also recognized that the resources of Japan are not presently sufficient if it is to maintain a viable economy, to make complete reparations for all such damage and suffering and at the same time meet its other obligations.
- Japan will promptly enter into negotiations with Allied Powers so desiring, whose present territories were occupied by Japanese forces and damaged by Japan, with a view to assisting to compensate those countries for the cost of repairing the damage done, by making available the services of the Japanese people in production, salvaging and other work for the Allied Powers in question. Such arrangements shall avoid the imposition of additional liabilities on other Allied Powers, and, where the manufacturing of raw materials is called for, they shall be supplied by the Allied Powers in question, so as not to throw any foreign exchange burden upon Japan.
- x x x x
"(b) Except as otherwise provided in the present Treaty, the Allied Powers waive all reparation claims of the Allied Powers, other claims of the Allied Powers and their nationals arising out of any actions taken by Japan and nationals in the course of the prosecution of the war, and claims of the Allied Powers for direct military costs of occupation. (Emphases supplied)
Japan, by way of reparations, shall supply the Republic of the Philippines with the services of the Japanese people and the products of Japan in the form of capital goods, the total value of which will be so much in yen as shall be equivalent to five hundred fifty million United States dollars ($550,000,000) at present computed at one hundred ninetyeight billion yen (Y198,000,000,000), within the period and in the manner hereinafter prescribed.
The supply of the services and products referred to in the preceding Article shall be made on an annual average of so much in yen as shall be equivalent to twenty-five million United States dollars ($25,000,000) at present computed at nine billion yen (Y9,000,000,000), during the ten-year period from the date of coming into force of the present Agreement; and on an annual average of so much in yen as shall be equivalent to thirty million United States dollars ($30,000,000) at present computed at ten billion eight hundred million yen (Y10,800,000,000), during the succeeding ten-year period. However, by agreement between the two Governments, this latter period may be reduced to a period shorter than ten years, provided the outstanding balance is settled in full within the remainder of the reduced period.
1. In the discharge of the reparations obligation under Article 1 of the present Agreement, the Government of Japan shall, through procedures to be determined under Article 11, make payments to cover the obligations incurred by the Mission under Reparations Contracts and the expenses for the supply of services and products referred to in Article 5, paragraph 4 of the present Agreement. These payments shall be made in Japanese yen.
2. By and upon making a payment in yen under the preceding paragraph, Japan shall be deemed to have supplied the Republic of the Philippines with the services and products thus paid for and shall be released from its reparations obligation to the extent of the equivalent value in United States dollars of such yen payment in accordance with Articles 1 and 2 of the present Agreement. (Emphases supplied)
1 Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women, its Causes and Consequences, Rep. on the Mission to the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, the Republic of Korea and Japan on the Issue of Military Sexual Slavery in Wartime, Comm'n. on Human Rights, UN Doc. E/CN.4/1996/53/Add.l, at 4 (4 January 1996)(by Radhika Coomaraswamy).
2 See: E.O. 292- Administrative Code of the Philippines, Book TV, Title III, Chap. 12, Sec. 34, pars. 10 & 11.
3 Constitution, Art. II, Sec. II; Art. XIII, Sees. 1 & 18(3)
4Vinuya v. Romulo, G.R. No. 162230,28 April2010, 619 SCRA 533.
5 Id. at 560.
6 Geneva Convention for the Amelioration of the Condition of the Wounded and Sick in Armed Forces in the Field, 12 August 1949, 75 U.N.T.S. 31 (hereinafter "Geneva Convention l"); Geneva Convention for the Amelioration of the Condition of the Wounded, Sick and Shipwrecked Members of Armed Forces at Sea, 12 August 1949, 75 U.N.T.S. 85 (hereinafter "Geneva Convention II"); Geneva Convention Relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of War, 12 August 1949, 75 U.N.T.S. 135 (hereinafter "Geneva Convention III"); and Geneva Convention Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, 12 August 1949, 75 U.N.T.S. 287 (hereinafter Geneva "Convention IV").
7 OSCAR M. UHLER & HENRI COURSIER, COMMENTARY: IV GENEVA CONVENTION RELATIVE TO THE PROTECTION OF CIVILIAN PERSONS IN TIME OF WAR, 602-603 (Jean S. Pictet ed., 1958).
13 TAKUSHI OHNO, WAR REPARATIONS & PEACE SETTLEMENT: PHILIPPINES-JAPAN RELATIONS 1945-1956,
8 ( 1986); Yang Zhihui, From War Reparation to Postwar Reparation (Louisa Rubinfien trans.), in TOWARD A HISTORY BEYOND BORDERS: CONTENTIOUS ISSUES IN SINO-JAPANESE RELATIONS 374-375 (Daqing Yang, Jie Liu, Hiroshi Mitani & Andrew Gordon eds., 2012).
14 OHNO, supra.
15 OHNO, supra, at 9.
16 OHNO, supra, at II.
17 OHNO, supra; Yang Zhihui, supra note 13.
18 OHNO, supra, at 13.
19 OHNO, supra, at 18-26; JOHN F. DULLES, A PEACE TREATY IN THE MAKING (ADDRESSES AND REMARKS REGARDING THE MAKING OF THE JAPANESE PEACE TREATY AND THE CAUSE OF WORLD FREEDOM) 3-7 (1951 ); Yang Zhihui, supra note 13, at 375-377.
20 OHNO, supra, at 36.
21 OHNO, supra, at 37-38 (citing United States Memorandum to the Government on the Far Eastern Commission, in Royal Institute of International Affairs, Documents on International Affairs, 1947-1949, 615-616 ); Yang Zhihui, supra note 13, at 376.
22 OHNO, supra, at 38; See also DULLES, supra note 19, at 40-42; Yang Zhihui, supra note 13, at 376.
23 OHNO, supra, at 37 (citing John Foster Dulles, "Peace May Be Won," U.S.A. Department of State, DSB, Vol. 24 No. 605, at 255 [195 I]); See DULLES, supra note 19, at 19-21.
24 OHNO, supra (citing U.S.A., Department of State, "An Estimate of Conditions in Asia and the Pacific at the Close of the War in the Far East and the Objectives and Policies of the United States," Diplomatic Papers, 1945, Vol. VI, at 556-580 ); See DULLES, supra note 19, at 19-21.
25 OHNO, supra, at 40; Yang Zhihui, supra note 13, at 376.
26 OHNO, supra, at 39.
27 OHNO, supra, at 40 (citing The President's Inaugural Address, December 30, 1949, Official Gazette, Vol. 45 No. 12, at 5384 ).
28 OHNO, supra, at 42 (citing Truman's Envoy has long conference on Jap pact with EQ, the Manila Times, February 12, 1951, 1-2).
29 OHNO, supra.
31 Id. at 42-43; See also DULLES, supra note 19, at 48; Yang Zhihui, supra note 13, at 376.
32 OHNO, supra, at43 (citing Neri assails Dulles stand, the Manila Times, 3 March 1951, 1, 12).
33 Id.; See also DULLES, supra note 19, at48.
34 OHNO, supra.
36 Id. at 52.
37 Id. at 54.
39 Id. at 54-55 (citing Acheson's Speech, delivered on September 8, 1951, in U.S. Dep't of State Publications, Record of Proceedings of the Conference for the Conclusion and Signature of the Treaty of Peace with Japan, 175-177 ).
40 Id. at 55-56.
41 Id. at 58, 80.
42 Id. at 58.
43 Id. at 75-80.
45 Id. at 80.
46 Id. at 64-134.
47 Id. at 121.
48 President's Letter of Transmittal, reproduced in PHILIPPINE SENATE, REPARATIONS AGREEMENT, THE ANNEX THERETO, THE EXCHANGE NOTES AID THE OTHER SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS: TREATY OF PEACE WITH JAPAN, UNDERSTANDING OF THE SENATE ON CERTAIN PROVISIONS OF THE REPARATIONS AGREEMENT, 3 (1956).
49 Id. at 4.