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HUMAN RIGHTS LAW

CHAPTER 1 NATURE OF HUMAN RIGHTS

INTRODUCTION
Human Rights law branch of public law that deals with the body of laws, rules,
procedures, and institutions designed to respect, promote and protect human rights
and the national, regional and international levels
UN Charter
o reaffirm faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the
human person, in the equal rights of men and women and of the nations large
and small
o to promote social programs and better standards of life in larger freedom
1987 Constitution Article 2 Sec 11
o State value the dignity of every h
o uman person and guarantees full respect for human rights
1984 Universal Declaration of Human Rights
o basic source of human rights
CHAPTER 1 THE NATURE OF HUMAN RIGHTS

Definition
aggregate of privileges, claim, benefits, entitlements and moral guarantees that
pertain to man because of his humanity
system of values or elements which are inherent to human dignity
why does man have rights? human person possesses rights because of the very fact
that it is a person, a whole, master of itself and of its acts and which consequently is
not merely a reason to an end but an end which must be treated as such
connection between a human person and his possession of his rights - any human
society if it is to be well ordered and productive must lay down as a foundation the
principle that ever human being is a person, and that his nature is endowed with
intelligence and full will. By virtue of this he has rights and duties flowing directly
and simultaneously from his very nature
legal and moral entitlements that have evolved as a basis for constructing how state
power is used and particularly to limit its use against the rights of citizens
Kinds/ Generation of Rights Karl Vasks division follows the French Revolutions slogans
Liberty Equality Fraternity
1st Gen of Civil and Political Rights aka 1st gen of liberty rights
o individual rights against the state and are partly seen as negative
o due to the development of democratic society
o serves as the protection of the individuals form arbitrary exercise of police
power
o examples
right to life, liberty and security of person
right against torture
right to equal protection against discrimination
right against arbitrary arrest and detention
right to a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial
tribunal
right to be presumed innocent until proven guilty
right to privacy, freedom of opinion and expression
2nd Gen of Economic, Social and Cultural rights aka 2nd generation of equality rights
o people realized that possession of first generation of liberty rights would be
valueless without the enjoyment if economic, social and cultural rights
o struggle against Comlonialism, Socialism and encyclicals of the Pope

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o

ex

right to work
right to social security
right to form and to join trade unions
right to education
right to rest and leisure
right to health
right to shelter
3rd Gen Solidarity or Collective rights aka 3rd generation of solidarity rights
o benefits individuals, groups and people
o realization will need global cooperation based on international solidarity
o examples
right to peace
right to development
environmental rights
right of self determination
right to food
rights of women
rights of children
right to humanitarian disaster relief
right to water

Principles
Universality
o rights belong to and are to be enjoyed by all human beings without distinction
of any kind, such as race, color, sex or language, religion, political and other
opinion, national or social origin, property , birth or other stature
o HR belongs to everyone wherever they are because they are human beings
endowed with dignity
o Internationally recognized human rights are the basic core minimum to be
observed everywhere without regional differences
o HR belongs to everyone, everywhere by virtue of being human
o no one, no group, no place in the world should be denied the enjoyment of
human rights
Indivisibility and Interdependence
o first generation of liberty rights and second generation of equality rights are
inter related and are co equal in importance
o forms an indivisible whole and only if these rights are guaranteed that an
individual can live decently and in dignity
o international community must treat human rights in equal manner, same
footing and same emphasis
o we cannot enjoy civil and political rights unless we enjoy economic, cultural
and social rights must enjoy economic cultural and social rights (equality)
to be able to enjoy civil and political rights (liberty)
Characteristics
Inherent
o rights are the birthright of all human beings
o exists independently of the will of either individual human being or group
o not obtained and granted through any human action or intervention
o when one is born, he carries with them these rights, they cannot be separated
or detached from him

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Inalienable
o no person can deprive any person these rights and no person can repudiate
these rights by himself
o rights cannot be subject of the commerce of man
Universal
o rights belong to every human being no matter what he or she is like
o promotion and protection are the duty of all states, regardless of cultural,
economic or political systems

Stages
Idealization
o notions about human rights have started in the realm of ideas that reflect a
consciousness against oppression, dehumanization or inadequate
performance by the state
Positivization
o support for the ideas become strong
o stage is set to incorporate them in o some legal instrument, whether domestic
or international law
Realization
o last stage where these rights are enjoyed by citizens of the state by
transformation of the social economic and political order
Three Obligations of Stage Parties to International Covenants
Respect - art 2(1) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights
o indicates that the negative character of civil and political rights
o commands State Parties to refrain from restricting the exercise of these rights
where such is not expressly allowed
ex. Act 7 of ICCPR prohibits torture in absolute terms under all
circumstances
provisions which prohibit only arbitrary interference
Art 6(1) right to life
Art 17 right to privacy
provisions which authorize the state parties to impose restrictions
political freedoms in Art. 18 22
Ensure art 2(1)
o positive character of civil and political rights and economic social and cultural
rights
o state parties must be proactive to enable individuals to enjoy their rights
o obligation to adopt executive, judicial and legislative measures to provide an
effective remedy to victims of human rights violators under
o safeguard certain rights by means of procedural guarantees and legal
institutions
Protect
o preventing private individuals, groups or entities from interfering with the
individuals civil and political rights
o horizontal efforts (application of human rights between individuals or other
private subjects) depend on the wording of such rights
o ex. of provisions which apply on the horizontal level
prohibition of slavery
prohibition of advocacy of racial hatred
right to protection of law - need to take positive means to protect
children, family and rights to life liberty and equality

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1. MAYOR SIMON, JR., CARLOS QUIMPO, CARLITO ABELARDO, AND GENEROSO OCAMPO, , vs.
COMMISSION ON HUMAN RIGHTS, ROQUE FERMO, AND OTHERS AS JOHN DOES,.
warning. long case.
FACTS

Quimpo, one of the petitioners, is an Executive Officer of the QC Integrated Hawkers


Management Council under the Office of the City Mayor.
Private respondents are officers and members of the North EDSA Vendors Association
Incorporated (NEVAI).
Quimpo informed NEVAI that their stalls should be removed from the questioned
premises to give way to Peoples Park.
Quimpo later on signeda DEMOLITION NOTICE, which was sent to NEVAI
o given a grace period of 3 days (until July 12 1990) to vacate the questioned
premises of North EDSA
On July 12 1990, NEVAI, led by their Pres. Fermo filed a complaint with CHR
o NEVAI wanted CHR to write a letter to Mayor Simon to stop the demolition of
NEVAIs stalls, sari sari stores and carinderia along North EDSA
CHR issued an order in favor of NEVAI
o directing petitioners to desist from demolishing stalls and shanties at North
EDSA pending the resolution of the vendors complaint before the Commission
o ordering petitioners to appear before the HR
July 28 1990, petitioners carried out the demolition and as a result, CHR came out
with a resolution
o ordering the disbursement of financial assistance of not more than
P200,000.00 in favor of NEVAI to purchase light housing materials and food
under the Commissions supervision
o directed petitioners to desist from further demolition, with warning that
violation of order would lead to a citation for contempt and arrest
Petitioners filed a MOTION TO DISMISS but this was denied.
o questioning CHRs jurisidiction
o CHRs authoritiy should be confined only to investigation of violations of civil
and political rights, and that the right allegedly violated in this case is only a
privilege to engage in business.
Petitioners filed a petition for PROHIBITION
o praying for a restraining order and preliminary injunction
o prayed to prohibit CHR from further hearing and investigations

ISSUES

Whether or not CHR has the jurisdiction to investigate alleged violations of the
business rights of private respondents whose stalls were demolished by petitioners at
instance and authority given by the Mayor? NO.
Whether or not the CHR has the authority to issue an order to desist? NO.

HELD - petition GRANTED. The Commission on Human Rights is hereby prohibited from
further proceeding with CHR Case No. 90-1580 and from implementing the P500.00 fine for
contempt.
Powers and functions of the Commission under the 1987 Constitution

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Investigate, on its own or on complaint by any party, all forms of human rights
violations involving civil and political rights
Adopt its operational guidelines and rules of procedure, and cite for contempt for
violations thereof in accordance with the Rules of Court;
Provide appropriate legal measures for the protection of human rights of all persons
within the Philippines, as well as Filipinos residing abroad, and provide for preventive
measures and legal aid services to the underprivileged whose human rights have
been violated or need protection;
Exercise visitorial powers over jails, prisons, or detention facilities;
Establish a continuing program of research, education, and information to enhance
respect for the primacy of human rights;
Recommend to the Congress effective measures to promote human rights and to
provide for compensation to victims of violations of human rights, or their families
Monitor the Philippine Government's compliance with international treaty obligations
on human rights;
Grant immunity from prosecution to any person whose testimony or whose
possession of documents or other evidence is necessary or convenient to determine
the truth in any investigation conducted by it or under its authority;
Request the assistance of any department, bureau, office, or agency in the
performance of its functions;
Appoint its officers and employees in accordance with law; and
Perform such other duties and functions as may be provided by law.
CHR is not a quasi- judicial body
not meant by fundamental law to be another court or quasi-judicial agency
most that may be conceded to the Commission in the way of adjudicative power is
that it may investigate, receive evidence and make findings of fact as regards
claimed human rights violations involving civil and political rights.
fact finding is not adjudication, and cannot be likened to the judicial function of a
court of justice, or even a quasi-judicial agency or official.
CHRs investigative power

Section 18, Article XIII, of the 1987 Constitution - empowers the Commission on
Human Rights to "investigate, on its own or on complaint by any party, all forms of
human rights violations involving civil and political rights"

Application to the case

what are sought to be demolished are the stalls, sari sari sotres and carinderias as
well as temporary shanties, erected by private respondents on a land which is
planned to be developed into a "People's Park".
the land adjoins the North EDSA of Quezon City which is a busy national highway.
The order for the demolition of the stalls, sari-sari stores and carinderia of the private
respondents do not fall within the compartment of "human rights violations involving
civil and political rights" intended by the Constitution.

CHR Contempt powers

constitutionally authorized to "adopt its operational guidelines and rules of

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procedure, and cite for contempt for violations thereof in accordance with the Rules
of Court."
CHR acted within its authority in providing in its revised rules, its power "to cite or
hold any person in direct or indirect contempt, and to impose the appropriate
penalties in accordance with the procedure and sanctions provided for in the Rules of
Court."
That power to cite for contempt should apply only to violations of its adopted
operational guidelines and rules of procedure essential to carry out its investigatorial
powers.
power to cite for contempt could be exercised against persons who refuse to
cooperate with the said body, or who unduly withhold relevant information, or who
decline to honor summons, and the like, in pursuing its investigative work.

CHR cannot issue an order to desist

not investigatorial in character but prescinds from an adjudicative power that it does
not possess.
The constitutional provision directing the CHR to "provide for preventive measures
and legal aid services to the underprivileged whose human rights have been violated
or need protection" may not be construed to confer jurisdiction on the Commission to
issue a restraining order or writ of
"preventive measures and legal aid services" mentioned in the Constitution refer to
extrajudicial and judicial remedies which the CHR may seek from proper courts on
behalf of the victims of human rights violations.
CHR has no jurisdiction to issue the writ
o may only be issued "by the judge of any court in which the action is pending
Commission does have legal standing to indorse, for appropriate action, its findings
and recommendations to any appropriate agency of government.

There was also a long discussion Re: Human Rights


Human Rights
basic rights which inhere in man by virtue of his humanity
same in all parts of the world,
include civil rights,
o such as the right to life, liberty, and property; freedom of speech, of the press,
of religion, academic freedom, and the rights of the accused to due process of
law;
political rights,
o such as the right to elect public officials, to be elected to public office, and to
form political associations and engage in politics;
social rights,
o such as the right to an education, employment, and social services.
entitlement that inhere in the individual person from the sheer fact of his humanity.
not granted by the State but can only be recognized and protected by it.
Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
o International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and
o International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights,
part of his natural birth, right, innate and inalienable.

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Civil Rights

belong to every citizen of the state or country, or, in wider sense, to all its
inhabitants, and are not connected with the organization or administration of the
government.
rights of property, marriage, equal protection of the laws, freedom of contract, etc
rights appertaining to a person by virtue of his citizenship in a state or community.
rights capable of being enforced or redressed in a civil action.
guarantees against involuntary servitude, religious persecution, unreasonable
searches and seizures, and imprisonment for debt.

Political Rights

right to participate, directly or indirectly, in the establishment or administration of


government,
right of suffrage,
right to hold public office,
right of petition and,
rights appurtenant to citizenship vis-a-vis the management of government.

2. SORIANO V. PINEDA CA- GR SP NO 31546 aug 10 1994 JOBEN


This is all I have so far with the digest. Gonna try to get the actual case tomorrow through
dads office
Facts:
Louie Soriao was a high school student in the sub province of Dinalungan, Aurora (S.Y. 1993
to 1994). Due to his reputation of talking back to school authority during the past years, he
was refused readmission to complete his fourth and final year of high school through a
verbal notice not to readmit.
Soriao questioned the notice, averring that he was deprived of a hearing on the matter and
thus the verbal notice was a denial of his right to due process. The administration ignored
the students plea to reconsider its decision to deny him readmission claiming, it was their
prerogative. Seeking further remedies to no avail, Soriao filed a petition for certiorari to the
CA.
Issue: Whether or not the petitioner was denied his right to education.
Ruling: YES. The Court of Appeals ordered Pineda, Head Teacher of the Juan C. Angara
Memorial High School to allow Soriao to enroll and study after he was meted out a
disciplinary action without due process. The Court of Appeals invoked the 1987 Constitution
and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Article XIV, Sections 1 and 2 and Article II,
Sections 13 and 17 of the 1987 Constitution provide:

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Article XIV, Section 1: The State shall protect and promote the right of all citizens to quality
education at all levels, and shall take appropriate steps to make such education accessible
to all.
Section 2: The State shall:
(1)
Establish, maintain, and support a complete, adequate, and integrated system of
education relevant to the needs of the people and society;
(2)
Establish and maintain, a system of free public education in the elementary and high
school levels. Without limiting the natural right of parents to rear their children, elementary
education is compulsory for all children of school age;
(3)
Establish and maintain a system of scholarship grants, student loan programs,
subsidies, and other incentives which shall be available to deserving students in both public
and private schools, especially to the under-privileged;
(4)
Encourage non-formal, informal, and indigenous learning system, as well as selfstudy programs particularly those that respond to community needs; and
(5)
Provide adult citizens, the disabled, and out-of-school youth with training in civics,
vocational efficiency, and other skills.
Article II, Section 13: The State recognizes the vital role of the youth in nation-building and
shall promote and protect their physical, moral, spiritual, intellectual, and social well-being.
It shall inculcate in the youth patriotism and nationalism, and encourage their involvement
in public and civic affairs.
Section 17: The State shall give priority to education, science and technology, arts, culture,
and sports to foster patriotism and nationalism, accelerate social progress, and promote
total human liberation and development.
Also since it is the Constitution which granted petitioner the right of education, he may only
deprived of such right with due process of law as stated in Art. III, Sec. 1 of the 1987
Constitution, No person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of
law, nor shall any person be denied equal protection of the laws.

3. OPOSA V. FACTORNA 224 SCRA 792 1993 - ALEX


Facts: The principal plaintiffs are minors duly represented and joined by their parents. They
are joined by Philippine Ecological Network Inc. Plaintiffs are instituting this taxpayers class
suit representing their generation as well as generations yet unborn for the sake of the
Virgin tropical rainforests. They hope to cancel all existing timber license agreements in the
country and cease and desist from approving the same in the future. They aver that in order
to maintain a balanced and healthful ecology, the country must maintain a ration of 54% of
forest cover. Without it, the resulting environmental tragedies will include water shortage,
salinization of water table, massive erosion, global warming, drought spellsetc. Plaintiffs
make these claims on their constitutional right to a balanced and healthful ecology and on
the premise that the timber license agreements (TLA) are contrary to public policy, violative
of their rights to self-preservation, and to conserve and promote the nations cultural
heritage and resources.
Issues: Is the complaint presented judicially actionable or does it raise political questions?
Held: It is actionable. The Court finds enough cause of action to show a violation of the
claimed rights. They may thus be granted the reliefs prayed for. What is involved here is the
enforcement of a right vis--vis policies already formulated and expressed in legislation.

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Their personality to sue in behalf of the succeeding generations can only be based on the
concept of intergenerational responsibility insofar as the right to a balanced and healthful
ecology is concerned. This right carries with it the correlative duty to refrain from impairing
the environment. It is the DENRs duty to protect and advance said right. What is considered
here is the rhythm and harmony of nature, indispensably including the judicious
disposition, utilization, management, renewal and conservation of the countrys forest,
mineral, land, waters, fisheries, wildlife, off-shore areas and other natural resources to the
end that their exploration, development and utilization be equitably accessible to the
present and future generations. Even the non-impairment clause for the effectivity of TLAs
must yield to the police power of the state.
4. BALDOZA V. DIMAANO 71 SCRA 152 1976 - CARA
Facts:
Municipal Secretary of Taal, Batangas, charges Municipal Judge Dimaano with abuse of
authority in refusing to allow employees of the Municipal Mayor to examine the criminal
docket records of the Municipal Court to secure data in connection with their contemplated
report on peace and order conditions of the municipality. Respondent answered that there
has never been an intention to refuse access to official court records but that the same is
always subject to reasonable regulation as to who, when, where and how they may be
inspected. He further asserted that a court has the power to prevent an improper use or
inspection of its records and furnishing copies may be refuse when the motivation is not
serious and legitimate interest, out of whim or fancy or mere curiosity or to gratify private
site or promote public scandal. In his answer, respondent observed; Restrictions are imposed
by the Court for fear of an abuse in the exercise of the right. There has been recent
tampering of padlocks of the door of the Court and with this, to allow an indiscriminate and
unlimited exercise of the right to free access, might do more harm than good. Request of
such a magnitude cannot b immediately granted without adequate deliberation and
advisement. Authority should first be secured from the Supreme Court Case was referred to
Judge Riodique for investigation and report. At the preliminary hearing, Taal Mayor Corazon
Caniza filed a motion to dismiss the complaint to preserve harmony and cooperation among
officers. This motion was denied by Investigating Judge but he recommended the
exoneration of respondent. Investigating Judges report avers that complainant was aware of
the motion to dismiss and he was in conformity with it. Communications between
complainant and respondent reveal that respondent allowed the complainant to open and
view the docket books of the respondent under certain conditions and under his control and
supervision. Under the conditions, the Court found that the respondent has not committed
any abuse of authority
Issue: WON respondent acted arbitrarily in the premises when he allowed the complainant to
open and view the docket books of respondent
Held:
No. The respondent allowed the complainant to open and view the docket books of
respondent under certain conditions and under his control and supervision. It has not been
shown that the rules and condition imposed by the respondent were unreasonable. The
access to public records is predicated on the right of the people to acquire information on
public concern. The New Constitution now expressly recognizes that the people are entitled
to information on matters of public concern and thus are expressly granted access to official
records, as well as documents of official acts, or transactions, or decisions, subject to such
limitations imposed by law.
5. DAVID V. PRES. GLORIA MACAPAGAL ARROYO GR NO. 171396 2006 ZEP
case is Malabo. focused on executive powers, not HR.

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Facts:
7 consolidated cases alleging that President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo committed
grave abuse of discretion in issuing Presidential Proclamation No. 1017 (PP 1017) and
General Order No. 5 (G.O. No. 5),
PP 1017 - declared a state of national emergency
o saying that the Communist insurgents are in a systematic conspiracy to bring
down the government with Magdalo Group and Gen. Lim and Marine
Commander Ariel Querubin (clear and present danger); suppress terrorism
and lawless violence

warrantless arrests and take-over of facilities may be done


o During dispersal of the rallyists along EDSA, police arrested (without warrant)
petitioner Randolf S. David, a professor at the University of the Philippines and
newspaper columnist.
Also arrested was his companion, Ronald Llamas, president of party-list
Akbayan
o At around 12:20 in the early morning of February 25, 2006, operatives of the
Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) of the PNP, on the basis of
PP 1017 and G.O. No. 5, raided the Daily Tribune offices in Manila. The raiding
team confiscated news stories by reporters, documents, pictures, and mockups of the Saturday issue
Issue: WON the implementation of PP 1017 is unconstitutional.

PP 1017 is CONSTITUTIONAL as far as the calling out of the military to suppress


lawless violence.
PP 1017 is UNCONSTITUTIONAL when it comes to promulgating Decrees.
o Only the 2 Howuses of Congress can legislate laws
Warrantless arrests and seizures conducted without proof that they are part of
rebellion, lawless violence, and takeover is UNCONSTITUTIONAL
o It violates the constitutional guarantees of freedom of the press, of speech
and of assembly

Ratio Decidendi:
Generally, Congress is the repository of emergency powers. However, knowing that
during grave emergencies. However, the Constitution allows Congress to grant
emergency powers to the President, subject to certain conditions
o There must be a war or other emergency.
o The delegation must be for a limited period only
o The delegation must be subject to such restrictions as the Congress may
prescribe.
o The emergency powers must be exercised to carry out a national policy
declared by Congress
Assailed PP 1017 is unconstitutional insofar as it grants President Arroyo the authority
to promulgate decrees.
o Legislative power is peculiarly within the province of the Legislature. Sec. 1,
Art. VI categorically states that the legislative power shall be vested in the
Congress of the Philippines which shall consist of a Senate and a House of
Representatives. To be sure, neither Martial Law nor a state of rebellion nor a
state of emergency can justify President Arroyos exercise of legislative power
by issuing decrees

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President also cannot call the military to enact laws such as laws on family, corporate
laws, obligations and contracts, etc. Under the PP 1017, she can only call out the
military to suppress lawless violence
President is authorized to declare a state of national emergency. However, without
legislation, she has no power to take over privately-owned public utility or business
affected with public interest.
President has no absolute authority to exercise all the powers of the State under
Section 17, Article VII in the absence of an emergency powers act passed by
Congress