Cityhood of 16 Municipalities

trenas7Recognized by the Chair, Rep. Jerry P. Treñas (Iloilo City) took up the case of the 16 municipalities who aspired to be cities. He pointed out that while the Supreme Court, in the case of the League of Cities of the Philippines vs. COMELEC, ruled in 2008 that the laws that created the 16 cities were unconstitutional because said cities did not meet the income requirement, the SC however reversed itself in 2009. Rep. Treñas pointed out that the government should preserve the rule of law and maintain the stability of the judicial and legislative systems. He enjoined the Supreme Court to uphold the constitution and to respect its own principle that a final judgment cannot be altered or overturned even by the court itself.

Rep. Sergio F. Apostol (Leyte) inquired about the share of IRA of the 16 municipalities to which Treñas revealed that the said 16 new “cities” have yet to receive their IRAs. Rep. Jose Carlos L. Cari (Leyte) mentioned that the SC decision of 2009 took into consideration the intent of the lawmakers who created RA 9009 which increased to P100 million the income requirement under the Local Government Code for a municipality to be considered a component city.

For his part Rep. Ben P. Evardone (Eastern Samar) commented that the creation of the 16 additional new cities will not hamper the delivery of services in the existing cities. He urged his colleagues to respect the laws enacted by Congress and to wait for the final judgment of the Supreme Court on the case. Rep. Tobias Reynald M. Tiangco (Navotas) remarked that the main point of his speech is not whether the creation of the 16 cities will affect the services of the existing cities but whether the new cities satisfied the requirements of the Local Government Code. However, Rep. Treñas clarified that the issue is whether the Supreme Court can disregard its own final decision.

Source: the newspaper for Patriot -Statesman- Dec 2010