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1. Divinagracia v. Sto. Tomas, G.R. No.

110954, 31 May 1995

FACTS: Filomena Mancita was appointed Municipal Development Coordinator (MDC) of Pili,
Camarines Sur, in 1980 in a permanent capacity. When the Local Government Code (LGC) took
effect, the office was renamed Municipal Planning Development Coordinator (MPDC). The
Sangguinang Bayan of Pili approved a Resolution creating and organizing the Office of MPDC.
Mancita held over the position until 1985.

Mayor Anastacio Prila notified Mancita that her services were being terminated on the ground that
the Office of MDC was abolished as a result of the reorganization of the local government of Pili.
Respondent Priscilla Nacario, the then Municipal Budget Officer (MBO), was appointed MPDC.
While Petitioner Alexis San Luis, Cashier II of the DENR, was appointed MBO of Pili,

Mancita appealed her termination to the Merit Systems and Protection Board (MSPB) which ruled
that Mancita’s termination was illegal as Mancita was in fact qualified for the MPDC since the powers
and duties of the two positions were essentially the same. Mayor Divinagracia was ordered to
reinstate Mancita and to pay backwages. Appeal by Mayor Divinagracia was dismissed.

Mayor Divinagracia informed Nacario that she was being terminated in compliance with the MSPB
decision. Nacario filed before the RTC a Petition for Declaratory Relief and Prohibition with
Preliminary Injunction praying for the annulment of the CSC Resolution. RTC issued a TRO. Mancita
then filed a motion to dismiss but this was denied. Then she filed a special civil action for certiorari
under Rule 65 before the SC, which was granted.

Pending the SC decision, Nacario asked the CSC about her status a s a permanent employee of the
Municipality of Pili after she had accepted the position of MPDC.

HELD: Nacario’s movement was one of lateral transfer. A transfer is a movement from one position
to another which is of equivalent rank, level, salary, without break in service. Promotion is the
advancement from one position to another with an increase in duties and responsibilities as
authorized by law, and is usually accompanied by an increase in salary. A transfer that results in
promotion or demotion, advancement or reduction, or a transfer that aims to lure the
employee from the permanent position cannot be done without the employee’s consent. This
would constitute removal from office. Indeed, no permanent transfer can take place unless
the officer or employee is first removed from the position held, and then appointed to another

The rule that unconsented transfers amount to removal is not without an exception. There are
transfers which do not amount to removal. Such transfers can be effected without need for charges
being proffered, without trial or hearing, and without the consent of the employee. The clue to such
transfers may be found in the nature of the appointment. Where the appointment does not indicate
a specific station, an employee may be transferred or assigned provided the transfer affects no
substantial change in title, rank or salary. Such rule does not proscribe a transfer carried out under
specific statute that empowers the head of an agency to periodically reassign the employees and
officers in order to improve the service of the agency. Neither does illegality attach to the transfer or
assignment of an officer pending the determination of an administrative charge against him or to the
transfer of an employee from his assigned station to the main office, effected in good faith and in the
interest of service.

In this case, the uncontested transfer of Nacario from the MBO to the MPDC was arbitrary for it
amounted to removal without cause, hence, anathema to security of tenure. When she was extended
a permanent appointment and assumed the position, she acquired a legal, not merely an equitable,
right to the position. Such right to security of tenure is protected not only by statute but also by the
Constitution and cannot be taken away from her either by removal, transfer or by revocation of
appointment, except for cause and after prior notice.
Consequently, Nacario could not be said to have vacated her former position when she accepted
the position of MPDC since she could not be deemed to have been separated from or to have
terminated her official relations with her former position. The principle of estoppel cannot bar her
from returning to her former position because of the fact that she reluctantly and hesitantly accepted
the second office. The element of involuntariness tainted her lateral transfer and invalidated her
separation from her former position.

Furthermore, the appointment of San Luis as MBO carried with it a condition: “provided that the
separation of the former incumbent is in order.” Since the separation of Nacario was not in order,
San Luis should relinquish his position in favor of the former, without prejudice to his right to be
reinstated to his former position as Cashier II of DENR.

2. Palma-Fernandez v. de la Paz, 160 SCRA 751

FACTS: Petitioner Dr. Nenita Palma-Fernandez was Chief of Clinics at the Hospital ng Bagong
Lipunan (now East Avenue Medical Center). As Chief of Clinics, petitioner exercised direct control
and supervision over all heads of departments in the Medical Center.

The new organizational structure of the Center retitled the position of Chief of Clinics to Assistant
Director for Professional Services. To implement this new set-up, respondent Dr. Adriano de la Paz,
as Medical Center Chief, issued Hospital Order No. 30, designating petitioner as Assistant Director
of Professional Services but still retaining direct control and supervision over all heads of
departments. Thereafter, Executive Order No. 119 known as the "Reorganization Act of the Ministry
of Health" was promulgated. Respondent De la Paz, as Medical Center Chief, designated
respondent Dr. Sosepatro Aguila, as Assistant Director for Professional Services and transferred Dr.
Palma-Fernandez to the Research Office by virtue of Hospital Order No. 22.

Upon receipt of the Order, petitioner filed a letter-protest with respondent Secretary of Health. Failing
to secure any action on her protest within a month's time, petitioner filed this Petition for Quo
Warranto claiming entitlement to the position of Assistant Director for Professional Services alleged
to be unlawfully held by private respondent, Dr. Aguila.

Issues: W/N respondent De la Paz has power or authority to issue the two Hospital Orders? NO.

Held: Since the East Avenue Medical Center is one of the National Health Facilities attached to the
Department of Health, the power to appoint and remove subordinate officers and employees, like
petitioner, is vested in the Secretary of Health, not the Medical Center Chief. The latter's function is
confined to recommendation. Even a transfer requires an appointment, which is beyond the authority
of respondent Medical Center Chief to extend. Besides, the transfer was without petitioner's consent,
was tantamount to removal without valid cause, and as such is invalid and without any legal effect.
A removal without cause is violative of the Constitutional guarantee that "no officer or employee of
the civil service shall be removed or suspended except for cause provided by law" (Article IX, B,
Section 2(3),1987 Constitution)

3. Quisumbing v. Judge Gumban, 193 SCRA 520

FACTS: On or before 1979, private respondent Esther B. Yap was appointed District Supervisor of
the Bureau of Public Schools and assigned to the District of Glan, South Cotabato. On 1987,then
Secretary Lourdes Quisumbing issued a Memorandum Order, directing Regional Director Teofilo E.
Gomez to reassign or transfer Esther B. Yap to another district. The latter in turn issued a
Memorandum Order to the principals and headteachers of different public schools at Glan informing
them of his assumption of office. However, private respondent Esther B. Yap defied the orders of
her superiors and she continued to perform the functions of public school district supervisor of Glan.

HELD: It is to be underscored that the appointment of private respondent Yap is simply that of a
District Supervisor of the Bureau of Public Schools which does not indicate a specific station. As
such, she could be assigned to any station and she is not entitled to stay permanently at any specific

4. Chato v. Natividad, G.R. No. 113843, 2 June 1995

FACTS: Pursuant to the issuance of EO 132 (Approving the Streamlining of the Bureau of Internal
Revenue) by President FVR, petitioner Liwayway Vinzons-Chato (LVC) issued Revenue Admin.
Order No. 5-93, which redefined the areas of jurisdiction and renumbered the regional district offices
(RDO’s), as well as abolished the previous classification of RDO’s and henceforth treated all as the
same class. Following this, LVC, citing exigencies of the revenue service, directed 90 RD officers to
report to new assignments in the redesignated and renumbered RDO’s nationwide.

Private respondent Blas was among those affected by such reassignment. He was ordered to report
to RD 14 in Tuguegarao, Cagayan, while petitioner Alcantara was ordered to report to Blas’ former
post in San Fernando, Pampanga, now known as RD 21.

Blas questioned the above reassignment, arguing that it constituted demotion since he was
transferred from the larger RD in San Fernando, Pampanga (formerly a Class A RDO) to the smaller
one in Tuguegarao (formerly a Class C RDO).

Thus, Blas filed a complaint for injunctive relief with the RTC contesting the same. He invoked Sec.
2 of EO 132, which stated that: “redeployment of officials and other personnel on the basis of the
streamlining embodied in this Executive Order shall not result in…the diminution of rank and

The RTC granted the TRO and writ of preliminary injunction; thus, petitioners are now before the SC
to contest such Order upon the following grounds:
1. Blas did not show that he had a right which was violated as a result of the reassignment.
2. The transfer was made pursuant to EO 132, and this being so, it should not be considered
disciplinary in nature (as would require Blas’ consent); it was done in the interest of public service.
3. Blas did not have any vested right to his station in San Fernando, Pampanga since he was only
designated to the post and not appointed thereto. Neither did he show any right to be exempted
from the reorganization.
4. There was no demotion since there was no reduction in duties, responsibilities, status, rank, or
salary; the old RDO classes were already abolished so pantay-pantay kayo lahat anubeh?
5. Blas failed to exhaust administrative remedies since it did not appeal to the CSC first.
6. The issue is moot and academic since petitioner Alcantara took his post as RD officer before the
action below was filed.

ISSUE: W/N the reassignment in this case constituted demotion – NO.

HELD: There was no demotion in this case. Blas’ transfer to the Tuguegarao RD, did not really entail
any diminution in rank, salary, status and responsibilities. His claim that the Tuguegarao revenue
district is smaller than that in San Fernando, Pampanga has no basis because, as already noted,
the classification of RDO’s into Class A-1, A, B, C and D has been abolished and all RDO’s are now
considered to be of the same class.

Blas’ transfer is part of a nationwide reshuffle or reassignment of revenue district officers designed
to improve revenue collection. More specifically the objective of the reassignment, as stated in
Revenue Administrative Order No. 5-93, is to strengthen the decentralization of the Bureau's set-up
for the purpose of maximizing tax assessments and revenue collections, intensifying enforcement of
revenue laws and regulations and bringing the revenue service closer to the taxpaying public.

It could be that private respondent is being transferred to a revenue district which he claims has less
revenue capacity than San Fernando, Pampanga, precisely to improve the capacity of the new
assignment. His new assignment should therefore be considered by him a challenge to his
leadership as revenue district officer rather than a demotion or a penalty.
Blas failed to show patent illegality in the action of LVC constituting violation of his right to security
of tenure. To sustain his contention that his transfer constitutes a demotion simply because the new
assignment is not to his liking would be to subordinate government projects, along with the great
resources and efforts they entail, to the individual preferences and opinions of civil service
employees. Such contention would negate the principle that a public office is a public trust and that
it is not the private preserve of any person.

5. Teotico v. Agda, 197 SCRA 675

January 2, 1984 – Cesar Lanuza, administrator of the Fiber Development Authority (FIDA) –
Department of Agriculture (DA), appointed Agda as Chief Fiber Development Officer. Lanuza issued
Special Order No. 29 designating Agda as “Acting Regional Administrator for FIDA Regions I and

November 13, 1987 – Lanuza issued Special Order No. 219, temporarily re-assigning Agda to the
main office of the Administrator, and a certain Epitacio Lanuza, Jr. was designated officer-in-charge
of FIDA Region 1.

December 9, 1987 – Agda prepared to file a petition to stop the implementation of Special Order No.
219 with the CSC, Secretary of DA, and COA on the following grounds:
It is devoid of legal basis as it does not preserve and maintain a status quo before the controversy
It is against the interest of public service because Epitacio Lanuza has been cited in two cases
involving dishonesty, abuse of privileges and character unbecoming of a government official
His re-assignment was improper, inappropriate and devoid of moral justification
Designating Epitacio to such position amounts to nepotism because he and Cesar Lanuza are

April 4 1988 – Teotico, Acting Administrator of FIDA Region 1, placed Agda in preventive suspension
and charged him with conduct prejudicial to the interest of public service and insubordination. Teotico
also alleged that Agda never showed up in the Office of the Administrator.

Agda’s petition was granted. Consequently, Teotico filed an appeal accusing the judge of grave
abuse of discretion for granting Agda’s petition and ordering the latter’s reinstatement.

ISSUE: W/N Agda’s re-assignment was valid

HELD: YES. Agda was appointed as ACTING Regional Administrator, but he was not appointed to
a specific station. Enunciating the rule in Cuadra vs. Cordova, temporary appointments or those in
“acting capacity” are terminable at the pleasure of the appointing authority.

Unfortunately, Agda was not able to avail of his remedy under Section 6 of Rule VI of the Civil Service
Rules on Personnel Actions and Policies. Section 6 provides that: Except when the exigencies of
the service require, an official or employee of the government may not be ordered detailed or
reassigned during the three-month period before any local or national election, and if he believes
that the order for his detail or reassignment is due to harassment, coercion, intimidation, or other
personal reasons, he may appeal the order to the Commission. Until this is proven, however, the
order is presumed to be in the interest of the service and notwithstanding the appeal, the decision to
detail or reassign him shall be executory, but the Commission may order deferment of suspension
of the detail or reassignment ex parte."

PD 807 (Civil Service Decree) also allows preventive suspension for officers or employees who have
been charged with “dishonesty, oppression or grave misconduct, or neglect in the performance of
duty, or if there are reasons to believe that the respondent is guilty of charged which would warrant
his removal from the service”.
6. Causing v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 199131, 9 September 2014

The only personnel movements prohibited by COMELEC Resolution No. 8737 are transfer and
detail. Transfer is defined in the Resolution as “any personnel movement from one government
agency to another or from one department, division, geographical unit or subdivision of a
government agency to another with or without the issuance of an appointment”; while detail as
defined in the Administrative Code of 1987 is the movement of an employee from one agency to
another without the issuance of an appointment.

FACTS: Elsie Causing assumed office as the Municipal Civil Registrar of Barotac Nuevo, Iloilo.
Mayor Biron issued Memorandum No. 12, Series of 2010 (Office Order No. 12), commanding for the
detailing of Causing at the Office of the Municipal Mayor. Causing filed the complaint claiming that
issuance made by Mayor Biron ordering her detail to the Office of the Municipal Mayor, being made
within the election period and without prior authority from the COMELEC, was illegal and it violated
of Section 1, Paragraph A, No. 1, in connection with Section 6 (B) of COMELEC Resolution No.
8737. Mayor Biron countered that the purpose of transferring the office of Causing was to closely
supervise the performance of her functions after complaints regarding her negative behavior in
dealing with her co-employees and with the public transacting business in her office. The Provincial
Election Supervisor recommended the dismissal of the complaint-affidavit for lack of probable cause.
COMELEC En Banc affirmed the findings and recommendation.

ISSUE: Is the relocation of Causing by Mayor Biron during the election period from her office as the
Municipal Civil Registrar to the Office of the Mayor constitute a prohibited act under the Omnibus
Election Code and the relevant Resolution of the COMELEC?

HELD: No. Reassignment was not prohibited by the Omnibus Election Code there was no probable
cause to criminally charge Mayor Biron with the violation of the Omnibus Election Code.

The movement involving Causing did not equate to either a transfer or a detail within the
contemplation of the law if Mayor Biron only physically transferred her office area from its old location
to the Office of the Mayor. Causing is not stripped of her functions as Municipal Civil Registrar. She
was merely required to physically report to the Mayor’s Office and perform her functions as Municipal
Civil Registrar therein. Definitely, she is still the MCR, albeit doing her work physically outside of her
usual work station. She is also not deprived of her supervisory function over the staff as she
continues to review their work and signs documents they prepared. While she may encounter
difficulty in performing her duties as a supervisor as she is not physically near her staff, that by itself,
however, does not mean that she has lost supervision over them. Moreover, Causing’s too-literal
understanding of transfer should not hold sway because the provisions involved here were criminal
in nature. Mayor Biron was sought to be charged with an election offense punishable under Section
264 of the Omnibus Election Code. It is a basic rule of statutory construction that penal statutes are
to be liberally construed in favor of the accused. Every reasonable doubt must then be resolved in
favor of the accused.

7. Cuevas v. Bacal, G.R. No. 139382, 6 December 2000

FACTS: Josefina G. Bacal passed the Career Executive Service Examinations in 1989. On July 28,
1994, she was conferred CES eligibility and appointed Regional Director of the Public Attorney’s
Office. On January 5, 1995, she was appointed by then President Ramos to the rank of CESO III.
On November 5, 1997, she was designated by the Secretary of Justice as Acting Chief Public
Attorney. On February 5, 1998, her appointment was confirmed by President Ramos so that, on
February 20, 1998, she took her oath and assumed office.
On July 1, 1998, Carina J. Demaisip was appointed “chief public defender” by President Estrada.
Apparently because the position was held by Bacal, another appointment paper was issued by the
President on July 6, 1998 designating Demaisip as “chief public defender (formerly chief public
BACAL, effective July 1, 1998. On the other hand, Bacal was appointed “Regional Director, Public
Defender’s Office” by the President.
On July 7, 1998, Demaisip took her oath of office. President Estrada then issued a memorandum,
dated July 10, 1998, to the personnel of the “Public Defender’s Office” announcing the appointment
of Demaisip as “CHIEF PUBLIC DEFENDER.” Secretary of Justice was notified of the appointments
of Demaisip and Bacal on July 15, 1998.
On July 17, 1998, Bacal filed a petition for quo warranto questioning her replacement as Chief Public
Attorney. The petition, which was filed directly with this Court, was dismissed without prejudice to
its refiling in the Court of Appeals. Accordingly, Bacal brought her case in the CA which ruled in her
favor finding her to be lawfully entitled to the Office of Chief Public Attorney. Hence, this petition.

ISSUE: Whether Bacal is entitled to the contested position

HELD: No. What should be emphasized in this case is that respondent Josefina G. Bacal is a
CESO III and that the position of Regional Director of the PAO, to which she was transferred,
corresponds to her CES Rank Level III and Salary Grade 28. This was her position before her
“appointment” on February 5, 1998 to the position of Chief Public Attorney of the PAO, which requires
a CES Rank Level I for appointment thereto. Respondent Bacal therefore has no ground to
complain. She may have been considered for promotion to Rank I to make her appointment as Chief
Public Attorney permanent. The fact, however, is that this did not materialize as petitioner Carina J.
Demaisip was appointed in her place. If respondent was paid a salary equivalent to Salary Grade
30 while she was holding that office, it was only because, under the law, if a CESO is assigned to a
position with a higher salary grade than that corresponding to his/her rank, he/she will be allowed
the salary of the CES position. As Bacal does not have the rank appropriate for the position of Chief
Public Attorney, her appointment to that position cannot be considered permanent, and she can
claim no security of tenure in respect of that position.
Appointments, assignments, reassignments, and transfers in the Career Executive Service are
based on rank. Thus, security of tenure in the career executive service is thus acquired with respect
to rank and not to position. The guarantee of security of tenure to members of the CES does not
extend to the particular positions to which they may be appointed a concept which is applicable only
to first and second-level employees in the civil service but to the rank to which they are appointed
by the President. Accordingly, respondent did not acquire security of tenure by the mere fact that
she was appointed to the higher position of Chief Public Attorney since she was not subsequently
appointed to the rank of CESO I based on her performance in that position as required by the rules
of the CES Board.
Within the Career Executive Service, personnel can be shifted from one office or position to
another without violation of their right to security of tenure because their status and salaries are
based on their ranks and not on their jobs. Mobility and flexibility in the assignment of personnel,
the better to cope with the exigencies of public service, is thus the distinguishing feature of the Career
Executive Service. Petitioners are, therefore, right in arguing that respondent, “as a CESO, can be
reassigned from one CES position to another and from one department, bureau or office to another.
Further, respondent, as a CESO, can even be assigned or made to occupy a CES position with a
lower salary grade. In the instant case, respondent, who holds a CES Rank III, was correctly and
properly appointed by the appointing authority to the position of Regional Director, a position which
has a corresponding CES Rank Level III.”
Indeed, even in the other branches of the civil service, the rule is that, unless an employee is
appointed to a particular office or station, he can claim no security of tenure in respect of any office.
This rule has been applied to such appointments as Director III or Director IV or Attorney IV or V in
the Civil Service Commission since the appointments are not to specified offices but to particular
ranks; Election Registrars; Election Officers, also in the Commission on Elections; and Revenue
District Officers in the Bureau of Internal Revenue.
Moreover, as Bacal herself does not have the requisite qualification for the position of Chief Public
Attorney, she cannot raise the lack of qualification of petitioner. As held in Carillo v. Court of Appeals,
“in a quo warranto proceeding the person suing must show that he has a clear right to the office
allegedly held unlawfully by another. Absent that right, the lack of qualification or eligibility of the
supposed usurper is immaterial

8. Gloria v. De Guzman, G.R. No. 116183, 6 October 1995

FACTS: Private respondents were employees of the Philippine Air Force College of Aeronautics
(PAFCA) by virtue of temporary appointments because at the time of their appointment, they lacked
appropriate civil service eligibilities or otherwise failed to meet the necessary qualification standards
for their respective positions. One of them was Rosario Cerillo who was appointed as Board
Secretary II of PAFCA. However she was relieved from the position by reason of loss of confidence.
Subsequently, she was designated as "Coordinator for Extension Services". Said appointments
expired when the PAFCA was dissolved and replaced by the PSCA (Philippine State College of
Aeronautics)Aggrieved, private respondents filed a Petition for Mandamus and Reinstatement for
reinstatement before the RTC of Pasay Petitioners filed an answer upon the ground that mandamus
will not lie to compel reinstatement because there appointment prayed for is discretionary on the part
of the appointing power (Board of Trustees). Respondent Judge de Guzman rendered a decision
ordering the reinstatement of Cerillo as coordinator for extension services. Thus, Sec. Gloria filed a
petition for certiorari under Rule 65 to the SC

ISSUE: Whether or not private respondent Rosario V. Cerillo is entitled to reinstatement

HELD: The judgment of respondent Judge de Guzman which orders the reinstatement of Ms.
Rosario V. Cerillo to the position of "Coordinator for Extension Services" is patently improper
because it finds no support as to facts and the law. The fact is that private respondent's assignment
to the said position was a mere designation. Not being a permanent appointment, the designation to
the position cannot be the subject of a case for reinstatement.

The fact that private respondent Cerillo passed the requisite Civil Service Examination after the
termination of her temporary appointment is no reason to compel petitioners to reappoint her.
Acquisition of civil service eligibility is not the sole factor for reappointment. Still to be considered by
the appointing authority are: performance, degree of education, work experience, training, seniority,
and, more importantly, as in this case, whether or not the applicant enjoys the confidence and trust
of the appointing power, considering that the position of Board Secretary II, by its nature, is primarily
confidential. Reappointment to such position is an act which is discretionary on the part of the
appointing power hence it cannot be the subject of an application for a writ of mandamus.

Reinstatement is technically issuance of a new appointment which is essentially discretionary, to be

performed by the officer in which it is vested according to his best lights, the only condition being
that the appointee should possess the qualifications required by law. Such exercise of the
discretionary power of appointment cannot be controlled, not even by the Court as long as it is
exercised properly by the appointing authority. Thus the order of the lower court for the reinstatement
of the private respondent amounts to an undue interference by the court in the exercise of a
discretionary power vested in the PSCA Board of Trustees.

To the question as to the legality of the termination of the services of the petitioners, the only answer
is there was no termination to speak of. Termination presupposes an overt act committed by a
superior officer. There was none whatsoever in the case at bar. At most, PSCA Chairman of the
Board of Trustees Col. Julian gave notice to the petitioners of the expiration of their respective
contracts, Petitioners appointment or employment simply expired either by its very own terms, or
because it may not exceed one year, but most importantly because the PAFCA was dissolved and
replaced by the PSCA