Macasiano vs Diokno GR 97764 (August 10, 1992)

211 SCRA 464

G.R. No. 97764

August 10, 1992

Facts:

Respondent Municipality passed Ordinance No. 86 which authorized the closure of J.Gabriel, G.G. Cruz, Bayanihan, Lt. Garcia Extension and Opena Streets and the establishment of a flea market thereon. This was passed pursuant to MMC Ordinance No.2 and was approved by the Metropolitan Manila Authority on July 20, 1990.

On August 8, 1990, respondent municipality and Palanyag entered into a contract agreement whereby the latter shall operate, maintain & manage the flea markets and/or vending areas in the aforementioned streets with the obligation to remit dues to the treasury of the municipal government of Parañaque.

On September 13, 1990 Brig. Gen. Macasiano ordered the destruction and confiscation of stalls along G.G. Cruz & Gabriel Street in Baclaran. He also wrote a letter to Palanyag ordering the destruction of the flea market.

Hence, respondent filed a joint petition praying for preliminary injunction. The trial court upheld the assailed Ordinance and enjoined petitioner from enforcing his letter-order against Palanyag.

 

Issues:

WON an ordinance/resolution issued by the municipal council of Parañaque authorizing the lease & use of public streets/thoroughfares as sites for the flea market is valid.

Held:

No.

J. Gabriel, G.G. Cruz, Bayanihan, Lt. Garcia Extension and Opena Streets are local roads used for public service and are therefore considered public properties of respondent municipality. Properties of the local government devoted to public service are deemed public and are under the absolute control of Congress. Hence, local governments have no authority to control/regulate the use of public properties unless specific authority is vested upon them by Congress.

Sec. 10, Chapter II of the LGC should be read and interpreted in accordance with basic principles already established by law.

The closure should be for the sole purpose of withdrawing the road or other public property from public use when circumstances show that such property is no longer intended/necessary for public use/service. Once withdrawn, the property then becomes patrimonial property of the LGU concerned and only then can said LGU use the property as an object of an ordinary contract. Roads and streets available to the public and ordinarily used for vehicular traffic are still considered public property devoted to public use. The LGU has no power to use it for another purpose or to dispose of or lease it to private persons.

Also, the disputed ordinance cannot be validly implemented because it can’t be considered approved by the Metropolitan Manila Authority due to non-compliance with the conditions it imposed for the approval of said ordinance.

The powers of an LGU are not absolute, but subject to the limitations laid down by the Constitution and laws such as the Civil Code. Every LGU has the sworn obligation to enact measures that will enhance the public health, safety & convenience, maintain peace & order and promiote the general prosperity of the inhanbitants pf the local units.

As in the Dacanay case, the general public have the right to demand the demolition of the illegally constructed stalls in public roads & streets. The officials of the respondent municipality have the corresponding duty arising from public office to clear the city streets and restore them to their specific public purpose.

The ordinance is void and illegal for lack of basis in authority in laws applicable during its time.

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