Supreme Court: 16 Cities Unconstitutional

The 16 illegal cities are now known as municipalities.

Voting 7-5, Supreme Court en banc nullify 16 cityhood laws. The Supreme Court says, the laws converting  16 municipalities into cities are unconstitutional because Congress did not follow the criteria established in the Local Government Code.

The sixteen cities declared as illegal are:

  1. Baybay in Leyte;
  2. Bogo in Cebu;
  3. Catbalogan in Samar;
  4. Tandag in Surigao del Sur;
  5. Borongan in Eastern Samar;
  6. Tayabas in Quezon province;
  7. Lamitan in Basilan;
  8. Tabuk in Kalinga Apayao;
  9. Bayugan in Agusan del Sur;
  10. Batac in Ilocos Norte;
  11. Mati in Davao Oriental;
  12. Guihulngan in Negros Oriental;
  13. Cabadbaran in Agusan del Norte;
  14. Carcar in Cebu;
  15. El Salvador in Misamis Oriental; and
  16. Naga in Cebu.

Why did these municipalities were converted into cities when these did not follow the criteria established in the Local Government Code? Did our lawmakers unaware of the criteria for cityhood? It’s impossible but with what happened, I feel that the congressmen who conpired with the illegal conversion had some business on it. Vested interest? Or just a desire of making people feel the “city life”?

Before the conversion, these municipalities got a small slice of Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA) but enjoyed fat IRA shares when converted into cities.

For example, Bogo town, got only about 60 million Internal Revenue Allotment but when converted into city, it ballooned onto 180 million. Naga (Cebu) as city got 186 million from 66 million IRA before conversion. Carcar’s 75 million, rose to over P200 million when it became a city.

A friend,  reacting to the news, emailed me, from rags to riches; from riches to rags. I beg to disagree because those towns that once became cities are financially well-off too.

There is politics in conversion of towns into cities, group of towns into province. That politics put the town folks not only to shame but more on the hassles of changes that are not for good.

What will happen to 16 city mayors? How do city councilors feel now when they don’t have right anymore to call themselves city council?

On the lighter side, anther friend who come from one the 16 listed rants about the calendars he will distribute as token of his business. It bears the XXXXXX City as address of his business. How would he explain that his city is now a history?

9 thoughts on “Supreme Court: 16 Cities Unconstitutional

  1. This is so depressing. I hailed from Guihulngan, Negros Oriental. That’s my roots.

    They should be thinking that it’s Christmas… Not a good news for those affected.

    Have they foreseen how many people will have this nightmare? The Jobs? the dreams? everything!

  2. wow 3 in Cebu!!! Have this been published in the newspaper? not many might know this yet!!!!

    Yes, Iggy. This has been a talk of the town.

  3. This is a country where everything can be turned upside down in the name of politics.

    These political fairies are capable of such powerful magic!

    Imagine making city disappear from the face of the earth! Along with all that taxpayers’ money…

    Batang Buotan says: Too sad, indeed!

  4. i didn’t even know that el salvador in misamis oriental is now a city. it’s near cagayan de oro, my hometown. we used to go there often, and i don’t think it is fit to be called a city yet.

    Batang Buotan says: SC is right in nullifying these cities. It seems our lawmakers are lifting the status of sleepy towns to cities for obvious reasons – to get more slice of IRA.

  5. finally read this on sunstar last sunday….what i don’t get is that why won’t this “towns” just follow what the SC says since its supposed to be the rules..and the “rushed” transformation to cities is also quite fishy, nganu magpa-ugat paman jud…tskx3

    Batang Buotan says:
    No one wants to lose millions, these 16 cities had doubled their IRA but after this High Court decision, they will get a smaller slice. Thus, we hear them appealing..

  6. Pingback: Global Voices Online » Philippines: When a City is Not a City

  7. i agree with you. i’m a cebuano and i could attest that even before naga, carcar and bogo became cities, they are financially well-off so, whether they’re downgraded (for now), there’s not a big difference at all. and with the extraordinarily-booming economy of the entire cebu province, i believe they would be re-instated soon enough as it would be much easier for these three towns to meet the cityhood requirements.

  8. En banc justices especially the presiding justice failed to get the proper picture of the case. I believe the law creating the 16 cities is a work of legislation coming from Congress. With the separation of powers clause from the judiciary, legislative and executive I believe the judiciary as represented by the en banc committee should return it to Congress and request further explanation why these 16 municipalities became cities inspite of the lacking requirement. Without the questionable law the people of these respective municipalities had voted yes for their municipalities to become cities. Therefore, nobody can question that because that is the voice and sentiment of the majority. Vox populi, vox dei”.

  9. Mabuhay city na uli ung 16 cities as of december 15, 2009 supreme court voting…mabuhay tayong lahat….6-4 in favor to 16 new cities…merry xmas to all

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