CASE 2016-0050: THE DIOCESE OF BACOLOD, REPRESENTED BY THE MOST REV. BISHOP VICENTE M. NAVARRA AND THE BISHOP HIMSELF IN HIS PERSONAL CAPACITY,  v. COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS AND THE ELECTION OFFICER OF BACOLOD CITY, ATTY. MAVIL V. MAJARUCON,  (G.R. 205728, 05 JULY 2016, LEONEN, J.)


DISPOSITIVE:

 

“WHEREFORE, the Motion for Reconsideration is DENIED with FINALITY.

 

 SO ORDERED.”

 

 SUBJECTS/DOCTRINES/DIGEST:

 

 This Court’s Decision discussed that the tarpaulin consists of satire of political parties that “primarily advocates a stand on a social issue; only secondarily-even almost incidentally-will cause the election or nonelection of a candidate.”34 It is not election propaganda as its messages are different from the usual declarative messages of candidates. The tarpaulin is an expression with political consequences, and “[t]his court’s construction of the guarantee of freedom of expression has always been wary of censorship or subsequent punishment that entails evaluation of the speaker’s viewpoint or the content of one’s speech.”35

 

We recognize that there can be a type of speech by private citizens amounting to election paraphernalia that can be validly regulated.36 J However, this is not the situation in this case. The twin tarpaulins consist of  a social advocacy, and the regulation, if applied in this case, fails the reasonability test.

 

Lastly, the regulation is content-based. The Decision discussed that “[t]he form of expression is just as important as the information conveyed that it forms part of the expression[,]”38 and size does matter. 39”

 

TO READ THE DECISION, JUST CLICK/DOWNLOAD THE FILE BELOW.

 

SCD-2016-0050-DIOCESE OF BACOLOD

 

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