Thursday, November 28, 2013

Magna Carta case at the Supreme Court


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In an unprecedented turn of event, the Philippine Public Health Association (PPHA) filed a class suit for Prohibition and Certiorari on Magna Carta before the Supreme Court against the Department of Health (DOH), Department of Budget and Management (DBM) and Civil Service Commission (CSC). The legal battle was commenced last May 31, 2013.

The case arose from the issuance of DBM-DOH Joint Circular No. 1 s. 2012 and CSC-DBM Joint Circular s. 2012 Said circulars were issued as of November 29, 2012 and September 9, 2012, respectively.

DBM-DOH Joint Circular No. 1 s. 2012 is otherwise known as “Rules and Regulations on the Grant of Compensation-Related Magna Carta Benefits to Public Health Workers (PHWs)” while CSC-DBM Joint Circular s. 2012 is known as the “Rules and Regulations on the Grant of Step Increment/s Due to Meritorious Performance and Step Increment Due to Length of Service”.
Specifically, PPHA challenges the implementation of DBM-DOH Joint Circular No. 1 s. 2012 as it allegedly deprives the health workers of Hazard Pay and other Magna carta benefits and the implementation of one provision of CSC-DBM Joint Circular s. 2012 which allegedly deprives officials and employees including PHWs to be granted both Longevity Pay and Increment Pay due to Length of Service.

PPHA believes that these administrative circulars were issued in excess of jurisdictions and with grave abuse of discretion as they did not pass the substantive procedural requirement of publication and consultation. It thus seek for the setting aside of these rules, categorical ruling on Longevity Pay and Increment Pay as two distinct benefits and prays that the benefits be included in the annual budget proposal to Congress.

There is no ruling yet on the prayer for writ of preliminary injunction in the petition.

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