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1. What kind of legal system exists in the Philippines?

The Philippine legal system is a mixture of three


prevailing legal systems; Roman law, Anglo-American law, and
Mohammedan or Islamic law. This particular legal system is the
result of the immigration of Muslim Malays to the Philippines in
the fourteenth century and the subsequent colonization of the
country by Spain and the United States.

The Philippine Civil Code is basically Roman in origin. Modern


laws and concepts of persons and family relations and the like are
also Roman in origin. The citizens of the Philippines and the rest
of the world are greatly affected by the Roman legal system since it
is able to shed light on the solutions for complex problems which
confront the modern civilized world.

Mohammedan or Islamic law is observed in some southern


parts of the Philippines are is only applied if they are not in conflict
with the general laws of the land.

2. What are the three great branches of government?

The three branches of the Philippine government are as follows;

The legislative department has the authority to make laws and


to alter and repeal them. It is the province of the legislature to
prescribe general rules for the government of society. It
determines the legislative policy and its promulgation as a defined
binding rule of conduct. The Constitution vests legislative power in
the two Houses of Congress.

The executive power is the authority which has the power to


administer the laws, which means carrying them into practical
operation and enforcing their due observance. Under the
Constitution, the executive power is vested in the President of the
Philippines.

The judicial department has the power to apply the laws to


contests or disputes concerning legally recognized rights or duties
between the state and private persons, or between individual
litigants in cases properly brought before the judicial tribunals.
The Constitution vests judicial power in the Supreme Court and in
lower courts established by law.

2a. Is any branch supreme over the other? What rules or


principles govern their interrelationship?

1
No, there is no branch of government supreme over the
other. The three branches of government have an
interdependent relationship.

The principle of separation of powers governs the


relationship of the branches of government. This principle
prevents them from invading each others domain of power. The
underlying reason for the promulgation of this principle is the
assumption that abuse of authority would inevitably result from
the three branches of government. Each branch of the
government has distinct functions vested in them by the
Constitution and such cannot be surrendered nor delegated by
each branch to another department or agency.

A system of checks and balances also brings equilibrium


to the three branches. The Constitution fixes certain limits on
the independence of each department and in order for these
limits to be observed, the Constitution gives each department
certain powers by which it may definitely restrain the other
from exceeding their authority.