Judge Santos v. CA
Herein petitioner is a retired Judge of the MeTC of Quezon City receiving his retirement gratuity under the law for his entire years in the government service; and five years thereafter has been regularly receiving a monthly pension. On 2 December 1993, petitioner re-entered the government service. He was appointed Director III of the Traffic Operation Center of the MMA. On 30 August 1996, the MMDA issued a Memorandum to petitioner informing him that in view of his “voluntary option to be separated from the service” his services would automatically cease effective at the close of office hours on 15 September 1996, and that he would be entitled to “separation benefits equivalent to one and one-fourth (1¼) monthly salary for every year of service as provided under Section 11 of the MMDA Law.”
Petitioner assails the decision of 19 August 1999 of the Court of Appealsin CA-G.R. SP No. 48301, which held that petitioner’s separation pay under Section 11 of R.A. No. 7924 should be limited to the number of years of his service in the Metropolitan Manila Authority (MMA) only, excluding his years of service as judge of the Metropolitan Trial Court (MeTC) of Quezon City for which he has already been given retirement gratuity and pension.
Whether or not, in the computation of petitioner’s separation pay, his years in service in the Judiciary should be excluded and that his separation pay
The Supreme Court affirmed the assailed decision of the Court of Appeals and the Civil Service Commission that in the computation of petitioner’s separation pay, his years in service in the Judiciary should be excluded and that his separation pay whould be solely confined to his services in the MMA.
The retirement benefits which petitioner had received or has been receiving under R.A. No. 910, as amended, do not constitute double compensation. He could continue receiving the same even if after his retirement he had been receiving salary from the defunct MMA as Director III thereof. This is but just because said retirement benefits are rewards for his services as MeTC Judge, while his salary was his compensation for his services as Director III of the MMA.
However, to credit his years of service in the Judiciary in the computation of his separation pay under R.A. No. 7924 notwithstanding the fact that he had received or has been receiving the retirement benefits under R.A. No. 910, as amended, would be to countenance double compensation for exactly the same services, i.e., his services as MeTC Judge. Such would run counter to the policy of this Court against double compensation for exactly the same services. More important, it would be in violation of the first paragraph of Section 8 of Article IX-B of the Constitution, which proscribes additional, double, or indirect compensation.