Ponente: PADILLA, J.
Republic Act No. 6683 provided benefits for early retirement and voluntary separation from the government service as well as for involuntary separation due to reorganization. Deemed qualified to avail of its benefits are those enumerated in Sec. 2 of the Act. Petitioner Lydia Chua believing that she is qualified to avail of the benefits of the program, filed an application with respondent National Irrigation Administration (NIA) which, however, denied the same; instead, she was offered separation benefits equivalent to one half (1/2) month basic pay for every year of service commencing from 1980, or almost fifteen (15) years in four (4) successive governmental projects. A recourse by petitioner to the Civil Service Commission yielded negative results, citing that her position is co-terminous with the NIA project which is contractual in nature and thus excluded by the enumerations under Sec.3.1 of Joint DBM-CSC Circular Letter No. 89-1, i.e. casual, emergency, temporary or regular employment. Petitioner appealed to the Supreme Court by way of a special civil action for certiorari.
Whether or not the petitioner is entitled to the benefits granted under Republic Act No. 6683.
YES. Petition was granted.
Petitioner was established to be a co-terminous employee, a non-career civil servant, like casual and emergency employees. The Supreme Court sees no solid reason why the latter are extended benefits under the Early Retirement Law but the former are not. It will be noted that Rep. Act No. 6683 expressly extends its benefits for early retirement to regular, temporary, casual and emergency employees. But specifically excluded from the benefits are uniformed personnel of the AFP including those of the PC-INP. It can be argued that, expressio unius est exclusio alterius but the applicable maxim in this case is the doctrine of necessary implication which holds that “what is implied in a statute is as much a part thereof as that which is expressed”.
[T]he Court believes, and so holds, that the denial by the respondents NIA and CSC of petitioner’s application for early retirement benefits under R.A. No. 6683 is unreasonable, unjustified, and oppressive, as petitioner had filed an application for voluntary retirement within a reasonable period and she is entitled to the benefits of said law. In the interest of substantial justice, her application must be granted; after all she served the government not only for two (2) years — the minimum requirement under the law but for almost fifteen (15) years in four (4) successive governmental projects.