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Bar Exam Question:

A law was passed dividing the Philippines into three regions (Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao), each constituting an independent state except on matters of foreign relations, national defense and national taxation, which are vested in the Central government. Is the law valid? Explain.

SUGGESTED ANSWER:
The law dividing the Philippines into three regions, each constituting an independent state and vesting in a central government matters of foreign relations, national defense, and national taxation, is unconstitutional

First, it violates Article I, which guarantees the integrity of the national territory of the Philippines because it divided the Philippines into three states.

Second, it violates Section 1, Article II of the Constitution, which provides for the establishment of democratic and republic States by replacing it with three States organized as a confederation. 

Third, it violates Section 22, Article II of the Constitution, which, while recognizing and promoting the rights of indigenous cultural communities, provides for national unity and development. 

Fourth, it violates Section 15, Article X of the Constitution, which, provides for autonomous regions in Muslim Mindanao and in the Cordilleras within the framework of national sovereignty as well as territorial integrity of the Republic of the Philippines. 

Fifth, it violates the sovereignty of the Republic of the Philippines.

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