The Commission on Human Rights (Filipino: Komisyon sa Karapatang Pantao) (CHR) is an independent constitutional office created under the 1987 Constitution of the Philippines, with the primary function of investigating all forms of human rights violations involving civil and political rights in the Philippines.
The Commission is composed of a Chairperson and four members. Commissioners hold a term of office of seven years without reappointment. The Philippine Constitution requires that a majority of the Commission’s members must be lawyers. As a National Human Rights Institution, the Commission enjoys Status A accreditation by the International Coordinating Committee of National Institutions for the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights. 
After the ratification of the 1987 Philippine Constitution on 2 February 1987, which provides for the establishment of a Commission on Human Rights, President Corazon Aquino, signed Executive Order No. 163 on May 5, 1987, creating the Commission on Human Rights and abolished the Presidential Committee on Human Rights.  The Commission was created as an independent office mandated to investigate complaints of human rights violations, promote the protection of, respect for and the enhancements of the people's human rights including civil and political rights.
On 24 July 2017 during his State of the Nation Address (SONA), Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte said that the commission was "better abolished." The CHR responded in a statement that only a change to the 1987 Constitution could possibly abolish it.
On the evening of 12 September 2017, the House of Representatives of the Philippines voted 119-32 to give the CHR a budget of only ₱1,000 for the entire year of 2018, which, if made law, would effectively abolish the commission. The commission had reportedly asked Congress for a budget of ₱623,380,000, and it condemned the vote. As of 13 September 2017[update], the budget had not been finalized and was still subject to further amendment before approval by the Senate of the Philippines and by the President. If the Senate rejects the proposed CHR budget, such action will trigger a bicameral committee made of members of both houses to resolve the dispute.
The Commission derives its mandates from the Constitution, relevant domestic laws, and the eight core International Human Rights Instruments to which the Philippines is a State Party, as well as other United Nations Human Rights Conventions newly enforced.
Under Section 18, Article XIII of the Philippine Constitution, the Commission's sole duty is to protect the civil and political rights of citizens in the Philippines.
Based on the Philippine Constitution, the Commission has a broad mandate, which can be categorized into three major functional areas:
The Supreme Court of the Philippines, in Cariño v. Commission on Human Rights, 204 SCRA 483 (1991), declared that the Commission did not possess the power of adjudication, and emphasized that its functions were primarily investigatory.
The Commission on Human Rights have the following powers and functions:
The chairperson and commissioners of the commission have fixed seven-year terms, with Gascon serving as the commission's chairperson until May 5, 2022.
Qualifications for CHR chairperson are as follows: 
|Commission||Name||Took office||Left office|
|1st||Mary Concepcion Bautista||1987||1992|
|Sedfrey A. Ordoñez||1992||1995|
|Aurora P. Navarette-Reciña||1996||2002|
|Purificacion Quisumbing||2002||May 2008|
|4th||Leila de Lima||May 2008||June 30, 2010|
|Etta Rosales||September 1, 2010||May 5, 2015|
|5th||Chito Gascon||June 18, 2015||Incumbent|
In a Press briefing on July 27, 2017, Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella claimed that the CHR Chairperson and its commissioners "serve at the pleasure of the president" and that they may be replaced at the President's pleasure.  This claim was based on the Executive Order No. 163-A that amended the Section 2, Sub-Paragraph (c of Executive Order No.163, stating that "The Chairman and Members of the Commission on Human Rights shall beappointed by the President. Their tenure in office shall be at the pleasure of the President." 
However, the said executive order was questioned in the Supreme Court in the case: Bautista v. Salonga, G.R. No. 86439 on April 13, 1989; leading to the declaration of the said executive order as unconstitutional. Taking a quote from the said Supreme Court ruling, "Indeed, the Court finds it extremely difficult to conceptualize how an office conceived and created by the Constitution to be independent as the Commission on Human Rights-and vested with the delicate and vital functions of investigating violations of human rights, pinpointing responsibility and recommending sanctions as well as remedial measures therefor, can truly function with independence and effectiveness, when the tenure in office of its Chairman and Members is made dependent on the pleasure of the President. Executive Order No. 163-A, being antithetical to the constitutional mandate of independence for the Commission on Human Rights has to be declared unconstitutional." 
Under the Article IX of the 1987 Constitution, three constitutional commissions were established namely: the Commission on Elections (COMELEC), the Civil Service Commission (CSC), and the Commission on Audit (COA). The Commission on Human Rights (CHR), on the other hand, was created under the Article XIII, Section 17 of the 1987 constitution and the Administrative Code of 1987. 
In a Resolution of the Supreme Court contained in G.R. No. 155336, it ruled that the CHR is a .."constitutional body enjoying limited fiscal autonomy..."
“Iyong CHR, iyong opisina dito, you are better abolished, I will not allow my men to go there to be investigated,” he said. “Remember this, human rights commission, you address your requests through me because the armed forces is under me and the police are under me, kaya kapag kinwestiyon mo sila for investigation, dumaan muna sa akin (If you question them for investigation, you better go through me).”