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EN BANC ||G.R. No. L-25326&7 || May 29, 1970 || TEEHANKEE, J.

Topic: Abolition of Share Tenancy


2 petitions for review from the decision of the Court of Agrarian Relations dismissing the petitioners
actions as share tenants for the enforcement of the right to redeem agricultural lands under Sec. 12 of the
Agricultural Land Reform Code
o Policarpio Hidalgo respondent] sold a 22,876 sqm parcel of land with 2 other parcels for P4,000
o Igmidio Hidalgo and Martina Rosales- tenant- allege that the parcel worked on by them is worth
o Now, they seek by way of redemption the execution of a deed of sale for he same amount [1,500]
in their favour
o Same Policarpio Hidalgo respondent] sold a 7,638sqm parcel for P750
o Hilario Aguila and Adela Hidalgo are tenants of the land
o They seek by way of redemption the exectution of a deed of sale for the same price in their
Petitioners contention:
o Petitioner- tenants have been share tenants of the lands for several years
o They claim that No 90-day notice of intention to sell the lands for the exercise of the right of pre
emption from section 11 of the Agricultural Land Reform Code.
o Also, the deeds of sale registered lacked the affidavit required in Sec. 13 of the same
o Petitioners filed for redemption on time
The Agrarian Court dismissed the petitions stating that the right og redemption under Sec. 12 is not
available tot he share tenants- only leasehold tenants notwithstanding the fact that there was no notice
and no affidavit executed.
o The law says agricultural lessee pertaining to leasehold tenants and nobody else. The congress
was aware of the existence of thare tenancy. So if they wanted this right to be granted to share
tenants, it would have stated so.


W/N the right of redemption granted by Sec 12 of RA 3844 is applicable to share tenants.


YES. Decisions appealed from REVERSED. Redemption GRANTED. Case 1 remanded to determine reasonable price.


1. The very essence of Agricultural Land Reform Code is the abolition of agricultural share tenancy which is
contrary to public policy. Therefore, the agrarian court erred when it said that the systems of agricultural
tenancy recognized in this jurisdiction are share tenancy and leasehold tenancy even after the enactment
of the Land Reform Code.
The existence of share tenancy is transititory, so share tenants can still keeps the land and there would be
a presumption of a leasehold relationship.

2. The agrarian courts decision refers to the contractual relationship between the tenant and the landowner.
But! The Land Reform Code forges by operation of law a vinculum juris for a leasehold tenant or
temporarily a share tenant.

Hence, they too have security of tenure of the tenant and the tenants right to continue in possession of
the land he works despite the expiration of the contract or the sale or transfer of the land to third persons,
and the farmers pre-emptive right to buy the land he cultivates as well as the right to redeem the land if
sold to a third person without his knowledge.

3. The Agrarian Court was wrong to say that the right of pre emtion and redemption are only for agricultural
lesses only cause it doest state others; The Code did not mention tenants, whether leaseholds or share
tenants, because it outlaws share tenancy and envisions the agricultural leasehold system as its
replacement, and the agrarian courts literal construction would wreak havoc on and defeat the
proclaimed and announced legislative intent and policy of the State of establishing owner-cultivatorship
for the farmers who invariable were all share tenants before the enactment of the Code and whom the
Code would now uplift to the status of the lessees.

4. Where the true intent of the law is clear, such intent or spirit must prevail over the letter thereof.
Whatever is within the spirit of a statue is within the statute, since adherence to the letter would result in
absurdity, injustice, and contradictions and would defeat the plain and vital purpose of the statute:

the Code's intent, policy and objective to give both agricultural lessees and farmers who transitionally
continue to be share tenants notwithstanding the Code's enactment, the same priority and preferential
rights over the lands under their cultivation, in the event of acquisition of the lands, by expropriation or
voluntary sale, for distribution or resale that may be initiated by the Land Authority or the National Land
Reform Council, are clearly and expressly stated.

5. It would result in absurdity and injustice if a share tenant is denied pre emption and redemption on his
own resources. The code speaks of assisting them financially so they can exercise such rightsand
preferential rightsof ownership. The congress could not have wanted o deprive the share tenant who can
exercise the option without the wovernemtns help.

6. Basbas v Entena is not applicable, as there, the tenant-redemptioner was shown by the evidence to have
no funds and had merely applied for them to the Land Authority which was not yet operating in the
locality and hence, the Court held that no part of the Code indicates or even hints that the 2-year
redemption period will not commence to run until the tenant obtains financing from the Land Bank, or
stops the tenant from securing redemption funds from some other source. In the present case, the sole
legal issue is the right of redemption being available to the redemption of the share tenants. They also
have their own funds.

7. Land owner is not prejudiced by the recognition of the right of redemption. Neither are the vendees.

8. The historical background for the enactment of the Codes provisions on pre-emption and redemption
further strengthens the Courts opinion.
9. Hence, the code clearly intended to afford the farmers' who transitionally continued to be share tenants
after its enactment but who inexorably would be agricultural lessees by virtue of the Code's proclaimed
abolition of tenancy, the same priority and preferential right as those other share tenants, who upon the
enactment of the Code or soon thereafter were earlier converted by fortuitous circumstance into
agricultural lessees, to acquire the lands under their cultivation in the event of their voluntary sale by the
owner or of their acquisition, by expropriation or otherwise, by the Land Authority.