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ADMINISTRATIVE LAW (ADMIN)

60. VILLAFLOR V CA as petitioner. CFI dismissed the complaint. The heirs of


[G.R. No. 95694. October 9, 1997] petitioner appealed to the Court of Appeals which, however,
FACTS: rendered judgment against them. Hence this petition.
In 1940, Cirilo Piencenaves, in a Deed of Absolute Sale, sold
to Vicente Villafor, a parcel of agricultural land (planted with ISSUE: W/N THE FINDINGS OF THE BUREAU OF LANDS
Abaca) containing an area of 50 hectares. The deed states that ARE BINDING TO THE COURTS.
the land was sold to Villaflor in 1937, but no formal document
was then executed, and since then until the present time, HELD: YES.
Villaflor has been in possession and occupation of the same.
Before the sale of said property, Piencenaves inherited said Underlying the rulings of the trial and appellate courts is the
property from his parents and was in adverse possession of doctrine of primary jurisdiction; i.e., courts cannot and will not
such without interruption for more than 50 years. On the same resolve a controversy involving a question which is within the
day, Claudio Otero, in a Deed of Absolute Sale sold to Villaflor jurisdiction of an administrative tribunal, especially where the
a parcel of agricultural land (planted with corn), containing an question demands the exercise of sound administrative
area of 24 hectares. HermogenesPatete, in a Deed of Absolute discretion requiring the special knowledge, experience and
Sale sold to Villaflor, a parcel of agricultural land (planted with services of the administrative tribunal to determine technical
abaca and corn), containing an area of 20 has., more or less. and intricate matters of fact.
Both deed state the same details or circumstances as that of
Piencenaves’. In 1940, Fermin Bocobo, in a Deed of Absolute The rationale underlying the doctrine of primary jurisdiction
Sale sold to Villaflor, a parcel of agricultural land (planted with finds application in this case, since the questions on the
abaca), containing an area of 18 hectares, more or less. identity of the land in dispute and the factual qualification of
private respondent as an awardee of a sales application
In 1946, Villaflor leased to Nasipit Lumber Co., Inc. a parcel of require a technical determination by the Bureau of Lands as
land, containing an area of 2 has, together with all the the administrative agency with the expertise to determine such
improvements existing thereon, for a period of 5 years at a matters. Because these issues preclude prior judicial
rental of P200.00 per annum to cover the annual rental of determination, it behooves the courts to stand aside even
house and building sites for 33 houses or buildings.In 1948, in when they apparently have statutory power to proceed, in
an “Agreement to Sell” Villaflor conveyed to Nasipit Lumber, 2 recognition of the primary jurisdiction of the administrative
parcels of land.From said day, the parties agreed that Nasipit agency.
Lumber shall continue to occupy the property not anymore in
concept of lessee but as prospective owners. One thrust of the multiplication of administrative agencies is
that the interpretation of contracts and the determination of
On 7 December 1948, Villaflor and Nasipit Lumber executed private rights thereunder is no longer a uniquely judicial
an “Agreement,” confirming an Agreement to Sell, but with function, exercisable only by our regular courts
reference to the Sales Application filed with the Bureau of
Land. Sales Application of Villaflor were rejected for having The primary jurisdiction of the director of lands and the minister
leased the property to another even before he had acquired of natural resources over the issues regarding the identity of
transmissible rights thereto. In August 1950, Villaflor executed the disputed land and the qualification of an awardee of a sales
a document, denominated as a “Deed of Relinquishment of patent is established by Sections 3 and 4 of Commonwealth
Rights,” in favor on Nasipit Lumber, in consideration of the Act No. 141, also known as the Public Land Act
amount of P5,000 that was to be reimbursed to the former
representing part of the purchase price of the land, the value of Reliance by the trial and the appellate courts on the factual
the improvements Villaflor introduced thereon, and the findings of the Director of Lands and the Minister of Natural
expenses incurred in the publication of the Notice of Sale; in Resources is not misplaced. By reason of the special
light of his difficulty to develop the same as Villaflor has moved knowledge and expertise of said administrative agencies over
to Manila. Pursuant thereto Nasipit Lumber filed a Sales matters falling under their jurisdiction, they are in a better
Application over the 2 parcels of land. “Order of Award” was position to pass judgment thereon; thus, their findings of fact in
then issued in favor of Nasipit Lumber. In 1973, Villafor wrote a that regard are generally accorded great respect, if not finality,
letter to Nasipit Lumber, reminding the latter of their verbal [29] by the courts. [30] The findings of fact of an administrative
agreement in 1955; but the new set of corporate officers agency must be respected as long as they are supported by
refused to recognize Villaflor’s claim. substantial evidence, even if such evidence might not be
overwhelming or even preponderant.
In a formal protest dated 31 January 1974 which Villaflor filed
with the Bureau of Lands, heprotested the Sales Application of
Nasipit Lumber, claiming that the company has not paid him 61. COMMISSIONER V NAVARRO
P5,000.00 as provided in the Deed of Relinquishment of Rights G.R. No. L-33146 May 31, 1977
dated 16 August 1950. The Director of Lands found that the FACTS:
payment P5,000.00 in the Deed and the consideration in the The Commissioner of Customs sought to nullify and set aside
Agreement to Sell were duly proven, and ordered the dismissal order of respondent Judge Pedro C. Navarro 2 dated January
of Villaflor’s protest. 4, 1971, issuing a writ of preliminary injunction as prayed for by
private respondents Juanito S. Flores and Asiatic Incorporated
In 1978, Villaflor filed a complaint in the trial court for the importers of 1,350 cartons of fresh fruits, restraining
“Declaration of Nullity of Contract (Deed of Relinquishment of petitioners from proceeding with the auction sale of such
Rights), Recovery of Possession (of two parcels of land subject perishable goods. Classified as non-essential consumer
of the contract), and Damages”. In 1983, he died. The trial commodities, they were banned by Central Bank Circulars
court ordered his widow, Lourdes D. Villaflor, to be substituted Nos. 289, 294 and 295 as prohibited importation or importation

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ADMINISTRATIVE LAW (ADMIN)
contrary to law and thus made subject to forfeiture proceedings (Lot Nos. 111 and 122) and kept on harassing, molesting and
by petitioner Collector of Customs pursuant to the relevant disturbing her peaceful possession as well as the enjoyment of
sections of the Tariff and Customs Code. 3 In a detailed and the fruits thereof, to her great damage and prejudice.
specific fashion, petitioners pointed out how violative was the
assumption of jurisdiction by respondent Judge over an In their answer, petitioners insisted that they are better entitled
incident of a pending seizure and forfeiture proceeding which, to the possession of the lots in dispute, having been allegedly
as held in a number of decisions, was a matter falling within in long possession thereof, with their houses thereon. On the
the exclusive competence of the customs authorities. other hand, the award of said lots to respondent is
unauthorized, not only because she has no possession thereof
ISSUE: W/N THE RESPONDENT JUDGE HAS but also because she has other landholdings in the locality.
JURISDICTION OVER SEIZURE AND FORFEITURE They averred that the complaint should be dismissed for lack
PROCEEDINGS. of cause of action and for lack of jurisdiction on the part of the
DARAB over the case.
HELD: NONE.
ISSUE: W/N DARAB HAS JURISDICTION OVER THE CASE.
The question of seizure and forfeiture is for the administrative
in the first instance and then the Commissioner of Customs.
This is a field where the doctrine of primary jurisdiction
controls. Thereafter an appeal may be taken to the Court of HELD: YES.
Tax Appeals. A court of first instance is thus devoid of
competence to act on the matter. There is further judicial The Court of Appeals correctly observed that the present case
review, but only by this Court in the exercise of its certiorari for maintenance of peaceful possession with prayer for
jurisdiction. restraining order/preliminary injunction is a mere off-shoot of
the suit for cancellation of Certificates of Land Transfer (CLTs)
The latest categorical declaration of such a rule appears in the filed by herein respondent against herein petitioners before the
opinion of Justice Teehankee, speaking for the Court, in DARAB. That previous case culminated in a decision
Seneres v. Frias 34 in these words: "It is the settled law and upholding respondent's entitlement to an award of the subject
jurisprudence in this jurisdiction that the customs authorities landholdings under the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law.
acquire exclusive jurisdiction over goods sought to be imported The case at bar is for the maintenance of her peaceful
into the Philippines, for the purpose of enforcement of possession of the premises and to prevent the petitioners from
Philippine customs laws, from the moment the goods are further harassing her and disturbing her possession and
actually under their possession and control, even if no warrant enjoyment thereof. Hence, the appellate court was correct in
for seizure or detention thereof has previously been issued by holding that the present case is an incident flowing from the
the port earlier decision of the administrative agency involving the
collector of customs." same parties and relating to the same lands.

Having found therefore, that the instant case is related to and


62. CENTENO V CENTENO is a mere off-shoot of the said previous case for cancellation of
[G.R. No. 140825. October 13, 2000] CLTs which was decided in favor of herein respondent, we
FACTS: believe and so hold that the DAR continues to have jurisdiction
over the same. As aptly stated by the Court of Appeals, under
Respondent IgnaciaCenteno is the owner of 2 parcels of Section 50 of R.A. 6657 (the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform
riceland. The said parcels of land were the subject of an earlier Law of 1988), the DAR is vested with primary jurisdiction to
case filed by respondent against petitioners before the determine and adjudicate agrarian reform matters and shall
Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR), for cancellation of have the exclusive jurisdiction over all matters involving the
certificates of land transfer (CLT). In said case, it was implementation of the agrarian reform program. The rule is that
established that petitioners, through fraud and the DARAB has jurisdiction to try and decide any agrarian
misrepresentation, obtained CLTs in their names, i.e., CLT No. dispute or any incident involving the implementation of the
10186 for Lot No. 122 and CLT No. 10185 for one-half portion Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program.
of Lot No. 111 for Cipriano Centeno, and CLT No. 10184 for
the other half of Lot No. 111 for LeonidaCalonzo (sic). On
November 15, 1986, the then Minister, now Secretary, of 63. NUESA V CA
Agrarian Reform issued an order directing the recall and [G.R. No. 132048. March 6, 2002]
cancellation of petitioners' CLTs. FACTS:
On May 25, 1972, then Secretary of Agrarian Reform issued
The instant case has its roots in a complaint filed by herein an Order of Award in favor of Jose Verdillo over two (2) parcels
respondent IgnaciaCenteno with the Department of Agrarian of agricultural land, Lots 1932 and 1904 of the Buenavista
Reform and Adjudication Board (DARAB), Region III, Malolos, Estate, San Ildefonso, Bulacan, covering 14,496 and 19,808
Bulacan, for "Maintenance of Peaceful Possession with Prayer square meters, respectively, under the following conditions:
for Restraining Order/Preliminary Injunction, Ejectment and
Damages." Respondent allegedthat, despite the decision of the That within a period of six (6) months from receipt of a copy,
DAR recognizing her ownership over Lot Nos. 111 and 122, as the awardee(s) shall personally cultivate xxx or otherwise
affirmed by the Office of the President, herein petitioners develop at least one-fourth of the area xxx or occupy and
Cipriano Centeno, LeonilaCalonzo and Ramona Adriano have construct his/her house in case of residential lot and pay at
interfered with and prevented respondent from exercising acts least the first installment xxx; failure on his/her part to comply
of possession over the landholdings earlier adjudicated to her with this requirement shall be sufficient cause for cancellation

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ADMINISTRATIVE LAW (ADMIN)
of this order and for allocation xxx in favor of any qualified xxx provincial adjudicator or board of adjudicators acted
applicant; erroneously and with grave abuse of discretion in taking
cognizance of the case, then overturning the decision of the
On August 26, 1993, or after twenty-one years, private DAR Regional Director and deciding the case on the merits
respondent filed an application with the Regional Office of the without affording the petitioner opportunity to present his case.
Department of Agrarian Reform for the purchase of said lots
claiming that he had complied with the conditions set forth in In the case at bar, petitioner and private respondent had no
the Order. tenurial, leasehold, or any agrarian relations whatsoever that
could have brought this controversy between them within the
Restituto Rivera, herein petitioner, filed a letter of protest ambit of the abovecited provision. Consequently, the DARAB
against private respondent claiming that contrary to the had no jurisdiction over the controversy and should not have
manifestation of private respondent, it is petitioner who had taken cognizance of private respondents petition in the first
been in possession of the land and had been cultivating the place.
same. [3] Petitioner had filed his own application for said
parcels in opposition to that of private respondent. Note that Administrative Order No. 3, Series of 1990, governs
the distribution and titling of lots in landed estates administered
a representative of the Department of Agrarian Reform by the DAR.
Regional Office undertook an investigation to look into the
conflicting claims of the petitioner and the private respondent.
Based on said investigation, it was found that: 64. REGIONAL DIRECTOR V CA
G.R. No. 110193 January 27, 1994
In the investigation...it was undoubtedly established that Lots FACTS:
1932 (pt.) and 1904, Psd-52045, were in possession/cultivation
of tenants or other persons exclusive of Jose Verdillo...It is The private respondents, together with other Negros Oriental
crystal clear that Jose Verdillo has culpably violated the terms public school teachers, held, starting 19 September 1990 and
and conditions of the Order of Award issued in his favor for lots lasting until 21 September 1990, a mass action, or a strike
covered thereby. from their school classes, to demand the release of their
salaries by the Department of Budget.
Petitioner Nuesa, Regional Director of DAR, issued an order
cancelling the order of award issued in favor of Verdillo. A return-to-work order was promptly issued by one of the
petitioners, Regional Director Teofilo Gomez of the Department
Aggrieved by the cancellation of his award, private respondent of Education, Culture and Sports ("DECS"), with a warning that
then filed on March 20, 1994, a Petition with the Provincial if the "striking" school teachers were not to resume their
Adjudication Board, Region III, for Annulment of said Order. classes within twenty-four hours, administrative charges would
Instead of filing an Answer to the Petition, herein petitioners be filed. Since the order was not heeded, administrative
(as respondents below) filed a Motion to Dismiss the Petition complaints against the teachers concerned were thereupon
on the ground that the proper remedy was an appeal to the filed.
Secretary of the Department of Agrarian Reform from the
Order of the Regional Director, under DAR Memorandum Prior to the start of the hearings by the DECS Investigating
Circular No. 5-87, and not by a Petition with the DARAB Team, the private respondents filed with the Regional Trial
Provincial Adjudicator, hence, the aforesaid Order had become Court of Negros Oriental, Branch 42, Dumaguete City, a
final and executory. complaint for injunction, prohibition and damages with prayer
for preliminary injunction. On 26 March 1991, the court a quo
The DARAB Provincial Adjudicator, however, chose to resolve issued the writ of preliminary injunction.
the case on the merits and on October 14, 1994, promulgated
a Decision denying the petitioners Motion to Dismiss and ISSUE: WHETHER OR NOT THE TRIAL COURT HAS THE
reversing the Order of the Regional Director AUTHORITY TO ISSUE RESTRAINING ORDERS AGAINST
THE ADMINISTRATIVE PROCEEDINGS.
ISSUE: whether or not the Court of Appeals erred in
denying petitioners claim that in this case, the Board
(DARAB) acted in grave abuse of discretion tantamount to
lack or excess of its jurisdiction. HELD: NO.

HELD: YES. The issuance, however, of the restraining orders by the lower
court against further proceedings of the administrative
P.D. 946 [24] provides that matters involving the administrative complaints is inappropriate inasmuch as the authority of the
implementation of the transfer of the land to the tenant-farmer DECS Regional Director to issue the return to work
under P.D. No. 27 [25] and amendatory and related decrees, memorandum, to initiate the administrative charges, as well as
orders, instructions, rules and regulations, shall be exclusively to constitute the investigating panel, can hardly be disputed;
cognizable by the Secretary of Agrarian Reform, including: xxx
(5) issuance, recall or cancellation of certificates of land The court cases and the administrative matters being closely
transfer in cases outside the purview of P.D. No. 816. interrelated, if not interlinked, it behooves the court, in the
interest of good order and conformably with the doctrine of
The revocation by the Regional Director of DAR of the earlier primary jurisdiction, to suspend its action on the cases before it
Order of Award by the Secretary of Agriculture falls under the pending the final outcome of the administrative charges.
administrative functions of the DAR. The DARAB and its

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ADMINISTRATIVE LAW (ADMIN)
unwarranted and had been brought about by Cuaderno’s
malicious machinations.
65) Laguna CATV vs Maraan Meanwhile, the administrative case against Corpus
GR No. 139492, November 19, 2002 was dismissed by the Monetary Board.
The CFI ruled that Cuaderno is not liable for damages
FACTS but Corpus is liable for damages for having committed libel
Private respondents filed with the DOLE Regional against Cuaderno.
Office separate complaints for underpayment of wages and
non-payment of other employee benefits. Impleaded as ISSUE
respondent was their employer, Laguna CATV Network Inc. Whether or not Cuaderno maliciously caused the
The complaints were filed pursuant to Visitorial and suspension of Corpus.
Enforcement Powers of the Secretary of Labor or his duly
authorized representatives under Art. 128 of the Labor Code. RULING
The Regional Director found that the employer No. It is the Monetary Board of the Central Bank
violated the laws on payment of wages and other benefits. He which has authority to discipline its employees.
ordered the employer to correct its errors. The removal was embodied in a resolution of the
Due to failure of the employer to comply with the Monetary Board, upon apellee’s recommendation as Governor
Order, the Regional Director issued a writ of execution. Laguna of the Bank. The procedure adopted was in accordance with
CATV filed an appeal with the Court of Appeals. the provision of the bank charter that the Monetary Board shall
on the recommendation of the Governor, appoint, fix the
ISSUE: Whether or not the appeal was proper. remunerations and remove all officers and employees of the
Central Bank. Under this provision, the Board has the power to
RULING adopt or reject the recommendation. The decisive action
No. The appeal should have been filed first with the belonged to the Board, not to appellee.
Secretary of Labor.
Article 128(b) of the Labor Code provides, among
others, that “an order issued by the duly authorized 67) Madrigal vs Lecaroz
representative of the Secretary of Labor and Employment GR No. L-46218, October 23, 1990
under this article may be appealed to the latter.” Moreover, the
doctrine of exhaustion of administrative remedies provides that FACTS
courts, for reasons of law, comity and convenience, should not The public respondents abolished Joventino
entertain suits unless the available remedies have first been Madrigal’s position as a permanent construction capataz in the
resorted to and the proper authorities have been given an office of the Provincial Engineer from the annual Roads
appropriate opportunity to act and correct their alleged errors, if Bridges Fund Budget for fiscal year 1971-1972 by virtue of
any, committed in the administrative forum. Resolution No. 204. The abolition was allegedly due to the
The doctrine ensures an orderly procedure which poor financial condition of the province and it appearing that
favors a preliminary sitting process, particularly with respct to his position was not essential.
matters peculiarly within the competence of the administrative Madrigal appealed to the Civil Service Commission
agency, avoidance of interference with functions of the which declared the removal as illegal and ordered his
administrative agency by withholding judicial action until the reinstatement. However, the Provincial Board refused to
administrative process had run its course, and prevention of reinstate Madrigal.
attempts to swamp the courts by a resort to them in the first
instance. ISSUE
Whether or not the appeal by Madrigal to the CSC
was proper.
66) Corpus vs Cuaderno, Sr.
GR No. L-16969, April 30, 1966 RULING
No. The doctrine of exhaustion of administrative
FACTS remedies does not apply.
R. Marino Corpus was appointed Economist in the It is fundamental that in a case where pure questions
Department of Economic Research of the Central Bank. of law are raised, the doctrine of exhaustion of administrative
Thereafter, he received promotions in position in salary. He remedies cannot apply because issues of law cannot be
became Director of the Dept of Loand and Credit and Rural resolved with finality by the administrative officer. Appeal to the
Banks Administration. administrative officers of orders involving questions of law
However, he was found guilty on five counts of would be an exercise in futility since administrative officers
administrative cases filed against him. The Governor of the canot decide such issues with finality.
Central Bank, Miguel Cuaderno, Sr., recommended that he In the present case, the legal question is whether or
Corpus be penalized with suspension without pay. not the abolition of Madrigal’s position was in accordance with
After suspension, Corpus was informed by Cuaderno law.
that the former had been reinstated in the service with the
designation of Technical Assistant to the Governor. He was
then appointed to Special Assistant to the Governor.
Another administrative complaint was filed against
Corpus. He was again suspended.
Corpus now instituted an action for damages in the
Court of First Instance alleging that his suspension was

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ADMINISTRATIVE LAW (ADMIN)
68) Cabada vs Alunan Damages with the Regional Trial Court of Zamboanga Del Sur
GR No. 119645, August 22, 1996 which the trial court granted.
The Barrio Council of Batu, Slay, Zamboanga del Sur
FACTS prepared and submitted to the Bureau a resolution which
Mario Valdez filed a complaint for grave misconduct, attests that the 9 hectare controverted fishpond area was
arbitrary detention, and dishonesty against SPO3 Noel Cabada never occupied by the Datilles family )petitioner’s predecessor)
and SPO3 Rodolfo De Guzman with the Office of the and that it was Deypalubos who cleared the same and
Commission on Human Rights. The complaint was referred to constructed all the improvements therein. The resolution
the PNP Eighth Regional Command which, after conducting its further requests that the original grant of 175.9959 hectares to
own investigation, filed an administrative charge of grave petitioner be reduced to 50 hectares only in accordance with a
misconduct against the petitioners and instituted summary presidential decree limiting the cultivation of a fishpond to
dismissal proceedings. about 50 hectares, with the remaining area to be distributed to
The Regional Director of PNP-RECOM 8 found poor families.
petitioners guilty of grave misconduct and issued Special Order The Bureau Director issed a memorandum addressed
No. 174 which ordered their dismissal from the police service. to the Regional Director Guieb, directing an immediate formal
The decision was appealed to the Regional Arbitration investigation those issues involved in the foregoing resolution
Board 8 (RAB 8) which affirmed the decision. and the protest of Jesus Deypalubos and not touched upon in
Another appeal was filed with the Secretary of DILG the civil case.
and a petition for review with the Chairman of the
NAPOLCOM. ISSUE
The NAPOLCOM denied due course to the peititoners Whether or not the Regional Director has jurisdiction
because of lack of jurisdiction for the Decision and Resolution to investigate the subject fishpond conflict.
of the RAB had become final and executory.
Petitioners now filed a special civil action for certiorari RULING
with the Supreme Court alleging that the NAPOLCOM No.
committed grave abuse of discretion. It is a well-settled rule that for prohibition to lie against
an executive officer, the petitioner must first exhaust
ISSUE administrative remedies. This doctrine rests upon the
Whether or not this petition for certiorari is proper assumption that the administrative body, if given the chance to
correct its mistake or error, may amend its decision on a given
RULING matter.
Yes. The petition for certiorari is a remedy when there In the present case, however, there is no
is grave abuse of discretion. administrative order or act as above described, that can be
In this case, the NAPOLCOM did not have the power appealed from. The Regional Director has not rendered any
or authority to issue a decision denying due course to the decision, or made any final finding of any sort, and is in fact
appeal and petition for review filed by petitioners for lack of just about to conduct an investigation which happens to be the
jurisdiction because of Section 5, Rule III of NAPOLCOM very act sought to be prevented. Consequently, administrative
Memorandum Circular No. 91-006 and Section 23, Rule I of remedies that must be exhausted, although available, cannot
NAPOLCOM Memorandum Circular No. 91-002. In other be resorted to. There being urgency in stopping public
words, NAPOLCOM has no appellate jurisdiction over respondent Guieb’s investigation but no plain, speedy and
decisions of the Regional Director of PNP-RECOM 8 and RAB adequate remedy in the ordinary course of law, petitoner’s
8. Its appellate jurisdiction is limited to police benefits. recourse to the respondent court for reliev by way of a petition
Thus, petitioners could properly invoke the original for prohibition was proper.
jurisdiction of the SC to issue the writ of certiorari under Rule
65 of the Rules of Court and would not violate the doctrine of
exhaustion of administrative remedies. 70. NATIONAL FOOD AUTHORITY and ROMEO G. DAVID
v. CA
G.R. Nos. 115121-25
February 9, 1996
69) Datilles & Co vs Sucaldito
GR No. L-42380, June 22, 1990 FACTS:
In 1990, NFA, through then Administrator Pelayo J. Gabaldon,
FACTS conducted a public bidding to award security contracts for the
Petitioner has in its favor a fishpond lease agreement protection of its properties and facilities all over the country.
where the Republic of the Philippines, through the Secretary of Twelve security agencies were awarded one-year contracts.
Agriculure and Natural Resources agreed to lease 175 among whom were private respondents.
hectares, 99 acres and 59 centares of public land in Batu,
Siay, Zamboanga del Sur, for fishpond purposes. In August 1992, petitioner Romeo G. David became NFA
Meanwhile, the private respondents Jesus Administrator. He caused a review of all security service
Deypalubos and Daniel Cabdieza refused to obey orders of the contracts, procedures on the accreditation of private security
Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources to vacate that agencies and the bidding for security services. Pending this
portion of the area covered by FLA No. 1902 which they were review, Administrator David extended the services of private
occupying without a fishpond permit and the knowledge and respondents and the other incumbent security agencies on a
consent of petitioner. periodic basis.
Petitioner filed a complaint for injunction with writ of
possession with preliminary prohibitory injunction with

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ADMINISTRATIVE LAW (ADMIN)
Administrator David created a Prequalification, Bids and speedy and adequate remedy in the ordinary course of the law.
Awards Committee (PBAC) to undertake the prequalification of The urgency of the situation compelled private respondents to
prospective bidders, conduct the bidding, evaluate the bids go to court to stop the implementation of these negotiated
tendered and recommend to the Administrator the bids security contracts.
accepted. Notices for prequalification and bidding for security
services were published in a newspaper of national circulation.
All incumbent security contractors were required to prequalify 71. GRAVADOR VS. EUTIQUIO MAMIGO
and only those prequalified were to be allowed to participate in G.R. No. L-24989
the prebidding and bidding. July 21, 1967

Forty-one security agencies, composed of the incumbents and FACTS: The petitioner Pedro Gravador was the principal of the
new applicants, including private respondent Masada Security Sta. Catalina Elementary School in Sta. Catalina, Negros
Agency, submitted the necessary documents for Oriental on August 15, 1964 when he was advised by the then,
prequalification. Superintendent of Schools of his separation from the service
on the ground that he had reached the compulsory retirement
Meanwhile, however, two of the applicants who failed to age of 65.
prequalify, namely Lanting Security and Watchman Agency
and respondent Lasala, filed separate complaints with the A few days later the respondent Eutiquio Mamigo was
Regional Trial Court, Quezon City to restrain Administrator designated teacher-in-charge of the said elementary school.
David and the PBAC from proceeding with the public bidding.
On August 31, 1964 the petitioner wrote the Director of Public
On respondent Lasalas application, the Regional Trial Court, Schools, protesting his forced retirement on the ground that the
Branch 93, Quezon City issued on July 20, 1993 a preliminary date of his birth is not November 26, 1897 but December 11,
injunction ordering the PBAC to refrain from proceeding with 1901.
the bidding until the merits of the case shall have been heard
and resolved. On October 19, 1964 the petitioner wrote to the Division
Superintendents of Schools, reiterating his claim that he had
During the effectivity of the writ of preliminary injunction, not reached the age of 65 and enclosing some papers in
Administrator David sent to all incumbent security agencies, support thereof.
including four of herein private respondents, notices of
termination. They were thus instructed to withdraw their On April 13, 1965 he filed this suit for quo warranto,
security guards from all NFA installations. mandamus and damages in the Court of First Instance of
Negros Oriental.
On August 4, 1993, Administrator David contracted the
services of seven new security agencies starting August 16, He asked the court to adjudge him entitled to the office of
1993 on a month-to-month basis pending resolution of the principal of the Sta. Catalina Elementary School and to order
injunction against the bidding. payment to him of not only his back salaries but also damages.

Private respondents forthwith filed separate complaints with The trial court concluded that the petitioner was born on
the RTC for prohibition, mandamus and damages with a prayer December 11, 1901 accordingly granted his petition.
for the issuance of a preliminary injunction and restraining Immediate execution was ordered, as a result of which the
order. petitioner was reinstated.
These orders were challenged by NFA and David in separate
petitions before the Court of Appeals alleging grave abuse of The respondents appealed directly to this Court.
discretion by respondent judges.
ISSUE: W/N petitioner's action was prematurely brought
CA affirmed injunction to prevent awarding of new security because he had not availed of all administrative remedies.
contracts.
HELD: No.
ISSUE: Whether private respondent’s complaint is premature
and legally deficient for failing to exhaust available This argument is without merit. Suit for quo warranto to recover
administrative remedies. a public office must be brought within one year. Before filing
this case the petitioner waited for eight months for the school
HELD: No. officials to act on his protest. To require him to tarry a little
more would obviously be unfair to him since on April 13, 1965,
The principle of exhaustion of administrative remedies is not a when this case was filed, he had only four months left within
hard and fast rule. It is subject to some limitations and which to bring the case to court. There was neither manner nor
exceptions. In this case, private respondent’s contracts were form of assurance that the decision of the Director of Public
terminated in the midst of bidding preparations and their Schools would be forthcoming. The rule on exhaustion of
replacements hired barely five days after their termination. In administrative remedies does not apply where insistence on its
fact, respondent Masada, a prequalified bidder, submitted all observance would result in the nullification of the claim being
requirements and was preparing for the public bidding only to asserted.
find out that contracts had already been awarded by
negotiation. Indeed, an appeal to the NFA Board or Council of
Trustees and the Secretary of Agriculture pursuant to the
provisions of the Administrative Code of 1987 was not a plain,

6
ADMINISTRATIVE LAW (ADMIN)
72. ALMINE VS. CA
G.R. No. 80719 Thus, the respondent appellate court erred in holding that it
September 26, 1989 has no jurisdiction over the petition for review by way of
certiorari brought before it of a decision of the Minister of
FACTS: Agrarian Reform allegedly made in grave abuse of his
discretion and in holding that this is a matter within the
On December 25, 1975, petitioner filed a sworn application for competence of the Court of Agrarian Reform. The Court of
retention of her riceland or for exemption thereof from the Appeals has concurrent jurisdiction with this Court and the
Operation Land Transfer Program with the then Ministry of Regional Trial Court over petitions seeking the extraordinary
Agrarian Reform (MAR), After due hearing, Atty. Cidarminda remedy of certiorari, prohibition or mandamus.
Arresgado of the said office filed an investigation report for the
cancellation of the Certificate of Land Transfer (CLT) of private 2. The failure to appeal to the Office of the President from the
respondent who appears to be petitioner's tenant over her decision of the Minister of Agrarian Reform in this case is not a
riceland. Upon failure of the Ministry to take the necessary violation of the rule on exhaustion of administrative remedies
action, petitioner reiterated her application alleging that her as the latter is the alter ego of the President.
tenant deliberately failed and refused to deliver her
landowner's share from 1975 up to the time of the filing of the
said application and that the latter had distributed his 73. SMART COMMUNICATIONS V. NTC
landholding to his children.

Regional Director Salvador Pejo manifested his concurrence 74. U.P. BOARD OF REGENTS V. HON. JAINAL D. RASUL
with the report holding that the properties of the petitioner G.R. No. 91551 August 16, 1991
consist of 4.3589 hectares as evidenced by Transfer
Certificates of Title and hence not covered by the Operation FACTS: That on June 26, 1986, plaintiff Dr. Felipe A. Estrella,
Land Transfer Program. However, in the order dated February Jr., was appointed by the defendant Board of Regents BOR as
13, 1986, then Minister Conrado Estrella denied petitioner's Director of the Philippine General Hospital; that the defendant
application for retention. U.P. Board of Regents intended to have the plaintiff serve his
full term, as Director, since any other arrangement would
Petitioner appealed to the then Intermediate Appellate Court impede the hospital's development, not to mention the
(IAC); Private respondent filed a motion to dismiss the appeal. continuity of its service operations.
However, it was denied in an order dated May 28, 1986. A
motion for reconsideration thereof was likewise denied. The On September 16, 1987, barely two (2) weeks after assuming
Court of Appeals rendered a decision dismissing the appeal on the presidency of the University of the Philippines defendant
the ground of lack of jurisdiction. Jose V. Abueva submitted a memorandum to the Board of
Regents to reorganize the U.P. Manila including the Philippine
Petitioner's posture is that it is an error for the respondent General Hospital with a draft resolution for approval of the
appellate court to dismiss the appeal on the ground of lack of Board of Regents, recommending that certain key positions of
jurisdiction since under Section 9 of Batas Pambansa Blg. 129, UP Manila including that of plaintiff be declared vacant.
said appellate court is vested with the exclusive appellate
jurisdiction over all decisions, resolutions, or orders of quasi- On April 29, 1988, defendant Dr. Ernesto Domingo acting on
judicial agencies except those falling within the appellate instruction of defendant Dr. Jose v. Abueva, U.P. President,
jurisdiction of the Supreme Court. issued a memorandum creating the Nomination Committee for
the UP-PGH Medical Center Director; that on May 10, 1988,
ISSUE: defendant-members of the Nomination Committee thus
created, are scheduled to nominate plaintiff s replacement as
Director;
1. Whether the CA has jurisdiction? Yes
that consequently on May 2, 1988, plaintiff filed with this Court,
2. Whether the failure to appeal the order of the MAR to the his complaint for Injunction with Preliminary Injunction of
office of the president is violative of exhaustion of temporary restraining Order, seeking to enjoin defendants
administrative remedies? No Abueva, Domingo, the Nomination Committee and the ITP
Board of Regents from proceeding with the nomination of UP-
HELD: PGH medical Center Director, in order to forestall the
1. A perusal of the provision above cited reveals that consequent removal/dismissal of the plaintiff Dr. Felipe A.
questions as to whether a landowner should or should not be Estrella, Jr., incumbent PGH Director, even before the
allowed to retain his landholdings are exclusively cognizable by expiration of his term of office on April 30, 1992 without any
the Minister (now Secretary) of Agrarian Reform whose cause provided by law.
decision may be appealed to the Office of the President and
not to the Court of Agrarian Relations. These cases are thus ISSUE: W/N there was a failure to exhaust administrative
excluded from those cognizable by the then CAR, now the remedies?
Regional Trial Courts. There is no appeal from a decision of
the President. However, the said decision may be reviewed by
the courts through a special civil action for certiorari, prohibition HELD: No. We hold that this case has special circumstances
or mandamus, as the case may be under Rule 65 of the Rules that made it fall under the jurisprudentially accepted exceptions
of Court. to the rule. As the facts show, respondent Dr. Estrella was
about to be replaced by the Nomination Committee. He must
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ADMINISTRATIVE LAW (ADMIN)
have believed that airing his protest with the Board of Regents harmful and unlawful trade of clandestine operators, as well as
would only be fruitless and that unless he goes to the courts, update the standard of those carrying such business, making it
irreparable damage or injury on his part will be caused by the "imperative to provide, among other urgently needed
implementation of the proposed reorganization. measures, more expeditious methods in prescribing,
redefining, or modifying the lines and mode of operation of
Respondent Judge, based on the evidence presented, public utility motor vehicles that now or thereafter, may operate
concluded that the reorganization of PGH was done in bad in this country.
faith. Accordingly, the lower court ruled that respondent Dr.
Estrella cannot be removed from office as a result of such It is essential then both from the standpoint of the firms
defective abolition of the position to which he was appointed. engaged as well as of the riding public to ascertain whether or
Respondent Judge did not commit any reversible error much not the procedure followed in this case and very likely in others
less grave abuse of discretion. The facts as supported by of a similar nature satisfies the procedural due process
evidence established may no longer be disturbed. requirement. Thus its ripeness for adjudication becomes
apparent.

To paraphrase what was said in Edu v. Ericta where the


75. ARROW TRANSPORTATION CORPORATION VS. validity of a legislation was passed upon in a certiorari
BOARD OF TRANSPORTATION proceeding to annul and set aside a writ of preliminary
G.R. No. L-39655 injunction, to so act would be to conserve both time and effort.
March 21, 1975 Those desiring to engage in public utility business as well as
the public are both vitally concerned with the final
FACTS: Both petitioner and private respondent Sultan Rent-a- determination of the standards to be followed in the procedure
Car are domestic corporations. The former has in his favor a that must be observed. There is, to repeat, a great public
certificate of public convenience to operate a public utility bus interest in a definitive outcome of the crucial issue involved.
air-conditioned-auto-truck service from Cebu City to Mactan
International Airport and vice-versa with the use of twenty (20)
units. Private respondent on September 12, 1974 filed a 76. MARIA NATIVIDAD VDA. DE TAN V.
petition with the respondent Board for the issuance of a VETERANS BACKPAY COMMISSION
certificate of public convenience to operate a similar service on G.R. No. L-12944
the same line. Eight days later, without the required March 30, 1959
publication, the Board issued an order granting it provisional
permit to operate such auto-truck service on the line applied FACTS: Petitioner is of legal age, widow, and a resident of
for. Tondo, Manila; is the widow of the late Lt. Tan Chiat Bee, a
Chinese national, and a bona fide member of the 1st
There was a motion for reconsideration and for the cancellation Regiment, United States-Chinese Volunteers in the
of such provisional permit filed on October 21, 1974, but Philippines;
without awaiting final action thereon, this petition was filed.
This is the explanation: "That petitioner has not waited for the That Tan Chiat Bee alias Tan Lian Lay died in the service on
resolution of his Motion for Reconsideration before going to April 4, 1945 in the battle at Ipo Dam, Rizal Province,
this Court considering that the question involved herein is Philippines; he was duly recognized as a guerrilla veteran and
purely a legal one, aside from the fact that the issuance of the certified to by the Armed Forces of the Philippines as having
Order without the Board having acquired jurisdiction of the rendered meritorious military services during the Japanese
case yet, is patently illegal or was performed without occupation;
jurisdiction.
That petitioner as the widow of the said recognized deceased
ISSUE: Whether the controversy is ripe for judicial veteran, filed an application for back pay under the provisions
determination? of Republic Act No. 897, the resolution of the Veterans Back
Pay Commissions;
HELD: Yes. For it is undeniable that at the time the petition
was filed. there was pending with the respondent Board a That the Adjutant, Armed Forces of the Philippines, has
motion for reconsideration. Ordinarily, its resolution should be verified and certified that deceased veteran has rendered
awaited. Prior thereto, an objection grounded on prematurity service as a recognized guerrilla for the period indicated in his
can be raised. Nonetheless, counsel for petitioner would stress •(Adjutant's) indorsement to the Chief, Finance Service Armed
that certiorari lies as the failure to observe procedural due Forces of the Philippines;
process ousted respondent Board of whatever jurisdiction it
could have had in the premises. This Court was impelled to Likewise, the Chief of Finance Service, Camp Murphy, has
go into the merits of the controversy at this stage, not only computed the backpay due the petitioner and the same was
because of the importance of the issue raised but also passed in audit by representatives of the Auditor General;
because of the strong public interest in having the matter
settled. That after due deliberation respondent revoked its previous
stands and ruled that aliens are not entitled to back pay;
As was set forth in Executive Order No. 101 which prescribes
the procedure to be followed by respondent Board, it is the That on February 13, 1957, the respondent Veterans Back Pay
policy of the State, as swiftly as possible, to improve the Commission, made a formal reply to the aforesaid claim of the
deplorable condition of vehicular traffic, obtain maximum herein petitioner denying her request on the ground that aliens
utilization of existing public motor vehicles and eradicate the are not entitled to back pay;

8
ADMINISTRATIVE LAW (ADMIN)

That upon refusal of the Veterans Back Pay Commission the


petitioner brought the case direct to this Honorable Court by
way of mandamus

ISSUE: W/N petitioner failed to exhaust available


administrative remedies?

HELD: No.

It is further contended by the Commission that the petitioner


should have first exhausted her administrative remedies by
appealing to the President of the Philippines, and that her
failure to do so is a bar to her action in court. The respondent
Commission is in estoppel to invoke this rule, considering
that in its resolution (Annex F of the Stipulation of Facts)
reiterating its obstinate refusal to abide by the opinion of the
Secretary of Justice, who is the legal adviser of the Executive
Department, the Commission declared that —

The opinions promulgated by the Secretary of Justice are


advisory in nature, which may either be accepted or
ignored by the office seeking the opinion, and any
aggrieved party has the court for recourse, (Annex F)

thereby leading the petitioner to conclude that only a final


judicial ruling in her favor would be accepted by the
Commission.

Neither is there substance in the contention that the petition is,


in effect, a suit against the government without its consent. the
relief prayed for is simply "the recognition of the petitioner-
appellee" under the provisions of sections 1 and 2 of Republic
Act No. 897, and consists in "directing an agency of the
government to perform an act . . . it is bound to perform."
Republic Act Nos. 304 and 897 necessarily embody state
consent to an action against the officers entrusted with the
implementation of said Acts in case of unjustified refusal to
recognize the rights of proper applicants.