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DAR and CARP/CARL [G.R. No. 125202. January 31, 2006.

] ERNESTO INGLES, MAXIMO CANOY, ISMAEL BONTILAO, CONRADO BONTILAO, SERGIO CANOY, ZALDY CANOY, REMITSOR CANOY, ROBERTO CANOY, RODULFO NABLE, GUILLERMO BORRES, ENRIQUE BORRES, LOBERTA BONTILAO, and NESTOR PIALDA, petitioners, vs. MANUEL CANTOS, DAR SECRETARY ERNESTO GARILAO, and DAR VII REGIONAL DIRECTOR ELMO BANARES, respondents. Regional Director is the head of a DAR Regional Office which, under the Administrative Code of 1987, is responsible for "supporting the field units and supervising program implementation of the Department within the region." The function of the DAR Regional Office includes "[implementing] laws, policies, plans, rules and regulations of the Department in the regional area." A similar function is delegated to the DAR Regional Offices under Executive Order No. 129-A. 13 Thus, the functions of the DAR Regional Director are purely administrative, that is, to put into operation agrarian laws and fill out the details necessary for their implementation, and not adjudicatory. On the other hand, when a dispute arises between parties affected by the operation of agrarian laws, the controversy should be settled in an adversarial proceeding before the DARAB, the quasi-judicial arm of the DAR. 14 A function becomes judicial or quasi-judicial in nature when the exercise thereof involves the determination of rights and obligations of the parties. [G.R. No. 106028. May 9, 2001.] LILIA Y. GONZALES, petitioner, vs. COURT OF APPEALS, HON. ANTONIO S. MARAYA, as Regional Director, DAR, Region VI, Iloilo City, LAND BANK OF THE PHILIPPINES, Iloilo City, RAMON PERUEL, MARCELINO BOLIVAR, ALFONSO CARMELO, ESPERIDION PELEGRINO and WILFREDO CARMELO 1 , respondents. A Regional Director is the head of a DAR Regional Office which, under the Administrative Code of 1987, is responsible for "supporting the field units and supervising program implementation of the Department within the region". The function of the DAR Regional Office includes "[implementing] laws, policies, plans, rules and regulations of the Department in the regional area". A similar function is delegated to the DAR Regional Offices under Executive Order No. 129-A. With such a

2 broad function and responsibility, it may be reasonably concluded that the issuance of the assailed orders pursuant to the operation land transfer and tenant emancipation program of the government is within the authority and jurisdiction of the DAR Regional Director. [G.R. No. 159145. April 29, 2005.] DEPARTMENT OF AGRARIAN REFORM ADJUDICATION BOARD (DARAB) of the DEPARTMENT OF AGRARIAN REFORM (DAR), REPRESENTED by DAR SECRETARY ROBERTO M. PAGDANGANAN, petitioner, vs. JOSEFINA S. LUBRICA, in her capacity as Assignee of the rights and interest of FEDERICO SUNTAY, respondent. Pursuant to Section 17 of Executive Order (E.O.) No. 229 and Section 13 of E.O. No. 129-A, the DARAB was created to act as the quasi-judicial arm of the DAR. With the passage of R.A. No. 6657, the adjudicatory powers and functions of the DAR were further delineated when, under Section 50 thereof, it was vested with the primary jurisdiction to determine and adjudicate agrarian reform matters and exclusive original jurisdiction over all matters involving the implementation of agrarian reform except those falling under the exclusive jurisdiction of the Department of Agriculture, Department of Environment and Natural Resources and the Special Agrarian Courts. The same provision granted the DAR the power to summon witnesses, administer oaths, take testimony, require submission of reports, compel the production of books and documents and answers to interrogatories and issue subpoena and subpoena duces tecum, and enforce its writs through sheriffs or other duly deputized officers, and the broad power to adopt a uniform rule of procedure to achieve a just, expeditious and inexpensive determination of cases before it. 29 Section 13 of E.O. No. 129-A also authorized the DAR to delegate its adjudicatory powers and functions to its regional offices. To this end, the DARAB adopted its Rules of Procedure, where it delegated to the RARADs and PARADs the authority "to hear, determine and adjudicate all agrarian cases and disputes, and incidents in connection therewith, arising within their assigned territorial jurisdiction." 30 In the absence of a specific statutory grant of jurisdiction to issue the said extraordinary writ of certiorari, the DARAB, as a quasi-judicial body with only limited jurisdiction, cannot exercise jurisdiction over Land Bank's petition for certiorari. Neither the quasi-judicial authority of the DARAB nor its rule-making power justifies such self-conferment of authority. ISAaTH [G.R. No. 163285. February 27, 2008.]

3 DEPARTMENT OF AGRARIAN REFORM, rep. by REGIONAL DIRECTOR NASER M. MUSALI, petitioner, vs. HON. HAKIM S. ABDULWAHID, Presiding Judge, Regional Trial Court, Br. XII of Zamboanga City, and YUPANGCO COTTON MILLS, INC., respondents. Under Section 50 of R.A. No. 6657, "all matters involving the implementation of agrarian reform" are within the DAR's primary, exclusive and original jurisdiction, and at the first instance, only the DARAB as the DAR's quasi-judicial body, can "determine and adjudicate all agrarian disputes, cases, controversies, and matters or incidents involving the implementation of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program under R.A. No. 6657, E.O. Nos. 229, 228 and 129-A, R.A. No. 3844 as amended by R.A. 6389, P.D. No. 27 and other agrarian laws and their implementing rules and regulations." [G.R. No. 164934. August 14, 2007.] HEIRS OF FLORENCIO ADOLFO, petitioners, vs. VICTORIA P. CABRAL, GREGORIA ADOLFO and GREGORIO LAZARO, respondents. Section 50 of Rep. Act No. 6657 confers on the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) quasi-judicial powers to adjudicate agrarian reform matters. In the process of reorganizing the DAR, Executive Order No. 129-A 25 created the DARAB to assume the powers and functions with respect to the adjudication of agrarian reform matters. 26 Section 1, Rule II of the DARAB 2003 Rules of Procedure 27 enumerates the cases falling within its primary and exclusive original jurisdiction, as follows: SECTION 1. Primary and Exclusive Original Jurisdiction. The Adjudicator shall have primary and exclusive original jurisdiction to determine and adjudicate the following cases: TAcDHS 1.1 The rights and obligations of persons, whether natural or juridical, engaged in the management, cultivation, and use of all agricultural lands covered by Republic Act (RA) No. 6657, otherwise known as the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law (CARL), and other related agrarian laws; 2 In an earlier ruling rendered in the case of Vda. de Tangub v. Court of Appeals, 28 reiterated in Morta, Sr. v. Occidental 29 and Heirs of the late Herman Rey Santos v. Court of Appeals, 30 this Court decreed: AaITCS 3 Section 1 of Executive Order No. 229 sets out the scope of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP); it states that the program

4 4 ". . . shall cover, regardless of tenurial arrangement and commodity produce, all public and private agricultural land as provided in Proclamation No. 131 dated July 22, 1987, including whenever applicable in accordance with law, other lands of the public domain suitable to agriculture." Section 17 thereof 1) vested the Department of Agrarian Reform with "quasijudicial powers to determine and adjudicate agrarian reform matters," and 2) granted it "jurisdiction over all matters involving implementation of agrarian reform, except those falling under the exclusive original jurisdiction of the DENR and the Department of Agriculture (DA), as well as 'powers to punish for contempt and to issue subpoena, subpoena duces tecum and writs to enforce its orders or decisions.'" 31 In Nuesa v. Court of Appeals, 32 the Court, in addition to reechoing the jurisdiction of the DARAB, puts emphasis on the extent of the coverage of the term "agrarian dispute," thus: As held by this Court in Centeno v. Centeno [343 SCRA 153], "the DAR is vested with the primary jurisdiction to determine and adjudicate agrarian reform matters and shall have the exclusive jurisdiction over all matters involving the implementation of the agrarian reform program." The DARAB has primary, original and appellate jurisdiction "to determine and adjudicate all agrarian disputes, cases, controversies, and matters or incidents involving the implementation of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program under R.A. 6657, E.O. Nos. 229, 228 and 129-A, R.A. 3844 as amended by R.A. 6389, P.D. No. 27 and other agrarian laws and their implementing rules and regulations." TEAaDC Under Section 3(d) of R.A. 6657 (CARP Law), "agrarian dispute" is defined to include "(d). . . any controversy relating to tenurial arrangements, whether leasehold, tenancy, stewardship or otherwise over lands devoted to agriculture, including disputes concerning farmworkers associations or representation of persons in negotiating, fixing, maintaining, changing or seeking to arrange terms or conditions of such tenurial arrangements. It includes any controversy relating to compensation of lands acquired under this Act and other terms and conditions of transfer of ownership from landowners to farmworkers, tenants and other agrarian reform beneficiaries, whether the disputants stand in the proximate relation of farm operator and beneficiary, landowner and tenant, or lessor and lessee." (Underlining ours) Taking instructions from the foregoing discussion, the instant case being one for annulment of CLOA, an incident involving the implementation of the CARP, and a matter relating to

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5 terms and conditions of transfer of ownership from landlord to agrarian reform beneficiaries, jurisdiction is properly vested with the DARAB. [G.R. No. 132561. June 30, 2005.] PHILIPPINE VETERANS BANK, petitioner, vs. HON. COURT OF APPEALS, LAZARO CRUZ, FRANCISCO T. CRUZ, Provincial Agrarian Reform Officer ERLINDA PEARL V. ARMADA, DAR Provincial Adjudicator HON. GREGORIO D. SAPERA and THE REGISTER OF DEEDS OF THE PROVINCE OF BULACAN, respondents. In an earlier ruling rendered in the case of Vda. de Tangub v. Court of Appeals, 28 reiterated in Morta, Sr. v. Occidental 29 and Heirs of the late Herman Rey Santos v. Court of Appeals, 30 this Court decreed: AaITCS Section 1 of Executive Order No. 229 sets out the scope of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP); it states that the program ". . . shall cover, regardless of tenurial arrangement and commodity produce, all public and private agricultural land as provided in Proclamation No. 131 dated July 22, 1987, including whenever applicable in accordance with law, other lands of the public domain suitable to agriculture." Section 17 thereof 1) vested the Department of Agrarian Reform with "quasijudicial powers to determine and adjudicate agrarian reform matters," and 2) granted it "jurisdiction over all matters involving implementation of agrarian reform, except those falling under the exclusive original jurisdiction of the DENR and the Department of Agriculture (DA), as well as 'powers to punish for contempt and to issue subpoena, subpoena duces tecum and writs to enforce its orders or decisions.'" 31 In Nuesa v. Court of Appeals, 32 the Court, in addition to reechoing the jurisdiction of the DARAB, puts emphasis on the extent of the coverage of the term "agrarian dispute," thus: As held by this Court in Centeno v. Centeno [343 SCRA 153], "the DAR is vested with the primary jurisdiction to determine and adjudicate agrarian reform matters and shall have the exclusive jurisdiction over all matters involving the implementation of the agrarian reform program." The DARAB has primary, original and appellate jurisdiction "to determine and adjudicate all agrarian disputes, cases, controversies, and matters or incidents involving the implementation of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program under R.A. 6657, E.O. Nos. 229, 228 and 129-A, R.A.

6 3844 as amended by R.A. 6389, P.D. No. 27 and other agrarian laws and their implementing rules and regulations." TEAaDC Under Section 3(d) of R.A. 6657 (CARP Law), "agrarian dispute" is defined to include "(d). . . any controversy relating to tenurial arrangements, whether leasehold, tenancy, stewardship or otherwise over lands devoted to agriculture, including disputes concerning farmworkers associations or representation of persons in negotiating, fixing, maintaining, changing or seeking to arrange terms or conditions of such tenurial arrangements. It includes any controversy relating to compensation of lands acquired under this Act and other terms and conditions of transfer of ownership from landowners to farmworkers, tenants and other agrarian reform beneficiaries, whether the disputants stand in the proximate relation of farm operator and beneficiary, landowner and tenant, or lessor and lessee." (Underlining ours) Taking instructions from the foregoing discussion, the instant case being one for annulment of CLOA, an incident involving the implementation of the CARP, and a matter relating to terms and conditions of transfer of ownership from landlord to agrarian reform beneficiaries, jurisdiction is properly vested with the DARAB.