Land Bank v. CA and Pascual
G.R. No. 128557, Dec. 29, 1999,
321 SCRA 629 (1999)
Private respondent Jose Pascual owned three (3) parcels of land located in Gattaran, Cagayan. Pursuant to PD 27 and EO 228, the DAR placed these lands under its Operation Land Transfer (OLT).
On 11 June 1992 the PARAD ruled in favor of private respondent and ordered petitioner LBP to pay private respondent a total amount of P1,961,950.00. Private respondent accepted the valuation.
Petitioner LBP having refused to comply with its obligation despite the directive of the Secretary of the DAR and the various demand letters of private respondent Jose Pascual, the latter finally filed an action for Mandamus in the Court of Appeals to compel petitioner to pay the valuation determined by the PARAD.
CA ruled in respondent’s favor.
Petitioner LBP contends that CA cannot issue the Writ of Mandamus because it cannot be compelled to perform an act which is beyond its legal duty. Petitioner cites Sec. 2 of PD 251, which amended Sec. 75 of RA 3844, 34 which provides that it is the duty of petitioner bank" (t)o finance and/or guarantee the acquisition, under Presidential Decree No. 85 dated December 25, 1972, of farm lands transferred to the tenant farmers pursuant to Presidential Decree No. 27 (P.D. 27) dated October 21, 1972."
Petitioner further argues that for a financing or guarantee agreement to exist there must be at least three (3) parties: the creditor, the debtor and the financier or the guarantor. Since petitioner merely guarantees or finances the payment of the value of the land, the farmer-beneficiary’s consent, being the principal debtor, is indispensable and that the only time petitioner becomes legally bound to finance the transaction is when the farmer-beneficiary approves the appraised land value. Petitioner fears that if it is forced to pay the value as determined by the DARAB, the government will suffer losses as the farmer-beneficiary, who does not agree to the appraised land value, will surely refuse to reimburse the amounts that petitioner had disbursed.
Whether or not the landowner, the DAR, the Land Bank and the farmer-beneficiary must all agree to the value of the land as determined by Land Bank
No. A perusal of the law however shows that the consent of the farmer-beneficiary is not required in establishing the vinculum juris for the proper compensation of the landowner. Section 18 of RA 6657 states --
Sec. 18. Valuation and Mode of Compensation. — The LBP shall compensate the landowner in such amount as may be agreed upon by the landowner and the DAR and the LBP in accordance with the criteria provided for in Sections 16 and 17 and other pertinent provisions hereof, or as may be finally determined by the court as the just compensation for the land (emphasis supplied).
As may be gleaned from the aforementioned section, the landowner, the DAR and the Land Bank are the only parties involved. The law does not mention the participation of the farmer-beneficiary.