DOJ OPINION NO. 001, s. 1994
January 17, 1994
Dr. Bernabe B. Cocjin, Ph. D.
West Visayas State University
(Formerly Iloilo Normal School)
S i r :
This has reference to your request for opinion on the applicability of the Supreme Court decision in G.R. No. 100091, entitled, "Central Mindanao University (CMU) vs. The Department of Agrarian Reform Adjudicatory Board, et. al." (October 22, 1992) to the West Visayas State University (WVSU), in which it was ruled that lands of CMU reserved for educational purposes are excluded from the coverage of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law (CARL).
The request appears to have arisen from the opinion of the DAR's legal office which was conveyed to you by DAR Undersecretary Renato Padilla that the aforesaid decision in the CMU case does not apply to WVSU to which opinion, you disagree.
We regret to have to decline rendition of opinion/ruling on your query. By established practice and precedents, the Secretary of Justice has consistently refrained from rendering opinion or legal advice involving the interpretation or application of court orders or decisions, since the resolution of such issues primarily pertains to the court (Secretary of Justice Ops. No. 161, s. 1981; No. 1, s. 1979; No. 115, s. 1974 and No. 75, s. 1960). Considering that the instant matter involves the authority of the DAR which is "vested with primary jurisdiction to determine and adjudicate agrarian reform matters and shall have exclusive original jurisdiction over all matters involving the implementation of agrarian reform (Section 50, R.A. No. 6657), the Secretary of Justice likewise has to refrain from expressing his views on your query in line with our long standing policy to decline rendition of opinion on matters falling within the jurisdiction of another government office or body, unless its request (Id., Op. No. 1, s. 1991; Nos. 126 and 165, s. 1990; and No. 72, s. 1983).
Very truly yours,
FRANKLIN M. DRILON