In Re: Complaint of Ongjoco v. Enriquez

A.M. OCA IPI No. 11-184-CA-J : January 31, 2012

RE: VERIFIED COMPLAINT OF ENGR. OSCAR L. ONGJOCO, CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD/CEO OF FH-GYMN MULTI-PURPOSE AND TRANSPORT SERVICE COOPERATIVE, AGAINST HON. JUAN Q. ENRIQUEZ, JR., HON. RAMON M. BATO, JR. AND HON. FLORITO S. MACALINO, ASSOCIATE JUSTICES, COURT OF APPEALS

BERSAMIN,J.:

FACTS:

The Court received a letter from Engr. Oscar L. Ongjoco, which included a complaint-affidavit,whereby Ongjoco charged the CAs Sixth Division for rendering an arbitrary and baseless decision in CA-G.R. SP No. 102289.

The genesis of CA-G.R. SP No. 102289 started when FH-GYMN requested the amendment of Kautusang Bayan Blg. 37-02-97 in order to include the authorization of FH-GYMNs Chairman to issue motorized tricycle operators permit (MTOP) to its members. Indeed, later on, the Sanggunian, acting upon the recommendation of the Committee, denied the request of FH-GYMN for alleged bias against FH-GYMN.

On July 15, 2005, FH-GYMN brought a complaint in the Office of the Deputy Ombudsman for Luzon charging Baluyut, Concepcion, Aguirre, Mendoza with violations of Article 124(2)(d) of the Cooperative Code, Section 3(e) and (f) of the Republic Act No. 3019 (Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act), and Section 5(a) of Republic Act No. 6713 (Code of Conduct for Public Officials and Employees). Eventually, the complaint of FH-GYMN was dismissed for insufficiency of evidence as to the public officials, and for lack of merit and lack of jurisdiction as to the private respondents. FH-GYMN sought reconsideration, but its motion to that effect was denied.

FH-GYMN timely filed a petition for review in the CA. CAs Sixth Division denied the petition for review.

Thereafter, Ongjoco initiated this administrative case against the aforenamed member of the CAs Sixth Division.

In the complaint, Ongjoco maintained that respondent members of the CAs Sixth Division violated Section 14, Article VIII of the 1987 Constitution by not specifically stating the facts and the law on which the denial of the petition for review was based; that they summarily denied the petition for review without setting forth the basis for denying the five issues FH-GYMN's petition for review raised; that the denial was "unjust, unfair and partial," and heavily favored the other party; that the denial of the petition warranted the presumption of "directly or indirectly becoming interested for personal gain" under Section 3(i) of Republic Act No. 3019; and that the Ombudsman officials who were probably respondent Justices schoolmates or associates persuaded, induced or influenced said Justices to dismiss the petition for review and to manipulate the delivery of the copy of the decision to FH-GYMN to prevent it from timely filing a motion for reconsideration.

ISSUE: Whether or not CA's Sixth Division is guilty of the charges filed against them?

HELD: Court of Appeals decision is sustained.

CONSTITUTIONAL LAW: administrative law; judges


We seize this occasion, therefore, to stress once again that disciplinary proceedings and criminal actions brought against any judge in relation to the performance of his official functions are neither complementary to nor suppletory of appropriate judicial remedies, nor a substitute for such remedies. Any party who may feel aggrieved should resort to these remedies, and exhaust them, instead of resorting to disciplinary proceedings and criminal actions.

A judge's failure to correctly interpret the law or to properly appreciate the evidence presented does not necessarily incur administrative liability,for to hold him administratively accountable for every erroneous ruling or decision he renders, assuming he has erred, will be nothing short of harassment and will make his position doubly unbearable. His judicial office will then be rendered untenable, because no one called upon to try the facts or to interpret the law in the process of administering justice can be infallible in his judgment.Administrative sanction and criminal liability should be visited on him only when the error is so gross, deliberate and malicious, or is committed with evident bad faith,or only in clear cases of violations by him of the standards and norms of propriety and good behavior prescribed by law and the rules of procedure, or fixed and defined by pertinent jurisprudence.

DISMISSED.

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