G.R. No. 233921. January 10, 2018

SECOND DIVISION: [G.R. No. 233921 (Formerly UDK-16004), January 10, 2018] MELECIO M. ABAD VERSUS ROVAL TRANSPORT CORPORATION AND MELISSA LIM.

After reviewing the Petition and its annexes, including the Court of Appeals (CA) Decision[1] dated May 5, 2017 and the Resolution[2] dated August 15, 2017 in C.A. G.R. SP No. 133256, the Court RESOLVES to DENY the instant Petition and AFFIRM the CA Decision dated May 5, 2017 and the Resolution dated August 15, 2017.

Roval Transport Corporation (Roval) complied with the requirements of procedural due process. The records show that the requisite twin notice and hearing were accorded to Melecio M. Abad (Abad). He was apprised of the charge against him. Abad submitted his written explanation, attended the administrative hearing and was notified of Roval's decision to dismiss him.

The Court affirms the CA's findings that Abad's failure to exercise the diligence required in driving a public utility bus, resulting to the death of the victim, constitutes a serious misconduct, a just cause for terminating Abad's employment. Abad admitted that he saw the victim lying down in the street. If he was indeed driving at a moderate speed, Abad could have easily avoided the victim just as the driver of the jeepney he was tailing had done.

Roval correctly exercised its management prerogative in dismissing Abad because as a common carrier, it must ensure that all its drivers perform their jobs with extraordinary diligence.

The Court finds no grave abuse of discretion, amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction on the part of the CA in affirming the Decision of the National Labor Relations Commission and the Labor Arbiter. The CA's ruling is supported by existing jurisprudence and the records of the case.

SO ORDERED. REYES, JR., J., on leave.

[1] Rollo, pp. 30-39. Penned by Associate Justice Carmelita Salandanan Manahan, with Associate Justices Magdangal M. De Leon and Maria Filomena D. Singh concurring.
[2] Id. at 40-42.

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