CASE 2016-0075: NAGA CENTRUM INC., REPRESENTED BY AIDA KELLY YUBUCO V. SPOUSES RAMON J. ORZALES AND NENITA F. ORZALES,  (G.R. NO. 203576, 14 SEPTEMBER 2016 , DEL CASTILLO, J.) (SUBJECT/S: RIGHT OF WAY) (BRIEF TITLE: NAGA CENTURM VS  SPOUSES ORZALES)

 

DISPOSITIVE:

 

“WHEREFORE, the Petition is DENIED. The May 23, 2012 Decision and August 28, 2012 Resolution of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. CV No. 93926 are AFFIRMED.

 

 SO ORDERED”

 

SUBJECTS/DOCTRINES/DIGEST:

 

WHILE THE CASE FOR RIGHT OF WAY WAS PENDING, PETITIONER CONSTRUCTED STRUCTURES ON THE SITE, SUBJECT OF RIGHT OF WAY. SUBSEQUENTLY PETITIONER’S DEFENSE IS THAT THE RIGHT OF WAY OVER THE SITE IS IMPROPER BECAUSE THERE ARE ALREADY STRUCTURES. IS PETITIONER CORRECT?

 

NO. PETITIONER IS GUILTY OF GROSS AND EVIDENT MALICE. TO  ALLOW THIS WOULD BE TANTAMOUNT TO REWARDING MALICE, CUNNING, AND BAD FAITH.

 

“Petitioner thus acknowledged respondents’ right to use Rizal Street.  It should have known from familiarity not only with its own land, but with those adjoining it, and from the ongoing proceedings in the case, that respondents had no other way to and from Valentin Street than through its property.  For this reason, it is guilty of gross and evident malice and bad faith when, even while Civil Case No. 2004-0036 was pending, it deliberately blocked respondents’ access to Rizal Street by constructing a building thereon, dumping filling materials and junk on the main gate of respondents’ home, and converting portions of the road into an auto repair shop and parking space, making it difficult and                                                            

inconvenient, if not humiliating, for respondents to traverse the path to and from their home. Under Article 19 of the Civil Code, “( e )very person must, in the exercise of his rights and in the performance of his duties, act with justice, give everyone his due, and observe honesty and good faith.” Under Article 26, “( e )very person shall respect the dignity, personality, privacy and peace of mind of his neighbors.” Petitioner’s action betrays a perverse and deliberate intention to hurt and punish respondents for legally demanding a right of way which it nevertheless knew was forthcoming, and which, considering the size of its land, it may give without the least prejudice to its own rights.

 

The Court cannot therefore accept petitioner’s argument that since there are permanent structures already erected on the appointed right of way, then the parties should negotiate a different location therefor. To allow this would be tantamount to rewarding malice, cunning, and bad faith. Quite the contrary, petitioner deserves a lesson in not trifling with the rights of others, the law, and the courts. A party cannot be allowed to influence and manipulate the courts’ decisions by perfonning acts upon the disputed property during the pendency of the case, which would allow it to achieve the objectives it desires.”

 

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