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DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION vs. GODOFREDO G.

CUANAN
G.R. No. 169013
December 16, 2008
AUSTRIA-MARTINEZ, J.
Facts:
On March 11, 1996, Luzviminda Borja and Juliana Castro, on behalf of their respective minor
daughters, Lily Borja and Charo Castro, filed before the Department of Education, Culture and
Sports two separate administrative complaints3 for Sexual Harassment and Conduct Unbecoming a
Public Officer against Cuanan, then Principal of Lawang Kupang Elementary School in San Antonio,
Nueva Ecija.
The Investigating Committee submitted its Investigation Report4 dated December 14, 1999, finding
Cuanan guilty of sexual harassment and recommending his forced resignation without prejudice to
benefits. In a Decision5 dated January 28, 2000, Regional Director Labrador concurred in the
findings of the Investigating Committee and meted out the penalty of forced resignation to Cuanan
without prejudice to benefits.
Then DepEd Secretary Andrew Gonzales affirmed the Decision of Regional Director Labrador. On
May 30, 2000, Cuanan filed a Petition for Reconsideration7 thereof, but the same was denied for lack
of merit by Secretary Gonzales in a Resolution8 dated June 19, 2000.
Cuanan elevated his case to the CSC. On January 20, 2003, the CSC issued Resolution No.
030069,9 which set aside the June 19, 2000 Resolution of Secretary Gonzales and exonerated
Cuanan from the charge of sexual harassment.
On April 11, 2003, then DepEd Secretary Edilberto C. de Jesus filed a Petition for
Review/Reconsideration18 with the CSC. No copy of the pleading was served upon Cuanan.
On July 29, 2003, Secretary De Jesus filed a Supplemental Petition for
Review/Reconsideration19 reiterating the prayer for reversal of the resolution. Again, no copy of the
pleading was served upon Cuanan.
Subsequently, pursuant to Division Special Order No. 001 series of 2003 dated June 18, 2003,
Cuanan was reinstated to his former position as school principal effective April 30, 2003.20 In Division
Special Order No. 285, series of 2003 dated July 8, 2003, Cuanan was directed to return to
duty.21 Based thereon, Cuanan requested payment of salaries and his inclusion in the payroll, which
the Division School Superintendent of Nueva Ecija duly endorsed on November 7, 2003.
However, on October 22, 2004, the CSC issued Resolution No. 04114723 setting aside CSC
Resolution No. 030069 dated January 20, 2003. It found Cuanan guilty of Sexual Harassment,
Grave Misconduct and Conduct Grossly Prejudicial to the Best Interest of the Service and meted out
the penalty of dismissal from the service with forfeiture of retirement benefits, cancellation of his
service eligibility, and perpetual disqualification from holding public office. Cuanan received a copy of
the Resolution on November 9, 2004.
Thirteen days later, or on November 22, 2004, Cuanan filed a petition for certiorari25 with the CA
seeking to annul Resolution No. 041147, alleging that the CSC should not have entertained the
petition for review/reconsideration since the DepEd was not the complainant or the party adversely
affected by the resolution; that the petition for review/reconsideration was filed out of time; and that

Cuanan was not furnished copies of the pleadings filed by the DepEd in violation of procedural due
process.
On May 16, 2005, the CA rendered a Decision26 granting the petition for certiorari and setting aside
CSC Resolution No. 041147 dated October 12, 2004.
Issue:
Whether or not Cuanan's right to due process was violated when he was not given a copy of the
pleadings filed by the DepEd or given the opportunity to comment thereon.
Held:
Yes. While it is true that administrative tribunals exercising quasi-judicial functions are free from the
rigidity of certain procedural requirements, they are bound by law and practice to observe the
fundamental and essential requirements of due process in justiciable cases presented before
them.44 The relative freedom of the CSC from the rigidities of procedure cannot be invoked to
evade what was clearly emphasized in the landmark case of Ang Tibay v. Court of Industrial
Relations:45 that all administrative bodies cannot ignore or disregard the fundamental and
essential requirements of due process.
Furthermore, Section 43.A.46 of the Uniform Rules in Administrative Cases in the Civil Service
provides:
Section 43.A. Filing of Supplemental Pleadings. - All pleadings filed by the parties with
the Commission, shall be copy furnished the other party with proof of service filed
with the Commission
Cuanan undoubtedly was denied procedural due process. He had no opportunity to participate in the
proceedings for the petition for review/ reconsideration filed by the DepEd, since no copy of the
pleadings filed by the DepEd were served upon him or his counsel; nor was he even required by the
CSC to file his comments thereon. Considering that pleadings filed by the DepEd were not served
upon Cuanan, they may be treated as mere scraps of paper which should not have merited the
attention or consideration of the CSC.

ANG TIBAY vs. THE COURT OF INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS


G.R. No. L-46496
February 27, 1940
LAUREL, J.
Facts:
The National Labor Union is a labor union working in ANG TIBAY under Toribio Teodoro and it
avers the following:
1. Toribio Teodoro's claim that on September 26, 1938, there was shortage of leather soles in
ANG TIBAY making it necessary for him to temporarily lay off the members of the National
Labor Union Inc. is entirely false and unsupported by the records of the Bureau of Customs
and the Books of Accounts of native dealers in leather.
2. That the supposed lack of leather materials claimed by Toribio Teodoro was but a scheme to
systematically prevent the forfeiture of this bond despite the breach of his CONTRACT with
the Philippine Army.
3. That the National Worker's Brotherhood of ANG TIBAY is a company or employer union
dominated by Toribio Teodoro, the existence and functions of which are illegal.
4. That the employer Toribio Teodoro was guilty of unfair labor practice for discriminating
against the National Labor Union, Inc., and unjustly favoring the National Workers'
Brotherhood.
NLU wanted to prove the above-statements by the records of the Bureau of Customs and the
Books of Accounts of native dealers in leather however the exhibits hereto attached are so
inaccessible to the respondents that even with the exercise of due diligence they could not be
expected to have obtained them and offered as evidence in the Court of Industrial Relations. And
that the attached documents and exhibits are of such far-reaching importance and effect that their
admission would necessarily mean the modification and reversal of the judgment rendered herein.
The respondent National Labor Union, Inc. prays for the vacation of the judgement rendered by
the majority of this Court and the remanding of the case to the Court of Industrial Relations for a new
trial

Issue:
Whether or not the NLU was denied due process when the exhibits attached to the petition to prove
Teodoros substantial averments" were made inaccessible to the NLU by the Court of Industrial
Relations that even within the exercise of due diligence they could not be expected to have obtained
them and offered as evidence in the Court of Industrial Relations

Held:
Yes. The Court of Industrial Relations may be said to be free from the rigidity of certain procedural
requirements does not mean that it can, in justifiable cases before it, entirely ignore or disregard the
fundamental and essential requirements of due process in trials and investigations of an
administrative character. There are primary rights which must be respected even in proceedings of
this character:

(1) rights is the right to a hearing, which includes the right of the party interested or affected
to present his own case and submit evidence in support thereof.
(2) the tribunal must consider the evidence presented.
(3) the decision has something to support it
(4) the evidence must be "substantial." It means such relevant evidence as a reasonable
mind will accept as adequate to support a conclusion."
(5) The decision must be rendered on the evidence presented at the hearing, or at least
contained in the record and disclosed to the parties affected
(6) The Court of Industrial Relations or any of its judges, therefore, must act on its or his
own independent consideration of the law and facts of the controversy, and not simply
accept the views of a subordinate in arriving at a decision.
(7) The Court of Industrial Relations should, in all controversial questions, render its decision
in such a manner that the parties to the proceeding can know the various issues involved,
and the reasons for the decision rendered. The performance of this duty is inseparable from
the authority conferred upon it.

By and large, after considerable discussions, we have come to the conclusion that the interest of
justice would be better served if the movant is given opportunity to present at the hearing the
documents referred to in his motion and such other evidence as may be relevant to the main issue
involved. The legislation which created the Court of Industrial Relations and under which it acts is
new. The failure to grasp the fundamental issue involved is not entirely attributable to the parties
adversely affected by the result. Accordingly, the motion for a new trial should be and the same is
hereby granted, and the entire record of this case shall be remanded to the Court of Industrial
Relations, with instruction that it reopen the case, receive all such evidence as may be relevant and
otherwise proceed in accordance with the requirements set forth hereinabove