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ROQUE C. FACURA and EDUARDO F. TUASON, Petitioners, v COURT OF APPEALS, RODOLFO S. DE JESUS and EDELWINA DG.

PARUNGAO,
Respondents.
J. Mendoza February 16, 2011 Nos. 166495 and 184129 and 184263
Doctrine The principle of res judicata lays down two main rules:

1. Bar by former judgment under Paragraph (b) of Section 47, RoC - the judgment or decree of a court of competent jurisdiction
on the merits concludes the litigation between the parties and their privies and constitutes a bar to a new action or suit involving
the same cause of action either before the same or any other tribunal; and
2. Conclusiveness of judgment under Paragraph of Section 47, RoC - any right, fact, or matter in issue directly adjudicated or
necessarily involved in the determination of an action before a competent court in which a judgment or decree is rendered on the
merits is conclusively settled by the judgment therein and cannot again be litigated between the parties and their privies whether
or not the claims or demands, purposes, or subject matters of the two suits are the same.

Facts The Local Water Utilities Administration (LWUA) is a GOCC chartered under PD 198. De Jesus was the Deputy Administrator for
Administrative Services of LWUA, while Parungao was its Human Resources Management Department (HRMD) Manager for
Administrative Services.
De Jesus was dismissed from the service per LWUA Board Resolutions and prohibited him from acting on any matter as head of
Administrative Services. De Jesus appealed to the CSC to nullify Board Resolutions.
Pending resolution of his petition with the CSC, De Jesus filed a petition for reinstatement with a newly-reconstituted LWUA
Board, which granted it. De Jesus then withdrew his petition with the CSC.
Under the CSC Accreditation Program, LWUA has been granted the authority to take final action on appointment papers
effective January 1, 1997.
Prior to the grant of authority to De Jesus to sign appointment papers, LWUA requested the Department of Budget and
Management for authority to hire confidential staff for the LWUA Board of Trustee.
Eventually, DBM granted the request to fill positions for the LWUA Boards confidential staff. Pursuant to this,
LWUA board members issued their respective inter-office memoranda and letter containing the retroactive
appointments of their confidential staff.
As HRMD head, Parungao forwarded the said documents to the Personnel Division to have them transformed into
formal appointment papers.
De Jesus and Parungao issued office orders stating the retroactive appointment of 9 personnel.
LWUA Administrator Jamora issued an inter-office memorandum to the accounting department ordering the immediate payment
of their back salaries and other remunerations.
A LWUA disbursement voucher was prepared and processed by the Accounting Department, and Administrator
Jamora thereafter approved the release of a Land Bank check amounting to P624,570.00 as part of the cash advance
amounting to P692,657.31, for the payment of the back salaries.
De Jesus and Parungao, with the prior approval of Administrator Jamora, re-issued the appointments of the Boards 9 confidential
staff. The appointment papers were now all dated December 12, 2001.
Administrator Jamora again wrote a letter to the DBM clarifying whether its December 11, 2001 letter, approving the hiring of the
confidential staff of the LWUA Board, had retroactive effect. It was explained that the said confidential staff had started rendering
services as early as August 20, 2001, when the Board assumed office because their services were urgently needed by the
trustees.
The Internal Control Office (ICO) of LWUA issued a memorandum questioning the issuance of the retroactive appointment
papers. It pointed out that since the appointment papers submitted to the CSC indicated December 12, 2001 as effective date,
the appointment of the involved personnel to the government service should be considered effective only on said date, with their
salaries and other compensation computed only from December 12, 2001. Thus, there was an overpayment made.
LWUA received DBMs reply that the previously granted authority on the hiring of the confidential staff to the LWUA Board may
be implemented retroactive to the date of actual service rendered by the employees involved.
Meanwhile, in relation to the earlier appeal of De Jesus (which he withdrew upon his reinstatement by the newly reconstituted
LWUA Board), the CSC issued a Resolution remanding the case to LWUA for the conduct of an investigation regarding De Jesus
dismissal.
The CSC issued a Resolution declaring the reinstatement of De Jesus illegal, null and void. The Board was directed to recall the
reinstatement of De Jesus, and LWUA was ordered to continue the conduct of the investigation on De Jesus as earlier directed.
For failure of LWUA to conduct an investigation, the case was considered dismissed, closed and terminated.
Complaint of Facura and Tuason: They filed a Joint Affidavit-Complaint before the Evaluation and Preliminary Investigation
Bureau of the Ombudsman against De Jesus and Parungao charging them with: 1) violation of Section 3(e) of R.A. No. 3019;
and 2) dishonesty, gross neglect of duty, grave misconduct, falsification of official documents, being notoriously undesirable, and
conduct prejudicial to the best interest of the service, for the fabrication of fraudulent appointments of nine (9) coterminous
employees of LWUA.
that the retroactive appointment papers were fabricated and fraudulent as they were made to appear to have been
signed/approved on the dates stated, and not on the date of their actual issuance.
They questioned the issuance of the fraudulent appointments in favor of the nine (9) confidential staff, to the prejudice
of the government in the amount of P692,657.31, as these were used as basis for the payment of their back salaries.
that De Jesus reinstatement was illegal and that he had lost authority to sign any LWUA documents effective upon the
issuance of LWUA Board Resolutions. Thus, the actions undertaken by him in signing the fraudulent appointments
were all misrepresented and, therefore, unlawful. They further alleged that contrary to law, De Jesus continued to
receive his salary and benefits as Deputy Administrator of LWUA despite having already been dismissed. They cited
the string of criminal and administrative cases against De Jesus before the trial courts and the Ombudsman.
The Ruling of the Ombudsman: Without conducting a preliminary conference or investigation, Special Pros. Agagon came up
with the assailed Review and Recommendation finding De Jesus and Parungao guilty of grave misconduct, dishonesty, gross
neglect of duty, and falsification and are meted out the penalty of Dismissal from the service with prejudice to re-entry into the
government service.
The appointments were found to have been prepared and issued by De Jesus and Parungao after the former had
been terminated from LWUA, therefore, without authority to sign/act on any official LWUA document/official matter,
the DBM approved the LWUA request on retroactivity of payment of back salaries because not all facts attendant to
the illegal appointments had been disclosed to said office. The deliberate concealment of the illegal appointment
papers was dishonest.
The Ruling of the Court of Appeals: granted the issuance of a writ of preliminary mandatory injunction in favor of De Jesus and
Parungao, enjoining LWUA and the Office of the Ombudsman from enforcing the assailed Order and are thereby directed to
maintain and/or restore the status quo existing at the time of the filing of the present petition by reinstating petitioners to their
former positions pending the resolution of this case. MR denied.
Facura and Tuason then filed the present Petition for Certiorari with this Court questioning the above-mentioned Resolutions of
the CA. The SC granted the review by ordering the reinstatement of petitioner Parungao as Manager of the Human Resource
Management Department of LWUA with back pay and without loss of seniority while affirming the dismissal of petitioner De
Jesus from the government service with prejudice to re-entry thereto.
Hence, the present Petitions for Review on Certiorari separately filed by De Jesus and the Ombudsman.
G.R. No. 166495 is a petition for certiorari filed by Roque Facura and Eduardo Tuason assailing the Resolutions of the Court of
Appeals, which granted the applications for preliminary mandatory injunction filed by Atty. Rodolfo De Jesus and Atty. Edelwina
Parungao by ordering their reinstatement to their former positions despite the standing order of dismissal issued by the Office of
the Ombudsman against them.
G.R. No. 184129 is an appeal, by way of Petition for Review on Certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court, filed by De Jesus,
from the Decision and Resolution of the CA, which affirmed the Review and Recommendation issued by the Ombudsman
dismissing De Jesus from the government service with prejudice to re-entry thereto.
G.R. 184263 is another appeal, by way of Petition for Review on Certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court filed by the
Ombudsman from the Decision and Resolution for ordering the reinstatement of Parungao as Manager of the Human Resources
Management Department (HRMD) of the Local Water Utilities Administration (LWUA), thereby modifying the Review and
Recommendation by the Ombudsman dismissing Parungao from the government service with prejudice to re-entry thereto.

Issues/ G.R. No. 166495


Ratio
I. Whether an appeal of the Ombudsman decision in an administrative case carries with it the immediate suspension of
the imposed penalty [YES]
1. In Ombudsman v. Samaniego, the Court held that the decision of the Ombudsman is immediately executory pending appeal and
may not be stayed by the filing of an appeal or the issuance of an injunctive writ as provided by Section 7, Rule III of the Rules of
Procedure of the Office of the Ombudsman, as amended by Administrative Order No. 17 dated September 15, 2003.1
2. Respondent cannot successfully rely on Section 12, Rule 43 of the Rules of Court2 because:
a. The Rules of Court apply to cases in the Office of the Ombudsman suppletorily only when the procedural matter is not
governed by any specific provision in the Rules of Procedure of the Office of the Ombudsman.
b. Here, Section 7, Rule III of the Rules of Procedure of the Office of the Ombudsman, as amended, is categorical, an
appeal shall not stop the decision from being executory.
c. For the CA to issue a preliminary injunction that will stay the penalty imposed by the Ombudsman in an administrative
case would be to encroach on the rule-making powers of the Office of the Ombudsman under the Constitution and RA
6770 as the injunctive writ will render nugatory the provisions of Section 7, Rule III of the Rules of Procedure of the
Office of the Ombudsman.
3. As applied: The dismissal of De Jesus and Parungao from the government service is immediately executory pending appeal. The
CAs issuance of a preliminary mandatory injunction, staying the penalty of dismissal imposed by the Ombudsman in this
administrative case, is thus an encroachment on the rule-making powers of the Ombudsman under Section 13 (8), Article XI of
the Constitution, and Sections 18 and 27 of R.A. No. 6770, which grants the Office of the Ombudsman the authority to
promulgate its own rules of procedure. The issuance of an injunctive writ renders nugatory the provisions of Section 7, Rule III of
the Rules of Procedure of the Office of the Ombudsman.

G.R. Nos. 184129 & 184263

II. [DOCTRINAL] Whether De Jesus was rightfully dismissed from the government service on the ground of falsification of
documents [NO]
1. The original complaint filed with the Ombudsman by Facura and Tuason spawned two cases:
a. administrative proceeding which is the subject of this present case, and
b. a proceeding for the determination of probable cause for the filing of criminal charges
2. De Jesus contends that under the doctrine of conclusiveness of judgment and/or res judicata, the present case is bound by the
decision of this Court in De Jesus v. Sandiganbayan.

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SEC. 7. Finality and execution of decision. Where the respondent is absolved of the charge, and in case of conviction where the penalty imposed is public censure or
reprimand, suspension of not more than one month, or a fine equivalent to one month salary, the decision shall be final, executory and unappealable. In all other cases,
the decision may be appealed to the Court of Appeals on a verified petition for review under the requirements and conditions set forth in Rule 43 of the Rules of Court,
within fifteen (15) days from receipt of the written Notice of the Decision or Order denying the motion for reconsideration.

An appeal shall not stop the decision from being executory. In case the penalty is suspension or removal and the respondent wins such appeal, he shall be
considered as having been under preventive suspension and shall be paid the salary and such other emoluments that he did not receive by reason of the
suspension or removal.

A decision of the Office of the Ombudsman in administrative cases shall be executed as a matter of course. The Office of the Ombudsman shall ensure that the
decision shall be strictly enforced and properly implemented. The refusal or failure by any officer without just cause to comply with an order of the Office of the
Ombudsman to remove, suspend, demote, fine, or censure shall be a ground for disciplinary action against such officer.
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SEC. 12. Effect of appeal The appeal shall not stay the award, judgment, final order or resolution sought to be reviewed unless the Court of Appeals shall direct
otherwise upon such terms as it may deem just.
a. Ombudsman found probable cause to file 9 informations for falsification of public documents against De Jesus and
Parungao with the Sandiganbayan.
b. Upon a petition for certiorari filed by De Jesus, the SC found for De Jesus and ruled that the evidence could not
sustain a prima facie case. The Court stated that there was no reasonable ground to believe that the requisite
criminal intent or mens rea was present, finding that nothing in the two sets of appointment papers constituted an
absolutely false narration of facts.
c. As a result, the criminal cases filed with the Sandiganbayan were consequently dismissed.
3. De Jesus cited the case of Borlongan v. Buenaventura3 to support his argument that this administrative case should be bound by
the decision in De Jesus v. Sandiganbayan.
4. The doctrine of res judicata is set forth in Section 47 of Rule 39 of the Rules of Court.4 See Doctrine.
5. As what is involved in this case is a proceeding for the determination of probable cause and an administrative case, necessarily
involving different causes of action, the applicable principle is conclusiveness of judgment.
a. Under the principle of conclusiveness of judgment, when a right or fact has been judicially tried and determined by a
court of competent jurisdiction, or when an opportunity for such trial has been given, the judgment of the court, as long
as it remains unreversed, should be conclusive upon the parties and those in privity with them. Simply put,
conclusiveness of judgment bars the relitigation of particular facts or issues in another litigation between the same
parties on a different claim or cause of action.
6. As applied: Although involving different causes of action, this administrative case and the proceeding for probable cause are
grounded on the same set of facts, involve the same issue of falsification of official documents, and require the same quantum of
evidence substantial evidence, as was similarly found in Borlongan, and correctly relied upon by De Jesus. Hence, the finding
that nothing in the two sets of appointment papers constitutes an absolutely false narration of facts is binding on this case, but
only insofar as the issue of falsification of public documents is concerned, and not on the other issues involved herein, namely,
the other acts of De Jesus and Parungao which may amount to dishonesty, gross neglect of duty, grave misconduct, being
notoriously undesirable, and conduct prejudicial to the best interest of the service, as charged in the complaint.
7. Meanwhile the doctrine in Montemayor v. Bundalian that res judicata applies only to judicial or quasi-judicial proceedings,
and not to the exercise of administrative powers, has been abandoned in subsequent cases which have since applied the
principle of res judicata to administrative cases. Hence, res judicata can likewise be made applicable to the case at bench. Thus,
given all the foregoing, the factual finding in De Jesus that there was no false statement of facts in both sets of appointment
papers, is binding in this case.
8. Also, the Court believes that De Jesus and Parungao believed they were making true statements. They prepared and signed the
first set on the basis of the inter-office memoranda issued by the Board members appointing their respective confidential staff
conformably with DBM approval. The second set was prepared to correct the retroactive appointments to conform to the CSC
reportorial requirements, and the same was also approved by Administrator Jamora. There was no reason for De Jesus and
Parungao to believe such to be false. Irregular it is perhaps, not being in conformity with the CSC rules on accreditation, but not
false. Therefore, this Court finds that no falsification of official documents occurred.

III. Whether Parungao was rightfully exonerated [NO]


1. Parungao is guilty of simple neglect of duty. Simple neglect of duty is defined as the failure to give proper attention to a task
expected from an employee resulting from either carelessness or indifference.
2. As applied: Given Parungaos duties under the CSC Accreditation Program, she should have been aware of the reportorial
requirements, and of the fact that it is the CSC which has authority over appointments, and not the DBM. Had she given the
proper attention to her responsibility as HRMO, the first set of appointment papers would never have been issued, thereby
avoiding the present predicament altogether.

Held 1. In G.R. No. 166495, the petition is GRANTED. The assailed September 22, 2004 and January 4, 2005 Resolutions of the Court of
Appeals are hereby REVERSED and SET ASIDE. The writ of preliminary mandatory injunction issued in CA-G.R. SP No. 84902 is
ordered DISSOLVED.
2. in G.R. No. 184129, the petition is GRANTED, and in G.R. No. 184263, the petition is PARTIALLY GRANTED. The assailed May 26,
2005 Decision and August 6, 2008 Resolution of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. SP No. 84902, are hereby REVERSED and SET
ASIDE, and a new one entered
a. ordering the reinstatement of Rodolfo S. De Jesus as Deputy Administrator of the LWUA with full back salaries and
such other emoluments that he did not receive by reason of his removal; and
b. finding Human Resources Management Officer Edelwina DG. Parungao GUILTY of Simple Neglect of Duty and
hereby imposing the penalty of suspension from office for one (1) month and one (1) day without pay.

Prepared by: Kim Dela Cruz [ADMIN| Prof WAGA]

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In Borlongan, similar to the situation prevailing in this case, the complaint-affidavit filed with the Ombudsman also spawned two cases - a proceeding for the
determination of probable cause for the filing of criminal charges, and an administrative case subject of the petition. In said case, this Court found that its factual
findings regarding the proceeding for the determination of probable cause bound the disposition of the factual issues in the administrative case under the principle of
conclusiveness of judgment, as both the probable cause proceeding and the administrative case require the same quantum of evidence, that is, substantial evidence.
Furthermore, the factual backdrop in the proceeding for the determination of probable cause, which this Court declared as insufficient to hold respondents for trial, was
the same set of facts which confronted this Court in the administrative case.
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Sec. 47. Effect of judgments or final orders. - The effect of a judgment or final order rendered by a court of the Philippines, having jurisdiction to pronounce the
judgment or final order, may be as follows:
xxx
(b)In other cases, the judgment or final order is, with respect to the matter directly adjudged or as to any other matter that could have been raised in relation thereto,
conclusive between the parties and their successors in interest by title subsequent to the commencement of the action or special proceeding, litigating for the same thing
and under the same title and in the same capacity; and
(c)In any other litigation between the same parties or their successors in interest, that only is deemed to have been adjudged in a former judgment or final order which
appears upon its face to have been so adjudged, or which actually and necessarily included therein or necessary thereto.