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ALONZO, petitioners vs.

TECLA PADUA, respondent

G.R. No. 72873 May 28 1987

Topic: Duty to render judgement.

Five brothers and sisters inherited in equal pro indiviso (undivided) shares a parcel of land
registered in the name of their deceased parents under OCT No. 10977 of the Registry of Deeds
of Tarlac.
On March 15, 1963, Celestino Padua, transferred his undivided share by way of absolute sale
amounting to P550.00 to the couple Carlos and Casimira Alonzo (collectively will be called
Alonzos). A year later on April 22, 1964, Eustaqia Padua, one of the siblings, also sold her shares
to the Alonzos for the amount of P440.00.
The Alonzos occupied an area two-fifths of the lot representing the area that was sold to them.
They enclosed the area with a fence and in 1975 allowed their son Eduardo Alonzo and his wife
to build a semi-concrete house on a part of the enclosed area.
On February 25, 1976, Mariano Padua, sought to redeem the area sold to the spouses Alonzo,
but his complaint was dismissed as he was found to be an American Citizen. However his sister,
Tecla Padua also made the same complaint a year later on May 27,1977.
The trial court also dismissed the complaint on the grounds that the right to redemption had
lapsed, not having been exercised within thirty days from notice of the sales in 1964. Although no
written notice was made, they ruled that actual knowledge of the sales by the co-heirs is sufficient.
It was not possible for the Paduas not to notice the fence and semi-concrete house, also they
were friends and neighbors.
The respondent court however declared that only a written notice would satisfy the requirement
and upon the issuance of this notice, the thirty day redemption period start running. But the court
cannot ignore the established facts, they cannot accept the respondents pretense that they are
unaware of the sales made by their siblings. Sometime between the sale and the first complaint,
the other co-heirs were informed of the sale therefore the thirty day period started and expired
even before Tecla Padua made her complaint.
Whether or not the Court should render a ruling in strict accordance to the written law or to the
spirit and intent of the lawmakers in enacting the law?
The petition is granted in favor of the Alonzos. The decision of the respondent court is reversed
and the trial court is reinstated.