DOJ OPINION NO. 077, s. 1996
July 25, 1996
Commissioner Ernesto C. Mendiola
Chief Executive Officer
Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board
Property Building, NHA Compound
Elliptical Road cor. Kalayaan Avenue
Diliman, Quezon City
S i r :
This reference to your request for opinion on the queries posed by the Chamber or real State Brokers Association (CREBA), an organization of subdivision and condominium developers, viz:
1. "Whether or not a conversion order from the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) is necessary when the land intended to be converted into residential use is covered by P.D. No. 1517, P.D. No. 399, and Section 8 of R.A. No. 7279;" and
2. "Whether or not lands (irrigated or unirrigated) which were reclassified after 15 June 1988, are automatically removed from the coverage of the agrarian reform."
We regret to have to decline rendition of opinion on the aforesaid queries it appearing that the matter pertains to the jurisdiction of the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR). Pursuant to settled policy and practice, this Department has consistently refrained from expressing its views on matters falling within the primary jurisdiction of another office or agency, such as the DAR. This practice has evolved not only from practical considerations but also out of respect and deference for the competence and expertise of the office having primary jurisdiction to resolve the matter and for its familiarity with the policy repercussions of the resolution of the questions involved (Secretary of Justice Opn. No. 42, s. 1994, citing Opn. No. 156, s. 1993, No. 20, s. 1988 and No. 92, s. 1982).
It is suggested that the matter be taken up with the Department of Agrarian Reform since the resolution of the instant queries involves its jurisdiction over agrarian matters.
Very truly yours,
TEOFISTO T. GUINGONA, JR.