KATARUNGAN PAMBARANGAY: “INDIRECT CONTEMPT” BRGY. CAPTAIN’s Petition at MTC
Indirect Contempt is a criminal offense, hence, …. “the required
quantum of evidence for conviction should be proof beyond reasonable doubt”
according to the lawyer.
Section 3(f), Rule 71… Failure to obey a subpoena during served is
The offense of Indirect Contempt under the Rules of Court shall be
penalized by a fine of Php 5,000.00 or one (1) month of imprisonment.
The sufficient evidences of Indirect Contempt should be the signed and
authentic KP Form No. 7 which is the Complaint Form; KP Form No. 8 which is the
Notice of Hearing; KP Form No. 9 which is the Summon for the Respondent; KP
Form No. 13 which is the Subpoena Letter; KP Form No. 19 which is the
Certificate to File Action etc…. If all of these signed documents are submitted
to the Honorable Court in the Municipal Trial Court, those are material and
sufficient evidences for Indirect Contempt. If all of these KP Forms issued and
copy-furnished to the respondent, I believe that there is a FAIR DUE PROCESS of
the lower court proceedings in the barangay level. If the respondent does not receive a copy-furnished document , I doubt it.... 'May butas 'yang.!' It is NOT FAIR! A xerox copy would cost only Php 1.00 per copy rather than filing a case at the Municipal Trial Court.
In my common sense, NOTICE OF INVITATION is not a Subpoena which is the
substantial evidence for Indirect Contempt as being stated in Section 3(f),
Rule 71 in the Rules of Court. If the barangay captain/complainant/plaintiff
submitted only NOTICES OF INVITATIONS to the Honorable Court as attachments of
his petition for Indirect Contempt, that is premature…. “It has no valid cause
of action against the defendant by reason of prematurity.” It seems like, in the teaching strategy, this is only Unlocking of Difficulties;
in programming, this is syntax error; and in public office, this is negligence of
OFFICE due to failure of defining, identifying and differentiating between Notice
of Invitation and Subpoena which are the two different KP Forms. if this is the case,
I think, it’s hard to prove the guilt of the defendant beyond reasonable doubt
for the offense of Indirect Contempt.
If Indirect Contempt is filled in the Municipal Trial Court through a unanimously signed barangay resolution, e.g. Barangay Resolution No. 118, series 2013…. Granting Authority and Power to the Punong Barangay of Kalumpang (not the real name) to initiate special court proceedings before the Municipal Trial Court and cause the necessary filing for special cause of action on petition for Indirect Contempt (Under Rule 71, Section 3 of the Rules of Court) as against Mr. Innocencio Nasugoan (Not the real name), All in furtherance of Justice, Fair Play and Moral Ascendancy over the Authority of the Local Governance among the community. And that under paragraph two of its Whereas clauses that states … Whereas, there had been an issue under the Office of the Lupong Tagapamayapa as against Innocencio Nasugoan (Not the real name) form barangay Kalumpang whom had been issuedseries of subpoenasrespectively served on the following dates- November 06, 2013 (for the supposed November 07, 2013 Lupon), November 9, 2013 (for the supposed November 11, 2013 Lupon) and the undated subpoena (for the November 25, 2013 Lupon), the same being within the official capacity to hear issues as brought by one, Mr. So N. So (Not the real name) General Manager of Tubod sa Kalumpang Association, Inc. (Not the real name). But if the Barangay Council submits only NOTICES as evidences, technically the validation and perusal of substantial evidences failed before filing of Indirect Contempt to the Municipal Trial Court. And that would possibly qualify to Gross Negligence of public office. And that is an administrative offense. Why is it Gross Negligence? Remember that the barangay council is composed of seven (7) kagawads and the Barangay Captain as the presiding officer. If it is a unanimously signed barangay resolution, therefore, all kagawads could hardly identify and differentiate Subpoena from what we call NOTICES. Among the seven (7) kagawads including the presiding officer, nobody attempts to disapprove said resolution. That means to say that the entire barangay council does not define the terms “Subpoena” and “Notice of Hearings/Invitations”; and does not validate the substantial evidences for Indirect Contempt. In contradictory, it is very easy to identify what court needs because every Katarungang Pambarangay (KP) form must be labeled with the corresponding terms like, Complaint’s Form, Notice of Hearing, Summons for the Respondent, Subpoena etc. Even the Grade IV pupils can easily identify those KP Forms. If this is the case, all kagawads and the barangay captain are not meticulous of court proceedings in the barangay level, therefore, such technical error would qualify to Gross Negligence of Office considering that the barangay resolution is unanimously signed and submitted before the Municipal Trial Court as attachment A for example.
If Indirect Contempt is totally closed as provided by law in the Mediation Court but the history of barangay officials who have failed to define, to identify, to discuss, to verify, to validate, and to differentiate between the KP forms“Subpoena” and “Notices” which are both different forms is still a tremendous issue.
Here are my humble requests to the barangay council: (1) The barangay should serve Summons to the Respondent with an attachment of the Complaint’s Form signed by the complainant and the brgy. captain which is provided in Section 1(b) (1), Rule 3 of the Rules implementing the Katarungang Pambarangay, the punong barangay should issue summons, not notice of hearing or invitations for dialogue; (2) the barangay should also serve “Subpoena” to the witness and said form must be printed with the statement: Sanctions will be imposed in the event the invited party fails to appear during the date set therein. And the witness must have the copy-purnished documents of Subpoena and Complaint’s Form; (3) The barangay should give the respondent or the witness a chance to explain his/her non-appearance before the barangay may impose legal sanctions which the Rules require; (4) Before the barangay shall file an Indirect Contempt to somebody, under Section 3(f) of Rule 71, Rules of Court, the barangay should first implement Section 8 (a), Rule 6 of the Rules implementing the Katarungang Pambarangay, a respondent’s refusal or willful to appear shall be sufficient basis for the issuance of a certification for filing complainant’s cause of action in court or with proper government agency or office. Such issuance of a certification would stand as proof that the barangay officials concerned had done their duty to assist the parties in settling their disputes amicably; (5) If honorable kagawads would pass a resolution, there should always be a conductof parliamentary procedures including the definition of terms especially when it comes to filing a Special Court Proceedings in the Municipal Trial Court and they must validate their evidences; (6) If the barangay may have to initiate legal action the barangay captain should always refer to a lawyer, not to a police officer; (7) The barangay should always label all KP forms and include the corresponding sanctions/penalty in the Subpoena Form. Let’s make the barangay a constituent friendly Local Government Unit!
If anyboby would insist that the “Notice of Hearing” is “Subpoena”, that is a rare example of Ignorance of the Law.
Well, I am just like a frog of this very wide pond. Koka, kaka….