SC: Tribal group to keep Boracay land
In a seven-page resolution issued on June 10 and released on Tuesday, the Supreme Court’s (SC) First Division denied the petition for review of the award of the land to the Ati tribal community.
Walter Bollozos/File

SC: Tribal group to keep Boracay land

Evelyn Macairan (The Philippine Star) - August 29, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Ati indigenous community has won its claim over a 25,310-square-meter land in Boracay.

In a seven-page resolution issued on June 10 and released on Tuesday, the Supreme Court’s (SC) First Division denied the petition for review of the award of the land to the Ati tribal community.

The National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP) awarded the land under Resolution 154-2010 AD dated Aug. 3, 2010.

Gregorio Sanson and his wife Ma. Lourdes filed a petition before the Kalibo regional trial court (RTC) for the cancellation of the original certificate of title and certificate of ancestral domain title as well as reconveyance and damages.

The couple claimed the NCIP has no jurisdiction over the case. 

In denying the petition, the high tribunal affirmed a ruling of the Court of Appeals (CA) that the NCIP and not a regular court has exclusive and original jurisdiction over the case.

The high court said the RTC committed grave abuse of discretion when it took cognizance of the case “absent any showing that it had been ruled upon by the NCIP or that the circumstances were present to justify its exception of the doctrine of primary jurisdiction.”

The SC said the Sanson couple should have appealed the NCIP ruling before the CA.

COURT OF APPEALS NATIONAL COMMISSION ON INDIGENOUS PEOPLES
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