A pastor prevailed in court against a church that tried to reclaim four parcels of land in Palawan that it had allegedly donated to him 30 years ago.

The Supreme Court (SC) upheld the Court of Appeals (CA), affirming the dismissal of the case filed by Puerto Princesa Baptist Church Inc. (PPBCI) against Pastor Agustin Tablazon.

In 1980, Tablazon asked his nephew and successor, Pastor Ariel Macolor, to sign a prepared deed of donation, which indicated PPBCI would donate the property to the Palawan Christian Student Center (PCSC).

Macolor signed the deed of donation for PPBCI while Tablazon signed for PCSC in his capacity as chair of the board of trustees.

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Thirty-four years later, Macolor said the PPBCI did not agree to the transaction and that he merely affixed his signature on the prepared document, which he was not aware was a deed of donation.

Tablazon refused to surrender the titles upon demand by PPBCI, prompting the filing of a complaint for the revocation of the donation.

The suit was dismissed on January 4, 2017, by the Palawan Regional Trial Court Branch 48, citing that the complaint failed to implement the PCSC as a party.

Upon the termination of PCSC’s corporate existence, the complaint for revocation should have named the members of the defunct organization where the properties ended up.

The SC said while PPBCI could have asked the court to include the said parties instead of dismissing the case, it did not do so.

The lower court also pointed out that under the rules, written contracts such as the deed of donation must be brought within 10 years but PPBCI filed the complaint more than 35 years after execution. (PNA)

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