Nine law student practitioners of the University of Negros Occidental Recoletos Bacolod who undergo the Clinical Legal Education Program (CLEP) conducted a seminar with the Barangay Officials of Barangay Montevista, Bacolod City about the roles, procedures, and jurisdiction of the Barangay particularly on the Barangay Conciliation.
These barangay officials some, of whom have served as Lupong Tagapamayapa (Pacification Committees), welcomed the conduct of the seminar and orientation conducted by these law student practitioners namely Lea Joy Hiponia, Yves Dreyfus, Zahara Nica Ojoy, Carlo Marañon, Sheena Ecilla, Jared Lagahit, EJ Gwynn Bonghanoy, Cathy Cinco, Janica Divinagracia with the presence of CLEP Supervisor Atty. Aileen Alagban and with the authority and guidance of UNO-R School of Law Dean Dodie Turla.
The barangay is always the venue for domestic disputes of some of their constituents and it was an opportunity to learn further about the Katarungang Pambarangay; Mediation; Conciliation; Arbitration; Common Brgy disputes; Jurisdiction of Barangay and the Ministerial duty to issue Certificate to File Action.
Montevista Punong Barangay Glo Ann Tambasen said that the seminar and orientation were timely particularly in the Katarungang Barangay since her assumption to office last year, between October and November, there was a need to reconstitute the Lupong Tagapamayapa. And such seminar was important to enhance the learnings of the Lupon and to be competent in handling barangay disputes.”
She added that at least, they now know the extent of the jurisdiction of the barangay insofar as conciliation is concerned particularly on disputes that even big amounts of the claim of money amounting to P2 million is cognizable with the Barangay as long as the parties agreed to submit themselves to the jurisdiction of the barangay.”
It was also reiterated that the certificate to file action is purely ministerial on the part of the barangay and such, and under certain circumstances, it should be given if no agreement had been reached between warring parties.
The CLEP law student practitioners were also fulfilled to impart knowledge and understanding that they have learned in school to the said village leaders about the Barangay Conciliation process and proceedings to those village leaders who are on the frontline of various domestic disputes among residents, families, neighbors, and others in the said barangay which could guide them as they perform their respective task as elected leaders of the barangays.
They also thanked them for their time that gave the said law student practitioners actual exposure to some real situations and experiences that they have encountered and will be encountering each day as they lead the said barangay.
They hope that more seminars and partnerships with the UNOR School of Law will come, making them more competent public servants in their village and community.*