By Juan Escandor Jr.
NAGA CITY---With an heirship case finally decided by the Supreme Court on Jan. 11, 2011, the descendants of a Spanish official in the 1800s try to assert their claim on some 117 ha of real estate in this city where hundreds of private and public entities have established ownership and propriety to date.
In a press conference held on Monday (June 26), the heirs of Hermogenes Rodriguez called on the present property owners to coordinate with them to correct their land titles. The 117 ha they claim are located in Triangulo, Concepcion Pequeña and other barangays in this city.
The real estate the heirs of Rodriguez claim are now
occupied by thousands of residents, business establishments like the SM mall and government-owned properties and buildings.
But Rene Rodriguez, one of the heirs of the Rodriguez estate, clarified that they have no plans to evict property owners inside the 117 ha they claimed.
“We are doing this (the press conference) to inform the public the proper way to address the problem in their property titles. Most of the titles of properties in our claim are derived from decrees from other places like Caramoan,” Rodriguez said.
He said they wanted to help the present property owners correct the existing titles in their possession by using the documents of the Rodriguez family.
But Rodriguez did not specify what process the present title holders will undergo except that they must coordinate and approach the Rodriguez family.
The claim of the Rodriguez family stemmed from the decision of the heirship case of Regional Trial Court Branch 34 in Iriga City filed in 1989.
Rodriguez said the heirship case lasted for 27 years until the Supreme Court decided with finality the settlement that the descendants of Don Hermogenes Rodriguez and Antonio Rodriguez are the rightful heirs of vast properties under Royal Decree No. 01-4 issued by Queen Isabela II of Spain in 1826.
Don Hermogenes Rodriguez, Gobernadorcillo of Manila, was unmaried and had no children, so that descendants of his brother Antonio, married and bore two children, became the rightful heirs.
Based on the decision of the Supreme Court, the great grandson of Antonio, in the person of Henry F. Rodriguez, was assigned heir-estate administrator.
The 117 ha claimed by the Rodriguez family in Naga City is one of the vast properties under the Royal Decree that included properties in Antipolo, Muntinlupa, Pasay, Parañaque, Marikina, Baguio, Angeles, San Fernando, Manila and Quezon and the provinces of Laguna, Rizal, Cavite, Bulacan, Pampanga, Nueva Ecija, Bataan, Zambales and Batangas.
According to the information sheet distributed to the media, the Rodriguez family’s claim is based on the principle that “the Royal Drecree No. 01-4 is proven to be imprescriptible, remain valid forever in the Philippines, existing and exempted from the Law of Prescription and Laches.”
As estate administrator, Henry R. Rodriguez is authorized to sell, dispose and recover all the real properties included in the judicial inventories, issued by the Supreme Court.
Likewise, he is also authorized to fence, conduct relocation survey, segregation and re-titling; and execute said acts in order to perfect the imperfect title in favor of Rodriquez estate.