In its Resolution, dated 15 November 2000, this Court denied the Petition for Review on Certiorari
submitted by the Commissioner of Internal Revenue for failure to show any reversible error, as well as for non-compliance with the procedural requirement of verification provided in Section 4, Rule 7, of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure, and because the appeal was not pursued by the Solicitor General. When the motion for reconsideration filed by petitioner was likewise denied, petitioner filed the instant motion seeking an elucidation on the supposed discrepancy between the pronouncement of this Court, on the one hand, that requires the participation of the Office of the Solicitor General and pertinent provisions of the Tax Code, on the other hand, that allow the legal officers of the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) to institute judicial action in behalf of the Government, anchoring its argument on Section 220 of the Tax Reform Act of 1997 (R.A. 8424 effective 01 January 1998). —chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary
"SECTION 220. Form and Mode of Proceeding in Actions Arising under this Code. — Civil and criminal actions and proceedings instituted in behalf of the Government under the authority of this Code or other law enforced by the Bureau of Internal Revenue shall be brought in the name of the Government of the Philippines and shall be conducted by legal officers of the Bureau of Internal Revenue but not civil or criminal action for the recovery of taxes or the enforcement of any fine, penalty or forfeiture under this Code shall be filed in court without the approval of the Commissioner."cralaw virtua1aw library
An appeal, however, is not a matter of right; to permit such a recourse, it is essential that the rules set therefor are duly observed. Section 22, Rule 3, of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure provides:jgc:chanrobles.com.ph
"SECTION 22. Notice to the Solicitor General. — In any action involving the validity of any treaty, law, ordinance, executive order, presidential decree, rules or regulations, the court, in its discretion, may require the appearance of the Solicitor General who may be heard in person or through a representative duly designated by him."cralaw virtua1aw library
The power to promulgate rules concerning pleading, practice and procedure in all courts, 1 is a province inherent upon the Supreme Court and recognized as such in the 1987 Constitution which mandates the tribunal to adopt a general, complete and comprehensive system of procedure. 2
The Solicitor General, being the principal law officer and legal defender of the movement, its agencies and instrumentalities, 3 is aptly the office that can bring a case on appeal to the Court of Appeals or the Supreme Court. The rule also finds justification in Section 35, Chapter 12, Title III, of the Philippine Administrative Code which outlines the parameters of the functions of the Office of the Solicitor General, including, but not limited to, its duty to —chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary
"(1) Represent the Government in the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeals in all criminal proceedings; represent the Government and its officers in the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeals, and all other courts or tribunals in all civil actions and special proceedings in which the Government or any officer thereof in his official capacity is a private party.
"x x x
"(3) Appear in any court in any action involving the validity of any treaty, law, executive order or proclamation, rule or regulation when in his judgment, his intervention is necessary or when requested by the Court."cralaw virtua1aw library
The present controversy ruminate upon the singular issue of whether or not Revenue Regulation 1767 issued by petitioner, in relation to Section 137 of the Internal Revenue Code in the imposition of a tax on stemmed-leaf tobacco, deviated from the Tax Code. This question basically inquires into whether the revenue regulation has exceeded, on constitutional grounds, the allowable limits of legislative delegation.chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary
WHEREFORE, the Court reiterates its denial with finality of the petition.
Melo, Panganiban, Gonzaga-Reyes and Sandoval-Gutierrez, JJ.
1. See Section 5 (5), Article VIII, 1987 Constitution.
2. Bustos v. Lucero, 81 Phil. 642.
3. Gonzales v. Chavez, 205 SCRA 816; Republic v. Court of Appeals, 200 SCRA 226.