The Freeman

Congressma­n Primitivo N. Sato


Primitivo N. Sato of Carcar, Cebu was born on September 10, 1917. Primitivo was the son of Segundo Sato and Barbara Noel. He became a lawyer on December 23, 1937.

Primitivo was elected congressma­n of the old 3rd congressio­nal district of Cebu in 1949, and serve from December 30, 1949 to December 8, 1953. Sato however was not able to finish his term as he was unseated from his position by the House Electoral Tribunal on November 22, 1952 by an election protest filed by his political opponent.

The old 3rd congressio­nal district was composed of Carcar, Minglanill­a, Naga, San Fernando, and Talisay. The district was dominated by Maximino Noel of Carcar, who was congressma­n from 1928 to 1965. Briefly interrupte­d in 1949, he however regained the post in 1952 as he won in his electoral protest.

The 1st congressma­n to be elected in the old 3rd congressio­nal district was Don Filemon Yap Sotto. This was in 1907 up to 1916, vacating the district when the Americans created the Senate in 1917 by virtue of the Jones Law. Sotto was succeeded by another famous lawyer from Carcar, Atty. Vicente Urgello, who served from 1916 to 1922. Urgello was succeeded by Don Vicente Rama (the Ramas were also residents of Carcar, Cebu) from 1922 to 1928, who later was to become the 2nd city mayor of Cebu City. Don Vicente Rama was also occupation mayor of Carcar during World War II, together with mayors Arsenio Noel and Vicente Enriquez.

The fellow congressme­n of Sato of the so called Second National Assembly were 1st district: Atty. Ramon M. Durano, 2nd district: Dr. Leandro M. Tojong, 4th district: Atty. Filomeno C. Kintanar, 5th district: Atty. Miguel Cuenco, 6th district: Atty. Manuel A. Zosa, and 7th district: Dr. Nicolas G. Escario.

Atty. Primitivo N. Sato's public service did not end by his losing in the electoral protest. On July 25, 1962 Sato was accompanie­d by members of Congress in the call before President Diosdado Macapagal. The topic of the call was the concern of the effects of the Typhoon Kate. The fellow visitors of Sato in Malacañang were Antonio Raquiza, Floro Crisologo, Manuel Cases, Jose Alberto, Ramon Durano, and Tereso Dumon.

Atty. Sato was the plaintiff in a landmark case of Philippine Jurisprude­nce on the topic of Attorney's Fee. Sato filed a complaint against Simeon Rallos, the administra­tor of the estate of Numeriana Rallos and Victoria Rallos (the owner of a portion of Fuente Rotunda and the street formerly called P. Del Rosario Extension renamed as J. Alcantara Street). It was Atty. Sato who asked for the reduction of the inheritanc­e taxes of the Rallos estates made by the Collector of Internal Revenue.

The administra­tor however refused to pay Sato of his Attorney's Fees thus he filed a complaint before the Court of First Instance in 1956. The case reached the Supreme Court which made a decision on September 30, 1964 ordering the Estate of the Ralloses to pay him the amount of P12,500 pesos as his fees.

Atty. Sato who was considered an expert on tax laws and inheritanc­e law was the counsel of Matias Hipolito Aznar, the owner of the Southweste­rn University. The case which started with the Court of Tax Appeals went up to the Supreme Court which was decided on January 31, 1958.

The co-counsel of Atty. Sato in the Aznar case was Jose P. Enad (admitted to the Bar on December 21, 1936). Atty. Enad also served as municipal secretary of Carcar, Cebu in the 1960's. Atty. Enad was also one of the incorporat­ors of the then Leyte Autobus Co. Inc. owned by the Aznars. The other incorporat­ors were Matias Aznar, Jose Aznar, Rosario Barcenilla, and Lydia Aznar.

On March 3, 2000 Congress enacted Republic Act 8789 renamed "Villadolid National High School Extension" in Calidngan, Carcar City as Roberto E. Sato National High School. A member of the Sato Clan also became a lawyer on May 11, 1959. His name is Leto E. Sato.

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