Declaration of Principles and Policies

Topics: Land reform, Agrarian reform, Agusan del Sur Pages: 2 (600 words) Published: February 19, 2013
Some of us here in Congress may have heard of the cancellation of CLOAs in Hacienda Looc, Batangas, Sumilao, Bukidnon and Hacienda Maria, Agusan del Sur. These are only some of the 2,555 cases involving cancellation of EPs and CLOAs which covers 29,682 hectares of land. To be specific, the case of Hacienda Maria in Agusan del Sur involves ninety-four (94) farmers that were already in possession of the land with titles issued more than ten years ago. These titles are now facing cancellation, apparently on the ground that the former Ministry of Agrarian Reform has erroneously covered that piece of land under Presidential Decree No. 27. One of the grounds for cancellation under DAR Administrative Order No. 2, series of 1994 is when “the land is found to be exempted/excluded from P.D. No. 27/E.O. No. 266 or CARP coverage or to be part of the landowner’s retained areas as determined by the Secretary or his authorized representative.” Or the lands voluntarily offered under section 19 of Republic Act No. 6657 but which are found to be outside the coverage of CARP. While the grounds for cancellation of EPs and CLOAs under DAR AO No. 2, series of 1994 are generally valid, setting a prescriptive period for the cancellation of EPs and CLOAs is in order. Truly, it is the height of callousness to cancel EPs or CLOAs of farmer beneficiaries who have been, for years, diligently amortizing payments to their lands. With regard to DAR AO No. 3, series of 1996, it would also be unjust that farmer beneficiaries be made to suffer in a fault they did not have any part of. In awarding parcels of land to farmer beneficiaries, it is the DAR that negotiates with the landowners and farmer beneficiaries. The latter two parties do not have direct negotiation with each other except if the land will be under the direct payment scheme. In addition, it is the government and not the farmer beneficiaries that determines which lands would be covered by land reform. The farmer’s participation only...
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