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MANILA, Philippines - Four sugar estates in Negros Occidental have been acquired

and distributed by the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) to 244 farmer-


The almost 500-hectares of property are located in the cities of Cadiz and Sagay.

The biggest landholding distributed was the Hacienda Cana-an in Barangay Mabini,
Cadiz City, which covers 386.85 hectares. Of the total area, 352 hectares were divided
among the farmer-beneficiaries. The rest were retained to the owners.

DAR assistant secretary for field operations Teofilo Inocencio said each of the 123
farmer-beneficiaries in Hacienda Cana-an were given almost three hectares of farm

The beneficiaries belong to four farmers groups, including the Task Force Mapalad
and Katarungan.

We hope this level of cooperation among stakeholders in the agrarian reform program
will help fast-track CARP (Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program)
implementation in Negros Occidental and be replicated in other parts of the country,
Inocencio said.

The DAR official said the installations were meant to assist farm worker-beneficiaries
in identifying and occupying their CARP-awarded lands.

Installation is crucial only in areas where tension may arise between previous
landowners and qualified beneficiaries, as well as among farm workers who are
affiliated with different farmers organizations.

In most part of the country, the beneficiaries given Certificates of Land Ownership
Awards (CLOAs) to assume possession of the land without the need of installation.
We only resort to installation to prevent the possible outbreak of violence as a result
of the land distribution, he said.

As of January, there were still 93,000 landholdings covering 870,000 hectares that
remain undistributed under the agrarian reform program.


L and in four big haciendas in Negros Occidental province covering almost 500
hectares has been distributed to 270 sugar farmers under the country’s Comprehensive
Agrarian Reform Program (CARP), officials of the Department of Agrarian Reform
(DAR) said on Friday.

In a news release, DAR said it had finished installing the farmers in the four sugar
estates in the cities of Cadiz and Sagay in Negros Occidental.

T he biggest landholding distributed to farmers was that of Hacienda Cana-an in

Barangay Mabini, Cadiz City, with a total area of 386.85 hectares, of which 352
hectares were covered by CARP. The rest of the land was composed of the retention
area for the landowner, as well as roads and eroded portions excluded from agrarian

Five hectares max

Under the law, a landowner may retain only a maximum five hectares of land.

The three other estates portioned out to farmers were Hacienda Vicente, with 26.7
hectares distributed, Hacienda Susan, with 37.7 hectares, and the 50-hectare Hacienda
Rosemarie, all in Sagay City.

DAR Assistant Secretary for Field Operations Teofilo Inocencio, who flew in from
Manila to supervise the two-day installation event, explained that the activities were
meant to assist agrarian reform beneficiaries in identifying and occupying their CARP-
awarded lands.

“In most parts of the country, the beneficiaries given certificates of land ownership
awards (CLOAs) assume possession of the land without the need of installation. We
only resort to installation to prevent the possible outbreak of violence as a result of the
land distribution,” Inocencio said.

“In some areas, tension is still high between previous landowners and beneficiaries. In
other areas, the tension comes from different farmers’ groups that have conflicting
claims on individual farm lots,” he added.

Unlike rice lands where tenants occupy specific farm lots, Inocencio said that farm
workers in haciendas have no permanent farm lots to claim as their own.

“We (also) embark on installation activities to help farm workers identify the specific
farm lots that they will now own,” the DAR official said.


In its news release, the DAR described the new landowners as erupting in cheers and
shedding tears of joy when they were escorted by DAR officials and employees to the
apportioned haciendas on Monday and Tuesday to identify their individual farm lots.

The two-day installation event turned into a “fiesta,” the DAR release said, as the farm
workers celebrated their transformation into land owners by butchering pigs and
chickens and serving them as simple meals shared by the community.

The DAR said it was seeking to distribute all CARP-covered lands before President
Aquino’s term ends in 2016.

As of January, there were still 93,000 landholdings covering 870,000 hectares that
remained undistributed. Of this number, more than 15,558 landholdings covering a
gross area of more than 162,000 hectares have been tagged as “problematic” due to
pending cases or technical problems.

An estimated 175,000 hectares of land are considered retention areas for landowners.

According to DAR, the remaining 694,181 hectares are targeted to be distributed to

agrarian reform beneficiaries within the next three and a half years under the following
schedule: 160,000 hectares in 2013; 240,707 hectares in 2014; 180,707 hectares in
2015, and 112,767 from January to June 2016.
Negros Farmers on Hunger Strike to
Oppose Killings, ‘Criminalization of
Agrarian Struggle’
Farmers and fisherfolk groups in Negros Occidental have been holding protests outside the
capitol to denounce the mounting harassments experienced by Negrense farmers and farm
workers. They also denounce a series of moves by landlords to file common and trivial offenses
against peasants who demand land reform.

CEBU CITY — Farmers and fisherfolk groups in Negros Occidental have been holding protests outside
the capitol to denounce the mounting harassments experienced by Negrense farmers and farm workers.

More than 50 members of the Negros chapters of progressive groups National Federation of Sugar
Workers (NFSW), Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP), Pamalakaya, and Anakpawis Partylist
participated in a protest action beginning Tuesday and to culminate in a program tomorrow, Jan. 22, the
anniversary of the Mendiola Massacre in Manila. The protest also coincided with the holding of the 10-day
national peasant caravan to demand land and justice for the Philippine peasantry.

“We have targeted up to 3,000 Negrenses from different sectors to join us in the final program, but the
date is yet to be finalized,” Isidro Castillo, provincial chairman of NFSW, informed Bulatlat in a phone

Nine of the 50 protesters are on hunger strike, refusing to take any sustenance except for water.

Castillo said that until the provincial government would act on their grievances they will be forced to
continue with the hunger protest.

The protesters are calling for the passage of House Bill 3059 (Genuine Agrarian Reform Bill) principally
authored by the late Anakpawis Partylist representative Crispin Beltran; the end of extrajudicial killings on
the island; and a stop to the criminalization of agrarian cases in the province, particularly those involving
land holdings covered by the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) and its progeny, the
CARP Extension with Reforms (CARPER).

Agrarian Problem, Criminalized

Castillo revealed that in the morning of Tuesday, Jan. 19, Governor Isidro P. Zayco met with leaders of
KMP, Anakpawis, and NFSW to discuss the issues presented by the group.
Castillo said the governor had asked them to submit a list of criminal cases which the group believed to
have taken root from the sugar workers struggle for land, the names of the people who filed the cases
and the respondents.

This, Castillo said, will be used by the Governor to initiate a dialog between the two parties.

As of this writing, the group recorded a total of 374 criminal cases, which it claimed were “baseless,” filed
in the last quarter of 2009 against members of NFSW and KMP.

Of this, 51 are of malicious mischief, 17 for libel, 103 for grave coercion, 17 for unjust vexation, 51 for
usurpation of real property, 31 for forcible entry, 41 robbery in band cases, 52 qualified theft, and 11
ejectment cases.

Presently, 80 individuals have pending warrant of arrests while 13 are already detained in various
detention centers in the province.
This, according to Castillo, reflects how government has reduced the issue of landlessness on the island
to common and trivial offenses.

The properties that prominently figured in the sugar worker’s struggles are Hacienda Clauden in Cadiz
City owned by Renato Lacson; Hacienda San Jose (Cadiz City); Barangay Bug-ang in Toboso where a
certain Rowena Lumayno filed criminal cases against 17 of the groups’ members; Hacienda Filomena,
which implicated 51 workers on different criminal charges; and Hacienda Kalumanggan of Bago City.

Zayco advised the group to file a “petition of recognizance,” which he said he would sign before it is given
to the mayors of the cities and towns where the cases were filed.

Once filed, the governor promised to help in the immediate release of those detained, Castillo said.

The success story of Dalayapan

BACOLOD City – Critics of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) claim that
the government has failed to empower the farmer-beneficiaries.
But for the Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries (ARBs) of the Hacienda Dalayapan in Cadiz City,
Negros Occidental, their situation is ideal in form and in substance.
The Dalapayan ARBs is comprised of 94 beneficiaries who collectively farm and manage the
246-hectare land awarded to them by the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR).
They availed of the Agrarian Productivity Credit Program loan amounting to P6 million which
they used in last year’s cropping. They generated a net profit of P4 million for the 86 hectares
of land they used for sugarcane planting.
“The second loan was already released for this crop year which is bigger as we have
increased the area for sugarcane production,” said Dalayapan ARB Association Chairman
Gilbert Abayon.
Farm manager Manalo Porre said they got a tractor from DAR’s support services eased their
farming operations.
The group has also purchased a second-hand tractor with implements worth P800,000 taken
from their income.
“Each crop year, we set aside P100,000 for hospitalization funds and another P100,000 for
educational fund so that members can borrow money for their children’s education,” Porre
At DAR’s prodding, the group agreed to place their land under the collective farming scheme
which is advantageous as it will mean easier access to loans, services and other livelihood
programs and benefits.
Their expectations were met as they progressed with their operation with assistance from the
Sugar Regulatory Administration for their farm inputs, a crash course on agriculture and
trainings of their children in TESDA-accredited schools.
“We never get hungry anymore as we never run out of work. Work in the farm were run in
rotational scheme,” Abayon said.
Dalayapan’s success did not escape the attention of both the Cadiz City government and the
DAR as it was made a model farm for newly installed beneficiaries.
ARB’s from other areas frequent Dalapayan to study and learn from their success.
To cap their success, Mayor Patrick Escalante facilitied the construction of a farm-to-market
road with help from the World Bank and the provincial government. The project is set to start
next month.
The road project costs P132 million and stretches 13 kilometers from the farm to the national

An agro-eco project is also underway to include other crops, an orchard and an organic
vegetable farm complete with amenities to take advantage of the paved road soon.

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