Category Archives: Land Use

Asia Land Forum: Shaping land agenda and defining land rights to achieve food sovereignty

Participants of the Asia Land Forum.

Participants of the Asia Land Forum.

The Asia Land Forum was held on 5 September 2016 in Ortigas Center, Quezon City, Philippines. Divided into two parts, the Forum engaged the Philippine Government on the proposed legislative land agenda of the CSO members of the International Land Coalition (ILC), and provided space for knowledge exchanges on achieving food sovereignty through advancing land rights. Around 85 participants from the Governments of Philippines, Nepal, and Cambodia; intergovernmental organizations (ADB, FAO, IFAD, WB); CSO representatives from Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Mongolia, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines and Thailand  took part in the discussion.

The morning session on “Shaping the Land Agenda in the Philippines” pressed on the land agenda for the Duterte Adiministration under the framework of land rights as human rights. Philippine CSO members of ILC demanded for the passage of the (i) Completion of Notice of Coverage Bill or the NOC Bill, (ii) Indigenous Community Conservation Area (ICCA) Bill, and (iii) the National Land Use Act (NLUA) Bill, collectively called as the “Triple Land Rights Bills,” to effectively address land rights issues that affects the lives of marginalized sectors such as indigenous peoples, farmers and fisher folks as well as the urban poor communities.

Wilson Requez of the People’s Campaign for Agrarian Reform Network, Inc. (AR Now!) discussed that more than 69,000 hectares (ha) of landholdings are yet to be covered for redistribution (DAR Status Report, 2016) under the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP). With the failure to pass the NOC Bill on completing the land acquisition and distribution provision of the CARP during the 16th Congress, it is hoped that in this 17th Congress, the Bill will be passed as the legislative champions for agrarian reforms both in the Lower and Upper Housed have already filed bills for the Completion of Notice of Coverage and are hoping to sustain the momentum it gained during the 16th Congress.

Dave de Vera of the Philippine Association for Intercultural Development (PAFID) highlighted the importance of ICCAs in conserving indigenous people (IP)’s lives and source of livelihood leading to biodiversity conservation. Hence, the passage of the ICCA Bill will further strengthen the mandate of the Indigenous Peoples’ Rights Act (IPRA) and will highlight the very important role of IPs in the conservation of our remaining resources.

Lastly, Elmer Mercado, EnP of the Campaign for Land Use Policy Now! (CLUP Now!) stressed that a clear land use policy through the NLUA should be passed to rationalize the use of lands and address the current degradation of country’s land resources.

Representative Teddy Baguilat  committed to support the passage of these Bills in the current Congress.

During the afternoon session on “Realizing the sustainable development goals: Defending land rights of communities to achieve food sovereignty in the region,” participants discussed the food security priorities of international organizations and selected Asian countries and sustainable development goals in the context of hunger and land rights.

Fifty-two representatives of grassroots organizations, peoples’ movements and CSOs from 10 Asian countries signed the Quezon City Declaration on Food Sovereignty calling upon concerned States, institutions, and corporations to respect and adhere to the 12 principles of the Declaration on protecting and strengthening land rights towards food sovereignty. See Declaration here.

The Asian NGO Coalition for Agrarian Reform and Rural Development (ANGOC), the International Land Coalition (ILC), the GIZ, and the Philippine Development Forum-Working Group on Sustainable Rural Development Forum (PDF-SRD), in partnership with AFA, AR NOW!, CARRD, PAKISAMA, PAFID, TFM and XSF organized this event.

Peter Hauschnik of GIZ opening the Forum

Peter Hauschnik of GIZ opening the Forum

 

img_2625

ANGOC Chairperson Emeritus Fr. Francis Lucas opening the Forum.

 

img_2640

Representative Teddy Baguilat giving his reaction to the presentation on the proposed NOC Bill,

Highlighting land tenure security in drafting the New Urban Agenda for Habitat III

Panel during the side event on Land and Housing at the Core of the New Habitat Agenda. Photo by Habitat International Coalition.

Panel during the side event on Land and Housing at the Core of the New Habitat Agenda. Photo by Habitat International Coalition.

During the third and Preparatory Committee session for the Third United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development or Habitat III in Surabaya, Indonesia on 27 July 2016, the Global Land Tool Network (GLTN) in collaboration with UN-Habitat, Huairou Commission, Habitat for Humanity International, Landesa, Habitat International Coalition (HIC), and the Asian NGO Coalition for Agrarian Reform and Rural Development (ANGOC) hosted a side event on Land and Housing at the Core of the New Habitat Agenda: Recommendations and Key Messages.

The side event aimed to analyze the centrality of ensuring tenure security and rights to adequate and affordable land and housing for the success of the New Habitat Agenda, and describe good practices, tools and links to policy instruments that promote secure tenure for all and responsible land governance.

Recognizing that land is a key driver to urban and rural development, speakers have highlighted the importance of securing land tenure rights for all to enhance resilience to the impacts of climate change, mediating competing interests, while ensuring transparency and accountability. Discussed as well are the importance of land use planning in ensuring sustainable and safe cities and human settlements; and women’s access, ownership, inheritance, and control over land in transforming their wellbeing, economic and social status, resilience to disaster and climate threats, and for the development of the community and society.

ANGOC Executive Director Nathaniel Don Marquez has presented the works of the Land Watch Asia (LWA) Campaign during the session on “Sustainable Land use and responsible land governance.”

Discussions in this side event will be an input to the drafting the New Urban Agenda which will be announced during the Habitat III Conference on 17-20 October in Quito, Ecuador.

Cambodian CSOs visit the Philippines

To learn about the land and housing laws, and the strategies of the CSO in ensuring the access of resource rights among the sectors, the NGO Forum on Cambodia (NGOF) organized the Learning Visit on Land and Housing Rights in the Philippines on 26-28 July 2016. Representatives from Sahmakum Teang Tnaut (STT), Focus on the Global South, Equitable Cambodia (EC), and Community Legal Education Center (CLEC), and ADHOC Cambodia also took part in the study tour.

Hosted by ANGOC, the first day focused on the Philippine land laws and the strategies and experiences of CSOs in pursuing their advocacies on agrarian reform and land use. While Philippines has many asset reform laws rooting to the Philippine Constitution of 1987, they are highly sectoral in approach; thus overlapping provisions and jurisdictions persist in the country resulting to resource conflicts among different sectors. Hence, the Philippine CSOs push for the passage of the National Land Use Act (NLUA) Bill. CSOs and advocacy groups who presented their advocacy experiences were The People’s Campaign for Agrarian Reform Network Incorporated (AR Now!), Center for Agrarian Reform and Rural Development (CARRD), and Campaign for Land Use Policy Now! (CLUP Now!).

On the second day, Cambodian CSOs visited the Community Organizers Multiversity (COM) office to hear about the Urban Development and Housing Act (UDHA) as the main Philippine law on urban housing. They have also learned the initiatives COM conducts to ensure proper implementation of the said law. They have visited a site where an urban housing project is being implemented in Manggahan, Pasig City to learn the experiences and struggles of the Alliance of People’s Organization along Manggahan Floodway Pasig (APOAMF) in successfully fighting for their right to live within city through a near-city housing relocation site project which they, themselves, have developed and proposed to the Government.

Lastly, the Cambodian CSOs visited and learned from the Pastolan indigenous community in Hermosa, Bataan, who have successfully claimed their ancestral domain title with the support of the Philippine Association for Intercultural Development (PAFID). Visitors have also learned how the government and the indigenous community have sustained a harmonious relationship to one another in a dialogue with the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA).

Cambodian CSO representatives with the ANGOC Chairperson Emeritus Fr. Francis Lucas.

Cambodian CSO representatives with the ANGOC Chairperson Emeritus Fr. Francis Lucas.

Dr. Ear Chong of NGOF (right most) presenting an overview of land situation in Cambodia.

Dr. Ear Chong of NGOF (right most) presenting an overview of land situation in Cambodia.

Cambodian CSO representatives with the community people and urban housing project construction.

Cambodian CSO representatives with the community people and urban housing project construction.

Indigenous people's representative "Ka Bonnie" showing the map of their ancestral domain territory.

Indigenous people’s representative “Ka” Bonnie showing the map of their ancestral domain territory.

Indigenous people's representative addressing the questions of the Cambodian CSO representatives.

Indigenous people’s representative “Ka” Linda addressing the questions of the Cambodian CSO representatives.

Cambodian CSO representatives learning about the experiences of indigenous peoples in claiming their ancestral domain title.

Cambodian CSO representatives learning about the experiences of indigenous peoples in claiming their ancestral domain title.

ALRD conducts training on land use policy and agricultural land protection

We are posting this update shared by the Association for Land Reform and Development (ALRD).

Participants of the workshop. Photo by ALRD.

Participants of the workshop. Photo by ALRD.

ALRD conducted a training on “Land Use Policy and Protection of Agricultural Land” on 26-28 April 2016 to raise awareness of farmers on protecting their agricultural lands.

Twenty-six partner organization representatives participated in the training to learn concepts of land reform and its processes, and the policies on land. The discussions particularly include:

  • concept of land reform and the historical evolution of land management;
  • Land reform Ordinance 1972 and 1984;
  • governance practice in khas land and wetland leasing policy;
  • land registration;
  • mutation and tax;
  • Vested Property Act;
  • Proposed Land Use Policy and Protection of Agricultural Land Act;
  • Concept of land survey and its importance to land management;
  • aggression on agricultural land;
  • food security; among others.

This training has also engaged government representatives from Land Record and Survey Department of the Ministry of Land, NGO Affairs Bureau of Bangladesh, and a District Commissioner as resource persons.

This event was supported by the International Land Coalition (ILC).

NES Cambodia Consultative Meeting

We are posting this news shared by STAR Kampuchea.

STAR Kampuchea together with other International Land Coalition – National Engagement Strategy (ILC NES) members and relevant stakeholders conducted a consultative meeting on land and agriculture land use in Phnom Penh.

The meeting aimed to:

  1. discuss progress and challenges of land governance in Cambodia;
  2. discuss agricultural land use and management; and
  3. discuss progress and challenges of NES project and planning for 2016-2018

The meeting concluded with the following agreements:

  1. bring the draft law on Agricultural Land Use and Management for consultation; and
  2. develop NES Cambodia Plan for 2016-2018

Philippines: Advocates demand release of National Land Use Act committee report

We are sharing this press release posted in the Campaign for Land Use Policy Now! (CLUP Now!) Network Facebook page on 29 September 2015.

Land use advocates amassed in the Senate to demand the release of NLUA committee report.  Photo by CLUP Now!

Land use advocates amassed in the Senate to demand the release of NLUA committee report.
Photo by CLUP Now!

While it has been more than a year since the National Land Use Act (NLUA) was passed in the House of Representatives (Lower House) in June 2014, the reading on the Senate (Upper House) floor has not been started to date. This is due to the pending committee report left unreleased by the Committee on Environment and Natural Resources, where the Bill is lodged.

With this, the CLUP Now! Network, together with farmers and fisherfolks, amassed in the Senate on 29 September to urge Committee Chairman Senator Chiz Escudero to release the NLUA committee report.

Land use advocates stressed the importance of the Bill to the changing climate, as the Philippines, has already been experiencing its adverse effects. “Congress needs to act urgently to deliberate on the NLUA bill which is a concrete response to climate change adaptation and protection of our life-support systems,” says Dinagat Island Rep. Kaka Bag-ao, principal author of the NLUA in the Lower House.

Calling for the immediate passage of the NLUA Bill in the Senate

While President Aquino III failed to mention the National Land Use Act (NLUA) Bill as one of his priority bills during his last State of the Nation Address (SONA), NLUA advocates see hope as Senate President Franklin Drilon announces NLUA as a priority bill in the Senate after a closed-door meeting of Senators on 3 August (see news post here).

Land use advocates calling for the immediate passage of the NLUA Bill in the Senate. Photo by CLUP Now!

Land use advocates calling for the immediate passage of the NLUA Bill in the Senate.
Photo by CLUP Now!

On this note, the Campaign for Land Use Policy Now! organized a mobilization on 25 August at the Senate to demand for Senator Drilon to pass NLUA immediately and avoid repeating his predecessor’s move to block the bill’s passage last Congress.

And with the shuffling of chairmanship of the Environment and Natural Resources Committee, where the NLUA Bill is lodged in, advocates hope that this major change in the Committee’s leadership will not hinder the passage of the Bill.

Philippines: Advocates march for the “Green Bills”

Environmental advocates, including the youth, marched for the passage of the Green Bills. Photo by CLUP Now!

Environmental advocates, including the youth, marched for the passage of the Green Bills.
Photo by CLUP Now!

More than 700 environmental activists marched around the Quezon Memorial Circle on 25 July to urge legislators and political leaders to fast track the enactment of the National Land Use Act (NLUA), Forest Resource Bill (FRB), and Alternative Minerals Management Bill (AMMB) – collectively known as the Green Bills. These environmental bills include provisions on the proper use of resources, particularly on land and forest.

The march preceded activities showcasing the importance of these bills through Forest Food Fair, quiz contests, art exhibts, and cosplays.

As a pre-State of the Nation Address (SONA) march, it called for the inclusion of the bills in President Benigno Aquino III’s final SONA on 27 July. Sadly, none of the bills were mentioned during the speech.

The march was organized by Haribon Foundation, Alyansa Tigil Mina (ATM), SOS-Yamang Bayan Network, Foundation for the Philippine Environment (FPE), and Campaign for Land Use Policy Now! (CLUP Now!) Network.

Read the press release here.

Photo exhibit on land use in the Philippines

"YUTA: Limitadong Kabtangan" photo exhibit. Photo by CLUP Now! Network

“YUTA: Limitadong Kabtangan” photo exhibit.
Photo by CLUP Now! Network

The Campaign for Land Use Policy Now! Network (CLUP Now!) and the Office of Senator Loren Legarda on 10-17 December at the Philippine Senate. The photo exhibit, “YUTA: Limitadong Kabtangan” was a public awareness strategy demonstrating the impacts of inappropriate land use in the Philippines and the urgency for the passage of the National Land Use Act (NLUA) through photographs. Photos were selected from the photo contest, National Land Use Act: A Safer Future For All Of Us prior to the exhibit. The photos highlighted the effects of proper and improper use of land, impacts of disasters and climate change, food insecurity, sustainability and the need for a rational National Land Use Act.

Senator Loren Legarda, the Chair of the Committee on Environment and Natural Resources, officially opened the exhibit and delivered a speech stressing the need for the passage of the bill. Other legislators were also at the event to show their support.

ANGOC was a co-organizer.

For more information, visit CLUP Now!’s Facebook page.

VGGT Publications: Now Online!

We are happy to share ANGOC’s three new publications under the Voluntary Guidelines on the Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries, and Forests (VGGT) project; prepared to identify the existing gaps in policies and programs on the governance of land and resource tenure in the Philippines, and to familiarize stakeholders on the VGGT:

VGGT and NLUAThe Voluntary Guidelines on the Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries, and Forests in the context of National Food Security (VGGT) and the Proposed National Land Use and Management Act (NLUA)

This discussion paper analyzed to what extent the salient principles and recommendations of the VGGT are substantially reflected in the NLUA (House Bill 108). With the NLUA in place, this study concluded that policies and planning standards, with the integration of tenure rights, will be applied consistently.

VGGT and land lawsReview of Selected Land Laws and the Governance of Tenure in the Philippines: Discussion Paper in the context of the Voluntary Guidelines on the Governance of Tenure (VGGT)

This paper examines Philippine policies on land and resource tenure as embodied in the 1987 Constitution and ten major laws on tenure, and then analyzes these policies in comparison to the Voluntary Guidelines, in order to identify areas of policy convergence, divergence and gaps.

VGGT and raiPrinciples of responsible agricultural investments: Philippines’ Multi-stakeholders Input to Committee on World Food Security

This discussion paper has been prepared to tackle the challenges underpinning investments in agriculture, which impact on food security and tenure rights of the poor. The paper concludes with a set of recommended principles on responsible investments, considered as part of the inputs of thePhilippine government to the ongoing CFS-initiated global consultation on rai.