Blog Archives

Regional Workshop on Land Monitoring Initiatives

ANGOC Chair Emeritus, Fr. Francis Lucas, opening the program.

ANGOC Chair Emeritus, Fr. Francis Lucas, opening the program.

Around forty representatives from CSOs, research institutions, government and international organizations from Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Laos, Myanmar, Nepal,  Philippines and Vietnam met last 21-22 April in Quezon City, Philippines in a 2-day workshop on land monitoring initiatives with the theme, Towards an Accountable Governance on Land.

The workshop was jointly organized by ANGOC, LWA, International Land Coalition (ILC) Asia, and Global Land Tool Network (GLTN).

The workshop aimed to:

  1. present and discuss the country land monitoring reports;
  2. enhance the land monitoring framework in the light of pressing issues and global initiatives (i.e., post-2015 sustainable development goals, Voluntary Guidelines on Responsible governance of Tenure of Land, Forests and Fisheries); and
  3. explore ways forward to continuously build a regional platform for common action towards an accountable and effective governance on land.

On 23 April, LWA members were able to discuss and plan on how to continuously strengthen the campaign towards enhancing capacities of CSOs in partnering with communities in defending their rights to land.

The LWA country member representatives.

The LWA country member representatives.

Presentations may be downloaded here.

Baguilat tells farmers CARP lives on after June 30; but vigilance needed to pass NOC continuation bill

Orders DAR to submit list of Notices of Coverage balance to COCAR immediately

1 July 2014

This is a press release from the Philippine House of Representatives Committee on Agrarian Reform and the Office of Rep. Teddy Brawner Baguilat.

Farmer beneficiaries of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) should not despair because the agrarian reform program continues.

This was the declaration of Ifugao Congressman and House Committee on Agrarian Reform Chair Teddy Brawner Baguilat as misinformation and misinterpretation continue to spread that the CARP ended on June 30.

“Contrary to media reports and misconceptions, only the program’s acquisition and distribution of unacquired and undistributed agricultural lands will end on June 30, 2014 as per Sec. 5 of R.A. 9700, which amended the CARP. Pending cases and proceedings for acquisition and distribution as of June 30 will proceed until finality, based on Sec. 30 of the same law,” Baguilat stressed.

“Unacquired and undistributed lands refer to lands that have not begun with the process of land acquisition and distribution, meaning Notices of Coverage have not been issued. The process of acquisition and distribution starts with the issuance of the NOC. The only thing that stopped on June 30 is the issuance of NOCs stops after June 30, 2014 with the absence of a new law extending the deadline,” Baguilat said.

Baguilat co-authored House Bill 4296 with Coop-NATCCO partylist representative Cresente Paez to propose the extension of NOC issuance to agricultural landholdings not yet placed under the agrarian reform program. Malacanang certified both House and Senate bills as urgent but a law was not passed on the last session days of Congress.

The Congressman reiterates that CARP components aside from land acquisition and distribution, such as support services provision and agrarian justice delivery will continue based on R.A. 6657 as amended by R.A. 9700.

“I assure our farmers who have been identified as CARP beneficiaries with landholdings currently being processed for distribution or have filed cases for petitions for coverage that the Committee on Agrarian Reform will compel DAR to speed up the processing of their titles or acting on their petitions until final distribution,” Baguilat promised.

Congressman Baguilat also called on farmers and advocates to be vigilant and continue to urge Congress and Malacañang to push for the passage of the bills continuing NOC issuance for the sake of farmers whose landholdings were not issued Notices of Coverage or were not able to file Petitions for Coverage on June 30.

Meanwhile, Baguilat called on the DAR to immediately submit to his Committee definitive data on the areas not yet covered by NOCs after June 30, where these lands are located and who are their intended beneficiaries.

“I also urge all officials of DAR, from the Secretary down to the provincial and municipal officers to be steadfast in continuing to implement CARP until finality. Bear in mind that your task as DAR involves more than accomplishing CARP targets but realizing social justice and transforming small farmers from tillers to producer-entrepreneurs,” Baguilat insisted. #

 

Baguilat asserts: It is not the END of CARP on June 30, 2014

Calls on DAR to immediately issue all Notices of Coverage by end of June

24 June 2014

This is a press release from the Philippine House of Representatives Committee on Agrarian Reform and the Office of Rep. Teddy Brawner Baguilat.

“The implementation of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program or CARP as amended WILL CONTINUE after June 30, 2014. CARP lives!” declared Ifugao representative and House Committee on Agrarian Reform Chair Teddy Brawner Baguilat in a Bangsamoro forum yesterday.

“I would like to emphasize to the public that based on Sec. 30 of Republic Act 9700 amending RA 6657, only the issuance of Notices of Coverage (NOCs) by the Department of Agrarian Reform on lands not yet acquired for CARP distribution will stop by July 1, 2014. All other land transfer processes of lands already covered, support services provision and agrarian justice delivery will proceed until finality based on the law,” Baguilat stressed.

NOC issuance starts the process of Land Acquisition and Distribution under the CARP. With the failure of both Houses of Congress to pass a law continuing NOC issuance last June 11, CARP acquisition of lands will stop on July 1.

“However, under Section 30 of RA 9700, any case proceeding which may remain pending on June 30, 2014 shall be allowed to proceed to its finality and be executed beyond such date. Petitions for Coverage from farmers will be considered as ongoing cases,” said Baguilat.

Baguilat co-authored HB 4296 with Coop-NATCCO partylist representative Crescente Paez to propose the extension of NOC issuance to agricultural landholdings not yet placed under the agrarian reform program.

“Malacanang certified the bill as urgent but was still not passed on the last session days due to stiff opposition of representatives from the Visayas and the Makabayan block. But as Chairperson of the House Committee on Agrarian Reform, I am committed to have this bill pass when Congress resumes for the sake of the farmers already awaiting the distribution of those lands,” promised the ifugao solon.

As of May 2014, DAR reported around 5,635 NOCs for 48,344 hectares still need to be prepared while 8,450 NOCs for 40,348 hectares need to be published or delivered to their respective landowners.

“In this regard, I urge DAR Secretary Gil delos Reyes and all DAR personnel to distribute ALL remaining 14,085 NOCs by June 30, 2014. Work triple time if you must. Work hard for the landless farmers who are relying on CARP,” Baguilat appealed.

The House Committee of Agrarian Reform has yet to receive its request from DAR for the latest remaining balance of NOCs still for issuance.

The requested information is needed by the Committee to support HB4296 and Senate Bill 2188 when the second regular session of Congress opens on July 28, 2014 and by the Congressional Oversight Committee on Agrarian Reform (COCAR) in monitoring CARP implementation.

The National Land Use Act: How an urgent bill dies in the Philippines

The Campaign for Land Use Policy Now! (CLUP Now!) and land rights advocates in the Philippines are mourning the missed opportunity at the last session of the 15th Congress to pass the National Land Use Act – or NLUA – which has languished in Congress for the past 20 years. The NLUA, already in its 3rd Reading, was almost passed but was sabotaged by some senators who submitted late amendments.

The National Land Use Act is urgently needed in the country to promote the rational and just allocation and use of the country’s land and natural resources and to harmonize existing land laws. However, resistance to the bill from the real estate sector was too strong.

But the battle is far from over. With the opening of the 16th Congress last 22 July, CLUP Now! commits to once again lobby for the passage of NLUA. CLUP Now! is calling on President Aquino to uphold his commitment to NLUA and proclaim this as a priority bill. ANGOC is a co-convenor of CLUP Now! and will continue to be at the forefront of lobbying for this critical resource management bill.

Read the press release here

Philippine farmers march for land distribution and protection

Farmers and agrarian reform advocates marched around the Quezon City Memorial Circle in the Philippines last 3 June demanding the completion of land distribution under the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program Extension with Reforms (CARPER). Carrying the message “Lupa para sa Magsasaka, Pagkain para sa Lahat” (“Land for the Farmers, Food for All”), farmers gathered in front of the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) to protest against the slow pace of land distribution in the country. The march, organized by the People’s Campaign for Agrarian Reform Network (AR Now!), was followed by a national forum on agrarian reform. DAR undersecretaries gave presentations on the agency’s measures to ensure the completion of land redistribution as well as support services.

Moreover, DAR and AR Now! inked a Memorandum of Understanding to strengthen monitoring of DAR’s performance in achieving land distribution targets. 

Read the original article.

Philippine CSOs dialogue on budget monitoring with Department of Agrarian Reform

Last 11 February, Land Watch Asia – Philippines members: the Center for Agrarian Reform and Rural Development (CARRD), the Philippine Partnership for the Development of Human Resources in Rural Areas (PhilDHRRA), and ANGOC participated in a dialogue on budget monitoring between CSOs and key officials of the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR), including Secretary  Virgillio delos Reyes. DAR initiated the consultation for the preparation of the agency’s 2014 budget proposal, which is a move toward transparency and collaboration.

At the forum, PhilDHRRA’s National Coordinator Divina Lopez asked DAR to specify the entry points for civil society with regard to the agency’s budget monitoring. CARRD’s Executive Director, Edwin Nerva shared findings from their report on agrarian justice delivery, Rationalizing public expenditures in agrarian justice delivery. For example, a major finding was that due to the automatic appropriations of fund savings as year-end financial incentives, provincial staff are more likely to limit their expenses, to the extent that farmers are forced to shoulder expenses in dispute resolution. Mr. Nerva asked how DAR can prevent this issue. Moreover, he asked how the DAR-CSO partnership on budget monitoring can be strengthened. DAR executives responded that issues will be addressed in further consultations with CSOs.

For more information, please read the original article, as well as other CARRD updates here:  

Download CARRD’s publication Rationalizing public expenditures in agrarian justice delivery