PARC Secretariat leads consultation with agrarian cooperatives

news national 2 pix 1 nov. 16 2017GENERAL SANTOS CITY (Nov. 14, 2017)—The Presidential Agrarian Reform Council (PARC) Secretariat is currently conducting a consultation and feedbacking on farmers’ agribusiness venture agreements (AVA) with their respective investors.

The three-day consultation seeks to discuss with agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) the result of the evaluation on their respective AVA contracts.

“Based on the result of the evaluation of their AVAs, we would recommend and suggest to farmers the best options and appropriate directions to take regarding the challenges they are encountering in their contracts,” said PARC Secretariat Director James Arsenio Ponce.

DAR Public Assistance & Media Relations Director Leomides Villareal welcomed the participants consisted of agrarian cooperative officials, regional and provincial AVA point persons, DAR legal officers and DAR support services staff.news national 2 pix 2 nov. 16 2017

Villareal said the DAR’s mandate of giving lands to landless farmers to till. “But giving lands is not enough. The DAR is also conducting activities like these to help farmers understand the business contracts that they have entered into.”

“It is important that ARBs and other stakeholders join hands in scrutinizing these AVAs and ensure that farmers’ rights are not violated. The content of the AVA should be just and beneficial to both parties,” Villareal said. (pinky roque)

Photo 1: Public Assistance & Media Relations Director Leomides Villareal welcomes participants to the consultation and feedbacking on farmers’ agribusiness venture agreements.

Photo 2: PARC Secretariat Director James Arsenio Poncen explains the workshop procedures to participants.

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Farmers attend consultation on agri-business contracts

news national 1 pix 1 nov. 16 2017GENERAL SANTOS CITY (Nov. 16, 2017)—The Presidential Agrarian Reform Council (PARC) Secretariat led a two-day consultation, feedbacking and workshop with agrarian reform beneficiaries’ organizations (ARBOs) involved in agri-business venture agreements (AVA) to guide them in making sound decisions concerning their AVA with their investors.

Undersecretary David Erro said farmers get abused for not understanding what is contained in their AVAs. He said farmers get involved in onerous contracts because they were not properly guided by the laws and processes in negotiating their AVAs.

“Their lack of understanding of the AVA [laws and regulations] always put them in an unfavorable and disadvantageous position,” explains Erro.

“We want the farmers to understand the provisions contained in their contracts by orienting them to the laws and guidelines of AVAs. After hearing their issues and concerns, this consultation would empower them and their cooperatives with the processes and guide them on what options to take in negotiating for their contracts,” Erro said.

The consultation, feedbacking and workshop were conducted after President Rodrigo Roa Duterte, who serves as the chairperson of PARC, directed that all AVA contracts involving tenants and landholders must pass through DAR for evaluation and determine if the AVAs are in violation of the 1987 Constitution as well as of agrarian reform laws, rules and regulations.

Acting on that directive, the PARC Secretariat earlier this year conducted an ARB’s forum on the implementation of AVAs. Agrarian cooperatives were requested to submit their AVA contracts for review and evaluation by the DAR.

PARC Secretariat Director James Arsenio Ponce said after three batches of consultation, feedbacking and workshop, 46 AVA contracts were submitted and evaluated.

“This consultation, feedbacking and workshop is the third activity we handled with ARBOs and agrarian reform beneficiaries after the President made the directive. We presented to them the result of the evaluation of their AVAs submitted in the ARB’s forum. And now after lengthily discussing problems and suggesting possible solutions, they are now armed with enough knowledge to make sound decisions in their AVAs,” Ponce said.

Photo:  DAR Undersecretary David Erro (extreme right) gives recommendations to farmers on how to go about the challeneges they face in their AVAs.

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DAR conducts dialogue to revitalize garlic, onion industry in Ilocos Region

news national 1 pix 1 nov. 13 2017SAN JUAN, La Union – The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) recently presided over a dialogue aimed to revitalize garlic and onion industry in agrarian reform areas in Ilocos Region and to address the production and marketing problems of onion and garlic farmers in the area.

The dialogue was facilitated on Thursday, November 9 in San Juan town in La Union.

Regional Director Virgilio L. Acuna said the dialogue was organized to address the reported deep decline in the domestic production of onions and garlic in the area.

Data provided DAR in the region indicated that the decrease of onion and garlic production in Ilocos Region resulted in the importation of onion and garlic from the other countries.

Acuna said latest numbers showed that 94% of the supply of garlic and 60% of onion in the Philippine market are already imported from the foreign markets.

He also enumerated various problems faced by the onion and garlic industry in the area which includes plant diseases and the lack of quality seedlings which severely reduces the quality and volume of production, the entry of cheap imports and smuggled garlic and onions.

The massive inflow of imported and smuggled onions and garlic to the local markets also dropped the prices of locally produced onions and garlic that eventually incurred losses to the local farmers.

Acuna also took note of the lack of new production technology available to local garlic and onions producers as among the factors of the decline of the production of said farm products.

He added that the dialogue also aimed to directly identify from the farmers their present status and predicaments in the light of the current industry situation.

“From there, we would determine the possible types of assistance that can be provided to the farmers by the government, local government of units and private sectors such as technical assistance, inputs, production and post-harvest facilities, support infrastructures, credit, farm types of machinery and assured market support among others,” Acuna pointed out.

DAR’s Head Executive Assistant Shiela Enciso delivered a message in behalf of OIC Secretary Rosalina Bistoyong that emphasized her support to the onion and garlic industry in the country.

The other factors on the decline of the production of onion in the region were also presented by PARPO II Maria Ana B. Francisco during the dialogue.news national 1 pix 2 nov. 13 2017

These factors, Francisco said include the prolonged rainy seasons during the recent years and the severe attack by a fungus.

Acuna was joined during the dialogue by Congressman DV B. Savellano, DAR Region XI Director Joseph H. Orilla, Vice Governor Aureo Nisce who represented Governor Pacoy Ortega, Benito S. Andaya of the Bureau of Plant Industry, Ruby Ann L. Matutino from the Office of Senator Cynthia A. Villar, PARPO II Christianne Suguitan, PARPO II Vic M. Ines and PARPO II Atty.  Raul C. Laluan.

The activity was participated by farmers from the provinces of Ilocos Norte,  Ilocos Sur, La Union and Pangasinan. 

Photo 1: Regional Director Virgilio L. Acuna together with Congressman DV B. Savellano, DAR HEA Shiela Enciso, DAR Region XI Director Joseph H. Orilla, Vice Governor Aureo Nisce, Benito S. Andaya of the Bureau of Plant Industry, Ruby Ann L. Matutino from the Office of Senator Cynthia A. Villar graced the dialogue on revitalizing garlic and onion industries in agrarian reform areas in Ilocos Region that was held on Thursday, November 9 in San Juan, La Union.

Photo 2: PARPO II Maria Ana B. Francisco of Pangasinan speaks before the agrarian reform beneficiaries emphasizing the province' support to revitalize the onion and garlic industry in agrarian reform areas. The stakeholders' consultation- dialogue was conducted at the Puerto de San Juan in San Juan town, La Union on Thursday, November 9.

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Pres. Duterte wants individual land titles for DAR beneficiaries – Bello

news national 1 pix 1 nov. 10 2017BAGUIO CITY – Aside from the fast-tracking of the processing and the release of certificates of land ownership award (CLOAs) to agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs), President Rodrigo Roa Duterte also mandated the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) to provide the beneficiaries with individual CLOAs.

This was emphasized by DAR Undersecretary for Field Operations Office Karlo S. Bello when he led the second round of distribution of CLOAs to 1,652 ARBs covering a total land area of 937 hectares in the provinces of Abra, Apayao, Benguet, Ifugao, Kalinga and Mt. Province in Cordillera Region.

The second day of CLOA distribution was held on Thursday, November 9 at the Gestdan Centrum in Baguio City. DAR OIC Secretary Rosalina L. Bistoyong facilitated the first day of distribution in the same venue last Wednesday.

“President Duterte wants individual titling of lands for our beneficiaries, not the collective CLOAs,” Bello said.

He added that the President has also mandated DAR to boost the provision of support services to the ARBs to develop the lands awarded to them.

Bello was recently designated by Malacanang as OIC Secretary of the DAR until the return of OIC Secretary Bistoyong from an official trip abroad.

He also recognized the courage of the ARBs especially on their undying determination to win the ownership of the land they till for more than 20 years.

“I am very happy to be part of this event in your lives. You finally own the lands you’ve been waiting for through the years of toiling and taking care of it. Nobody deserves it better than you and you should make it more productive now,” Bello said.

He also lauded the DAR in Cordillera region for their all-out efforts to make the farmers dream into reality.

“DAR is doing its best to deliver the best service to the farmers. We are now gathering farmers’ concerns and issues,” he added.news national 1 pix 2 nov. 10 2017

Among the concerns being considered by DAR include the requirements from the Land Bank of the Philippines, the Register of Deeds, and other government offices involved in lands.

“We are looking at the causes of the delays in the processing and studying effective schemes to smoothen the operations and coordination of various government offices,” Bello said.

Projects that are part of the support services were also handed over to the ARBs during the two-day distribution ceremonies.

DAR Cordillera Regional Director Atty. Marjorie P. Ayson said the projects received by the ARBs include the P240,000.00 worth of six water tank units for the Community –Managed Potable Water Sanitation and Hygiene (CPWASH).

These water-systems, Ayson added, will benefit Naguey Multi-Purpose Cooperative, Bagong Sablan Credit Cooperative and Taloy Norte Farmers Multi-Purpose Cooperative in Benguet province.

ARB cooperatives that include the Atok Arabica Coffee Growers Marketing Cooperative and Tawangan Agrarian Reform Community Multi-Purpose Cooperative in Benguet also received their P900,000 worth of Village Level Processing Center Enhancement Project on Wednesday, she said.

The CLOA distribution on Thursday was also witnessed by Director Leomides R. Villareal of the Public Assistance and Media Relations Service, Director Leandro A. Caymo of the Bureau of Land Tenure Improvement and other top DAR officials in Cordillera Region.

news national 1 pix 3 nov. 10 2017Photo 1: DAR Undersecretary Karlo S. Bello (left) led the second day of CLOA distribution to 1,652 agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) in a ceremony held on Thursday, November 9 at the Gestdan Centrum in Baguio City. Bello was joined by Director Leomides R. Villareal (3rd from right) of the Public Assistance and Media Relations Service, Director Leandro A. Caymo (2nd from right) of the Bureau of Land Tenure Improvement and Regional Director Atty. Marjorie P. Ayson (2nd from left) of DAR Cordillera Region.

Photo 2: DAR Undersecretary Karlo S. Bello led the second day of CLOA distribution to 1,652 agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) in a ceremony held on Thursday, November 9 at the Gestdan Centrum in Baguio City where he also emphasized President Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s mandate to fast-track the process and distribution of individual CLOAs to the beneficiaries.

Photo 3: DAR Undersecretary Karlo S. Bello (4th from right) led the second day of CLOA distribution to 1,652 agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) in a ceremony held on Thursday, November 9 at the Gestdan Centrum in Baguio City. Bello was joined by Director Leomides R. Villareal (3rd from left) of the Public Assistance and Media Relations Service, Director Leandro A. Caymo (2nd from left) of the Bureau of Land Tenure Improvement and Regional Director Atty. Marjorie P. Ayson (3rd from right) of DAR Cordillera Region.

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1,652 farmers receive land titles, support projects in Cordillera Region

news national 1 pix 1 nov. 8 2017BAGUIO CITY – A total of 1,652 agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) from Cordillera Region received their 937 certificates of land ownership award (CLOAs) in a two-day distribution ceremonies led by the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) held at the Gestdan Centrum in Baguio City on November 8 to 9, 2017.

The CLOAs awarded covered a total land area of 937 hectares in the provinces of Abra, Apayao, Benguet, Ifugao, Kalinga and Mt. Province.

DAR has intensified CLOA distribution and the provision of support services to ARBs in the country to support the thrust of the administration of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte to emancipate farmers, especially those in the far-flung villages from poverty.

DAR OIC Secretary Rosalina L. Bistoyong led the first batch of CLOA distribution and the turn-over of support projects to ARBs on Wednesday 

The second day of CLOA distribution and turn-over of support services will be led by Undersecretary Karlo S. Bello.

“We want you to be empowered,” Bistoyong emphasized in his message, reiterating that the administration of Pres. Duterte and the DAR will continue to support the ARBs.

Bistoyong also encouraged the ARBs to fully develop their lands as she recognized the vital role of farmers in securing the food needs of the Filipinos.

“Farmers support the food security of communities and our country,” she said.

Data provided by DAR Cordillera Region Regional Director Atty. Marjorie P. Ayson revealed that 387 ARBs from Mt. Province received their CLOAs covering a total of 45.4614 hectares during the two-day distribution ceremonies; 379 ARBs with 191.9154 hectares from Kalinga; 376 ARBs with 225.4345 hectares from Ifugao; 351 ARBs with 299.0722 hectares from Benguet; 120 ARBs with 134.7007 hectares from Apayao; and 39 ARBs with 40.7926 hectares from Abra.Ayson added that two support projects were also turned-over to ARB organizations and cooperatives on Wednesday.

These projects include the Community-Managed Potable Water Sanitation and Hygiene (CPWASH) worth P240,000 and the Village-Level Processing Center Enhancement Project (VLPCEP) worth P900,000.

The CPWASH will cover three ARB communities consisting of 38 households who are members of three ARB organizations and cooperatives in Benguet.news national 1 pix 2 nov. 8 2017

Part of the CPWASH project is six units of water tanks that will provide safe drinking water to the ARBs in the area.

The VLPCEP project, on the other hand, will benefit two ARB communities and two ARB organizations in the areas of Atok, Sablan and Tuba in Benguet 

Among the recipients of VLPCEP projects are the Arabica Coffee Growers Marketing and the Agrarian Reform Community Multi-Purpose Cooperatives in the area.

DAR will deliver more projects to the ARBs in Cordillera, particularly the distribution of coffee seedlings and other machinery to develop further their lands.

Cordillera Administrative Region Governor Cresencio Pacalso and Baguio City Mayor Mauricio Domogan also joined the top DAR officials during the distribution of CLOAs.

Pacalso expressed gratitude to DAR’s support to the farmers in the region, saying that the lands distributed and projects turned over are of great help in the countryside development.

news national 1 pix 3 nov. 8 2017For his part, Mayor Domogan who also served as the Regional Development Council Chair of Cordillera thanked the administration of President Duterte for giving priority to address the pressing problems of the farmers in the country, particularly on poverty and landlessness.

Domogan also congratulated the farmer beneficiaries and hoped that they would make their lands more productive.

Photo 1: DAR OIC Secretary Rosalina L. Bistoyong (2nd from left) together with Cordillera Administrative Governor Cresencio Pacalso (3rd from left) and DAR Cordillera Region Director Marjorie P. Ayson (left) led the distribution of certificates of land ownership award (CLOAs) to 1,652 agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) during the distribution ceremony held onNovember 8, 2017 at the Gestdan Centrum in Baguio City.

Photo 2: DAR OIC Secretary Rosalina L. Bistoyong posed with the oldest agrarian reform beneficiary (ARB) Molina Comila, 72 years old from Kapangan, Benguet. Comila is among the 1,652 ARBs who received their certificates of land ownership award (CLOAs) in a distribution ceremony held on November 8, 2017 at the Gestdan Centrum in Baguio City.

Photo 3: DAR OIC Secretary Rosalina L. Bistoyong and Cordillera Administrative Governor Cresencio Pacalso posed with part of the 1,652 agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) who received their certificates of land ownership award (CLOAs) during the distribution ceremony held on November 8, 2017 at the Gestdan Centrum in Baguio City.

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