“This is in line with the DAR’s priority thrusts and policy direction, foremost of which is the protection and security of tenure of farmer-beneficiaries,” Mariano said.
Named the “National Task for ARBs Installation,” Mariano stressed the need to address seriously the saddening experiences of farmer-beneficiaries, their inability to till and enjoy the fruits of their farmlands due to the continued harassment and intimidation exerted against them by the former landowners.
Initial report as of September 30 this year shows that there are a total of 28,586 farmer-beneficiaries, who are already awarded with certificates of land ownership award (CLOAs), but are still not in possession of their shared farm lots.
Western Visayas (Region 6) has the highest number of uninstalled farmer-beneficiaries at 13,776, with Negros Occidental 1 being accounted for 9,588. Eastern Visayas comes next with 8,495, all from the province of Leyte.
This, he said, is contrary to the spirit and intent of the Republic Act 6657 or the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law of 1988, as amended by RA No. 9700: “… provide farmers and farmworkers the opportunity to enhance their dignity and improve the quality of their lives through greater productivity of agricultural lands.”
The creation of the task force showed Mariano’s grim determination to see that no farmer-beneficiary would be evicted from the land he/she is tilling, while he is the secretary of the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR).