Iloilo City -Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Secretary John R. Castriciones yesterday conducted a dialogue with representatives from Federation of Sicogon Island Farmers and Fisherfolk Association (FESIFFA), Buaya Farmers and Fisherfolks Association (BUFFA), Uswag Association Homeowners Association (USWAGON HOA), Option 1 takers, and the Ayala Land Inc.(ALI) to settle a dispute arising from the construction of a world-class tourist destination in Sicogon Island, Iloilo City.
Castriciones led the DAR delegates together with Undersecretary for Legal Affairs Office (LAO) Atty. Luis Meinrado C. Pangulayan, OIC - Director of Bureau of Agrarian Legal Assistance (BALA) Atty. Robert Anthony P. Yu, Director Legal Service/Public Assistance and Media Relations Service Atty. Resty C. Osias, Director Rolando Cua and Regional Director Eugene P. Follante.
The dialoque was held to resolve the issue raised by the President of the FESIFFA Raul Ramos to revoke the land conversion order due to a breach of contract and the claim that project developer Ayala Land Inc. and private landowners' group Sicogon Development Corp. (SIDECO) have not built the 30-hectare relocation site for residents who will be displaced by the project.
Castriciones clarified to both groups the compromise and framework of agreement that they have entered into.
Senior Vice President of Ayala Land Inc. Jose Jalandoni assured the groups that they will honor their commitment and spend more money for the benefit of the farmers.
Castriciones assured both groups that the interest and rights of the agrarian reform beneficiaries will be protected.
Ramos expressed his intention to resolve the issue on representation to the members of the FESIFFA.
Castriciones directed DAR Regional Office 6 Chief Legal, Provincial Chief Legal to attend a general assembly “unity meeting” in Sicogon Island on August 23, 2018 to draft a resolution indorsing who will be authorized in the negotiation of the joint venture with the Ayala Land Inc.
The agrarian reform beneficiaries entered into a compromise deal with ALI and Sideco November of 2014. Under the deal, the two companies agreed to set aside a 30-ha lot for resettlement housing, 38-million for livelihood projects, 76 million for the construction of amenities and land preparations for the residential site and donated a 40-ha for conventional farming.
Sicogon island is located in Iloilo province, where property developer Ayala Land Inc. (ALI) and landowners' group Sicogon Development Corp. (Sideco) will construct a world-class tourist destination.
Photo 1: Secretary John R. Castriciones hears the issues and concerns of the Buaya Farmers and Fisherfolks Association(BUFFA).
Photo 2: DAR Secretary John R. Castriciones with Federation of Sicogon Island Farmers and Fisherfolks Association (FESIFFA) President Raul Ramos.
Photo 3: Tribal war between FESIFFA President and BUFFA Chair was ended by shaking of hands.
Photo 4: DAR hand in hand with Ayala land for the benefit of the Sicogon farmers.
Photo 5: DAR Secretary John R. Castriciones with the group from ALI., FESIFFA, BUFFA, USWAGON HOA and Option 1 takers of President Duterte signature pose.
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