July 20, 1989 - June 30,1992

MIRIAM D. SANTIAGO, Secretary, DAR (July 20, 1989- January 4, 1990)
FLORENCIO B. ABAD, Secretary, DAR (January 4, 1990-April 5, 1990)
BENJAMIN T. LEONG, Secretary, DAR (April 6, 1990-June30,1992)

There were many changes of leadership in DAR during the administration of President Corazon Aquino. Although this led to lack of continuity in priorities, programs and projects, it can be said that the three Secretaries, namely: Miriam D. Santiago, Florencio B. Abad and Benjamin T. Leong came up with policies and new perspectives to implement CARP.

Among the three secretaries mentioned, it was Secretary Benjamin Leong who had the opportunity to continue where Secretary Juico left off. Through his administration, the implementing rules and mechanisms for the different Executive Orders to speed up CARP implementation (405, 406, 407 and 448) were established to:

• Create Agro-Industrial Development Areas (AIDAs) to align programs and projects of CARP implementing agencies;

• Establish CARP Implementing Teams (CITs) from the national to the municipal levels to facilitate identification of priority areas for coverage, solve operating problems and coordinated the delivery of support services;

• Identify Strategic Operating Provinces where greater part of CARP activities will be concentrated to intend the direct use of resources effectively.

At the end of Secretary Leong's administration, a total of 170,904 tenants were beneficiaries of Leasehold Operation covering 267,160 hectares. Application of nine corporations for the Stock Distribution Option covering 7,275 hectares were approved and 84 firms distributed 216.2 million of production and profit shares to 81,992 farmworkers. (The Record and Legacy of the Aquino Administration in AR: Executive Summary, Planning Service-DAR)

It was also during this time of the Department that the Agrarian Justice component or AJD was recognized by the CARP public through the development of the Paralegal Program and because of the quasi-judicial power of the DAR through the DARAB (Department of Agrarian Reform Adjudication Board).

Philip E. Juico

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PHILIP E. JUICO, Secretary, Department of Agrarian Reform  (July 23, 1987-July 1, 1989)
Secretary Juico was Secretary of the newly re-organized Department of Agrarian Reform (EO 129-A) and sought the implementation of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program. Armed with all the measures to speed up the implementation of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program, he immediately came out with DAR Administrative Order No. 7, Series of 1988 which launched the LISTASAKA land registration program. The program was aimed to get the necessary data that will be used to set and monitor land ownership.

Hopes were high during this time that the program would provide a better indication of the concentration of landholdings than the census data, for it sought to establish a database of agricultural lands according to the retention limits and priorities under CARP.

However, the controversial Garchitorena scam shortened the stay of Secretary Juico as Secretary of DAR. Although he did not have any direct link to the scam, he resigned and was replaced by Secretary Miriam D. Santiago.

Heherson T. Alvarez

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HEHERSON T. ALVAREZ, Minister, Ministry of Agrarian Reform (May 1, 1986-March 7, 1987)

After the 1986 Presidential Election, Minister Alvarez was designated as head of the Ministry of Department of Agrarian Reform in President Corazon Aquino’s transition government. He continued with the implementation of PD 27. He ran and won a seat at the Senate after less than a year as Minister of MAR.

Conrado F. Estrella

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CONRADO F. ESTRELLA, Governor, Land Authority (January 1966-September 1971)
Secretary, Dept. of Agrarian Reform (September 1981 to April 1986)
Secretary Conrado Estrella is credited for carrying out measures to facilitate the implementation of the agrarian reform program under the Marcos administration. Through the initial effort of his administration, a total of 236 municipalities from Luzon and Visayas with a total coverage of 716, 912 hectares involving 292, 429 farmer beneficiaries were under the leasehold by the end of 1971. That same year, through his endeavors the National Land Reform Council for which he was a member approved the acquisition of One hundred seventy three (173) agricultural estates for distribution to tenant-tillers.

As Minister of the Ministry of Agrarian Reform, he was given the authority and power to issue Certificate of Land Transfer and Emancipation Patent.

Secretary Estrella ensured the implementation of PD 27 (The Tenant Emancipation Decree) when the entire country was proclaimed into a land reform area (PD 2). During his term, the tenanted rice and corn lands gave the tenants opportunity to purchase the lands they tilled, while share tenants on lands over 7 hectares became leaseholders.

The Ministry of Agrarian Reform which later became the Department of Agrarian Reform (RA 6389), distributed and titled a total of 260,000 hectares of land in a period of fourteen years. Subsequently, Certificates of Land Transfers (CLTs) in the rice and corn areas were awarded to 250,000 tenant farmers, covering almost half a million hectares, throughout his leadership in the Department. He was also the Governor of the Land Authority from January 1966 to September 1971. In fact, he is credited for the successful implementation of the leasehold program  as Governor of the Land Authority in the provinces of  Pangasinan, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Pampanga, Tarlac, Occidental Mindoro, Camarines Sur, and Misamis Oriental..