KALIBO, Aklan, 11 April (PIA6) -- There are now more women leaders than men as far as managing the Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Organizations (ARBOs) in Aklan is concerned, based on data from the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) here.
Women’s Month celebration is NOT just about women.
For the Department of Agrarian Reform in Region 6, it’s a multi-stakeholders claim to celebrate the occasion. Regional Director Gideon A. Umadhay, Jr. in his visit to DAR Aklan on March 22, 2017 emphasized that men’s involvement in attaining women’s empowerment spells the difference.
DAR Region Six is the first national agency to organize the Men Opposed to Violence Against Women Everywhere (MOVE) among all its provincial offices. Umadhay in his policy directive enjoined all male DAR employees to get involve and internalize the Gender and Development programs, activities, and projects. The directive also covers formation of MOVE among the agrarian reform beneficiaries as an inclusive partnership among DAR and its clientele.
Through the formation of MOVE DAR chapters in the region, men are actively engaged in ensuring that the agency’s mandates under the Magna Carta of Women and other commitments are warranted.
The Men Opposed to Violence Against Women Everywhere, (Inc.) is an organization of pro-active and principled men who voluntarily committed themselves to pursue the elimination of violence against women and children. MOVE DAR Aklan chapter was organized in 2013 and recognized as among the active chapters of the province. John Bustamante is the current MOVE DAR Aklan President and Amelito Parales, also of DAR Aklan is the provincial president of MOVE Aklan. MOVE orientations and formations are conducted in DAR Capiz, Antique, Iloilo, Regional Office and Guimaras.
Umadhay recognized that as the agency’s duty-bearers’ other enabling mechanisms such as the GAD Focal Points System (GFPS) and the DAR Ladies Association must operate efficiently for gender mainstreaming to work. He called on all members of the GFPS to review and observe the GAD mandates and appropriate implementation of the GAD Plan and Budget. He likewise emphasized that DAR must ensure institutional compliance to the minimum 5% utilization of the GAD budget.
DAR 6 continues to pursue its GAD activities and various programs are scheduled region-wide. Culmination and recognition program will be on March 30, 2017 at Iloilo City. (Grace Quimpo)
Photo 1: MOVE DAR Aklan Chapter inducted by PARPO II Ma. Teresa Valencia and Atty Mylen Esquivel, NGRP, witness.
Photo 2: MOVE DAR Capiz Chapter with PARPO Felix Servidad, Honorary Chair (leftmost)
#DAR4Farmers #Land4Farmers #PartnerForChange #WomenMakeChange
Mariano expressed his condolences to the families of the victims as he condemned the shooting incident. "Necessary steps must be done to prevent further injuries," he added.
The DAR Secretary also instructed Regional Director Gideon Umadhay Jr. and the Provincial Agrarian Reform Officer to probe the land dispute in the Nemencio Tan landholding to prevent bloodshed and more injuries in the agrarian reform-covered land.
Reports from local farmers’ group Task Force Mapalad (TFM) showed that gunmen of Ferdinand Bacanto, administrator of the property, fired gunshots at the group of farmers and Certificate of Land Ownership Award (CLOA) holders at around 4 p.m. of February 11. Assailants allegedly used .45 and .357 caliber pistols, according to reports.
Data sent to DAR identified the victims as members of TFM and Bulyog Capiznon, an alliance of super typhoon Yolanda survivors. They were said to be holding a campout protest in Barangay Culilang when they were attacked by the alleged landlord goons.
Orlando Eslana sustained a gunshot wound at the back and was pronounced dead on arrival at the Bailan Hospital in Pontevedra, Capiz. The four other injured were Ana Bocala, Nida Amo, Adel Vergara and Melinda Arroyo who remains in critical condition at the Ilo-ilo hospital.
On ground accounts said that violence is currently escalating in the area. Umadhay said the local police has already dispatched a team and the DAR Central Office is now awaiting the official incident report.
#DAR4Farmers #Land4Farmers #PartnerForChange
“The mission, vision and core values will be our guide in fulfilling our work in the department. And should the genuine agrarian reform program be enacted, these shall also be our guide in implementing it in the next six years,” Ka Paeng said.
Ka Paeng called on his central and Regional Directors to strategize on how to improve the implementation of agrarian reform program in the country.
During the plenary and focus group discussion, the participants were able to identify the internal and external drivers and barriers of the DAR, which either helped or hindered in the achievements of its targets.
The DAR Directors also identified opportunities for improvements to further enhance the implementation of the DAR’s major final outputs, support to operations projects, priority programs and management accountability.
At the strategic planning, Mariano shared with the DAR his thrusts and policy directives to the participants.
“The department’s priority thrusts and policy direction is geared towards protecting and ensuring the security of tenure of the farmer-beneficiaries of the program,” Mariano said.
Mariano stressed that DAR should lead in the breaking up of control and monopoly of agricultural lands of the few landowners and foreign corporations to put an end to feudal and semi-feudal exploitations of the farmers.
The DAR, at present, has drafted a law intended to push for the genuine agrarian reform program, which include among others the distribution of agricultural lands for free, or at very least cost, to the farmers. Its salient features also include the provision of social and historical justice to farmers, provision of support services, strengthening of the spirit of cooperativism to create productivity, increase farmer’s income and transform them into vibrant and efficient producers.
For his final message, the Secretary directed the DAR managers to implement agrarian reform laws to aid in farmer’s rights and welfare.
The strategic planning was conducted on September 19-21 at the Punta Villa Resort in Iloilo City. (Rosemarie S. Lomibao)
Photo 1: The Regional Directors with Ka Paeng (left) during one of the workshops.
Photo 2: Secretary Rafael Mariano briefs the officials from the central and regional offices on the new thrusts and policy directions of the department.
Photo 3: DAR participants from the central and regional offices.