Secretary in the News

June 26, 2017 564

DAR officials, employees reach 'agreement' on 4-year row

MANILA -- Agrarian reform officials and employees have reached an agreement that would end their four-year row over the plight of 10,000 department employees nationwide who were displaced under the government’s rationalization scheme. Read More..
manilatimes 1
Jun 12, 2017 376

Food firm’s complaint vs DAR officials junked

The Office of the Ombudsman has dismissed a graft complaint filed by the Lapanday Foods Corporation (LFC) against Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Secretary Rafael Mariano and Undersecretary Luis Pañgulayan. Read More..
business mirror
May 30, 2017 1227

DAR amends rules on adjudication of agrarian law…

TO ensure a just, inexpensive and expeditious determination of agrarian cases, the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) has amended its rules on adjudication of cases involving agrarian law implementation (ALI). Read More..
May 30, 2017 482

Luisita farmers to stay as lot owners

AGRARIAN Secretary Rafael Mariano said on Friday that farmer-beneficiaries of Hacienda Luisita Inc. will stay as owners of lots under the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program. Read More..

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DAR chief: 727-hectare Hacienda Luisita property covered by CARP

rappler logoMANILA, Philippines –Agrarian Reform Secretary Rafael Marianoon Friday, February 24, issued an order that will place a 727-hectare property of Hacienda Luisita, Incorporated (HLI) in Tarlac under the coverage of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP). "The order in Hacienda Luisita would give justice to farmer-tenants who have struggled to take the land due to them for more than a quarter of a century, ever since agrarian reform was introduced in the country," Mariano said in a statement posted on the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) website.

Mariano directed the provincial and municipal agrarian reform officers of Tarlac to immediately place 384 hectares of a 500-hectare property of HLI under CARP coverage.

The 500-hectare property was previously approved for conversion in 1996 and has been sold, transferred, and/or assigned to the following:

  • Centennary Holidays, Incorporated
  • Luisita Realty Corporation (LRC)
  • Luisita Industrial Park Corporation (LIPCO)
  • Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC)
The 384-hectare property, meanwhile, will be subjected to a retention limit rights with a total of 10-hectare retention limit (5-hectare retention limits each for LRC and RCBC), so only a total of 374 hectares will be covered under CARP.

In addition to the 374-hectare property, another 353 hectares of land owned by Tarlac Development Corporation (TADECO) in barangays Balete and Cutcut in Hacienda Luisita will also be part of CARP coverage.

Recent ocular inspection and investigation of a DAR team revealed that the TADECO areas – intentionally excluded by HLI in the previous land distribution process of DAR – can be covered for distribution to farmer beneficiaries.

'No legal basis'

In the statement, Mariano said his department found no legal basis to grant an extension period for the development of the 500-hectare HLI land.

The property was converted from agricultural to industrial use in 1996 by virtue of DARCO Conversion 030601074-764-(95), series of 1996, and HLI requested for an extension of time to complete the development of the property for economic reasons in 2002, and again in 2016.

But according to Mariano, 20 years have already passed since the issuance of the conversion order.

"Pursuant to Section 65 of [Republic Act] 6657, as amended, the failure to fully implement the conversion plan within 5 years from the issuance of the DAR conversion order, or any violation of the conditions of the conversion order, in the event such failure or violation was due to the fault of the applicant, shall cause the land subject thereof to automatically be covered by CARP, subject to the right of retention," he added.

He also cited Section 11 of DAR Administrative Order 7, series of 2011 in coming up with the decision.

Mariano said his recent order is meant to support President Rodrigo Duterte's directive to fast-track the distribution of lands to farmer beneficiaries, fulfill DAR's mandate to cover all available agricultural areas for land reform, and implement the Supreme Court's 2004 order for the total land distribution of Hacienda Luisita.

It was Duterte's campaign promise to pursue land reform by prioritizing the provision of support services alongside land distribution to farmers. –