Zambalenos TO DENR: Stop destructive mining in Sta Cruz, Candelaria, DECIDE NOW!

Zambales – Angry, impatient and desperate for government action–this is the current disposition of the people of  Sta. Cruz and Candelaria, after Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) Dir. Leo Jasareno has not yet acted on alleged violations of Benguet Mining Corp., (complete the company name of DMCI) DMCI, Eramen Minerals Inc., and Filipinas Mining Corp/LAMI. In a letter sent by Dr. Benito Molino, chairperson of Concerned Citizens of Sta. Cruz Zambales (CCOS) to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Sec. Ramon Paje, Molino strongly urged DENR and MGB to come up with a decision as soon as possible….

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Agricultural Land Grabbing through Agribusiness Venture Arrangements with ARBs: Summary of Hijo Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Cooperative (HARBCO) Case

HARBCO à composed of 724 agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) who were awarded under the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) a collective CLOA for 579 hectares of the 1,469-hectare property of the Hijo Plantation, Inc. (HPI) HPI à former landowner of 1,469 has. of land located in Tagum, Davao del Norte. The property is primarily devoted to the production of export quality (Cavendish) bananas. 1995à HPI offered the land for coverage under CARP through the Voluntary Offer to Sell (VOS) scheme.  The Courts awarded HPI a valuation of P1.03 million per hectare. 28 October 1996 à All identified and qualified ARBs…

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Aquino lacks political will for land reform – priest

MANILA, Feb.  6, 2014—The huge backlog in land allocation and distribution show the Aquino administration’s lack of political will to implement land reform, the Church’s social action arm said Fr. Edu Gariguez of the National Secretariat for Social Action—Justice and Peace (Nassa) said the government has not done enough to cause genuine agrarian reform in the country. “The issue lies in the [lack of] political will and the resolve of the Aquino government to pursue this social reform agenda,” Gariguez said. Around 200 farmers from different provinces picketed the Department of Agrarian Reform on Tuesday to protest the agency’s “effectiveness” in…

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Bishops seek dialogue with Aquino over CARP anew

MANILA, Jan. 30, 2014— A number Catholic bishops are again seeking a dialogue with President Benigno Aquino over the delay in implementing the land reform program. As the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) is set to expire this June, the bishops lamented that the government has been underperforming in land acquisition and distribution. From July 2010 to June 2013, the Department of Agrarian Reform was only able to provide notices of coverage (NOC) or merely 314, 422 hectares of land against the original CARP balance of 1.2 million hectares. According to the bishops, this “gives us deep cause of concern…

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NASSA visits farmer – beneficiaries in Ormoc

The Peace Building and Good Governance Program Unit of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines – National Secretariat for Social Action, Justice and Peace visited the farmer – beneficiaries of the Agrarian Reform program in Ormoc City under the Archdiocese of Palo on February 17-18, 2013. NASSA’s peace building and good governance program coordinator Edilberto C. Guyano together with Palo Archdiocese Social Action Director Fr. Edwin Perinto and partners from Canada, Development and Peace conducted an open forum and consultation to the farmers for a possible help they could bring. [SocialActionNews]  

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PNoy urged to expedite CARP implementation

MANILA, Dec. 21, 2012—The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines – National Secretariat for Social Action, Justice and Peace (CBCP-NASSA) called on the Aquino Administration to fulfill its promise to complete the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) and to remove all the obstacles that delay and hinder its implementation. NASSA, in a statement has expressed its deep concern on the situation of 56 farmers who are on hunger strike in front of the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) since December 17. “We are deeply concerned about the situation. By the end of the third day, December 19, a total of…

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Govt not serious in land reform: Bishop

MANILA, Oct. 10, 2012— Manila Auxiliary Bishop Broderick Pabillo has remarked Wednesday that the government is not serious in implementing the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP). The head of the National Secretariat for Social Action, Justice and Peace (Nassa) of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines expressed concern that CARP may soon expire “without substantial accomplishment.” “Millions of landless tillers will remain landless. Worse, thousands of DAR (Department of Agrarian Reform) employees would soon be jobless,” Pabillo said. He lamented that from July 2010 to August 2012, only 255, 506 hectares have so far been distributed to farmer beneficiaries…

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Priest, lawyer denounce irregularity in Coco levy SC ruling

MANILA, September 21, 2012—A Catholic priest and lawyer denounced the irregularity of the Supreme Court ruling last April 2011, awarding a 20% share of Eduardo ‘Danding’ Cojuanco in San Miguel Corporation. CBCP’s National Secretariat for Social Action (NASSA) through its executive secretary, Fr. Edu Gariguez, said that they have filed a petition at the Supreme Court citing a law that defines ill-gotten wealth. “There is an irregularity in interpreting the law. As of the moment, we wanted them to know that there is a clear definition of ill-gotten wealth and they must also check the case again,” Gariguez said. Gariguez…

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Bishop prays for SC’s change of heart on coco levy case

MANILA, Sept. 20, 2012— A Catholic bishop called on the Supreme Court to revisit its ruling on the coco levy case as he pray for the ‘change of heart’ among magistrates on the issue. Manila Auxiliary Bishop Broderick Pabillo believes that farmers are the rightful owners of the multi-billion coco levy funds and not businessman Eduardo “Danding” Cojuangco. “What we are praying is the change of heart and change of mind of our justices in the Supreme Court. That change in their decision would depend on how their views will change,” Pabillo said. The church official made the statement during his…

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