A Time of Challenge to the Nation

“A Time of Challenge to the Nation”
Message to the Interim Batasang Pambansa
Of His Excellency Ferdinand E. Marcos
President of the Philippines

[July 28, 1980]

Mr. Speaker, distinguished Members of the Batasang Pambansa, Mr. Chief Justice of the Supreme Court and members of that highest tribunal of the Judiciary, Your Excellencies of the Diplomatic Corps, distinguished guests, my fellow administrators in government, my friends:

It is the custom at the opening of the annual session of our young parliament for the President and Prime Minister to address himself here to a review of the year just concluded and to set before this Assembly the government’s program of legislation for the year now beginning.

With your permission, I shall depart from the stricture of custom, and shall instead endeavor to look at the state of the nation from the larger per­spective of the decades of those that are now past, and the one that now confronts us—the decades of the 60′s and the 70′s and the 80′s up to the 90′s and the end of our century.

For this is what the times impel us to review and ponder here today. At no other time than now has it ever been more necessary for our people to understand the course of the nation—from where we have come and where we are going.

There is today a disturbing mood of disquiet and I confusion that neither reflects the real challenges nor befits the peoples of the world who have surmounted many dangers in the years just past.

Overnight, the world has become suddenly do­minated by rumors and wracked by self-doubt. Overnight, there appears to have occurred an erosion of self-confidence, which was once the fount of dynamism, in spite of the many crises that have beset the whole world.

In all my fifteen years as President of our Republic, I have never delivered a message to the legislature under such a fever of speculation and conjecture as that which shadows my appearance here today, except perhaps in the year 1970 about which I am reminded as I take this rostrum.

By this I do not mean the healthy examination and debate that should and must go on in the confrontation of those issues vital to national life in all democratic states. Nor do I make light of the fact that we live in times of profound challenge and uncertainty. Rather I am speaking of the sickly anxiety that seems to have overtaken most nations, as they view the course of developments abroad and reflect on their impact at home. I am speaking of the creeping defeatism that has perceptibly reared its head again among peoples of the world. And in the Philippines I am speaking of the pre­dictable efforts of those who all these years have never shared the burden of effort with our people and have instead shirked their citizens’ duties and devoted their time wholly to the sowing of confusion and the undermining of the efforts of Government.

The world has heard these voices before, of course, and history has found and proven them false.

Let us get our perspectives right and straight. Demagoguery has never solved problems. Inaction, immobility and fearful cowering in hesitancy or procrastination have always ended in tragedy, individual as well as national.

In what we truly confront today, we do not face anything new or alien to our experience as a people.

There are for us only two ways of viewing the government’s duty in matters affecting our econo­mic and social life today.

The first counsels us towards halting the pro­grams, inaction, postponing decisions, and adopting half measures that are mere palliatives reminiscent of our past responses to problems, which falsely place at center stage pain killers in lieu of real me­dicines for the disease in the hope that problems will wear themselves out and that the situation will return to normal. These measures make the claim of shielding the people from the onslaughts of cri­sis, but in fact succeed only in prolonging and deepening the nation’s state of embattlement. This course of action belongs to the past and to the party of reaction and opposition, which historically has never provided the nation with any sense of leadership especially in a time of crisis.

Our philosophy of government, a radical departure from the old notions of powers and authority, has been most evident in our single-minded obsession with development planning.

Basically, we have addressed ourselves to ful­filling three overriding objectives:

First, the attainment of national stability in the face of what dawned on us early as a pervasive time of crisis in the global economy;

Second, the accelerated expansion of the na­tional economy in both industry and agriculture and particularly in new sectors of economic acti­vity; and

Third, the sharing of the fruit of development and the democratization of wealth to narrow the terrible dichotomies between the rich and the poor, and the urban and rural sectors of the nation.

Because we live today seven years removed from the conditions of national life at the beginning of the seventies, many of us tend to falsely assume that the many things that now dominate the na­tional landscape .and characterize the state of the nation have always been with us. Yet the plain truth is that we have written during the last seven years perhaps the greatest success story in our en­tire national history.

Let me then review in outline form this story of our socio-economic and political development. If I tend to stick to figures, perhaps it is because I am excited by figures, all kinds of figures. There is nothing, however, more fascinating than that par­ticular figure, the figure of economic development. This fascinates, this turns me on.

Let us go back to 1965. In 1965 what was the gross national product in real terms? It was P39.5 billion. In 1979 the country’s GNP stood at a re­markable P86.7 billion, also in real terms. It re­presents a healthy growth rate of 6.6 percent a year. Our critics keep claiming that our growth rate has been kept from 2 to 5 percent. In 1980 the esti­mates placed GNP at P220 billion at current rates, four times the 1972 GNP level.

But how is this reflected in the individual citi­zen’s income? How does it affect his personal in­come? In general terms, we can say that in 1965 the per capita income stood at P736, and this reach­ed P1,133 in 1970 and Pl,428 in 1972; but as of the end of 1979 real per capita income, measured at constant 1972 prices, amounted to P1,862; at cur­rent figures, P4,630. This year the per capita in­come is expected to increase further to P5,874 or $780 a fivefold increase! This merely means that measured as of 1970 prices, the average income of every individual in the Philippines is not merely doubled and trebled, but quintupled.

Yet we kept hearing the repeated canard that the New Society has merely tended to the rich and not to the poor. A review of the sectoral averages in income shows a more dramatic picture.

We have converted a grain-deficit country to a rice-surplus-and-exporting country. What does this mean to the individual Filipino? To the indivi­dual farmer, it means an increase in the average rice yield per hectare of from 30 cavans to 60 cavans in the first five years and from 60 to 90 in the latter years. The income of the farmer not only increased twice or three times; in some, instances, it has qua­drupled.

We do not need to speak of “Masagana 99″ nor the political will that went into the program for rice sufficiency, nor the participation of each and every citizen in every socio-economic and political program of our country. However, let me say that in 1965 our farmers harvested only 4.3 million tons of rice and that in 1972 production had risen slight­ly to 5.1 million metric tons. But last year’s pro­duction was 7.25 million metric tons. And this was the achievement of a people barehanded and with limited resources.

In other food crops such as fish, corn, coffee they contributed their share in the increase of our total crop production from 12.2 million metric tons in 1965 to last year’s production of 24.4 million metric tons—an exact doubling of productivity dur­ing the entire period under review.

Neither should it be necessary to speak of the increasing investments. From 1972 to 1979, in­vestments rose at a healthy rate of 27.5 percent, from P11.6 billion in 1972 to P63.4 billion in 1979. Of this, foreign investments represented a vital per­centage. To show the dramatic change in the busi­ness climate, in 1965, investments amounted to only P4.9 billion in its entirety. Let us take one sector alone. In 1979, applications solely for completely new industrial projects totalled more than one-half of the entire investments in 1965 and 1972. In 1970 local participation in investments was limited to about 50 percent of the entire investment. Today local participation, meaning Filipino participation, in investments) especially in industrial investments, has increased to 75 percent. This merely means that the individual Filipino has claimed successfully his rightful share of the industrial development of this country.

It is also said that the multinationals gobble up all economic opportunities, and this, they claimed, means that the multinationals have been permitted and licensed to rob the Filipino people of their right­ful share of income and profit. Is this true? This is not supported by the data and statistics. When I took over as President, the only exports of the Philippines were the four traditional products that you and I know about at that time: sugar, coconut products, mineral ores and forest products. They constituted about 85 percent of the entire export products of the country. There were no manufac­tures or semi-manufactures to speak of, exports coming from the Philippines. Or if there were, they contributed a meager, according to the data, 6.7 percent in 1972 to such exports. But by 1979 they were contributing 34 percent.

We have changed the complexion, therefore, of our exports; diversified our markets; and now we have such items sold to other countries like elec­tronic and transport components, chemicals, wood­crafts, garments and handicrafts.

But if we are to limit our study to industrial growth, we see a more outstanding performance instead of the 6.4 percent growth recorded from 1967 to 1972. I refer to the record of industrial growth in the latter part of the 70′s, when it ave­raged an annual growth rate of 8.3 percent. And this will no doubt increase even more dramatically with the acceleration of the momentum of industrialization which we have set as a program espe­cially with the eleven chosen basic factories and industries we are developing.

Suffice it to say that there is also another aspect which we find dramatic, and that is tourism. It is a sector well-known to you. We have inched for­ward close to the one million tourists mark, bringing in earnings close to $250 million annually from this non-trade dollar-earner.

And the infrastructure, which is the basis of our economic planning, shows a quantum leap. In 1965 the existing road network totalled 55,544 kilo­meters. By 1972, we had increased it to 77,278 kilometers. Today, a system of 129,186 kilometers of highways and access roads joins our remotest barrios to the centers of commerce and population. The entire system can now be said to be linked from the north to the south, island to island.

To further ease the movement of people and commodities, we have increased our airports from 140 to 199; seaports from 622 to 849, with 60 sea­ports being expanded and improved to receive for­eign shipping.

One of the sectors that needs further improve­ment is communication facilities and network. But certainly there has been a great increase. During the seven-year period under review there have been installed 33 rural telephone exchanges, 32 telegraph telex stations, 795 telegraph stations, and 424 ra­dio stations; there have been organized 29 regional postal centers and 336 new post offices.

Over the brief span of seven years we managed to build as many irrigation systems or, rather, irrigation systems that water as much an area as is equal or more than that covered by all the irrigation systems that were constructed since the beginning of the Spanish regime in 1521; so that today our irrigated areas total 1.3 million hectares, a little bit more. Some of the data speak of 104 million hectares—compared to the original 616,000 hectares in 1970 .and 300,000 in 1965.

There are some outstanding engineering con­structions which we can refer to like Pantabangan, which irrigates 78,000 hectares and generates 100 megawatts of power as well as mitigate floods in the lower reaches of the Pampanga River.

The Magat River Multi-Purpose Project in Isa­bela, the biggest of its kind in the Philippines and perhaps in Southeast Asia, will irrigate 113,000 hectares in Cagayan Valley and, more importantly, generates 540 megawatts of power to augment the capacity of the Luzon grid, thereby reducing our dependence on oil, especially on foreign oil.

In the 60′s, construction of schoolrooms was at the rate of only 1,000 rooms a year. In 1972 we immediately boosted construction of schoolrooms to a high rate of 6,000 a year. By 1979 we increased this to 13,000 a year.

One accomplishment which signals the new de­cade of the 70′s is the rural electrification program. Before there was barely any electrification in the rural areas, but at the end of 1979 there were elec­trical connections to a million-and-a-half houses, servicing more than eight million of our people, all of them in the rural areas. A total of 113 co­operatives were organized in the Visayas and Min­danao and the program is so successful that the United States and some developing countries have honored us by pointing to the Philippines as a model for rural electrification in developing countries. (Applause)

The question is often asked: How does the com­mon man share in the fruits of economic develop­ment? Has development contributed to the social well-being of our people?

The answer to these questions is an unqualified “yes.” The income of the lowest 21 percent of our country’s population has more than doubled from 2.5 percent of the total in 1965 to 5.5 percent in 1975 and certainly in 1979 this has further accelerated.

How about employment? At what rate have we increased the employment of our people? I speak of the rate of employment. The period from 1965 to 1972 was marked by an employment rate of 2.3 percent. The period under review, 1972 to 1979, shows that the employment rate increased to 4.2 percent.

On the other hand, unemployment and under­employment went down to 5.1 percent and 10.9 per­cent during the last seven years, as compared to the high rates of 17 percent and 23 percent over the 1965~1972 period. Within the 80′s we expect to bring down the unemployment rate further to 4 percent. Perhaps we should call attention to the fact that even in the United States unemployment some­times reaches as high as 8 percent.

It will be noted parenthetically here that our population program has succeeded in reducing the high growth rate from 3.01 percent as of the close of the 60′s to 2.38 percent as of the end of 1979.

Often repeated is the claim that the value of the peso has been so eroded that the minimum wage is minimal. Is this correct? Let me clarify the figures. In 1970, the minimum wage was P8.00. Assuming that there has been a reduction by as much as 60 or 70 percent in the purchasing cap­ability or value of our currency, therefore, there ­should be doubling or a trebling of the minimum wage in order to catch up with the value of the peso in 1972 or 1970. It has not only trebled; it has reached P26.38 as of this year. If counted on the basis of the value of the peso, the P8.00 of 1972 would be equivalent to about P19 today. It is ob­vious, therefore, that the present minimum wage of P26.38 exceeds the value of the take-home pay of wage-earners in 1970 by P7.00.

To fight unemployment, we have encouraged the development of skilled and semi-skilled labor, and have allowed these workers to work overseas. Those abroad, 500,000 of them, earned for their families and the country a total of more than $1 billion every year.

In social services, particularly in health and nutrition, we have made significant headway. The life-span of Filipinos has increased from 58 years in 1970 to 62 years in 1980, the infant mortality rate has been reduced to 66 per thousand from 80 per thousand.

Calorie intake has increased from 83.6 to 88.6 percent in 1978. Greater protein intake has also been noted from 94.5 percent to 102 percent.

The nutrition program of the Philippines, in­cidentally, has been adopted as a model by the United Nations for all Third World countries, and the Phil­ippines has become a part of the United Nations University. (Applause)

Every year there is an increase in the number of pupils who are accommodated in our school sys­tem. In 1979-1980, enrollment was about 9 million. This year, 1980, there are 12.2 million pupils en­rolled. The literacy rate has been increased to 88.9 percent this year from 83.4 percent ten years ago. In Manila, the literacy rate is almost 100 percent.

I point out these facts because it is not well-known how much we subsidize education in our country. Not only do we give free elementary and secondary education; we grant educational benefits to state institutions. For the University of the Philippines alone, let it be noted that we have pro­vided yearly a subsidy of P5,000 for every student except for the College of Medicine where we provide. P18,000 per student annually.

I need not perhaps refer to the Human Settlements and the BLISS project have been looked upon by most of our people as their last hope to own a home. They find a blossoming of that hope for a home, and not just for a home but for a source of livelihood for it is the goal of the Human Settlements Ministry that it does not merely offer an empty dwelling but also provide a decent means of livelihood for idle people.

I have not spoken to you of the other important programs, the projects of national development which, however, are founded on peace and order. All I can say is, that not only have the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the defense establish­ment established the atmosphere which allows the continued implementation of all these ambitious programs but, at the same time, we must also com­mend our citizenry all over the country for they have taken it upon themselves to cooperate and extend support to the Armed Forces. Indeed, never in the history of this country have the soldiers of this nation been truly the armed forces of the citizens of the Republic of the Philippines.

There are 100,000 men in uniform, more, but they are not mentioned in exact number. Add to this are about 70,000 policemen and about an equal number of local militia, the home defense units.

There are bound to be scoundrels in any group of men, especially in such a number of men who are taught the art of killing. In such a large group of men, of course, there is need to clean the ranks and we are happy to note that the citizenry, for once, are participating in the efforts to clean the ranks of the Armed Forces of the Philippines and have given their cooperation, understanding, and sym­pathy, which has allowed the Armed Forces to work out its program not only as guardians of our security but also as participants in the economic develop­ment program.

As I review the achievements of the Armed Forces, the police as well as the others, I see many weaknesses, many failures, yes, but I shudder to think what would have happened to the Republic of the Philippines and to its citizenry had we not taken the steps necessary to utilize the Armed Forces, not to take over the civil government but to strengthen the civil government of the Republic of the Philip­pines in 1972. We established a crisis government, for if we had taken the counsel of fear and delayed action, it would have been too late to save the Republic. Let us look around us and we see the lessons taught by such countries, like Kampuchea, with its people of about four million reduced to two million by war, disease, internal fighting through the wrong decisions of their leaders and their people. We see the same lesson in Africa, South America.

I observe that today it is becoming fashionable once again to talk disparagingly of the man in uniform.

We hesitate to speak in defense of our Armed Forces and our police even if they are in the right. We hesitate to speak for our security; we hesitate to speak for the men who place at the disposal of the Republic their lives and their properties and their honor. And we expect from them the utmost vigilance, dedication, patriotism and heroism. The economic development program of our Republic in Mindanao is possible only because of the heroic ef­forts of that armed force and of the civilians who have fought for the peace and order of that por­tion of our country. For we must bring back to the mainstream of our political and economic life the members of our Muslim community.

We hesitate to adopt the social services program and the health program which are both for the good of the ordinary Filipino. We hesitate to provide funds for the necessary projects found in the budget. What was the level of our funding in the budget?

Let me give you some facts. From a level of P2.7 billion in 1965 and P6.3 billion in 1972, the national budget grew to P42.2 billion in 1979. Com­paring the seven-year period, there was an annual growth rate of 12.9 percent over the 1965-1972 period and a 31.2 percent increase over the 1972-­1979 period.

So, how did we spend these budgetary alloca­tions? In 1965, 85 percent of the budget was spent for what is known as operating or current ex­penditures. This actually means the salaries and services of employees, and only 15 percent of the entire budget was spent for capital outlays like roads, bridges, irrigation systems and schoolhouses.

We have now reversed these. In 1979 operating expenditures were drastically reduced from 85 per­cent to 63.5 percent and the greater amount or, rather, what was not spent for the services and salaries is now being spent for investment and capital outlays, capital outlays which, of course, were critical to the national development effort. This is a shift which all must understand, a shift towards more development budgeting, which is the reason for the growth in the economic capacity of the common man during the seven-year period, 1972 to 1979.

With a longer term perspective of what the rest of the 1980’s has to offer and with confidence in the program of our government, we should seize the moment to act while we have the time and while we have the capability.

This is the course that I now commend to the support of the Batasan.

We shall be submitting forthwith for the imme­diate deliberation of this Body our proposed budget program for calendar year 1981.

In the proposed National Budget, we seek the wherewithal to carry through with this strategy of accelerated development in this time of challenge to the nation.

We have strived to embody in the General Ap­propriations Bill a program of expenditures to match the program of development and to meet the urgent problems of the day.

With one eye turned to the difficulties of the times and the other to the need to build bridges to a better future, we have sought to make the budget flexible and resilient, so that we can respond to the new and the unknown that will face us in the coming year and so that we can fund activities that will steadily strengthen national stability and enhance national’ productivity.

Total outlays are proposed at P54.8 billion for 1981, representing an increase of P13 billion over the budget for the year 1980. Current and capital expenditures will constitute P53.1 billion, while debt repayments are projected at P1.7 billion. Receipts are anticipated to grow and reach a total of P45.3 billion. Some 15 percent of expenditures, or about P8 billion, represent the budgetary deficit that must be supported by net borrowings.

It will be seen upon examination of the budget program and from the totality of our program of government for the decade of the 80′s that it is our conscious policy to steer away from facile and illu­sory solutions and to embrace instead the strategies and programs that will confront the basic problems.

We ambitiously invest in an accelerated energy development program because we are confident of its success. I have ordered that we now spend every year, for the next five years, a total of P5 billion, a doubling of the original program, for we must accelerate our development of the renew­able indigenous sources of energy. And because this promises our true deliverance from the energy crises, we are committed to it. We espouse in­creased production and improved productivity, both in agriculture and industry, because these are the true and lasting solutions to inflation and the trade imbalance.

We continue to stress infrastructure develop­ment, knowing from experience their vital import­ance to the acceleration of the economic effort.

Finally, we propose special attention to the quality and scope of social services to the eleven basic needs of man to ensure that our develop­ment will meet the test of social justice and democ­ratization.

It is, therefore, my privilege to now ask of the Batasan its support for this budget program and for its continued commitment to our entire pro­gram of the decade of the 80′s. (Applause)

Occasionally we forget our objectives and tar­gets. Let us devote our talents and time to the decisive issues of our day. Let us not be diverted from them by marginal, even if apparently popular, issues.

It is time to make some changes in both the Cabinet and the Armed Forces of the Philippines. It is my intention to consult the Members of the Batasang Pambansa before I make such changes.

We must simplify and rationalize further the tax system of the Philippines. For the present, there should be no additional tax on oil products. (Applause)

For the present, we must depend upon greater efficiency in the tax collecting arms of the government and, in addition, simplify and strengthen these organizations.

The trisectoral conference on income and wages must meet as soon as the oil prices are decided upon. We must reduce some of the taxes. We can start right now with an announcement that the highest rate of personal income tax is 70 per­cent. It is my intention to see to it that this is reduced to 60 percent. (Applause) But more than this, it is now necessary to review the entire tax system, to see to it that the middle income group and lower ranks of our people do not pay the same high rates, whether in income taxes or in indirect taxes as do the owners of such big corporations like Ayala and San Miguel.

We must seriously consider a gross personal income tax. (Applause) We must consider as part of our program a study of a simplified cap­ital gains tax privilege especially for stock market operations.

But we must give additional incentives to the officers and employees of the Bureaus of Internal Revenue and of Customs so that they may remain faithful to their trust.

In fairness to the BIR, may I say that in the year 1979 and 1980, so the record shows, there was an increase of PI0 billion in collections. Of this, P1 billion was due to the increase in the rates of taxes but P9 billion was due to increased efficiency in tax collection. (Applause)

The Ministry of Finance perhaps is due for congratulations for this, and so with the new leadership in the Bureau of Internal Revenue.

There has also been an increase in the collections by the Bureau of Customs notwithstanding the fact that there has been a reduction in the volume of our exports—in volume and value. Congratula­tions are also due to the Bureau of Customs. (Ap­plause)

So, the Batasan must continue to give vitality to the basic political unit, the barangay. Through the barangays we have been able to harness the smallest citizen for both political and socio-economic action. It has become the operational level of all our programs whatever such programs may be, be they security or economic.

I take occasion, therefore, to congratulate the barangays, their leaders and workers who have been instrumental in the success of our develop­ment program. Without them, all these achieve­ments that I speak of would not be there. The momentum must be maintained; the momentum of achievement must be kept. We cannot lose our orientation nor our inertia of achievement and progress.

It is inevitable that we choose the road of de­velopment in meeting the challenges and uncer­tainties of the times. For it will not do merely to state that the present crisis is rooted in circumstances beyond our control. It will not do to say that all nations are similarly beleaguered and embattled. Neither resolves the predicament in which we find ourselves.

We have made a tremendous start towards national development. To draw back now simply because certain factors seem inhospitable to efforts, or because greater demands will be made of all of us is to nurse the illusion that the future will be more propitious.

But this, at best, is an illusory hope. In the meantime, should we opt to wait, the costs of programs will irrevocably spiral and then again we shall be admonished to wait for a better time.

I say “no”. This cannot be the course of the nation.

The burden of national leadership in a time such as this is to provide vision in the midst of uncertainty; to hold out hope and confidence when threats and difficulties appear to mount, when danger confronts us in the face, and to clear a path through which the people may find refuge and security.

Out of this profound challenge to national life today, we ought to emerge as we did in the crises of the past, stronger in our resolve, surer of our­selves, and clearer in our purposes.

This is the historic charge of the party in which has been vested the mandate of the people: to provide direction, to give leadership, and to rally the nation to action. (Applause)

But always we must be one in the advocacy of this program, this bold program of action. This is the legacy of this Batasan, whatever be the party to which we belong.

And let it be the charge of the party in opposition to bring to the Batasan the light of its criticisms, so that we may then debate and discuss the policies, the programs and the actions we propose to the nation. That, too, is their legacy.

In this spirit, I now commend the Batasan to its historic work.

Thank you and good day.

Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law of 1988. Republic Act 6657

CHAPTER I
PRELIMINARY CHAPTER

SECTION 1. Title. – This Act shall be known as the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law of 1988.

SECTION 2. Declaration of Principles and Policies. – It is the policy of the State to pursue a Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP). The welfare of the landless farmers and farm workers will receive the highest consideration to promote social justice and to move the nation towards sound rural development and industrialization, and the establishment of owner cultivatorship of economic-sized farms as the basis of Philippine agriculture.

To this end, a more equitable distribution and ownership of land, with due regard to the rights of landowners to just compensation and to the ecological needs of the nation, shall be undertaken to provide farmers and farm workers with the opportunity to enhance their dignity and improve the quality of their lives through greater productivity of agricultural lands.

The agrarian reform program is founded on the right of farmers and regular farm workers, who are landless, to own directly or collectively the lands they till or, in the case of other farm workers, to receive a share of the fruits thereof. To this end, the State shall encourage the just distribution of all agricultural lands, subject to the priorities and retention limits set forth in this Act, having taken into account ecological, developmental, and equity considerations, and subject to the payment of just compensation. The State shall respect the right of small landowners and shall provide incentives for voluntary land-sharing.

The State shall recognize the right of farmers, farm workers and landowners, as well as cooperatives and other independent farmers’ organization, to participate in the planning, organization, and management of the program, and shall provide support to agriculture through appropriate technology and research, and adequate financial, production, marketing and other support services.chan robles virtual law library

The State shall apply the principles of agrarian reform or stewardship, whenever applicable, in accordance with law, in the disposition or utilization of other natural resources, including lands of the public domain, under lease or concession, suitable to agriculture, subject to prior rights, homestead rights of small settlers and the rights of indigenous communities to their ancestral lands.

The State may resettle landless farmers and farm workers in its own agricultural estates, which shall be distributed to them in the manner provided by law.

By means of appropriate incentives, the State shall encourage the formation and maintenance of economic-sized family farms to be constituted by individual beneficiaries and small landowners.

The State shall protect the rights of subsistence fishermen, especially of local communities, to the preferential use of communal marine and fishing resources, both inland and offshore. It shall provide support to such fishermen through appropriate technology and research, adequate financial, production and marketing assistance and other services, The State shall also protect, develop and conserve such resources. The protection shall extend to offshore fishing grounds of subsistence fishermen against foreign intrusion. Fishworkers shall receive a just share from their labor in the utilization of marine and fishing resources.

The State shall be guided by the principles that land has a social function and land ownership has a social responsibility. Owners of agricultural land have the obligation to cultivate directly or through labor administration the lands they own and thereby make the land productive.

The State shall provide incentives to landowners to invest the proceeds of the agrarian reform program to promote industrialization, employment and privatization of public sector enterprises. Financial instruments used as payment for lands shall contain features that shall enhance negotiability and acceptability in the marketplace.

The State may lease undeveloped lands of the public domain to qualified entities for the development of capital-intensive farms, traditional and pioneering crops especially those for exports subject to the prior rights of the beneficiaries under this Act.

SECTION 3. Definitions. – For the purpose of this Act, unless the context indicates otherwise:

(a) Agrarian Reform means the redistribution of lands, regardless of crops or fruits produced, to farmers and regular farm workers who are landless, irrespective of tenurial arrangement, to include the totality of factors and support services designed to lift the economic status of the beneficiaries and all other arrangements alternative to the physical redistribution of lands, such as production or profit-sharing, labor administration, and the distribution of shares of stock which will allow beneficiaries to receive a just share of the fruits of the lands they work.

(b) Agriculture, Agricultural Enterprise or Agricultural Activity means the cultivation of the soil, planting of crops, growing of fruit trees, including the harvesting of such farm products, and other farm activities and practices performed by a farmer in conjunction with such farming operations done by persons whether natural of juridical. (As amended by R. A. 7881)chan robles virtual law library

(c) Agricultural Land refers to land devoted to agricultural activity as defined in this Act and not classified as mineral, forest, residential, commercial or industrial land.

(d) Agrarian Dispute refers to any controversy relating to tenurial arrangements, whether leasehold, tenancy, stewardship or otherwise, over lands devoted to agriculture, including disputes concerning farm workers’ associations or representation of persons in negotiating, fixing, maintaining, changing or seeking to arrange terms or conditions of such tenurial arrangements.

It includes any controversy relating to compensation of lands acquired under this Act and other terms and conditions of transfer of ownership from landowners to farm workers, tenants and other agrarian reform beneficiaries, whether the disputants stand in the proximate relation of farm operator and beneficiary, landowner and tenant, or lessor and lessee.

(e) Idle or Abandoned Land refers to any agricultural land not cultivated, tilled or developed to produce any crop nor devoted to any specific economic purpose continuously for a period of three (3) years immediately prior to the receipt of notice of acquisition by the government as provided under this Act, but does not include land that has become permanently or regularly devoted to non-agricultural purposes. It does not include land which has become unproductive by reason of force majeure or any other fortuitous event: Provided, that prior to such event, such land was previously used for agricultural or other economic purposes.

(f) Farmer refers to a natural person whose primary livelihood is cultivation of land or the production of agricultural crops either by himself, or primarily with the assistance of his immediate farm household, whether the land is owned by him, or by another person under a leasehold or share tenancy agreement or arrangement with the owner thereof.

(g) Farmworker is a natural person who renders service for value as an employee or laborer in an agricultural enterprise or farm regardless of whether his compensation is paid on a daily, weekly, monthly or “pakyaw” basis. The term includes an individual whose work has ceased as a consequence of, or in connection with, a pending agrarian dispute who has not obtained a substantially equivalent and regular farm employment.

(h) Regular Farmworker is a natural person who is employed on a permanent basis by an agricultural enterprise or farm.

(i) Seasonal Farmworker is a natural person who is employed on a recurrent, periodic or intermittent basis by an agricultural enterprise or farm, whether as a permanent or a non-permanent laborer, such as “dumaan”, “sacada”, and the like.

(j) Other Farmworker is a farmworker who does not fall under paragraphs (g), (h) and (i).

(k) Cooperatives shall refer to organizations composed primarily of small agricultural producers, farmers, farm workers, or other agrarian reform beneficiaries who voluntarily organize themselves for the purpose of pooling land, human, technological, financial or other economic resources, and operated on the principle of one member, one vote. A juridical person may be a member of a cooperative, with the same rights and duties as a natural person.

CHAPTER II
COVERAGE

SEC. 4. Scope. – The Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law of 1988 shall cover, regardless of tenurial arrangement and commodity produced, all public and private agricultural lands as provided in Proclamation No. 131 and Executive Order No. 229, including other lands of the public domain suitable for agriculture.

More specifically, the following lands are covered by the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program:

(a) All alienable and disposable lands of the public domain devoted to or suitable for agriculture. No reclassification of forest or mineral lands to agricultural lands shall be undertaken after the approval of this Act until Congress, taking into account ecological, developmental and equity considerations, shall have determined by law, the specific limits of the public domain;

b) All lands of the public domain in excess to the specific limits as determined by Congress in the preceding paragraph;

c) All other lands owned by the Government devoted to or suitable for agriculture; andchan robles virtual law library

d) All private lands devoted to or suitable for agriculture regardless of the agricultural products raised or that can be raised thereon.

SEC. 5. Schedule of Implementation. – The distribution of all lands covered by this Act shall be implemented immediately and completed within ten (10) years from the effectivity thereof.

SEC. 6. Retention Limits. – Except as otherwise provided in this Act, no person may own or retain, directly, any public or private agricultural land, the size of which shall vary according to factors governing a viable family-sized farm, such as commodity produced, terrain, infrastructure, and soil fertility as determined by the Presidential Agrarian Reform Council (PARC) created hereunder, but in no case shall the retention by the landowner exceed five (5) hectares. Three (3) hectares may be awarded to each child of the landowner, subject to the following qualifications: (1) that he is at least fifteen (15) years of age; and (2) that he is actually tilling the land or directly managing the farm: Provided, That landowners whose lands have been covered by Presidential Decree No. 27 shall be allowed to keep the area originally retained by them thereunder; Provided, further, That original homestead grantees or direct compulsory heirs who still own the original homestead at the time of the approval of this Act shall retain the same areas as long as they continue to cultivate said homestead.

The right to choose the area to be retained, which shall be compact or contiguous, shall pertain, to the landowner: Provided, however, That in case the area selected for retention by the landowner is tenanted, the tenant shall have the option to choose whether to remain therein or be a beneficiary in the same or another agricultural land with similar or comparable features. In case the tenant chooses to remain in the retained area, he shall be considered a leaseholder and shall lose his right to be a beneficiary under this Act. In case the tenant chooses to be a beneficiary in another agricultural land, he loses his right as a leaseholder to the land retained by the landowner. The tenant must exercise this option within a period of one (1) year from the time the landowner manifests his choice of the area for retention.

In all cases, the security of tenure of the farmers or farm workers on the land prior to the approval of this Act shall be respected.

Upon the effectivity of this Act, any sale, disposition, lease, management contract or transfer of possession of private lands executed by the original landowner in violation of this Act shall be null and void: Provided, however, That those executed prior to this Act shall be valid only when registered with the Register of Deeds within a period of three (3) months after the effectivity of this Act . Thereafter, all Registers of Deeds shall inform the DAR within thirty (30) days of any transaction involving agricultural lands in excess of five (5) hectares.

SEC. 7. Priorities. – The DAR, in coordination with the PARC shall plan and program the acquisition and distribution of all agricultural lands through a period of ten (10) years from the effectivity of this Act. Lands shall be acquired and distributed as follows:

Phase One: Rice and corn lands under Presidential Decree No. 27; all idle or abandoned lands; all private lands voluntarily offered by the owners for agrarian reform; all lands foreclosed by government financial institution; all lands acquired by the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG); and all other lands owned by the government devoted to or suitable for agriculture, which shall be acquired and distributed immediately upon the effectivity of this Act, with the implementation to be completed within a period of not more than four (4) years;

Phase two: All alienable and disposable public agricultural lands; all arable public agricultural lands under agro-forest, pasture and agricultural leases already cultivated and planted to crops in accordance with Section 6, Article XIII of the Constitution; all public agricultural lands which are to be opened for new development and resettlement; and all private agricultural lands in excess of fifty (50) hectares, insofar as the excess hectarage is concerned, to implement principally the right of farmers and regular farm workers, who are landless, to own directly or collectively the lands they till, which shall be distributed immediately upon the effectivity of this Act, with the implementation to be completed within a period of not more than four (4) years.

Phase Three: All other private agricultural lands commencing with large landholdings and proceeding to medium and small landholdings under the following schedule:

a) Landholdings above twenty-four (24) hectares up to fifty (50) hectares, to begin on the fourth (4th) year from the effectivity of this Act and to be completed within three (3) years; and

b) Landholdings from the retention limit up to twenty-four (24) hectares, to begin on the sixth (6th) year from the effectivity of this Act and to be completed within four (4) years; to implement principally the right of farmers and regular farmworkers who are landless, to own directly or collectively the lands they till.

The schedule of acquisition and redistribution of all agricultural lands covered by this program shall be made in accordance with the above order of priority, which shall be provided in the implementing rules to be prepared by the Presidential Agrarian Reform Council (PARC), taking into consideration the following: the need to distribute lands to the tiller at the earliest practicable time; the need to enhance agricultural productivity; and the availability of funds and resources to implement and support the program.

In any case, the PARC, upon recommendation by the Provincial Agrarian Reform Coordinating Committee (PARCCOM), may declare certain provinces or regions as priority land reform areas, in which case the acquisition and distribution of private agricultural lands therein may be implemented ahead of the above schedules. In effecting the transfer within these guidelines, priority must be given to lands that are tenanted.

The PARC shall establish guidelines to implement the above priorities and distribution scheme, including the determination of who are qualified beneficiaries: Provided, That an owner-tiller may be a beneficiary of the land he does not own but is actually cultivating to the extent of the difference between the area of the land he owns and the award ceiling of three (3) hectares.

SEC. 8. Multinational Corporations. – All lands of the public domain leased, held or possessed by multinational corporations or associations, and other lands owned by the government or government-owned or controlled corporations, associations, institutions or entities, devoted to existing and operational agribusiness or agro-industrial enterprises, operated by multinational corporations and associations, shall be programmed for acquisition and distribution immediately upon the effectivity of this Act, with the implementation to be completed within three (3) years.

Lands covered by the paragraph immediately preceding, under lease, management, grower or service contracts, and the like, shall be disposed of as follows:

(a) Lease, management, grower or service contracts covering such lands covering an aggregate area in excess of 1,000 hectares, leased or held by foreign individuals in excess of 500 hectares are deemed amended to confirm with the limits set forth in Section 3 of Article XIII of the Constitution.

(b) Contracts covering areas not in excess of 1,000 hectares in the case of such individuals shall be allowed to continue under their original terms and conditions but not beyond August 29, 1992, or their valid termination, whichever comes sooner, after which, such agreements shall continue only when confirmed by the appropriate government agency. Such contracts shall likewise continue even after the land has been transferred to beneficiaries or awardees thereof, which transfer shall be immediately commenced and implemented within the period of three (3) years mentioned in paragraph 1 hereof.

(c) In no case will such leases and other agreements now being implemented extend beyond August 29, 1992, when all lands subject hereof shall have been distributed completely to qualified beneficiaries or awardees. Such agreements can continue thereafter only under a new contract between the government or qualified beneficiaries or awardees, on the one hand, and said enterprises, on the other.chan robles virtual law library

Lands leased, held or possessed by multinational corporations, owned by private individuals and private non-governmental corporations, associations, institutions, and entities, citizens of the Philippines, shall be subject to immediate compulsory acquisition and distribution upon the expiration of the applicable lease, management grower of service contract in effect as of August 29, 1987, or otherwise, upon its valid termination, whichever comes sooner, but not later than after ten (10) years following the effectivity of this Act . However, during the said period of effectivity, the government shall take steps to acquire these lands for immediate distribution thereafter.

In general, lands shall be distributed directly to the individual worker-beneficiaries. In case it is not economically feasible and sound to divide the land, then they shall form a workers’ cooperative or association which will deal with the corporation or business association or any other proper party, for the purpose of entering into a lease or growers agreement and for all other legitimate purposes. Until a new agreement is entered into by and between the workers’ cooperative or association and the corporation or business association or any other proper party, any agreement existing at the time this Act takes effect between the former and the previous landowner shall be respected by both the workers’ cooperative or association and the corporation, business association or such other proper party. In no case shall the implementation or application of this Act justify or result in the reduction of status or diminution of any benefits received or enjoyed by the worker-beneficiaries, or in which they may have a vested right, at the time this Act becomes effective.

The provision of Section 32 of this Act, with regard to production and income-sharing shall apply to farms operated by multinational corporations.

During the transition period, the new owners shall be assisted in their efforts to learn modern technology in production. Enterprises which show a willingness and commitment and good faith efforts to impart voluntarily such advanced technology will be given preferential treatment where feasible.

In no case shall a foreign corporation, association, entity or individual enjoy any rightr or privileges better than those enjoyed by a domestic corporation, association, entity or individual.

SEC. 9. Ancestral Lands. – For purposes of this Act, ancestral lands of each indigenous cultural community shall include, but not be limited to, lands in the actual, continuous and open possession and occupation of the community and its members: Provided, That the Torrens System shall be respected.

The right of these communities to their ancestral lands shall be protected to ensure their economic, social and cultural well-being. In line with the other principles of self-determination and autonomy, the systems of land ownership, land use, and the modes of settling land disputes of all these communities must be recognized and respected.

Any provision of law to the contrary notwithstanding, the PARC may suspend the implementation of this Act with respect to ancestral lands for the purpose of identifying and delineating such lands: Provided, That in the autonomous regions, the respective legislatures may enact their own laws on ancestral domain subject to the provisions of the Constitution and the principles enunciated in this Act and other national laws.

SEC. 10. Exemptions and Exclusions.-

(a) Lands actually, directly and exclusively used for parks, wildlife, forest reserves, reforestation, fish sanctuaries and breeding grounds, watersheds and mangroves shall be exempt from the coverage of this Act.

(b) Private lands actually, directly and exclusively used for prawn farms and fishponds shall be exempt from the coverage of this Act: Provided, That said prawn farms and fishponds have not been distributed and Certificate of Land Ownership Award (CLOA) issued under the Agrarian Reform Program.

In cases where the fishponds or prawn farms have been subjected to the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law, by voluntary offer to sell, or commercial farms deferment or notices of compulsory acquisition, a simple and absolute majority of the actual regular workers or tenants must consent to the exemption within one (1) year from the effectivity of this Act. When the workers or tenants do not agree to this exemption, the fishponds or prawn farms shall be distributed collectively to the worker-beneficiaries or tenants who shall form cooperative or association to manage the same.

In cases where the fishponds or prawn farms have not been subjected to the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law, the consent of the farmworkers shall no longer be necessary; however, the provision of Section 32-A hereof on incentives shall apply.

(c) Lands actually, directly and exclusively used and found to be necessary for national defense, school sites and campuses, including experimental farm stations operated by public or private schools for educational purposes, seeds and seedlings research and pilot production center, church sites and convents appurtenant thereto, mosque sites and Islamic centers appurtenant thereto, communal burial grounds and cemeteries, penal colonies and penal farms actually worked by the inmates, government and private research and quarantine centers and all lands with eighteen percent (18%) slope and over, except those already developed, shall be exempt from the coverage of this Act.(As amended by R. A. 7881)

SEC. 11. Commercial Farming. – Commercial farms which are private agricultural lands devoted to salt beds, fruit farms, orchards, vegetable and cut-flower farms, and cacao, coffee and rubber plantations, shall be subject to immediate compulsory acquisition and distribution after ten (10) years from the effectivity of this Act. In the case of new farms, the ten-year period shall begin from the first year of commercial production and operation, as determined by the DAR. During the ten-year period, the Government shall initiate steps necessary to acquire these lands, upon payment of just compensation for the land and the improvements thereon, preferably in favor of organized cooperatives or associations, which shall thereafter manage the said lands for the workers-beneficiaries.(As amended by R. A. 7881)

CHAPTER III
IMPROVEMENT OF TENURIAL AND LABOR RELATIONS

SEC. 12. Determination of Lease Rentals. – In order to protect and improve the tenurial and economic status of the farmers in tenanted lands under the retention limit and lands not yet acquired under this Act, the DAR is mandated to determine and fix immediately the lease rentals thereof in accordance with Section 34 of R. A. No. 3844 as amended : Provided, That the DAR shall immediately and periodically review and adjust the rental structure for different crops, including rice and corn, of different regions in order to improve progressively the conditions of the farmer, tenant or lessee.

SEC. 12-A. Incentives. – Individuals and entities owning or operating fishpond and prawn farms are hereby mandated to execute within six (6) months from the effectivity of this Act, an incentive plan with their regular fishpond or prawn farm workers or fishpond or prawn farm workers’ organization, if any, whereby seven point five percent (7.5%) of their net profit before tax from the operation of the fishpond or prawn farms are distributed within sixty (60) days at the end of the fiscal year as compensation to regular and other pond workers in such ponds over and above the compensation they currently receive.

In order to safeguard the right of the regular fishpond or prawn farm workers under the incentives plan, the book of the fishpond or prawn farm owners shall be subject to periodic audit or inspection by certified public accountants chosen by the workers.
The foregoing provision shall not apply to agricultural lands subsequently converted to fishponds or prawn farms provided the size of the land converted does not exceed the retention limit of the landowner. (As added by R. A. 7881)

SEC. 13. Production-Sharing Plan. – Any enterprise adopting the scheme provided for in Section 32 or operating under a production venture, lease, management contract or other similar arrangement and any farm covered by Sections 8 and 11 hereof is hereby mandated to execute within ninety (90) days from the effectivity of this Act, a production-sharing plan under guidelines prescribed by the appropriate government agency.

Nothing herein shall be construed to sanction the diminution of any benefits such as salaries, bonuses, leaves and working conditions granted to the employee-beneficiaries under existing laws, agreements, and voluntary practice by the enterprise, nor shall the enterprise and its employee-beneficiaries be prevented from entering into any agreement with terms more favorable to the latter.chan robles virtual law library

CHAPTER IV
REGISTRATION

SEC. 14. Registration of Landowners. – Within one hundred eighty (180) days from the effectivity of this Act, natural or juridical, including government entities, that own or claim to own agricultural lands, whether in their names or in the name of others, except those who have already registered pursuant to Executive Order No. 229, who shall be entitled to such incentives as may be provided for by PARC, shall file a sworn statement in the proper assessors office in the form to be prescribed by the DAR, stating the following information:

(a) The description and area of the property;
(b) The average gross income from the property for at least three (3) years;
(c) The names of the tenants and farm workers therein;
(d) The crops planted in the property and the area covered by each crop as of June 1,1987;
(e) The terms of mortgages, leases, and management contracts subsisting as of June 1, 1987; and
(f) The latest declared market value of the land as determined by the city or provincial assessor.

SEC. 15. Registration of Beneficiaries. – The DAR in coordination with the Barangay Agrarian Reform Committee (BARC) as organized in this Act, shall register all agricultural lessees, tenants and farmworkers who are qualified to be beneficiaries with the assistance of the BARC and the DAR shall provide the following data:

(a) Names and members of their immediate farm household;
(b) Location and area of the land they work;
(c) Crops planted; and
(d) Their share in the harvest or amount of rental paid or wages received.

A copy of the registry or list of all potential CARP beneficiaries in the barangay shall be posted in the barangay hall, school or other public buildings in the barangay where it shall be open to inspection by the public at all reasonable hours.

CHAPTER V
LAND ACQUISITION

SEC. 16. Procedure for Acquisition of Private Lands.- For purposes of acquisition of private lands, the following procedures shall be followed:

(a) After having identified the land, the landowners and the beneficiaries, the DAR shall send its notice to acquire the land to the owners thereof, by personal delivery or registered mail, and post the same in a conspicuous place in the municipal building and barangay hall of the place where the property is located. Said notice shall contain the offer of the DAR to pay a corresponding value in accordance with the valuation set forth in Sections 17, 18, and other pertinent provisions hereof.

(b) Within thirty (30) days from the date of receipt of written notice by personal delivery or registered mail, the landowner, his administrator or representative shall inform the DAR of his acceptance or rejection of the offer.

(c) If the landowner accepts the offer of the DAR, the LBP shall pay the landowner the purchase price of the land within thirty (30) days after he executes and delivers a deed of transfer in favor of the Government and surrenders the Certificate of Title and other muniments of title.

(d) In case of rejection or failure to reply, the DAR shall conduct summary administrative proceedings to determine the compensation of the land by requiring the landowner, the LBP and other interested parties to summit evidence as to the just compensation for the land, within fifteen (15) days from the receipt of the notice. After the expiration of the above period, the matter is deemed submitted for decision. The DAR shall decide the case within thirty (30) days after it is submitted for decision.

(e) Upon receipt by the landowner of the corresponding payment or in case of rejection or no response from the landowner, upon the deposit with an accessible bank designated by the DAR of the compensation in cash or LBP bonds in accordance with this Act, the DAR shall take immediate possession of the land and shall request the proper Register of Deeds to issue a Transfer Certificate of Title (TCT) in the name of the Republic of the Philippines. The DAR shall thereafter proceed with the redistribution of the land to the qualified beneficiaries.

(f) Any party who disagrees with the decision may bring the matter to the court of proper jurisdiction for final determination of just compensation.

CHAPTER VI
COMPENSATION

SEC. 17. Determination of Just Compensation. – In determining just compensation, the cost of acquisition of the land, the current value of like properties, its nature, actual use and income, the sworn valuation by the owner, the tax declarations, and the assessment made by government assessors, shall be considered. The social and economic benefits contributed by the farmers and the farmworkers and by government to the property as well as the non-payment of taxes or loans secured from any government financing institution on the said land shall be considered as additional factors to determine its valuation.

SEC. 18. Valuation and Mode of Compensation. – The LBP shall compensate the landowner in such amount as may be agreed upon by the landowner and the DAR and LBP or as may be finally determined by the court as just compensation for the land.

The compensation shall be paid in one of the following modes at the option of the landowner:

(1) Cash payment, under the following terms and conditions:

(a) For lands above fifty (50) hectares, insofar as the excess hectarage isconcerned – Twenty-five percent (25%) cash, the balance to be paid in government financial instruments negotiable at any time.

(b) For lands above twenty-four hectares and up to fifty (50) hectares – Thirty percent (30%) cash, the balance to be paid in government financial instruments negotiable at any time.

(c) For lands twenty-four (24) hectares and below – Thirty-five percent (35%) cash, the balance to be paid in government financial instruments negotiable at any time.

(2) Shares of stock in government-owned or controlled corporations, LBP preferred shares, physical assets or other qualified investments in accordance with guidelines set by the PARC;

(3) Tax credits which can be used against any tax liability;

(4) LBP bonds, which shall have the following features:

(a) Market interest rates aligned with 91-day treasury bill rates. Ten percent (10%) of the face value of the bonds shall mature every year from the date of issuance until the tenth (10th) year: Provided, That should the landowner choose to forego the cash portion, whether in full or in part, he shall be paid correspondingly in LBP bonds;

(b) Transferability and negotiability. Such LBP bonds may be used by the landowner, his successors-in-interest or his assigns, up to the amount of their face value for any of the following:

(i) Acquisition of land or other real properties of the government, including assets under the Assets Privatization Program and other assets foreclosed by government financial institution in the same province or region where the lands for which the bonds were paid are situated;

(ii) Acquisition of shares of stock of government-owned or controlled corporations or shares or stock owned by the government in private corporations;chan robles virtual law library

(iii) Substitution for surety or bail bonds for the provisional release of accused persons, or for performance bonds;

(iv) Security for loans with any government financial institution, provided the proceeds of the loans shall be invested in an economic enterprise, preferably in a small and medium-scale industry, in the same province or region as the land for which the bonds are paid;

(v) Payment for various taxes and fees to the government: Provided, That the use of these bonds for these purposes will be limited to a certain percentage of the outstanding balance of the financial instrument: Provided, further, That the PARC shall determine the percentages mentioned above;

(vi) Payment for tuition fees of the immediate family of the original bondholder in government universities, colleges, trade schools and other institutions;

(vii) Payment for fees of the immediate family of the original bondholder in government hospitals; and

(viii) Such other uses as the PARC may from time to time allow.

In case of extraordinary inflation, the PARC shall take appropriate measures to protect the economy.

SEC. 19. Incentives for Voluntary Offers for Sale. – Landowners other than banks and other financial institutions who voluntarily offer their lands for sale shall be entitled to an additional five percent (5%) cash payment.

SEC. 20. Voluntary Land Transfer. – Landowners of agricultural lands subject to acquisition under this Act may enter into a voluntary arrangement for direct transfer of their lands to qualified beneficiaries subject to the following guidelines:

(a) All notices for voluntary land transfer must be submitted to the DAR within the first year of the implementation of the CARP. Negotiations between the landowners and qualified beneficiaries covering any voluntary land transfer which remain unresolved after one (1) year shall not be recognized and such land shall instead be acquired by the government and transferred pursuant to this Act.

(b) The terms and conditions of such transfer shall not be less favorable to the transferee than those of the government ‘s standing offer to purchase from the landowner and to resell to the beneficiaries, if such offers have been made and are fully known to both parties.

(c) The voluntary agreement shall include sanctions for non-compliance by either party and shall be duly recorded and its implementation monitored by the DAR.

SEC. 21. Payment of Compensation by Beneficiaries Under Voluntary Land Transfer.- Direct payment in cash or in kind may be made by the farmer-beneficiary to the landowner under terms to be mutually agreed upon by both parties, which shall be binding upon them, upon registration with and approval by the DAR. Said approval shall be considered given, unless notice of disapproval is received by the farmer-beneficiary within 30 days from the date of registration.In the event they cannot agree on the price of the land, the procedure for compulsory acquisition as provided in Section 16 shall apply. The LBP shall extend financing to the beneficiaries for purposes of acquiring the land.

CHAPTER VII
LAND REDISTRIBUTION

SEC. 22. Qualified Beneficiaries. – The lands covered by the CARP shall be distributed as much as possible to landless residents of the same barangay, or in the absence thereof, landless residents of the same municipality in the following order of priority:

(a) agricultural lessees and share tenants;
(b) regular farm workers;
(c) seasonal farm workers;
(d) other farm workers;
(e) actual tillers or occupants of public lands;
(f) collective or cooperatives of the above beneficiaries; and
(g) others directly working on the land.

Provided, however, That the children of landowners who are qualified under Section 6 of this Act shall be given preference in the distribution of the land of their parents; and: Provided, further, that actual tenant -tillers in the landholding shall not be ejected or removed therefrom.

Beneficiaries under Presidential Decree No. 27 who have culpably sold, disposed of, or abandoned their land are disqualified to become beneficiaries under their program.

A basic qualification of a beneficiary shall be his willingness, aptitude and ability to cultivate and make land as productive as possible. The DAR shall adopt a system of monitoring the record or performance of each beneficiary, so that any beneficiary guilty of negligence or misuse of the land or any support extended to him shall forfeit his right to continue as such beneficiary. The DAR shall submit periodic reports on the performance of the beneficiaries to the PARC.

If, due to landowner’s retention rights or to the number of tenants, lessees, or workers on the land, there is not enough land to accommodate any or some of them, they may be granted ownership of other lands available for distribution under this Act, at the option of the beneficiaries.

Farmers already in place and those not accommodated in the distribution of privately-owned lands will be given preferential rights in the distribution of lands from the public domain.

SEC. 23. Distribution Limit. – No qualified beneficiary may own more than three (3) hectares of agricultural land.

SEC. 24. Award to Beneficiaries. – The rights and responsibilities of the beneficiary shall commence from the time the DAR makes an award of the land to him, which award shall be completed within one hundred eighty (180) days from the time the DAR takes actual possession of the land. Ownership of the beneficiary shall be evidenced by a Certificate of Land Ownership Award, which shall contain the restrictions and conditions provided for in this Act, and shall be recorded in the Register of Deeds concerned and annotated on the Certificate of Title.

SEC. 25. Award Ceilings for Beneficiaries. – Beneficiaries shall be awarded an area not exceeding three (3) hectares, which may cover a contiguous tract of land or several parcels of land cumulated up to the prescribed award limits.

For purposes of this Act, a landless beneficiary is one who owns less than three (3) hectares of agricultural land. The beneficiaries may opt for collective ownership, such as co-workers or farmers’ cooperative or some other form of collective organization: Provided, That the total area that may be awarded shall not exceed the total number of co-workers or members of the cooperative or collective organization multiplied by the award limit above prescribed, except in meritorious cases as determined by the PARC. Title to the property shall be issued in the name of the co-owners or the cooperative or collective organization as the case may be.

SEC. 26. Payment by Beneficiaries. – Lands awarded pursuant to this Act shall be paid for by the beneficiaries to the LBP in thirty (30) annual amortizations at six percent (6%) interest per annum. The payments for the firs three (3) years after the award may be at reduced amounts as established by the PARC : Provided, That the first five (5) annual payments may not be more than five percent (5%) of the value of the annual gross production is paid as established by the DAR. Should the scheduled annual payments after the fifth year exceed ten percent (10) of the annual gross production and the failure to produce accordingly is not due to the beneficiary’s fault, the LBP may reduce the interest rate or reduce the principal obligation to make the payment affordable.

The LBP shall have a lien by way of mortgage on the land awarded to beneficiary and this mortgage may be foreclosed by the LBP for non-payment of an aggregate of three (3) annual amortizations. The LBP shall advise the DAR of such proceedings and the latter shall subsequently award the forfeited landholding to other qualified beneficiaries. A beneficiary whose land as provided herein has been foreclosed shall thereafter be permanently disqualified from becoming a beneficiary under this Act.

SEC. 27. Transferability of Awarded Lands. – Lands acquired by beneficiaries under this Act may not be sold, transferred or conveyed except through hereditary succession, or to the government, or to the LBP, or to other qualified beneficiaries for a period of ten (10) years: Provided, however, That the children or the spouse of the transferor shall have a right to repurchase the land from the government or LBP within a period of two (2) years. Due notice of the availability of the land shall be given by the LBP to the Barangay Agrarian Reform Committee (BARC) of the barangay where the land is situated. The Provincial Agrarian Coordinating Committee (PARCCOM), as herein provided, shall, in turn, be given due notice thereof by the BARC.
If the land has not yet been fully paid by the beneficiary, the right to the land may be transferred or conveyed, with prior approval of the DAR, to any heir of the beneficiary or to any other beneficiary who, as a condition for such transfer or conveyance, shall cultivate the land himself. Failing compliance herewith, the land shall be transferred to the LBP which shall give due notice of the availability of the land in the manner specified in the immediately preceding paragraph.
In the event of such transfer to the LBP, the latter shall compensate the beneficiary in one lump sum for the amounts the latter has already paid, together with the value of improvements he has made on the land.

SEC. 28 . Standing Crops at the Time of Acquisition. – The landowner shall retain his share of any standing crops unharvested at the time the DAR shall take possession of the land under Section 16 of this Act, and shall be given a reasonable time to harvest the same.

CHAPTER VIII
CORPORATE FARMS

SEC. 29. Farms Owned or Operated by Corporations or Other Business Associations. – In the case of farms owned or operated by corporations or other business associations, the following rules shall be observed by the PARC.

In general, lands shall be distributed directly to the individual worker-beneficiaries.

In case it is not economically feasible and sound to divide the land, then it shall be owned collectively by the worker-beneficiaries who shall form a workers’ cooperative or association which will deal with the corporation or business association. Until a new agreement is entered into by and between the workers’ cooperative or association and the corporation or business association, any agreement existing at the time this Act takes effect between the former and the previous landowner shall be respected by both the workers’ cooperative or association and the corporation or business association.

SEC. 30. Homelots and Farmlots for Members of Cooperatives. – The individual members of the cooperatives or corporations mentioned in the preceding section shall be provided with homelots and small farmlots for their family use, to be taken from the land owned by the cooperative or corporation.

SEC. 31. Corporate Landowners. – Corporate landowners may voluntarily transfer ownership over their agricultural landholdings to the Republic of the Philippines pursuant to Section 20 hereof or to qualified beneficiaries, under such terms and conditions consistent with this Act, as they may agree upon, subject to confirmation by the DAR.

Upon certification by the DAR, corporations owning agricultural lands may give their qualified beneficiaries the right to purchase such proportion of the capital stock of the corporation that the agricultural land, actually devoted to agricultural activities, bears in relation to the company’s total assets, under such terms and conditions as may be agreed upon by them. In no case shall the compensation received by the workers at the time the shares of stocks are distributed be reduced. The same principle shall be applied to associations, with respect to their equity or participation.

Corporations or associations which voluntarily divest a proportion of their capital stock, equity or participation in favor of their workers or other qualified beneficiaries under this section shall be deemed to have complied with the provisions of this Act: Provided, That the following condition are complied with:

(a) In order to safeguard the right of beneficiaries who own shares of stocks to dividends and other financial benefits, the books of the corporation or association shall be subject to periodic audit by certified public accountants chosen by the beneficiaries;

(b) Irrespective of the value of their equity in the corporation or association, the beneficiaries shall be assured of at least one (1) representative in the board of directors, or in a management or executive committee, if one exists, of the corporation or association;

(c) Any shares acquired by such workers and beneficiaries shall have the same rights and features as all other shares; and

(d) Any transfer of shares of stocks by the original beneficiaries shall be void ab initio unless said transaction is in favor of a qualified and registered beneficiary within the same corporation.

If within two (2) years from the approval of this Act, the land or stock transfer envisioned above is not made or realized or the plan for such stock distribution approved by the PARC within the same period, the agricultural land of the corporate owners or corporation shall be subject to the compulsory coverage of this Act.

SEC. 32. Production-Sharing. – Pending final land transfer, individuals or entities owning, or operating under lease or management contract, agricultural lands are hereby mandated to execute a production-sharing plan with their farmworkers or farmworkers’ organization, if any, whereby three percent (3%) of the gross sales from the production of such lands are distributed within sixty (60) days at the end of the fiscal year as compensation to regular and other farmworkers in such lands over and above the compensation they currently receive: Provided, That these individuals or entities realize gross sales in excess of five million pesos per annum unless the DAR, upon proper application, determines a lower ceiling.chan robles virtual law library

In the event that the individual or entity realizes a profit, an additional ten percent (10%) of the net profit after tax shall be distributed to said regular and other farmworkers within ninety days at the end of the fiscal year. To forestall any disruption in the normal operation of lands to be turned over to the farmworker-beneficiaries mentioned above, a transitory period, the length of which shall be determined by the DAR, will be established.

During this transitory period, at least one percent (1%) of the gross sales of the entity shall be distributed to the managerial, supervisory and technical group in place at the time of the effectivity of this Act, as compensation for such transitory managerial and technical function it will perform, pursuant to an agreement that the farmworker-beneficiaries and the managerial, supervisory and technical group may conclude, subject to the approval of the DAR.

SEC. 33. Payment of Shares of Cooperative or Association. – Shares of a cooperative or association acquired by farmers-beneficiaries or workers-beneficiaries shall be fully paid for in an amount corresponding to the valuation as determined in the immediately succeeding section. The landowner and the LBP shall assist the farmer-beneficiaries and worker-beneficiaries in the payment for said shares by providing credit financing.

SEC. 34. Valuation of Lands. – A valuation scheme for the land shall be formulated by the PARC, taking into account the factors enumerated in Section 17, in addition to the need to stimulate the growth of cooperatives and the objective of fostering responsible participation of the workers-beneficiaries in the creation of wealth.

In the determination of a price that is just not only to the individual but to society as will, the PARC shall consult closely with the landowner and the workers-beneficiaries.

In case of disagreement, the price determined by the PARC, if accepted by the workers-beneficiaries, shall be followed, without prejudice to the landowner’s right to petition the Special Agrarian Court to resolve the issue of valuation.

CHAPTER IX
SUPPORT SERVICES

SEC. 35. Creation of Support Services Office. – There is hereby created the Office of Support Services under the DAR to be headed by an Undersecretary.

The office shall provide general support and coordinative services in the implementation of the program, particularly in carrying out the provisions of the following services to farmer beneficiaries and affected landowners:

(1) Irrigation facilities, especially second crop or dry season irrigation facilities;

(2) Infrastructure development and public works projects in areas and settlement that come under agrarian reform, and for this purpose, the preparation of the physical development plan of such settlements providing suitable barangay sites, potable water and power resources, irrigation systems, seeds and seedling banks, post harvest facilities, and other facilities for a sound agricultural development plan. For the purpose of providing the aforecited infrastructure and facilities, the DAR is authorized to enter into contracts with interested private parties on long term basis or through joint venture agreements or build-operate-transfer scheme:

(3) Government subsidies for the use of irrigation facilities

(4) Price support and guarantee for all agricultural produce;

(5) Extending to small landowners, farmers and farmers’ organizations the necessary credit, like concessional and collateral-free loans, for agro-industrialization based on social collaterals like the guarantees of farmers’ organizations;

(6) Promoting, developing and extending financial assistance to small and medium-scale industries in agrarian reform areas;

(7) Assigning sufficient numbers of agricultural extension workers to farmers’ organization;

(8) Undertake research, development and dissemination of information on agrarian reform, plants and crops best suited for cultivation and marketing, and low cost and ecologically sound farm inputs and technologies to minimize reliance on expensive and imported agricultural inputs;

(9) Development of cooperative management skills through intensive training;chan robles virtual law library

(9) Assistance in the identification of ready markets for agricultural produce and training in the other various aspects of marketing;

(10) Conduct and effective information dissemination system through the Department of Agriculture to promote marketing and minimize spoilage of agricultural produce and products;

(11) Create a credit guarantee fund for agricultural landowners that will enhance the collateral value of agricultural lands that are affected or will be affected by coverage under the agrarian reform program; and

(12) Administration, operation, management and funding of support services programs and projects including pilot projects and models related to agrarian reform as developed by the DAR. (As amended by R. A. 7905)

SEC. 36. Funding for Support Services. – In order to cover the expenses and cost of support, at least twenty-five percent (25%) of all appropriations for agrarian reform shall immediately be set aside and made available for this purpose: Provided, That for the next five (5) years, a minimum of one (1) Agrarian Reform Community (ARC) shall be established by the DAR, in coordination with the local government units, non-governmental organizations and people’s organizations in each legislative district with a predominant agricultural population: Provided, further, That the areas in which the ARCs are to be established shall have been fully subjected under this law.

For this purpose, an Agrarian Reform Community shall be defined as a barangay or a cluster of barangays primarily composed and managed by Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries who shall be willing to be organized and undertake the integrated development of an area and/or their organizations/cooperatives. In each community, the DAR, together with the agencies and organizations above mentioned, shall identify the farmers’ association, cooperative or their respective federations approved by the farmers-beneficiaries that shall take the lead in the agricultural development of the area. In addition, the DAR shall be authorized to package proposals and receive grants, aids and other forms of financial assistance from any source. (As amended by R. A. 7905)

SEC. 37. Support Services to the Beneficiaries. – The PARC shall ensure that support services to farmer-beneficiaries are provided, such as:

(a) Land surveys and titling;
(b) Liberalized terms of credit facilities and production loans;
(c) Extension services by way of planting, cropping, production and post-harvest technology transfer as well as
marketing and management assistance and support to cooperatives and farmer organization;
(d) Infrastructure such as access trails, mini-dams, public utilities, marketing and storage facilities; and
(e) Research, production and use of organic fertilizers and other local substances necessary to farming and cultivation.

The PARC shall formulate policies to ensure that support services to farmer-beneficiaries shall be provided at all stages of land reform.

The Bagong Kilusang Kabuhayan sa Kaunlaran (BKKK) Secretariat shall be transferred and attached to the LBP, for its supervision, including all its applicable and existing funds, personnel, properties, equipment and records.

Misuse or diversion of the financial and support services herein provided shall result in sanction against the beneficiary guilty thereof, including the forfeiture of the land transferred to him or lesser sanctions as may be provided by the PARC, without prejudice to criminal prosecution.

SEC. 38. Support Services to Landowners. – The PARC, with the assistance of such other government agencies and instrumentalities as it may direct, shall provide landowners affected by the CARP and proper agrarian reform programs with the following services:

(a) Investment information, financial and counseling assistance;

(b) Facilities, programs and schemes for the conversion or exchange of bonds issued for payment of the lands acquired with stocks and bonds issued by the National Government, the central bank and other government institutions and instrumentalities;

(c) Marketing of LBP bonds, as well as promoting the marketability of said bonds in traditional and non-traditional financial markets and stock exchanges;

(d) Other services designed to utilize productively the proceeds of the sale of such lands for rural industrialization.

A landowner who invests in rural-based industries shall be entitled to the incentives granted to a registered enterprise engaged in a pioneer or preferred area of investment as provided for in the Omnibus Investment Code of 1987, or to such other incentives as the PARC, the LBP, or other government financial institutions may provide.

The LBP shall redeem a landowner’s LBP bonds at face value: Provided, that the proceeds thereof shall be invested in a BOI- registered company or in any agri-business or agro-industrial enterprise in the region where the landowner has previously made investments, to the extent of thirty percent (30%) of the face value of said LBP bonds, subject to guidelines that shall be issued by the LBP.

SEC. 39. Land Consolidation. – the DAR shall carry out land consolidation projects to promote equal distribution of landholdings, to provide the needed infrastructure in agriculture, and to conserve soil fertility and prevent erosion.

CHAPTER X
SPECIAL AREAS OF CONCERN

SEC. 40. Special Areas of Concern. – As an integral part of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program, the following principles in these special areas of concern shall be observed:

(1) Subsistence Fishing. – Small fisher folk, including seaweed farmers, shall be assured of greater access to the utilization of water resources;

(2) Logging and Mining concessions. – Subject to the requirement of a balanced ecology and conservation of water resources, suitable areas, as determined by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), in logging, mining and pasture areas, must be opened up for agrarian settlements whose beneficiaries will be required to undertake reforestation and conservation of products methods. Subject to existing laws, rules and regulation, settlers and members of tribal communities must be allowed to enjoy and exploit the products of the forests other than timber within the logging concessions.

(3) Sparsely Occupied Public Agricultural lands. – Sparsely occupied agricultural lands of the public domain will be surveyed, proclaimed and developed as farm settlements for qualified landless people based on an organized program to ensure their orderly and early development

Agricultural land allocations will be made for ideal family-sized farms as determined by the PARC. Pioneers and other settlers will be treated equally in every respect.

Subject to the prior rights of qualified beneficiaries, uncultivated lands of the public domain shall be made available on a lease basis to interested and qualified parties. Parties who will engage in the development of capital-intensive, traditional or pioneering crops will be given priority.

The lease period, which shall not be more than a total of fifty (50) years, shall be proportionate to the amount of investment and production goals of the lessee. A system of evaluation and audit will be instituted.

(4) Idle, abandoned, foreclosed and sequestered lands. – Idle, abandoned, foreclosed and sequestered lands shall be planned for distribution as homelots and family-sized farm lots to actual occupants. If land area permits, other landless families will be accommodated in these lands.

(5) Rural Women. – All qualified women members of the agricultural labor force must be guaranteed and assured equal rights to ownership of the land, equal shares of the farm’s produce, and representation in advisory or appropriate decision-making bodies.chan robles virtual law library

(6) Veterans and Retirees. – In accordance with Section 7 of Article XVI of the Constitution, landless war veterans and veterans of military campaigns, their surviving spouse and orphans, retirees of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Integrated National Police (INP), returnees, surrenderees, and similar beneficiaries shall be given due consideration in the disposition of agricultural lands of the public domain.

(7) Agriculture Graduates. – Graduates of agricultural schools who are landless shall be assisted by the government, through the DAR, in their desire to own and till agricultural lands.

CHAPTER XI
PROGRAM IMPLEMENTATION

SEC. 41. The Presidential Agrarian Reform Council. – The Presidential Agrarian Reform Council (PARC) shall be composed of the President of the Philippines as Chairman, the Secretary of Agrarian Reform as Vice-Chairman and the following as members: Secretaries of the Departments of Agriculture; Environment and Natural Resources; Budget and Management ; Local Government; Public Works and Highways; Trade and Industry; Finance; Labor and Employment; Director-General of the National Economic and Development Authority; President, Land Bank of the Philippines; Administrator, National Irrigation Administration; and three (3) representatives of affected landowners to represent Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao: Provided, that one of them shall be from the cultural communities.

SEC. 42. Executive Committee. – There shall be an Executive Committee (EXCOM) of the PARC composed of the Secretary of the DAR as Chairman, and such other members as the president may designate, taking into account Article XIII, Section 5 of the Constitution. Unless otherwise directed by the PARC, the EXCOM may meet and decide on any and all matters in between meetings of the PARC: Provided, however, That its decisions must be reported to the PARC immediately and not later than the next meeting.

SEC. 43. Secretariat. – A PARC Secretariat is hereby established to provide general support and coordinative services such as inter-agency linkages; program and project appraisal and evaluation and general operations monitoring for the PARC.
The Secretariat shall be headed by the Secretary of Agrarian Reform who shall be assisted by an Undersecretary and supported by a staff whose composition shall be determined by the PARC Executive Committee and whose compensation shall be chargeable against the Agrarian Reform Fund. All officers and employees of the Secretariat shall be appointed by the Secretary of Agrarian Reform.

SEC. 44. Provincial Agrarian Reform Coordinating Committee (PARCCOM). – A Provincial Agrarian Reform Coordinating Committee is hereby created in each province, composed of a Chairman, who shall be appointed by the President upon the recommendation of the EXCOM, the Provincial Agrarian Reform Officer as Executive Officer, and one (1) representative each from the Department of Agriculture, Department of Environment and Natural Resources and from the LBP; one (1) representative each from existing farmers’ organizations, agricultural cooperatives and non-governmental organizations in the province; two (2) representatives from landowners at least one (1) of whom shall be a producer representing the principal crop of the province; and two (2) representatives from farmers and farm workers or beneficiaries, at least one (1) of whom shall be a farmer or farmworker representing the principal crop of the province, as members: Provided, That in areas where there are cultural communities, the latter shall likewise have one (1) representative.

The PARCCOM shall coordinate and monitor the implementation of the CARP in the province. It shall provide information on the provisions of the CARP, guidelines issued by the PARC and on the progress of the CARP in the province. In addition, it shall:

(a) Recommend to the PARC the following :

(1) Market price to be used in the determination of the profit-sharing obligation of agricultural entities in the province;

(2) Adoption of the direct payment scheme between the landowner and the farmer and/or farmworker-beneficiary: Provided, that the amount and terms of payment are not more burdensome to the agrarian reform beneficiary than under the compulsory coverage provision of the CARL: Provided, further, That the agrarian reform beneficiary agrees to the amount and the terms of payment : Provided, furthermore, That the DAR shall act as mediator in cases of disagreement between the landowner and the farmer and/or farmworker-beneficiary: Provided, finally, That the farmer and/or farmer-beneficiary shall be eligible to borrow from the LBP an amount equal to eighty-five percent (85%) of the selling price of the land that they have acquired;

(3) Continuous processing of applications for lease-back arrangements, joint venture agreements and other schemes that will optimize the operating size for agriculture production and also promote both security of tenure and security of income to farmer beneficiaries: Provided, That lease-back arrangements should be the last resort. (As amended by R. A. 7905)

SEC. 45 Province-by-Province Implementation. – The PARC shall provide the guidelines for the province-by-province implementation of the CARP, taking into account peculiarities and needs of each place, kind of crops needed or suited, land distribution workload, beneficiaries’ development activities and other factors prevalent or obtaining in the area. In all cases, the implementing agencies at the provincial level shall promote the development of identified ARCs without neglecting the needs and problems of other beneficiaries. The ten-year program of distribution of public and private land in each province shall be adjusted from year to year by the province’s PARCCOM in accordance with the level of operations previously established by the PARC, in every case ensuring that support services are available or have been programmed before actual distribution is effected. (As amended by R. A. 7905)

SEC. 46 . Barangay Agrarian Reform Committee (BARC). – Unless otherwise provided in this Act, the provisions of Executive Order No. 229 regarding the organization of the Barangay Agrarian Reform Committee (BARC) shall be in effect.

SEC. 47. Functions of the BARC. – In addition to those provided in Executive Order No. 229, the BARC shall have the following function:

(a) Mediate and conciliate between parties involved in an agrarian dispute including matters related to tenurial and financial arrangements;

(b) Assist in the identification of qualified beneficiaries and landowners within the barangay;

(c) Attest to the accuracy of the initial parcellary mapping of the beneficiary’s tillage;

(d) Assist qualified beneficiaries in obtaining credit from lending institutions;

(e) Assist in the initial determination of the value of the land;

(f) Assist the DAR representative in the preparation of periodic reports on the CARP implementation for submission to the DAR;

(g) Coordinate the delivery of support services to beneficiaries; and

(h) Perform such other functions as may be assigned by the DAR .

(2) The BARC shall endeavor to mediate, conciliate and settle agrarian disputes lodged before it within thirty (30) days from its taking cognizance thereof. If after the lapse of the thirty day period, it is unable to settle the dispute, it shall issue a certification of its proceedings and shall furnish a copy thereof upon the parties within seven (7) days from the expiration of the thirty days period.

SEC. 48. Legal Assistance. – The BARC or any member thereof may, whenever necessary in the exercise of any of its functions hereunder, seek the legal assistance of the DAR and the provincial, city, or municipal government.

SEC. 49. Rules and Regulations. – The PARC and the DAR shall have the power to issue rules and regulations, whether substantive or procedural, to carry out the objects and purposes of this Act. Said rules shall take effect ten (10) days after publication in two (2) national newspapers of general circulation.

CHAPTER XII
ADMINISTRATIVE ADJUDICATION

SEC. 50. Quasi-Judicial Powers of the DAR. – The DAR is hereby vested with primary jurisdiction to determine and adjudicate agrarian reform matters and shall have exclusive original jurisdiction over all matters involving the implementation of agrarian reform, except those falling under the exclusive jurisdiction of the Department of Agricultural (DA) and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).

It shall not be bound by technical rules of procedure and evidence but shall proceed to hear and decide all cases, disputes or controversies in a most expeditious manner, employing all reasonable means to ascertain the facts of every case in accordance with equity and the merits of the case. Toward this end, it shall adopt a uniform rule of procedure to achieve a just, expeditious and inexpensive determination of every action or proceeding before it.

It shall have the power to summon witnesses, administer oaths, take testimony, require submission of reports, compel the production of books and documents and answers to interrogatories and issue subpoena, and subpoena duces tecum and to enforce its writs through sheriffs or other duly deputized officers. It shall likewise have the power to punish direct and indirect contempt in the same manner and subject to the same penalties as provided in the Rules of Court .

Representatives of farmer leaders shall be allowed to represent themselves, their fellow farmers or their organizations in any proceedings before the DAR: Provided, however, that when there are two or more representatives for any individual or group, the representatives should choose only one among themselves to represent such party or group before any DAR proceedings.chan robles virtual law library

Notwithstanding an appeal to the Court of Appeals, the decision of the DAR shall be immediately executory.

SEC. 51. Finality of Determination. – Any case or controversy before it shall be decided within thirty (30) days after it is submitted for resolution. Only one (1) motion for consideration shall be allowed. Any order, ruling or decision shall be final after the lapse of fifteen (15) days from receipt of a copy thereof.

SEC. 52. Frivolous Appeals. – To discourage frivolous or dilatory appeals from the decisions or orders on the local or provincial levels, the DAR may impose reasonable penalties, including but not limited to, fines or censures upon erring parties.

SEC. 53. Certification of BARC. – The DAR shall not take cognizance of any agrarian dispute or controversy unless a certification from the BARC that the dispute has been submitted to it for mediation and conciliation without any success of settlement is presented: Provided, however, that if no certification is issued by the BARC within thirty (30) days after a matter or issue is submitted to it for mediation or conciliation, the case or dispute may be brought before the PARC.

CHAPTER XIII
JUDICIAL REVIEW

SEC. 54. Certiorari. – Any decision, order, award or ruling of the DAR on any agrarian dispute or on any matter pertaining to the application, implementation, enforcement, or interpretation of this Act and other pertinent laws on agrarian reform may be brought to the Court of Appeals by certiorari except as otherwise provided in this Act within fifteen (15) days from receipt of a copy thereof.

The findings of fact of the DAR shall be final and conclusive if based on substantial evidence.

SEC . 55. No Restraining Order or Preliminary Injunction.- No court in the Philippines shall have jurisdiction to issue any restraining order or writ of preliminary injunction against PARC or any of its duly authorized or designated agencies in any case, dispute or controversy arising from, necessary to, or in connection with the application, implementation, enforcement, or interpretation of this Act and other pertinent laws on agrarian reform.

SEC. 56. Special Agrarian Court. – The supreme Court shall designate at least one (1) branch of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) within each province to act as a Special Agrarian Court.

The Supreme Court may designate more branches to constitution such additional Special Agrarian Courts as may be necessary to cope with the number of agrarian cases in each province. In the designation, the Supreme Court shall give preference to the Regional Trial Courts which have been assigned to handle agrarian cases or whose presiding judges were former judges of the defunct Court of Agrarian Relations.

The Regional Trial Court (RTC) judges assigned to said courts shall exercise said special jurisdiction in addition to the regular jurisdiction of their respective courts.

The Special Agrarian Courts shall have the power and prerogatives inherent in or belonging to the Regional Trial Courts.

SEC. 57. Special Jurisdiction . – The Special Agrarian Courts shall have original and exclusive jurisdiction over all petitions for the determination of just compensation to landowners, and the prosecution of all criminal offenses under this Act. The Rules of Court shall apply to all proceedings before the Special Agrarian Courts unless modified by this Act.

The Special Agrarian Courts shall decide all appropriate cases under their special jurisdiction within thirty (30) days from submission of the case for decision.

SEC. 58. Appointment of Commissioners. – The Special Agrarian Courts, upon their own initiative or at the instance of any of the parties, may appoint one or more commissioners to examine, investigate and ascertain facts relevant to the dispute, including the valuation of properties, and to file a written report thereof with the court.

SEC. 59. Orders of the Special Agrarian Courts. – No order of the Special Agrarian Courts on any issue, question, matter or incident raised before them shall be elevated to the appellate courts until the hearing shall have been terminated and the case decided on the merits.

SEC. 60. Appeals.- An appeal may be taken from the decision of the Special Agrarian Courts by filing a petition for review with the Court of Appeals fifteen (15) days from receipt of notice of the decision; otherwise, the decision shall become final.

An appeal from the decision of the Court of Appeals, or from any order, ruling or decision of DAR, as the case may be, shall be by a petition for review with the Supreme Court within a non-extendible period of fifteen (15) days from receipt of a copy of said decision.

SEC. 61. Procedure on Review. – Review by the Court of Appeals or the Supreme Court, as the case may be, shall be governed by the Rules of Court. The Court of Appeals, however, may require the parties to file simultaneous memoranda within a period of fifteen (15) days from notice, after which the case is deemed submitted for decision.

SEC. 62. Preferential Attention in Courts. – All courts in the Philippines, both trial and appellate, are hereby enjoined to give preferential attention to all cases arising from or in connection with the implementation of the provisions of this Act.

All cases pending in court arising from or in connection with the implementation of this Act shall continue to be heard, tried and decided into their finality, notwithstanding the expiration of the ten-year period mentioned in Section 5 hereof.

CHAPTER XIV
FINANCING

SEC. 63. Funding Source.- The initial amount needed to implement this Act for the period of ten (10) years upon approval hereof shall be funded from the Agrarian Reform Fund created under Sections 20 and 21 of Executive Order No. 229.Additional amounts are hereby authorized to be appropriated as and when needed to augment the Agrarian Reform Fund in order to fully implement the provisions of this Act.

Sources of funding or appropriations shall include the following:

(a) Proceeds of the sales of the Assets Privatization Trust;

(b) All receipts from assets recovered and from sale of ill-gotten wealth recovered through the Presidential Commission on Good Government;

(c) Proceeds of the disposition of the properties of the Government in foreign countries;

(d) Portion of amounts accruing to the Philippines from all sources or official foreign aid grants and concessional financing from all countries, to be used for the specific purposes of financing production credits, infrastructures, and other support services required by this Act;

(e) Other government funds not otherwise appropriated.chan robles virtual law library

All funds appropriated to implement the provisions of this Act shall be considered continuing appropriations during the period of its implementation.

SEC. 64. Financial Intermediary for the CARP. – The Land Bank of the Philippines shall be the financial intermediary for the CARP, and shall insure that the social justice objectives of the CARP shall enjoy a preference among its priorities.

CHAPTER XV
GENERAL PROVISIONS

SEC. 65. Conversion of Lands . – After the lapse of five (5) years from its award, when the land ceases to be economically feasible and sound for agricultural purposes, or the locality has become urbanized and the land will have greater economic value for residential, commercial or industrial purposes, the DAR, upon application of the beneficiary or the landowner, with due notice to the affected parties, and subject to existing laws, may authorize the reclassification or conversion of the land and its disposition: Provided, That the beneficiary shall have fully paid his obligation.

SEC. 65-A Conversion into Fishpond and Prawn Farms. – No conversion of public agricultural lands into fishponds and prawn farms shall be made except in situations where the provincial government with the concurrence of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) declares a coastal zone as suitable for fishpond development. In such case, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) shall allow the lease and development of such areas: Provided, That the declaration shall not apply to environmentally critical projects and areas as contained in Title (A) sub-paragraph two, (B-5) and (C) and Title (B), number eleven (11) of Proclamation No. 2146, entitled “Proclaiming Certain Areas and Types of Projects as Environmentally Critical and Within the the Scope of the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) System Established under Presidential Decree No. 1586″, to ensure the protection of river systems, aquifers and mangrove vegetations from pollution and environmental degradation: Provided, further, That the approval shall be in accordance with a set of guidelines to be drawn up and promulgated by the DAR and the BFAR: Provided, furthermore, That small-farmer cooperatives and organizations shall be given preference in the award of the Fishpond Lease Agreements (FLAs).

No conversion of more than five (5) hectares of private lands to fishponds and prawn farms shall be allowed after the passage of this Act, except when the use of the land is more economically feasible and sound for fishpond and/or prawn farm, as certified by the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) , and a simple and absolute majority of the regular farm workers or tenants agree to the conversion. The Department of Agrarian Reform may approve applications for change in the use of the land: Provided, finally, That no piecemeal conversion to circumvent the provisions of this Act shall be allowed. In these cases where the change of use is approved, the provisions of Section 32-A hereof on incentives shall apply. (As added by R. A. 7881)

SEC. 65-B. Inventory. – Within one (1) year from the effectivity of this Act, the BFAR shall undertake and finish an inventory of all government and private fishponds and prawn farms and undertake a program to promote the sustainable management and utilization of prawn farms and fishponds. No lease under Section 65-A hereof may be granted until after the completion of the said inventory.

The sustainable management and utilization of prawn farms and fishponds shall be in accordance with the efflue standards, pollution charges and other pollution control measures such as, but not limited to, the quantity of fertilizers, pesticides and other chemicals used that may be established by the Fertilizer and Pesticide Authority (FPA), the Environment Management Bureau (EMB), and other appropriate government regulatory bodies, and existing regulations governing water utilization, primarily Presidential Decree No. 1067, entitled “A Decree Instituting a Water Code, Thereby Revising and Consolidating the Laws Governing the Ownership, Appropriation, Utilization, Exploitation, Development, Conservation and Protection of Water Resources.” (As added by R. A. 7881)

SEC. 65-C. Protection of Mangrove Areas. – In existing Fishpond Lease Agreement (FlAs) and those that will be issued after the effectivity of this Act, a portion of the fishpond area fronting the sea, sufficient to protect the environment, shall be established as a buffer zone and be planted to specified mangrove species to be determined in consultation with the regional office of the DENR. The Secretary of Environment and Natural Resources shall provide the penalties for any violation of this undertaking as well as the rules for its implementation. (As added by R. A. 7881)

SEC. 65-D. Change of Crops. -The change of crops to commercial crops or high value crops shall not be considered as a conversion in the use or nature of the land. The change in crop should, however, not prejudice the rights of tenants or leaseholders should there be any and the consent of a simple and absolute majority of the affected farm workers, if any, shall first be obtained. (As added by R. A. 7881)

SEC. 66. Exemptions from Taxes and Fees of Land Transfers. – Transactions under this Act involving a transfer of ownership, whether form natural or juridical persons, shall be exempted form taxes arising from capital gains. These transactions shall also be exempted from the payment of registration fees, and all other taxes and fees for the conveyance or transfer thereof: Provided, That all arrearages in real property taxes, without penalty or interest, shall be deductible from the compensation to which the owner may be entitled.

SEC. 67. Free Registration of Patents and Titles. – All Registers of Deeds are hereby directed to register, free from payment of all fees and other charges, patents, titles and documents required for the implementation of the CARP.

SEC. 68. Immunity of Government Agencies from Undue Interference. – No injunction, restraining order, prohibition or mandamus shall be issued by the lower courts against the Departments of Agrarian Reform (DAR), Department of Agriculture (DA), the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), and the Department of Justice (DOJ) in their implementation of the Program.

SEC. 69. Assistance of Other Government Entities.- The PARC, in the exercise of its functions, is hereby authorized to call upon the assistance and support of other government agencies, bureaus and offices, including government-owned and controlled corporations.

SEC. 70. Disposition of Private Agricultural Lands. – The sale or disposition of agricultural lands retained by a landowner as a consequence of Section 6 hereof shall be valid as long as the total landholdings that shall be owned by the transferee thereof inclusive of the land to be acquired shall not exceed the landholdings ceilings provided for in this Act. Any sale or disposition of agricultural lands after the effectivity of this Act found to be contrary to the provisions hereof shall be null and void. Transferees of agricultural lands shall furnish the appropriate Register of Deeds and the BARC with an affidavit attesting that his total landholdings as a result of the said acquisition do not exceed the landholding ceiling. The Register of Deeds shall not register the transfer of any agricultural land without the submission of this sworn statement together with proof of service of a copy thereof to the BARC.

SEC. 71. Bank Mortgages. – Banks and other financial institutions allowed by law to hold mortgage rights or security interests in agricultural lands to secure loans and other obligations of borrowers, may acquire title to these mortgaged properties, regardless of area, subject to existing laws on compulsory transfer of foreclosed assets and acquisition as prescribed under Section 16 of this Act.

SEC. 72 . Leases, Management, Grower or Services Contracts, Mortgages and Other Claims. – Lands covered by this Act under lease, management, grower or service contracts, and the like shall be disposed of as follows:

(a) Lease, management, grower or service contracts covering private lands may continue under their original terms and conditions until the expiration of the same even if such land has, in the meantime, been transferred to qualified beneficiaries.

(b) Mortgages and other claims registered with the Register of Deeds will be assumed by the government up to an amount equivalent to the landowner’s compensation value as provided in this Act.

SEC. 73. Prohibited Acts and Omissions. – The following are prohibited:

(a) The ownership or possession, for the purpose of circumventing the provisions of this Act, of agricultural lands in excess of the total retention limits or award ceilings by any person, natural or juridical, except those under collective ownership by farmer-beneficiaries.

(b) The forcible entry or illegal detainer by persons who are not qualified beneficiaries under this Act to avail themselves of the rights and benefits of the Agrarian Reform Program;

(c) The conversion by any landowner of his agricultural land into non-agricultural use with intent to avoid the application of this Act to his landholdings and to dispossess his tenant farmers or the land tilled by them;

(d) The willful prevention or obstruction by any person, association or entity of the implementation of the CARP;

(e) The sale, transfer, conveyance or change of the nature of lands outside of urban centers and city limits either in whole or in part after the effectivity of this Act. The date of the registration of the deed of conveyance in the Register of Deeds with respect to titled lands and the date of the issuance of the tax declaration to the transferee of the property with respect to unregistered lands, as the case may be, shall be conclusive for the purpose of this Act;

(f) The sale, transfer or conveyance by a beneficiary of the right to use or any other usufructuary right over the land he acquired by virtue of being a beneficiary, in order to circumvent the provisions of this Act.

SEC. 73-A. Exception. – The provisions of Section 73, paragraph (e) to the contrary notwithstanding, the sale and/or transfer of agricultural land in cases where such sale, transfer or conveyance is made necessary as a result of a bank’s foreclosure of the mortgaged land is hereby permitted.( As added by R. A. 7881)

SEC. 74 . Penalties. – Any person who knowingly or willfully violates the provisions of this Act shall be punished by imprisonment of not less than one (1) month to not more than three (3) years or a fine of not less than one thousand pesos (P1,000.00) and not more than fifteen thousand pesos (P15,000.00), or both, at the discretion of the court. If the offender is a corporation or association, the officer responsible therefor shall be criminally liable

SEC. 75. Suppletory Application of Existing Legislation. – The provisions of Republic Act Number 3844, as amended, Presidential Decree Numbers 27 and 266 as amended, Executive Order Numbers 228 and 229, both Series of 1987, and other laws not inconsistent with this Act shall have suppletory effect.

SEC. 76. Repealing Clause. – Section 35 of Republic Act Number 3844, Presidential Decree Number 316, the last two paragraphs of Section 12 of Presidential Decree Number 1038, and all other laws, decrees, executive orders, rules and regulations, issuances or parts thereof inconsistent with this Act are hereby repealed or amended accordingly.

SEC. 77. Separability Clause. – If, for any reason, any section or provision of this Act is declared null and void, no other section, provision or part thereof shall be affected and the same shall remain in full force and effect.
SEC. 78. Effectivity Clause. – This Act Shall take effect immediately after publication in at least two (2) national newspapers of general circulation.
Approved: June 10, 1988

President Noynoy’s First SONA

PANIMULA

Speaker Feliciano Belmonte; Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile; Vice President Jejomar Binay; Chief Justice Renato Corona; Former Presidents Fidel Valdez Ramos and Joseph Ejercito Estrada; members of the House of Representatives and the Senate; distinguished members of the diplomatic corps; my fellow workers in government; Mga minamahal kong kababayan:

Sa bawat sandali po ng pamamahala ay nahaharap tayo sa isang sangandaan.

Sa isang banda po ay ang pagpili para sa ikabubuti ng taumbayan. Ang pagtanaw sa interes ng nakakarami; ang pagkapit sa prinsipyo; at ang pagiging tapat sa sinumpaan nating tungkulin bilang lingkod-bayan. Ito po ang tuwid na daan.

Sa kabilang banda ay ang pag-una sa pansariling interes. Ang pagpapaalipin sa pulitikal na konsiderasyon, at pagsasakripisyo ng kapakanan ng taumbayan. Ito po ang baluktot na daan.
Matagal pong naligaw ang pamahalaan sa daang baluktot. Araw-araw po, lalong lumilinaw sa akin ang lawak ng problemang ating namana. Damang-dama ko ang bigat ng aking responsibilidad.

Sa unang tatlong linggo ng aming panunungkulan, marami po kaming natuklasan. Nais ko pong ipahayag sa inyo ang iilan lamang sa mga namana nating suliranin at ang ginagawa naming hakbang para lutasin ang mga ito.

Sulyap lamang po ito; hindi pa ito ang lahat ng problemang haharapin natin. Inilihim at sadyang iniligaw ang sambayanan sa totoong kalagayan ng ating bansa.

Sa unang anim na buwan ng taon, mas malaki ang ginastos ng gobyerno kaysa sa pumasok na kita. Lalong lumaki ang deficit natin, na umakyat na sa 196.7 billion pesos. Sa target na kuleksyon, kinapos tayo ng 23.8 billion pesos; ang tinataya namang gastos, nalagpasan natin ng 45.1 billion pesos.
Ang budget po sa 2010 ay 1.54 trillion pesos.

Nasa isandaang bilyong piso o anim at kalahating porsyento na lang ng kabuuan ang malaya nating magagamit para sa nalalabing anim na buwan ng taong ito.

Halos isang porsyento na lang po ng kabuuang budget ang natitira para sa bawat buwan.

Saan naman po dinala ang pera?

Naglaan ng dalawang bilyong piso na Calamity Fund bilang paghahanda para sa mga kalamidad na hindi pa nangyayari. Napakaliit na nga po ng pondong ito, ngunit kapapasok pa lang natin sa panahon ng baha at bagyo, 1.4 billion pesos o sitenta porsyento na ang nagastos.

Sa kabuuan ng 108 million pesos para sa lalawigan ng Pampanga, 105 million pesos nito ay napunta sa iisang distrito lamang.

Samantala, ang lalawigan ng Pangasinan na sinalanta ng Pepeng ay nakatanggap ng limang milyong piso lamang para sa pinsalang idinulot ng bagyong Cosme, na nangyari noong 2008 pa.

Ibinigay po ang pondo ng Pampanga sa buwan ng eleksyon, pitong buwan pagkatapos ng Ondoy at Pepeng. Paano kung bumagyo bukas? Inubos na ang pondo nito para sa bagyong nangyari noong isang taon pa. Pagbabayaran ng kinabukasan ang kasakiman ng nakaraan.

Ganyan din po ang nangyari sa pondo ng MWSS. Kamakailan lamang, pumipila ang mga tao para lang makakuha ng tubig. Sa kabila nito, minabuti pa ng liderato ng MWSS na magbigay ng gantimpala sa sarili kahit hindi pa nababayaran ang pensyon ng mga retiradong empleyado.

Noong 2009, ang buong payroll ng MWSS ay 51.4 million pesos. Pero hindi lang naman po ito ang sahod nila; may mga additional allowances at benefits pa sila na aabot sa 160.1 million pesos. Sa madaling sabi, nakatanggap sila ng 211.5 million pesos noong nakaraang taon. Beinte-kuwatro porsyento lang nito ang normal na sahod, at sitenta’y sais porsyento ang dagdag.

Ang karaniwang manggagawa hanggang 13th month pay plus cash gift lang ang nakukuha. Sa MWSS, aabot sa katumbas ng mahigit sa tatlumpung buwan ang sahod kasama na ang lahat ng mga bonuses at allowances na nakuha nila.

Mas matindi po ang natuklasan natin sa pasahod ng kanilang Board of Trustees. Tingnan po natin ang mga allowances na tinatanggap nila:

Umupo ka lang sa Board of Trustees at Board Committee meeting, katorse mil na. Aabot ng nobenta’y otso mil ito kada buwan. May grocery incentive pa sila na otsenta mil kada taon.
Hindi lang iyon: may mid-year bonus, productivity bonus, anniversary bonus, year-end bonus, at Financial Assistance. May Christmas bonus na, may Additional Christmas Package pa. Kada isa sa mga ito, nobenta’y otso mil.

Sa suma total po, aabot ang lahat ng dalawa’t kalahating milyong piso kada taon sa bawat miyembro ng Board maliban sa pakotse, technical assistance, at pautang. Uulitin ko po. Lahat ng ito ay ibinibigay nila sa kanilang mga sarili habang hindi pa nababayaran ang mga pensyon ng kanilang mga retirees.

Pati po ang La Mesa Watershed ay hindi nila pinatawad. Para magkaroon ng tamang supply ng tubig, kailangang alagaan ang mga watershed. Sa watershed, puno ang kailangan. Pati po iyon na dapat puno ang nakatayo, tinayuan nila ng bahay para sa matataas na opisyal ng MWSS.

Hindi naman sila agad maaalis sa puwesto dahil kabilang sila sa mga Midnight Appointees ni dating Pangulong Arroyo. Iniimbestigahan na natin ang lahat nang ito. Kung mayroon pa silang kahit kaunting hiya na natitira – sana kusa na lang silang magbitiw sa puwesto.

Pag-usapan naman po natin ang pondo para sa imprastruktura. Tumukoy ang DPWH ng dalawandaan apatnapu’t anim na priority safety projects na popondohan ng Motor Vehicle Users Charge. Mangangailangan po ito ng budget na 425 million pesos.

Ang pinondohan po, dalawampu’t walong proyekto lang. Kinalimutan po ang dalawandaan at labing walong proyekto at pinalitan ng pitumpung proyekto na wala naman sa plano. Ang hininging 425 million pesos, naging 480 million pesos pa, lumaki lalo dahil sa mga proyektong sa piling-piling mga benepisyaryo lang napunta.

Mga proyekto po itong walang saysay, hindi pinag-aralan at hindi pinaghandaan, kaya parang kabuteng sumusulpot.
Tapos na po ang panahon para dito. Sa administrasyon po natin, walang kota-kota, walang tongpats, ang pera ng taumbayan ay gagastusin para sa taumbayan lamang.

Meron pa po tayong natuklasan. Limang araw bago matapos ang termino ng nakaraang administrasyon, nagpautos silang maglabas ng 3.5 billion pesos para sa rehabilitasyon ng mga nasalanta nina Ondoy at Pepeng.

Walumpu’t anim na proyekto ang paglalaanan dapat nito na hindi na sana idadaan sa public bidding. Labingsiyam sa mga ito na nagkakahalaga ng 981 million pesos ang muntik nang makalusot. Hindi pa nailalabas ang Special Allotment Release Order ay pirmado na ang mga kontrata.

Buti na lang po ay natuklasan at pinigilan ito ni Secretary Rogelio Singson ng DPWH. Ngayon po ay dadaan na ang kabuuan ng 3.5 billion pesos sa tapat na bidding, at magagamit na ang pondo na ito sa pagbibigay ng lingap sa mga nawalan ng tahanan dahil kina Ondoy at Pepeng.

Pag-usapan naman natin ang nangyari sa Napocor. Noong 2001 hanggang 2004, pinilit ng gobyerno ang Napocor na magbenta ng kuryente nang palugi para hindi tumaas ang presyo. Tila ang dahilan: pinaghahandaan na nila ang eleksyon.

Dahil dito, noong 2004, sumagad ang pagkakabaon sa utang ng NAPOCOR. Napilitan ang pambansang gobyerno na sagutin ang dalawandaang bilyong pisong utang nito.

Ang inakala ng taumbayan na natipid nila sa kuryente ay binabayaran din natin mula sa kaban ng bayan. May gastos na tayo sa kuryente, binabayaran pa natin ang dagdag na pagkakautang ng gobyerno.

Kung naging matino ang pag-utang, sana’y nadagdagan ang ating kasiguruhan sa supply ng kuryente. Pero ang desisyon ay ibinatay sa maling pulitika, at hindi sa pangangailangan ng taumbayan. Ang taumbayan, matapos pinagsakripisyo ay lalo pang pinahirapan.
MRT

Ganito rin po ang nangyari sa MRT. Sinubukan na namang bilhin ang ating pagmamahal. Pinilit ang operator na panatilihing mababa ang pamasahe.

Hindi tuloy nagampanan ang garantiyang ibinigay sa operator na mababawi nila ang kanilang puhunan. Dahil dito, inutusan ang Landbank at Development Bank of the Philippines na bilhin ang MRT.

Ang pera ng taumbayan, ipinagpalit sa isang naluluging operasyon.

NFA

Dumako naman po tayo sa pondo ng NFA.

Noong 2004: 117,000 metric tons ang pagkukulang ng supply ng Pilipinas. Ang binili nila, 900,000 metric tons. Kahit ulitin mo pa ng mahigit pitong beses ang pagkukulang, sobra pa rin ang binili nila.

Noong 2007: 589,000 metric tons ang pagkukulang ng supply sa Pilipinas. Ang binili nila, 1.827 million metric tons. Kahit ulitin mo pa ng mahigit tatlong beses ang pagkukulang, sobra na naman ang binili nila.

Ang masakit nito, dahil sobra-sobra ang binibili nila taun-taon, nabubulok lang pala sa mga kamalig ang bigas, kagaya ng nangyari noong 2008.

Hindi po ba krimen ito, na hinahayaan nilang mabulok ang bigas, sa kabila ng apat na milyong Pilipinong hindi kumakain ng tatlong beses sa isang araw?

Ang resulta nito, umabot na sa 171.6 billion pesos ang utang ng NFA noong Mayo ng taong ito.

Ang tinapon na ito, halos puwede na sanang pondohan ang mga sumusunod:

Ang budget ng buong Hudikatura, na 12.7 billion pesos sa taong ito.

Ang Conditional Cash Transfers para sa susunod na taon, na nagkakahalaga ng 29.6 billion pesos.

Ang lahat ng classroom na kailangan ng ating bansa, na nagkakahalaga ng 130 billion pesos.

Kasuklam-suklam ang kalakarang ito. Pera na, naging bato pa.

ZERO BUDGET

Narinig po ninyo kung paano nilustay ang kaban ng bayan. Ang malinaw po sa ngayon: ang anumang pagbabago ay magmumula sa pagsiguro natin na magwawakas na ang pagiging maluho at pagwawaldas.

Kaya nga po mula ngayon: ititigil na natin ang paglulustay sa salapi ng bayan. Tatanggalin natin ang mga proyektong mali.
Ito po ang punto ng tinatawag nating zero-based approach sa ating budget. Ang naging kalakaran po, taun-taon ay inuulit lamang ang budget na puno ng tagas. Dadagdagan lang nang konti, puwede na.

Sa susunod na buwan ay maghahain tayo ng budget na kumikilala nang tama sa mga problema, at magtutuon din ng pansin sa tamang solusyon.

IMMEDIATE STEPS

TAX EVASION

Ilan lang ito sa mga natuklasan nating problema. Heto naman po ang ilang halimbawa ng mga hakbang na ginagawa natin.
Nandiyan po ang kaso ng isang may-ari ng sanglaan. Bumili siya ng sasakyang tinatayang nasa dalawampu’t anim na milyong piso ang halaga.

Kung kaya mong bumili ng Lamborghini, bakit hindi mo kayang magbayad ng buwis?

Nasampahan na po ito ng kaso. Sa pangunguna nina Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima, Justice Secretary Leila de Lima, BIR Commissioner Kim Henares at Customs Commissioner Lito Alvarez, bawat linggo po ay may bago tayong kasong isinasampa kontra sa mga smuggler at sa mga hindi nagbabayad ng tamang buwis.

EXTRALEGAL KILLINGS

Natukoy na rin po ang salarin sa mga kaso nina Francisco Baldomero, Jose Daguio at Miguel Belen, tatlo sa anim na insidente ng extralegal killings mula nang umupo tayo.

Singkuwenta porsyento po ng mga insidente ng extralegal killings ang patungo na sa kanilang resolusyon.

Ang natitira pong kalahati ay hindi natin tatantanan ang pag-usig hanggang makamit ang katarungan.

TRUTH COMMISSION

Pananagutin natin ang mga mamamatay-tao. Pananagutin din natin ang mga corrupt sa gobyerno.

Nagsimula nang mabuo ang ating Truth Commission, sa pangunguna ni dating Chief Justice Hilario Davide. Hahanapin natin ang katotohanan sa mga nangyari diumanong katiwalian noong nakaraang siyam na taon.

Sa loob ng linggong ito, pipirmahan ko ang kauna-unahang Executive Order na nagtatalaga sa pagbuo nitong Truth Commission.

PUBLIC-PRIVATE PARTNERSHIPS

Kung ang sagot sa kawalan ng katarungan ay pananagutan, ang sagot naman sa kakulangan natin sa pondo ay mga makabago at malikhaing paraan para tugunan ang mga pagkatagal-tagal nang problema.
Napakarami po ng ating pangangailangan: mula sa edukasyon, imprastruktura, pangkalusugan, pangangailangan ng militar at kapulisan, at marami pang iba. Hindi kakasya ang pondo para mapunan ang lahat ng ito.

Kahit gaano po kalaki ang kakulangan para mapunan ang mga listahan ng ating pangangailangan, ganado pa rin ako dahil marami nang nagpakita ng panibagong interes at kumpyansa sa Pilipinas.

Ito ang magiging solusyon: mga Public-Private Partnerships. Kahit wala pa pong pirmahang nangyayari dito, masasabi kong maganda ang magiging bunga ng maraming usapin ukol dito.

May mga nagpakita na po ng interes, gustong magtayo ng expressway na mula Maynila, tatahak ng Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Nueva Vizcaya, hanggang sa dulo ng Cagayan Valley nang hindi gugugol ang estado kahit na po piso.

Sa larangan ng ating Sandatahang Lakas:

Mayroon po tayong 36,000 nautical miles ng baybayin. Ang mayroon lamang tayo: tatlumpu’t dalawang barko. Itong mga barkong ito, panahon pa ni MacArthur.

May nagmungkahi sa atin, ito ang proposisyon: uupahan po nila ang headquarters ng Navy sa Roxas Boulevard at ang Naval Station sa Fort Bonifacio.

Sagot po nila ang paglipat ng Navy Headquarters sa Camp Aguinaldo. Agaran, bibigyan tayo ng isandaang milyong dolyar. At dagdag pa sa lahat nang iyan, magsusubi pa sila sa atin ng kita mula sa mga negosyong itatayo nila sa uupahan nilang lupa.

Sa madali pong sabi: Makukuha natin ang kailangan natin, hindi tatayo gagastos, kikita pa tayo.

Marami na pong nag-alok at nagmungkahi sa atin, mula lokal hanggang dayuhang negosyante, na magpuno ng iba’t ibang pangangailangan.

Mula sa mga public-private partnerships na ito, lalago ang ating ekonomiya, at bawat Pilipino makikinabang. Napakaraming sektor na matutulungan nito.

Maipapatayo na po ang imprastrukturang kailangan natin para palaguin ang turismo.

Sa agrikultura, makapagtatayo na tayo ng mga grains terminals, refrigeration facilities, maayos na road networks at post-harvest facilities.

Kung maisasaayos natin ang ating food supply chain sa tulong ng pribadong sektor, sa halip na mag-angkat tayo ay maari na sana tayong mangarap na mag-supply sa pandaigdigang merkado.

Kung maitatayo ang minumungkahi sa ating railway system, bababa ang presyo ng bilihin. Mas mura, mas mabilis, mas maginhawa, at makakaiwas pa sa kotong cops at mga kumokotong na rebelde ang mga bumibiyahe.

STREAMLINING PROCESSES

Paalala lang po: una sa ating plataporma ang paglikha ng mga trabaho, at nanggagaling ang trabaho sa paglago ng industriya. Lalago lamang ang industriya kung gagawin nating mas malinis, mas mabilis, at mas maginhawa ang proseso para sa mga gustong magnegosyo.

Pabibilisin natin ang proseso ng mga proyektong sumasailalim sa Build-Operate-Transfer. Sa tulong ng lahat ng sangay ng gobyerno at ng mga mamamayan, pabababain natin sa anim na buwan ang proseso na noon ay inaabot ng taon kung hindi dekada.

May mga hakbang na rin pong sinisimulan ang DTI, sa pamumuno ni Secretary Gregory Domingo:

Ang walang-katapusang pabalik-balik sa proseso ng pagrehistro ng pangalan ng kumpanya, na kada dalaw ay umaabot ng apat hanggang walong oras, ibababa na natin sa labinlimang minuto.

Ang dating listahan ng tatlumpu’t anim na dokumento, ibababa natin sa anim. Ang dating walong pahinang application form, ibababa natin sa isang pahina.

Nananawagan ako sa ating mga LGUs. Habang naghahanap tayo ng paraan para gawing mas mabilis ang pagbubukas ng mga negosyo, pag-aralan din sana nila ang kanilang mga proseso.

Kailangan itong gawing mas mabilis, at kailangan itong itugma sa mga sinisumulan nating reporma.

Negosyante, sundalo, rebelde, at karaniwang Pilipino, lahat po makikinabang dito. Basta po hindi dehado ang Pilipino, papasukin po natin lahat iyan. Kailangan na po nating simulan ang pagtutulungan para makamit ito. Huwag nating pahirapan ang isa’t isa.

Parating na po ang panahon na hindi na natin kailangang mamili sa pagitan ng seguridad ng ating mamamayan o sa kinabukasan ng inyong mga anak.

FREEING UP FUNDS

EDUCATION

Oras na maipatupad ang public-private partnerships na ito, mapopondohan ang mga serbisyong panlipunan, alinsunod sa ating plataporma.

Magkakapondo na po para maipatupad ang mga plano natin sa edukasyon.

Mapapalawak natin ang basic education cycle mula sa napakaikling sampung taon tungo sa global standard na labindalawang taon.

Madadagdagan natin ang mga classroom. Mapopondohan natin ang service contracting sa ilalim ng GASTPE.

Pati ang conditional cash transfers, na magbabawas ng pabigat sa bulsa ng mga pamilya, madadagdan na rin ng pondo.

PHILHEALTH

Maipapatupad ang plano natin sa PhilHealth.

Una, tutukuyin natin ang tunay na bilang ng mga nangangailangan nito. Sa ngayon, hindi magkakatugma ang datos. Sabi ng PhilHealth sa isang bibig, walumpu’t pitong porsyento na raw ang merong coverage. Sa kabilang bibig naman, singkuwenta’y tres porsyento naman. Ayon naman sa National Statistics Office, tatlumpu’t walong porsyento ang may coverage.

Ngayon pa lang, kumikilos na si Secretary Dinky Soliman at ang DSWD upang ipatupad ang National Household Targetting System, na magtutukoy sa mga pamilyang higit na nagangailangan ng tulong. Tinatayang siyam na bilyon ang kailangan para mabigyan ng PhilHealth ang limang milyong pinakamaralitang pamilyang Pilipino.

LEGISLATIVE AGENDA

Napakaganda po ng hinaharap natin. Kasama na po natin ang pribadong sektor, at kasama na rin natin ang League of Provinces, sa pangunguna nina Governor Alfonso Umali kasama sina Governor L-Ray Villafuerte at Governor Icot Petilla. Handa na pong makipagtulungan para makibahagi sa pagtustos ng mga gastusin. Alam ko rin pong hindi magpapahuli ang League of Cities sa pangunguna ni Mayor Oscar Rodriguez.

Kung ang mga gobyernong lokal ay nakikiramay na sa ating mga adhikain, ang Kongreso namang pinanggalingan ko, siguro naman maasahan ko din.

Nagpakitang-gilas na po ang gabinete sa pagtukoy ng ating mga problema at sa paglulunsad ng mga solusyon sa loob lamang ng tatlong linggo.

Nang bagyo pong Basyang, ang sabi sa atin ng mga may prangkisa sa kuryente, apat na araw na walang kuryente. Dahil sa mabilis na pagkilos ni Secretary Rene Almendras at ng Department of Energy, naibalik ang kuryente sa halos lahat sa loob lamang ng beinte-kwatro oras.

Ito pong sinasabing kakulangan sa tubig sa Metro Manila, kinilusan agad ni Secretary Rogelio Singson at ng DPWH. Hindi na siya naghintay ng utos, kaya nabawasan ang perwisyo.

Nakita na rin natin ang gilas ng mga hinirang nating makatulong sa Gabinete. Makatuwiran naman po sigurong umasa na hindi na sila padadaanin sa butas ng karayom para makumpirma ng Commission on Appointments. Kung mangyayari po ito, marami pa sa mga mahuhusay na Pilipino ang maeengganyong magsilbi sa gobyerno.

Sa lalong madaling panahon po, uupo na tayo sa LEDAC at pag-uusapan ang mga mahahalagang batas na kailangan nating ipasa.

Makakaasa kayo na mananatiling bukas ang aking isipan, at ang
ating ugnayan ay mananatiling tapat.

Isinusulong po natin ang Fiscal Responsibility Bill, kung saan hindi tayo magpapasa ng batas na mangangailangan ng pondo kung hindi pa natukoy ang panggagalingan nito. May 104.1 billion pesos tayong kailangan para pondohan ang mga batas na naipasa na, ngunit hindi maipatupad.

Kailangan din nating isaayos ang mga insentibong piskal na ibinigay noong nakaraan. Ngayong naghihigpit tayo ng sinturon, kailangang balikan kung alin sa mga ito ang dapat manatili at kung ano ang dapat nang itigil.

Huwag po tayong pumayag na magkaroon ng isa pang NBN-ZTE. Sa lokal man o dayuhan manggagaling ang pondo, dapat dumaan ito sa tamang proseso. Hinihingi ko po ang tulong ninyo upang amiyendahan ang ating Procurement Law.

Ayon po sa Saligang Batas, tungkulin ng estado ang siguruhing walang lamangan sa merkado. Bawal ang monopolya, bawal ang mga cartel na sasakal sa kumpetisyon. Kailangan po natin ng isang Anti-Trust Law na magbibigay-buhay sa mga prinsipyong ito. Ito ang magbibigay ng pagkakataon sa mga Small- at Medium-scale Enterprises na makilahok at tumulong sa paglago ng ating ekonomiya.

Ipasa na po natin ang National Land Use Bill.

Una rin pong naging batas ng Commonwealth ang National Defense Act, na ipinasa noon pang 1935. Kailangan nang palitan ito ng batas na tutugon sa pangangailangan ng pambansang seguridad sa kasalukuyan.

Nakikiusap po akong isulong ang Whistleblower’s Bill upang patuloy nang iwaksi ang kultura ng takot at pananahimik.
Palalakasin pa lalo ang Witness Protection Program. Alalahanin po natin na noong taong 2009 hanggang 2010, may nahatulan sa 95% ng mga kaso kung saan may witness na sumailalim sa programang ito.

Kailangang repasuhin ang ating mga batas. Nanawagan po akong umpisahan na ang rekodipikasyon ng ating mga batas, upang siguruhing magkakatugma sila at hindi salu-salungat.

PEACE PROCESS

Ito pong mga batas na ito ang batayan ng kaayusan, ngunit ang pundasyon ng lahat ng ginagawa natin ay ang prinsipyong wala tayong mararating kung walang kapayapaan at katahimikan.

Dalawa ang hinaharap nating suliranin sa usapin ng kapayapaan: ang situwasyon sa Mindanao, at ang patuloy na pag-aaklas ng CPP-NPA-NDF.

Tungkol sa situwasyon sa Mindanao: Hindi po nagbabago ang ating pananaw. Mararating lamang ang kapayapaan at katahimikan kung mag-uusap ang lahat ng apektado: Moro, Lumad, at Kristiyano. Inatasan na natin si Dean Marvic Leonen na mangasiwa sa ginagawa nating pakikipag-usap sa MILF.

Iiwasan natin ang mga pagkakamaling nangyari sa nakaraang administrasyon, kung saan binulaga na lang ang mga mamamayan ng Mindanao. Hindi tayo puwedeng magbulag-bulagan sa mga dudang may kulay ng pulitika ang proseso, at hindi ang kapakanan ng taumbayan ang tanging interes.

Kinikilala natin ang mga hakbang na ginagawa ng MILF sa pamamagitan ng pagdidisplina sa kanilang hanay. Inaasahan natin na muling magsisimula ang negosasyon pagkatapos ng Ramadan.

Tungkol naman po sa CPP-NPA-NDF: handa na ba kayong maglaan ng kongkretong mungkahi, sa halip na pawang batikos lamang?

Kung kapayapaan din ang hangad ninyo, handa po kami sa malawakang tigil-putukan. Mag-usap tayo.

Mahirap magsimula ang usapan habang mayroon pang amoy ng pulbura sa hangin. Nananawagan ako: huwag po natin hayaang masayang ang napakagandang pagkakataong ito upang magtipon sa ilalim ng iisang adhikain.

Kapayapaan at katahimikan po ang pundasyon ng kaunlaran. Habang nagpapatuloy ang barilan, patuloy din ang pagkakagapos natin sa kahirapan.

PANAWAGAN

Dapat din po nating mabatid: ito ay panahon ng sakripisyo. At ang sakripisyong ito ay magiging puhunan para sa ating kinabukasan. Kaakibat ng ating mga karapatan at kalayaan ay ang tungkulin natin sa kapwa at sa bayan.

Inaasahan ko po ang ating mga kaibigan sa media, lalo na sa radyo at sa print, sa mga nagbablock-time, at sa community newspapers, kayo na po mismo ang magbantay sa inyong hanay.
Mabigyang-buhay sana ang mga batayang prinsipyo ng inyong bokasyon: ang magbigay-linaw sa mahahalagang isyu; ang maging patas at makatotohanan, at ang itaas ang antas ng pampublikong diskurso.

Tungkulin po ng bawat Pilipino na tutukan ang mga pinunong tayo rin naman ang nagluklok sa puwesto. Humakbang mula sa pakikialam tungo sa pakikilahok. Dahil ang nakikialam, walang-hanggan ang reklamo. Ang nakikilahok, nakikibahagi sa solusyon.

Napakatagal na pong namamayani ang pananaw na ang susi sa asenso ay ang intindihin ang sarili kaysa intindihin ang kapwa. Malinaw po sa akin: paano tayo aasenso habang nilalamangan ang kapwa?

Ang hindi nabigyan ng pagkakataong mag-aral, paanong makakakuha ng trabaho? Kung walang trabaho, paanong magiging konsumer? Paanong mag-iimpok sa bangko?

Ngunit kung babaliktarin natin ang pananaw-kung iisipin nating “Dadagdagan ko ang kakayahan ng aking kapwa”-magbubunga po ito, at ang lahat ay magkakaroon ng pagkakataon.

Maganda na po ang nasimulan natin. At mas lalong maganda po ang mararating natin. Ngunit huwag nating kalimutan na mayroong mga nagnanasang hindi tayo magtagumpay. Dahil kapag hindi tayo nagtagumpay, makakabalik na naman sila sa kapangyarihan, at sa pagsasamantala sa taumbayan.

Akin pong paniwala na Diyos at taumbayan ang nagdala sa ating kinalalagyan ngayon. Habang nakatutok tayo sa kapakanan ng ating kapwa, bendisyon at patnubay ay tiyak na maaasahan natin sa Poong Maykapal. At kapag nanalig tayo na ang kasangga natin ay ang Diyos, mayroon ba tayong hindi kakayanin?

Ang mandato nating nakuha sa huling eleksyon ay patunay na umaasa pa rin ang Pilipino sa pagbabago. Iba na talaga ang situwasyon. Puwede na muling mangarap. Tayo nang tumungo sa katuparan ng ating mga pinangarap.

Maraming salamat po.

Noynoy Aquino’s covenant with the Philippine Nation

Minamahal kong kababayan.

Tadhana ang nagbuklod sa atin.
Dahil naghihingalo na ang ating bayan.
Nais kong pumasok sa isang kasunduan sa inyo:

Lalaban tayo para sa wastong edukasyon ng bawat batang pilipino.
Lalaban tayo para sa abot kayang serbisyong pangkalusugan.
Lalabanan natin ang kahirapan.
Lalabanan natin ang mga kawatan.
Lalabanan natin ang sino mang wawasak sa kalikasan.
Lalabanan natin ang sino mang manggugulo sa ating kapayapaan at katahimikan.

Ang laban natin ay laban ng bayan.

Sa ngalan ng aking mga magulang at sa gabay ng Diyos, gagawin ko ang lahat ng aking makakaya na pag-silbihan ang mahal nating inang bayan.

Bilang tunay na sagot sa kahirapan at tunay na daan sa kaunlaran, ang inyong linkod, Benigno Noynoy Aquino III, isang mamamayang pilipino, nangangako sa Diyos at sa Bayan:

HINDI AKO MAGNANAKAW.

We are in a good place to survive global crisis

By Corazon P. Guidote
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 01:59:00 03/15/2009
(The author is an economist.)

MANILA, Philippines — Filipinos are in excellent condition to survive and to grow out of this global economic crisis.

Fundamentally, our economy is resilient, borne by a spirit of self-empowerment and resourcefulness.

We are in a place where people find ways to get by and even prosper, and only the minority depend on government. It’s a place where the great majority depend mainly on themselves and thrive on hard work, perseverance, self-sacrifice and a strong faith in and love for God and country.

URL: http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/breakingnews/nation/view/20090315-194200/We-are-in-a-good-place-to-survive-global-crisis