Cebu News

For Region 7: DAR posts 90 percent land distribution

The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines — Central Visayas is nearing its status as a “land-free” region with over 90% of land acquisition and distribution already completed, according to the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR)-7.

"Gamay nalang kaayo atoang kuhaonon, so pagmahurot na, wala na'y yuta, land-free na, so ang ato diri sa (Region 7) is support services nalang," said DAR-7 Regional Director Leomides Villareal.

In the span of July 2022 to June 2024, the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) successfully redistributed 190,414 hectares of public and private agricultural lands across the region, slightly below the initial target of 202,827 hectares.

As of the latest report, Bohol has benefited 33,880 Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries (ARB’s), while Cebu has supported 32,450 ARBs. In Negros Oriental, a total of 93,491 ARB’s have received land titles through the program, with Siquijor recorded 829 ARB’s.

Villareal clarified that ARB’s are farmers who will be given the Certificate of Land Ownership Award (CLOA) after fulfilling specific conditions under its mandate.

He also the biggest challenges faced by DAR-7 were mostly landowners' protests and legal cases filed against them.

Meanwhile, with the remaining 10%, DAR envisions reaching its land-free status within five to six months, even after the separation of Negros Island and Siquijor from Region 7.

Once DAR-7 accomplishes its goal, Villareal said support services to the farmers and CLOA awardees will still continue.

"Kining CARP, land distribution, is only a part of the vision of the Department of Agrarian Reform...tinguha (namo) is social justice...naa pana sila'y mga kaso nga (giasikaso) ang CLOA awardees. Mawala man g’yud ang yuta ug dili pud madungagan, pero ang kinabuhi sa tao gikinahanglan og suporta," he said.

Under the support services of DAR-7, the Climate Resilient and Farm Productivity Support Project (CRFPSP) and Farm-to-Market Road Projects are included.

Additionally, Enterprise Development and Economic Support, Village Level Farms-focused Enterprise Development, and Partnership Against Hunger and Poverty are also part of these services.

In the CRFPSP services, a total of 76 farm machineries and equipment were provided to 28 ARB organizations.

"Nagapadayon ang DAR sa support services nga gi-andam namo para sa ilaha. Kung inyo tarongon ang inyuhang pagtanom or produkto moabot g’yud na didto sa merkado sa umaabot na panahon pinaagi sa agrarian reform," he told farmers.  — Donna Rose Egos, CNU intern (FREEMAN)

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