THE Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) expressed surprise Friday after 13 farmer-beneficiaries staged a lightning rally inside the agency, saying that the case of the 491-hectare Hacienda Teresa in Negros Occidental is now with the Presidential Agrarian Reform Council (PARC) for final decision.
DAR Undersecretary for Field Operations Narciso Nieto said the Presidential Agrarian Reform Council (PARC), which comprises of the President as head and all Cabinet secretaries as members, is expected to decide on the case as soon as possible.
“We’re just waiting for the PARC to convene itself and come up with the decision before we make our own move,” he said.
Nieto said the case was fielded to the PARC after its executive committee, headed by DAR Secretary Gil de los Reyes, voted 18-2 last Monday against the application for stock distribution option the hacienda owner, the 14 Colored Corporation, filed in 1992, four years after the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program was launched in 1988.
“I fully explained to them (farmer-beneficiaries) the good news shortly after the voting was concluded last Monday that’s why I was surprised to see them staging such a rally inside our office,” Nieto said. “All that we are telling them is to be a little patient. After all, we’re almost there.”
Nieto said the DAR is just waiting for the PARC to make a decision. He expressed confidence that it would adopt the decision of its executive committee.
“Once a decision is made, the DAR will immediately act on it. If it is for the denial of the SDO application, I will order our Negros Occidental agrarian reform officer to issue a notice of coverage right away to the 14 Colored Corporation,” Nieto said. PAS-DAR