[Appeal] Heal the Land! Set the Farmers Free! Let the CARP Process Move!

An Appeal to President Benigno S. Aquino and The Supreme Court

Heal the Land!
Set the Farmers Free!
Let the CARP Process Move!

On November 22, 2011, the Supreme Court released the historic decision declaring the Stock Distribution Option (SDO) of the Hacienda Luisita as violative of the spirit of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP). The vast hacienda was acquired by the Cojuangco family 55 years ago through loans from the Central Bank and the Government Service Insurance System on the condition that the land would be distributed to the farmer-tillers ten years after.

Today, three months after the Supreme Court decision and 55 years after the Cojuangco-government land deal, the HLI land remains undisturbed and undistributed. Reason: a Motion for Additional Time to File for Reconsideration on Reversal of the Grant to the Farm Worker Beneficiaries of the Option to Remain as Stockholders with Motion for Leave to File Second Motion for Reconsideration on the Reckoning Period of Just Compensation. This self-explanatory Motion was quietly filed by the Cojuangco family last December 8, 2011.

This Motion is frivolous for it is a second MR. Its primary purpose is to delay the implementation of the land distribution. Under the Rules of Court promulgated by the Supreme Court itself, a 2nd MR should be dismissed outright. We, therefore, ask the Supreme Court to abide with their own Rules! Dismiss summarily this nuisance MR! Reaffirm the November 22 SC ruling! Uphold agrarian justice! Agrarian Reform now!

We also ask President Benigno S. Aquino, who quietly accepted the Supreme Court ruling on the SDO issue, to ask his own family, no matter how emotionally painful it is to them, to stop further delaying HLI land distribution. Set the Hacienda Luisita farmers free — now! Steer the nation to your corrupt-free and inclusive vision of national development. Let social justice and the Constitution prevail!

Let the CARP program move. Let DAR dismantle the other SDOs in Negros, in Mindanao. Stop the illegal maneuvers of other haciendas and plantations to evade CARP by renewing their deceptive 25-year leasebacks with the agrarian-reform beneficiaries for another 25 years. After 50 years of SDOs and leasebacks, may matitira pa bang agrarian reform beneficiaries?

With full CARP coverage, let the land grow and bloom again in peace, harmony and productivity. Let the nation’s farming agenda under your watch, Mr. President, be one of social and economic emancipation and transformation!

Matuwidnalandas – ngayonna!
“ The teaching of Pope Pius XI is still relevant: “the distribution of created goods, which, as every discerning person knows, is labouring today under the gravest evils due to the huge disparity between the few exceedingly rich and the unnumbered propertyless, must be effectively called back to and brought into conformity with the norms of the common good, that is, social justice”[354], Catholic Social Teachings

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