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SC orders DAR, farmers to explain inaction on Hacienda Luisita.

The Supreme Court has ordered the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) and the farmers' group Alyansa ng mga Manggagawang Bukid sa Hacienda Luisita (Ambala) to show cause why they should not be cited in contempt of court for disobeying its 2011 and 2012 resolutions on the distribution of Cojuangco-owned sugar estate Hacienda Luisita to thousands of its farm worker beneficiaries (FWBs).

In a resolution dated May 3, the high court gave DAR and Ambala a non-extendible period of 10 days to submit their explanation.

The high court issued a show-cause order following a motion filed by Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. (RCBC) last April 27, 2017 accusing DAR of violating the SC's ruling that directed the agency to segregate, among other parcels, a 500-hectare lot that had already been converted into industrial land under a conversion order issued by the DAR itself. Part of that area is the 184-hectares belonging to RCBC.

Last month, farmer-workers and various militant groups also staged a rally in front of RCBC properties claiming rights following the revocation order. The rally resulted in violence against RCBC personnel and damage to properties.

'Acting on the urgent motion for the issuance of a writ of execution and/or cease and desist dated April 27, 2017, the Court resolved to require respondents Department of Agrarian Reform Secretary Rafael Mariano and Alyansa ng mga Mangagawang Bukid sa Hacienda Luisita (Ambala) to comment thereon and show cause why they should not be held in contempt of court for disoberying the decision dated July 5, 2011 and the resolutions dated November 22, 2011 and April 24, 2012 both within a non-extendible period of 10 days from notice hereof,' the Court ruled.

The Nov. 22, 2011 landmark ruling held that just compensation due Hacienda Luisita, Inc. (HLI) should be based on the valuation of the land on Nov. 21, 1989, the day the

The Presidential Agrarian Reform Council (PARC) approved Luisita's stock distribution option agreement (SDOA).

The high court also modified its July 5, 2011 decision by directing the total distribution of the plantation to its farmer-beneficiaries.

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Publication:Philippines Daily Inquirer (Makati City, Philippines)
Date:May 11, 2017
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