CBCP Statement on CARP Extension and Joint Resolution No, 19

POSITION PAPER ON JOINT RESOLUTION NUMBER 19

We, the Bishops of the Catholic Church, are one in opposing Joint Resolution No.19 that was approved by Congress. The resolution was crafted not to extend the implementation of CARP for another six (6) months but to kill agrarian reform.

Joint Resolution No. 19 mandated the removal of the compulsory acquisition mode of land distribution which is the heart and soul of the agrarian reform program. The resolution covers only private agricultural lands whose landowners have offered their lands under the Voluntary Offer to Sell (VOS) and under the Voluntary Land Transfer (VLT).

Joint Resolution No.19 must be stricken down. It is clearly unconstitutional since the Constitution mandates that the State shall undertake the just distribution of all agricultural lands. The said provision clearly commands the State to distribute and subject to agrarian reform all lands; not only those that will be covered under the voluntary schemes: Voluntarily Offer to Sell (VOS) and Voluntary Land Transfer (VLT).

Joint Resolution No.19 effectively cancels the distribution of 64 percent (64%) of new lands which are set to be covered by CARP as well as halts the distribution of all lands that are being processed for distribution under the compulsory acquisition mode. JR No.19 clearly discriminates against thousands of farmers who have currently pending application for coverage will not be acted on by government.

The resolution ends Land Acquisition and Distribution (LAD) under CARP as landowners are not expected to voluntarily offer their lands under CARP. These are mostly private agricultural lands owned by landowners who have been resisting the program for the past twenty (20) years. Landowners of landholdings currently under VOS and VLT are also expected to withdraw their application for VOS and VLT to altogether avoid CARP coverage.

The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) delivered the final blow on CARP by issuing the DAR Memorandum No. 09-01804. The memorandum is an operational directive that provides the guidelines in implementing the Joint Resolution No.19. However, it worsens the situation by ordering the deferment of the “processing of Compulsory Acquisition (CA) including landholdings already in the pipeline, and survey activities for lands under CA until further notice”. Furthermore, the memorandum is prematurely issued because JR No.19 has yet to be signed into law.

Joint Resolution No.19 and DAR Memorandum No. 09-01804 could spark chaos in the countryside as the agrarian reform beneficiaries and landowners are bound to fight head on over the issue. This early, the Joint Resolution No.19 and Memorandum 09-01804 are already being used by landowners to block the distribution of all agricultural lands.

The Congress and the DAR subjected agrarian reform to the discretion of the landowners and removed the compulsion which is the essence of this social justice measure. Such act of emasculation committed by the Congress and DAR gauged against the relevant Constitutional provisions, amounts to a nullity.

We also call on the DAR to stick to its Constitutional mandate of continuing CARP until all agricultural lands are covered and scrap Memorandum 09-01804.

Finally, we call on the President to reiterate her support to CARP extension with reforms by re-issuing certification for HB 4077 and SB 2666 as urgent bills and by pro-actively campaign for the immediate passage of the CARP extension with reforms law.

Signed:

MOST REV. ANTONIO J. LEDESMA, SJ, D.D., Archbishop of Cagayan de Oro

MOST REV. RAMON C. ARGUELLES, D.D., Archbishop of Lipa

MOST REV. PACIANO B. ANICETO, D.D., Archbishop of San Fernando , Pampanga

MOST REV. JOSE S. PALMA, D.D., Archbishop of Palo

MOST REV. BRODERICK S. PABILLO, D.D., Auxiliary Bishop of Manila

MOST REV. HONESTO F. ONGTIOCO, D.D., Bishop of Cubao

MOST REV. ANTONIO P. PALANG, SVD, D.D., Bishop of San Jose de Mindoro

MOST REV. ISABELO C. ABARQUEZ, D.D., Bishop of Calbayog

MOST REV. JOEL Z. BAYLON, D.D., Bishop of Masbate

MOST REV. LUCILO B. QUIAMBAO, D.D., Auxiliary Bishop of Legazpi

MOST REV. REYNALDO G. EVANGELISTA, D.D., Bishop of Boac

MOST REV. SOCRATES B. VILLEGAS, D.D., Bishop of Balanga

MOST REV. JOHN F. DU, D.D. Bishop of Dumaguete

MOST REV. VICENTE M. NAVARRA, D.D., Bishop of Bacolod

MOST REV. EMMANUEL C. TRANCE, D.D., Bishop of Catarrman

MOST REV. DEOGRACIAS S. IÑIGUEZ, JR., D.D., Bishop of Kalookan

MOST REV. EDGARDO S. JUANICH, D.D., Vicar Apostolic of Taytay, Palawan

MOST REV. HONESTO C. PACANA, S.J., D.D., Bishop of Malaybalay, Bukidnon

MOST REV. PATRICIO H. ALO, D.D. Bishop of Mati, Davao Oriental

MOST REV. SOFRONIO A. BANCUD, SSS, D.D., Bishop of Cabanatuan

MOST REV. EMMANUEL T. CABAJAR, CSsR., D.D., Bishop of Pagadian

MOST REV. PRECIOSO D. CANTILLAS, SDB, D.D., Bishop of Maasin

MOST REV. CARLITO J. CENZON, CICM, D.D., Bishop of Baguio

MOST REV. FLORENTINO F. CINENSE, D.D., Bishop of Tarlac

MOST REV. LEO M.DRONA, SDB, D.D., Bishop of San Pablo

MOST REV. FRANCISCO M. DE LEON, D.D., Auxiliary Bishop of Antipolo

MOST REV. MANOLO A. DE LOS SANTOS , D.D., Bishop of Virac

MOST REV. LEOPOLDO C. JAUCIAN, SVD, DD., Bishop of Bangued

MOST REV. JACINTO A. JOSE, D.D., Bishop of Urdaneta

MOST REV. MARTIN S. JUMOAD, D.D., Bishop Prelate of Isabela, Basilan

MOST REV. ONESIMO C. GORDONCILLO D.D., Archbishop of Capiz

MOST REV. ANGELITO R. LAMPON, OMI, D.D., Vicar Apostolic of Jolo

MOST REV. ROBERTO C. MALLARI, D.D., Auxiliary Bishop of San Fernando , Pampanga

MOST REV. JOSE R. MANGUIRAN, D.D., Bishop of Dipolog

MOST REV. EMILIO Z. MARQUEZ, D.D., Bishop of Lucena

MOST REV. NICOLAS M. MONDEJAR, D.D., Bishop-Emeritus of San Carlos , Negros Occidental

MOST REV. NEREO P. ODCHIMAR, D.D., Bishop of Tandag

MOST REV. JOSE F. OLIVEROS, D.D., Bishop of Malolos

MOST REV. JESUS A. DOSADO, D.D., Bishop of Ozamis

MOST REV. GEORGE B. RIMANDO, D.D., Auxiliary Bishop of Davao

MOST REV. JOSE C. SORRA, D.D., Bishop-Emeritus of Legazpi

MOST REV. JOSE CORAZON T. TALA-OC, D.D., Bishop of Romblon

MOST REV. JULIUS S. TONEL, D.D., Bishop of Ipil, Zamboanga Sibugay

MOST REV. SERGIO L. UTLEG, D.D., Bishop of Laoag

MOST REV. CRISPIN B. VARQUEZ, Bishop of Borongan, Eastern Samar

MOST REV. MYLO HUBERT C. VERGARA, D.D., Bishop of San Jose de Nueva Ecija

MOST REV. ARTURO M. BASTES, SVD, D.D., Bishop of Sorsogon

MOST REV. WARLITO I. CAJANDIG, D.D., Bishop of Calapan

MOST REV. GUILLERMO V. AFABLE, D.D., Bishop of Digos

MOST REV. RODOLFO F. BELTRAN, D.D., Vicar Apostolic of Bontoc Lagawe

MOST REV. ELENITO DE LOS REYES GALIDO, D.D., Bishop of Iligan

MOST REV. FLOMENO G. NAVAL, D.D., Bishop of Naval

MOST REV. ARTEMIO L. RILLERA, SVD, D.D., Bishop of San Fernando La Union

MOST REV. LEANDRO Y. MEDROSO, D.D., JCD, Bishop of Tagbilaran

MOST REV. ROMULO G. VALLES, D.D., Bishop of Zamboanga

MOST REV. ROMULO T. DE LA CRUZ, D.D., Bishop of Kidapawan

MOST REV. DIMUALDO D. GUTIERREZ, D.D., BSE , MA , STD, Bishop of Marvel

MOST REV. RENATO P. MAYUGBA, D.D., Auxiliary Bishop of Lingayen, Dagupan

MOST REV. BANJAMIN J. ALMONEDA, D.D., Bishop Emeritus of Daet

MOST REV. IRENEO A. AMANTILLO, CSSR, D.D., Bishop Emeritus of Tandag

MOST REV. ANGEL T. HOBAYAN, D.D, DCJ, Bishop Emeritus of Catarman

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