NAPC supports passage of genuine agrarian reform bill
Posted: 2017-Feb-17 19.00.50 UTC+0800
MANILA — National Anti-Poverty Commission (NAPC) has expressed full support for the passage of House Bill No. 555 or Genuine Agrarian Reform bill which seeks free land distribution to all qualified beneficiaries.
"Our support is rooted in the incontrovertible fact that landlessness is a specter that has haunted tenant-farmers in the Philippines for centuries," NAPC Lead Convenor Liza Maza said in a Palace press briefing.
Maza said genuine land reform has remained elusive for the millions of tenant-farmers in the country since the Commonwealth period due to landlessness.
"Landlessness is the blight of the Philippine countryside that has spawned a never-ending cycle of poverty, indebtedness, hunger, and malnutrition for generations of rural families," Maza said.
She said HB 555 is a radical shift from all previous agrarian reform laws "with its genuine adherence to social justice."
"The bill proposes free land distribution to all qualified beneficiaries. It covers all agricultural lands, in effect, rendering land conversion illegal. It revokes all previous unjust decrees on exemption and exclusion," Maza said.
Maza lauded the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) headed by Rafael Mariano for "functioning true to its mandate."
"Genuine agrarian reform is key to the achievement of food security, sustainable agriculture, nationalist industrialization and social justice to the farmers who comprise majority of our population," Maza said.
She also said that genuine land reform will address the root cause of armed conflict and poverty in the country. (PNA)