Thursday, 17 Aug 2017

 

PEASANT POLICY ADVOCACY AGENDA

 

CARP (Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program)

 

The passage of the CARPER law in June 2010 marks the triumph of the peasantry in legislation.  The victory however requires vigilance from the advocates so that the law shall be implemented according to its essence.  After more than two decades, around 1.3 million hectares of agricultural lands have yet to be distributed to the beneficiaries.  Major policy reversals on agrarian reform such as continuous land conversion and exemption of lands, cancellation of Certificate of Land Ownership Awards (CLOA) and Emancipation Patents (EP), and execution of leaseback agreements threatened the program and undermined many of its gains.  SALIGAN, together with other groups working for agrarian reform, remain watchful and active to ensure that tillers are given land and provided support services by the government.

 

LAND USE

 

At present, while there are several laws on land use, there is no comprehensive national land use policy.  Thus resulting in conflicting legal provisions regarding ownership and use of land and other resources. SALIGAN and other groups has been lobbying for the passage of a National Land Use Act [NLUA].   SALIGAN, in various partnerships with PLCPD, Oxfam, Alternative Law Groups, ANGOC and the People’s Alarm also worked in the conduct of case studies and discussions as regards conflicting claims between sectors.

 

FISHERIES

 

SALIGAN has been involved in various policy issues affecting fisherfolks, particularly in relation to fisheries management and fisherfolk settlement.  As the Nerve Center of the NGOs for Fisheries Reform [NfR], SALIGAN has organized several policy review sessions and fora on fisheries issues for Mindanao-based NGOs and people’s organizations.  SALIGAN and NfR also continue to lobby for bills on fisheries filed in Congress.

 

Fisheries Management

 

With the revocation of Department Order No. 17 (series of 2001) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources [DENR], there now remains an unclear process of delineation of municipal waters.  The present policy, Department Order No. 1 (series of 2004) of the Department of Agriculture [DA] does not address the situation of municipalities with offshore islands. SALIGAN and NfR have been active in pushing for policies as regards the application of the archipelagic principle in the delineation of municipal waters and, more importantly, the exclusive use of municipal fisherfolk of the 15-km municipal waters.

 

Another issue related to fisheries management is the absence of Municipal Fisheries Development Plans in some coastal municipalities.  In order to facilitate the formulation of said plan, SALIGAN has conducted consultations with local communities as regards the drafting and passage of Municipal Fisheries Resource Management Ordinance.

 

Fisherfolk Settlement

 

Section 108 of the Fisheries Code [Republic Act No. 8550] has not been enforced due to lack of implementing guidelines as regards fisherfolk settlement. Aside from  pushing for the adoption of a Joint Administrative Order on fisherfolk settlement with various national government agencies concerned, SALIGAN also seeks to lobby with local sanggunians regarding the identification of lands suitable for fisherfolk settlement.