The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) recently distributed 120 hectares of agricultural lands in Donsol town in the province of Sorsogon. Provincial Agrarian Reform Program Officer II (PARPO) Leonito M. Gaveria said 35 farmer-beneficiaries of the agrarian reform program received the certificate of landownership award (CLOAs) and are now expecting a great improvement in their economic lives. "The DAR's mission is not only to distribute lands to landless farmers; but also to provide support services because our purpose is not only to make you owners of the land you till but also to transform you into entrepreneurs," Gaveria said. Gaveria advised the farmer-beneficiaries to join in agrarian reform beneficiaries' organizations (ARBOs) so that they would benefit more in terms of getting a package from DAR's support services. He cited the Village-Level Processing Center Enhancement Project in Bulan, another town in Sorsogon, and other projects under the program beneficiaries' development as example of how the DAR transforms the ARBs into entrepreneurs. Donsol Mayor Josephine Alcantara-Cruz said that the farmer-beneficiaries are very fortunate to have the said opportunities. "Make your land productive, it is your ticket as your way out from poverty," she added. Landbank of the Philippines (LBP) Representative Rollie Dela PeAa said the distributed properties were formerly owned by private individuals and that the new CLOA holders should pay their amortizations to the LBP. "I am so thankful to DAR because I got this land. Me and my fellow beneficiaries will pay our dues and we promise that we will do our best to develop these landholdings," said Fe Tan, one of the Land recipients.
Source: Philippine Information Agency