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Peace talks to benefit 220,000 farmers

NOORDWIJK, The Netherlands – An estimated 220,000 farmers will likely benefit from the ongoing negotiations between the Philippine government and the National Democratic Front, allowing them to lay claim to over 650,000 hectares of both private and public land, which will form part of the two parties’ ongoing peace negotiations under the socio-economic agenda.

A source, who is privy to ongoing discussions for the a Comprehensive Agreement on Socio-Economic Reforms, said that there are now 650,000 hectares which have been processed by the Department of Agrarian Reform and are now actually secured by corresponding notices of coverage, just awaiting distribution to farmers.

These farmer-beneficiaries are deemed to have tilled these lands. And the average land reform grant would be three hectares for every farmer.

However, the government needs about P200 billion to acquire these lands from mostly private groups or individuals, particularly those that cover haciendas. (Rocky Nazareno)