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Agrarian Reform History Commonwealth Act No.

178 (An Amendment to Rice


Tenancy Act No. 4045), Nov. 13, 1936 Provided for
certain controls in the landlord-tenant relationships
Pre-Spanish Period
National Rice and Corn Corporation (NARIC), 1936
This land is Ours God gave this land to us
Established the price of rice and corn thereby help the
poor tenants as well as consumers.
Before the Spaniards came to the Philippines, Filipinos lived in
villages or barangays ruled by chiefs or datus. The datus
Commonwealth Act. No. 461, 1937 Specified reasons
comprised the nobility. Then came the maharlikas (freemen),
followed by the aliping mamamahay (serfs) and aliping saguiguilid for the dismissal of tenants and only with the approval of
(slaves). the Tenancy Division of the Department of Justice.

However, despite the existence of different classes in the social Rural Program Administration, created March 2, 1939
structure, practically everyone had access to the fruits of the soil. Provided the purchase and lease of haciendas and their
Money was unknown, and rice served as the medium of exchange. sale and lease to the tenants.

Spanish Period Commonwealth Act No. 441 enacted on June 3, 1939


United we stand, divided we fall Created the National Settlement Administration with a
capital stock of P20,000,000.
When the Spaniards came to the Philippines, the concept of
encomienda (Royal Land Grants) was introduced. This system Japanese Occupation
grants that Encomienderos must defend his encomienda from The Era of Hukbalahap
external attack, maintain peace and order within, and support the
missionaries. In turn, the encomiendero acquired the right to The Second World War II started in Europe in 1939 and in the
collect tribute from the indios (native). Pacific in 1941.

The system, however, degenerated into abuse of power by the Hukbalahap controlled whole areas of Central Luzon; landlords
encomienderos The tribute soon became land rents to a few who supported the Japanese lost their lands to peasants while
powerful landlords. And the natives who once cultivated the lands those who supported the Huks earned fixed rentals in favor of the
in freedom were transformed into mere share tenants. tenants.

1st Philippine Republic Unfortunately, the end of war also signaled the end of gains
The yoke has finally broken acquired by the peasants.

When the First Philippine Republic was established in 1899, Gen. Upon the arrival of the Japanese in the Philippines in 1942,
Emilio Aguinaldo declared in the Malolos Constitution his intention peasants and workers organizations grew strength. Many peasants
to confiscate large estates, especially the so-called Friar lands. took up arms and identified themselves with the anti-Japanese
group, the HUKBALAHAP (Hukbo ng Bayan Laban sa Hapon).
However, as the Republic was short-lived, Aguinaldos plan was
never implemented. Philippine Republic
The New Republic
American Period
Long live America After the establishment of the Philippine Independence in 1946,
the problems of land tenure remained. These became worst in
Significant legislation enacted during the American Period: certain areas. Thus the Congress of the Philippines revised the
Philippine Bill of 1902 Set the ceilings on the hectarage tenancy law.
of private individuals and corporations may acquire: 16
has. for private individuals and 1,024 has. for Manuel Roxas (1946-1948) enacted the following laws:
corporations. Republic Act No. 34 -- Established the 70-30 sharing
arrangements and regulating share-tenancy contracts.
Land Registration Act of 1902 (Act No. 496) Provided
for a comprehensive registration of land titles under the Republic Act No. 55 -- Provided for a more effective
Torrens system. safeguard against arbitrary ejectment of tenants.

Public Land Act of 1903 introduced the homestead Elpidio Quirino (1948-1953) enacted the following law:
system in the Philippines.
Executive Order No. 355 issued on October 23, 1950 -- Replaced
Tenancy Act of 1933 (Act No. 4054 and 4113) regulated the National Land Settlement Administration with Land Settlement
relationships between landowners and tenants of rice Development Corporation (LASEDECO) which takes over the
(50-50 sharing) and sugar cane lands. responsibilities of the Agricultural Machinery Equipment
Corporation and the Rice and Corn Production Administration.
The Torrens system, which the Americans instituted for the
registration of lands, did not solve the problem completely. Either President Ramon Magsaysay (1953-1957) enacted the
they were not aware of the law or if they did, they could not pay following laws:
the survey cost and other fees required in applying for a Torrens Republic Act No. 1160 of 1954 -- Abolished the
title. LASEDECO and established the National Resettlement
and Rehabilitation Administration (NARRA) to resettle
Commonwealth Period dissidents and landless farmers. It was particularly
Government for the Filipinos aimed at rebel returnees providing home lots and
farmlands in Palawan and Mindanao.
President Manuel L. Quezon espoused the "Social Justice" program
to arrest the increasing social unrest in Central Luzon. Republic Act No. 1199 (Agricultural Tenancy Act of 1954)
-- governed the relationship between landowners and
Significant legislation enacted during Commonwealth Period: tenant farmers by organizing share-tenancy and
1935 Constitution "The promotion of social justice to leasehold system. The law provided the security of
ensure the well-being and economic security of all tenure of tenants. It also created the Court of Agrarian
people should be the concern of the State" Relations.
Republic Act No. 1400 (Land Reform Act of 1955) --
Created the Land Tenure Administration (LTA) which was Proclamation No. 131, July 22, 1987 Instituted the
responsible for the acquisition and distribution of large CARP as a major program of the government. It provided
tenanted rice and corn lands over 200 hectares for for a special fund known as the Agrarian Reform Fund
individuals and 600 hectares for corporations. (ARF), with an initial amount of Php50 billion to cover the
estimated cost of the program from 1987-1992.
Republic Act No. 821 (Creation of Agricultural Credit Executive Order No. 129-A, July 26, 1987 streamlined
Cooperative Financing Administration) -- Provided small and expanded the power and operations of the DAR.
farmers and share tenants loans with low interest rates Republic Act No. 6657, June 10, 1988 (Comprehensive
of six to eight percent. Agrarian Reform Law) An act which became effective
June 15, 1988 and instituted a comprehensive agrarian
President Carlos P. Garcia (1957-1961) reform program to promote social justice and
industrialization providing the mechanism for its
Continued the program of President Ramon Magsaysay. No new implementation and for other purposes. This law is still
legislation passed. the one being implemented at present.

President Diosdado Macapagal (1961-1965) enacted the Executive Order No. 405, June 14, 1990 Vested in the
following law: Land Bank of the Philippines the responsibility to
determine land valuation and compensation for all lands
Republic Act No. 3844 of August 8, 1963 (Agricultural Land Reform covered by CARP.
Code) -- Abolished share tenancy, institutionalized leasehold, set
retention limit at 75 hectares, invested rights of preemption and Executive Order No. 407, June 14, 1990 Accelerated
redemption for tenant farmers, provided for an administrative the acquisition and distribution of agricultural lands,
machinery for implementation, institutionalized a judicial system pasture lands, fishponds, agro-forestry lands and other
of agrarian cases, incorporated extension, marketing and lands of the public domain suitable for agriculture.
supervised credit system of services of farmer beneficiaries.
President Fidel V. Ramos (1992-1998)
The RA was hailed as one that would emancipate Filipino farmers
from the bondage of tenancy. When President Fidel V. Ramos formally took over in 1992, his
administration came face to face with publics who have lost
President Ferdinand Marcos (1965-1986). confidence in the agrarian reform program. His administration
committed to the vision Fairer, faster and more meaningful
Proclamation No. 1081 on September 21, 1972 ushered the Period implementation of the Agrarian Reform Program.
of the New Society. Five days after the proclamation of Martial
Law, the entire country was proclaimed a land reform area and President Fidel V. Ramos enacted the following laws:
simultaneously the Agrarian Reform Program was decreed.
Republic Act No. 7881, 1995 Amended certain
provisions of RA 6657 and exempted fishponds and
President Marcos enacted the following laws:
prawns from the coverage of CARP.
Republic Act No. 6389, (Code of Agrarian Reform) and RA
No. 6390 of 1971 -- Created the Department of Agrarian
Republic Act No. 7905, 1995 Strengthened the
Reform and the Agrarian Reform Special Account Fund. It
implementation of the CARP.
strengthen the position of farmers and expanded the
scope of agrarian reform.
Executive Order No. 363, 1997 Limits the type of lands
that may be converted by setting conditions under which
Presidential Decree No. 2, September 26, 1972 --
limits the type of lands that may be converted by setting
Declared the country under land reform program. It
conditions under which specific categories of agricultural
enjoined all agencies and offices of the government to
land are either absolutely non-negotiable for conversion
extend full cooperation and assistance to the DAR. It also
or highly restricted for conversion.
activated the Agrarian Reform Coordinating Council.
Republic Act No. 8435, 1997 (Agriculture and Fisheries
Presidential Decree No. 27, October 21, 1972 --
Modernization Act AFMA) Plugged the legal loopholes in
Restricted land reform scope to tenanted rice and corn
land use conversion.
lands and set the retention limit at 7 hectares.
Republic Act 8532, 1998 (Agrarian Reform Fund Bill)
President Corazon C. Aquino (1986-1992)
Provided an additional Php50 billion for CARP and
The Constitution ratified by the Filipino people during the extended its implementation for another 10 years.
administration of President Corazon C. Aquino provides under
Section 21 under Article II that The State shall promote President Joseph E. Estrada (1998-2000)
comprehensive rural development and agrarian reform.
ERAP PARA SA MAHIRAP. This was the battle cry that endeared
On June 10, 1988, former President Corazon C. Aquino signed into President Joseph Estrada and made him very popular during the
law Republic Act No. 6657 or otherwise known as the 1998 presidential election.
Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law (CARL). The law became
effective on June 15, 1988. President Joseph E. Estrada initiated the enactment of the
following law:
Subsequently, four Presidential issuances were released in July
1987 after 48 nationwide consultations before the actual law was Executive Order N0. 151, September 1999 (Farmers Trust Fund)
enacted. Allowed the voluntary consolidation of small farm operation into
medium and large scale integrated enterprise that can access
President Corazon C. Aquino enacted the following laws: long-term capital.
Executive Order No. 228, July 16, 1987 Declared full
During his administration, President Estrada launched the
ownership to qualified farmer-beneficiaries covered by
Magkabalikat Para sa Kaunlarang Agraryo or MAGKASAKA. The
PD 27. It also determined the value remaining unvalued
DAR forged into joint ventures with private investors into agrarian
rice and corn lands subject of PD 27 and provided for the
sector to make FBs competitive.
manner of payment by the FBs and mode of
compensation to landowners.
However, the Estrada Administration was short lived. The masses
who put him into office demanded for his ouster.
Executive Order No. 229, July 22, 1987 Provided
mechanism for the implementation of the President Gloria Macapacal-Arroyo (2000-2010)
Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP).
The agrarian reform program under the Arroyo administration is
anchored on the vision To make the countryside economically 5. Partnering with the civil society organizations (CSOs) in the
viable for the Filipino family by building partnership and promoting delivery of LTI services, particularly the large-sized private
social equity and new economic opportunities towards lasting agricultural lands (PAL);
peace and sustainable rural development.
6. Adopting a job-sharing scheme wherein under the ONE-DAR
Land Tenure Improvement - DAR will remain vigorous in concept, provinces will share responsibilities (low-LAD provinces
implementing land acquisition and distribution component of with high LAD provinces) to minimize the need to hire new
CARP. The DAR will improve land tenure system through land personnel; and
distribution and leasehold.
Provision of Support Services - CARP not only involves the 7. Increasing the utilization of the services of geodetic engineers
distribution of lands but also included package of support services to assist the provincial and municipal offices in land acquisition
which includes: credit assistance, extension services, irrigation considering the difficulty of hiring new personnel and the
facilities, roads and bridges, marketing facilities and training and demands of a post-2014 scenario.
technical support programs.

Infrastrucre Projects - DAR will transform the agrarian reform Under President Aquinos administration, the DARs Program
communities (ARCs), an area focused and integrated delivery of Beneficiaries Development (PBD) priorities are geared in:
support services, into rural economic zones that will help in the
creation of job opportunities in the countryside. 1. Undertaking convergence initiatives with rural development
agencies to complement the resources and streamline the efforts
KALAHI ARZone - The KALAHI Agrarian Reform (KAR) Zones were of DAR, DA and DENR;
also launched. These zones consists of one or more municipalities
with concentration of ARC population to achieve greater agro- 2. Inking public-private partnerships (PPPs) develop models of
productivity. collaboration and business models in AR areas with the
participation of the CSOs, academe, research and development
Agrarian Justice - To help clear the backlog of agrarian cases, DAR institutions and LGUs;
will hire more paralegal officers to support undermanned
adjudicatory boards and introduce quota system to compel 3. Expanding official development assistance (ODA) portfolio in
adjudicators to work faster on agrarian reform cases. DAR will order to augment incomes for PBD;
respect the rights of both farmers and landowners.
4. Integrating LTI and PBD on a province-to-province basis;

5. Shifting focus of low-LAD balance provinces to PBD; and


President Benigno Simeon Noynoy C. Aquino III (2010
2016) 6. Unlocking credit facilities for the agrarian reform beneficiaries
through capacity development for credit providers and farmer-
Under the governance of President Noynoy Aquino, the DAR which borrowers.
is the lead agency for CARP implementation is bent on sustaining
the gains of agrarian reform through its three major components
Land Tenure Improvement (LTI), Program Beneficiaries To speed up resolution of AR related cases, the Agrarian Justice
Development (PBD) and Agrarian Justice Delivery (AJD). The Delivery component is geared at:
following are the strategic directions of the Aquino Administration
for the agrarian reform program: 1. Putting the legal framework in place to expedite the LAD
process and undertake PBD lawyering to ensure ARBs free and
To substantially complete asset reform as mandated by R.A. No. informed consent on agribusiness agreements;
9700 by:
2. Developing common templates and legal outlines in order to
1. Completing the land acquisition and distribution (LAD) in the rationalize the DAR lawyers and paralegals appreciation and
Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program Extension with Reforms decision on cases;
(CARPER) or Republic Act 9700 balance through: Focus on large-
sized private agricultural lands; Redeployment of competent DAR 3. Improving the capabilities of DAR lawyers and legal officers;
personnel to the 20 high LAD provinces; Streamline LAD processes and
and procedures; and Enhance the database of landholdings for
ease in targeting and monitoring the LAD; 4. Utilizing information, communication technology (ICT) to
enhance legal work.
2. Prioritizing the subdivision of collective Certificates of Land
Ownership Awards (CLOAs) involving LBP-compensable lands; Together with the efforts to fight graft and corruption by the
President, it is imperative to have institutional reforms within DAR
3. Fast tracking the documentation and settlement of landowner as acomplement to the abovementioned DAR components as well
compensation for already distributed lands; as give credence, transparency and accountability at all sectors of
the DAR bureaucracy.
4. Synergizing and rationalizing the efforts of the CARP
implementing agencies in all processes of LAD;