Farmers urge PNP to form special desk for land row
LUCENA CITY, Philippines—Land reform beneficiaries in Quezon province have urged the police to create specialized desks to handle complaints involving land disputes.
“We’ve been continuously facing harassment cases because of the limited knowledge of police investigators about the intricacies of the agrarian reform law,” Maribel Luzara, president of Kilusang Magbubukid ng Bondoc Peninsula, said on Tuesday.
“Unfortunately, poor and helpless farmers suffer from the police’s ignorance,” said Jansept Geronimo, spokesperson of the Kilusan Para sa Tunay na Repormang Agraryo at Katarungang Panlipunan.
Geronimo urged Agrarian Reform Secretary Rafael Mariano to help them in pushing the creation of agrarian desks which, he said, has been on the drawing board since 2013. Policemen trained on and are knowledgeable on agrarian reform laws and land-related issues would be tapped to man these desks.
Luzara said former owners of Hacienda Matias and their overseers in San Francisco town have filed at least 25 cases, mostly involving coconut theft, against more than 50 farmers, all of them on the list of the Department of Agrarian Reform’s land reform beneficiaries. —DELFIN T. MALLARI JR.
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