DAR team harassed in Humabol-claimed lot

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DAR team harassed in Humabol-claimed lot

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Tension erupted as a member of the Hukbong sa Mag-uumang Bol-anon (Humabol) disrupted the team from Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) provincial office who went to the town of Trinidad to survey the land set for distribution to farmer beneficiaries.

Trinidad Police Station received a call from Barangay San Vicente Councilor Vilma Reyes at around 3:30 p.m. on June 15, reporting about a drunk person harassing the personnel of DAR provincial office who came to the area to conduct a survey on the portion of land of the Bohol Cattle Corp. (BCC).

One Wendell Autentico suddenly appeared and ordered the DAR team to stop the survey and tried to grab the pole with prisem used as an instrument in surveying land.

Autentico uttered, “Ayaw ni sukda, sige tunob (Don’t survey this [area]. Go ahead, step in…)” as if to warn of something he would do if the survey team proceeds.

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He was addressing Wilfredo Cuadra, the surveyor.

Reyes tried to explain and pacify them, but Autentico instead shouted the slanderous words, “Wala ka kahibaw og unsay balaud sa Humabol. Buang kang kagawara ka. Wa kay buot kay wala kay katungod dire kay dili na ka membro (You are not aware of the law of Humabol. You are a crazy councilor. You are imbecile because you have no right (or authority) here because you are no longer a member)”, while pointing his finger at the barangay councilor.

This prompted the DAR team leader, Arnel Cabulao, to order his men to stop the survey and pack up.

Autentico was then brought to Garcia Memorial Provincial Hospital (GMPH) in Talibon for alcohol breath test before being brought to Trinidad Police Station for proper disposition.

Autentico, a 37-year-old resident of purok 7 Annex in barangay San Vicente, Trinidad, married, is a member of Humabol.

He serves as driver of the service vehicle, Elf truck, of the rice mill squatting the CARP-covered land that is up for distribution to farmer-beneficiaries.

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For his acts, Autentico had been arrested for drunkenness which is a violation of a municipal ordinance, and also faces a complaint of slander.

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DAR, for its part, is considering filing a case on obstruction in the implementation of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) against Autentico in relation, a violation of Republic Act 6657 or the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law (CARL).

DAR cites Chapter XV, Section 73(d) of the law, particularly on the willful prevention or obstruction by any person, association or entity of the implementation of the CARP in the eyed complaint against Autentico.

Among the issues raised by farmer-members against Trinidad-Talibon Integrated Farmers Association (TTIFA) which is under the HUMABOL umbrella is the use by the officers of TTIFA-HUMABOL of the CARLP lots.

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TTIFA built a rice mill where the produce of the TTIFA communal farm is stored, milled and brought to other places in Bohol, Cebu and Leyte and which income from the communal farm and rice mill are not accounted clearly to the farmer-members.

The farmer-members are being hooked into volunteer to plow, and plant the rice in the communal farm without pay but are not given share of the rice mill’s income.

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If the members refuse the orders of the officers to work in the land or to join mass protests against the government in Tagbilaran rallies, they will be forcefully evicted from the land they are tilling, or their houses will be occupied by other loyal members.

In 2001, a member was killed by one of its senior officers because of the farmer’s claim to this CARP land.

What the farmers want is for DAR to fasttrack the distribution of the lots and give titles to the farmer beneficiaries and so the survey was conducted on June 15, but Autentico disrupted the DAR personnel. 

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