DAR vows to provide new land for Ati members, assures ‘compassionate’ action

/ 02:41 PM April 11, 2024
DAR vows to provide new land for Ati members, assures ‘compassionate’ action

Agrarian Reform Secretary Conrado Estrella III | PHOTO: Official website of DAR

Agrarian Reform Secretary Conrado Estrella III assured Boracay Ati Tribal Association members that they will be provided government land, saying that the Marcos administration will treat the matter with compassion while upholding the law.

In a statement, Estrella said that through Executive Order No. 75, series 2019, the DAR will not only provide about one to three hectares of land but also provide the Ati members “with all assistance and support services.”


The Agrarian Reform chief made the assurance after it was found that Boracay Island was not suitable for farming and that there was no basis to award Certificates of Land Ownership Award (CLOAs) to the Ati members.

“We treat people with compassion, but we must uphold the law relative to the issue of Ati in Boracay,” Estrella said during a press conference held after the distribution of CLOAs in Negros Occidental.


“The Bureau of Soils and Water Management under the Department of Agriculture declared the landholding not suitable for agriculture which should be exempted from DAR coverage under Republic Act 6657, or the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program,” he stressed.

Estrella also noted that that the period of issuing the notice of coverage of private lands had already expired last June 30, 2014, when the DAR issued the CLOAs to the ATI in 2018.

He noted that the 44 members of the Boracay Ati Tribal Association preferred the subdivision of the 1,282 square meter property among themselves, so they each own about 30 square meters, meaning the land is not suitable for agriculture.

“They cannot invoke Executive Order 75 here because it is not even a government-owned land since there is a legitimate claimant. EO 75 is a Malacanang order directing all government agencies to identify government land that could be distributed to qualified beneficiaries,” the Agrarian Reform chief said.

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TAGS: Ati members, government land, land
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