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DAR chief Estrella says Hacienda Tinang case resolved, 450 titles to be released

Agrarian Reform Secretary Conrado Estrella III said Tuesday the case on Hacienda Tinang has been resolved, adding that more than 400 land titles will be released to the beneficiaries.

"We are happy to inform everybody that our formula of multiple shuttle diplomacy and constantly holding dialogues with stakeholders finally we were able to resolve the case at mayroon tayong nailabas na decision na tungkol dito sa Hacienda Tinang," Estrella said at a Palace press briefing.

He said, in a matter of two weeks, the Department of Agrarian Reform will already distribute land titles "to forge peace and prosperity to farmers," adding that the decision was already final and executory.

"We were able to resolve it finally and the wonderful thing about it after we released the decision on this case, wala hong nag-file ng appeal, walang nag-protesta and as a matter of it, ito ay final na ho at executory dahil walang nag-file ng appeal at nagprotesta," he said.

Estrella said 450 titles would be released to the farmers and their families in the coming weeks. He said this amounts to 200 hectares of land.

To recall, the Hacienda Tinang farmers were issued a collective Certificate of Land Ownership and Award by DAR way back in 1995 but have yet to be granted individual titles.

The plight of Hacienda Tinang was highlighted anew after the Capas Municipal Trial Court dismissed charges of illegal assembly and malicious mischief against the farmers who participated in a cultivation activity to push for immediate land distribution.

Meanwhile, Estrella said he is set to sign more resolutions in the coming days to solve other land issues.

"Aabot na kami ng 1,200 by tomorrow, makaka-ano na kami... makaka-catch up na kami ng kalahati," he said.

He also admitted there have been delays in the signing of resolutions because DAR lacks legal counsels.

"Ang problema namin kaya kami 'di makaarangkada ay kulang kami sa mga abogado. And we can only hire lawyers initially na ang sweldo ay only P50,000 and it will be difficult for us to hire credible and capable lawyers with only P50,000 a month," Estrella said.—AOL, GMA Integrated News