LHI Corp: No landgrabbing in Porac

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Friday, January 17, 2014


CLARK FREEPORT -- Officials of the LHI Corporation denied the allegations of militant groups that there is a land grabbing and harassment of farmers at the Hacienda Dolores in Porac town.

Jun Malto, lawyer of the LHI Corporation, clarified that the recent land dispute clash where a farmer was killed and a guard seriously injured, happened inside the firm’s property which is covered with transfer certificate of titles (TCT).

According to Malto, the titles are clean with no liens and encumbrances. He also claimed that the property is excluded from the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program of the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) which issued an Order of Finality in 2006.

The property has been classified as industrial, residential and commercial use, Malto stressed.

“Apparently, they (farmers and residents) were misled into thinking that the land was public land with contested ownership and not privately-titled property,” Malto said.

He added that “this misconception appears to be prevalent among those insisting on the claim which has no meritorious basis.”

“We are truly saddened that Aniban members and sympathizers are misled this way. And yet groups of Aniban members continue to congregate and harass the guard post. Let us respect the rule of law so no further violent incidents will occur. There is a legal process for claims,” Malto said.

Ed Coronel, LHI Social Development project director, said that majority of Hacienda Dolores residents have been peaceful and supportive of development and the company’s initiative.

Hundreds of residents are occupying about 27 hectares of land owned by LHI Corporation, according to Coronel.

The company has agreed to donate the land occupied so that the settlers will not be displaced, he said.

The site of the school and church was donated and the company is in the process of documentation on the donation for some 229 settlers.

“In spite of the harassment of some radical claimants and interest groups, we will continue our social development work to benefit the majority in the community,” Coronel said.

“We are saddened by the incident and we sympathize with all the victims. We are fully cooperating with the investigation,” he added.

Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on January 18, 2014.

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