THE Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) in Negros Occidental-North has distributed a total of over 160 hectares of land in northern part of the province.

In Calatrava town, some 70.3066 hectares were awarded to 56 agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) in an individual certificate of land ownership award (Cloa) distribution and installation rites recently.

The landholdings formerly owned by Agnes Jison, Dennis Jison, and Victor Jison are located in Barangay Minapasok.

Municipal Agrarian Reform Program Officer Loreto Pagliawan, who spoke at the activity, explained to the farmers their tax duties and other responsibilities.

"This is what our ancestors used to fight for, to have their land. Let this be a reminder to everyone this is a momentous feat because it is proof of the receipt of your very own land to cultivate," he told ARBs.

In Cadiz City, 96 hectares were also awarded to 81 ARBs recently.

The landholdings formerly owned by Valja Development Corporation are located in Barangay Caduha-an.

Municipal Agrarian Reform Program Officer Rodrigo Jose Villaluna told farmer-beneficiaries that "this awarded land serves as fuel to your soul to alleviate your life."

The DAR said the land acquisition and distribution is under the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program Extension with Reforms (Carper).

In its mandate, public and private agricultural landholdings are acquired by the government to be distributed to tenants, farmers, farmworkers and other tillers who are qualified to become ARBs.

This is in the form of Cloas covering one contiguous tract or several parcels of land cumulated up to a maximum of three hectares per ARB.