THE Provincial Government will not tolerate any illegal takeover of the Capitol-owned Negros First Ranch in Barangay Sta. Rosa, Murcia, Negros Occidental, Governor Alfredo Marañon Jr. said Tuesday, July 12.
This developed after a number of agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) has reportedly occupied a portion of the ranch Tuesday.
There’s “no legal basis” for the ARBs to take over the land, adding that “they’re just taking the law into their hands.”
The governor said the rallyists were later dispersed after a dialogue was set in the afternoon at the barangay hall.
Earlier, the Provincial Government had lost its petition to exclude from the coverage of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (Carp) the properties it purchased for the ranch.
Provincial Legal Officer Jose Maria Valencia said he told the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) to talk to the people protesting “because they’re not even beneficiaries.”
He said they want to hold a dialogue with the protestors because they are asking for a livelihood program from the provincial government.
The ARBs were not declared as beneficiaries as the land is still a government property, Valencia added.
Even if Carp has denied the petition of the Capitol, it doesn’t make them the beneficiaries as there is a process involved, he added.
“When they entered the property, that is already a ground for disqualification,” Valencia said.