Personnel from the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) endure heat to validate agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) in Hilongos, Leyte’s farthest village. (DAR Hilongos)

HILONGOS, Leyte – While many people now just want to stay in a cool environment, personnel from the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) endured the heat in reaching this town’s farthest village to validate agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) covered by the Support to Parcelization of Lands for Individual Titling (SPLIT) project.

Heeding to the order of Agrarian Reform Secretary Conrado Estrella III to complete the validation of ARBs by the third quarter of this year, Municipal Agrarian Reform Program Officer (MARPO) Ruben Rebato, together with his field validation team (FVT), proceeded to Barangay San Antonio, which is some 30 kilometers away from the town proper on Wednesday, April 3.

Rebato reported that they had validated more than 50 ARBs listed in three collective certificates of land ownership Award (CLOAs) covering an aggregate area of 132.6 hectares of farmlands located in the said village.

He shared that they had to hike more than five kilometers uphill for about two hours to reach this village situated on top of a mountain.

In the validation process, ARBs are being checked whether they are still the ones in possession of the lots awarded under the government’s Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP).

If found out that the actual tiller is no longer the registered ARB, an investigation report will be prepared by the FVT and file a petition for the disqualification of the registered ARB and reallocation for the actual tiller or qualified ARB to receive the individual CLOA.

SPLIT project subdivides lots covered by collective CLOAs and replaces them with electronically-generated individual land titles to improve land tenure security and strengthen the property rights of the ARBs.

Meanwhile, on the same occasion, Rebato reactivated by reorganizing the Barangay Agrarian Reform Council (BARC) of Barangay San Antonio considering the important role the latter plays in the implementation of the World Bank-funded SPLIT project.