Farmers’ houses burned, demolished in Bulacan by company goons

One of the farmers’ houses in barangay San Mateo, Norzagaray, Bulacan burned by the goons hired by a private company. (Photo coutesy of Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas)

The demolition comes as the latest in a series of operations conducted by Royal Moluccan Realty Holdings, Inc. (RMRHI), beginning in early 2018.

By JUSTIN UMALI
Bulatlat.com

LAGUNA – Three houses in barangay San Mateo, Norzagaray, Bulacan were burned and 12 others were demolished by goons hired by a private company, Oct. 23. One minor was reportedly injured, according to an alert released by Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP).

The demolition team arrived 7:00 a.m. yesterday and presented a permit issued by the Municipal Engineering Office of Norzagaray before proceeding with the demolition. According to Jovita Torres, leader of the Samahang Magsasaka ng San Mateo (SAMA SAMA), no court order was presented.

Republic Act 7279, or the Urban Development and Housing Act of 1992 states that a notice of demolition must be issued by a court and be given to residents at least 30 days before the date of eviction or demolition.

KMP also reported that the goons also stole P28,000 from Violeta Falparan’s house. The money would have been used to buy carabao, KMP said. Falparan’s house was also burned after she and her companions went to the local police to report the demolition.

Farmers’ crops and even their personal belongings were also destroyed. A sack of palay (unhusked rice grains) and half a sack of rice were scattered by the goons all over the place.

The demolition comes as the latest in a series of operations conducted by Royal Moluccan Realty Holdings, Inc. (RMRHI), beginning in early 2018.

Farmers in San Mateo have lived on the 75.5 hectare land since the 1950’s. It was only in November 2005 that RMRHI managed to purchase the deed to the land and began appealing to be exempt from land reform.

Bulacan farmers sell their vegetables during the Bagsakan pop-up market last Oct. 20 at the Quezon City Memorial Circle.

Threats culminated on February 20, 2018 when a 50-strong contingent of Norzagaray police, with Department of Agrarian Reform Adjucation Board officials, private security guards, and another 30-strong team demolished 26 houses and injured at least two residents.

The House of Representatives, through former Anakpawis Rep. Ariel Casilao, filed a resolution to inquire on the February 2018 demolition and the “lethargic implementation of land distribution by DAR.”

KMP, and SAMA SAMA maintained that the DAR Adjucation Board repeatedly favored RMRHI in its decisions despite DAR issuing a Notice of Coverage for distribution as early as May 15, 2006.

Despite continued threats from RMRHI, more than 50 houses still remain in the community. The residents recently joined the Bagsakan pop-up market at the Quezon City Memorial Circle last October 20 to sell their vegetable produce.()

Share This Post