phnoy & kris: feeling entitled (updated)
“In agrarian reform, there are two objectives: number one, empower the farmers so that they could have their own land to till. Second, don’t exhaust the capital. There should be just compensation for the land owner. The capital that will be returned to the landowner could be used to invest in other endeavors,” he said.
“The two objectives should have been met. One sector should not be favored over the other,” he added.
that’s the prez’s statement on the SC decision ordering the distribution of Hacienda Luisita to the farmers. he wants just compensation for the family. daang matuwid? he should read stephanie dychiu’s history of the hacienda buttressed by james putzel’s 1992 book A Captive Land: The Politics of Agrarian Reform in the Philippines.
In 1957, Magsaysay talked to Ninoy Aquino about the possibility of Ninoy’s father-in-law, Jose Cojuangco, Sr. acquiring Central Azucarera de Tarlac and Hacienda Luisita from the Spaniards. The Spaniards wanted to sell because of the Huk rebellion and chronic labor problems. [emphasis mine] Jose Cojuangco, Sr. received significant preferential treatment and assistance from the government to facilitate his takeover of Hacienda Luisita and Central Azucarera de Tarlac in 1957.
…To acquire a controlling interest in Central Azucarera de Tarlac, Cojuangco had to pay the Spaniards in dollars. He turned to the Manufacturer’s Trust Company in New York for a 10-year, $2.1 million loan. Dollars were tightly regulated in those times. To ease the flow of foreign exchange for Cojuangco’s loan, the Central Bank of the Philippines deposited part of the country’s international reserves with the Manufacturer’s Trust Company in New York.
The Central Bank did this on the condition that Cojuangco would simultaneously purchase the 6,443-hectare Hacienda Luisita, “with a view to distributing this hacienda to small farmers in line with the Administration’s social justice program.” (Central Bank Monetary Board Resolution No. 1240, August 27, 1957).
To finance the purchase of Hacienda Luisita, Cojuangco turned to the GSIS (Government Service Insurance System). His application for a P7 million loan said that 4,000 hectares of the hacienda would be made available to bonafide sugar planters, while the balance 2,453 hectares would be distributed to barrio residents who will pay for them on installment.
The GSIS approved a P5.9 million loan, on the condition that Hacienda Luisita would be “subdivided among the tenants who shall pay the cost thereof under reasonable terms and conditions”. (GSIS Resolution No. 1085, May 7, 1957; GSIS Resolution No. 3202, November 25, 1957)
Later, Jose Cojuangco, Sr. requested that the phrase be amended to “. . . shall be sold at cost to tenants, should there be any” (GSIS Resolution No. 356, February 5, 1958). This phrase would be cited later on as justification not to distribute the hacienda’s land.
…“Ang pagkakaintindi ng mga ninuno naming manggagawang-bukid ng Hacienda Luisita noon, within 10 years, babayaran na [ng mga Cojuangco] ang utang nila sa gubyerno. Pagdating ng 1967, ang lupa ay sa magsasaka na (The way our elders, the farm workers of Hacienda Luisita, understood things at that time, within 10 years, the Cojuangcos were going to pay back the money they borrowed from the government. By 1967, the land would belong to the farmers),” says Lito Bais, one of the present-day leaders of the United Luisita Workers Union (ULWU). Bais was born on the hacienda in 1957, the year before the Cojuangco family took over. His mother was also born on the hacienda.
read also ronalyn v. olea‘s Farmers slam Aquino’s call for ‘just compensation’ for Hacienda Luisita land
“It is the height of callousness that President Benigno Simeon Aquino III now has the gall to demand for land compensation for his extended family,” Anakpawis Rep. Rafael Mariano said.
Mariano, also chairman of the Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP), said that since 1957, the Cojuangco-Aquino clan “has made a milking cow out of Hacienda Luisita sugar estate and amassed wealth by exploiting farmers and farmworkers.”
In 1957, the Cojuangcos acquired the Hacienda Luisita land through a government loan with a condition that the land shall be distributed to the farmers after ten years. Land distribution never took place until now.
“The nerve,” KMP deputy secretary general Randall Echanis said, “They have used government money to acquire the hacienda in the late 1950’s and have made a fortune for more than half a century now. And now, they want the government to pay for the land.”
and winnie monsod‘s SC’s downslide and verdict on Hacienda Luisita
Concurring and dissenting opinions were written by Corona (that the stock distribution option should be declared unconstitutional—and I think he has the right of it), Bersamin, Sereno (who thinks that the landowners must be compensated at current market value and not at the value prevailing in 1989) and Brion who, bless his heart (although it doesn’t make up for the fact that he did not stand up for his decision in the Fasap case), also wanted that the FWBs should be paid rentals for the use and possession of their land starting Nov. 21, 1989.
Corona’s opinion, in particular, had some great prose regarding the principles of genuine agrarian reform and social justice.
But suspicions still arise, ranging, on one end, that the Corona Court is doing this to get back at P-Noy; and, on the other end, that the decision actually contains poison pill provisions that will redound to the benefit of the landowners and the disadvantage of the farmers.
It was claimed, in 1987, when the Cory Constitution was in place and with a new Congress elected, that Cory had already divested her hacienda shares.
When she had divested her shares, and to whom, was never bared by her and her then Malacañang.
Under the divestment law, the shares, when divested, cannot be divested, through sale or donation, to any relative up to the fourth degree of consanguinity.
What this means, in the case of Cory, is that she was barred by the law to divest her hacienda shares to any of her brothers and sisters, or even her children, or any relative up to the fourth degree of consanguinity.
So, if she had truly divested her shares, to whom did she sell or donate them?
What it looks like today is that despite Cory having claimed that she had already divested her shares in Hacienda Luisita, she never did.
This was evident after Cory died and the inheritance thing had to come about.
It was being claimed by Noynoy, through his spokesman as well as his lapdog senators, that Noynoy’s share in the hacienda was minimal, as he merely owns one-fifth out of one-sixth of the total shares that would have gone to him and his sisters. This was said in a bid to downplay Noynoy’s personal interest in the hacienda ruling by the high court.
Noynoy’s spokesman even went further. He claimed that Noynoy had already divested his shares, following the law. In other words, the claim was that Noynoy had no interest at all left in the hacienda, which from all indications is a bare-faced lie.
What is being forgotten by the Palace and its puppies in Congress, is the fact that if Cory, as she claimed then, had already divested her shares, neither one of her children — all five of them — could have inherited her shares. Because if true, given the law on divestments of the President and even the Cabinet members, how then could her children have inherited her shares, if she had divested them, and to non-relatives?
It stands to reason that even the “sainted” Cory had lied about having divested her shares.
Now the son also says he has already divested his hacienda shares. Again it is asked: If he has done so, to whom were the shares divested? When were they divested and for how much were the shares sold?
and now here’s kris, who on nationwide tv used to flash jewelry na katas daw ng hacienda luisita, on twitter:
@itsmekrisaquinoKris Aquino We respect the Supreme Court, we survived even when they took everything from us, including our Dad’s life- & we will survive even this.
feeling api siya. what a scream. to top it all, hacienda luisita seems mortgaged to the hilt. read miriam grace a. go’s Family’s wealth depends on Noynoy’s presidency.
HLI does not have enough money to pay its obligations. For every P1 worth of assets, the amount of its obligation is almost double at P1.74.
i wouldn’t be surprised if the SC decision is for naught (or at least will require so much further litigation) because HLI is, it would seem, already bankrupt. na-ilabas na ang pera, at na-mortgage na ang lupa, at wala nang itinira, correct me if i’m wrong. say ng isang cassandra:
how do you shame the cojuangcos to do the right thing? if kris is representative, you can’t.