BAGUIO CITY (Feb. 8 ) — Ifugao Governor Teodoro Baguilat Jr. questioned the conflicting policies on land utilization being implemented by several government agencies saying it stifles the development of land resources.
Baguilat said conflicting land use policies of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) and National Commission on Indigenous People (NCIP) causes confusion among the people.
“Let us take forest lands as an example. The NCIP recognizes indigenous peoples maintaining communal forests as owners, the DENR, however, says forest reserves are owned by the government,” Beguilat said.
Baguilat added people get confused which land utilization policy to follow, whether to apply for the Certificate of Land Ownership Award (CLOA) with DAR or the Certificate of Ancestral Land Title (CALT).
Baguilat further said government agencies should harmonize land utilization policies to aid the people in owning their land and local government units in their land use plans.
In this light, the Ifugao provincial government will hold a land congress to help settle land policy conflicts among the said agencies. Baguilat said initial preparations are underway and the NCIP already showed interest. The said congress will be held sometime in March. # Kim N. Quitasol for NORDIS