By Neil Jerome C. Morales
The Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) was a land reform law mandated by Republic Act No. 6657, signed by President Corazon Aquino on
According to RA 6657, CARP aims “for a more equitable distribution and ownership of land.” It meant to distribute lands to farmers in a span of 10 years, but was extended by the 11th Congress due to delays in land distribution and lack of budget allocation.
Section 3 of RA 6657 defined agrarian reform as the “redistribution of lands, regardless of crops or fruits produced, to farmers and regular farm workers who are landless” and “all other arrangements alternative to the physical redistribution of lands, such as production or profit-sharing, labor administration and the distribution of shares of stock which will allow beneficiaries to receive a just share of the fruits of the lands they work.”
Vast agricultural lands are distributed to the farmers tilling the land, whereas only a maximum of five hectares can be retained by the landlords, and three hectares for each of their children.
However, a common CARP loophole was that landlords escaped relinquishing their lands through land reclassifications. Lands classified by local zoning ordinances as residential, commercial and industrial lands are excluded from CARP.
Department of Agrarian Reform website, http://www.dar.gov.ph