Monday, December 05, 2011

Hacienda Luisita

There was the bloody Mendiola Massacre. There were the bitter strikes of the farmers staged in the Hacienda. There were the gross killings in Tarlac intimately connected with the same Hacienda – inclusive of the murder of a good and kind Aglipayan Bishop simply showing concern and extending assistance to the aggrieved farmers. One big piece of land owned by one big dynasty causative of one big long standing social problem in the Country – this is the Hacienda Luisita.

“SC junks Luisita stock option deal.” – so read the headline of a national broadsheet dated 24 November 2011. This was even followed with the news that no less than 14 Justices unanimously agreed to a “total distribution of land.” This is the stark reversal of the maneuvering of a long previous government that supposedly had agrarian reform as the centerpiece of its avowed socio-economic program. But specifically in the case of Hacienda Luisita, instead of parting with the land in favor of the farmers, some kind of a stock distribution was ingeniously conceived and implemented.

Question: With the decision of the Supreme Court, is justice finally achieved in conjunction with the crimes generated by the Hacienda Luisita phenomenon? Answer: No. Reason: The judgment does not resurrect the lives lost in the above said massacre and other killings, nor does it compensate those who lost their loved ones. Much less does it administer justice upon those responsible for the crimes. This notable criminal issue seems to have gone into complete oblivion.

Question: With the decision of the Supreme Court, is the Hacienda Luisita fiasco resolved? Answer: No. Reason: All the government agencies that are supposed to execute the judgment, are under the sovereign rule of a Chief Executive that precisely belongs to the wealthy and powerful clan behind the Hacienda. Furthermore, it is not a secret that there is some kind of a duel going on between the Executive Department and the Judiciary. This cannot but have a bearing on what the Department would do with the decision.

Question: With the decision of the Supreme Court, at what monetary cost to the farmers will the land be distributed to them? Would it be at the same cost price when the Hacienda was purchased from Tabacalera – as precisely agreed upon in its sale? Answer: Who knows? Question: Where did the financing of the business hub of the Hacienda really came from? Answer: Investigate. Question: Where did the financing of the piling of that tall and long barrier to protect the Hacienda from lahar, really came from? Answere: Inquire.

There are people who say that the Hacienda Luisita is some kind of a “curse” to everybody therein concerned – farmers and owners alike. While this may not be exactly true, it would be however pretty hard to say that it is a “blessing” to the farmers in general. But to the Hacienda majority owners, it has been and it still is!