44 families receive land titles in Legazpi
By Cet Dematera
Some 44 landless families have finally received recently the titles of the land they have been occupying for more than 50 years under the government’s “Handog Titulo” program.
The distribution was led by officials of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) in Bicol and the Legazpi City government.
Present during the hand-over of land titles at the covered court of Barangay Sabang in Legazpi City were: Mayor Noel E. Rosal; DENR Bicol Regional Executive Director Francisco Milla Jr.; and Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office (PENRO) chief Jerry Arena.
Also present during the ceremony were: Legazpi City Vice Mayor Bobby Cristobal; Vice President of the Liga ng mga Barangay Ismael Santillan, and the city councilors
Rosal said that the realization of the land title distribution was in line with the commitment of the city government to give occupants the chance to own the public land they have been occupying for a long time already.
He also recognized the efforts of the city council for passing a resolution of support that expedited the land title distribution.
“Now that you are already holding the titles of your land, it means you are now the legitimate owners of your land,” Rosal told the recipients, whose houses sit along the coastline of Barangay Sabang that is facing the panoramic Albay Gulf.
Arena, on the other hand, said that the 44 recipient families belong to the first batch of the total of 90 qualified beneficiaries of DENR’s “ Handog Titulo” program.
“The land titles for the remaining 46 families are now in the final processing. And maybe next month we will notify them for the distribution of their land titles”, Arena announced during the ceremony.
Arena said his office is also taking the initiative of identifying potential recipients of their “Handog Titulo” program in other barangays of Legazpi with public lands.
He said that qualified for land titling are those residents occupying not more 500 square meter of public land.
The recipients were all smiling with happiness as they received the land titles.
William Orolfo, a land title recipient, admitted that he never had a peace of mind through the years that they have been occupying their land.
“I am always anxious that anytime we will be evicted since we do not have a proof that we are the legitimate owner of the lot we are occupying. But this time, I am very happy that at last we are now the owner of our land. Thanks to the “Handog Titulo” program of the government,” Orolfo said.