Akala ko ba sabi ninyo sundin natin ang batas, huwag kami maningil ng lagpas sa batas.
Nag-file kayo ng motion for extension of time to develop the property, DALAWANG TAON na expired yung Conversion Order ninyo. Sabi ng batas, dapat six months before the expiration.
Nagfile kayo ng appeal at kung anu-anong legal pleading, revoked na SEC registration ng korporasyon. May certificate kami galing SEC. Gusto niyo makita? Malinaw na malinaw. Madami akong absent nung law school, pero hindi ako absent nung araw na sinabi ng teacher namin na pag walang registration, walang juridical personality, hindi pwede maghabla.
Gusto niyo maextend ang Conversion Order ninyo, hindi ninyo naman sinubmit mga hinihingi sa inyong requirements sa ilalim ng batas. Walang development plan. Walang performance bond. Walang kopya ng papeles ng korporasyon.
Bukod dun, akala ko ba may moratorium on conversion?
Pakshet, nanalo pa din kayo.
So I’ve been told it’s part of the game. Over and over, I’ve been told. In law school we were taught by the best teachers never to love the law, but to love the idea of stretching it to its limits, even breaking those limits, in order to create windows and inroads for those have no voice. I have retained this message in my head, and have no reverence for the law, or respect for self-important (oftentimes pot-bellied) lawyers who brandish the law as if it were a scythe and who look at the legal profession as an exclusive brotherhood.
Be that as it may, nothing prepared me for the sheer heartbreak of a lost case – nay, a lost CLEAR case. Hindi ko sinasabing hindi ko maintindihan, hindi ko sinasabing hindi ko matanggap, sinasabi ko lang masakit. Masakit talaga. Sobra.
I remember when I decided to go into agrarian reform. It was in 2006, just two years ago, in Bondoc Peninsula, Quezon, where I joined an International Observers Mission. Prior to that, I knew nothing about agrarian reform, I was not in the least bit interested in farmers’ rights. I didn’t even want to go to the Observers’ Mission at first because I was recovering from an illness and had frequent visits to the hospital. I went anyway, because well, it was part of my work. And I do my work. So we met up with the farmers, and for three days, ate with them, walked with them, visited their leaders in jail, even sang songs with them.
And in that three days, I knew what I wanted to do with the rest of my life.
I guess some people would laugh at how affected I am because of the loss of one case in a medium-sized landholding in Batangas. I guess it does seem funny, especially if you saw me Thursday late at night, crying hard, over a decision of the Office of the President, stopping for a while to breathe for air, and then crying again over fear that the agrarian reform program would not be extended after June 10.
I’m not an AR old-timer, pasensya na if I still haven’t acquired the sophistication to insulate my heart from my work. Pasensya na if reversals make me cry, and withdrawn notices of coverage cut me deep. This doesn’t mean I’m frustrated and walking away. This doesn’t mean that I don’t agree that this is “part of the game” or that I don’t believe that there will be more defeats to follow.
This only means I’m a kid, two years out of law school, asking to be allowed to cry for her first lost agrarian reform case.
* For a news story on the decision, click here. Note however that the handling NGO for this case is Task Force Mapalad (TFM) and not Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP). The article might have given that impression. Also, lack of SEC registration is not our only ground, but also other clear violations of the Conversion Order and Administrative Order 1, Series of 2002. I was only quoted on the issue of SEC registration.