A group supporting indigenous tribes in General Santos City in South Cotabato has decried alleged connivance of some high officials of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources in Region 12 (DENR 12) in fraudulent titling of ancestral land domain.
Jonathan Jamir, chairman of Arise Christian Homeowners Association, told The Manila Times that thousands of hectares in General Santos under lease holding agreement were applied by wealthy persons for titling in agreement with indigenous tribes through the application of Republic Act 8371 or the Indigenous Peoples Right Act (IPRA).
Jamir said the moneyed ones were taking advantage of the indigenous tribes, particularly the B’laan, by disguising themselves as ancestral land domain claimants allegedly in connivance with some officials in DENR 12 who facilitate the claims through fraudulent means.
He revealed that facilitation for titling application and approval for a one-hectare property costs about P1 million with additional P3 million alleged grease money for the DENR 12 officials for every five hectares approved.
Meanwhile, DENR 12 Executive Director Tungko Saikol denied the accusations, saying they have reversion cases and cancellation before the Regional Trial Court and the Solicitor General’s office of all land titles under the Forest Land Greasing Leased Agreement that were fraudulently titled.