A barangay kagawad (village councilman) was accused of brokering a 62-hectare property owned by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) located in General Santos City, claiming it is part of his family’s ancestral domain.
Jonathan Jamir, president of the Arise Christian Homeowners Association said that Kagawad Lando Pascual was brokering the land in Barangay Tambler to various interested buyers.
Documents Jamir presented to The Manila Times showed that the property is adjacent to the 300 hectares owned by Rodeland Development Corp., a family corporation owned by Rodolfo Pascual, Lando’s father.
He said the younger Pascual noticed that for a long time there had been no developments in the BSP property so he considered it abandoned. Pascual encroached on the area and claimed it as part of their family’s ancestral land claim.
Pascual is a half-blooded B’laan (an indigenous group) and avers that he has the right to claim ancestral land domain under the Republic Act 8371, known as the Indigenous Peoples Right Act (IPRA) law.
“That is why Kagawad Pascual persevered and insists that he has the right to claim the BSP property,” Jamir said.
Jamir said the homeowners’ association would have no guarantee to own the portion of 62-hectare property they bought from Pascual because they learned of late that the area is being developed as socialized housing by some of the buyers legally titled under the BSP’s name.
The association also confirmed BSP ownership of the 62-hectare property when geodetic engineers made a survey over the land area which Kagawad Pascual was claiming.
Pascual, in an interview, said that the 62-hectare property is part of their ancestral land claim and they are the owner of the BSP property.
He admitted that he has brokered almost half of the 62-hectare property and sold it to interested buyers at P150,000 per 200 square meter. Other buyers acquired about 300 to 500 square meters and paid P350,000.
“It is true that I have brokered almost half of the 62-hectare property and there are about 2,000 family members of the homeowners association occupying my ancestral claim area. It is not true that the BSP is the owner of the property which I am selling,” he said.
Meanwhile, Jamir said he learned that the BSP head office already knew that their in Barangay Tambler is being claimed by Pascual and sold piece by piece to interested buyers now organized as the homeowners’ association.
“I am privy to the claim of the BSP as legitimate owner when they made a survey and showed their legitimate title to the 62-hectare property. I was with the BSP geodetic engineers when they conducted the actual survey of the land area together with geodetic engineer Noel Demotica, an employee of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources in Region 12,” Jamir said.
As this developed, Jamir said the BSP head office in Manila will be filing charges against Pascual in court.