By Baretang Bikolnon Staff
Ombudsman charges Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Region IX Director Felix Aguhob with a fine equivalent to his one month salary for failing to reply letters from a tenant farmer in Tumaga, Zamboanga City.
Aguhob did not deny that he received tenant farmer Ofelia Delgado’s February 2016 letter, however, he acted on the request only when the matter was referred to him by the Office of the DAR Secretary according to the press statement of the Ombudsman.
Delgado’s complaint stated that she wrote a letter to Aguhob on 24 November 2015 inquiring about the retention right of the landowner over a parcel of land subject of agrarian reform.
Two follow-up letters were made on 4 February 2016 and 28 July 2016, however, Aguhob replied only on 15 August 2016.
“There should be no question that respondent disregarded R.A. No. 6713 and its implementing rules,” Ombudsman said.
However, Aguhob violated Section 5(a) of RA No. 6713 which states that it is the duty of public officials to act promptly on letters and requests within 15 working days from receipt thereof, respond to letters, telegrams or other means of communications sent by the public.
“The reply must contain the action taken on the request,” Ombudsman said.
The Ombudsman directed the DAR Secretary to immediately implement the decision which is considered as final, executory and unappealable with a warning that that “the refusal or failure to comply without just cause, of the officer directed to implement this Decision shall be a ground for disciplinary action against said officer.”
Meanwhile, Zamboanga City Agriculturist Office last week proceeded to the east coast to distribute relief goods to flood-stricken farmers as part of the assistance provided residents calamity victims.
The relief goods form part of the total 1,500 food packs donated by the Filipino Chinese Chamber of Commerce to the City Government. Additional food packs will be provided to cover all farmers affected by last week’s heavy rains and flash floods.
Areas covered in the distribution in the east coast Thursday included Licomo, Tictapul, Vitali and Mangusu. (BaretangBikolnon.com)