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High Court orders total distribution of Hacienda Luisita

In a unanimous vote of 14, the Philippine Supreme Court ordered the total distribution of the Hacienda Luisita to farmer-beneficiaries.

And in a vote of 8-6, the High Court fixed the valuation for just compensation to the 1989 value of the 4,915.75 land.

The eight justices are Chief Justice Renato Corona, Associate Justices Presbitero Velasco, Arturo Brion, Teresita Leonardo De Castro, Roberto Abad, Jose Perez. Jose Mendoza, and Martin Villarama.

The six justices who voted that the determination of valuation for just compensation be given to the Special Agrarian Court are Associate Justices Lucas Bersamin, Maria Lourdes Sereno, Diosdado Peralta, Mariano Del Castillo, Bienvenido Reyes and Estela Perlas-Bernabe.

The ruling affirmed the Nov. 22, 2011 decision, which ruled that just compensation due Hacienda Luisita, Inc. (HLI) should be based on the valuation of the land on Nov. 21, 1989, the day the Presidential Agrarian Reform Council (PARC) approved Luisita’s stock distribution option agreement (SDOA).

Hacienda Luisita Incorporated earlier appealed that the Court follow Justice Sereno’s opinion that the valuation of the land should be based on current fair market value, at the time HLI was issued a Notice of Coverage on Jan. 2, 2006.

If the valuation of the land would be based on the 2006 fair market value, HLI would have to be paid some PhP10 billion for the total 4,915.75 hectares up for distribution.