By Ellalyn De Vera-Ruiz
Audit reports on the P1.4-million sales proceeds of a portion of Hacienda Luisita have been submitted to the Supreme Court to determine if the sales were actually spent for legitimate purposes.
Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Undersecretary Luis Pangulayan, who is also the council secretary of the Presidential Agrarian Reform Council (PARC), said they are now awaiting the decision of the Supreme Court on the matter.
The P1.4-million proceeds on the sale of Hacienda Luisita Inc, (HLI) properties, specifically the 80-hectare Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway (SCTEX complex), are covered under the stock distribution option (SDO) revoked by PARC.
The Supreme Court ordered the special audit in its final and executory decision in 2012.
Pangulayan said Supreme Court earlier ordered DAR to engage the services of three reputable accounting firms approved by HLI and PARC to audit the books of HLI and Centenary Holdings, Inc. to determine if the P1.4 million sales proceeds were actually spent for legitimate corporate purposes.
Pangulayan said the Supreme Court ordered that any unspent or unused balance and any disallowed expenditures as determined by the audit will be distributed to the 6,296 farm worker beneficiaries of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program.
He said the three accounting firms have already submitted their audit reports to the Supreme Court.
Last week, DAR Secretary John Castriciones convened the first PARC executive committee meeting for 2018.
“The agenda deliberated in this executive committee meeting will be presented to the PARC meeting with President Duterte in Malacañang tentatively scheduled on March 27,” Castriciones said.
PARC is the highest policy- and decision-making body for agrarian reform matters and disputes, where the President presides as chair and the agrarian reform secretary as vice chair.