Tillers, workers to troop House hearings on land reform, wage hike

FARMERS and workers groups are all set to swamp tomorrow’s deliberations of the House of Representatives in support of two vital legislations, the Genuine Agrarian Reform Bill (GARB) and the P125 Wage Hike Bill, which will concretely benefit the people.

The House committees on agrarian reform and labor and employment will separately conduct hearings tomorrow on House Bill 374 or the Genuine Agrarian Reform Bill (GARB) and House Bill 375 or the P125 across the board wage hike bill.

“Farmers and workers have long been waiting for the House’s action on the twin measures and are very eager to show their strong support to the bills,” says Anakpawis party-list Representative Rafael Mariano.

Aside from Mariano, the principal authors of the twin measures are Bayan Muna Reps. Teddy Casino and Neri Colmenares, Gabriela Women’s Party Reps. Luz Ilagan and Emmie de Jesus, Kabataan Rep. Raymond Palatino, and ACT Teachers Partylist Rep. Antonio Tinio.

Mariano said they are “expecting a face-off with big landowners, big businesses, and bureaucrats who will object measures but the farmers and workers are prepared to debunk all their oppositions.”

“In light of the worsening economic crisis and extreme poverty suffered by the people, farmers and workers have all the reasons to demand for genuine land reform and wage increases,” Mariano stressed.

He said “the GARB, which seeks the free distribution of lands to landless tillers, aims to defend farmers facing threats of eviction through various forms and schemes of land-grabbing, boost production and pave the way for national economic development.”
“On the other hand, a P125 wage hike is long overdue. It is high-time for the Aquino administration to prioritize wage increase instead of giving profit guarantees to big businesses,” the Anakpawis lawmaker said.

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