Mining firm ‘bulldozes’ crops in Compostela Valley

Jan. 15, 2016

DAVAO CITY – On the dawn of January 15, farmlands of the family Villavicencio and the Sitio Nursery of Barangay Ngan in Compostela were reported to have been bulldozed by the controversial mining company operating in the area.

In a statement, the Compostela Farmers Association (CFA), who condemned the incident, said that “up to 70 meters were cleared which damaged crops including balanghoy (cassava), banana, and rubber plants.”

According to the group, there has been a “negotiation” yesterday with the local government unit of Ngan, Compostela Valley and the CFA, to stop the operations of the Agusan Petroleum and Mines, Corporation with the help of the provincial government of Compsotela Valley. The farmers said the company’s operation will affect their farms and livelihood.

“It has been a long time since we are defending the entry of AgPet because it will ruin our livelihood,” said Jimmy Saypan, secretary general of CFA.

Saypan said that the incident is just part of the company’s way of grabbing their lands.

Meanwhile, Jella Villavicencio, owner of the bulldozed land, said “yesterday, we talked in the barangay that would not allow it.”

“What they have done is a clear case of land-grabbing,” she said.

Villavicencio added that, “it is sad to see that the government is being used to grab the lands of the farmers.”

The group said that the bulldozer used is a government equipment with printed sign “Province of Compostela Valley” in it.

However, the bulldozing has been stopped by the people of Ngan, members of CFA and the land owners themselves by blocking the paving operations.

The group, together with the land owners, are currently in negotiations with the barangay development council of Barangay Ngan, Compostela, Compostela Valley. (

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