Ilocos DENR Facilitating Land Grabbing In La Union?

SAN FERNANDO CITY, La Union – Investors in the tourism industry in the province are asking for a congressional inquiry on reports that the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) regional office here is helping professional landgrabbers in acquiring titled prime beach properties in Bauang town.
One of the resort owners who requested anonymity told media persons that Ilocos DENR officials headed by Director Paquito Moreno allegedly initiated the filing of cases in court to cancel land titles and have them reverted to public domain status, thus making it easy for the landgrabbers to acquire the  properties.
“While the case is on-going, the favored person occupies the land in question by force under the very noses of the DENR but nothing is done by the agency despite complaints by the landowners,” the complainant claimed.
DENR also schedules an ocular inspection of the property including submission of affidavits in the form of question-and-answer and the right of appeal.
A survey must be conducted where all parties are represented complete with measurements, photos, video recordings which should form part of the records of the investigation.
It was learned that no actual and real survey was made on the the questioned property by DENR and this was attested by a separate survey conducted by a private geodetic engineer which showed that the property was not “underwater.”
The land is as dry as the Sahara Desert, so to speak, and three mansions have been built on the lots by two foreigners married to Filipino women and Filipino businesswoman, according to a Bauang resident.
Bauang is the beach capital of the province. Some of the famous resorts here include Long Beach and Nalinac Beach. Jun Elias/