The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) 7 has issued a total of 1,295 free patents totaling 409,698 square meters or 40.97 hectares of untitled public alienable and disposable lands which have been zoned as residential.
Under Republic Act 10023, or the New Free Patent Act, the DENR 7 will process a free patent title application to any Filipino citizen who is an actual applicant of a residential land.
DENR 7 Regional Executive Director Dr. Isabelo R. Montejo said actual occupation, actual residence and continuous possession and occupation of the parcel subject of the application, either by herself or himself or through her or his predecessor-in-interest, under a bona fide claim of acquisition of ownership, for at least ten years prior is required in filing an application.
Residential lands are lands that have been identified and zoned as residential through the appropriate ordinance by a local government unit (LGU) having jurisdiction over the area.
Of the total, Cebu province received 274 free patents or 49,995 square meters; Bohol with 571 or 182, 829 square meters; Negros Oriental with 444 or 175,202 square meters; and Siquijor with six or 1,295 square meters.
A free patent on residential land covers untitled residential lands in public alienable and disposable lands that are zoned by local government units as residential areas, including townsites, public schools, municipal halls, public plazas or parks, delisted and abandoned military camps or reservations.
Any Filipino citizen who is an actual occupant of a residential land for at least ten years may apply for a free patent title.
"This law directs our Community Environment and Natural Resources Offices (CENRO) to process the application within 120 days to include compliance with the required notices and other legal requirements," Montejo said.
He added that within 125 days the free patent will be issued or returned as the Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Offices (PENRO) has five days to approve or disapprove the patent.
DENR 7 CELEBRATES ICC DAY
In line with the celebration of the International Clean-up (ICC) day this year, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) 7 led a one day simultaneous coastal clean-up activity on different shorelines and riverbanks across region 7.
Last Saturday, September 20, more than 15, 000 volunteers from all DENR 7 offices along with 29 local government units, 20 government agencies, 6 universities, non-government agencies and other stakeholders gathered in all coastal areas to collect marine trash and debris as the Philippines joined the rest of the world in celebrating the International Coastal Clean-up (ICC) Day.
An estimated of 75 tons of trash were collected in the simultaneous clean-up showing most trash collected were plastics, diapers, napkins, cigarettes, plastic bottles and caps, grocery bags, trash clothes and candy wrappers.
According to DENR 7 Regional Executive Director Dr. Isabelo R. Montejo, ICC is a global event observed by almost all countries every year since 1986. Its aim is to engage all citizens to remove trash and debris from all beaches and waterways and promote awareness on marine and coastal environment protection.
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