In view of the considerable damage to standing crops as a result of the recent typhoon and flood, and there being an urgent necessity to take immediate steps to insure the production of an adequate food supply for the needs of the country, and pursuant to the authority conferred upon me by Article III, section 14, of the Constitution, I, Jose P. Laurel, President of the Republic of the Philippines, do hereby promulgate this Ordinance:

SECTION 1. A nation-wide campaign for the cultivation of rice, corn, camote, cassava, gabi, cowpeas, soy bean, mongo and other short-time food crops suited to local conditions shall be started at once under the joint sponsorship of the Ministry of the Interior and the Ministry of Agriculture and Commerce.

SEC. 2. The Minister of Agriculture and t Commerce may, upon recommendation of the Director of Plant Industry:

(a) Order any agricultural land devoted now \ or hereafter to the planting of other crops to be planted to rice or corn, subject to the provisions of existing contracts; and

(b) Designate parts of such lands as may t have been planted to rice or corn for the planting of other crops.

SEC. 3. Subject to the control and supervision of the Minister of Agriculture and Commerce, all city and municipal mayors are hereby empowered to distribute uncultivated public lands within their respective jurisdictions among the citizens preferably to those who are unemployed in order to enable them to plant food crops therein for a period of one agricultural year: Provided, That, if in order to compensate those to whom vacant land may be given in accordance herewith for the initial expense of clearing the land or making certain improvements, it is necessary to extend the time beyond one agricultural year, extension of the contract for one additional agricultural year may be authorized in the discretion of the city or municipal mayor concerned.

SEC. 4. If for any reason the owner or the one in possession of any private agricultural 5 land is unable or refuses to cultivate the same, it shall be the duty of the mayor of the city or municipality where such land is located to turn it over to the citizens of such city or municipality, preferably to those who are unemployed, for the same purposes and under the same conditions prescribed in the next preceding section.

SEC. 5. It shall be the duty of every person or persons to whom public or private agricultural land has been turned over for cultivation to carry into effect the national food production campaign by planting thereon the crops contemplated in section 1 of this Ordinance: Provided, That they may not alter or damage any permanent improvements existing thereon: And provided, further, That kaingin may not be resorted to without permission from the Director of Forestry and Fishery or of his n representative in the locality. When a portion of public lands is found more suited for agricultural than for forest purposes kaingin shall be allowed.

SEC. 6. Crops obtained on public and private agricultural lands distributed in accordance with sections 3 and 4 of this Ordinance shall belong to the grower and no rent for the use of the land shall be collected: Provided, however, That a portion of the crops, or so much e thereof as may be necessary, not exceeding ten per centum, shall be set aside and the proceeds therefrom turned over to the Government as payment of the real estate tax corresponding to the year in which such crops are gathered or harvested.

SEC. 7. Within sixty days from and after the w promulgation of this Ordinance, the owners of to all vacant or idle urban lands, whether they be individuals, associations or corporations, shall plant or cause the said lands to be planted to food crops contemplated in section 1 hereof. For the purposes of this section, all urban lands not occupied by buildings, nor planted or used for industrial purposes shall be considered vacant or idle urban lands.

Immediately after the promulgation of this Ordinance, all owners of vacant or idle urban lands, whether individuals, associations or corporations, shall file with the city or municipal mayor or the presidents of district neighborhood associations, reports containing, among others, the following: the name of owner; present occupants; location of the lot; its area; its uses and the purposes for which it was previously utilized, if any, together with a plan of what the owner thereof intends to do therewith.

SEC. 8. It shall be the duty of all provincial governors, personally or through the provincial agronomists or other food production agents, to inspect the activities of the mayors and other persons concerned in this food production campaign. The governors and city mayors shall also submit a monthly report to the Minister of the Interior and the Minister of Agriculture and Commerce on the progress of the campaign in their respective provinces and cities.

SEC. 9. All seeds, seedlings, cuttings, shoots, or tubers received from the Government by provincial governors and city or municipal mayors in the furtherance of the national food production campaign shall be distributed immediately to the farmers for planting, and it shall be unlawful for said officials to utilize the same for their own benefit, or to intentionally permit or give tacit consent to the diversion of the same for consumption purposes.

SEC. 10. For the purpose of further effectuating the campaign for the cultivation of more food crops, the Minister of Agriculture and Commerce is hereby authorized, through the Bureau of Plant Industry, to establish, equip. operate and maintain state farms in such places as may be deemed appropriate therefor and beneficial to the country. Subject to the general executive supervision and control of the Minister of Agriculture and Commerce, the Director of Plant Industry shall have immediate direction and administration of such farms and shall, with the approval of said Minister, make and prescribe such rules and regulations as may be considered necessary to carry out the provisions hereof.

SEC. 11. In order to provide the necessary labor for the farms herein proposed to be established under this Ordinance, and to prevent or relieve unemployment, the Director of Plant Industry shall recruit from the census of the unemployed, as certified by the Director of Employment, such laborers as may be needed to work on those farms at such rates of wages as may be determined by the Minister of Agriculture and Commerce.

Any person found guilty of vagrancy under the provision of article 202 of the Revised Penal Code shall, during the present emergency, be punished, in lieu of the penalty provided by the Penal Code, by requiring him to render service in any of the farms established here under for a period of not less than one month but not more than six months: Provided That in the case of recidivism, the service shall be for a period of not less than six months hut not more than two years and six months.

SEC. 12. Any person who neglects or fails to perform any duty enjoined by this Ordinance or who performs any act which defeats or tends to defeat its purposes, or who otherwise violates any provision thereof, shall upon conviction be punished with imprisonment not exceeding six months, or by fine not exceeding two hundred pesos, or by both such fine and imprisonment, in the discretion of the court.

Violations of this Ordinance by the managers, representatives, directors, agents or employees of any natural or juridical person in the interest of the latter shall render said natural or juridical person amenable to the penalties corresponding to the offense, without prejudice to the imposition of the proper penalty, either personal or pecuniary, or both, upon the manager, representative, director, agent or employee: Provided, That principals or employers who are juridical persons shall only be amenable to the pecuniary penalty corresponding to the particular offense.

SEC. 13. Any provincial governor, or city or municipal mayor who shall infringe the provisions of this Ordinance shall, in addition to the criminal responsibility to which he may be subject, also be liable to suspension or removal from office.

SEC. 14. The Minister of Agriculture and Commerce is hereby empowered to issue such further rules and regulations as may be deemed necessary to carry into effect the purposes of this Ordinance.

SEC. 15. In order to give this Ordinance the widest publicity, the city mayor, municipal mayor, or presidents of district neighborhood associations shall cause the provisions hereof to be announced by bandillo, posters, or other means calculated to acquaint the people with the aims and purposes of this Ordinance. The said officials may, for this purpose, enjoin the cooperation of the neighborhood leaders in their respective localities.

SEC. 16. All laws, rules and orders, or parts thereof, inconsistent with the provisions of this Ordinance, are hereby repealed or modified, accordingly.

Done in the City of Manila, this 20th day of November, in the year of Our Lord, nineteen hundred and forty-three, and of the Republic of the Philippines, the first.

President of the Republic
of the Philippines

By the President:
Acting Executive Secretary

Source: Office of the Solicitor General Library