Thursday, May 11, 2017

DA Launches Farm Assistance Program

Farm inputs being distributed during SAAD Launch

In fulfillment of his campaign promise of helping the farmers of Mindanao, President Rodrigo Duterte through the Department of Agriculture (DA) launched the Special Area for Agricultural Development (SAAD) program.

This was launched by Maguindanao Gov. Esmael Mangudadatu and Agriculture Assistant Secretary Lerey Panes jointly launched in Buluan, Maguindanao.

In acknowledging that agricultural productivity goes hand in hand with peace and order especially in conflict torn areas where the ordinary farmers bear the brunt of violence and aggression, SAAD is the answer. This program seeks to address poverty and underdevelopment in rural areas.

Included in the SAAD is the funding for socio-economic interventions worth Php150 million will be made available to farmers in Mindanao. According to Governor Mangudadatu, this was also a way of President Duterte to give thanks for the overwhelming support given by the people of Mindanao during the 2016 elections wherein Duterte swamped his rivals.

The SAAD launch was also attended by DA Region 12 Director Milagros Casis and DA officials from the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (ARMM). 

The event also included the turn-over of farm inputs and farmer beneficiaries from Maguindanao. 

“We are thankful to President Duterte and Agriculture Secretary Manny PiƱol for this good tiding,” Governor Mangudadatu said.

The SAAD program include technical support, educational interventions and socio-economic packages that will enable farmers to boost their production and crop yields.

Educational interventions include training in crop diversification so that farmers can supplement and increase their income by planting diverse crops aside from their traditional crops with proper environmental management practices.

The SAAD program is also being implemented in Apayao, Western Samar, Northern Samar, Eastern Samar, North Cotabato, Negros Oriental, Zamboanga del Norte, Lanao del Sur and Sarangani.

In ethnic Maranaw, “saad” means equitable distribution”.  

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