Three days before his term ends as the Secretary of Department of Agriculture, Sec. William Dar spent his week-end in Ilocos Region as he led various activities and project visit on June 25-27, 2022.

Bidding farewell to the farmers and fisherfolks at the Candon City Civic Center, Candon City, Ilocos Sur, Sec. Dar led the release of fuel subsidy and the distribution of rice farmer’s financial assistance and other DA interventions together with DA’s Assistant Secretary for Strategic Communications, Noel Reyes.

In his message during the event, Sec. Dar said that he shall be leaving three legacies that laid down a solid foundation in growing and developing the Philippine agriculture.

First legacy he mentioned is that Filipinos no longer lined up for palay grains during his term as the Secretary despite the worldwide pandemic that greatly affected the economy.

“Walang nangyaring pilahan sa bigas. Masayang-masaya kami dahil bagamat may pandemya, walang pilahan sa bigas,” Sec. Dar said.
Sec. Dar also took pride that during his 2-year and 10 months term as the Secretary of DA, the agency recorded the highest harvest in palay so far with 19.96 million metric tons.

Another notable accomplishment of the Secretary is the crafting of the 10-year national agri and fisheries modernization and industrialization plan up to 2032 which provides a solid foundation to develop and improve the farming and fishing sectors in the country going beyond up to the coming administration.

With the strategic plan that the DA has laid down under his watch, Sec. Dar expressed high hopes that farmers and fishers in the country especially the various members of the cooperatives and farmers’ groups and associations shall achieve progress and prosperity with the four pillars and 18 key strategies drawn to achieve the OneDA reform agenda.

Meanwhile, as his way of expressing his benevolence to the farmers and fishers in Ilocos Sur, he led the distribution and awarding of various projects amounting to Php223.30 million given to various farmers and fisherfolk associations in the province.

Under the Rice Farmers Financial Assistance Program, a total of 700 farmers benefitted from the project amounting to Php3.5 million while the fuel subsidy program for 25 corn farmers and 25 fisherfolks amounts to Php150,000.

From among the 6 major Banner programs of DA in the region, the Livestock Program shared the biggest chunk of projects given to the recipients with the distribution of P24.8 million sentineling project, Php22 million for the Suyo Multipurpose Cooperative, P49.5 million for Sacred Heart Savings Cooperative and P115.5 million for the Nueva Segovia Consortium of Cooperatives which are under the Integrated National Swine Production Initiatives for recovery and expansion thru the implementation of community based swine production through clustering and consolidation.

Under the rice, corn, hvcdp and organic programs, various farm machineries and equipment were also given to various recipients amounting to Php 7.8 million.

Aside from the distribution and awarding of projects, Sec. Dar also led the visit at the Don Mariano Marcos Memorial State University’s Pig Extension and Research Farm at Baroro, Bacnotan, La Union on June 25, 2022 and inked a Memorandum of Agreement with the Pangasinan State University for the establishment of a campus radio station to further develop and institutionalize the communication and dissemination efforts of the DA and the PSU with regard to the research breakthroughs and agri-fishery technologies of the university.

Concluding his three-day visit, Sec. Dar also also administered the oath taking of the newly elected officials of the municipalities of Burgos and San Emilio, Ilocos Sur led by Mayors Nathaniel Escobar and Joey Warren Bragado.

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