Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao—The province’s farmers queued here for the distribution of P35 million worth of mechanized farming equipment by the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao through its Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF-ARMM).
This was the last time the region’s agriculture agency extended aid to farmers in a forum at the DAF-ARMM Information and Area Resource Center (IARC).
Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel “Manny” Piñol said aiding the farmers through upgrading the country’s agriculture was the government’s way of rewarding the tillers for literally feeding the country.
Regional Agriculture Secretary Alexander Alonto Jr. and Assistant Regional Secretary Eugene Strong met the farmers and led the distribution together with Sittie Anida Tomawis Limbona, DAF director for administration.
Limbona said Piñol had earlier approved the release of rice farming machinery units worth P22 million and mechanized equipment for corn crop agriculture worth P13 million.
The agriculture assistance package consisted of 80 units of rice and corn farm machinery units given to 18 farmer and fishers cooperatives in different parts of the province.
Reina Regente Producers Cooperative, Nanungen Mauyag Agriculture Cooperative, Sitio Tumagantang Farmers’ Marketing Cooperative, Sitio Makaw Farmers and Fisher Folks’ Association, and Sitio Pidtulusan Agri-Farmers’ Marketing Cooperative received hand tractors with floating tiller.
Apo Luminog Farmers’ Association and Sunggilingan Marketing Cooperative gained Portable Rice Mills, and Montod Farmers’ Marketing Cooperative received an Electrical Corn Mill.
Reina Regente and Nanungen Mauyag also received mechanical corn shellers; Majadiah Farmers’ Association, Salindab Farmers’ Association, and Satan Taliawid Farmers’ Marketing Cooperative all received Potable Irrigator Open Source machines.
Edna Bajao, alternate focal person for regional rice program, said the machineries for rice farming also included threshers, transplanters, reapers, combine harvester, and MPDP.
Dr. Albert Usman said farmer cooperatives also received cassava graters, 1,600 liters of Insecticides; 1,600 kilograms of fungicide, and 550 sachets of rodenticides.
The assistance is designed to minimize manpower intervention in farming and mechanize the country’s agriculture.
Dr. Tong Pinguiaman, chief of operations of the DAF-ARMM’s Livestock program, said 116 heads of goats and 994 heads of free range chickens also formed part of the aid intervention to Maguindanao farmers in support of the Bangon Marawi Program.
Regional officials also had onsite visit of a model irrigation system inside the ARMMIRC complex to assess and evaluate the area.