April 9, 2011
IBA, Zambales, April 8 (PIA) — Senator Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan made rounds among students and farmers in a series of whole day consultations yesterday, finishing off a speaking engagement at the Ramon Magsaysay Technological University’s graduation rites and capping the day with the opening ceremony of the Mango Festival 2011.
In his message among the graduating students of RMTU, he spoke of “having a clear vision and working towards its realization.”
Together with Vice Governor Ramon Lacbain II, Pangilinan further emphasized this message by telling some 120 students from the different campuses of RMTU who were recipients of the Pangilinan-Lacbain Educational Assistance Program and telling them to “dream more, work more, and persevere more than the others.”
Afterwards, Senator Pangilinan, who is chair of the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Food, spent an informal consultation with the agricultural sector of the province to hear their issues, problems, and situations concerning production, especially that of the fishing sector.
Throughout his rounds, the Senator emphasized the role of the academe in the development of crops and marine culture.
He said that “the schools could provide the research and extension necessary to boost production.”
He further added that among the agriculture sector, there are still a lot of things to be researched and studied regarding production that would not merely ensure food security but also “to provide for the farmers.”
“Fish farming is the trend so if we want to be as developed as our neighbor countries, we must be progressive in devising and using modern faming especially in mariculture”, he said.
He emphasized focus on fishing saying “from being fish hunters, we should be able to be fish farmers.”
He then urged the farm groups to make their position papers for his office to find ways to address it and informed them that the department of Agriculture is already studying the possibility of subsidy for farmers and fishermen.
“It is encouraging,” according to him, “that with the meager budget of P38 billion, boosting production is possible especially if the private sector will be encouraged since in 2010 alone production yields amounted to P215 billion for fish,P117 billion for pork, and P140 billion for poultry on which the bulk of produce were from the private big business groups.”
“Kaya kailangan talagang sa tulong ng LGUs (local government units) ay masiguro na may sapat na suporta ang ating mangingisda at magsasaka.”(It is a must that with the help of LGUs, we can ensure support for our farmers and fishermen.)
He said that farming and fishing must be given top priority now that the Department of Agriculture has shaped up and already hurdled its “notorious” image.
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