PAMPANGA

Pangan: Reviving interest in agriculture

At Close Range

THE country was a predominantly agriculture-based land some decades ago and until today when we need to revive interest on farming and agriculture.

Our country is definitely suited to planting crops on which we mainly depend for food and nutrition.

The idea of putting up a program to encourage more young. Filipinos to engage in farming and help attain the goal of food security in the country is laudable.

It is not the Department of Agriculture but the Department of Agrarian Reform which is the main proponent of the program to give three hectares of land for each fresh graduate of agricultural courses which can serve as their farm laboratories where they can apply the theories and practices they learned in schools.

It is not debatable that agriculture has back-stopped our transition to an economy-based on services and manufacturing. The main industries where we focus our resources today are: electronic assembly, aerospace, business process outsourcing, food manufacturing, shipbuilding, chemicals, textiles, garments, metals, petroleum, refining, fishing, steel and to a minimum, rice.

During the time of President Ramon Magsaysay, we have been exporters of rice to other Asian countries and we even taught their scientists the rudiments of rice production.

Nowadays, sorry to say, we are big importers of rice, from Thailand and Vietnam. What happened, George? Our farmers remain poor and dependent on loan sharks. That's why, more than ever, they urgently need government support to tide them over.

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On another matter, Manila Mayor Francisco "Isko Moreno" Domagoso is one local chief executive who put the concerns of his constituents first on his priority list.

Lately, he announced that no one among Manilans would endure empty stomachs on Christmas as he found the means to provide every Manilan the food for his table and family. He is also alert and focused in the acquisition of the anti-Covid-19 vaccine.

If all the local chief executives will adopt the Yorme's style of governance, everybody will be happy and fulfilled every day of the year!

That's why I dare say to all local chief executives and even to our national leaders: please emulate the good deeds of Mayor Isko Moreno and live up to the expectations of your respective constituents.

It is not hard to do this. Just have the heart and determination and above all, be honest to them.


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