LABO, Camarines Norte, October 5, 2018 – The Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) lauded the local and national government for working together to implement projects that benefit their constituents in conflict-affected areas.
At the program awarding livelihood and infrastructure projects to beneficiaries in Camarines Norte yesterday, PAMANA National Program Management Office Sherwin Vizconde said this convergence accelerates development and improves lives in the province.“Dyan natin nakikita na kapag ang gobyerno nasyunal at gobyerno lokal ay nagkaisa, tagumpay at serbisyong para sa tao ang siguradong maibibigay,” he said.
(When the national and local government unite, there is success and services will surely be delivered).
Four 2017 PAMANA projects were distributed, namely: 1) Potable water system in Barangay Talobatib, 2) Agricultural Mechanization Project, 3) Large Cattle Disposal and, 4) Concreting of Mahawan-hawan Road will benefit thousands of residents and farmers in this municipality.
Vizconde added that these projects are aimed towards contributing to government’s goal of just and lasting peace in the country by means of developing interventions to isolated, hard to reach, conflict-affected and conflict-vulnerable communities.
“Ang objective ng PAMANA ay upang marating yung mga lugar na di nararating ng ibang national government agencies kagaya dito,” he said.
(PAMANA’s objective is to reach areas that have not been reached by other national government agencies).
From hardship to relief
Edita Bellen, President of Santol Irrigators Service Association Inc., said the rice combine harvester they received is a welcome relief to their 96-member group.
“Noon ang isang ektarya mo, aabutin ka ng dalawang linggo (sa pag-aani). Ngayon, kaya na ng isang araw,” she said.
(It used to take two weeks to harvest a one-hectare land in the past. Now we can do it in one day).
Bellen said the machinery will improve the quality and quantity of their rice harvest.
“Makakatipid ka na sa pag-ani, makaka-save ka pa ng masisirang palay lalo na kapag tag-ulan,” she said.
(Not only we can save up during harvest, we can also prevent rice from being damaged by heavy rains).
Hand tractor trailers, palay threshers, brushcutters, shallow tube wells, mechanical rice transplanters, and drilling rigs were also awarded to different farming associations.
For her part, Mahawan-hawan barangay chair Rebecca Canaria recalled the difficulty of the farmers due to the unpaved road that is muddy during rainy season.
“Ang mga produkto nila, kapag hirap ang tricycle, hindi agad-agad na nailalabas. Naiimbak po. Paano naman ang gulay, nabubulok na,” she said.
(Their produce were not immediately transported to markets because tricycles were having difficulty accessing the road. Vegetables got spoiled in storage).
“Mahigit sa kalahati ang ibinababa ng benta nila dahil di naibababa ang produkto. Kung minsan, wala nang kinikita dahil hindi naibababa,” she added.
(They were only earning half of the original price because of unreleased produce. Sometimes, they would not even earn anything).
Canaria said the concreting of their road solved this problem.
“Ngayon, kahit araw-araw nilang ilabas yo’n (produce), wala na pong problema, maibebenta nila sa tamang presyo,” she said.
(Now, farmers can transport their produce. The problem has been solved and they can sell at the right price).
Camarines Norte Governor Edgar Tallado said PAMANA projects enabled the poorest communities to feel government’s program to end poverty.
“Ito pong mga programa ng national government sa pamumuno ng OPAPP, malaking tulong sa malalayong barangay po natin. kasi alam nila, walang gobyerno. Sa pakikipagtulungan natin, na-realize nilang may gobyerno naman pala,” he said.
(These national government programs under OPAPP are a huge help to the farthest barangays. With our partnership, they now realize government is indeed there to help them). ###