Cabinet Secretary Leoncio Evasco received the rice gift from National Confederation of Irrigators Association (NCIA). Present during the turn-over were (From L-R) NIA Board Member for Private Sector Mr. Gregorio Sarmiento, NIA Administrator Gen. Ricardo R. Visaya, NCIA President Silvestre Bonto, and NIA Deputy Administrator for Administrative and Finance Gen. Romeo Gan.
Davao City - The National Irrigation Administration (NIA) gathered Irrigators Associations (IAs) nationwide for a policy engagement and Philippine Irrigation Knowledge learning with the theme “Rural transformation from Free Irrigation Service” held at Waterfront Insular Hotel, Lanang, Davao City on December 13-16.
The 2-day event highlighted policy updates on Free Irrigation Service as supported by both the Congress and the Senate. The 300 participants had their interactive learning exhibits and breakout sessions to share their knowledge about the processes related to innovation, including smallholder agriculture and family farming. An open discussion for the issues and opportunities was also conducted to address challenges and trends that affect irrigators associations.
The NIA Administrator said that the event was conceptualized and organized with the hopes of providing various policy platforms for consolidation of issues and concerns, interaction with partner stakeholders, and cooperation among the farmer-irrigators.
“I therefore encourage each and every one to join hands and exert your full support toward the success of this event as a subordinate for attaining the inclusive economic growth and development of Philippine agricultural sector”, said NIA Chief.
NCIA President Silvestre Bonto acknowledged the long term partnership of NIA and IAs in supporting the agricultural sector of the country and attaining a rice self-sufficient nation.
“NIA has been strengthening the IAs and works with them, not only pooling and generating resources for irrigation purposes, but also for our socio-economic development”, he added.
The PIKL-PE event was guided by the Philippine Development Plan (PDP) 2017-2022 to expand opportunities in Agriculture, Forestry, Fisheries, and ensure ecological integrity, clean and healthy environment.
It was also align with Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) which aims to end all forms of poverty and hunger, to promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, and to strengthen global partnership for sustainable development.
As a relative program of SDGs, a total of 175,275 kilograms of rice amounting to P8,763,750.00 was given by the Irrigators Associations to the Office of the President. The ceremonial hand over was accepted by Cabinet Secretary Leoncio Evasco who said that the rice cavans will go a long way especially to those families who are living on poverty line.