In support to the government’s efforts in peace building and development, the Department of Agriculture XI (DA-XI) thru its Payapa at Masaganang Pamayanan (PAMANA) program has recently turned over P1 million worth of agri infra in Brgy. Binondo, Baganga, Davao Oriental.
The members of the Nagkauyong Mandaya sang Tigbawan, Inc. (NMSTI) that were affected by typhoon Pablo in 2012 will benefit the package of support that includes a Multi-Purpose Drying Pavement (MPDP), a warehouse and bags of upland rice and corn seeds.
“Residents here were coconut farmers but after the typhoon Pablo, we ventured into upland rice and corn production but the lack of production support hinders us to earn more,” said 73- year old Angelita Maca.
Adding that insurgency was also a problem back then since government’s support couldn’t easily reach their place but not until the 67 Infantry Battalion (IB) in Baganga established livelihood projects as part of the security sector of the PAMANA livelihood program.
“About 80 percent of the population belongs to the agriculture sector and some of them are in conflict- affected and vulnerable areas. In protecting and helping them to produce their own food, insurgency was minimized,” said Lt. C Jacob Thaddeus Obligado of the 67 IB.
DA XI- PAMANA focal Jennifer Tangonan said that aside from the 67 IB, the project is also in collaboration with the Office of the Presidential Adviser for Peace Process (OPAPP) and Local Government Unit of Baganga.
“DA XI’s support will not stop here. We will visit the place from time to time to check if these projects really served its purpose,” said Tangonan, adding that coordination with the LGU will continue to identify and address the challenges in the agriculture sector of Baganga.
The NMSTI thru its president Rommel Magno expressed their heartfelt gratitude to the agencies who helped them rebuild their lives after the typhoon Pablo hit the place.
“Gone are the days when we use our sleeping mats to dry our harvested corn seeds. We will take care of these projects to show our commitment to more agricultural development in Baganga, “said Magno adding that the Mandaya tribe will never forget any act of kindness showed to them. (Celso C. Vergara, DA11)