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MAFAR-Maguindanao plans to make Datu Paglas as rice seed production capital

By: UNYPAD ComsTeam

DATU PAGLAS, MAGUINDANAO (March 25, 2021) — The Ministry of Agriculture Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (MAFAR) – Maguindanao Province plans to make Datu Paglas Municipality as rice seed production capital of the province in a bid to boost the farmers’ economy of the municipality and to lessen the dependency of the province from outside seed sources.

“Ang Datu Paglas municipality ay may malawak na pananiman ng palay at malakas ang tubig dito (Datu Paglas has wide rice production area with abundant supply of water),”Datu Paglas Mayor Hon. Datu Abubakar “Totoy” Pendatun Paglas, Alhadj, disclosed during the meeting held at the Municipal Session Hall last Wednesday.

The meeting was attended by the different high-ranking officials of the MAFAR headed by Dr. Ronjamin Maulana, the chief of MAFAR-Maguindanao Province.

Paglas said, “We need to re-organize the seed producers of Datu Paglas into federation so as to get all the products from them without any competition made during the bidding process. The Federation is like of the cooperative of all seed producers in Datu Paglas.

“Seed Inspector will be regularly deployed to the town to make sure of the quality of the produced seeds with the monitoring of the Municipal Local Government Unit,” he added.

“Isa a farmer a taga Datu Paglas a nakakwa sa dili bageto a uni na meg-complain siya sa LGU (One farmer of Datu Paglas received seeds that did not sprout). Nasisita e dili e niya kadsaluman ka makaya (That should not happen again, it’s a shame),” the mayor said as he urged the seed producers to produce quality seeds.

The MAFAR was forced to buy seeds from outside sources due to shortage this planting season. The province even got seeds as far as Manila to cater all the needs of the farmers.

“Let us strengthen the capacity of our local seed producers kasi hindi tayo nakakasigurado sa seeds na nakukuha natin sa labas (..because we are not sure of the seeds we acquired from outside)”, Dr. Ronjanmin said.

“Just imagine the 50,000 sacks of planting seeds we sourced out from BARMM because we could not give it to our own farmers,” Dr. Ronjamin added and he encouraged the LGU and seed producers to exert more efforts.

Joffel Pompong, the Municipal Agriculture Officer (MAO) of Datu Paglas was grateful for frequent visits of the MAFAR in his area and for plan expressed by Dr. Maulana to make Datu Paglas as seed capital of the region.
“We will do our best to make this plan a reality. As long as the MAFAR-Maguindanao Province and region are in our side, we are confident for it’s fulfilment,” Pompong said.

Hon. Municipal Councilor Armando S. Tocao, Chairman of the Committee on Agriculture in the Municipality, was thankful for the MAFAR for its plan for Datu Paglas town.

“Nasisita tano ged e kambegelan tano so mga bangangawid siya sa dalpa ka silan ba e timbang a ped-supply sa pegken tano langun (We need to strengthen the capacity of our farmers for they are the ones feeding our town),” he said.

Tocao thanked the leadership of Dr. Ronjamin for the initiative. “BARMM was able to see us now because of him,” the local legislator added.

Rudy S. Lumapinet, Committee Secretary on Environment and Natural Resources of the United Youth for Peace and Development, Inc. (UNYPAD) was also present during the meeting and volunteered to serve the office of MAO.

Meanwhile, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nation staff is also eyeing Datu Paglas for its project. The FAO UN project inception is scheduled this coming April 15, 2021.