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PIA Press Release

ARMM on alert as damage to crops and livestock seen to rise due to dry spell

Koronadal City (4 March) -- Thousands of hectares rice and cornlands in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) have been severely affected by the onslaught of the dry spell.

ARMM Executive Secretary Naguid Sinarimbo said, although there are still no figures on the extent of the damage on agriclutral crops as a result of El Niņo, just like many regions in the country, several areas in the autonomous region begin to feel the effects of the dry spell on rice, corn and livestock production..

Sinarimbo said, since the autonomous region is basically an agriclutre-based area, they expect several areas would be affected by the El Niņo.

"Sa tingin natin, tatamaan din ng husto ang autonomous regional government dahil essentially agriculture-based tayo, at pag kulang ang tubig konting crops ang pwedeng itanim and we are aware of that," Sinarimbo said.

The officiazl said, the regional leadership is serious about crafting an intervention to cushion the effects of EL Niņo on the lives of the people.

ARMM Acting Regional Governor Ansarrudin Adiong has directed the Departments of Agriculture (DA) and Health (DOH) to immediately conduct a rapid assessment on the effects of El Niņo, Sinarimbo said.

The regional governor, he said, is also vigorously coordinating with the Department of Agriclture Central Office in Manila for possible immediate assistance to the agriculture sector.

As this developed, the regional government is prepared to extend necessary assistance to affected farmers in the autonomous region, he said.

According to Sinarimbo, as soon as the assessment report is submitted, the regional government will direct the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) to come up with an action plan on El Niņo.

In so far as health issues are concerned, DOH-ARMM has been very, very active in addressing the problems and needs of the people particularly the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), Sinarimbo added. (pbc/PIA) [top]

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