GMA rice program for Samar offers free 5,762 bags of certified seeds
By Ninfa B Quirante
Catbalogan City (November 26) -- Gintong Masaganang Ani (GMA) Rice Program is now offering a 100% subsidy to rice farmers as it begins distributing close to 6 thousand bags of certified palay seeds in Samar.
In a conference with agriculturists all over Samar, yesterday at the Cocina de Cabral in Catbalogan City, the list of the number of seeds allotted to each municipality was read by Fernando Saludar GMA-Rice Provincial Coordinator.
Presently however, only 1,333 bags are available because the agriculture department has to 'import' rice seeds from Bohol and Nueva Ecija.
But farmers are assured that the remaining number of rice seeds needed would be available before the planting season.
Rice farmers in Samar are now busy with land preparation.
Saludar told PIA that the 100% subsidy is offered only now, in the past it was only 50%.
This is attributed to PGMA's commitment to attain rice sufficiency by 2013, the agriculturist noted.
In October, FIELDS caravan reached Samar and gathered more than a thousand rice farmers to partake of the good news where the agriculture department outlined its priority programs for agriculture.
Samar then was reeling because of the unavailability of a provincial agriculturist and the indifference of Samar provincial government to agricultural concerns.
Today, with the appointment of acting Governor Jesus Redaja and acting agriculturist Lina Saises, farmers are now assured of a formidable structure that would support the rice farmers.
In addition, DA Regional Field Office 08 has assured assistance and continuous support of incentives to agriculture employees.
Acting Governor Redaja committed to deliver the promised bags of rice to farmers free of charge.
Aileen Macauba, Municipal Agriculturist of Marabut said she is glad that the province is fast tracking the programs in agriculture.
Ruth Dasal of Catbalogan City also echoed the sentiment. Most attendees lauded the 100% attention the agricultural sector is enjoying at the moment.
The last meeting, they had, an attendee disclosed was in 2003 yet. (PIA-Samar) [top]