AN agrarian reform beneficiary organization (ARBO) in La Union has expressed its gratitude to the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) for coming to their rescue when the going got tough during the outbreak of the Novel Coronavirus 19.
Jose Laroya, chairperson of the Inabaan Norte Agricultural Multi-Purpose Cooperative (INAMPC), said the DAR turned things around for them when the agency started distributing quarantine passes, which have enabled them to sell their harvests even beyond their village.
“The strict health protocols had confined the marketing of our harvests within our barangay and neighboring villages, which often left our products rotting due to limited sales,” Laroya recalled.
DAR Secretary John R. Castriciones took it upon himself to make representation for the farmers before the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) to grant them some leeway in the marketing of their harvests.
“The idea was to make food available in the urban areas where hunger was prevailing due to the scarcity of food, and allow the farmers to save their crops from spoilage while turning them into cash,” Bro. John, as Castriciones is fondly called, said.
Laroya said his group quickly grabbed the opportunity, pooled their harvests together, and embarked on marketing them to various localities in La Union.
The biggest break, Laroya said, came when the DAR and other national government agencies launched the “Enhanced Partnership Against Hunger and Poverty (EPAHP),” where farmers’ organizations have been introduced to various government agencies and private institutions to serve as marketing outlets for their farm products.
For seven months the INAMPC grossed P330,768 from the sales of its products to the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) in La Union and to the Ilocos Training and Regional Medical Center, making it the fourth top grosser among farmers’ organizations nationwide.
“We owe it to the government, especially the DAR, for turning things around for us for the better,” Laroya said.
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73 DAR Calabarzon personnel sworn in to help intensify agrarian reform implementation
Lucena City, June 8, 2021 – “I have a marching order to all the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) regional directors to distribute all undistributed agricultural lands. And I challenge all the personnel, especially you who are newly appointed to help us in achieving this objective,” thus said DAR Secretary Brother John Castriciones to the 73 DAR newly-appointed employees who took their oath before him.
Brother John earlier signed their appointment papers on June 3, 2021, as he assured the other DAR personnel that he would go around the country to supervise the appointment and evaluation of all applicants.
“You were given new positions to help us in implementing our mandate. We will intensify our services to boost the lives of the agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs),” he said.
Castriciones advised them that they should do their best because that is the real essence of success. We succeed in life when we truly serve the public and the people.
Support Services Office Undersecretary Emily Padilla said that they should always be accountable to their tasks and must put the farmers first in order to deliver social justice.
“I am very happy that our personnel who deserve to be promoted are finally recognized. Some of them are serving the government for years and it is only now that they are given the opportunity to climb up. Thanks to Brother John and Calabarzon Regional Director Rene Colocar for seeing your potentials,” said Policy, Planning and Research Office Undersecretary Virginia Orogo.
DAR Regional Director Rene Colocar pointed out that the personnel are selected after passing the qualifications set by the governing law.
“We made sure that the newly-appointed personnel will help the DAR in bringing social justice to our ARBs” he said.
Also present during the oath-taking ceremony were Finance, Management, and Administrative Office Undersecretary Lucius Jun Jun Malsi, Special Concerns Office Undersecretary Carim Panumpang and other top officials of the department.
Castriciones signs 73 appointments of DAR Calabarzon personnel
Seventy-three (73) personnel from the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) in the CALABARZON region will be facing a new kind of life as DAR Secretary Brother John Castriciones signed last Thursday their appointments for promotion in Lucena City.
Castriciones said that he will go around the country to supervise the appointment and evaluation of all DAR applicants to their new positions and responsibilities.
“When people get promoted and occupy permanent positions, it will create vacancies, where people holding lower positions will have an opportunity to apply and seek higher positions,” he said.
Castriciones assured that he will not leave the DAR unless he has signed the appointments of those people who should be promoted.
“Do your best, so that we will be able to deliver the DAR’s mandate to provide lands, support services, and social justice to the agrarian reform beneficiaries,” he said.
DAR-Calabarzon regional director Rene E. Colocar said the personnel whose appointments were signed were very fortunate to be part of the DAR after passing through the qualification standards set by the governing law.
“After the thorough screening, deliberation, and promotion next is the responsibility which the person must perform to achieve the social justice agenda of the government,” he said.
On Tuesday, June 8, 2021, the 73 DAR Calabarzon newly promoted and appointed personnel of the agency will take their oath in front of the DAR Secretary to be held in Lucena City.
Also present to witness the signing of appointments were DAR Director for Administrative Service Cupido Gerry D. Asuncion and his human resource staff from the Personnel Division.