Geared towards empowering and facilitating early recovery, food security and nutrition among the conflict-affected communities in the Bangsamoro Region, the MAFAR, MSSD, and MILG of BARMM, World Food Programme of the United Nations (UN-WFP), PLGU, and MLGU have converged for synergized and more meaningful delivery and distribution of varied assistance and services to the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) starting out with the municipalities of Datu Salibo and Shariff Saydona Mustapha, both in Maguindanao on January 16, 2020.

Strategically held at the Bangsamoro University of the Philippines, Incorporated (BUPI) in Magaslong, Datu Piang, the ceremonial turnover and distribution of farm inputs has benefited thousands of farmer-beneficiaries from the villages of Dasawao, Ganta, Inaladan in Shariff Saydona Mustapha, and the villages of Pandi and Pinditen in Datu Salibo.

These IDPs have received 644 bags of Open Pollinated Variety (OPV) corn seeds, 1,932 packs of assorted lowland vegetable seeds, and 45 sets of garden tools from the MAFAR for the techno demo farm and the actual application sites.

The off and on-farm productivity of the farmer-beneficiaries has also entitled them to receive conditional cash for work of Php2000 a month from the UN-WFP for a period of three months. They have already received the first two tranches, with a total of Php4000 per beneficiary, with their active participation and completion of the relevant training programs conducted and land preparation for the establishment of techno demonstration farms. The last tranche of cash for work shall be based on their respective productive activities either on corn production, vegetable production, pot making, fish processing and vending, construction of dikes, clearing of waterways, mat weaving, duck and chicken egg production, or cassava and green mungbean production.

The MSSD has carried out the proper selection, listing, organization, validation, and monitoring of the beneficiaries, which are all prerequisite and essential for the success of the program implementation.

The MILG, on the other hand, has endeavored to secure the peace and order all throughout the implementation of the program in coordination with the local government units and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).

The MLGU of Datu Salibo, led by Hon. Mayor Dr Solaiman Sandigan has been involved in the proper preparation and facilitation of the distribution program. Dr Minambai Salim, representing Maguindanao Hon. Governor Bai Mariam Mangudadatu, said the program is very timely with the problem on food insecurity and malnutrition; she announced that the PLGU shall be providing additional support all for the welfare of the IDPs.

Engr. Ismail A. Guiamel, MAFAR Convergence Program Focal Person, extended the message of Minister Mohammad S. Yacob stating the program was the result of unity, agreement and partnership among the implementing agencies and the latter’s advice for the beneficiaries to uphold moral governance by maximizing and sustaining the assistance they have received.

Meanwhile, Atty. Raissa H. Jajurie, Minister of MSSD, relayed their mission to understand the actual situation of the people in the grassroots to identify appropriate interventions and capacity enhancement strategies.

Dr Mishael Q. Argonza, Head of WFP Cotabato Sub Office, urged the beneficiaries to be effective partners in securing peace and stability among themselves to sustain their productivity and profitability.

Supporting the cause, Laurene Goblet, WFP Head of Programme in the Philippines, said they will be assisting the government in serving the communities better to help them attain food security and nutrition throughout their life cycle despite the different challenges, gaps, and limiting factors.

The distribution continues in Barangay Kabasalan, Pikit, North Cotabato and in Barangays Bungkaong, Lower Latih, and Buhanginan in Patikul, Sulu on January 22 and 29, 2020, respectively.

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