For the fourth time this year, the MAFAR spearheaded the rice harvest festival for the Community-Based Model Farm on Hybrid and Inbred Seed Production in Barangay Talisawa, Datu Abdullah Sangki, Maguindanao on August 19, 2020.

The activity showcased the yield performances of hybrid rice variety NSIC Rc204H (Mestizo 20) that was planted in 150-hectare wide clustered areas in the farmers’ village and inbred rice variety NSIC Rc222 planted in 33 hectares for quality seed production.

According to Tong A. Abas, MAFAR Regional Rice and Seed Focal Person, these rice varieties are both proven high yielding as per results of varietal trials and demonstration farms.

Dr Ronjamin M. Maulana, MAFAR-Maguindanao Operations Officer, said the rice production this wet cropping season in the entire Maguindanao across ecosystems (irrigated, rainfed, and upland), including the more than 2000-hectares in the town, is more than enough to feed the 1.2Million population of the province while that of the next cropping season will serve as surplus.

Minister Dr Mohammad S. Yacob, in his interview with the media partners, said the activity is one way of celebrating the success of the farmers, whom he considers partners of the ministry in the attainment of agricultural development and sustainability in the Bangsamoro Region.

He also emphasized the importance of strong collaboration with the Local Government Unit (LGU) as it will further ensure the progress and continuity of the programs and projects implemented for the farmers in every municipality or province. “The partnership is a manifestation of unity for one common cause of effecting positive change in the lives of the people in the communities; we cannot address the many challenges in the sectors without the help of the LGUs”, added the MAFAR Chief.

Showing his full support, Hon. Municipal Mayor Datu Pax Ali S. Mangudadatu, participated in the activity. He recalled in his message that it was just few months since the conduct of the planting festival in the same area, that he had also attended, and they gathered again that time for the harvest festival.

The chief executive recounted the many projects his administration has accomplished in his short incumbency including the two halal public markets that were built to cater the products of the farmers.

“With these accomplishments in place coupled with our unity and collaboration, it is very possible that our little town shall become the gateway of Bangsamoro development”, stressed Mayor Mangudadatu.

Farmer Richard Mirayo was surprised when called to receive the Php100,000 cash from the LGU in payment for his rice harvest from his one-hectare farm where the crop cutting was done and led by Minister Yacob and Mayor Mangudadatu.

Two units of water pump equipment were also turned over by Mayor Mangudadatu and Minister Yacob to the irrigators’ associations in the village to aid the farmer-members in increasing their productivity.

Raffles were also done by the team from the MAFAR which added to the excitement and motivation of the farmers. The prizes were t-shirts and pens sponsored by the private company ‘Lead Agri’ with additional cash rewards courtesy of the LGU.

The activity was also participated by Engr. Ismail A. Guiamel, Assistant to the Minister for Operations, Sonora A. Dagadas, former MAFAR Municipal Officer (MMO), Benjamin Batabol, Current MMO, Cesar V. Galvan, UN-FAO Cotabato Head, members of the Sangguniang Bayan and the BARMMIARC research associates.

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