Experts say farmers in favor of PBBM’s role as agri chief

President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. has shown himself capable of overcoming contemporary challenges in the agriculture sector, which begins with building the capabilities of farmers and fisherfolk, analysts said following his second State of the Nation Address (SONA). In an interview with the PNA on Wednesday, Dr. Frederick Rey, a political sociologist, said the President has put much importance on his direct leadership over the Department of Agriculture (DA). ‘If the DA fails, his administration also fails. It shows courage and decisiveness,’ Rey said. He said ‘farmers appear to be in favor of the President himself focusing on the concerns of the DA because they can easily convey their grievances such as the issue of fertilizer, smuggling, among others.’ Rey stressed the need to change the public’s mindset as ‘the government needs to capture the thinking of the people’ to put substance in its programs. Meanwhile, Dr. Froilan Calilung, a political analyst, said the President’s decisiveness as concurrent DA secretary was clearly demonstrated during the onion crisis and sugar importation issue. ‘I think the President would like to give us an idea concerning accountability. He is there to take the cudgels or to take the blame,’ he explained. Calilung stressed his efforts in food security are reflected in his desire to harness technology among farmers and fisherfolk. ‘You try to harness technology, digitalize farming, and capitalize modern resources, I think it can create efficient yield for our farmers. We really need to improve their capabilities and transfer skills and technology,’ Calilung said. ‘For you to lower the price, you will really need to use resources that will make the job faster,’ he added. Calilung, however noted that the public’s active participation will still play a big role in ensuring the success of the president’s agenda. Meanwhile, both Rey and Calilung were delighted that the ‘Uniteam’ campaign battle cry was helpful in the achievements of the administration. ‘I was delighted that the competing ideologies did not turn violent. I really appreciate that we maintain and protect the value of life,’ said Rey. ‘He wants to be a healing president; his approach is non-combative which I think is being appreciated by the people not only by those who are in the government but also by the opposition,’ Calilung noted

Source: Philippines News Agency