April 25th, 2012
Leyte Samar Daily Express
CABUCGAYAN, Biliran – Rice production and household income of farmers within the Cabucgayan Agrarian Reform Community (ARC) are expected to increase after the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) turned over on April 12 two major agricultural support projects to the local government unit and to the irrigators association for maintenance.
Turned over were the rehabilitated 2.2-kilometer farm-to-market road in Sitio Kasabangan, where some .5-kilometer was concreted for easy conveyance of farm products to the commercial districts; and the rehabilitated communal irrigation system (CIS) in Barangay Balaquid which is anticipated to continuously supply water to about 60 hectares of ricelands throughout the year.
On the same occasion, a level-2 potable water supply project was likewise launched to provide a safe drinking water to about 208 households here.
DAR Regional Director Eliasem Castillo disclosed that rehabilitation of the farm-to-market road was undertaken by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), while the irrigation system was rehabilitated by the National Irrigation Administration (NIA). The LGU will take charge in the development of the potable water supply.
Castillo added that these projects with a combined total amount of more than P10-million were jointly funded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and the Philippine government thru the third phase of the Agrarian Reform Infrastructure Support Project (ARISP-3) with 50 percent contribution from the LGU as the latter’s counterpart to help agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) here achieve the maximum production in their awarded lots under the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform program (CARP).
Aside from the 650 ARBs, provincial agrarian reform officer (PARO) Elisea Orapa said that more than 1,500 other residents in the area will likewise benefit from the road project.
Meanwhile, provincial agrarian reform support services officer (PARSSO) Ismael Aya-ay added that the road project is anticipated also to contribute greatly in the tourism industry to boom in this fifth class municipality.
Aya-ay explained that at the end of the road project is the town’s eco-tourism park with the “Kasabangan Falls” as its main attraction. A place many describe as a hidden paradise.
Biliran Representative Rogelio Espina on this same occasion announced several rural development projects he and Governor Gerardo Espina Jr are going to pour here very soon including the electrification leading to the Kasabangan Falls.
Further, ARISP national project manager Celerina Afable, who was impressed with the attitude of the farmers here towards their work announced that another irrigation project proposal for implementation under ARISP-3 in Barangays Magbangon, Libertad and Bunga in this town is now in progress.
With these rural development projects now keep on pouring on her town, Mayor Gemma Adobo was just too grateful for making her place a recipient of these rare opportunities. (JOSE ALSMITH L, SORIA)
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