Bernie Cruz appointed new DAR secretary – manila bulletin
President Duterte has appointed Bernie Cruz to head the Land Reform Department (DAR).
Cruz, the DAR’s undersecretary for foreign aid and special projects office, replaced John Castrictiones, who resigned from his post for his aspiration to become a senator under the ruling PDP-Laban party.
The new secretary of the DAR has pledged to lead the agency to advance the campaigns.
âI believe that one of our projects that will boost agricultural productivity in the country is the Department’s Mega Farm. We will continue to seek approval from Congress to allocate funds to this project, âCruz said in a statement.
He said Mega Farm is a group of contiguous farms that are consolidated to form a large enough plantation capable of producing large volumes of agricultural products to meet the demands of institutional and commercial buyers. It is also open to various cash crops with high added value.
According to Cruz, Mega Farm will be beneficial for individual farmers who now own land to enter into trade and agribusiness agreements so that they can enter into supply contracts.
âWe hope to take them away from subsistence farming – or just planting and harvesting so that they have something to eat – towards trade and product exports,â he said.
Cruz also said that under his leadership, the agency would redouble its efforts to distribute any remaining undistributed land to landless farmers, provide support services to Land Reform Beneficiaries (ARBs), and bring social justice to communities. agrarian communities.
At present, the government still owns over 700,000 hectares of agricultural land, including private land which is mostly problematic land holdings and unused public land suitable for agriculture.
Once allocated to qualified ARBs, this land would allow the country to have a “sustainable agricultural sector that would help ensure food security,” said Cruz.
“I pledge to bring industrialization in the agricultural sector and through the provision of support services such as various livelihood opportunities, infrastructure projects, agricultural machinery and equipment, capacity building training, loan facilities, among other things, we can achieve a stable rural economy, “he added.
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