NSCs and AFCs chairpersons and members flash their smiles for a photo-op with outgoing Secretary Proceso Alcala together with PCAF Exec. Director Ariel Cayanan.

In the joint meeting of the National Sectoral Committees (NSCs) officers and Regional Agricultural Fishery Councils (RAFCs) chairpersons on June 06, 2016, Department of Agriculture (DA) Secretary Proceso Alcala was given a commendation for his invaluable support and recognition for participatory governance in the DA development processes at the Apacible Hall, DA Compound, in Quezon City.

More than 50 NSC members, RAFC chairpersons and PCAF employees gathered to acknowledge Sec. Alcala’s outstanding support to the initiatives and policy recommendations of PCAF’s consultative bodies in six years.

Atty. Christian Monsod, NSC on Climate Change chairperson, who led the meeting with PCAF Executive Director Ariel Cayanan, gave every member and chairperson the opportunity to speak and give their notable experiences with the secretary’s leadership.

“We are very happy with the ‘Proceso’ and with the results because you have been very supportive of these councils,” Atty. Monsod said.

Through the approval of Farm Mechanization during Sec. Alcala’s term, it became easier in Isabela, Cagayan Valley in harvesting their crops according to the Region 2 AFC chairperson, Isidro Acosta, Sr. PCAF’s partners also commended Sec. Alcala who fought for a higher Department of Agriculture budget during his term.

Yun pong budget na ibinigay ni Pangulong Noynoy for the past 6 years, (kapag) ikinumpara po namin sa budget ng buong kagawaran buhat (noong) 1975 hanggang 2010, lamang pa po ang (ibinigay) ni PNoy na budget (nang halos) 45 bilyong piso,” Sec. Alcala said.

According to a report by Pia Ronda of Rappler, the budget of Agriculture Department during the Aquino administration was approximately PhP67.8 billion a year, a total of PhP339 billion from 2011 to 2015. This is PhP28.1 billion higher compared to the 2009 DA budget of the Arroyo administration according to ABS-CBN News Online.

Sec. Alcala also praised PCAF for its significant contribution and efforts to meet the needs of the Filipino farmers and fisherfolks.

“Ang pinakamalaking ambag po ng PCAF sa Department of Agriculture ay hindi lamang po (pagiging) watchdog, ‘kundi talagang totoong nagbibigay (ng) guidelines and guidance sa mga programang kailangan para itaas ang antas ng pangangailangan ng bawat komunidad.” Secretary added.

Sec. Alcala, whose term ended on June 30, 2016, further thanked the NSCs and AFCs for their support and cooperation during his six-year term and wished the next administration to have a genuine love with farmers and fisherfolks.