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The MinDA family mourns the demise of Director Reyzaldy B. Tan.

“RBT” as he is fondly called in MinDA, served as the agency’s Director for Planning, Policy, and Project Development Office. He took the lead in crafting strategic plans and policy advocacies to make sure Mindanao gets its fair share of development. He was a leader and a mentor, who always turned even the most abstract ideas into tangible and workable outputs.

Prior to joining MinDA, he already had a long career in public service and development sector, particularly in pursuing peace and development efforts in then Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), which later became Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).

He served as Component Manager for the Capacity Building and Empowerment through Peace and Development Communities (PDCs) in the Government of the Philippines-United Nations Multi-Donor Programme (GoP-UN-MDP). He later broadened his work in his engagement with UNDP-managed programs including serving as Deputy Programme Manager for the ACT for Peace Programme of UNDP and Mindanao Economic Development Council (MEDCo).

RBT will live on in our relentless pursuit for a peaceful, progressive, and united Mindanao – a vision that has always inspired his years of dedicated service.

Director Rey is survived by his wife and two sons.

March 8, 1968 – October 20, 2020

 

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by Secretary Emmanuel F. Piñol

Chairman, Mindanao Development Authority

The corn-producing town of Baungon, Bukidnon will soon serve as a model for other agricultural communities in Mindanao, even in the Philippines, on how to use its own resources in protecting its farmers.

On Thursday, leaders of the town, led by its mayor, vice mayor, councilors, farmer leaders and representatives of civil society organizations all agreed to establish its Municipal Corn Industry Development Program.

The Baungon Corn Industry Development Program will provide support and protection to the town's corn farmers who for ages have suffered from very high cost of seeds, farm inputs and agricultural machinery services and exploitation by traders who manipulate buying prices at peak harvest.

The program includes the acquisition of tractors, corn planters, harvesters, seeds and fertilizer loaning and a Corn Grains Silo Complex where farmers could deposit their produce at peak harvest to wait for a better price.

This concept actually was designed by the Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) as part of its Mindanao Corn Industry Development Program which is presented to the European Union-funded Mindanao Rise Program.

At least four pilot areas have been identified for this program, including one in Bukidnon Province, but Baungon was not identified earlier.

When I visited Baungon earlier this month, 27-year-old Mayor Giovanni Dahino presented to the MinDA team the problem of the corn farmers of very low prices.

Baungon is a major corn producing town of Bukidnon with an estimated harvest area of 7,000 hectares and an annual production of at least 45,000 metric tons.

Emphasizing that national government intervention on this problem could be very slow, MinDA presented the Mindanao Corn Grains Silo Storage Concept which the town could establish as an Economic Enterprise.

MinCOGSS involves the establishment of a grains storage facility to be owned by the Local Government Unit of Baungon and operated by its Economic Enterprise Office.

The program aims to stabilize the supply and price of corn to boost the region's livestock and poultry industry.

Under the program, Baungon's corn farmers will be supported by the LGU with tractor and harvest facilities, seeds and farm inputs on low-interest supervised loans payable after harvest.

At harvest time when farm gate prices fall, the MinCOGGS will protect farmers by allowing them to dry and store their corn in the silos.

The farmer will be issued a Quedan paper indicating the volume of corn he deposited.

Using the deposited produce as collateral, farmers could make a cash advance based on the prevailing price.

When the price of corn goes up after peak harvest, the farmer could surrender his Quedan paper and get the balance based on the prevailing price.

After the program orientation, which included a commitment of funding support from the Development Bank of the Philippines, MinDA's banking partner, Mayor Dahino, other local officials and the town's farmers unanimously endorsed the program.

The DBP Cagayan de Oro Lending Center head said the bank could lend up to 100% of the total capitalization requirements of the LGU in the Corn Grains Silo Storage Program.

By the second week of November, MinDA will conduct a two-day workshop for Baungon officials and farmer leaders to craft the details of the program.

Baungon officials said they would like to see the Economic Enterpirse Project operating before the end of 2021 in time for the last corn harvest of the year.

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by Secretary Emmanuel F. Piñol

Chairman, Mindanao Development Authority

The second model of the Balik Probinsya, Bagong Pag-asa Resettlement Area in Mindanao will soon rise in the middle of a forested area in the young town of Kalawit, Zamboanga del Norte.

On Wednesday, Oct. 14, agencies involved in the BP2 Project led by the Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) will participate in the groundbreaking ceremonies to mark the establishment of the Woodridge Village, a 200-hectare carved out of a reservation for the Palayan ng Bayan Program of the previous governments.

The 200-hectare farm will include a subdivision with 200 individual housing units which will be funded by the National Housing Authority with other agencies doing their share.

Zamboanga del Norte Gov. Alberto Uy and Kalawit Mayor Salvador Antojado will lead the local officials while MinDA will lead other national agencies in the groundbreaking ceremonies.

When completed, the communal farm will accommodate 200 families coming home from Metro Manila who will be involved in farming activities with a pre-identified market.

The Kalawit Woodridge Village is the second model of the Balik Probinsya, Bagong Pag-asa Resettlement Area in Mindanao.

The other model is the Kauswagan Green Village in Kauswagan, Lanao del Norte where another 200 families will be resettled in a 6.3-hectare property.

Kauswagan Mayor Rommel Arnado, an organic farming advocate, said the resettlement area has been named Green Village because the resettled families will be involved in growing organic vegetable and raising organic chicken.

Just like in Kalawit, MinDA has already pre-identified the buyer of the produce of Kauwagan’s Green Village.

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Photo from Wikimedia Commons
by Secretary Emmanuel F. Piñol

Chairman, Mindanao Development Authority

The Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) returns to Baungon, Bukidnon tomorrow to start a program which could liberate corn farmers from the exploitation of unscrupulous traders and middlemen.

The program, Mindanao Corn Grains Silo Storage System, also aims to stabilize the supply and price of corn to boost the region's livestock and poultry industry.

MinCOGSS involves the establishment of a grains storage facility to be owned by the Local Government Unit of Baungon and operated by its Economic Enterprise Office.

Baungon is a major corn producing town of Bukidnon witj an estimated harvest area of 7,000 hectares.

Corn farmers, however, have long complained that prices of their produce drop at peak harvest time, leaving them hardly able to pay back their borrowed production money.

Under the program, Baungon's corn farmers will be supported by the LGU with tractor and harvest facilities, seeds and farm inputs on low-interest supervised loans payable after harvest.

At harvest time when farm gate prices fall, the MinCOGGS will protect farmers by allowing them to dry and store their corn in the silos.

The farmer will be issued a Quedan paper indicating the volume of corn he deposited.

Using the deposited produce as collateral, farmers could make a cash advance based on the prevailing price.

When the price of corn goes up after peak harvest, the farmer could surrender his Quedan paper and get the balance based on the prevailing price.

The program is expected to protect farmers from ages of exploitation because of the absence of drying and storage facilities.

Baungon Mayor Giovanni Dahino will lead local officials and the town's farmers who will attend the forum tomorrow.

Representatives from the Development Bank of the Philippines, MinDA's banking partner, experts on silo operations and feed mill owners are expected to join the forum.

The Baungon Project will serve as the template of the interventions by MinDA to develop the corn industry of Mindanao.

 

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by Secretary Emmanuel F. Piñol

Chairman, Mindanao Development Authority

Cassava farmers in at least four Lanao del Sur towns soon will no longer have to travel for two hours to reach either the city of Pagadian or Cotabato to encash checks paid to them by the processing company.

Before the end of the year, the Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP) will establish three Automated Teller Machine (ATM) units in the towns of Malabang and Balabagan and in the compound of the cassava starch manufacturing company, Matling Industrial Commercial Corporation (MICC).

On instructions of DBP President Emmanuel Herbosa, a DBP inspection team accompanied by officials of the Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) checked the three locations for the ATMs.

DBP Branch Manager Wilfredo Kaamino, who led the inspection team, approved three sites for the ATMs - one in the compound of the MICC for the use of the company and farmers who deliver cassava for processing, the second in the town hall of Malabang and the third in Balabagan towns.

The DBP and MinDA team met with the officers of MICC and the mayors of Malabang and Balabagan during the inspection trip yesterday.

Malabang Mayor Tomas Macapodi and Balabagan Mayor Edna Benito both thanked DBP and MinDA for working on the establishment of the ATMs in their towns.

MICC officials had earlier brought the problem of the lack of banking facilities to the MinDA Chairman during a visit to the company's processing facilities early this year.

Ace Gaccad, chief operations officer of MICC, said that farmers had to go to Pagadian City or Cotabato City to encase their checks or the money exchange outlets in the town which charge very high service fees.

Among the concerns raised by the banks in refusing to open facilities in the area was the security risks.

MinDA will address this concern by coordinating with the Western Mindanao Command of the Armed Forces of the Philippines to provide ample security to the bank armored cars which will supply the ATMs with cash.

DBP President Herbosa said the ATMs will be opened before the end of the year.

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