POLITICAL analysts acknowledge that the agriculture sector plays a key role in the outcome of next year’s automated presidential, congressional and local elections.
In fact, farmers, fishermen and other farm workers, together with their loved ones, are a potent force to reckon with during national and local polls in the Philippines.
Bothered by the declining prices of their products, such as vegetables, these beleaguered Filipinos are likely to choose pro-agriculture candidates in next year’s polls.
That’s the reason why many candidates seeking national and local positions are expected to portray themselves as “champions” of farmers and fishermen.
Certainly, many farm workers and their families will be attracted by programs and reforms aimed at uplifting the living conditions of people in the countryside.
Note that majority of the people living in the impoverished countryside are farmers and fishermen, who now find it impossible to send their sons and daughters to college.
“Sa ngayon nga ay kulang pang pambayad sa utang ang kinikita namin dahil sa taas ng presyo ng abono, pesticide, gasolina at iba pang gamit sa bukid,” according to a farmer.
“Kaya mahalagang may mga pro-farmer na lingkod-bayan, kagaya ng mga mambabatas, para may boses kami sa gobyerno,” said an irate farmer in Alcala, Pangasinan.
Indeed, the agriculture sector is a major source of potential votes for candidates, notably those seeking the nation’s top political posts – President and Vice President.