IN a country teeming with poor farmers and fishers, the administration of incoming President Ferdinand “Bongbong” R. Marcos Jr. ought to speed up the modernization of agriculture.
The new government, in the view of many, must exert its best efforts to modernize agriculture to win the battle against hunger and poverty in this nation of more 110 million people.
Majority of the people still live below the so-called “poverty line,” with many of them reeling from food insecurity caused by various factors, like unfavorable weather conditions.
Like our beleaguered farmers, fishermen and other rural dwellers, we believe that food security is to be one of the priority concerns of President Marcos and his trusted lieutenants.
Through the wonders of science and technology, we are hopeful that the government succeeds in improving food production in this impoverished but natural resources-rich country.
“Naniniwala tayo na sa ilalim ng administrasyong Marcos at sa kumpas ng magiging bagong Kalihim ng Kagawaran ng Agrikultura ay gaganda ang buhay ng mga magsasaka,” said a rice farmer.
Note that during the administration of the late President Ferdinand Edralin Marcos, the Philippines, where the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) is located, was a major rice exporter.
Today, however, this supposedly bulwark of democracy in this part of the world is one of the world’s major rice importers.
“Ang napakasakit ay sa Los Banos, Laguna-based IRRI pa nag-aral ng kursong agrikultura ang mga Asyanong nage-export ngayon ng bigas sa Pilipinas,” lamented an Ilocano rice farmer.
What a pity!