Pikit, Cotabato- A group of farmers are the latest group to avail of the assistance from the DOLE Integrated Livelihood Program (DILP) as the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) 12 handed-over one (1) unit 4WD value tractor and rotary tiller amounting to P998,024.00 for fifty-four (54) members of the Malmar  Agricultural Farmer’s Association (MAFA).

No less than the Regional Director Raymundo Agravante together with Provincial Director Marjorie Latoja awarded the said farm machineries to Mayor Sultan Sumulong of the Local Government Unit of Pikit and the MAFA officers. Also present during the release were Christy Espiloy of COA 12, DOLE 12 Livelihood Task Force Malmar, and the BLGU-Tinitulan officials.

On the same date, RD Agravante and Mayor Sumulong forged a Memorandum of Agreement as partners in the implementation of the DOLE flagship programs in the Municipality of Pikit.

The farmers’ group, composed mainly of Indigenous Peoples (IPs) and marginalized workers can now enjoy a pre-harvest equipment that will support efficient land preparation and eventually upgrade the members’ farm output.

“Napakalaking tulong talaga ito sa aming grupo at malaking pasalamat naming sa DOLE sa pagpasok at pagbaba ng makinarya na magiging daan sa bawas-gastos sa pagsasaka ng aming miyembro,” said association president Alimatar Lumangka.

In his message, RD Agravante conveyed Secretary Bello’s aspiration to help more workers avail of the livelihood program of the Department especially this time of pandemic.

“Dala ko ang pasasalamat ng aming mahal na Secretay Silvestre “Bebot” Bello at hangaring makatulong ang mga farm equipment na ito na magpapaganda ng ani at magpapalago ng kita ng miyembro ng asosasyon,” said RD Agravante.

DILP is a flagship program of the DOLE which seeks to contribute to poverty reduction and reduce vulnerabilty to risks of the working poor, vulnerable and marginalized workers either through emergency employment, promotion of entrepreneurship and community enterprises. End/CDGamboa/MPLatoja