MANILA, Philippines — Senator Risa Hontiveros has expressed her gratitude to the farmers groups that have expressed support for her re-election bid in May 2022, committing to push measures that will boost the development of the agriculture sector.
“I am humbled that our farmers expressed their support and put their trust in me. Hindi lang ito basta suporta kundi pagtaya at pagbabahagi nila sa akin ng kanilang kinabukasan. Hinding-hindi ko sisirain ang tiwalang ibinigay ninyo sa akin,” Hontiveros said.
The Magsasaka Partylist released its resolution endorsing Hontiveros as a senatorial candidate, emphasizing the unity in principle in promoting the rights and interests of the agricultural sector.
Likewise, the Federation of Free Farmers (FFF), in a statement, named Hontiveros as one of the senatorial candidates the group is supporting. FFF said such decision was based on outstanding record of public service and firm support for the agricultural sector of the candidates.
“Higit sa pasasalamat ay ang pangako kong makikipagtulungan sa mga magsasaka, mangingisda at kanilang mga pamilya na mapaunlad ang agrikultura para makapagbigay ng disenteng hanapbuhay at food security sa bansa,”
Hontiveros is known for her relentless work in advancing the rights and welfare of the agricultural sector. She filed Senate Resolution urging the review of the implementation of the Rice Tariffication Law. She also called for the recall of the executive order lowering tariffs on imported rice.
Hontiveros also revealed various issues of smuggling including the “rice tara-ffication” in the National Food Authority and the smuggling of imported vegetables and fruits that grossly affects local production.
Hontiveros then pledged to closely work with the different farmer and fisher groups to come up with safety nets and advance policy measures that will enhance the competitiveness of domestic agriculture production and to rely less on food importation.
“Panghuli dapat ang importation sa listahan ng options. Unahing palakasin ang sariling atin. Ang pag-aalaga sa ating mga magsasaka at mangingisda ay pagpapayabong sa industriya ng agrikultura,” she said.
“Government must invest in Agriculture — in our farmers and fisherfolk — to make our local production sustainable, efficient and competitive and at the same time, help uplift their lives, and – for agriculture to fulfill its role in driving the economy towards recovery and development towards building back a better world,” she concluded.