P64.5-M for Antique's NGP, 34 Pos signs agreement

(From left) PENRO Ruel de los Reyes of Antique, Antique Governor Rhodora Cadiao, PO President Representative and DENR 6 Regional Director Jim O Sampulna sign the Letters of Agreement for 34 People’s Organizations contracted for the National Greening Project in the province of Antique. Right photo shows Director Sampulna, PENRO de los Reyes and Governor Cadiao signs the NGP Covenant thereby declaring their full support to the implementation of the program in Antique province. Witnessing the signing of the LOA are PENRO Antique Head Executive Asst. Mirza Samilliano, Culasi CENRO Vicente T. Mellizas and San Jose CENRO Louie L. Laud.

           A P64.5-M total budget for the implementation of the National Greening Program (NGP) is allotted by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) for the province of Antique.

             Out of the P64.5-M budget, a contract cost worth P38.958 million was awarded to the 34 People’s Organization (POs) whose project areas are scattered in the ten (10) municipalities of the province, namely: Sibalom, Bugasong, Patnongon, Valderrama, Culasi, Barbaza, San Remegio, Laua-an, Tibiao and Libertad.

           The 34 POs attended the recent People’s Organization (POs) Summit held at Barrio House Resort and Training Center in San Jose, and signed the Letter of Agreement (LOA) to undertake three components of the NGP such as: seedlings production, site preparation and protection and maintenance.

             “The DENR 6 is keen on giving projects to our grassroots communities to help them elevate their socio-economic status. NGP is one of the priority programs we implement to benefit our community folks. Another priority program we have is the free patent issuance. Through this, we give technical assistance among land beneficiaries to avail of free titles. Owning a title gives one the security of tenure over his/her property. Through DENR programs, we wanted to see empowered communities,” said DENR 6 Regional Director Jim O Sampulna.

             “With the implementation of NGP in the province, we positively hope to erase Antique’s name from the list of poor provinces in the country,” said Antique lady Governor Rhodora Cadiao.

             “Research results have shown that there are thousands of malnourished children in Antique and under my leadership, the provincial government is working towards eradicating poverty. We seek your support [referring to the 34 POs] to make these dreams become realities – not for me, but for all Antiqueños,” she added.

             The NGP is a priority program of the national government that aims to reforest 1.5 million hectares of denuded areas with 1.5 billion trees and will end by 2016.

            “Through the program, the DENR is helping the province work towards economic development as the program have livelihood components,” emphasized Antique PENR Officer Ruel de los Reyes.

The NGP hire community workers and pay them to raise seedlings, plant them and maintain and protect them. All the produce that will come from the plantation by harvest time will go to the community, too. The program was able to help NGP beneficiaries improve their socio-economic status alongside supporting sustainable development by protecting our natural resources.

After the PO Summit, DENR Director Sampulna, Antique Governor Cadiao and PENRO de los Reyes signed the NGP Covenant thereby giving their full support for the program.


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