DA–RFO 8 celebrates 122nd Founding Anniversary

Created on Friday, 26 June 2020 Published Date

To commemorate the founding of the Department of Agriculture in 1898, the DA–Regional Field Office 8 held a simple, albeit memorable, ceremony at the 4th Floor Conference Room, Green Building, on June 23, 2020. Observing strict physical distancing and wearing of face masks by the participants, the occasion was graced by invited guests, notably BFAR 8 Regional Director Dr. Juan D. Albaladejo, PIA 8 Regional Director Erlinda Olivia P. Tiu, and a representative of the Philippine Statistics Agency 8, and the management and staff of the regional department.

It started with a virtual Thanksgiving Mass officiated by the Rev. Fr. Dave C. Carillo, followed with the lecture and demo showcasing the Aquaponics Technology by Dir. Albaladejo, highlighting its advantages and cost benefits. This improved technology was conceptualized in support of the Urban Agriculture under the Agri–4Ps, or the Plant, Plant, Plant Program, which aims to help ensure food self–sufficiency as the country battles the COVID19 health crisis.

Immediately after, the activity segued to the program proper. ARD Elvira C. Torres welcomed everyone present. She cited the appropriateness of the anniversary theme– Agrikultura ang Pag–asa sa Kabila ng Pandemya, to the current situation, and gave due recognition to the employees and staff of the regional office as courageous frontliners manning the checkpoints, and to the farmers and fisherfolk who continue to produce food despite the imminent threat of the disease.

Mr. Inocencio R. Morallos, Chairman, RAFC 8, delivered his taped Inspirational Message as he could not be physically present during the program. He congratulated the regional office for its trailblazing achievements through the years and its contribution to the agricultural development in Region 8.

Next, three (3) coffee table books were launched. The first, entitled “Sinirangan Bisayas: A Metamorphic Journey towards a Bountiful Harvest and Enhanced Income (Tungo sa Masaganang Ani at Mataas na Kita),” echoes the call of Sec. William D. Dar to help the lowly farmers rise from the bondage of poverty through the interventions of DA’s banner programs and special projects, research/satellite stations, and laboratory services.

The two (2) other books are documentaries of the Special Area for Agricultural Development (SAAD) Program, one published in 2019 is entitled “Upholding the Dignity of Life of Farmers and Fisherfolk,” and the latest, in 2020, is entitled “Farmer Heroes of Eastern Visayas.” Both chronicle the lives of beneficiaries who have since leveled up from marginalized farming to a better quality of life for their family and community.

After the book signing by the dignitaries present, RED Angel C. Enriquez delivered her Keynote Speech. In it, she quoted the good Secretary’s statement that currently, the DA is hounded by many issues, but they turn out beneficial to those concerned because they serve as challenges; and no matter how insurmountable the challenge is, if there is consultative decision–making, the solution to issues/concerns would all fall into place.

RED Enriquez proceeded to acknowledge the contribution of every division/section and how each individual within played a role towards fulfilling the mandate of the office. She also noted the synergy and complementarity between divisions, which help facilitate to achieve targets and objectives. She ended her talk with the remark that she hopes to leave a mark in the lives of people she has met or encountered.

The highlight of the activity was the Conferment by RED Enriquez, RTD Sultan, and ARD Torres of Plaques of Recognition/ Awards to Gawad Saka Regional Qualifiers and Meritorious Service Awardees, including those in OPAS/OMAS, who have rendered service during extraordinary circumstances.

To wrap–up the activity, RTD Larry U. Sultan gave the Closing Remarks. After acknowledging the guests and visitors, he reflected on how fast–paced life has turned into when people have become prone to errors during trying times, such as what we are experiencing now, due to pressures. But, according to him, for as long as one does not forget good relations, follow the golden rule, and always gives it his/her best shot, it will end up well. He winded up his talk with a quotation from Stephen Grellet, which states, “I shall pass this way but once; any good that I can do or any kindness I can show to any human being; let me do it now. Let me not defer nor neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again.” ### (Francisco C. Rosaroso, Chief, RAFIS)

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