The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) recently turned over a P17,293,026 worth farm-to-market road to the local government unit (LGU) of Mobo in the province of Masbate to provide the agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) easier and faster access to deliver their products to various markets.
DAR Regional Director Luis Bueno, Jr said the 3.4-kilometer road, stretching from Barangay Lalaguna to Barangay Umabay Interior, both within LaUmaExinPi (barangays Lalaguna, Umabay Exterior and Interior, Pinamalatican) Agrarian Reform Community, would certainly boost the economic lives of the ARBs in the community because the faster travel time to deliver their farm produces would give them more time to cultivate their farms.
The farm-to-market road was the second completed project in this community funded by Agrarian Reform Infrastructure Support Program-Phase III (ARISP III) through the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) in partnership with the Local Government Unit of Mobo. The first infrastructure project was a P2.7 million worth Communal Irrigation System (CIS) which was turned over to Sagawsawan-Mobo Irrigators Association in 2014.
"It is very heartwarming to see our ARISP III projects being fully utilized and enjoyed by our farmer-beneficiaries and other farmer-residents in Mobo. This road complements the irrigation system since both projects help in increasing the agricultural productivity and market accessibility of farmers in LaUmaExinPi ARC. I commend the local government of Mobo for showing and giving us goodwill, support and cooperation," Bueno said.
Vice Mayor Percival Castillo upon receiving the certificate of completion of the project from the DAR said that the road project is a double blessing since it does not only advance the agricultural sector, it also opens up tourism spots in the area that could give additional livelihood to the residents of the community.
"The farm-to-market road has connected distant farms in Barangay Umabay Interior to the national road. It lessened the effort and expenditure of farmers in bringing their produce to the market; and provided a faster and safer access to tourist spots in the area like the Sagawsawan Waterfall and the biggest Toog tree (Philippine Rosewood) in the country." Castillo said.
Aside from, Director Bueno and Vice Mayor Castillo, representing Mayor Susan Castillo, other personalities who attended the ceremony include Assistant Regional Director Rodrigo Realubit, Provincial Agrarian Reform Program Officer (PARPO) II Felix Fruto, OIC-PARPO I Herald Tambal, OIC-Chief Agrarian Reform Program Officer Floro Espares; and other government officials. (PIO Ross Aguilar Lustestica)