SABLAN, Benguet

Mayor Alfredo Dacumos Jr. vowed his administration’s sustain support to farmers including
fruit growers, marking their town’s month-long fruit festival which officially opened on Monday (Aug.7) amid intermittent rains. In his opening message, Mayor Dacumos acknowledged the cooperation among residents, barangay leaders and local officials in holding the festival amid
inclement weather especially the fury of typhoon Egay which damaged countless local fruit products.

The local chief executive, a retired police officer, also pointed out the convergence among government regional line agencies extending valued assistance to make the festival a success in line with this year’s theme — “Fruits of Harmony: Celebrating Nature’s Symphony.” He also challenged fruit and vegetable farmers to continue planting to increase production to preserve their town as the fruit basket of the province.

The mayor had placed agriculture and tourism development as one of his administration’s priorities. In doing so, different fruit seeds and trees were distributed to farmers and growers. Other support given to farmers through the municipal agriculture office and in cooperation with the agriculture department include farm inputs and additional fruit seedlings. He also emphasized the capacity building-trainings, and marketing and investment seminars given by the trade and industry department.

Dacumos also gave a brief update on the demo-farm being established at Sitio Paida in Barangay Bayabas. Municipal Agriculturist Ramon Anocioco, for his part, gave a brief status of local fruit
production, reporting a “significant” increase in the number of fruit trees planted and areas.
Anocioco reported that some P1.5 million were allocated for local agriculture programs and activities, among others. On record, Sablan, a fifth class municipality, and very much dependent on Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA) now National Tax Allocation (NTA), has a total budget of P112 million for 2023 that includes its P93 million allocation from said NTA.

The morning rains did not dampen the spirit of local officials, heads of different department and staff, local police and fire contingent in participating in the parade witnessed by villagers. The opening program also marked with Mayor Dacumos leading other town officials in declaring the festival open by unveiling the series of activities lined up followed by the ribbon cutting that signalled the start of its Agri- Trade Commercial Fair. The much awaited activities include InterBarangay Fruit Fair Fruit Medley and Farmer’s Congress set in the first week of September.
In a random interviews, residents of this town and nerby areas look forward for a productive celebration with more fruits products to be harvested and sold to public.

Primo Agatep/ABN

Amianan Balita Ngayon