>Arthur Yap Donates P6M to Bilar, Bohol

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  Agriculture Secretary Arthur Yap breaks ground for the P6M improvement of the Bilar Agricultural College Communal Irrigation System, aimed to drastically increase rice harvests while stressing the need for government to spur jobs in the countryside.  
  With a financial crisis crippling industries here, the government has pressed on long-term investments in agriculture to manifest its livelihood and emergency employment program aimed at helping the poor from the effects of the crunch. 
  ”The government has the money, thanks to the fiscal reforms implemented by President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo,” Yap bared. 
  Yap, who is the cabinet steward for livelihood and emergency employment program in Bohol impressed on the long term benefits of investing in irrigation facilities and small water impounding projects just as the that is investing money on agriculture. 
  For the project, government authorities hope to maximize 40 hectares of irrigated rice lands by generating hectares and rehabilitating the 35 hectares of prime beds in barangays Zamora and Riverside in this town, states Engr. Olympio Galagala Jr., Bohol irrigation officer. 
  Using the excess water of Bilar’s Yectin River, the irrigation system improvement is also expected to benefit residents who would be provided river bank protection, upgrade harvests and help 186 farmer beneficiaries of the Zamros Irrigators’ Association, according to the project profile. 
  Sec. Yap also asked farmers assembled during the activity to switch to organic fertilizer as he promised to put up two shredder machines for use by tow irrigators’ association in composting activities. 
  He also instructed Bilar Mayor Fanuel Cadeliña to seek for a new site for organic agriculture so as to allow the farmers wider options for growing rice. 
  Meanwhile, the mayor vowed to help in establishing such a site as he conveyed the town’s gratefulness for the projects he received for his people. 
  ”It has been a long desire for the people here to maximize on their rice production output,” Cadeliña said told the secretary. 
  He also hoped the secretary’s coming would signal, not the end but the beginning of strengthened cooperation between the local government and the agriculture department.

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