The regional agriculture department has completed 94 percent of Financial Subsidy to Rice Farmers (FSRF) releases, but 1,113 more grants remain unreleased due to the lockdown and the capacity of farmers to go to areas where there are Land Bank of the Philippines (Landbank) branches.
Department of Agriculture (DA) MIMAROPA focal person for rice program Maria Teresa Carido said Wednesday that several reasons for the unreleased grants are lockdown in some areas and senior citizen farmers who cannot easily claim their financial aid in the bank.
“Several reasons are lockdown in other places and senior citizens,” she said.
Most of unreleased FSRF grants are intended for farmers in the towns of Rizal with 259 farmers, Roxas with 136, and Dumaran with 118.
As of the July 1 update given by DA MIMAROPA, the department has already given P5,000 cash assistance each to 14,297 farmers out of 15,132 total submitted beneficiaries for the province of Palawan.
Combining the provinces of Occidental Mindoro and Palawan which are Rice Comprehensive Enhancement Fund (RCEF) provinces, DA MIMAROPA has a total of 25, 927 farmer-beneficiaries in the region.
Carido said that there are also 660 beneficiaries who are subject to cancellation.
“Iyong for cancellation, marami kasi dyan ay na-validate namin na walang rice area, more than one-hectare ‘yong area, double-entry, and spouse ng SURE Aid beneficiary,” she said.
Carido said DA is open for replacements provided that the rice farmers must be tilling one hectare and below and Registry System for Basic Sectors in Agriculture (RSBSA)-registered to qualify.
Even the department has reached 94 percent of accomplishment in FSRF grants releases, Carido is still uncertain if the distribution will be completed within the month of July.
“Hindi ko sure. Depende kasi ‘yan sa availability ng Landbank and capacity ng farmers. Meron kasi na naka-lockdown outside Palawan,” she said.