True enough, the municipality of Macrohon in Southern Leyte set itself as one of the homes of clean and abundant seas in the country as it won the grand prize of the 2018 Malinis at Masaganang Karagatan of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources.
The fourth class municipality which topped among the five finalists of the search, have won P30 M worth of fisheries livelihood. It was followed by Alaminos, Pangasinan winning P18 M worth of fisheries livelihood while Gigaquit, Surigao del Norte placed 3rd, bagging P10 M worth of fisheries livelihood.
Macrohon considers their Ridge to Reef approach on conserving their marine biodiversity as one of their agents on winning the National Search for the Outstanding Coastal Municipality in the country.
"We have moved to organic farming, considering the harmful effects of the chemicals used in farms to our marine biodiversity", Isabel Enriquez, Municipal Agriculturist of Macrohon averred.
The said municipality also continues to strengthen its measures against Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated Fishing ( IUUF) activities, observes closed-fishing season, safeguards its marine sanctuaries, and maintains good practices on solid-waste management and mangrove protection/rehabilitation in order to enrich and preserve their bounties of the sea.
MMK is another brainchild of the Department of Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol which envisions to encourage coastal communities to continually enrich and conserve their marine and aquatic riches.
"Fisheries and aquaculture are not only about producing food for today, but also on ensuring food for the next generation" , were the remarks of Secretary Piñol to the fisherfolk communities and Local Government Units(LGU) present during the MMK awarding ceremonies in Siquijor Provincial Capitol.
"Agriculture is not just about today, it is not just about us, it is not just about quality performance. Agriculture is an insurance that the next generation will be able to survive and our role as the people of this generation is to make sure that we preserve, conserve, and prepare for the next generation", he explained.
Furthermore, this endeavor towards sustainability of our fisheries and aquatic resources was supported by various line government agencies whose representatives were present during the awarding ceremonies.
BFAR National Director, Undersecretary Eduardo Gongona and the respective Regional Directors of the Bureau spearheaded the awarding ceremonies. Governor Zaldy Villa of Siquijor also showed his support to the DA-BFAR through his active engagement during the ceremonies.
Withal, other agri-fishery livelihood assistance were given to farmer and fisherfolk beneficiaries of Siquijor during the program. Some of which were fiberglass boats with engine and accessories, and livestock.
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