STA.FE, Leyte- Farmers of this town, still suffering from the impacts of supertyphoon Yolanda, have yet to receive assistance from the Department of Agriculture (DA). This was disclosed by town Councilor Eddie Lantajo, who chairs the committee on agriculture of the Sangguniang Bayan. According to Lantajo, they made a request to Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala to give their farmers farm machineries but only to be told that farmers should form a cooperative before they could receive their request.

The distribution of farm implements are to be coursed through the cooperatives and not through individual farmers, Alcala said on his response to the letter-request of Lantajo.
It was learned from the municipal councilor that there is no existing farmers’ cooperative in Sta. Fe, one of the rice granaries of Leyte which suffered extensive damage due to Yolanda.
It was also learned from Lantajo that out of the 2,000 sacks of palay seeds that they have requested to the DA, only 600 sacks of palay seeds were distributed. Based on the information that he received from their municipal agriculturist, Lantajo disclosed that the reason why there were only 600 sacks of palay seeds were distributed so far was because these should first undergo some laboratory examinations to ensure that these seeds are ready for planting.

“Until today, there are still farmers who are waiting and hoping for the remaining rice seeds to be distributed to them,” Lantajo said. The promised fertilizers have yet to be distributed to the farmers too, Lantajo added. (RYAN GABRIEL LLOSA ARCENAS)