House of Representatives Speaker Ferdinand Martin G. Romualdez on Tuesday pledged to help find a long-term solution to the plight of all sectors affected by the closure of the Central Azucarera de Don Pedro, Inc. (CADPI) in Nasugbu, Batangas.
Romualdez made the pledge after leading the distribution of PHP10,000 cash aid each to 800 sugar farmers who lost their livelihood after the shutdown of the largest sugar mill in the province.
“I have requested all government agencies now here with us to pool their resources together and come up with a long-term and comprehensive solution to the displacement issue affecting the farm workers and their families. Inaasahan ko po ang report nila sa office ko sa lalong madaling panahon (I am expecting them to submit their reports to my office at the soonest possible time),” he said in his brief message.
He said the financial assistance, which his office secured through the Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situation (AICS) program of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), is just the beginning of collaboration to help the sugar farmers.
Romualdez said, “In times of crisis and adversity, it is everyone’s duty to stand together and extend a helping hand to those in need.”
“Today, as we distribute these much-needed resources, we are not just providing financial support; we are also offering a glimmer of hope, a symbol of solidarity, and a reminder that no one is alone in their struggles. It is my firm belief that by working together and supporting one another, we can overcome any challenge that comes our way,” he added.
Representatives of the Sugar Folks Unity for Genuine Agricultural Reform (SUGAR), together with the Gabriela Party-list, had earlier sought the assistance of the House Speaker after the closure of CAPDI in December last year.
Meanwhile, DSWD officials assured that similar payouts would be held in the coming days to help those adversely affected by the sugar mill closure. (PNA)