February 2, 2018 marks another milestone for the Bangsamoro Development Agency (BDA) with the Department of Agriculture (DA) as the two agencies joined hands in the promotion of for sustainable development through urban farming.
On the said day, BDA formally received 1 unit of hydroponics from DA through the Aboitiz Equity Ventures, Inc.
Hydroponics is a farming facility used in a farming system called aquaponics where both plants and fish symbiotically grow together.
The turnover ceremony was graced by guests and partners from various agencies such as the DA, Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR), Aboitiz Equity Ventures, Inc, Bureau of Plant Industry (BPI) Central Office and the DA-Agricultural Training Institute (ATI).
The program was formally opened with a prayer led by Hashim Manticayan, BDA head for human resource development followed by the singing of Philippine National Anthem.
Atty. Ranibai D. Dilangalen, DA undersecretary for special concerns delivered the opening remarks while Dr. Danda N. Juanday, Cotabato City administrator spoke for the welcome address.
Engr. Windel Diangcalan, BDA deputy executive director stated the agency’s message of thanks and commitment in behalf of the executive director Mohammad S. Yacob.
Messages of support were also delivered by Archit. Eduard Guerra of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) Joint Normalization Committee (JNC), Zahrumin Andong Midtimbang, barangay captain of Lugay-Lugay, Cotabato City, Engr. Milagros C. Casis, DA- 12 regional director and Christopher Camba, VP-corporate external relations of Aboitiz.
Later part of the event was an orientation on the management of hydroponics/aquaponics farming system by consultant from Aboitiz (Netaphils Company) and BFAR Region 12.
A feeding program was also conducted for children of identified training-participants of the hydroponics/aquaponics.
To note, BDA and DA formally launched the Urban Agriculture- Pagkain Para sa Masa Program at the BDA Demo Farm in Lugay- Lugay Cotabato City on December 15, 2017.
It was in the last quarter of 2017 that BDA and DA started meeting and talking together until the two agencies finally agreed to work hand-in-hand towards the common goal of ensuring affordable and healthy food for every Filipino family through urban farming which is a sustainable development approach.