Ecija group bags DA special award

CABANATUAN CITY -- An irrigators association group supervised by the Division 3 office of the National Irrigation Administration-Upper Pampanga River Integrated Irrigation Systems in Nueva Ecija bagged a special award for being one of the top achievers in the rice industry sector for the 2018 Rice Achievers Awards (RAA) program to be held at the Philippine International Convention Center today.

Engr. Jose Ariel G. Domingo, manager of NIA-UPRIIS Division 3 said the Makabilog Maynabo Tambo-Irrigators Association (MMT-IA) headed by its president Rolando “Jun” R. Maniquis Jr. will be conferred a special award by the Department of Agriculture in recognition of its outstanding contribution to the rice farming industry in 2018.

MMT-IA, comprising 77 farmer-members tilling 106 hectares of farmlands in Bgy. Las Piñas, Peñaranda, is one of 10 IA-awardees to be honored by the DA during the said event. Also set to be cited are eight major IA-winners in the national irrigation systems (NIS) and communal irrigation systems (CIS) categories.

Domingo said it was a milestone achievement for him to be able to lead the MMT-IA group of the 48-year-old Maniquis into getting the said accolade under his watch as UPRIIS-Division 3 chief.

“Target ko talaga na mai-extend lahat ng tulong sa ating farmers at mga IAs ayon na din sa atas ni NIA Administrator Ricardo R. Visaya at dahil na din sa matagal ko nang pangarap na manalo sa ganitong mga programa kaya ibinigay ko lahat ng tulong mula sa Division 3 dahil ambisyon ko din na makilala at maging winner ang ating mga magsasaka sa larangan ng pagsasaka,” said Domingo.

Domingo said MMT-IA’s winning feat marked several firsts in the history of the UPRIIS-Division 3. “First time na naging IA awardee at first time din na sumali ang Division 3 at naging winner during my watch, tapos first time din na sumali ang grupo ni IA Jun Maniquis ang Makabilog Maynabo Tambo at naging awardee,”added Domingo.

Amilyn M. Martin, Division 3 Irrigation Development Officer said MMT-IA satisfied all the criteria before bagging the said award, including having at least five sources of income and an updated accounting files and book-keeping records.