PADRE GARCIA, Batangas — Former Special Assistant to the President Christopher “Bong” Go vowed to help the agricultural sector strengthen the agri-businesses of farmers, fisherfolks and livestock owners as he joined the 69th anniversary celebration of the Kabakahan Festival in Padre Garcia in Batangas province.
Go said agriculture is an important part of his legislative agenda as he runs for the Senate in the 2019 elections. He added that the industry is a vital source of livelihood for Filipinos and should be given importance so that economic development is felt in the grassroots.
“Ang agrikultura ay tututukan ko at kung paano tayo makakatulong sa inyong pamumuhay. Importante na maramdaman ninyo ang pag-unlad ng ating ekonomiya,” he said.
Go lauded the town for being known as the “Cattle Trading Capital of the Philippines.” He reiterated the need to set national policies and programs that would provide more support to the local industry.
“Kailangan masiguradong maging globally competitive ang agriculture sector ng ating bansa,” he said. Go added that cattle growers and traders famous for their quality ‘Batangas beef’ should be given more support in order to sell their products to a bigger market.
Go, in an interview with the local media, highlighted various infrastructure projects being developed by the Duterte administration in Southern Luzon that would help boost agri-businesses in the region.
These include the construction of the Mindoro-Batangas super bridge, PNR Manila South Bridge long haul, and improvements in Batangas Port.
He said that these projects will improve transportation to and from the region, promote tourism, and support the agriculture industry by making the local market more conducive to trade and commerce.
Go also reiterated his roots that he is a Batangueño. Although he is more known as a Visayan from Mindanao, his mother belongs to the Tesoro clan of Batangas.
“Lumaki man akong bisaya, pinagmamalaki ko na ako ay may dugong Batangueño,” he said.
After the Kabakahan festival in Batangas, Bong Go also joined the celebration of Paskong Pahiyas in Lucban, Quezon.
In his visit, Go announced that in the next two months, Malasakit Centers will open in Southern Luzon, particularly in Quezon and Batangas. The Malasakit Center is a one stop shop situated in government hospitals where patients can avail of financial assistance from the Department of Health, Department of Social Welfare and Development, Philhealth and Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office.
Go said he would keep on helping the government establish more Malasakit Centers nationwide and push to institutionalize it into a law so that every province will have a center in their locality.
“Magiging malaking tulong ang Malasakit center lalo na sa rural areas kung saan sa ngayon, kinakailangan pa pumunta sa iba’t ibang ahensiya ng gobyerno ang maysakit para makakuha ng medical assistance. Sa Malasakit Center, mas madali na makakuha ng tulong medikal mula sa gobyerno,” he said reiterating that availing of assistance from government agencies should not be a burden to Filipinos.