The Department of Labor and Employment has allotted P5.3 million to aid farmers in Negros Occidental affected by the El Niño phenomenon under the agency's DOLE Integrated Livelihood and Emergency Employment Program (DILEEP).
Ma. Zyrene Prietos, Livelihood and Labor Program focal person, said yesterday that DOLE-Negros Occidental Field Office, through the help of the Office of the Provincial Agriculturist, is identifying farmers gravely affected by the dry spell with the first quarter of the year as target release of funds.
Prietos said the towns of Hinobaan, Pontevedra, Hinigaran, IlogandKabankalan City will be prioritized because they lead as the largest in the sums of crop damage, barangays and areas affected.
“We still have to meet with the local government unit heads in order to devise a strategy to efficiently allocate the DILEEP budget,” Prietos said.
DOLE-NOFO is also reminding LGUs who have not yet submitted their liquidation of the DILEEP funds from the previous years to do so, in order not to affect the distribution of the new livelihood assistance and emergency employment funds, she said.
If the city and municipality LGUs focal heads will find it difficult to serve several barangays and famers, DOLE is willing to take the DILEEP transaction to the barangay level to effectively distribute and manage the program, she added.
Identified farmers can choose between the livelihood assistance and emergency employment when availing DILEEP,she also said.
Farmers who want to avail of the livelihood assistance must submit a proposal to DOLE for assessment and backing, Prietos said.
Meanwhile, farmers signing for the emergency employment known as the TUPAD program will avail of labor salary personal protection equipment and GSIS enrollment, she said.
Farmers under TUPAD will work in partnerships with LGUs from 10 to 30 days, in a transition employment while waiting for the drought to end, Prietos also said.*KBC
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