Yolanda affected fishermen get fishing boats

Fishermen associations from 16 municipalities hardest hit by typhoon Yolanda in 2013 finally saw the fulfillment of their dreams.

After strong winds and storm surges battered their homes and fishing boats, they are back to fishing.

The Provincial Government, through the Office of the Provincial Agriculturist, turned over  50 fishing pumpboats  to members of various fishermen organizations  in Bantayan, Sta. Fe, Madridejos, Pilar, San Francisco, Tudela, Poro, Medellin, Daanbantayan,  Bogo City, San Remigio, Tabuelan, Borbon, Sugod, Tuburan, and Tabogon.

Gov. Hilario P. Davide III gamely showed a “test drive at sea” under the watchful eye of elements of Naval Central Commnand, NAVFORCEN.

The pumpboats, powered by 16 horsepower diesel engines at the cost of 17, 000 each plus fish nets, were made by artisans from the municipality of Cordova who have been making pumpboats for other government agencies like DENR.

Gov. Davide is thankful to the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office for funding this livelihood project. The PCSO, says Provincial Agriculturist Dr. Roldan Saragena, allocated 50% of its Charity Fund from on-line lottery games last Dec. 19, 2013 for Cebu Province to assist areas hit by typhoon Yolanda.

The Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office set aside P6, 049, 177.69 as funding for the project.

The MOA signing was between then PCSO Gen. Manager Atty. Jose Ferdinand Roxas and Gov. Davide as representative of the province.

The use of the boats is on rotation basis among association members.

Provincial Agriculturist Office Fisheries Division Head, Aileen Cielo requested the project beneficiaries to take care of the boats. “This is your livelihood and food security, tantamount to Kalambuan sa Matag Sugboanon, ” Cielo said in closing.

Municipal agriculture officers,and municipal officials witnessed the pumpboats turnover.

Governor Davide, however, wants to do more for Cebu’s fishermen as the province has done for the farmers.

The Governor is thinking more like a program parallel to the Farmer Scientists’ Training Program (FSTP). He wants to do this in tandem with Vice Gov. Agnes Magpale.