Seven from Lacub municipality, eight from Tubo and 45 from Malibcong were provided with Php 10,000 worth of livelihood kits individually to empower and re-enable their businesses as they have experienced loss due to the presence of Communist-Terrorist Groups (CTGs) in their areas.
These three municipalities were listed by the Provincial Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (PTF-ELCAC) as top-priorities in the implementation of President’s Rodrigo Duterte’s Executive Order No. 70 Institutionalizing a “Whole-of-Nation” approach in ending local communist armed conflict.
The livelihood kits given to the beneficiaries are assorted grocery items for their sari-sari stores, kitchen utensils for food business owners and poultry feeds for farmers.
The DTI-Abra Provincial Office led by Provincial Director Samuel Gallardo earlier held an Entrepreneurial Development Seminar and lectures among the participants.
Gallardo stated that one of DTI’s primary mandates now is to empower businesses in local communities which are on the verge of shutting down due to problems of peace and order.
“We give hope and support to micro, small and medium enterprises who are experiencing distress and now we are prioritizing entrepreneurs in areas where there is communist presence,” Gallardo said.
Ms. Carolin Ortega from Lacub expressed her gratitude to the help extended by the government to them.
“We are grateful for the assistance you have given us and we hope that you never get tired in uplifting our businesses especially in the far-flung barangays,” she said.
LtC. Ulysis Lauded, 24thInfantry Battalion Commander, reported that some of the beneficiaries were former rebels who returned to mainstream society to start their business. Due to the crisis brought by the Corona Virus Disease (Covid-19), some of them are facing difficulty in managing their businesses.
Abra Governor Maria Jocelyn Bernos said that this support extended by the government is very timely in response to the crisis brought by Covid-19 pandemic. Moreover, she appeals to them for their cooperation in order to end this battle against CTGs once and for all.
“We have shifted our focus to you as our priority municipalities and we are ready to help your businesses grow in order to spark development in your barangays,” Bernos assured.
Partner agencies like the Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources were also present during the awarding. (JDP/CAGT – PIA CAR, Abra)
By Christian Allister G. Tubadeza