Negros officials thank Marcos Jr. for NIR Law

By Dolly Yasa

BACOLOD CITY—Negros Occidental Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson and Bacolod City Mayor Alfredo “Albee” Benitez thanked President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. for signing into law the Negros Island Region (NIR) Act during his visit on Thursday.

President Marcos Jr. was in Bacolod for the distribution of more than P80 million in financial assistance, as well as agricultural and fishery implements, to farmers, fisherfolk, and families under the Presidential Assistance for Farmers, Fisherfolk, and Families (PAFFF) program, who were adversely affected by the El Niño phenomenon.

In his message during the program, Lacson said, “With the signing of the NIR Act into law and the distribution of assistance, we know we can count on you to stand with us through challenges and triumphs alike.”

He added that the commitment of the President to uplifting the agricultural sector in a predominantly agricultural province “is greatly appreciated, and your concern for the Negrenses is truly felt.”

The governor further stated that the comprehensive aid given by the President, including financial support, agricultural inputs, infrastructure development, and the improvement of irrigation systems and provincial access roads, technical assistance, and livelihood support, will undoubtedly recharge and revitalize the agricultural sector despite the drought.

Mayor Benitez also expressed his gratitude, saying, “We are taking this opportunity to thank you, Mr. President, for signing into law last June 13 Republic Act 12000 establishing the Negros Island Region. Thank you, Mr. President, for making the dream of One Negros a reality.”

He added that the PAFFF program is a significant help to farmers and fishermen.

“The benefits of this program to Bacolod are immense. It will not only boost the agricultural productivity and economic stability of our farmers and fisherfolk but also enhance the overall resilience and sustainability of our city. The program will create new opportunities for growth and development, ensuring a better quality of life for all Bacolodnons.”

Benitez further noted that “here in Negros Occidental, we feel the effects of El Niño. The climate risk and vulnerability to natural hazards are high. We also have an active Kanlaon volcano, and many of our LGUs are coastal.”

“That is why we are enhancing our emergency preparedness, Mr. President. We are strengthening environmental protection and climate adaptation to mitigate disaster risks,” Benitez added.


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