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Aquino to meet with farmers

LONG MARCH On the second day of their march, 60 farmers from Bukidnon and Davao pass through the boundary of Sumilao and Manolo Fortich towns in Bukidnon. They are walking the 100 kilometers from Malaybalay City to Cagayan de Oro City to demand full implementation of the agrarian reform program by the Aquino administration. They will join 5,000 other farmers from Negros and Batangas in the march on Malacañang in Manila. BOBBY LAGSA / INQUIRER MINDANAO

MANILA, Philippines – President Benigno Aquino III is scheduled to meet Thursday afternoon with farmers demanding faster distribution of agricultural plots under the government’s land reform program.

Aquino’s meeting with the farmers in Malacañang is expected to take place after he was briefed by administration officials who met with representatives of the farmers while he was abroad last week.

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“Our government has always recognized the vitality of rural enterprises toward achieving food security and equitable economic growth,” said Abigail Valte, one of Aquino’s spokespersons, in a statement announcing the President’s dialogue with the farmers.

“This opportunity for farmers to personally meet the President is a reaffirmation of our government’s unwavering commitment for agrarian reform and vigorous support for the development of the countryside,” she added.

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Aquino’s meeting with the farmers comes in the wake of a hunger strike by the farmers to pressure the Chief Executive to complete the land distribution program before the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program with Extension and Reform expires in 2014.

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TAGS: agrarian reform, Agriculture, Benigno Aquino III, Farmers, Government, Land Reform, News, Politics
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