CONSULTATIVE MEETING. Members of civil society organizations from the agriculture sector in Negros Oriental province attend a 'Dagyaw' consultative meeting at a local hotel in Dumaguete City on Wednesday (Nov. 16, 2022). The 2022 Dagyaw Open Government and Town Hall meeting was initiated by the Department of the Interior and Local Government. (Photo by Judy Flores Partlow)

DUMAGUETE CITY – Various concerns and issues related to the agriculture sector took center stage during a provincial town hall meeting held at a local hotel in this capital city on Wednesday.

About 50 civil society organizations (CSOs) were represented in the 2022 Dagyaw Open Government and Town Hall meeting initiated by the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG).

“Dagyaw is a Hiligaynon word which means togetherness and we want to partner with CSOs in the implementation of various programs and projects,” said Farah Gentuya, DILG-Negros Oriental provincial director, in an interview with local media.

Gentuya said the issues and concerns coming from these CSOs will be elevated to the national government so that “these will be the bases for whatever governance we will have”.

With the passage of the Mandanas-Garcia ruling, it is also important for them to know the agencies involved and their functions, as well as be aware of the services already offered by the local government, she noted.

Gentuya said they already had a previous meeting with their civil society partners where four issues were identified, but the most pressing issue was on agriculture.

Some of the issues and concerns raised during the meeting included the construction of farm-to-market roads, subsidies, and food security, among others.

Gentuya said they will collate all these so that concerned agencies can answer them in succeeding town hall meetings, which will also cover other sectors. (PNA)