As the Department of Agriculture (DA) embarks on implementing various initiatives under the Plant, Plant, Plant program — particularly short-gestating projects that will provide immediate food and incomes to Filipino households — Agriculture Secretary William Dar led all DA officials and staff to pledge good governance and zero corruption, during its weekly national management committee (ManCom) meeting.
“Let us all forge a covenant by morally and conscientiously practicing good governance with the highest integrity, and no tinge of corruption nor delay in the discharge of our solemn duties to the Filipino people, particularly to farmers, fishers, and agripreneurs,” Dar said.
“I, therefore, challenge everyone here at the DA – the officials and rank-and-file employees – to serve the Filipino people with utmost integrity coupled with competence,” the agriculture chief added.
“A public office is a public trust.”
“We must strive to erase the old-stricken image of a corrupt- driven department. Corruption is a disease, everybody needs to work together to curtail such a bad reputation. A public office is a public trust,” the agriculture head stressed.
The DA ManCom agreed in unison to support the “Good Governance, No to Corruption” advocacy and promoting the hashtag #NoToCorruptionatDA on ManCom video conference chatbox.
“I can only usher you toward this path, but our people need your full commitment, especially now that we are surrounded by uncertainties due to COVID-19. The least we could do is to ensure them that we are dedicated and honest servants toward achieving food security,” he said.
The DA has earlier institutionalized an Agriculture Dialogue Information Network Group (ADING) to ensure efficient, effective, and graft-free use of limited public funds.
“ADING aims to monitor and evaluate if DA agri-fishery policies, programs, and projects on the ground are effectively and cost-efficiently implemented, without any shade of graft and corruption,” Dar said.
“This is our response to President Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s call for transparency and integrity in all government offices.”
“This is our response to President Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s call for transparency and integrity in all government offices. We, at the DA, will live up to this,” he added.
Also, Dar instructed the creation of a DA infrastructure audit team, under the supervision of undersecretary Zamzamin Ampatuan.
The team will review and evaluate existing, non-operational, and planned agri-fishery infrastructure projects and facilities, and come up with respective recommendations, taking into account cost-efficiency, refurbishment, and relevance to the needs of the times.