AMAI MANABILANG, LANAO EL SUR (19 January 2023) – It wasn’t uncomplicated trekking the newly opened slippery and muddy road ascending towards the project site of Asia Pacific Precision Agriculture Group (ASPAC AG) at Barangay Sumugot in the Municipality of Amai Manabilang, Lanao del Sur, Thursday.
No less than the Administrator and Chief Executive Officer of Southern Philippines Development Authority (SPDA) Abdulghani ‘Gerry’ Ajul Salapuddin and ASPAC AG President and Chief Executive Officer Wilson T. de Vera braved the enormous challenges posed by the terrain ascending towards the ongoing project for an ocular inspection Thursday, January 19, 2023.
SPDA Administrator Salapuddin narrated how laborious for everyone to reach the area. He said the truck that they hired could not almost pass the deep mud of the newly opened road and they spent long hours on the road. Sometimes, he said, men had to help the machine to move forward by putting some stones on the slippery and muddy road and put spikes on the tire of the truck just to overcome the challenges.
In his post in the social media, Deputy Administrator Munap H. Pacio said “these are the things that the people didn’t see behind the successful story” of Southern Philippines Development Authority (SPDA). A memorandum of understanding (MOU) was inked between SPDA and ASPAC AG on December 11, 2020 which sealed the business partnership between the government-owned and controlled corporation and an American company.
Formally sealing the business partnership on the preparatory phase for the commitment on the development of corn and soybean plantation project within the SPDA proclaimed property in the said municipalities, were SPDA Administrator and Chief Executive Officer Abdulghani ‘Gerry’ Ajul Salapuddin and ASPAC AG President and Chief Executive Officer Wilson T. de Vera.
The following year, on November 16, 2021, SPDA had launched the promising Agro-Industrial Development Program (AIDP) in the Municipalities of Wao and Amai Manabilang (formerly Bumbaran), this province, which signaled a promising future of the Authority’s 25,000 hectare proclaimed agricultural land in these municipalities. Former Agriculture Secretary Dr. William Dollente Dar was the AIDP launching keynote speaker who represented former President Rodrigo Roa Duterte.
The other SPDA key personnel who manifested courage during this project ocular inspection were Deputy Administrator Munap H. Pacio, Operations Manager Cristy B. Dagala, Special Assistant to the Administrator & Internal Control Unit Chief Norhan A. Salih, OIC Finance Manager Ersan I. Warad, and some members of the technical team. Asia Pacific Precision Agriculture Group (ASPAC AG) Vice President for Mindanao Edward ‘Boy’ dela Fuente was also with the group. (Celestino B. Siglos, Ed.D.)