NFA rice, 4Ps and school’s feed­ing pro­gram

Sun.Star Baguio - - Speakout - Julievense Mi­randa C.

BUY­ING and re­selling of NFA (Na­tional Food Author­ity) rice, 4P’s pro­gram (Pantawid Pam­ilyang Pilipino Pro­gram), Deped’s feed­ing pro­gram are among the prom­i­nent so­cial pro­grams of the gov­ern­ment pur­posely aimed to re­duce poverty and sta­bi­lize in­fla­tion.

This is done to rec­og­nize the role of so­cial jus­tice and so­cial pro­tec­tion. So­cial jus­tice as de­fined by the Supreme Court and taught in school means the equal­iza­tion by the gov­ern­ment of all the eco­nomic and so­cial forces so that jus­tice in its ra­tio­nal mean­ing will be at­tained.

The Na­tional Eco­nomic and De­vel­op­ment Author­ity has de­fined so­cial pro­tec­tion to mean em­brac­ing all poli­cies and pro­grams that strives to lessen poverty and sus­cep­ti­bil­ity to risk and boost the so­cial sta­tus and rights of the marginal­ized by stim­u­lat­ing and pro­tect­ing liveli­hood and em­ploy­ment against haz­ards and sud­den loss of in­come. There is a need how­ever to de­ter­mine the im­pact or ef­fec­tiv­ity of these so­cial pro­grams for de­ci­sion mak­ing pur­poses. Specif­i­cally if these pro­grams will be main­tained or there is a need to im­prove it. As to how these will be im­prove de­pends on fur­ther and deeper re­search stud­ies and if the con­cern gov­ern­ment agen­cies or in­stru­men­tal­i­ties rec­og­nized it.

How­ever, in a re­search pa­per en­ti­tled “Re­form­ing So­cial Pro­tec­tion Pol­icy: Re­spond­ing to the Global Fi­nan­cial Cri­sis and Beyond by Rosario G. Manasan (2011), these so­cial pro­tec­tion pro­grams were pre­sented and an­a­lyze. In a com­par­a­tive table the re­searcher noted that in 2007 NFA rice sub­sidy con­sti­tutes 29 per­cent of to­tal na­tional gov­ern­ment spend­ing and was fur­ther in­crease to 69 per­cent in 2008. This is for non­con­trib­u­tory so­cial pro­grams. Fur­ther­more there was an over­lap in the ob­jec­tives of both 4P’s and the food for the school pro­gram. Some­times both pro­gram op­er­ates in the same geo­graph­i­cal area, so there is re­dun­dancy as to the pro­grams im­pact to the ben­e­fi­cia­ries.

As an anal­y­sis, to at­tain the full pur­pose of buy­ing NFA rice and dis­tribut­ing this to the marginal­ized sec­tor, it would be bet­ter to lessen the im­por­ta­tion of NFA rice. This should be bought by the gov­ern­ment from the lo­cal farm­ers at a time when the sup­ply of lo­cal rice is over­flow­ing. The un­con­trolled im­por­ta­tion de­prives lo­cal farm­ers of the needed in­come. In the 4P’s im­ple­men­ta­tion it is not enough to just dis­trib­ute cash to poor fam­i­lies with­out any ac­tiv­i­ties or ac­tions in re­turn of the cash dis­trib­uted. Ben­e­fi­cia­ries should at least per­form com­mu­nity ser­vice. While in the feed­ing pro­gram, there is a need to re­quire ad­di­tional home­work ac­tiv­i­ties for stu­dent ben­e­fi­cia­ries. In these ways, the gov­ern­ment will not rely merely on giv­ing and giv­ing re­sources with­out the needed re­turn of gov­ern­ment in­vest­ments.

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