Laws that will appoint Piñol as chairperson of NIA, NFA still pending
The two laws designating Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol as the chairperson of the governing board of the National Food Authority (NFA) and National Irrigation Administration (NIA) are still pending in the senate.
The bills were both filed by Senator Ralph Recto.
Recto said the bills seek to “correct the current composition” of the NIA and NFA governing board by mandating the Secretary of Agriculture to sit as its ex-officio chairperson to “ensure the coordination and harmonization of programs and policies to the agriculture industry’s overall strategic development”.
“In view of the foregoing, the immediate passage of this bill is earnestly sought,” Recto said.
In 2014, an Executive Order was signed transferring NFA, NIA, Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA), and Fertilizer and Pesticide Authority (FPA) to the Office of the President.
Furthermore, a memorandum order was signed providing oversight responsibilities over the agencies to the Presidential Assistant for Food Security and Agriculture Modernization (OPAFSAM).
Pursuant to an EO signed in 2016, NFA, together with 11 other agencies from OPAFSAM, were subsequently transferred to the Office of the Cabinet Secretary.
Piñol, who back in 2016 wanted NIA along with the NFA, PCA, FPA to be reintegrated back to the DA, said that there was “absolutely no sense in separating these agencies from the DA”.
What is worse is that the Secretary of Agriculture is not even part of the current NIA and NFA governing board, he added.