MANILA — Domingo Panganiban is returning to the Department of Agriculture as an undersecretary under the administration of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.
Panganiban was formally sworn into his new post by Marcos Jr. at the Malacañang Palace on Friday, August 12.
"Isang karangalan ang makatrabaho ang ating mga dalubhasa sa pagtugon sa mga pangangailangan ng ating bayan lalo na sa sektor ng agrikultura," Marcos said of Panganiban in his Facebook post on Monday.
(It is an honor to work with experts to address our country's needs, especially in the agriculture sector.)
Panganiban has served the agriculture sector in varying capacity since the administration of the late president Ferdinand Marcos Sr. and is known as the proponent of the Masagana 99 Rice Program.
The Masagana 99 sought to increase rice production in the country by giving farmers high-yielding rice varieties and low-cost pesticides through loans.
Some argued that the controversial agriculture program was a success. But the policy was discontinued as it left farmers in deeper debt.
Former Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III said the program also "bankrupted" around 800 banks.
Some farmers also oppose the revival of the program.
Panganiban earned his Bachelor of Science in Agriculture degree from the University of the Philippines in Los Baños, Laguna.
Prior to Panganiban's appointment, Marcos Jr. served as agriculture secretary in a concurrent capacity.
"Marami tayong mga kailangan palitan. Marami tayong mga, medyo mga iba't ibang opisina na hindi na masyadong nagagamit o kailangan nang i-retool para sa post-pandemic, dahil nga iba na yung ating ginagawa ngayon," Marcos said of the agriculture agency.
(We need to change many things. There are offices that are no longer useful, or need retooling post-pandemic, since things are being done differently now.)
More details to follow.