Villar will ask Duterte what he wants to strengthen coco bill: I want to be enlightened

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Senator Cynthia Villar is disappointed that President Rodrigo R.Duterte has vetoed her pt bill strengthening the Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA).

“It is unfortunate that the President did not sign the bill strengthening the Philippine Coconut Authority, which will be tasked to implement programs for the development of the coconut industry,” said Villar.

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said the President vetoed the consolidated version Senate Bill 1976 and House Bill 8852 — An Act to Further Strengthen the Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA) – because he felt the safeguards were not enough “to protect the taxpayers’ money and shield the levy funds from irregular and unlawful use, as well as guarantee its proper management.”

But Villar said she was not “discouraged” and she was optimistic that the 3.5 million coconut farmers ould eventually benefit from them coconut levy funds.

“In the coming days, I hope to be enlightened more on why the President believes the measure lacked ‘vital safeguards’ and will work with him to improve this bill,” she said.

Under the proposed measure, the reconstituted and strengthened PCA will handle P100-billion fund for coco levy.

The reconstituted PCA gives greater representation of farmers with six seats (two each from Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao) in the 11-member PCA Board.

Other members will be composed of a representative from the PCA, the Department of Finance, the Department of Agriculture, the Department of Budget and Management, and one coconut industry stakeholder. (With a report from PNA)