The nationwide nomination and selection process for the subsistence farmers’ sector representative in the Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation (PCIC) Board of Directors is now underway.

This followed the signing and issuance of the selection guidelines by Agriculture Secretary William D. Dar on 18 November 2021.   The Department of Agriculture (DA), whose head is the vice chairperson of the PCIC Board,  has been tapped to lead and manage the process. 

The Philippine Council for Agriculture and Fisheries (PCAF), an attached agency of the DA, has been tasked to be the lead agency that will operationalize and oversee the process.  

Agrarian reform beneficiary organizations and farmer cooperatives and associations that have been active in the last three years are highly encouraged to nominate their representatives.

The DA’s memorandum circular on the subject prescribes a tiered process that starts at the provincial level and goes up to the regional and national levels.

The provincial Agricultural and Fishery Councils (AFCs) will conduct the nomination and election process at the provincial level, with assistance from the DA and PCIC regional offices. Then, a regional representative will be chosen from provincial representatives. This will be done by the regional AFCs, again with assistance from the DA and PCIC regional offices. The regional representatives will be screened by the PCAF, through the National Banner and other Priority Program Committees and in coordination with the PCIC.  From this, PCAF will come up with the top three nominees to be submitted to the PCIC.  It will be the president of the Philippines who will finally select and appoint the farmer representative to the PCIC board.

Apart from being a Filipino citizen, nominees for the farmer representative position should have been depending on farming for subsistence; cultivates not more than five hectares; duly listed in the Registry System for Basic Sectors in Agriculture and/or included in the list of farmers insured with PCIC; nominated/endorsed by a duly registered agrarian reform beneficiary organization or farmers’ cooperative and association; and has considerable experience and reputable track record in promoting subsistence farmer’s interest and welfare and in articulating their sentiments, issues or concerns.

The selection of a new farmer representative is a result of Executive Order 148 signed by President Rodrigo Duterte transferring the supervision of the PCIC from the DA to the Department of Finance. 

The EO changed farmer representation in the PCIC Board from three farmer representatives (one each from Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao) to a lone, national representative.