DLNR chief to go after illegal farmers

ILLEGAL farming is one of the issues that the new secretary of the Department of Lands and Natural Resources will look into.

In an interview on Monday, DLNR chief Anthony T. Benavente said he will not tolerate illegal farming activities in the commonwealth.

“I’ve received reports that there are some Chinese working or paying farmers to farm for them in Kagman to make sure they have produce in their stores,” he added.

He said some Chinese store owners are reportedly paying lot owners on a monthly basis.

Newly sworn-in Department of Lands and Natural Resources Secretary Anthony T. Benavente poses with Gov. Ralph D.L.G. Torres, Lt. Gov. Victor B. Hocog and other DLNR officials. Photo by Cherrie Anne E. Villahermosa

“That’s not right — it’s illegal farming and I will not allow that. We will put a stop to it.”

Benavente thanked the Senate for confirming his nomination last week. He said the senators asked him to look into the illegal farming issue and training for quarantine officers.

“We should provide more training opportunities for the officers, including those on Rota and Tinian. That’s very important, and I will look into that and make sure that it will happen,” Benavente said.

He also plans to hire additional staff to enforce regulations.

Source: Marianas Variety :

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