Pointblank: Truly – A Leader of Note! Worthy of Respect & Praise!
If there is any leader of the sugar industry who has been tried and tested by time, it’s the president of the National Federation of Sugarcane Planters (NFSP), Mr. Enrique “Nene” D. Rojas!
Truly, it’s been so many years since he started to campaign actively for the survival of the sugar industry! Today, he is still fighting for the sugar industry and we can really admire and respect him for his herculean efforts!
Not only for the industry itself but also for its workers and their families.
He not only talks about caring for the children of the sugar workers, but has done something tangible and visible by setting up a vocational school, known as the Negros Sugar Workers’ Foundation Vocational School.
The courses offered in this institution are Computer Servicing Systems, Automotive-Diesel Mechanics, Welding and Electronics.
The school is now being managed by Ric Pueda, former head of TESDA.
As of its last graduation exercises, the school has already produced 6,847 graduates! A vivid testimony of one man’s foresight and concern for the children of sugar workers!
On this score alone, I doubt if anyone can match this accomplishment!
Of course, he did not accomplish this feat single-handed as he had the invaluable help of the late former NFSP president and former Bacolod Congressman Romeo Guanzon, Atty. Plaridel Villadelgado, sugar planter Jimmy Golez, the officers and members of the Federation!
This is only but one of his many accomplishments, which has already withstood the test of time and so many sacrifices on his part.
Another accomplishment which is even more telling and even memorable is his tenacious, relentless and long-term campaign against the entry here of High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS).
Rojas truly believes that the present crisis in the sugar industry can be placed at the doorstep of High Fructose Corn Syrup! That allowing HFCS to openly displace Philippine sugar as a sweetener will lead to the downfall of the industry!
Domestic sugar prices in practically all sugar mills here are between P1,000.00 to P1,200.00 per bag, which is a losing proposition for almost all sugar planters!
The fact that our senate only voted 8-7 against the tax on HFCS is, to my mind does not speak well of some of our senators!
Rojas stated, “we thank Senator Migz Zubiri for his passion and consistency in defending the welfare of the sugar industry,” as published in one of the local papers!
The fact that our industry did not get the unanimous support from the senators only goes to show that perhaps they need more information on this score!*(to be continued)
In the meantime, kudos to Mr. Enrique Rojas!*