FOR jobless, underemployed, low-salaried and hungry people, particularly during national emergencies and other trying times, overpricing, hoarding and profiteering are absolutely a no-no.
Aware of this, the national government, through concerned offices and agencies, wants to ensure food security and eradicate corruption, knowing fully well that grafters torpedo pro-poor programs.
It is public knowledge that corrupt government officials and employees waltz with unscrupulous traders during hard times, making it difficult for the authorities to pin down hoarders and profiteers.
“What’s saddening, disgusting and lamentable is why Filipinos are reeling from food insecurity when in fact the Philippines is a known agricultural county,” according to an aging rice farmer.
“Talagang hindi katanggap-tanggap ito dahil ang daming nakatiwangwang na lupain na iniwan ng mga magsasakang mas ginustong magtrabaho na lang sa labas ng bansa,” the farmer added.
Thus, we commend President Rodrigo Duterte for calling a food security summit to discuss the problems confronting the agriculture sector, including the spike in pork prices and drop in farm gate prices of palay.
Likewise, the summit will discuss ways to develop the agri-fishery sector with the involvement of local government units (LGUs) and industry players, according to Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque.
The summit is part of Duterte’s whole-of-government approach. It aims to develop a National Food Security Plan to achieve our vision of a food-secure Philippines,with prosperous farmers and fishers, he said.
The summit lead agency is the Department of Agriculture (DA) under Secretary William D. Dar.
By holding the food security summit, the government is on track in responding to the problems hounding the agri-fishery sector as the Philippines continues to battle the paralyzing COVID-19 pandemic.