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Go appeals to meat traders: ‘Wag na po kayong mag-pork holiday

Bong Go & Duterte

FOLLOWING the price ceiling imposed on pork and chicken products for two month in Metro Manila, Senator Christopher “Bong” Go urged traders to consider the welfare of ordinary Filipino consumers and discouraged them from pursuing a ‘pork holiday’.

Huwag na po muna kayong mag-pork holiday dahil ang mahihirapan po dito, kapag tumaas ang presyo ng pork at chicken, ay ‘yung mga ordinaryong Pilipino po na ‘isang kahig, isang tuka’,” Go said during an interview after he personally led the distribution of assistance to a thousand typhoon victims in Rodriguez, Rizal.

Kung maaari lang po ay isaalang-alang muna natin ‘yung kabuhayan po ng mga ordinaryong mamamayan natin,” he added.

Encouraging them to comply with the price ceiling, Go assured them that the government is constantly recalibrating its policies to balance the interests of all sectors affected, particularly traders and consumers.

Matapos po pinirmahan ni Pangulong Duterte ‘yung dalawang buwang price ceiling, dapat ay sundin nila ito. Pinag-aaralan naman po ng gobyerno ang lahat at binabalanse,’ said Go.

And, in fact, nabalitaan ko po sa isang Cabinet meeting ay inatasan na po ng ating mahal na Pangulo ang Department of Agriculture at ang Department of Trade and Industry na magkaroon po ng surveillance team… titingnan kung sumusunod ba sila dito sa Executive Order,” he added.

President Rodrigo Duterte recently issued Executive Order No. 124 which seeks to curb the rising prices of pork and chicken products by imposing a price ceiling.

The imposition of price ceiling seeks to ease the adverse impacts of COVID-19 by ensuring that pork and chicken remain affordable and accessible to the public and prevent unwarranted price manipulation.

As stated in the EO, the price ceiling will take effect and remain in full force for 60 days, unless extended by President Duterte upon the recommendation of the DA.

Under circumstances of unreasonable increase in the prices of basic necessities or prime commodities, Section 7 of Republic Act No. 7581 or the Price Act mandates the President, upon the recommendation of an implementing agency, such as the DA, to impose a price ceiling over such goods.

Committed to ensure food security, Senator Go appealed to the concerned agencies and the private sector to help each other protect the public from widespread hunger. “Intindihin po natin na maraming nawalan din ng kabuhayan at lahat ‘yan ay may mga pamilyang pinapakain. Huwag natin hayaan na may magugutom.”

Kaya ako umaapela sa lahat ng concerned agencies, lalo na ang DA at DTI, pati rin ang pribadong sektor, tulad ng mga traders ng pork, na magtulungan po tayo,” he added.

Meanwhile, Go is also seeking long-term solutions towards food security, such as continued monitoring of food prices and boosting local production to stabilize prices in the country.

Bilang mambabatas, patuloy ang panawagan ko sa DA na maglatag ng long-term solutions towards food security. Kasama na dito ang pag-stabilize ng supply ng baboy sa buong bansa. Paigtingin rin lalo ng DA, DTI, at iba pang ahensya ang kanilang price monitoring at surveillance upang masigurong walang nananamantala at sumusunod dapat lahat sa kautusang temporary price ceiling,” said Go.

Go also asked DA if it can provide subsidies or other interventions, such as covering transportation costs to alleviate the concerns of traders and hog raisers.

Lahat naman po dito ay naghihirap… binabalanse naman po ng ating gobyerno ang lahat, between traders, consumers, at itong mga hog raisers,” Go pointed out.

At umaapela po ako sa ating Department of Agriculture na kung maaari po ay i-subsidize ninyo. If not subsidize, tulungan ninyo po sa transportasyon para mabawasan po ‘yung cost ng transportation papunta rito sa Metro Manila, para naman po kumita ang ating mga supplier ng pork,” he proposed.

He, then, asked all parties to help each other cope with the current situation. The continuing bayanihan efforts, he said, is aimed towards unburdening the poor and most vulnerable sectors through a whole-of-nation approach that involves the commitment of both the government and the private sector.

Sa ngayon naman, talagang dapat lahat ay magsasakripisyo dahil hirap po ang taumbayan. Alang-alang na lang po sa mga kababayan nating naghihirap,” Go said.

Magtulungan na lang po tayo, sa mga consumers, sa mga producers, itong sa mga suppliers po, itong mga hog raisers, balansehin po natin ang lahat para sa ikabubuti ng bawat Pilipino,” he ended.