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Surprise inspections conducted on grain warehouses
Elvira Obana, NFA provincial manager in Bulacan, said the warehouses were managed by Faerdig General Merchandise, LOM Marketing, Paracao General Merchandise, Calamba Rice Grower Multi-Purpose Coop., First Asia Agri-Industrial Resource Corp., Marilao General Merchandise, Ongeyesee Trading Corp. and Lambakin Agricultural Marketing Coop.
Michael Varcas/File

Surprise inspections conducted on grain warehouses

Ramon Efren Lazaro (The Philippine Star) - September 2, 2018 - 12:00am

MALOLOS CITY , Philippines — Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol and National Food Authority (NFA) administrator Jason Aquino conducted surprise inspections at eight NFA licensed grain warehouses in Marilao town in Bulacan Friday night.

Elvira Obana, NFA provincial manager in Bulacan, said the warehouses were managed by Faerdig General Merchandise, LOM Marketing, Paracao General Merchandise, Calamba Rice Grower Multi-Purpose Coop., First Asia Agri-Industrial Resource Corp., Marilao General Merchandise, Ongeyesee Trading Corp. and Lambakin Agricultural Marketing Coop.

The warehouses contained below normal rice stocks, consisting mostly of the malagkit (glutinous) variety, Obana told The STAR.

“We have been doing inspections of grains business establishments on a regular basis. Our enforcers have been apprehending and penalizing violators for various offenses,” Aquino said.

Meanwhile, it’s up to President Duterte whether or not he would dismiss NFA officials.

Sen. Cynthia Villar, who spoke at the Food Security and Government Interventions in Agriculture at the 27th Visayas Area Business Conference and Expo in Bacolod City Friday, noted that the NFA officials serve at the pleasure of the President.

“Hopefully, in the coming months they can see the problem they (have caused) and they will solve (it),” she added.

Villar also urged the Department of Agriculture and Department of Trade and Industry to impose a price ceiling on rice at P40 a kilo, adding that if there is a limit traders will lower prices.

As this developed, Associated Labor Unions-Trade Union Congress of the Philippines spokesman Alan Tanjusay yesterday lamented the soaring cost of living in the country.

“What can a worker buy for him and for his family nowadays with the value of his minimum pay of P200 a day? Without government and employers’ interventions, this amount will go down further next month,” he added.

For his part, Sen. Panfilo Lacson called on President Duterte to start shifting his focus from the war on drugs to the economy, particularly in addressing inflation.

“He could leave the problem of drugs with the police. This is already mechanical to them. They all know the President is very angry when it comes to illegal drugs,” Lacson said over dwIZ.

Sen. Joseph Victor Ejercito echoed the sentiment of Lacson, saying the President should take a hands-on approach in addressing the economic issues.

“I think it’s about time (the President steps in). We cannot afford to leave the economy to the economic managers because this affects all Filipinos,” Ejercito said. – With Gilbert Bayoran, Sheila Crisostomo, Marvin Sy

EMMANUEL PIñOL NATIONAL FOOD AUTHORITY WAREHOUSES
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