Unloading of 800K bags of rice in Subic hampered due to bad weather
Some 800,000 bags of imported government-subsidized rice have remained unloaded at the Subic Bay due to weather disturbances, the National Food Authority (NFA) said Tuesday.
NFA spokesman Rex Estoperez in an inteview by DZMM said the government should have done the importation of rice during the summer months.
“Ito nga ang ating problema, ang ating pag-import eh masyadong late na at tag-ulan na. Sana ‘yung summer months tayo para 24 hours ang ating unloading,” he said.
But he said their people in Subic have been trying to fast-track the unloading of the sacks of rice whenever the weather condition improves.
The rice from Subic would be distributed in areas affected by flooding due to monsoon rains.
Estoperez assured that there is no problem in the stocks of NFA rice, either for market distribution or for relief operations.
Early this year, NFA failed to sell rice after its reserve had dwindled due to failure to immediately import.
There was a conflicting policy between the NFA Council then headed by Cabinet Secretary Leoncio Evasco Jr. and that of NFA Administrator Jason Aquino.
According to Evasco, there was no need to import rice because of sufficient commercial rice, while Aquino pushed for the government’s importation.
To resolve the issue, President Rodrigo Duterte intervened and ordered the importation of rice. Evasco was later removed as the chairman of the NFA Council.
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