Senator Joel Villanueva lauded Malacanang’s declaration of a state of calamity for the entire nation over the ravaging effects of the African Swine Fever, adding that the Department of Agriculture should now focus on concrete measures to eradicate the disease that has severely crippled the local hog industry.
“Now the real work begins. This is the declaration of war against ASF that pig farmers have long been waiting for. Recognizing that there is a calamity is one thing, ending it is another,” Villanueva, chair of the Senate labor committee, said.
“Recognizing that there is a calamity is one thing, ending it is another.”
“Hopefully, this declaration will prompt the government to move as one, marshal all resources available, and work on a timetable that results in quick victory,” the veteran legislator added.
The Palace, through Proclamation No. 1143, placed the country under a state of calamity, citing the billions worth of losses suffered by the industry due to the ASF.
The proclamation also gave government agencies a wide latitude to utilize funds to contain the outbreak.
The seasoned lawmaker called on the DA and other government agencies to come up with a “game plan” on how they intend to carry out the objectives or “spirit” of the proclamation, which not only involves the eradication of the ASF, but also the rehabilitation of the local hog industry.
“If the local hog industry were a patient in the ICU, it is then the duty of the DA to display the patient’s chart.”
“The DA should now regularly update the public on what interventions are being done pursuant to this declaration. If the local hog industry were a patient in the ICU, it is then the duty of the DA to display the patient’s chart so the country would know if progress is being made and recovery is underway,” Villanueva explained.
“Ang deklarasyon ay isang mainam na reseta laban sa isang karamdaman. Ang mahalaga ay ipatupad kung ano ang nasa reseta upang agarang gumaling ang maysakit,” Villanueva said.