Duterte orders NFA to buy rice of Filipino farmers
President Rodrigo Duterte has put his foot down on on the controversy over the proposal to import rice in the middle of this year’s harvest period.
In a pre-departure briefing last Monday, Duterte said he has ordered National Food Authority Administrator Jason Aquino to start buying rice harvest of farmers to boost the country’s buffer stock.
“I am ordering the — si Jason Aquino sa NFA, kung may pera ka, you start buying. You buy the rice of the local producers if you really want a buffer. Unahin mo muna ‘yang atin, pabawiin mo ang mga farmers, then if there is a shortfall, you might decide to import,” said Duterte.
“In the meantime, when there is — may surplus, huwag ninyong kumpentisayahan ang mga farmers natin. Is that not crazy? Patayin mo ‘yung farmers dito?” he added.
Duterte recently visited Nueva Ecija where he said the rice harvest was “good or three times the original output.”
“Bakit ka mag-import ngayon ng bigas, i-compete mo ‘yung hindi… Patay ang farmers who would buy their — ? Eh kung may pera si Jason Aquino, you buy the rice of the local planters. That is the proper way of governing a nation,” Duterte said.
Duterte recently fired Malacanang Undersecretary Maia Valdez for usurping the power of Aquino and railroading the extension period for rice imports through private traders under the Minimum Access Volume.