NFA vows to continue working amid accusations of inefficiency
The National Food Authority (NFA) management has lamented the collective blame hurled against the agency for the current problems on high commercial rice prices and inflation rates.
Despite this, all NFA personnel nationwide have been instructed to continue providing the best service to the people in all corners of the country.
“We have been quietly doing our work. We don’t brag about it. We go out to the field to mingle with local officials, talk to the local folk, feel their pulse, know their problems, and offer solutions rather than empty promises,” NFA administrator Jason Aquino said.
“We are open for scrutiny anytime. Those who want to verify what we had been doing, can check our records, go around the country and ask the people. For the first time in many years, indigenous peoples, small farmers, fisherfolk, island dwellers, the urban poor, those living in resettlement areas – the real marginalized sectors of our society – are happy and thankful that they are now having access to good quality, low-priced NFA rice,” he added.
NFA also said that the rice crisis in Zamboanga, for instance, happened not because of NFA’s inefficiency or incompetence.
The agency said it was due to the significant depletion of commercial rice stocks in the market and the unavailability of commercial rice sources due to the closure of the Malaysian border which led to the sudden price surges.
For the longest time, Zamboanga has relied on smuggled Thai or Vietnamese rice that was being shipped from Malaysia.
From July 23 to August 24, NFA has already allocated a total of 121,500 bags of rice to Zamboanga City which is good to last 23 days based on the city’s 5,340 bags daily consumption requirement.