Duterte wants retiring general to lead NFA

By: Inquirer.net September 16,2018 - 08:11 PM


PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte wants Lt. Gen. Rolando Joselito Bautista to lead the National Food Authority (NFA), following the exit of its former chief Jason Aquino.
“Pwede ka muna sa NFA siguro, to rationalize the idiotic… para maplano, make it structura (Maybe you can be assigned at the NFA..to plan, set up structures),” Duterte said during a situation briefing on the effects of Typhoon “Ompong” at the Cagayan Provincial Capitol in Tuguegarao City on Sunday.

The topic of new leadership for the NFA was brought up when Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III mentioned the problem surrounding the food council and asked the president if someone can take over NFA for the meantime to resolve the rice crisis, especially in Region 2.

Duterte then asked Bautista, commanding general of the Philippine Army who is set to retire in October, to lead the council.

The president has announced in the past that he was looking for a new administrator of the NFA, the agency at the heart of the ongoing controversy on the rice supply.

Meanwhile, the Bureau of Customs has released 7,000 bags of smuggled rice, following the directive of Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III’ to donate the contraband to those affected by Typhoon “Ompong” (internationally known as “Mangkhut”).

The BOC Public Information and Assistance Division said the rice donation came from 14 20-footer containers that the country’s second biggest tax-collection agency had earlier confiscated.

The BOC seizes smuggled items, that it, items that enter the country without the correct import duties and other taxes being paid.
Citing information from Deputy Commissioner Edward James A. Dy Buco, the BOC said the deed of donation was signed by Customs Commissioner Isidro S. Lapeña last Friday.

Dominguez also approved the donation on Friday as well.

The BOC is an agency attached to the Department of Finance.

Dominguez had earlier instructed Lapeña to release all confiscated rice, as well as other food items in the BOC’s possession, and donate them to the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

These goods were intended as relief to victims of “Ompong.”

Under the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act, rice and other seized goods – such as food, clothing and medicines – can be donated to the DSWD.

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TAGS: Mangkhut, National Food Authority, Ompong, Philippine Army, President Duterte

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