Capitol asks MCIAA to cooperate, strictly implement 100-day ban on pork

By: Rosalie O. Abatayo August 29,2019 - 09:04 PM

Cebu Governor Gwendolyn Garcia discusses issues including measures against the African Swine Fever during the Mactan Cebu International Airport Authority board meeting on August 29 at the MCIAA board room. | Enrique Bejar

CEBU CITY, Philippines —”If we err, let us err on the side of caution.”

Cebu Governor Gwendolyn Garcia said the Cebu Provincial Government was not taking chances in protecting its P10-billion hog industry.

In a meeting with the Mactan Cebu International Airport Authority (MCIAA) Board of Directors on Thursday, August 29, Garcia asked the body for cooperation in the stricter policies that the province imposed regarding the entry of pork and pork-related products.

Garcia recently issued a 100-day ban on the entry of pork and pork-related products from all provinces except with all due clearance from the National Meat Inspection Service (NMIS).

Read more: Garcia: 100-day ban on entry of live pigs, other pork products remain

This complements the advisory of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) which bans the entry of swine from 20 countries due to the African Swine Fever.

Despite the clarification of Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol that the recent hog deaths in Rizal province were not caused by ASF, Garcia said the province would not let off with its measures to protect the province’s hog industry.

“Aside from these 20 banned countries, there was a recent case of reported swine deaths in a province in Luzon. There were suspicions that they were stricken by ASF. About two or three days ago, the Agriculture Secretary said it was not ASF but would not say what it was so as not to cause panic,” said Garcia during the board meeting.

“Not knowing what it was should increase our vigilance. Strictly regulate the pork and pork-related products,” she added.

Garcia asked the MCIAA to notify the airlines that service the MCIA to inform their passengers of the strict measures that the province were taking on the entry of meat.

“It is to remind the passengers nga didto pa lang sa ilang airport of origin nga idispose na lang ang ilang mga pork products kay Cebu is implementing very strict controls on the entry of pork and pork-related products,” Garcia said.

(It is to remind the passengers that even from their airport of origin they should dispose of their pork products because Cebu is implementing very strict controls on the entry of pork and pork-related products.)

MCIAA Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Lawyer Steve Dicdican said they would respond to the governor’s request and notify their member-airlines.

Dicdican also said that since the ASF broke out abroad in 2018, MCIAA had also placed guidelines to prevent the entry of ASF here./dbs

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TAGS: African swine Fever, African Swine Flu, Cebu‬, Dicdican, Governor Gwendolyn Garcia, HOG, International Airport Authority, Mactan, MCIA, MCIAA, National Meat Inspection Service, pork, pork-related products, Swine death

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