SINAG tells PH gov’t: farmers are frontliners too!
The Samahang Industriya ng Agrikultura (SINAG) has called on authorities to reiterate the directive of the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Disease (IATF-EID) to treat the country’s farmers, fishers and raisers as frontliners amid the COVID19 pandemic.
“We have received reports that farmers are barred from reaching their farms simply because they are not residents of the barangays where their farms or food production areas are located,” said SINAG Chair Rosendo So.
“Ang tirahan ng mga magsasaka o manggagawang bukid ay kalimitan nasa ibang Barangay o karatig na Munisipyo. Iba ang magiging hawak nilang quarantine pass o barangay ID at hindi sa lugar ng kanilang sinasaka. The harvest season (for palay) is upon us; we are worried if they cannot harvest if they are not allowed at the checkpoints to go to their farms,” he added.
SINAG added that there is much production at this time in our piggeries, chicken, aquaculture and vegetable farms.
“But if we stop farmers from producing, what will happen to all of us? Dapat tuloy-tuloy ang food production sa farms. Mauubusan tayo ng pagkain kapag wala nang nagsaka,” So further said.
According to So, at this time of a global health pandemic, there must already be a realization from everyone that food self-sufficiency is the only way to feed our own people.
“We must only rely on our own capacity and capability to put food on our dining tables,” So said.