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ASF task force to start imposing penalties

BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN

A month after its massive information drive against banning the entry of live pigs and pork-related products to Negros Occidental, due to the threat of African Swine Fever (ASF) to the P6 billion hog industry, Provincial Veterinarian Dr. Placeda Lemana yesterday said that they will start implementing penalties for violators.

For the period from November 7 to 13, Lemana reported that 422.55 kilos of pork meat and its related products, with a market value of P167,671, was seized in various ports in Negros Occidental.  Bulk of the seizures were made at the BREDCO and Banago ports in Bacolod City, and mostly originated from Iloilo.

ASF cases have been detected in five towns of Iloilo.

As stated in the ASF ordinances of the province, the penalties for violators range from P1,000 to P5,000, as well as imprisonment of six months to one year.

However, the penalties for those arrested in Bacolod City is much higher at P2,000 for the first offense, P3,000 for the second offense and P5,000 for the third offense, Lemana said.

We now have the reason to implement the penalties, a month after the conduct of massive information drive on ASF, she added.

The Philippine National Police and its Maritime Command, as well as the Philippine Coast Guard, are augmenting the ASF task forces in guarding ports and coastal areas of the province from the entry of ASF.*

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