MAGALANG -- The local government here announced on Sunday, August 13, that the town is free from the Avian Influenza or Bird Flu Virus which has infected thousands of fowls in San Luis town.
Mayor Malu Paras-Lacson together with Vice Mayor Norman Lacson and the Sanggunian Bayan members met with poultry vendors and owners of layers and broilers to come up with precautionary measures to assure that the Bird Flu virus will not reach the poultry industry.
"Magalang is Avian Virus Free. We see this as an opportunity to us to send a message that in our town is not affected by the Bird Flu but this those not mean we are not doing anything, as a matter of fact we have already put up a monitoring team to assess and inspect the farms," Mayor Lacson said.
She added that a team composed of the Municipal Health Office (MHO), Department of Agriculture (DA) and Philippine National Police (PNP) are currently monitoring 20 poultry vendors, 28 layers and 31 broiler farms to assure that they are free from the virus.
"We are concern about the economic aspect as well as the health aspect of our people who own and work in this type of industry. Of course the people who sell and buy this poultry," Lacson said.
The lady mayor said that he urged the all industry players to cooperate with authorities, maintain transparency and report sick fowls to the LGU's monitoring team.
" We have asked the Poultry and egg layers here to submit an affidavit coming from the veterinarian certifying that their fowls are not infected by the Bird Flu, of course we will also be inspecting their farms that is why in requesting them to allow the monitoring team to do their job," Lacson said.
The monitoring team will also check chicken meat and eggs being sold in the public market and transported outside the town.
"Magalang is one of the major producers of eggs not only in Pampanga but also ouside of the province that is why we need to assure our produce are not affected by the bird flu virus," Lacson said.
She added that they have also requested an animal quarantine checkpoint to be set up in entry and exit points of the town to assure that infected fowls will not enter Magalang.
"As we say an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure. That is why we are doing everything we can to assure that we will remain Avian Flu Free," Lacson said.
Lacson urged the poultry and egg layer industry to report any unusual behavior of their fowls which includes gaming cocks, pigeons, quails, ducks and even exotic birds so they can be checked by the municipal veterinarian and health officials.
The Avian Flu Virus has reportedly affected 16 towns in Pampanga which has been placed under a State of Calamity.
The incident has caused an economic scare as chicken price has dropped to more than 40 percent since the news of the Avian Influenza Virus was reported. (Chris Navarro)