PROVINCIAL Governor Jose Ma. Zubiri Jr. on Friday afternoon, March 27, lifted the implementation of the Executive Order (EO) No. 18 which prohibits the shipment of rice outside Bukidnon.
Earlier, Zubiri issued an order prohibiting all rice producers, traders, and suppliers of Bukidnon from selling and/or delivering rice grains outside the province.
The EO 18 was created following the Provincial Government’s desire to distribute 100,000 bags of rice to its constituents to prevent their people to suffer from hunger.
According to the said EO, the province has purchased 40,000 bags of rice and in need of additional 60,000 bags.
Several rice suppliers and traders were selling their products and merchandise outside Bukidnon, depleting the supply of the province, the EO stated.
After the executive order was made public, Zubiri received flak online for being “greedy” amid the Covid-19 threat.
Others worry that Zubiri’s order might result to increased price of rice which will lead to panic buying.
National Economic and Development Authority in Northern Mindanao director Mylah Faye Cariño said there must be equitable allocation in times of crisis.
“Bukidnon is a net exporter, meaning they produce rice more than they need,” Cariño said.
Cagayan de Oro City Mayor Oscar Moreno, for his part, said he understands Zubiri’s action, adding that it is “normal” during the current health emergency situation.
“These are very difficult times and of course naay ga-vary ang mga panan-aw sa matag-usa and kami mga leaders are no exception,” Moreno, during the regular press conference on coronavirus disease on Friday, said.
“And there may be difference in style, in approaches, protection, and all that. Ako, gasabot na lang ko ni Governor Zubiri... ako lang siguro, maniguro lang sad sya nga dili mahutdan ang ilang stock. That’s normal,” he added.
(These are very difficult times and of course, perspectives vary in each of us and leaders are no exception. There might be difference in approaches, but he might just making sure, they will not be running out of stock.)