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NFA-Bicol excludes Albay in gov't rice distribution

Tristeza

LEGAZPI CITY -- Only the poorest of the poor in five out of six provinces in Bicol will continue to receive allocation of government rice starting in September this year, an official of the National Food Authority (NFA) said on Thursday.

In an interview, NFA regional director Henry Tristeza said based on a memorandum they received from their central office, Albay will not be among the provinces where the poor would be allowed to buy NFA rice in selected markets and distributors after August 31.

"The identified locations in Bicol are Camarines Sur, Camarines Norte, Sorsogon, Masbate and Catanduanes," he said.

Asked why Albay is not included, Tristeza said, "Albay province is not included based on the recommendation submitted by the Department of Social Welfare and Development Office (DSWD) regional office and through the surveys conducted by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) on the numbers of the poorest of the poor families".

The NFA official said he already submitted on Tuesday to their central office a letter requesting to also allocate NFA rice to some island villages and coastal areas in Albay that they visited, where there are also poverty-stricken families.

Tristeza said the DSWD has identified the areas in the five provinces that will be given priority.

As to the number and identity of the poorest families, the NFA is still coordinating with the local social welfare development officers, he said. (PNA)
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