Reopening of economy to ease PH’s hunger problems — Nograles
MANILA, Philippines — The reopening of economic activity can eventually decrease hunger in the country and help secure enough food for Filipino families, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said Wednesday.
A Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey showed that 16.8 percent or 4.8 million Filipino families have experienced hunger in the previous three months.
The SWS survey also showed there was a dip in terms of families that experienced hunger in Metro Manila, from 23.3 percent in November 2020 down to 14.7 percent in May 2021.
“These positive developments coincide with the resumption of economic activity in the National Capital Region (NCR) as we eased quarantine protocols and more people went back to work,” said Nograles, chairperson of the government’s Zero Hunger Task Force, in a statement.
“We have to replicate this in areas outside Metro Manila in order to address hunger, particularly in Mindanao, where total hunger rose by 4.7 percentage points,” he said.
Even as hunger decreased in the NCR, the SWS survey results showed that Mindanao saw a rise in hunger numbers from 16 percent in November 2020 to 20.7 percent in May 2021.
Nograles also mentioned that the vaccination program in the country would also help in the reopening of the economy. More than 13 million COVID-19 vaccines have so far been administered, with 3.5 million persons now fully vaccinated.
“We’ve already seen this in NCR, and as more of our countrymen get vaccinated in other parts of the country, it will be possible to open the provinces up and allow our kababayan to resume their livelihoods,” Nograles said.
“Kailangan natin magtulungan––ang gobyerno, ang private sector, ang buong sambayanan––para tuloy na tayo makabangon sa pandemya. (We need to help each other — the government, the private sector, the whole community in order to rise up from the pandemic.) The sooner we beat COVID, the sooner we can make progress to beat hunger,” he added. — Sofia Vertucio, trainee