‘Pandaraya’: Bongbong Marcos describes agri smugglers' insatiable greed, intricate schemes | Inquirer News

‘Pandaraya’: Bongbong Marcos describes agri smugglers’ insatiable greed, intricate schemes

/ 04:39 PM July 24, 2023

MANILA, Philippines — President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. vowed to go after agricultural smugglers and hoarders, labeling them as cheaters who take advantage of farmers and consumers.

During his State of the Nation Address (Sona) on Monday, Marcos discussed the topic of smuggling, identifying it as a factor in the rise of prices of basic commodities and goods.


The Chief Executive said the government is chasing smugglers, and it intends to put them in prison.


“Isa sa mga dahilan ng pagtaas ng presyo ay ang mga smuggler, mga hoarder, at mga nagmamanipula ng presyo ng produktong agrikultura,” he said.

(One of the reasons why prices of goods are high is because of smugglers, hoarders, and manipulators of agricultural goods prices.)

“Hinahabol at inahahabla natin sila. Sadyang hindi maganda ang kanilang gawain at hindi rin ito tugma sa ating magandang layunin,” he emphasized.

(We are going after them. Their actions aren’t beneficial or in line with our goals.)

“Pandaraya ang kanilang ginagawa. Napapahamak, hindi lamang ang mga magsasaka, kundi tayo rin na mamimimili, kaya hindi natin papayagan ang ganitong kalakaran,” he stressed.

(They are cheating. They are jeopardizing not only farmers but also us consumers, and that’s why we won’t allow this system.)


President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. delivers 2nd Sona (Screenshot from RTVM)

Marcos also warned sternly that the smugglers’ days are nearly over.

“Bilang na ang mga araw ng mga smuggler at hoarder na yan,” he said.

(The days of these smugglers and hoarders are nearly over.)

Several lawmakers of the 19th Congress previously blamed agricultural smuggling as the cause of the high prices of food products during the latter part of 2022.

At one point, onion prices skyrocketed to around P500 to P700 per kilogram, far from the usual P80 to P200 per kilogram.

According to Marikina 2nd District Representative Stella Quimbo, the hearings done by the House Committee on Agriculture and food showed that onion cartels can manipulate prices by creating a fake shortage of cold storage facilities needed to keep onions fresh.

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