Pangilinan: With Evasco out as NFA Council chair, Pinoys lose
Senator Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan lamented the removal of Leoncio Evasco as head of the National Food Authority (NFA) Council as he questioned the sincerity of the current administration’s drive against corruption.
Pangilinan, who headed the NFA Council under the previous administration, said in a statement on Tuesday that Filipinos are the ones to lose as Evasco, whom he describes as a “clean official,” had a track record of going after corrupt NFA officials.
“Bakit yung may track record na malinis at nagpapaimbestiga ng mga iligal na gawain sa NFA ang tinaggal habang ang mga sangkot sa kurakot ang kinampihan,” (Why remove the person with a clean track record, who initiated an investigation regarding the illegal activities inside NFA, and side with the people accused of corruption?) Pangilinan said.
Pangilinan’s reaction came after Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque announced Evasco’s removal and the transfer of the NFA, the Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA), and the Fertilizer and Pesticides Authority (FPA) as attached agencies of the Department of Agriculture. With the transfer of the NFA, the NFA administrator loses his cabinet portfolio, Pangilinan said.
“Sa ganitong sitwasyon lalo lang mananatiling mismanaged ang NFA at supply ng bigas ng bansa, at patuloy na tataas ang presyo ng bigas na magiging sanhi ng gutom lalo na sa mahihirap nating mga kababayan,” (In this situation, NFA and the rice supply will still be mismanaged and prices will continue to rise which will cause hunger among poor Filipinos) the senator added.
Evasco and other officials inside the NFA have been at a crossroads in terms of managing the country’s dwindling rice supply. He denied accusations that the agency was coming up with a fake rice crisis, claiming that it was just to cast doubts on his name and on the NFA Council. /muf