Sunday, 22 June 2014

PIA News Dispatch - Monday, June 16, 2014

Rice prices to stabilize in two months, says Palace

Malacanang said on Monday that rice prices are expected to stabilize in the next two months.

Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma, Jr. said that the National Food Authority (NFA) is monitoring the situation.

“Tinututukan ng NFA ang galaw ng presyo ng bigas, at ayon sa kanila, ito ay dulot ng market forces, dahil ito ay low-season ng supply at inaasahan nilang magi-stabilize ito kapag dumating na ‘yung inangkat na bigas mula sa ibang bansa, at inaasahan nilang magi-stabilize ang presyo sa susunod na dalawang buwan,” said Coloma in a press briefing.

Rice prices have reportedly increased by PHP2, bringing the average retail price of well-milled rice to PHP42.19 per kilo, and milled rice to PHP38.93 per kilo.

As for the prices of garlic and ginger, Coloma said the Department of Agriculture and the Department of Trade and Industry are closely watching the movement in their prices.

“Mayroong mga suggested retail prices para sa mga bagay na ito at hindi natin pahihintulutan na maging labis ang pagsingil o walang katuwiran,” he explained.

The price per kilo of garlic has reportedly reached as much as PHP300.

“Dahil nga ang pinag-uusapan dito ay mga prime commodities, masinsing tinututukan ito ng ating pamahalaan para tiyakin na walang magiging pinsala sa kapakanan ng ating mga mamamayan,” said Coloma. PND (ag)

Palace on accounting of foreign aid for Ondoy victims: We are transparent

The Palace said all funds received by the government for the victims of Typhoon Ondoy had been channeled to the National Treasury, and people are welcome to check how the donations had been spent.

“Ang mga pondong ito ay maaaring gastusin nang naaayon lamang sa patakarang itinakda ng batas. Alinsunod sa prinsipyo ng mabuting pamamahala, bukas at hayag ang talaan o record ng pamahalaan hinggil sa paggastos ng ganitong mga pondo,” Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma, Jr. said during Monday’s press briefing.

Coloma was commenting on reports that a group of lawmakers is calling on the administration of President Benigno S. Aquino III to account for the PHP16-billion foreign aid for victims of Typhoon Ondoy.

The group said that although the typhoon struck Metro Manila and nearby provinces in 2009, the bulk of the foreign aid was given in 2010 when President Aquino was already in power.

Coloma said that it is the duty of the Commission on Audit to examine how the funds had been spent.

He further said that the government is one with the group “in their advocacy that there should be transparency of information and accountability of public funds.”

The group is led by Leyte 1st District Congressman Ferdinand Martin Romualdez, whose constituents were affected by Typhoon Yolanda. Romualdez is also the nephew of former First Lady Imelda Marcos. PND (ag)

Palace says government is serious in addressing crimes in the country

Malacanang has assured that the government is working to solve and prevent crimes from happening in the country.

"What I can say is that the President takes a very serious and hands-on attitude when it comes to crime and police matters," Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma, Jr. told reporters during a press briefing on Monday.

Coloma was answering questions on the administration's response to the spate of crimes occurring in the country, including the recent killing of a mayor in Pangasinan and a police major in Quezon City.

"I have been with the President on several occasions and I have actually witnessed him call up a particular officer to inquire about an incident report or to make sure that a serious crime is being handled properly and with utmost urgency," Coloma said.

This is a matter of serious concern that should prompt our law enforcement authorities to boost their crime prevention efforts, he said.

The Palace official also called for intensified public vigilance, saying that effective crime prevention requires the people to cooperate with law enforcers.

"Kinakailangan din siguro ‘yung mas masinop na police intelligence work para masubaybayan ang mga kilos ng mga criminal elements that have been under surveillance," he added.

The public has called for increased police visibility, following recent killings in the country. PND (as)