The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) will continue to distribute rice to poor households as long as the agency receives confiscated smuggled rice seized by authorities acting on the instructions by President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr., a social welfare official said on Saturday.

“Well, depende po sa supply. But then that’s the thrust of the President, it’s the thrust of Secretary Rex Gatchalian na hangga’t mayroon pong nadu-donate sa atin, patuloy po nating ipapasa o ibabahagi din sa ating mga kababayan dahil alam din naman po natin iyong pangangailangan ng mga poor and afflicted natin na mga kababayan,” Social Welfare Assistant Secretary Romel Lopez said in a news forum in Quezon City when asked about the sustainability of DSWD donations.

“And sa atin naman po sa DSWD, immediately ano po ay pinamamahagi din natin ito sa mga poor beneficiaries natin kasi alam naman natin, medyo… iyong bigas ano po, staple food ng ating mga kababayan,” Lopez said.

According to Lopez, the government expects rice distribution campaign to serve as a stern warning to rice smugglers, hoarders and profiteers for them to think twice before engaging in illegal activities, pointing out the commodity that they illegally imported may end up as DSWD donation to poor families.

“Most probably kung ganito po ang inyong gagawin, kayo po ay involved sa smuggling ng bigas, baka po ang ending niyan ay sa donation lamang ho. So that’s why we encourage po iyong ating kababayan to do away with these illegal activities,” Lopez said.

Lopez thanked the Bureau of Customs (BOC) and the Office of the President for providing and facilitating the transfer of smuggled rice to the DSWD for eventual distribution to the beneficiaries of 4Ps.

As mandated by the President, the DSWD has been carrying out rice distribution in various areas.

In General Trias, Cavite on Friday, the DSWD distributed rice to 1,200 beneficiaries, with each of them receiving 25 kilos.

The agency also conducted similar event in Zamboanga Sibugay and Zamboanga City in Mindanao.  | PND

Photo Courtesy by PTVNews