Iligan traders lose NFA license for hoarding tons of rice

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ILIGAN CITY (November 29)  —- Two traders here  perpetually lost their license to sell rice,   after the  National Food Authority (NFA) and the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) found them hoarding rice in their warehouses last  October while supply was meager.

The inspection was done last October 9,  but the decision was  released Tuesday, November 27.

Sambitory Dimaporo, manager of NFA Iligan-Lanao del Norte, said  after investigation by the the Joint Task Group against rice hoarding, they  found irregularities on the rice trading of businessmen Sonia C. Payan, a Filipino-Chinese and Jhonny D. Tan, a Taiwanese.

The Task Force found around 20,000 bags of rice  at the warehouses of Payan in Palao Market and at Tan’s warehouse, all of Barangay Palao.

Two cargo trucks found in the warehouses of the two traders were also confiscated.

Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol  in a Facebook post stated,  two traders were the first to be arrested in the intensified campaign against rice hoarding ordered by President Rodrigo  Duterte.

But  Piñol said NFA Regional Director for Northern Mindanao Diane Silva said Government agents also confiscated the rice stocks estimated over 19,000 bags.

However, the reports of   Dimaporo and Silva do not tally,  there is a  difference of 1,000 sacks.

Confiscated rice-DA Photo

Silva said the traders were also fined, banned from engaging in grains trading in perpetuity and charged with criminal cases before the local courts.

The confiscated rice will be sold by the NFA to prevent the deterioration of the quality of the stocks with the proceeds placed in escrow in case the traders appeal their case.

Piñol stated “When I visited the warehouse where the confiscated stocks are kept, I congratulated the Joint Task Group which conducted the raid and recommended the promotion of acting NFA Manager Sam Dimaporo to full-fledged manager.”

Members of the Sub-Committee on Rice Hoarding, Cartel and Smuggling which include the National Intelligence Coordinating Agency (NICA), the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), the Bureau of Customs (BOC), the Philippine National Police (PNP), the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA), the Dept. of Trade and Industry (DTI), the Philippine Coast Guard, the Department of Labor and Employment and the NFA, swooped down on the four warehouses following reports of alleged hoarding by the two grains traders.-Divina M. Suson/NewsLine

 

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