City Vet alarmed over reported new ASF cases in Davao City amidst Covid-19 pandemic

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DAVAO CITY — Backyard piggery owners from the purok 32 and 29 in the village of Inayangan are doubly hit while they are free from infection from coronavirus-19 pandemic, their hogs are dying due to suspected cases of African Swine Free (ASF).

A backyard piggery owner informed Newsline that his two hogs died a week ago, and his neighbors are experiencing the same.

In February this year, the city government implemented a lockdown in the villages of Dominga and Lamanan in Calinan District, which is just an adjacent village to Inayangan.

That time, no pig or pork products were allowed to enter and exit the said areas and a checkpoint was also established.

Village officials were also briefed appropriately on the culling protocol that will be implemented in the quarantine zone.

Bryan told Newsline his two pigs which were scheduled to be slaughtered for his ‘pamanhikan” (Pamamanhikan is a Filipino custom where a man, together with his family, pays a visit to the home of his intended bride. On this occasion, his family will ask the formal blessing of the woman’s family for the wedding). But the pigs suddenly died.

Bryan said his neighbor’s pigs have died and they suspect ASF is alive in their village.

The Newsline immediately asked City Veterinarian Cerelyn Pinili about the report but she said they conducted testing a week in the previously hit village in Inayangan while yielded negative results.

Pinili however said, “The puroks identified now was not part of the sampling, we do regular monitoring and we asked the Barangay captain to also monitor his village, but so far, he never mentioned anything”.

“Given the information, we will conduct immediate sampling to verify the claim of the farmers,” she added.

Reports reaching Newsline revealed at least ten pigs have died during the last ten days.

Jason, whose aunt lost three pigs said “Anang hapon buhi pa and baboy, pagmata nila sa buntag, wala na patay na (In the afternoon the pig is still alive but came the next morning as they woke up -it’s dead).

Inayangan is about 45 kilometers from the city center, farmers are into farming and backyard piggery.

The village was among those affected during the January culling conducted by the City Veterinarian’s Office due to ASF infection.

Hundreds of pigs were culled during the operations. but the culling was done within the one kilometer radius form the areas hit while the next area were under observation.

But Jason revealed, the famers who were not covered by the culling and whose pigs were not paid, continue to raise pigs because their area was not included in the one kilometer radius protocol.

Recently, however, some residents noticed their pigs appeared sick, and they slaughter and sell it to their neighbors as pandemic hit the world.

Pinili said the Calinan district is coded light pink as of now, as they continue to monitor the ASF development, “We were hoping that the Department of Agriculture will change our code to light green which would mean, pork and its products can now be sold outside Davao City because the case is gone but this development is very alarming, we need to act immediately,” she told Newsline.-Editha Z. Caduaya

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