Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Officer-in-Charge Emmanuel Leyco assured the public that the current issue of low supply of rice from the National Food Authority (NFA) will not affect disaster relief operations in Mayon and other areas.

“DSWD uses NFA rice for the family food packs which the agency distributes to families affected by calamities. So far, the Department has stocks of NFA rice that will last until the first week of March,” OIC Leyco explained.

DSWD continuously coordinates with the NFA for its rice requirements.

However, this does not prevent the Department from considering options to purchase commercial rice subject to regular government procurement rules in case the NFA has insufficient  rice supplies.

OIC Leyco added, “In case there will be a shortage of NFA rice, the Department will explore purchasing commercial rice.  As an institution mandated to quickly implement relief operations in times of disaster, our paramount concern is to ensure that ample family food packs are available for distribution to displaced families.”

If this happens, DSWD needs to secure a certification from the NFA clearly stating their inability to supply the requirements of the Department.  Only then can DSWD consider other rice source options.  This is based on Executive Order 58 series of 1998. ###