With the rising threat of the African Swine Fever (ASF) in the country, the Sangguniang Panlungsod of Iloilo City approved a resolution to conduct checkpoints to screen all hogs entering the city as a precautionary measure.

The resolution, authored by Councilor Lyndon Acap, demands for the conduct of checkpoint for surveillance disinfection of swine carriage and strengthened information dissemination about ASF.

The effort to conduct the checkpoint was in compliance to the letter sent by the Regional Agri-Fishery Council (RAFC) chair Ricardo Provido Jr., through the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), endorsing to pass an ordinance to temporarily ban the transporting of live hogs in Western Visayas.

Acap’s resolution requires the City Veterinarian Office, City Health Office, DILG-Iloilo City, Iloilo City Police Office (ICPO) and the Department of Agriculture (DA) to join forces in spearheading the implementation of checkpoint for surveillance, information dissemination and disinfection of animal carriage within the territory of Iloilo.

“They made sure that they inspect required documents showing that swine entering into the city are healthy and safe for human consumption,” said Acap, who leads the SP Committee on Agriculture, Fisheries, Aquatic and Natural Resources.

Acap further emphasized that in the midst of the threat of ASF, Iloilo cannot afford to temporarily ban the animals entering the city because the city has no production of hogs. They are highly dependent from the other cities.

City Veterinarian Dr. Tomas Forteza assured the public that “Iloilo is safe from the threat of ASF”.

“The National Meat Inspection Service and other hog raisers operating in Iloilo are just preparing, cautious about it, especially for hogs that come from other islands. It is already known that even our lechon, some come from Guimaras and Negros Island. But in the whole Panay, according to them, there is no confirmed case of ASF,” he further expounded.

Meanwhile, Councilor Eduardo Peñaredondo filed a proposal to ban the importation of canned pork products from countries affected by the ASF.

The virus is a fatal animal disease affecting pigs. It can last for several weeks in choice cuts, processed and even canned pork that can affect the human health. (RJ Espartinez)