MANILA—The Department of Agriculture on Friday said it is focusing on addressing supply issues while an investigation on a sugar importation order is ongoing.
Undersecretary Kristine Evangelista of the DA's Consumer and Political Affairs Division assured that sugar demands will be met, adding local producers in the provinces harvested early and milling has started.
This will be used to ensure there will be available sugar in the market, she said.
"Ongoing ang investigation, ito ay iniintay natin kung ano ang magiging resulta nito, meanwhile, kami naman po ay dere-deretso sa supply situation yun ang tinututukan namin ngayon, kasi kailangan naming masiguro na may asukal para sa ating mga kababayan," Evangelista said.
However, she has no information if the involved people have gone to work, and has declined to comment if any of the undersecretaries are mandated to sign on behalf of the President.
The Palace said the investigation will be extensive.
"Sinu-sino ang involved dito? Ano ang extent ng kanilang involvement dito? Was it attended with malice? Or was it negligence? Was it simply bad judgment? Kailangan malaman natin ang mga ito. The investigation will probably cover a more extensive review than simply the resolution that was issued by the Sugar Regulatory Board," said Press Secretary Trixie Cruz Angeles.
Amid the controversy, Evangelista told reporters that DA employees remain steadfast in their roles.
"I think it makes us work even harder to make sure that whatever recommendations that we have is based on true data, the supply situation is always very important," she said.