Bulacan officials feast on Ebola Reston-free roasted pigs

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 11 2009 01:18 PM | Updated as of Mar 11 2009 09:18 PM

After clearing a hog farm in Bulacan province of Ebola Reston-infected pigs, local officials recently gathered and dug into finger-licking good, virus-free roasted pigs.

The Bulacan provincial government said "it’s fiesta time" in Pandi town after the Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI) finished culling thousands of pigs that were found infected with the potent Ebola Reston virus.

After the BAI's announcement of the culling’s completion last Friday, Bulacan Governor Joselito Mendoza prepared several roasted pigs for the members of the province's peace and order council.

Mendoza, joined by the chief executives of Pandit, Pulilan and Plaridel town, local police officials and health officials, including Dr. Eric Tayag of the National Epidemiology Center, dug into crispy, juicy roasted hogs after the peace and order council.
The Bulacan government said the roasted pig feast is a sort of thanksgiving after the clearing of a Pandi pig farm, which was affected by the virus.

A total of 6,210 infected pigs were slaughtered by the BAI in a week-long culling operation at the Pandi hog farm.

BAI Director Davino Catbagan said the bureau and the Department of Health immediately started "disinfecting" the hog farm last Saturday. The disinfection will last for another week, he said.

Officials said the hog farm's operation will resume three to six months after the disinfection.

Catbagan said the BAI and the Department of Health (DOH) will move to other farms around Bulacan, Central Luzon and Southern Tagalog to make sure pigs in the areas are also safe from the Ebola Reston virus.

"After ng hog farm dito sa Pandi, iyong ibang hog farms naman at iyong ibang backyard farms din (After the Pandi hog farm, we will check other hog farms and backyard farms)," he said.