Piñol relieves NAIA quarantine team

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 04 2019 10:03 AM

MANILA - Agriculture Secretary Manny Piñol has ordered the removal of the entire Quarantine Group assigned at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) for failure to institute protocols to prevent the entry of pork products from areas affected by the African Swine Fever.

The relief takes effect 5 a.m. Friday, according to Piñol's statement posted on the DA's Facebook page.

Piñol pointed out that the country has established a plan of action to prevent the entry of the African Swine Fever after the threat of the disease was monitored by the World Organization for Animal Health early last year.

"The directive was for all Quarantine Stations to establish Footbaths in all entry points of the country, the interception and confiscation of all pork-based products," he said.

However, he learned that the NAIA Quarantine Group was the only station that failed to carry out the directive, citing procurement issues.

"This is an alibi which I will never accept as I have always believed in the Pilipino saying: "Kung gusto, maraming paraan; Kung ayaw, maraming dahilan," he said.

The secretary said he hopes that the action will send a clear message to members of the department that “we cannot take Administrative Directives for granted.”