Solon seeks probe on alleged overpricing of rice
MANILA, Philippines - ABAKADA Party List representatives Jonathan dela Cruz has filed House Resolution 261 seeking a congressional investigation into the country's rice supply, the cost of rice and allegations of an overpricing of imported rice.
This comes amid reports of a rice shortage in the country.
In his resolution, Dela Cruz noted the price increment of the lowest commercial grade rice variety rose from P27/kilo a few months ago to P34/kilo recently, while the nearest priced stocks are at P41/kilo.
"The National Food Authority, despite its legal mandate and resources, has apparently failed to bring down and stabilize the price of rice to a level that is affordable and accessible," he said.
Dela Cruz warned that problems with the rice supply may lead to more problems.
"Baka magkaroon tayo ng pila-pila. Riot pa yan sa ating mga warehouses. Eto pa sinasabi ng DA at NFA baka may naghohoard. Kung may naghohoard puntahan na niyo pabuksan ninyo. You have visitorial powers. Bakit di nila puntahan yung mga yun? Bakit nagkakaroon price increases," he asked.
Dela Cruz cited reports of an expose that the DA-NFA's importation of rice of 205,700 metric tons last April was overpriced allegedly by P442 million.
Dela Cruz said the reports say about 18,700 metric tons were imported without clearance from the finance department.
Based on a check with the Oryza Global Rice price index, he noted the importation was allegedly overpriced by P2,150 per metric ton.