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Iloilo, Neg.Occ. rice retailers receive gov’t aid

ILOILO CITY (PIA) -- Several small rice retailers in Western Visayas received cash assistance from the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) on September 13, here.

DSWD 6 Regional Director lawyer Carmelo N. Nochete led the pilot distribution of the one-time aid under the agency’s Sustainable Livelihood Program - Economic Relief Subsidy (SLP-ERS) program amounting to P15,000.

“Nagapasalamat kami nga kamo nga 14 (small rice retailers) diri sa Iloilo City (We are thankful that 14 of you from Iloilo City) willingly and readily complied with Executive Order No. 39,” said Nochete during the initial payout.

The first beneficiary Rosario B. Bañez, a 72-year-old rice retailer from Jaro Big Market, shared that following the imposition of the price cap on rice, they have felt the effect on their daily sales. That’s why she was thankful for the support received from the government.

“Bilang recipient sang subsidy, nagapasalamat gid ako sa aton nga pangulohan, labi na gid sa aton President Marcos sa iya bulig, assistance para sa

DSWD 6 Regional Director lawyer Carmelo N. Nochete briefs the recipients of the Sustainable Livelihood Program - Economic Relief Subsidy (SLP-ERS) who are affected by the imposition of the Executive Order No. 39 mandating the price cap on rice all over the country. Photo: PIA Region VI

amon nga magagmay nga mga negosyante (As a recipient of the subsidy, I thank our government, especially to President Marcos for the assistance for us small rice retailers),” Bañez added.

Meanwhile, another beneficiary Roderick R. Lopez, who has been in rice retailing for 10 years, admitted that they had adjusted the prices of rice since its increase in the previous weeks until the imposition of EO 39 to serve their customers which resulted in their loss.

Rosario B. Bañez (3rd from left), a 72-year-old rice retailer from Jaro district, receives the one-time P15,000 cash aid from DSWD 6 Regional Director lawyer Carmelo N. Nochete during the initial payout for Region 6, September 13. They are accompanied by DTI 6 OIC Ermelinda Pollentes (1st from left) and Iloilo City Vice Mayor and OIC Jeffrey Ganzon (2nd from left). Photo: PIA Region VI

“Nagapasalamat kami gid no sa aton nga government, sa kay (President) Bongbong Marcos, sa DSWD, DTI kag DA para sa cash assistance nga ginhatag sa amon. Dako ni nga bulig para sa amon (We are very thankful to the government, to President Bongbong Marcos, to DSWD, DTI and DA for the cash assistance given to us. It will be of great help to us),” Lopez said.

Iloilo City Vice Mayor and OIC Jeffrey Ganzon together with Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) 6 OIC Ermelinda Pollentes and Department of Agriculture (DA) 6 Regional Executive Director Dennis Arpia joined the said payout launch of the region.

On the other hand, DSWD 6 with Assistant Regional Director for Operations Arwin Razo facilitated the payout at the Food Terminal Market of Occidental Negros (FTMON) in Bacolod City for 34 small rice retailers from Negros Occidental.

During the payout, 74-year-old rice retailer Ninfa Caunga from Isabela town, Negros Occidental was the first to receive cash assistance from Razo together with DA Regional Technical Director for Operations Engr. Jose Albert A. Barrogo, DTI 6 OIC Assistant Regional Director Rachel Nufable, and Bacolod City Administrator Atty. Pacifico Maghari III.

Ninfa Caunga, 74 years old, from Isabela Negros Occ., receives from DSWD Assistant Regional Director Arwin Razo the P15, 000 cash subsidy for small rice retailers, September 13. Photo: PIA Negros Occidental
DSWD 6 Sustainable Livelihood Program - Economic Relief Subsidy (SLP-ERS) staff facilitate the release of the cash assistance to one of the small rice retailers from Iloilo. Photo: PIA Region VI

To note, these beneficiaries, as earlier announced by DSWD 6, are part of the 250 small rice retailers in the region affected by the imposition of the rice price cap for the initial release under the SLP-ERS program with the allocation of P3.75 million.

For inquiries regarding the program, the public may reach the DSWD 6 at (033) 330-7860 or email at

On his part, DA 6 chief Arpia cited the rice retailers and traders in the region who adhere to the implementation of EO 39 while being optimistic about the coming harvest season which will provide more stocks and will further stabilize the price of rice in the region. (EAD/AAL/FRG/PIA6 with reports from PIA NegOcc)

About the Author

Franz Remar Garion

Region 6

Indicium gladio fortior est

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