Press Release
October 11, 2011

After DA budget hearing

Q: On Miriam saying irregular ang procedure ng bicameral constituent assembly.

We believe that it can be supported by the present provisions. At the end of the day, it will be the Supreme Court who will decide as to whether or not this fourth mode would be a valid way of amending the Constitution.

Q: Hindi acceptable kay Sen Miriam na itratong parang ordinary bill ang constitutional amendments

Naiintindihan namin, nirerespeto namin ang kanyang opinyon. We have our own opinion and at the end of the day it will be the Supreme Court who will decide which of the two opinions are valid.

Q: Hindi ba irregular ang PAL-FASAP decision nay may finality na tapos binawi pa ulit?

On the basis of the newspaper reports, it would appear to be not in the usual procedure. That reminds you also of the flip-flopping in the cityhood cases. The same. There was already an entry of judgment and yet the court also had a new decision. So I am no longer surprised at the flip-flopping.

Q: Hindi ba yun unfair sa PAL employees?

As I said, this is not the first time that court has flip flopped on an issue that they have decided.

Q: Overly optimistic ba ang self sufficiency ng DA by 2013?

Unang una, dahilan sa mga bagyong dumaan, ang ating predicted palay production of 17 million metric tons will fall short by about a million MT, but we have sufficient palay to effectively respond to our needs. Wala kaming nakikitang pagtaas ng presyo ng ating bigas dahilan sa bagyo. May nasira ngunit ang production sa Visayas ay sufficient to partially cover up for the production loss in Luzon. The Agriculture department has stayed firm on its program for self sufficiency by 2013, which means the country's rice production will go up to 21 million MT. Ambitious, but we will support the project of the DA. We will provide the necessary funds in order to support our rice production, particularly for self sufficiency by 2013.

Q: In the mean time we will continue to import?

Yes we will continue to import. Ang plano sa susunod na taon ay mag iimport pa rin tayo. Ilan? Hindi ko alam. Yan ay pag uusapan ng NFA pagdating ng Nobyembre.

Q: May sapat na buffer stock?

Sapat ang kanilang buffer stock. By the declaration of NFA, there is sufficient stock that will provide us sufficiency in the basic staple.

Q: Nagkasundo na ba kayo kasi parang ang gulo ng figures?

Nagkasundo kami. Ang kanilang prediction, without the typhoons hitting us, was something like 17.2 million MT of palay for 2011. With the typhoons, the whole production for the whole year should be about 16.2-16.3 million MT. This should not be any serious concern because we have enough production and we have enough palay in stock.

Q: Maski may dumating pang 2 bagyo?

Mayroon na po yan. May allowance for more weather disturbance.

Q: Walang dapat itaas ng presyo ng bigas?

Dapat ay wag tumaas.

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