Affected by the rice tarrification law

PALO, Leyte- Employees of the National Food Authority (NFA) in the region and the rest of the country are sure to exercise their right to vote comes the May 19 elections-by not voting those responsible on the enactment of the rice tarrification law.
The rice tarrification law as contained under Republic Act 11203 is expected to result in the retrenchment of NFA’s employees as it stripped much of its functions, hitting the employment status of these workers in the process.
In Eastern Visayas, about 20 NFA workers are to lose their jobs due to the implementation of RA 11203, said Ella Vircelle Eguillos, NFA-8 information officer.
At present, NFA-8 has 214 permanent workers.
Eguillos said that these workers are assigned to NFA’s licensing, and registration, and warehouse inspection, among others.
Under RA 11203 or the Rice Import and Export Liberalization Law, NFA’s regulatory, monitoring and distribution functions were abolished as it would now only be in charged in the procurement of locally-produced palay to ensure the country’s buffer stock.
“All these 20 workers who will be directly hit by the restructuring are still reporting for work. We are still waiting for the guidelines how this will be implemented or the compensation package (involved for those who will be separated from their jobs),” Eguillos said.
Obviously, being separated from their jobs appears not to sit well among those who will be affected.
An employee, who asked not to be named and who will be affected with the projected retrenchment due to the implementation of RA 11203, said that they will not vote reelectionist senators who signed the law.
The same employee, who refused to be named for fear that he would be charged for electioneering, said that while they understand the primary consideration of the law, which is to help bring down the price of rice in the market, its implementation has affected them.
“NFA workers are to be directly hit by the implementation of RA 11203. So we cannot be blame (if we will not vote these senators),” the employee, whose been in NFA for about 10 years now, said.
Among the senators who signed RA 11203 who are up for reelections in this year’s midterm elections are Senators Edgardo Angara, Bam Aquino, Aquilino Pimentel, JV Ejercito, Grace Poe, Nancy Binay, and Cynthia Villar, the main author of the rice tarrification law.
About 1,000 NFA workers across the country are expected to lose jobs due to the enactment of RA 11203.