Iloilo officials order quick containment of 1st ASF case in Western Visayas 

PHILSTAR FILE PHOTO

LOCAL executives of Iloilo have ordered immediate containment measures against the potential spread of African Swine Fever (ASF) after the first suspected case of the viral disease was reported late last week.  

Iloilo and the entire Western Visayas had previously been among the last few regions in the country that had remained ASF-free since the first outbreak in July 2019.  

Iloilo City Mayor Jerry P. Treñas on Saturday ordered a ban on the entry of live hogs and pork products from the neighboring municipality Oton, although the Department of Agriculture had yet to issue a confirmation that the ASF case was in that town.  

“Strict implementation of border controls and veterinary quarantine measures, including cargo and passenger inspections shall be imposed at all ports of entry into Iloilo City. All Livestock Transport Passes issued for Livestock Transport Vehicles and Reefer Vans shall be reviewed and regulated,” Mr. Treñas said in the executive order dates Oct. 15.  

Iloilo City is administratively independent from the provincial government of Iloilo.  

Iloilo Governor Arthur R. Defensor, Jr. on Friday said movement of live pigs and pork products within the province “shall not be hampered” but called for the activation of all ASF task forces from the town to village levels.  

These task forces are mandated to check on all hog raisers in their respective areas, conduct continued monitoring, and immediately report suspected ASF cases.  

Provincial Veterinary Office chief Darel B. Tabuada reported to the governor on Friday that “border control within the half-kilometer radius from ‘ground zero’ to prevent the transport of pigs in and out of the area” had already been set up.