Davao City Mayor Sara Z. Duterte. (PNA file photo)

DAVAO CITY – The city government here has banned the entry of live pigs, pork meat and other pork-related products coming from two neighboring provinces beginning Monday.

Mayor Sara Duterte said the move was necessary following the confirmed African Swine Fever (ASF) case in Davao Occidental and a suspected case in Davao del Sur.

“This morning (Monday), I received a report that there is a suspected case in Davao del Sur for ASF. We will no longer wait for the result of the tests. We include the banning of their province to further protect the hog industry and hog farmers here in our city,” she said.

On Friday (January 31), the Department of Agriculture (DA) confirmed an ASF case in Don Marcelino town in Davao Occidental--the first in Mindanao.

Don Marcelino Mayor Michael Maruya ordered a "24/7 temporary lockdown" in the selling and buying of pigs following the death of about 1,000 heads of swine in eight barangays, namely Linadasan, North Lamidan, South Lamidan, Calian, Mabuhay, Lawa, Nueva Villa, and Baluntaya.

“We will not allow any products coming from those provinces. We do not have a case here in Davao City and we’d like to keep it that way,” she said.

In September last year, Duterte signed Executive Order 39 that enforces a temporary ban on all live pigs, pork and pork-related products and by-products whether fresh, frozen, processed or cooked but not limited to frozen boar semen from the entire island of Luzon and other ASF-affected areas.

The provisions of the Executive Order mandated the swine raisers in Davao City to practice strict biosecurity and good animal husbandry practices in their farms. It also mandates strict vigilance on swine raisers to report suspicious mortality of their pigs to the City Veterinarian’s Office for verification.

“We already banned it in Luzon and this time the order expanded to Davao Occidental and Davao del Sur,” she said.

Duterte also assured the public that personnel from the City Veterinarian’s Office (CVO) were also deployed in the entry and exit points of the city to ensure that no pigs or pork products can enter the city.

She also reminded the public to avoid swill feeding.

“When pigs are fed with ASF contaminated meat, it is one way of contracting the disease,” Duterte added.

On the other hand, Mindanao Development Authority Chairman Emmanuel Piñol called on hog industry stakeholders to help contain the disease by lending their “power sprayers, preferably motorized, disinfectants, empty drums, wide galvanized pans for footbaths and tents."

"We will be employing policemen and soldiers to make sure nothing comes out of Don Marcelino and its neighboring town Jose Abad Santos," Piñol said.

He said it is important to contain the problem and prevent the spread of the disease by immediately implementing quarantine measures. (PNA)