By Freddie G. Lazaro

LAOAG CITY, Ilocos Norte – Livestock raisers are continuously benefitting from the animal dispersal program of the Ilocos Norte government amid COVID-19 pandemic.

The provincial government is sustaining the program to help the local livestock raisers generate more income during the crisis.

Provincial Veterinary Officer Loida Valenzuela said on Sunday that on July 21, her office spearheaded the dispersal of 33 native piglets to three women organizations, namely, the Rural Improvement Clubs of Barangay Sto. Tomas and Barangay San Jose, both in Vintar town, and Barangay Bato in Badoc town.

Each organization has received one male and ten female piglets, along with electrolytes, deworming medications, and vitamins.

Aside from swine, the the provincial government through the Provincial Veterinary Office (PVO) also dispersed goats and other livestock animals.

Since 2010, the provincial government had dispersed 28,700 farm animals to almost 11,000 recipients. Also, 473 livestock were re-dispersed to 310 recipients.

Valenzuela said the organizations-recipients of the dispersal program will roll the program to other organizations in the province.

“We are closely monitoring the roll-dispersal of the livestock to other organizations to make sure that all livestock raisers will receive the program,” she said.

Meanwhile, Ilocos Norte has maintained its ASF-free status since its outbreak in Luzon. The presence of COVID-19 checkpoints during the lockdown helped in the strict monitoring of entry of swine products in the province.

However, Valenzuela said the provincial government has available heads of swine for the successive dispersal program in the province.

Governor Matthew Marcos Manotoc assured to sustain the program to help more marginalized sectors in the province at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We continue to find ways on how to help and support all the demographics in our province,” the governor said.

For more information, visit Laoag LGU.