ON BICOL PROVINCES’ NUTRITION SURVEY: Tallado happy; LRay doubtful
By Juan Escandor Jr.
PILI, Camarines Sur—Two governors of Bicol expressed contradicting reactions after the National Nutrition Council (NCC) released this month results of the 2011 Operation Timbang.
The NCC-Operation Timbang showed that Camarines Norte has the least number of malnourished children surveyed with 12.97 percent while Camarines Sur has the most number of malnourished children with 19 percent.
Catanduanes has the second most number of malnourished with 18.3 percent; Masbate, 16.39 percent; Albay, 14.91 percent; and Sorsogon, 13 percent.
Embracing the nutrition survey results, Camarines Norte Gov. Edgar Tallado was happy over the performance of barangay health workers in the province for delivering results of the province’s nutrition program.
Tallado said the efforts of the provincial government and barangay health workers had paid off with the serious campaign to improve the nutritional situation of children through feeding and awareness-raising initiatives like popularizing simple and cheap food for them.
He said the results of the nutrition survey further encouraged him to invest more for the health and nutrition of mothers and children of the 12-town province.
Casting doubt on the accuracy of the latest nutrition survey, Camarines Sur Gov. Luis Raymund Villafuerte Jr. said it covered only 55 provinces out of 80 provinces in the Philippines.
Villafuerte said the number of provinces that did not submit for the survey comprised more than 30 percent which include Samar.
He said the towns that did not submit report on nutrition affected the overall results and standing of the province with regard to the number of malnourished children.
Villafuerte said the overall rating of the province is pulled down by the non-submission of the nutrition report by several towns in Camarines Sur.
“But assuming the report (on nutrition) is accurate, this is a wake-up call for town and barangay officials,” he stressed.
Villafuerte has taken to task town and city mayors to alleviate the malnutrition incidence in the province. “The law says that it is the municipalities and barangays that are responsible for checking the incidence of malnutrition among children.”
He claimed that the Camarines Sur provincial government has been implementing a comprehensive nutrition program since 2004.