No complacency vs hunger, Palace vows

Alexis Romero (The Philippine Star) – December 21, 2020 – 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Malacañang yesterday vowed not to be complacent in its campaign against hunger even if a nationwide poll has indicated that fewer families experienced involuntary hunger in the past three months.

A Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey conducted from Nov. 21 to 25 found that 16 percent or about four million families experienced involuntary hunger or hunger due to lack of food to eat at least once in the last three months.

The figure was lower than the record-high 30.7 percent or about 7.6 million families recorded in September but is double the pre-pandemic 8.8 percent or 2.1 million families in December last year.

“This is a big improvement from past surveys. We will not be complacent, however. We are in fact encouraged to push further and work harder,” Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said in a statement.

“The almost 15 percent drop in the figures, from 30.7 percent just last September, shows we are getting positive results in our efforts to combat poverty and hunger, even with the difficulties posed by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic,” he added.

Nograles, head of the government’s anti-hunger task force, said he was optimistic that the food and nutrition outlook for Filipino families would improve because of the administration’s programs.

“We of course do not obsess with these figures but they just show how the Duterte administration is steadily improving the lives of Filipino families, especially children who are most vulnerable during the health crisis,” Nograles said.

The fourth quarter 2020 SWS poll used face-to-face interviews of 1,500 adults nationwide. The sampling error margins are plus or minus 2.5 percent for national percentages, plus or minus four percent for balance Luzon, and plus or minus sixs percent for Metro Manila, the Visayas and Mindanao.

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