During the activity, Lacson led thesigning of the pledge of support to ASF-free Negros Occidental. Some officialsdonned shirts printed with words, “Let’s eat Negros pork”. In his message, Lacson hinted at apossible legal battle the province could face as some groups have expressedintention to legally question the ordinance. To promote its African swine fever-free pork industry, the provincial government of Negros Occidental holds a lechon eating on Nov. 26 at the Provincial Capitol’s Social Hall. Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson and Vice Governor Jeffrey Ferrer officially signed Provincial Ordinance 2019-024, otherwise known as The ASF Prevention Ordinance. NEGROS OCCIDENTAL PIO Decena said there might be those whowill “test” the ordinance, but the province is “ready to face them.” Negros Occidental is the number onebackyard hog raiser in the country, and figures showed that the province’scurrent annual production for both backyard and commercial swine is 510,000heads. (With a report from PNA/PN) “This is very crucial, passing thisordinance. We all know that we have to save our hog industry. Through this, wehave strengthened our drive against ASF,” the governor said in his messageduring the program held at Capitol Social Hall. Lacson also declared Negros Occidentalas ASF-free province by virtue of Provincial Board Resolution 1042. Before the ordinance was passed, Lacson,who chairs the Provincial ASF Task Force, issued Executive Order 19-40temporarily banning pork products coming from Luzon for a period of 90 days,beginning Sept. 18. “When in doubt, inspectors can ship backthe pork products, including those mixed in other shipments like chicken andbeef. Across territorial and political boundaries, we will pursue theinspection and confiscation,” Decena said. The launching activity was also attendedby officers and members of Alliance of Hog Raisers Association of NegrosOccidental, personnel of concerned government agencies, and representativesfrom feed manufacturers, among others. Part of the salient features is thecontinuation of the inspection and confiscation of pork products fromASF-affected areas that will be intercepted in ports, including those inBacolod City. BACOLOD City – The province of Negros Occidental has imposed apermanent ban of pork and related products from Luzon and countriesaffected by African swine fever (ASF). Several heads of lechon (roasted pig)and pork-based products such as ham and tocino were prepared to showcase NegrosOccidental as ASF-free. “There’s a possibility of legal battle.Whatever it takes, we will challenge any effort from those who will violate theordinance,” the governor said. On Tuesday afternoon, Gov. Eugenio JoseLacson and Vice governor Jeffrey Ferrer signed Provincial Ordinance 2019-024,otherwise known as ”The ASF Prevention Ordinance of Negros Occidental” to keepthe province free from the virus. Penalties range from P1,000 to P5,000,and one-year imprisonment, depending on the gravity of the offense. Dr. Renante Decena, provincialveterinarian and task force co-chair, said the ordinance is scheduled forpublication on Wednesday, after which its provisions will be enforced startingDecember 6. The ban covers live pigs, pork, porkproducts, and by-products from Luzon whether fresh, processed or canned whichcan carry the ASF virus.