Duterte to police: arrest tuna vendors deceiving buyers

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/20 Sept) — Mayor Rodrigo Duterte on Sunday ordered the Davao City Police Office (DCPO) to arrest and file charges against vendors selling tuna coated with pig’s blood to make it appear fresh.

This after local authorities caught some vendors in Matina Aplaya, Puan, and Toril selling fish with pig’s blood last week.

In his television program “Gikan sa Masa, Para sa Masa” on Sunday, Duterte said the vendors who would not heed his warning will face estafa for deceiving consumers.

The mayor said the violators “will be prosecuted for estafa under the Revised Penal Code because you make the fish you are selling appear fresh. What makes it worse is that, they are laced with (pig’s blood). That makes it doubly reprehensible because you must remember that ang ating mga kapatid na Muslim ay hindi kumakain ng baboy” (our brother Muslims do not eat pork).”

He explained that deceit is not a simple offense and cannot be taken light as compared to simple violations of unsanitary practices by some ambulant vendors.

“I will order the market master to oust you from the market and you will be arrested for estafa,” he said.

Chief Insp. Milgrace C. Driz, spokesperson of the Davao City Police told Mindanews ons Sunday that they will heed Duterte’s order and will assist the City Veterinarian’s Office and the market inspectors in the conduct of their operations “against this fraudulent and deceitful act.”

Vendors with defective weighting scales will be treated the same, Duterte added, saying that it is his job to protect the “health and interest of the public.”

“Basta mangilad kanang timbangan, you make it appear also na bug-at, pangilad gihapun na (When you deceive using your weighing scale, you make it appear heavy, it is also deceit),” he said.

The mayor said he will not only order the confiscation of the weighing scale, “I will arrest you, put you out of business, and get you out of all the markets in Davao.”

He explained that he will not tolerate the presence of these violators unlike the manufacturers of durian candies who figured in the poisoning incident that downed close to 2,000 victims last July in Caraga Region.

He said the durian vendors did not intend to do harm to the students. “There was only an unhygienic handling of things but there was no criminal intent, just negligence,” he said. (Antonio L. Colina IV/MindaNews)