Roving ‘talipapa’ hits GenSan streets amid COVID-19 quarantine

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews / 30 March) — The city government has deployed “moving talipapa” or rolling stores to bring food and other essential supplies closer to local communities amid the ongoing enhanced community quarantine.

City Mayor Ronnel Rivera said at least four trucks converted into mobile stores have been going around the city’s 26 barangays and selling various food products and basic goods directly to residents.

He said the “moving talipapa” rolled out starting Saturday in five barangays and will cover eight more in the next two days.

“This is aimed to minimize the need for our residents to go to the public markets and malls to purchase food and prevent person-to-person contact in the process,” he said in a radio interview.

The mayor said the prices of all commodities in the mobile stores were regulated “so that anyone can afford them.”

He said the products were supplied by the city government’s partner vendors from the public market, cooperatives and farmers.

The available commodities include rice, vegetables, fresh fruits, fish as well as fresh and processed meat products.

An advisory posted on the local government’s Facebook page said only residents wearing face masks and carrying quarantine passes duly issued by the barangay councils were allowed to buy from the mobile stores.

Meantime, the city government released over the weekend an initial 2,500 sacks of rice to the barangays to facilitate their repacking and immediate distribution to the identified recipients.

Rivera said they have identified a total of 46,351 households as initial recipients of the “survival food packs.”

These comprise indigent, marginalized and vulnerable households that were identified through an earlier census conducted by the City Planning and Development Office, he said.

The mayor said he also directed the barangay councils to submit lists of displaced workers and residents who lost their livelihood due to the heightened quarantine measures over the 2019 coronavirus disease or Covid-19 threat.