Decisions by the Halal Board under RA 10817, plagued by uncertainties: Halal advocate says

Decisions by the Halal Board under RA 10817Future decisions that will be made by the Philippine Halal Export Development and Promotion Program (PHEDPP), simply called the “Halal Board” are seen to be plagued by uncertainties.

This was a expressed by an Halal advocate in an interview who requested anonymity.

The Halal Board was created by virtue of Republic Act No. 10817, entitled: An Act Instituting the Philippine Halal Export Development and Promotion Program, Creating for the Purpose the Philippine Halal Export Development and Promotion Board, and for Other Purposes signed into law by the President Benigno Simeon C. Aquino III very recently.

Although there were objections of many sectors from the Muslim communities and their clamour for the President to veto the bill, the same was signed into law by the latter.

The Halal advocate said, “The Board is composed of eight non-Muslims and only three are Muslims. On resolving issues including granting of accreditation, every division of the house (by the board), the Muslim votes will always be outnumbered by the votes of the non-Muslims, thus the inclination will most likely be favouring haram than the halal.”

“It will be then called “halalizing the haram and this is classified as among the most condemned acts by any individual or group,” he said.

Composition of the Halal Board is as follows: (1)The Secretary of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) as Chairperson; (2)The Secretary of the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos (NCMF) as Vice Chairperson; The members are: (3)The Secretary of the Department of Agriculture (DA); (4) The Secretary of the Department of Health (DOH); (5) The Secretary of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST);(6) The Secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA);(7) The Secretary of the Department of Tourism (DOT);(8)The Governor of the Bangko Sentralng Pilipinas (BSP); (9) The Chairperson of the Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA); (10 and 11) Two Muslim professionals from the academe, law, industry, or food science who have experience in Halal industry development.

The Halal advocate lamented, “Clearly the Congress of the Philippines and the President of the Philippines supplanted the rightful authorities who have full knowledge of the job with persons who are ignorant of the same.”

“Obviously, they are deceiving not only the Bangsamoro people but all Muslim consumers of Philippine products around the world. These are collected views from interviews by this correspondent,” he said.

He explained that once this Board will not be corrected at this early stage by appointing therein the rightful authorities from the Muslim communities, it will entail long years for the Muslim world market to accept if the rectification of the error will come after the issue will be fully known throughout the world.

“The companies manufacturing Filipino products will suffer collateral damage as a result,” he pointed out.

Meanwhile, the halal program started by the DOST, Region XII under Director Hadja Zenaida P. HR Laidanhas been going well and gaining acceptance in the Muslim international community. However, the program has been periled by the advent of this Board under the new law mentioned.

 

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