Catholic prelate appeals local traders not to hike prices of basic commodities

By on December 6, 2014

Typical market scene in the Philippines (Hulagway via Flickr / Wikipedia)
Typical market scene in the Philippines (Hulagway via Flickr / Wikipedia)

MANILA — A Catholic bishop appealed to local traders in areas to be affected by typhoon Ruby not to take advantage of the calamity situation by increasing prices of basic and essential commodities.

At mass held on Saturday, Borongan Bishop Crispin Varquez urged businessmen to maintain the prices of goods, and should not only think of gaining money.

“Do not take advantage of others at this time of calamity. You’re not the only ones who the right to live,” he said in an article posted on the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) news website.

He added, “In fact, it is a great sin against God and against love of your suffering brothers and sisters to use these trying times for your personal economic advantage!”

It was reported that panic-buying of basic goods broke out last Thursday in the province and nearby areas as in anticipation of the storm.

At the same time, the diocese has opened the doors of its churches and seminary to thousands of residents who evacuated from coastal communities.

As of 7 a.m. Saturday, the typhoon was located 230km east northeast of Borongan.

Meanwhile, the Archbishop of Jaro urged the clergy and the lay faithful in the archdiocese to prayer, as well as to be of assistance to those to be affected by typhoon “Ruby”.

“Help one another. Above all, gather in your in homes or in your churches to PRAY!” Jaro Archbishop Angel Lagdameo said in a circular to the faithful.

The prelate seconded the appeal of CBCP president Archbishop Socrates Villegas to “listen and follow the instructions given by the CBCP regarding typhoon ‘Ruby’ (‘Hagupit’), first, to pray and, second, to open the doors of the churches and schools to refugees and to those badly in need of shelter.”