Malacañang on Thursday said the label in a Chinese hair product saying Manila is a province of China should be ignored.
“Kalokohan lang po ‘yan. Hindi dapat pinapansin ‘yan dahil wala namang naniniwala na tayo’y probinsya ng Tsina,” presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said in a televised briefing.
(That’s just foolishness. That should be ignored because no one believes that we are a province of China.)
“We are proud to be Filipinos, and we will never allow [ourselves] to be subjugated by any foreign power,” Roque said.
Roque made the statement after PBA party-list Representative Jericho Nograles pushed to blacklist a Chinese hair product in the country after its label listed Manila as a province of China.
Roque said the administration recognizes the FDA’s “exclusive jurisdiction” to decide on Nograles’ request.
Nograles sent a letter of complaint to the Department of Trade and Industry and the Food and Drug Administration about the Chinese hair care product Ashley Shine Keratin Treatment Deep Repair. At the back of the product is its address, “1st Flr. 707 Ito Cristo St., San Nicolas, Manila Province, P.R. China.”
Manila province of China?
The lawmaker said a company in Binondo owned by a Chinese national imported and distributed the beauty product.
“Any act to undermine our sovereignty must be taken seriously. It is in this light that we respectfully ask your Office to immediately investigate this detestable and repulsive offense against our nation, and, if legally justified, prohibit the continued distribution of these products in our country,” he said in his letters.
Nograles believes that labeling Manila as a province of China could have been intentional as it was “hard to dismiss this insult as a simple error.”
“The label clearly shows Manila, as a province of China. This incident must be investigated at the very least, and the manufacturer and importer should be blacklisted as soon as legally permitted,” he said.
He added incident should also push lawmakers to establish a measure that would penalize mislabeling on consumer goods.