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'Spoiled pansit' downs 147 attendees of Bukidnon wedding rite

 COTABATO CITY—  More than a hundred villagers, among them children and indigenous tribes people, got sick after feasting on food served at a wedding in Talakag town in Bukidnon on Saturday. They are now confined in hospitals.

The 147 patients first complained of nausea and painful abdominal spasms before they started throwing up in less than two hours after ingesting the traditional “pansit” served to them at the venue of the wedding in Sitio Calapat in Barangay Tagbak in Talakag at past noontime Saturday.

Pansit is a popular Filipino food made up of noodles cooked with either sautéed chicken, or pork, or shrimps and squid, mixed with cabbage and, optionally, sometimes laced with either thin slices of carrots, or chayote.

The local government units of the adjoining Talakag and Lantapan towns in Bukidnon separately confirmed the food poisoning incident early Sunday. Both LGUs had immediately provided the victims with essential interventions needed to hasten their recovery.

Lantapan Mayor Ernie Devibar has announced that some of the victims are from an ethnic community in Sitio Kibuda in Barangay Kibangay in their municipality.

“Our LGU is assisting them," Devidar said.

Municipal health workers in Lantapan and Talakag had collected specimens of the food served in the weeding rite for laboratory examination by medical technologists and chemists in the Bukidnon Provincial Health Office.

An incumbent member of the Talakag municipal council, Renato Renz Sulatan, Jr. and the chairman of Barangay Tagbak, Runnie Mhel Salungayan, are helping oversee the relief missions of their LGU for the food poisoning victims, now being treated for dehydration caused by excessive vomiting and diarrhea.

"Our LGU and the barangay government of Tagbak are together in monitoring the condition of Talakag residents who got sick and are now in medical facilities,"  Sulatan said.

Bukidnon, which is under Administrative Region 10, is an upland province that has indigenous tribes in contiguous state-recognized ancestral domains.