Duterte approves 3.9 billion pesos in additional cash assistance for Bataan, Laguna, NCR

STAR PHILIPPINE / BOY SANTOS

PRESIDENT RODRIGO R. Duterte approved an additional 3.873 billion pesos for cash assistance to poor families in the National Capital Region (NCR), Bataan and Laguna, which have been placed under the most lockdown parameters. strict, known as enhanced community quarantine (ECQ).

Deputy Budget Secretary Rolando U. Toledo said Thursday that “we just received the President’s approval this morning for cash assistance for Bataan and Laguna as well as additional cash assistance for NCR.”

In a Viber message, Toledo said the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) is currently preparing the necessary documents to release funds from the Treasury Office to local government units (LGUs) who will distribute them.

In a separate interview at Laging Handa’s briefing on Thursday, Toledo said DBM hopes to release the funds by Friday. The department will also issue a local budget circular to guide LGUs on how funds should be used and distributed.

The government is set to distribute P 1,000 per person or up to P 4,000 per household to low-income families in areas under ECQ as assistance to compensate for loss of livelihoods while restrictions on movement are in effect.

Of the new funds, an additional 368 million pesos will go to the NCR to increase the 10.894 billion pesos previously released in the region to cover more affected families, Toledo said.

This will bring the financial assistance earmarked for capital to 11.262 billion pesos, which he says will be enough to cover the list of beneficiaries the LGUs used when they rolled out a similar cash assistance program in April.

Moreover, Laguna will obtain P2.715 billion and Bataan 700 million pesos.

The two provinces were also placed under ECQ from August 6 to 15. The lockdown in the NCR runs from August 6 to 20.

Under Budget Secretary Tina Rose Marie L. Canda said other areas under the ECQ, such as Iloilo and Cagayan de Oro, received financial support from the Ministry of Social Protection and Development in the month. latest.

While the regional interagency working group of the Cagayan Valley region agreed to place the city of Tuguegarao under ECQ for 10 days, Mr. Toledo of DBM said that providing cash assistance to the city was still under review by the president’s office.

“If the decision is final… DBM will seek a potential source of funds to distribute cash assistance to citizens of the town of Tuguegarao,” he said.

The government has been distributing cash donations to low-income families affected by quarantine since the pandemic began last year. The last two rounds took place in April, worth 23 billion pesos. The first disbursement from April 2020 amounted to 205 billion pesos under the social improvement program. – Beatrice M. Laforga


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