CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines – Following the nationwide distribution of the Social Amelioration Program (SAP) to the families affected by the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, a lawmaker here has asked the Duterte administration to extend the financial aid to poor households living in provinces placed under the general community quarantine (GCQ).
Rep. Rufus Rodriguez made an appeal to include the five million households that did not receive the financial assistance following the memorandum issued by Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea on Friday, May 23.
The said memorandum limits the second installment of SAP to 12 million families in enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) and modified ECQ areas.
“I am asking ES Medialdea to reconsider his decision and to already include the low income households in the GCQ areas in the second tranche this month,” he said.
The SAP’s second tranche would be limited to ECQ and modified ECQ areas or only those poor families in Metro Manila, some Luzon provinces, and two cities in Cebu would receive the cash assistance.
“The poor in most provinces, who, like those in Metro Manila, were without jobs and income during the two-month ECQ, would be excluded. I think that is not the intention of the President and Congress,” he said.
The solon said it is clear in Republic Act 11469 ( Bayanihan to Heal As One Llaw) that 18 million low-income families would receive the SAP ranging from P5,000 to P8,000 for two months or for April and May.
He noted that Congress has done its part by passing RA 11469 which gave Pres. Rodrigo Duterte the power to realign the 2020 national budget to generate the funds needed for the SAP implementation.
Duterte and the executive branch, he said, “don’t need to go back to Congress” to seek for additional funding for the SAP. (davaotoday.com)