MANILA – The Philippine National Police (PNP) on Wednesday said it is constantly coordinating with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) to secure the distribution of the second tranche of emergency subsidies under the social amelioration program (SAP) due to the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.
PNP spokesperson, Brig. Gen. Bernard Banac said that in compliance with President Rodrigo R. Duterte’s orders, the 205,000-strong police force will help facilitate the distribution of the second tranche of the cash subsidy to beneficiaries.
“Sa direktibang ito ng Pangulong Duterte, karangalan ng PNP na makatulong sa pagbibigay ng ayuda sa mga mamamayan lalo na iyong mga nasa malalayo at isolated na lugar. Ang PNP ay may presensiya sa lahat ng barangay sa buong bansa (On the directives of President Duterte, the PNP is honored to provide assistance to the people especially those in remote and isolated areas. The PNP assures presence in all barangays across the country,” Banac said in a message to the Philippine News Agency.
He added that they are jointly working with the DSWD and the Armed Forces of the Philippines “to map out systems and procedures utilizing resources and personnel of the military and police to reach out to all SAP beneficiaries” in barangays.
Meanwhile, Banac said the PNP’s donation drive dubbed as “Kapwa Ko, Sagot Ko!” Adopt a Family Program is ongoing.
“At present, our police units continue to provide food and relief assistance to poor families in their areas through the ‘Kapwa Ko, Sagot Ko!’ program,” he said.
Under the SAP, each low-income household in the country will get a monthly emergency subsidy worth PHP5,000 to PHP8,000 for April and May to help them cope with the Covid-19 crisis, pursuant to Republic Act (RA) 11469 or the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act.
The original number of SAP beneficiaries, as stated under RA 11469, is 18 million.
The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases, however, has agreed with Duterte to extend the financial assistance to five million more poor families, bringing the total number of SAP recipients to 23 million.
Duterte, however, said not all 23 million indigent families could benefit from the implementation of the second phase of the SAP because government still lacks funds.
He noted that the government has limited funds because tax collection fell short since he imposed strict quarantine rules last March to stop the further spread of Covid-19.
He explained that his government has failed to collect taxes because of the temporary stoppage of operations of some businesses amid the health crisis in the country.
All SAP beneficiaries, including the additional five million low-income households, will get the first tranche of emergency subsidies.
Interior Secretary Eduardo Año told Duterte that 97 percent of poor families have received the first wave of payouts. (ia/PNA)