15-day deadline eyed for second SAP payout

Romina Cabrera - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) is expecting a quicker distribution of the second tranche of the  social amelioration program (SAP) cash assistance for the month of May.

The government is planning to give local government units (LGUs) 15 days to complete the distribution of the emergency cash subsidy to families affected by the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ), DILG Secretary Eduardo Año said yesterday.

“Sa tingin ko naman alam na natin sa listahan kung sinu-sino ang mga bibigyan, kaya inaasahang magiging mas mabilis na ito. Siguro kung dumating na yung pera sa LGUs kasama yung social welfare officers, matagal na yung 15 days na hindi matapos (I believe, those in the list have been identified and we expect the distribution to be faster this time. Once the money and the social welfare arrive at the LGUs, 15 days is more than enough to finish the distribution),” Año said in an interview over radio station dzBB.

The distribution of the first tranche of SAP in April was marred with chaos and complaints as a majority of residents claimed they were qualified based on the requirement set by the government, but they were not included in the list of the beneficiaries.

It took some LGUs over a month to complete the distribution of the cash assistance. Other LGUs were reprimanded for violating social distancing as the benificiaries simultaneously flock at venues where the distribution was conducted.

Año said LGUs could already have resolved the obstacles they faced during the distribution of the first tranche and a faster payout is expected this time.

He said LGUs are vital in helping the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) distribute the cash subsidy, especially if the payout is conducted manually.

Aside from the LGUs, he cited the military and the police for helping the DSWD ensure the cash assistance could reach the beneficiaries, especially in remote and rebel-infested areas.

Some five million families will receive the second cash aid intended for families displaced by the ECQ that was imposed by the government to contain the coronavirus disease 2019 or COVID-19.


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