By Tara Yap
ILOILO CITY — The Philippine National Police (PNP) in the Western Visayas region has recorded 87 complaints of alleged anomalies over the national government’s cash aid for those affected by the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) as of May 13.
“In this time of pandemic, corruption has no place in Western Visayas,” said Brig. Gen. Rene Pamuspusan, regional director of Police Regional Office (PRO-6).
He said PRO-6 is expecting more complaints of alleged irregularities in the distribution of the cash aid under the Social Amelioration Program (SAP) of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).
The DSWD regional office handed over the SAP budget to local government units (LGUs) in Aklan, Antique , Capiz, Guimaras, Iloilo, and Negros Occidental provinces as well as the highly urbanized cities of Iloilo and Bacolod.
From the LGU level, the SAP distribution was facilitated by barangay (village) officials in each city or town.
While it is the PRO-6 that receives the complaints, it is forwarded to the PNP’s Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG-6) for formal investigation and subsequent filing of charges in court.
Lt. Col. Gilbert Gorero, PRO-6 acting spokesman, said that four people have been charged in the region for SAP-related anomalies.
Three are from Isabela town, Negros Occidental province. Facing charges of graft and corruption are the barangay captain (village chief) and the town’s social welfare officer. An individual is also facing charges for using falsified documents while another in Bacolod City is facing charges for falsifying documents.
PRO-6 and CIDG-6 are getting statements from witnesses in connection with the four other separate complaints on the SAP distribution in Capiz province.