Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Secretary Rolando Bautista apologized on Tuesday (August 18) to the public for their failure to complete the second tranche distribution of emergency cash subsidies under the national government’s Social Amelioration Program (SAP) by August 15.
The DSWD Chief said they are exhausting all means and they are closely coordinating with the local government units (LGUs) and partner-financial service providers (FSP) to ensure that the remaining 1.1 million SAP 2 recipients will be served.
“Una sa lahat , nais po namin humingi ng paumanhin na hindi natapos noong Agosto 15 ang pamamahagi ng SAP sa ating mga benepisyaryo,” he said in a virtual press briefing.
He cited the failure of the local government units (LGUs) to upload the Social Amelioration Card (SAC) forms of more than 300, 000 SAP 2 beneficiaries, and the failure of over 200,000 SAP beneficiaries to supply their personal information, like their mobile phone numbers as among the reasons that delayed the distribution of cash aid.
“Bagamat ninanais natin na ang pamimigay ng ayuda alinsunod sa ating target (As much as we would like to distribute the cash aid based on our target schedule), nasa mahigit 300,000 na mga pangalan ng benepisyaryo (over 300,000 names of the beneficiaries) ang kinakailangan pang maupload ng mga LGUs (haye yet to be uploaded by the LGUs), habang mahigit (while over) 200,000 naman binalik sa mga (have been returned to the ) LGUs upang muling ivalidate (for validation anew) dahil kulang sa mga (due to lack of personal) information, gaya ng (like the) cell phone number, middle name, birthday ng mga benepisyaryo (of the beneficiaries),” Bautista said.
He said they are giving the LGUs until tomorrow, August 19 to upload the SAC forms of over 300,000 SAP beneficiaries so that the DSWD can immediately process their entitled SAP subsidy as provided for under Republic Act No. 11469 or the Bayanihan to Heal As One Act.
He also explained that some manual payouts have been affected by the government’s reimposition of modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ), while the distribution of SAP 2 subsidy has been delayed because many DSWD personnel have to submit themselves to self-quarantine because of their exposure to some COVID-19 patients.
“Sa kasalukuyan (Currently), nasa 91 percent na po tayo ng pamamahagi ng SAP sa lahat ng benepisyaryo (the distribution of SAP to all beneficiaries is now at 91 percent). Patuloy po na pinagsisikapan ng DSWD (The DSWD continues to exhaust all means to ensure) na matapos ang pamamahagi ng ayuda sa mga natitirang benepisyaryo (that the distribution of the cash aid to the remaining beneficiaries will be completed) sa pakikipagtulungan (in partnership) sa ating mga (with the ) LGUs at (and) financial service providers,” Bautista said.
He said almost 13 million beneficiaries of the 14.1 million targeted to receive the second tranche in 11 areas have been covered by SAP 2, receiving over P77 billion worth of cash aid.
Included in the agency’s latest list of SAP 2 beneficiaries are 1.38 million beneficiaries of Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps); 5.69 million low-income, and non-4Ps recipients; 3.11 million “waitlisted”, low-income, and non-4Ps households nationwide; 1.58 million “waitlisted” beneficiaries from the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) areas; and around 124,448 Transport Network Vehicle Service (TNVS) and public utility vehicles (PUVs) drivers.
Bautista said for those beneficiaries who fail to claim their cash aid during their payment schedule, they can cash out their subsidy within 90 days or use their restricted transactional accounts to pay their water and power bills or any services or products availed in establishments using electronic payments.
He said they are coordinating with the FSPs and the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) to help address the long queues in payout centers and expedite the distribution of SAP 2 aid.