The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) nodded Tuesday (August 25) to President Duterte’s directive to submit an accounting of the P207.6 billion earmarked for the implementation of the first and second tranche distributions of emergency cash subsidies under the national government’s Social Amelioration Program (SAP).
DSWD Undersecretary Rene Glen Paje said the agency is ready to submit its expenditure report on SAP.
“Malugod po na tinatanggap ng DSWD ang kautusan ito ng ating Pangulo na iaccount ang nagamit na pondo para sa COVID-19 response. Ito po ay nararapat lamang para maipakita ang transparency at accountability ng mga ahensyang nagpatupad ng programa laban sa pandemya na COVID-19,” he said in a virtual press briefing in response to the Manila Bulletin’s query. (We welcome the order of our President to account the funds spent for COVID-19 response. It is but proper to show transparency and accountability of the various agencies that implemented programs against COVID-19 pandemic)
He disclosed that the DSWD has been given P207.6 billion for the first and second phase implementation of SAP. Of the total amount, P197 billion had been released by the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) in tranches on April 2, April 16, and June 24, while P10.6 billion came from the re-aligned budget of the DSWD “to support the necessary budgetary requirements of the program.”
“Dahil sa malaking pondo na ito, sinigurado natin na mapupunta ang ayuda sa tunay na nangangailangan ito po ang dahilan kung bakit masusi ang isinagawa nating validation process ang DSWD,” Paje said.
(Because of the huge budget allocated for this, we ensure that the cash aid is given to the rightful beneficiaries, this is the reason why the DSWD is conducting strict validation process.)
“Katuwang ang ating partners sa direct at digital schemes ay patuloy na nagtutulungan para maihatid ang ayuda sa ating mga benepisyaryo. Kami ay nakatuon sa layuning matapos ang pamamahagi ng ayuda at magpagsilbihan ang mamamayan na nangangailangan,” he said.
(We closely coordinate with our partners in direct and digital schemes to ensure the delivery of cash aid to the beneficiaries. We focus on our goal to complete the distribution of cash aid and serve our people who are in need.)
According to the August 10 report released by the DBM, the government earmarked P376.57 billion to various government agencies to assist their efforts to address the coronavirus pandemic.
The report said the DSWD got the biggest chunk of the national government’s COVID-19 fund releases with P200.97 billion.