The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) said Thursday, Oct. 22, that all-out medical assistance has been given to their wounded field workers who were attacked by gunmen in Bongao, Tawi-Tawi last week.
DSWD Undersecretary Rene Glen Paje said the hospital expenses of Niezel Ladjauddin Asakil, Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) OIC Provincial Link in Tawi-Tawi, and Kevin Pon, 4Ps Municipal Link, will be shouldered by the agency.
“Nagkaroon sila ng medical asistance at nabigyan po natin ng guarantee letter upang ang kanilang expenses o gastusin sa ospital ay sagot na ng ahensiya,” he said during the virtual Laging Handa briefing.
(They have been given medical assistance and guarantee letters so that their hospital expenses are shouldered by the agency.)
The DSWD official noted that they received a report that one of the wounded 4Ps field workers will be discharged from the hospital.
“Ang huling balita po ay mukhang lalabas na sa ospital ang isang naging biktima dito at maayos naman po ang kalagayan,” Paje said.
(The latest news is that one of the victims is in good condition and will already be discharged from the hospital.)
Asakil and Pon were attacked by gunmen along the highway of Barangay Lapid-Lapid while on their way home following a five-day payout in the coastal municipality of Panglima Sugala in Tawi-Tawi on Oct. 12.
In a virtual press briefing on Oct. 20, DSWD spokesperson Irene Dumlao said they are closely coordinating with the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) to ensure that the necessary assistance will be fully extended to their wounded field workers.
Through its Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situations (AICS), the DSWD already extended assistance to its two program implementers, she said.
Dumlao expressed the DSWD’s recognition of “the efforts of field workers to deliver the necessary assistance to 4Ps and other program beneficiaries despite the many threats to their health and safety.”
Under AICS, individuals and families in crisis situations are expected to receive a provision of integrated services, which include financial, medical, burial, cash, food, educational, and transportation assistance depending on their needs.