First day of NCR ayuda distribution smooth- Año

Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año said on Thursday, Aug. 12, that the cash aid (ayuda) distribution for the qualified recipients in Metro Manila went smoothly amid stricter rules on health and safety protocols.

In a Viber message, Año stated that the hassle-free ayuda distribution for low-income individuals is expected to be the same in the coming days.

Año then appealed to the public for their full cooperation to assure “he safety of all’ and for the local government units (LGUs) to comply with the 15 days deadline to dispense the financial assistance to low-income individuals in the National Capital Region (NCR).

Despite the 15- day deadline for the ayuda distribution, Año may grant the extension requests of concerned LGUs due to the extreme difficulty in the financial aid distribution with the far more dangerous coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) Delta variant already lurking in the country more so that the cases nation had reached over 12,000 on Wednesday, August 11.

Metro Manila was placed under the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) from August 6 to 20 to slow down the spread of the virus that has been on the upswing recently.

Each Metro Manila qualified resident will receive P1,000 cash assistance with every household getting a maximum of P4,000.

With numerous complaints of non-inclusion in the low-income roster, Año pointed out that they may take their case to the appeal and grievance committee of their respective barangays with the mayor having the authority to adjust and add on to the list of beneficiaries after validating who among are qualified to get the national government’s aid.

In the August 9 briefing with the President, Año said the DILG had requested a P278 million supplemental budget to ensure that all qualified Metro Manila cash aid recipients receive the national government’s ayuda.

In requesting for the additional budget, Año explained that the NCR ayuda for the low income individuals severely affected by the pandemic has reached P11.172 billion.

The President earlier approved the release of P10.89 billion cash aid distribution for the NCR recipients. (Chito A. Chavez)