Makabayan solons prod PBBM to make P10,000 'ayuda' for Pinoys a reality

For most netizens, the P10,000 cash assistance or "ayuda" is a meme. For the Makabayan bloc, the P10,000 ayuda is necessary for the survival of poor Filipinos.

(Mari Gimenez/ Unsplash)

Militant party-list solons Rep. Arlene Brosas of Gabriela, Rep. France Castro of ACT Teachers, and Rep. Raoul Manuel of Kabataan bared on Thursday, Nov. 24 the filing of House Joint Resolution (HJR) No.13, which urges President Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. "to urgently implement a P10,000 cash subsidy or ayuda to 12.4 million families or the bottom half of total Filipino families".

The trio is seeking the one-time cash aid "amid record-high inflation, depressed wages and series of calamities".

In the two-page HJR, the leftist solons described the government's targeted cash transfer (TCT) program, which doles out P500 monthly, as being "worth less than a day's wage in the National Capital Region (NCR) and can hardly augment family incomes which are eroded by the incessant price spikes".

The measure was filed before the House of Representatives Tuesday.

Brosas, in a virtual press conference Thursday, said, "We join the Filipinos in urging the Marcos Jr. administration to urgently implement a P10,000 cash subisdy or ayuda to 12.4 million Filipino families who are heavily affected by the record-high inflation, depressed wages, and series of calamities."

Makabayan made the call ahead of the Bicameral Conference Committee meeting on the proposed P5.268-trillion national budget for 2023, where House and Senate members are expected to finalize the details of the budget bill.

"Habang tumataas ang presyo ng bilihin at batayang serbisyo, nananatiling mumo ang sahod sa buong bansa (While there has been a continued surge in prices of basic goods and services, salary levels in the country remain low)," added Brosas.

Filipinos have made fun online of the P10,000 ayuda, which was apparently spun from an earlier proposal by then-Taguig-Pateros 1st district Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano for the national government to create savings for the purpose of distributing P10,000 to Filipino families as cash aid.

Needless to say, the P10,000 ayuda took a life of its own on the Internet.

"There is an urgent need to substantially increase and augment the cash subsidy under the government's program to provide Filipino families a breather from the barrage of price increases," the HJR further said.