P200 million given to Benguet folk for social services

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LA TRINIDAD, Benguet – Some P200 million was distributed by concerned government agencies to thousands of identified beneficiaries equitably distributed to the province’s 140 barangays for various social services for them to be able to cope with the heavy impact of the prevailing community quarantine to contain the spread of the dreaded Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) provincewide.

Benguet Caretaker Congressman and Anti-Crime and Terrorism through Community Involvement and Support (ACT-CIS) Party-list Rep. Eric Go Yap reported that bulk of such assistance amounting to about P120 million came from the labor department’s Tulong Panghanapbuhay Para Sa Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers (TUPAD) program, P40 million came from the health department’s medical assistance for indigent patients (MAIP) and some P30 million was provided under the social welfare department’s Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situation (AICS).

Earlier, Congressman Yap distributed P30 million financial assistance to over 5,500 beneficiaries equally distributed in the province’s 140 barangays, while the succeeding wave of assistance amounting to P90 million is now underway in the different municipalities for distribution before Christmas.

Previously, the equivalent of the first wave of financial assistance distributed to the beneficiaries was 10 days of work computed at the prevailing minimum wage of P350 daily but the same was increased to 15 days thus recent recipients got P5,200 each.

The lawmaker explained that the number of the latest wave of recipients was estimated at over 15,000 and since most of the displaced workers are based in the capital town, it was provided with some 3,000 slots while the remaining 12 municipalities were provided with 3,000 slots each under the aforesaid program of the labor department.

According to him, the assistance this year is just part of his overall plan to increase the frequency of the assistance by next year once the P4.5 trillion annual budget of the national government will be signed into law by President Rodrigo R. Duterte before the end of the year.

Congressman Yap pointed out that one of his objectives in lobbying for the provision of additional funds from the various government agencies is to ensure that each of the more than 100,000 households in the province will get the appropriate assistance from the government before his term as legislative caretaker ends in 2022.

Yap assured the people of Benguet he will continue to work extra hard in sourcing funds for concerned government agencies to implement priority high-impact development projects and enhance the delivery of basic services for them to feel that the government is ready to provide the needed assistance for them to hurdle the challenges posed by the difficulty of life in the countryside. By HENT

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