LGUs barred from requiring voter’s ID to get aid during Luzon lockdown

Arianne Merez, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 25 2020 01:14 PM

Volunteers distribute goods in Barangay Batis, San Juan City on March 23, 2020. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

MANILA- Local government units are barred from requiring their residents to present a voter’s ID to avail of relief goods during the Luzon-wide lockdown, the Department of the Interior and Local Government said Wednesday, following reports that some barangay officials were asking for the card before handing out aid.

Public officials should distribute food packs per household and not on an individual basis, DILG Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said.

“Bawal po yan [pag-require ng voter’s ID]. Panahon po ngayon ng tulong, panahon po ngayon ng pamamahala, ng magandang leadership. Hindi po pulitika ngayon,” Malaya said in a televised news briefing.

(That’s not allowed. It’s the time to help, a time of governance, of good leadership. It’s not the time for politics.)

Local government units across Luzon have been distributing relief goods since the national government imposed a month-long lockdown to halt the spread of the new coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

The lockdown meant strict home confinement in all households, suspension of transportation lines, regulation of provision for food and essential health services, and heightened presence of uniformed personnel to enforce isolation procedures.

To help local government units, Malaya said the national government would make available some P275 billion to augment the needs of cities and towns covered by the lockdown.

The enhanced community quarantine in Luzon, an island group of over 50 million people, will remain in effect until April 12.