MANILA — Less than 200,000 households have been delisted from the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps), the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) said Tuesday.
At a budget briefing before the House Appropriations Committee, DSWD Secretary Erwin Tulfo said that 187,613 households have been delisted, while the department is still validating over 1.3 million Filipino families who could be removed from their list of beneficiaries.
An association of 4Ps beneficiaries had told DSWD that as many as 40 percent of them should remain the program.
Tulfo said he met with the said association right after news of the delisting broke, adding that their figure of 1.3 million was based on a 2019 study, which they are now cross-checking with other lists.
He added that those who will be delisted may be absorbed by other aid programs, such as the Sustainable Livelihood Program and Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situations (AICS).
Tulfo explained that under the rules, there are 6 conditions to be delisted: that the last child in the family has reached 19 years old and has graduated high school; the household has been in the program for 7 years, if the household turn non-poor in the latest assignment; and if the household waived their entitlement and if they are found to have committed violations.
However, he also said DSWD will not able to generate savings even if it delists 4Ps beneficiaries.
The secretary added that for 2023, 4Ps will get P115.61 billion, and will still cover 4.4 million households because those who will be delisted will simply be replaced.
"Iyong current list po natin is 4.4 (million), kung ide-delist 1.3 (million), 1.3 (million) rin po ipapasok natin. Ang misconception nung una ay magkakaroon po ng savings. Wala pong savings, dahil may aalisin tayo, may ipapasok po tayo," he said.
For his part, DSWD Director for Finance Management Service Wayne Belizar explained why the budget of the program increased but the number of beneficiaries remained the same.
"The P7-billion increase is predominantly caused by provision for the payment of deficiency in 2017 and 2018 grants in the amount of P4.3 billion... We are (also) planning to increase as well the municipal link, city link ratio to the households or the families that are being monitored for case management purposes," he said.