Lack of liquidation delays release of second tranche of gov't pandemic aid

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jun 18 2020 10:58 AM

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MANILA — The Philippine government will not release the second batch of assistance for the poorest families in the country to cope with the coronavirus pandemic until an entire region liquidates the first tranche of cash aid.

The liquidation is needed to ensure that only one member of a family received the P5,000 to P8,000 aid, said Social Welfare Assistant Secretary Joseline Niwane. 

"Marami na po ang mga LGUs na nag-fully liquidate. However, 'pag hindi po siya buo sa region — kunyari ang miyembro sa region ay 7 provinces at kung nagbigay lang po ay 5 — hindi po sila puwedeng mag-re-book," she told ABS-CBN's TeleRadyo. 

(Many local government units have fully liquidated. However, if it's not the whole region — for example only 5 out of 7 member provinces finished — they cannot re-book funds.)
 
Niwane said some 17 million families would get the second aid tranche, including: 

- 5 million families nationwide who appealed their exclusion in the first tranche; 
- 12 million families in areas that were under enhanced community quarantine as of May 2, like Metro Manila, Region 3 except Aurora province, Calabarzon, Benguet, Pangasinan, Iloilo, Cebu, Bacolod, Davao City, Albay and Zamboanga City. 

The social welfare department will lead the distribution of the second tranche with the help of police and soldiers, unlike the first tranche that local officials handed out, said Niwane. 

Those with inquiries about the social amelioration program may call hotline 16545, she said.