Duterte signs law institutionalizing 4Ps

Robie de Guzman   •   May 23, 2019   •   3078

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte has signed a measure institutionalizing the government’s strategy in reducing national poverty.

Duterte signed the Republic Act 11310 or the “Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) Act” last April 17. A copy of the signed law was released by Malacañang on May 22.

The law aims to provide financial assistance to poor Filipino families that meet certain qualifications, to uplift marginalized sectors from poverty and to improve the quality of life for all.

Among those qualified for the program are farmers, fisherfolks, homeless families, indigenous peoples and those in the informal settler sector, and geographically isolated and disadvantaged areas including those without electricity.

Under the law, qualified poor household beneficiaries will be provided with conditional cash transfers for a maximum period of seven years to improve the health, nutrition and education aspect of their lives. The National Advisory Council may recommend a longer period under exceptional circumstances.

Qualified household beneficiaries on a nationwide basis shall be selected by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) using a standardized targeting system.

Standardized Targeting System, under the law, refers to a system identifying who and where the poor households are through the generation of a socio-economic database of poor households that is adopted by national government agencies and implemented by the DSWD.

The DSWD is tasked under the law to conduct a regular revalidation of beneficiary targeting every three years.

QUALIFICATIONS FOR ELIGIBLE BENEFICIARIES

To be eligible for the cash grants, household or families must meet the following criteria:

  • Classified as poor and near-poor based on the Standardized Targeting System and the poverty threshold issued by the Philippine Statistics Authority at the time of selection;
  • Have members who are newborns up to 18 years old as well as those who are pregnant at the time of registration;
  • Willing to comply with the conditions specified by this Act

The following schemes shall be observed in the implementation of conditional cash transfer:

  • Financial aid of not lower than P300 per child enrolled in daycare and elementary programs for a maximum of ten months per year;
  • Financial aid of not lower than P500 per child enrolled in junior high school for a maximum of 10 months per year;
  • Financial aid of not lower than P700 per child enrolled in senior high school each month for a maximum of 10 months per year;
  • Health and nutrition grant shall not be lower than P750 per month for a maximum of 12 months per year.

The law states that all qualified beneficiaries of 4Ps shall automatically be covered in the National Health Insurance Program (NHIP).

“The necessary funding for their coverage shall be sourced from revenue generated pursuant to Republic Act No. 10351, otherwise known as the “Sin Tax Reform Act of 2012,” the law stated.

For continued program eligibility, the law obliges all qualified household-beneficiaries to comply with the following conditions: pregnant women must avail of pre-natal services, give birth in a health facility and receive post-partum care and post-natal care for her newborn; children from newborn to five years old must receive regular preventive health and nutrition services, including check-ups and vaccinations; children aged one to 14 must avail of deworming pills at least twice a year;

Children five to 18 years old must attend elementary or secondary classes at least 85 percent of their time; at least one responsible person must attend family development sessions with DSWD, at least once a month.

Failure to comply with set conditions will subject the household-beneficiary to case management process which may lead to the termination of cash grants.

Any person who will be found falsifying their data or information in the registry to avail of the conditional cash transfer program may be imprisoned for a month up to a year or be fined with not less than P10,000 but not more than P100,000.

The 4Ps started during the time of former president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. It became the flagship anti-poverty program during the time of former President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino and was continued by President Duterte. (with details from Rosalie Coz)

Palace opposes Urban Dictionary definition of ‘Duterte’

Aileen Cerrudo   •   August 20, 2019

The Malacañang refuted the Urban Dictionary for defining ‘Duterte’ as ‘to scam, trick, or con.

During a press briefing on Tuesday (Aug 20), Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo will seek to counter the definition on the website.

“‘Duterte’ to us means honest, incorruptible, politically-willed person, courageous, selfless, honest, transparent and all good things…and other synonymous terms,” Panelo said.

The definition was uploaded by an unknown internet user one month ago. Urban Dictionary is crowd-sourced online dictionary for slang words and phrases.

Panelo suspects, the uploader might be a member of anti-Duterte groups.—AAC

Palace: Duterte in good health, went motorcycle-riding over the weekend

Robie de Guzman   •   August 19, 2019

File: President Rodrigo Duterte

MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang on Monday assured that President Rodrigo Duterte is in good health despite being out of the public eye for more than a week now.

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo made the statement amid concerns on Duterte’s health and absence in the past week.

He added that Duterte even went for a motorcycle ride in Davao City over the weekend.

“In fact, he shared to me yesterday, sabi nya, ‘Alam mo ba na I went out sa motorsiklo?’ Nag motorsiklo daw siya sa subdivision niya. Hindi ko na alam kung kahapon yun o the day before,” he said.

“It only shows na kung nakaka-motor siya, he’s in good health,” he added.

Duterte was last seen in public on August 9 when he attended a police event in Camp Crame in Quezon City.  

Panelo said that when not attending any public engagement, the chief executive deals with paperwork and private meetings.

“Ang sabi niya, marami siyang trabaho na mga papeles, binabasa niya isa-isa. Hindi siya makapirma ng hindi niya thoroughly reading these papers,” Panelo said.

“At the same time, meron siyang mga private meetings and courtesy call,” he added.

The president’s health has been a recurring issue given his age.

At 74, Duterte is the oldest to be elected Philippine president in history.

He previously revealed he was suffering from Barret’s esophagus or medically known as gastroesophageal reflux disease, as well as perpetual pain due to a spine injury and constipation. (with details from Rosalie Coz)

Duterte reactivates El Niño task force

Aileen Cerrudo   •   August 16, 2019

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte

President Rodrigo Duterte reactivated the El Niño task force this week after reports of recurrence of El Niño phenomenon.

The Memorandum No. 38, signed by Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea on Tuesday (Aug 13) aims to mitigate the effects of El Niño.

“Recent monitoring and analyses of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) – Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) indicate that the warm sea surface temperature fully developed into the El Niño phenomenon,” according to the memorandum.

READ: PAGASA: 17 provinces face drought due to El Niño

The task force will submit a monthly report to the president through the executive secretary on the implementation of the memorandum order.

PAGASA previously said the dry spell might continue until August.—AAC

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