Mayor Isko bares rehab plans for MSMEs affected by COVID-19 pandemic

Maris Federez   •   October 28, 2021   •   135

Manila Mayor Isko Moreno Domagoso on Thursday bared his plan on how to rehabilitate thousands of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) that were affected by the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.

These MSMEs were forced to close down and lay off millions of workers as a result of the crisis.

“Ramdam ko ang hirap na dinanas ng milyong manggagawang nawalan ng trabaho dahil sa pandemya. Paano natin sila ibabangon? We have a plan. And it is similar to what I did in Manila,” Moreno said in one of his rounds in the province of Pampanga.

Moreno believes local government units (LGUs) can never go wrong with investing in housing, education, and health just like what he did in Manila.

“We know that by investing in housing, at least, the multiplier effect is 17 times, so your peso will go 17 times much longer in housing. That has never been done in the Philippines in the past,” explained Moreno.

Moreno said rehabilitating MSMEs under his administration will be similar to having a “Marshall Plan” which helped European countries in their economic recovery in the aftermath of World War II.

Moreno’s version of the plan, however, is two-pronged.

The first is the partnering of LGUs with national government agencies such as the Departments of Trade and Industry and Agriculture, Land Bank, and Development Bank of the Philippines and drawing up a plan on how to help MSMEs re-start their business.

“The other part of the Marshall Plan is giving out loans, through LGUs, using their Mandanas incremental windfall to assist MSMEs through low-interest loans. Ang tawag po diyan ay Creative Financial Engineering or ISKOnomics 102.” said Moreno.

Moreno pointed out that as a result of the Mandanas Ruling by the Supreme Court in 2018 (and confirmed in 2019) the IRA (internal revenue allotment) was programmed to increase by 55 percent in the 2022 budget, reaching Php1.08 trillion or 4.8 percent of the country’s gross domestic product compared to 3.5 percent of GDP in 2021.

“Kesa magastos sa kung saan-saan lang, hihikayatin ko, sakaling maging pangulo ako, ang mga LGU na gamitin ang dagdag na kita sa maraming taon. Isanla nila ang IRA sa DBP at maski pribadong mga banko na maraming pera ngayon dahil mahina ang loans dahil naman sa walang negosyo, para magtayo ng pabahay, iskwelahang kumpleto sa computers, at ospital,” said Moreno.

“Iyan ang solusyon ni Mayor Isko-Doc Willie. Tulong sa tao, hindi pulitika. Bilis aksyon. Dahil hindi tayo sumusuko sa pandemya. Hinaharap natin ang problema na buo ang loob; nag-iisip; pinag-aaralan; at kayang-kayang gawin,” said Moreno.

The Philippine Statistics Authority has yet to come out with the number of MSMEs that closed shop in 2020 at the height of the lockdowns.

As of March 2021, the PSA placed the number of unemployed Filipinos at 3.44 million. —/mbmf

Robredo pays tribute to Baguio City frontliners

Maris Federez   •   December 6, 2021

Presidential aspirant Vice President Leni Robredo on Monday (December 6) led the recognition of frontliners in Baguio City who relentlessly give their service to the community amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I am giving tribute to the men and women who fought the pandemic. I am giving tribute to all those who worked behind all the successes that Baguio achieved over the years,” Robredo said.

“Alam ko na kayo ang isa sa mga best performing LGUs in our battle against the pandemic particularly on contact tracing with Mayor Benjamin Magalong in the frontline,” she added.

Robredo said that the main goal of her visit is to thank her supporters in the province who gave her a warm welcome despite the cold weather.

Robredo then visited the Good Shepherd Convent to lead the opening of the Leni-Kiko Headquarters. —/mbmf (from the report of UNTV Correspondent John Paul Alvarado)

Corporate parties sa COVID Alert Level 2 areas limitado lang sa 50% capacity – DILG

Robie de Guzman   •   December 6, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Nagpaalala ang Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) sa publiko na limitado lang sa 50% ng venue capacity ang bilang ng mga pinapayagang lumahok sa corporate gatherings ngayong holiday season.

Ayon kay DILG Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya, alinsunod ito sa patakarang ipinatutupad ng Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases para sa mga lugar na nasa COVID-19 Alert Level 2.

“Kung nasa alert level 2 po ang isang lugar, ang mga ganiyang klaseng christmas parties is 50% capacity of the venue and plus 10% of the venue, if may safety seal ang lugar na iyon,” ani Malaya.

“Aside from the venue capacity ay kailangan pong sumunod sa minimum public health standards. Kailangan pong naka-face mask at may social distancing,” dagdag pa niya.

Nasa Alert Level 2 ang buong Pilipinas dahil sa patuloy na pagbaba ng kaso ng COVID-19.

Babala ng DILG, maaaring masuspindi ang operasyon ng isang establisimyento na ginawaran ng safety seal kapag lumabag sa patakaran.

“Kung hindi po susunod ang mga establishment na magiging host nitong chistmas parties na ito, pwede pong i-revoke ang safety seal nila o kaya isuspinde ang kanilang business permit for failing to follow IATF rules and regulations,” ani Malaya.

Samantala, inirerekomenda naman ng Department of Health (DOH) na gawin sa outdoor venues ang salu-salo o pagtitipon ngayong holiday season upang maiwasan ang hawaan ng COVID-19.

Ayon sa DOH, mas malaki ang tiyansa’ng magkaroon ng hawaan sa mga kulob na lugar at walang maayos na bentilasyon.

Dapat ring seguruhing may hand sanitizing area sa venue at nasusunod ang protocol sa pagsusuot ng face mask at physical distancing.

Mas mainam ring gawin na lamang online ang selebrasyon upang maiwasan ang direct contact at posibleng exposure sa COVID-19. (mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Aileen Cerrudo)

DOH: Philippines now classified at minimal risk for COVID-19

Robie de Guzman   •   December 6, 2021

MANILA, Philippines ­– The whole of the Philippines is now classified at minimal risk for novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19), the Department of Health (DOH) said on Monday.

DOH Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said most of the regions in the country have showed decreased average daily attack rate compared with previous weeks.

“Nationally, we remain at minimal risk case classification with a negative two-week growth rate at negative 57% and a low risk average daily attack rate at point 67 cases for every 100,000 individuals,” Vergeire said in a press briefing.

“The National health systems capacity is at low risk. All regions showed decrease in average daily attack rates compared to the previous 3-4 weeks and remained at minimal to low risk case classification,” she added.

Vergeire noted that from the more than 900 average daily cases from November 22 to 29, it declined to an average of 544 per day nationwide.

She said this is lower than the figure recorded in August 2020 and April 2021 when the Philippines reached the peak of cases.

The National Capital Region also remains at low-risk classification with 112 average daily cases recorded from November 29 to December 5.

Death cases also decreased to three during the period of December 1 to 5.

Vergeire said infection rates in most of the regions have been steadily declining compared with previous weeks.

But she urged the public not to be complacent especially during this time when some people gather to celebrate the holiday season.

Vergeire said the public should continue adhering to health protocols as the threat of COVID-19 remains. (with details from Correspondent Aiko Miguel)

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