6 NCR LGUs meet aid payout deadline: DILG - TrueID

6 NCR LGUs meet aid payout deadline: DILG

Philippine News AgencySeptember 1, 2021

(PNA photo by Avito Dalan)

MANILA – Six local government units (LGUs) in Metro Manila have already completed the deadline for the payout of cash assistance to low-income beneficiaries affected by the recent enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) have been distributed by LGUs in the region, Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año said on Wednesday.

In a phone interview, Año said these include Quezon City, Manila, Caloocan City, Pasig City, Malabon City, and Navotas City.

Año said as of Wednesday morning, 95 percent of a total of PHP11.2 billion fund for the emergency cash assistance or PHP10.63 billion have been distributed to some 10.6 million eligible beneficiaries.

Sa mga hindi pa nakatapos ng distribution, nag request sila ng extension and we are granting then 10 more days, that's up to September 10 (For those who have not yet finished the aid distribution, they requested an extension and we are granting them 10 more days or until September 10),” Año said.

He said some LGUs reported incidents where employees and beneficiaries contracted Covid-19, prompting the suspension of payout activities in some of their areas of jurisdiction.

'Yung cases dito sa Metro Manila, syempre with a high positivity rate, naging challenge yun for LGUs. Hindi na nag show up 'yung mga qualified beneficiaries for some other reasons and because of the Delta variant. Hindi mo din pwede bilisan or madaliin kung merong community transmission dun sa ibang lugar at hindi pa talaga sila (beneficiaries) makakalabas (Metro Manila's high Covid-19 positivity rate prompting an increase in cases has been a challenge for LGUs. The qualified beneficiaries did not show up for some other reasons and because of the Delta variant. We also cannot rush it because some areas have a community transmission and other beneficiaries cannot leave their homes yet)," Año added.

In a Laging Handa briefing on Wednesday, DILG spokesperson, Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said this is so far the fastest pace of cash distribution since the government started the payout of the emergency cash assistance.

Malaya also explained that the LGUs were given the authority to identify who among their constituents who appealed before their respective grievance and complaints committee can avail of unclaimed cash aid.

May ilan na nagtangkang magkaroon ng scam gaya ng nangyari sa Pasig (City) na hindi naman pala taga Pasig ngunit nagkeke-claim sa Pasig (There were some who were involved in a scam like what happened in Pasig (City) -- who are non-Pasig residents but claimed to be from Pasig),’’ Malaya said.

He said that there was also an instance where a family claimed cash aid twice using the identities of their parents.

Contact tracing

Malaya, meanwhile, said President Rodrigo Duterte granted the PHP1.7 billion budget requested by the DILG for the extension of service of the contact tracers up to December this year.

He also called on LGUs to “maximize’’ their contact tracers after receiving reports that some of the more than 2,600 contact tracers in Metro Manila were assigned for vaccination activities.

Malaya stressed that the contact tracers should be utilized in finding close contacts in areas under granular lockdowns and should not be assigned for other purposes.

On the issue pertaining to the use of rapid antigen tests to improve the country’s coronavirus disease-2019 (Covid-19) testing capacity, Malaya emphasized that the department has complied with the Department of Health (DOH) policy and several resolutions of the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF).

Based on the DOH and IATF regulations, Malaya explained that rapid antigen tests may be used for the confirmation of suspected or probable Covid-19 cases and their close contacts as the LGUs were urged to utilize this method for case surveillance and active case findings. (PNA)

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