President Rodrigo Duterte plans to ask Congress for assistance as funds for the national government’s financial assistance for COVID-19 depletes.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque made the announcement as the second tranche of the Social Amelioration Program (SAP) begins to roll out.
“We likewise confirm that PRRD (President Rodrigo Roa Duterte) will ask the assistance of Congress in the finding of additional funding for the second tranche of the Social Amelioration Program to complete the rollout of aid to poor and low-income families,” said Roque. He also confirmed that only families in areas under enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) will be receiving the second tranche of SAP due to the limited funds allocated by the Congress.
Just last week, Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III cancelled a plan to seek from Congress a supplemental budget for the government’s ₱1.49 trillion socioeconomic stimulus strategy this year against COVID-19.
“We have to be very careful in asking for a supplemental budget because actually we don’t have supplemental revenue. So we will strive to live within the ₱4.1 trillion budget this year and so far, we have been okay. We will be okay with that,” said Dominguez.
On the other hand, Budget Secretary Wendel Avisado was instructed to look at the budget and determine what can be realigned from the 2020 Budget to fund the government’s financial aid program.