AFP and PNP will help speed up SAP distribution —Palace

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President Rodrigo Roa Duterte witnesses the Change of Command Ceremony between outgoing Philippine Army Commander Lieutenant General Rolando Bautista and newly-installed Philippine Army Commander Major General Macairog Alberto at the Philippine Army Officers’ Clubhouse in Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City on October 15, 2018. SIMEON CELI JR./PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

President Rodrigo Duterte expects that using the police and the military to assist the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) in implementing the Social Amelioration Program (SAP) will speed up the distribution of cash aid to indigent families.

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a virtual briefer that it was Duterte’s idea to tap the military and the police for the implementation of 2nd wave of the national government’s cash aid program.

”Naniniwala po ang Presidente na kung tutulong ang mga sundalo [at pulis], mas magiging mabilis po ang proseso,” he said.

[The President believes that with the help of soldiers and policemen, there will be a speedy (distribution of cash assistance.)]

Both the AFP and the PNP have expressed their readiness to help in the distribution of emergency cash subsidies for the poor households affected by the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.

Roque clarified that local government units (LGUs) would still have a role in the implementation of SAP.

“Hindi naman ibig sabihin ay itsapuwera na ang mga barangay, siyempre mayroon pa rin pong importansiya dahil kakilala nila iyong mga tao sa lugar,” the spokesperson clarified. 

[That does not mean we are not asking for village officials’ help. We still need them because they know their constituents in their localities.]

Duterte on May 11 once again delegated the DSWD as the sole agency to implement SAP following mounting complaints against supposed irregularities in the release of payouts for indigent families.

Duterte said the DSWD may also seek the military’s help in distributing the cash aid.

Roque said the latest move was only meant to ensure that the financial aid would be given to the rightful beneficiaries of SAP.

“Isipin ninyo na lang ‘yung mga nandadaya diyan, ‘yung mga kumakana diyan ay maiiwasan dahil wala na pong hihingi ng hati doon sa mga tao na binibigay sa mga beneficiaries,” explained Roque.

[Just think of those who are committing irregularities and are getting a cut from SAP beneficiaries.]