The Department of Budget and Management said Monday that the Philippine government is providing cash aid to 22.9 million people affected by the enhanced community quarantine in Metro Manila and 4 surrounding provinces.
“Low income” earners in NCR and Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal provinces, which are under ECQ, will be covered by the “special amelioration assistance” until April 4, said Budget Secretary Wendel Avisado.
Senator Christopher Bong Go earlier Monday said around P23 billion in funds are available for the planned assistance, which may be handed in cash or in kind.
Avisado said the aid would be sourced from the “remaining unutilized balances of Bayanihan 2,” the Philippines’ second pandemic stimulus package.
He said the latest assistance would be “definitely lower than what we have given during the Bayanihan 1.” In 2020, 18 million families received P5,000 to P8,000 in cash aid each from the government to assist them in coping with the pandemic.
Avisado claimed he “cannot say more” because the proposal was under review by the office of President Rodrigo Duterte.
“But definitely ang sinisuguro po natin, meron pong inihandang ayuda ang ating national government para sa mga naapektuhan ng ECQ sa NCR Plus bubbles,” he said.