The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has reduced the number of its targeted beneficiaries under the government’s Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) by 800,000, from 1.3 million to 500,000.
This was disclosed by DSWD officer-in-charge Undersecretary Edu Punay during Saturday’s News Forum at Dapo Restobar in Quezon City.
Punay said that the original 1.3 million beneficiaries were revalidated following observations that it was already “outdated” and the COVID-19 pandemic not taken into account.
Edu said only 500,000 out of the 1.3 million were tagged as “poor” and therefore, eligible for the 4Ps subsidies.
He said those removed from the 4Ps list would be accommodated in the Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) and receive P15,000 in livelihood assistance to start a business.
The 4Ps was institutionalized under the Republic Act No. 11310 signed by then President Rodrigo Duterte in 2019.
The program has a target of 4.4 million beneficiaries every year.
Meanwhile, the DSWD sought assistance from the anti-cybercrime divisions of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) and the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) to investigate the spread of “wrong information,” which drove people to the DSWD National Capital Region (NCR) office to apply for the SLP.
On Friday, senior citizens, solo parents, and students trooped to the DSWD-NCR office after receiving information that application for the SLP was scheduled on that day, officials told them there was no such activity for the day.
Nonetheless, Edu said they distributed SLP forms to obtain the applicants’ basic information.
He explained that the SLP was designed as an “exit program” for 4Ps graduates to allow them to have a sustainable livelihood once their monthly subsidies were stopped.
Meanwhile, Edu said the DSWD’s Facebook account was possibly hacked.
“Ito ang dahilan kung bakit may mga hindi pangkaraniwang post doon na hindi nauugnay sa Ahensiya. Humihingi kami ng paumanhin para sa anumang abala na maaaring naidulot nito,” the DSWD said.
“Patuloy ngayon ang imbestigasyon at pagsasaayos para muling mabawi ang Facebook page ng FO NCR. Nakikipag-ugnayan na rin ang DSWD sa kaukulang mga Ahensya ng gobyerno para sa imbestigasyon sa insidente.
Sa kabila naman nito, tinitiyak ng DSWD na hindi maaapektuhan ang pagbibigay ng serbisyo ng FO NCR sa ating mga kliyenteng nangangailangan sa Metro Manila,” the agency added.