Cayetano urges House to pass 10K Ayuda Bill
MANILA, Philippines — Taguig-Pateros Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano on Wednesday urged the House of Representatives to convene into a Committee of the Whole or initiate a special session to discuss the 10K Ayuda Bill that aims to provide financial assistance for Filipino families amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
House Bill No. 8597 seeks to provide each Filipino family with a one-time P10,000 assistance or P1,500 per family member, whichever is higher, which they can use for their daily needs or to start their own businesses as they await the full roll-out of COVID-19 vaccines.
A press statement from the former Speaker read that the bill, which he and his allies filed on February 1, “has not been discussed up to now” and “has been languishing at the Committee on Social Services headed by Quezon City 5th District Rep. Alfred Vargas.”
“Sana makiramdam ang Congress and we convert into a Committee on the Whole or in any way that we can, kung kailangang humingi ng special session, para ipasa ‘to,” Cayetano told reporters during the inauguration of a new isolation facility in Pateros.
(I hope Congress would be sensitive about this and have itself be converted into a Committee of the Whole or do anyway that we can, even if we have to ask for a special session, to approve this.)
“Ginawa natin noong Bayanihan 1 ‘yan. Ginawa natin noong Bayanihan 2. There’s no reason why we can’t do it again,” he added.
(We did it in Bayanihan 1 and Bayanihan 2. There’s no reason we can’t do it again.)
Meanwhile, the Tarlac City Sangguniang Panlungsod issued a resolution saying the 10K Ayuda Bill will “ensure that every Filipino is given additional assistance in recognition of the fact that we have all been affected by the pandemic, economic setbacks, and all the hardships brought about in the year 2020.”
The resolution, signed by Vice Mayor Genaro Mendoza and all 12 members of the Sangguniang Panglungsod, noted that the bill prioritizes the country’s vulnerable sectors, such as poor, senior citizens, persons with disabilities, solo parents, and displaced or retrenched workers.
It also noted that the bill prioritizes medical frontliners, including barangay health workers, families of overseas Filipino workers, individuals who were unable to obtain assistance through any of the social amelioration programs, and Filipino citizens holding a national ID.
For its part, the Sangguniang Bayan of Alburquerque in Bohol said that the passage of the bill “would greatly benefit our countrymen who have been extremely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.”
The resolution quoted Cayetano as saying that “although Filipinos are known for their grit and resilience, assistance to our countrymen is still needed to help them survive and get back on their feet amid the pandemic while a viable vaccine program for all Filipinos is being rolled out by the government.”
The document further noted that the bill would ensure delivery of assistance to all families since it mandates the Department of Social Welfare and Development “to establish, maintain, and operate a telephone hotline, website, and mobile application in order to effectively facilitate the rollout of the said program.”
The resolution was signed by Vice Mayor Alexis Fernan Simeon and all 10 members of the Sangguniang Bayan.
The two resolutions, which are set to be sent to the House of Representatives and the Senate, were issued as the government reimposes stricter quarantine restrictions in Metro Manila and nearby provinces due to the rising number of new COVID-19 cases.
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