DILG warns politicians vs using COVID-19 aid for political purposes
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) warned politicians on Saturday against using their name, photo, or any image in connection with the distribution of aid, or “ayuda,” to residents of the National Capital Region Plus, which is under enhanced community quarantine (ECQ).
NCR Plus is composed of Metro Manila, Bulacan, Rizal, Cavite, and Laguna.
“The use of the ayuda for partisan political purposes for the 2022 national elections is strictly prohibited. The DILG will not tolerate the politicization of government aid or tolerate the practice when we see it or made aware of it,” Interior Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya, DILG spokesperson, said.
The aid refers to the P1,000 in cash or kind to be given to each qualified individual in NCR Plus, provided that no family will get more than P4,000.
The DILG and the Department of Social Welfare and Development have issued guidelines regarding the distribution of this aid.
According to Malaya, violators would be held liable for violating Section 82 of the General Appropriations Act which prohibits the use of the name, logo, signature, and any sort of image of any public official, whether elected or appointed, in all government programs, activities, and projects.
Administrative charges under COA Circular 2013-004 may also be filed against violators.
Any citizens may file the complaint to the nearest DILG office together with photographs of the financial aid bearing the politician’s photo, name, or image printed on it.
“We will make sure that the funds downloaded to the LGUs are used for purposes they were intended for. Before distribution, the mayor should issue an executive order detailing therein the type, manner, or process of distribution so that the public is properly guided. They are also required to create a Grievance and Appeals Committee per LGU where people can submit complaints,” said Malaya.
“The LGU Grievance and Appeals Committee shall handle all complaints from the public with dispatch,” he added.
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