P200 monthly subsidy for poor families a ‘pittance,’ says Poe
MANILA, Philippines — The government’s P200 monthly subsidy for poor families amid the continuous rise in oil prices is a “pittance,” Senator Grace Poe said Wednesday.
President Rodrigo Duterte recently approved the provision of P200 monthly for poor households belonging in the bottom half to cushion the impact of soaring prices.
“Coming in after 11 weeks of successive oil price increases, the government’s P200 per month cash assistance to poor families is a pittance,” Poe said in a statement.
“At P6.66 per day, it can’t even get one a jeepney ride to the minimum distance,” she lamented.
The minimum fare for public utility jeepneys is at P9.
Poe said the government should not spend less to assist Filipinos amid these trying times.
“Our people deserve more amid the battering of the high cost of living, joblessness and continuing impact of the pandemic,” she said.
“The government must not scrimp on aid to help our people feed their families, live decently, return to work safely and spur economic activity,” she continued.
The senator likewise hoped that the government will reconsider proposals to suspend fuel tax to ease the prices.
Duterte opposed the suspension of fuel excise tax as proposed by the Department of Finance who said this would only benefit people who have cars.
“We hope that proposals to suspend fuel tax will be given a serious thought to bring prices down. Or increase the P200 per month cash aid which is not enough to see our people through these hard times,” said Poe.
Currently, local pump prices are at P84 for diesel and P94 for gasoline.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.