DSWD scales down 4Ps purge, to delist just 850K, not 1.3M | Inquirer News

DSWD scales down 4Ps purge, to delist just 850K, not 1.3M

/ 05:00 AM September 07, 2022

Erwin Tulfo. STORY: DSWD scales down 4Ps purge, to delist just 850K, not 1.3M

Social Welfare Secretary Erwin Tulfo (File photo by NIÑO JESUS ORBETA / Philippine Daily Inquirer)

MANILA, Philippines — Only around 850,000 households — not 1.3 million as originally planned — will be removed from the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps), Social Welfare Secretary Erwin Tulfo told lawmakers on Tuesday, acknowledging that many on the list of potential 4Ps graduates remain poor.

At the budget hearing of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) on Tuesday, the agency head said he reconsidered the plan on the advice of a 4Ps beneficiary organization which noted that about a third of those to be delisted were still disadvantaged, and therefore eligible for the conditional cash grant.


In 2019, the DSWD, after making house-to-house visits nationwide, identified 1.3 million households out of 4.4 million 4Ps beneficiaries that were already “non-poor.”


‘Nobody got richer’

In July, Tulfo, a former broadcaster who was plucked from his popular public service program to head the DSWD, announced that the 1.3 million households had “graduated” from extreme poverty and would no longer receive the grant.

But that might have been premature, he admitted on Tuesday.

“Some of our lawmakers, when we came out with the [delisting proposal], objected. Even the beneficiaries complained because they said, coming from a pandemic, nobody could have gotten richer. If there were, they were only a few,” Tulfo told the House appropriations committee.

He added that he met with the association of 4Ps beneficiaries three weeks ago to ask them about the real status of its members.

“They told me that out of the 1.3 million… about 30 to 40 percent should not be removed from the list,” he said.

That amounts to about 450,000 beneficiaries, leaving the rest, some 850,000 households, to be trimmed off the list.


“I asked them if they could come up with a list of people who could be removed so we can compare that list with our Listahanan 3, 4Ps list and the municipal list. There are four lists we could [cross-check], which is our safety net so that we would not remove someone qualified,” Tulfo said.

The DSWD chief assured would-be graduates they would be informed several months in advance before their removal from the program.

Although no longer eligible for 4Ps, delisted beneficiaries may avail themselves of other DSWD interventions, such as those on sustainable livelihood or its assistance to individuals in crisis situations.

Tulfo expects that the evaluation of the 4Ps list and the removal of ineligible beneficiaries should be completed before the year ends.

No savings

But he clarified that the delisting of 4Ps households would not mean savings for the DSWD, as the funds would only go to newly enrolled beneficiaries.

Every year, the target number of beneficiaries is 4.4 million.

The 4Ps poverty reduction strategy was institutionalized under Republic Act No. 11310, signed in 2019 by then President Rodrigo Duterte.

The program is conditioned on the beneficiary families’ commitment to achieving target outcomes in health and education.

Qualified beneficiaries include farmers, fisherfolk, homeless families, indigenous peoples, and those in the informal sector or living in isolated and disadvantaged areas without electricity.

Under the law, the monthly education grant is P300 per child enrolled in daycare and elementary school for a maximum of 10 months a year, P500 per child enrolled in junior high school, and P700 per child enrolled in senior high school.

A compliant beneficiary also receives a P750 monthly health grant and a P600 monthly rice subsidy.

According to the DSWD, a total of P89.7 billion in cash grants was released to about 4.3 million households in 2021 alone.

Programs for elderly

Also on Tuesday, Tulfo asked the House committee for a bigger allocation to fund an additional P25 billion in social pension for the elderly and to give incentives to the country’s centenarians.

The DSWD hopes to double its social pension for indigent senior citizens from P500 to P1,000, and to pay the P100,000 longevity benefit for 662 Filipinos age 100 or older.

“Filipinos are seemingly living longer so we need P66.2 million for our centenarians,” Tulfo said.

He said the DSWD had proposed P223.15 billion, but budget managers approved only P194.6 billion in the expenditure program submitted to Congress.

The budget cut, according to him, would mainly affect the Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situations program, whose allocation is lodged in the department’s maintenance and operating expenses, as well as its construction and repair of facilities including warehouses.

“Another (affected item) is our capital outlay… We had a request for P9 billion but that was reduced to just over P1 billion,” Tulfo added.


Tulfo: 30% of 1.3 million ‘non-poor’ families may be saved from 4Ps delisting

DSWD delists over 17,000 4Ps grantees in Central Visayas

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.

Makabayan seeks congressional inquiry into delisting of 1.3M 4Ps beneficiaries


© Copyright 1997-2024 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.