'Ayuda' should be publicly distributed for transparency

‘Ayuda’ should be distributed in public for transparency — Alan Cayetano

By: - Reporter / @zacariansINQ
/ 11:08 AM January 24, 2024

End of COVID ‘ayuda’ draws disbelief PH economy has recovered


MANILA, Philippines — Payouts of government aid should be made public to prevent similar instances of the alleged “ayuda (aid) scheme” in Davao del Norte and Davao del Sur, said Senator Alan Cayetano on Wednesday.

Cayetano made the pronouncement amid an ongoing Senate investigation into an alleged fraudulent scheme in Davao del Norte and Davao del Sur, where kickbacks were allegedly taken from subsidies meant for aid beneficiaries.


READ: Senate panel starts probe into ‘ayuda scam’

According to Cayetano, concerned agencies should publicly announce the amount beneficiaries should receive in their payouts for transparency purposes and to conduct the distribution in public spaces.


“Sa aking opisina, inannounce namin paulit-ulit na dapat ito ang amount na i-uwi ninyo. Para kapag iba ang amount, kaya nilang magsumbong on the spot,” he said in a statement on Wednesday.

(In our office, we repeatedly announced that this should be the amount you take home. So, if the amount differs, they can report it on the spot.)

“We don’t do this in private offices. Dapat sa covered or open court at may staff na andoon,” he added.

(We don’t do this in private offices. It should be done in a covered or open court with staff present.)

The senator said all these precautions should help prevent miscommunication and promote transparency and accountability in assistance rollouts.

Probe expansion

Cayetano then urged the Senate Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs to expand the investigation into other areas should additional witnesses come forward.


“I would also like to ask the question whether you are willing to expand it if additional witnesses will come here regarding other areas,” Cayetano told Senate committee on public order and drugs chair Senator Bato dela Rosa.

He said that while government staff have been working hard behind the rollout of the economy, there is a reality on the ground where people scheme and rob the people of their assistance.

“In reality, may rumors talaga [ang scam]. Minsan totoo, minsan hindi. [Nakakalungkot kasi] if you have 8, 9, 10 na maayos ang pagbibigay ng ayuda, pero y’ung isa na may kalokohan, apektado lahat,” he said.

(In reality, there are indeed rumors about scams. Sometimes they’re true, sometimes not. It’s disheartening when 8, 9, or 10 people assist correctly, but one dishonest act affects everyone.)

READ: Probe pilferage of DSWD aid, senator urges

During the Tuesday hearing, several witnesses shared their experiences of most of their financial aid being “forcibly taken.”

One witness claimed she received P10,000 on October 29, 2023, for educational assistance but was forced to turn over P9,000 to an unidentified person inside a room in a function hall behind Carmen’s municipal office, Davao del Norte.

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Another hearing on the scheme was set for January 30, with additional witnesses invited to take part in the probe.

TAGS: ayuda, Scam, Senate

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