THE Department of Social Welfare and Development in Region 10 (DSWD-10) has appealed to the beneficiaries of the government's various cash aid programs to spend the money only for essential needs.
Oliver Inodeo, DSWD-10 information officer, said the agency has received reports that beneficiaries of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) and Listahanan–the basis for the Social Amelioration Program (SAP) recipients affected by quarantine–were caught buying liquors or illegal drugs.
Inodeo said that 4Ps beneficiaries can be reported to their office if found to have misused their cash assistance as part of their "grievance system."
"Anyone can file a report to our office, and anyone who misuses their money will undergo a due process of investigation," he said.
He said 4Ps beneficiaries who violate the arrangements set under the program will be given fair warnings, and be subjected to a case management protocol by a social worker.
"The final consequence if they found guilty will be delisting of their names," he said.
As for the Listahanan-SAP beneficiaries, he said the budget for the program was given to the respective local government units for distribution during the quarantine.
While no specific guidelines on how SAP beneficiaries should use the money, Inodeo said the agency has advised recipients to prioritize essential needs.
Various police units in the region have recorded erring 4Ps and Listahan-SAP beneficiaries for violating quarantine protocols and certain laws.
On April 28, the Cagayan de Oro Police Office (Cocpo) arrested Danilo Razalo, 44; and Criselo Baguinat, 40 for allegedly having shabu pot session.
Police said Razalo is a 4Ps beneficiary while Baguinat was a recipient of SAP aid. Charges related to the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act will be filed against them.
On April 24, police also apprehended Claver Lomongo, 39; and Archer Bacala, 40, for violation of the liquor ban. Both are SAP beneficiaries and will face charges.
In Bukidnon province, the Talakag municipal police also arrested on April 27 two 4Ps beneficiaries for violating the liquor ban.
Meanwhile, officials said the distribution of SAP funds to the beneficiaries continued on Wednesday in the Bukidnon town of Cabanglasan with the assistance of the police and military.
Lt. Col. Edgardo V Talaroc Jr., commander of the Army's 8th Infantry Battalion, commended the constituents for the orderly distribution of SAP aid.
“We are always ready to provide security and other necessary assistance to deliver the much-needed emergency cash assistance and other government services to the people," he said. (PNA)