At least 266 senior citizens in Pampanga recently received cash incentives amounting to P26 million in line with the provincial government’s program for the elderly.
In a statement issued by the Provincial Information Office (PIO), Gov. Lilia Pineda extended benefits to senior citizen’s ages 95 years old and above in observance of the Elderly Week during the first week of October.
The governor said the distribution of cash incentives is part of the Capitol’s objective to provide adequate health and livelihood assistance to the elderly. Starting next year, however, the PIO said that the Capitol will follow the guidelines provided for under the Centenarian Act or RA 10868 earlier signed by President Aquino.
Under RA 10868, all Filipinos who reach the age of 100 will receive a letter of felicitation from the President of the Philippines and a P100,000 cash gift, whether they are residing in the Philippines or abroad.
The law further states that the beneficiaries will also be awarded with a plaque of recognition and additional cash gift from their respective city or municipal governments during the National Respect for Centenarians Day, which is set on September 25 of every year. There are about 3,500 Filipinos aged 100 and older expected to benefit from the Centenarian Act.
Meanwhile, the social welfare department and the local government units celebrate the Elderly Filipino Week or Linggo ng Nakatatandang Filipino to emphasize the important role that older persons play in nation building, as well as raise and address issues concerning the sector.
The governor said the Republic Act (RA) 9994 or the Expanded Senior Citizens Act of 2010 must be strictly implemented. Under the said law, senior citizens are entitled to a 20 percent discount on the purchase of certain goods and services, special 5 percent discount on prime commodities and basic necessities, and a 5 percent utility discount on electric and water consumption.
Norberto Coronel, a 95- year-old retired priest from San Nicolas 2nd , Betis, Guagua, lauded the governor for her heart-warming program for senior citizens. Coronel stayed in New York USA for 17 years and worked as social worker for prisoners.
“Kami po ay lubos na nagpapasalamat at nagbibigay-pugay sa ating mahal na gubernadora sa kanyang napakagandang programa para sa mga senior citizens na kagaya po namin,” Coronel said.