Former Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano and his allies on Saturday said they will continue to push for their proposal to distribute P10,000 per family despite its exclusion from the consolidated version of the Bayanihan 3 bill.
In a press conference after their “Sampung Libong Pag-Asa” program on Saturday, Cayetano said while they commend the consolidation of the 10k Ayuda Bill into Bayanihan 3, the proposed amount is crucial to the government’s planned stimulus program.
“I think na naging malinaw sa ating mga kasamahan that any stimulus program, any recovery program, any rescue program, ang puso nito ay dapat yung 10k na ayuda,” he said.
(I think it was clear to our colleagues that the distribution of P10,000 cash aid should be at the heart of any stimulus program, recovery program, or rescue program.)
While the 10k Ayuda Bill was integrated into Bayanihan 3, the joint hearing of the House of Representatives Committee on Economic Affairs and Committee on Social Services did not adopt its proposed amount for cash assistance.
Cayetano also expressed his reservations on proposals to distribute cash aid under Bayanihan 3 in two tranches. These proposals were opposed by Taguig 2nd District Rep. Lani Cayetano and Camarines Sur 2nd District Rep. Luis Raymund “LRay” Villafuerte Jr.
“We have to learn our lessons,” the former Speaker said. “Sa Bayanihan 1, ginawa po natin ay two tranches. Sa unang tranche, marami ang ‘di nakasama. Hanggang ngayon, bilyon ang nasa bangko na hindi pa narerelease sa appeals system.”
(We did Bayanihan 1 in two tranches. In the first tranche, many people were not included. Up to now, billions of pesos in the bank still haven’t been released under the appeals system.)
Villafuerte, for his part, said they will continue to push for the inclusion of a P10,000 cash aid provision once the consolidated Bayanihan 3 bill reaches the plenary.
“We will still fight for it on the floor and until the period of amendments, na sana P10,000 in one shot na po (that the amount should be P10,000 and given in full),” he said.
“We are committed na ilaban po ito dahil as you know, kahit magsurvey po kayo, ito po talaga ang hinihingi ng ating mga kababayan,” he added.
(We are committed to fighting for this because as you know, even if we do a survey, we will find that this is what our people are asking for.)
Cayetano and his allies had filed the 10k Ayuda Bill in February, aiming to expand and extend the government’s cash aid program for Filipino families.
The cash aid will allow Filipino families to buy their basic needs or seed money to start small businesses, according to the bill’s proponents.
Laguna 1st District Rep. Dan Fernandez said Congress should consider taking up the 10k Ayuda Bill separately since the proposal to distribute P10,000 each to every Filipino family is timely.
“Umaasa tayo at nananalangin tayo na sana po ay dinggin na ng Kongreso (ang 10k Ayuda Bill) at sa gayon po ay maimplement na ng national government (ang programa),” he said.
(We are hoping and praying that Congress will consider our 10k Ayuda Bill so that the national government can already implement it.)
Cayetano and member lawmakers of the Balik sa Tamang Serbisyo (BTS) movement in the House of Representatives gave cash aid to around 200 beneficiaries during their “Sampung Libong Pag-Asa” program on Labor Day.
Supported by donations from BTS lawmakers, the initiative aims to mobilize relief for the country’s poorest and most vulnerable sectors amidst the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
“Hopefully, itong gagawin natin today, in the spirit of bayanihan through private sponsors and donors, ma-encourage ang Congress pag-open ng May 17 na ‘yung 10K Ayuda Bill at Bayanihan 3 ay itulak naman at ipasa na,” Cayetano said.
(Hopefully, what we did today in the spirit of bayanihan and through private sponsors and donors will encourage Congress to support and pass the 10k Ayuda Bill and Bayanihan 3 when it opens on May 17.)
Between February and April, the BTS movement distributed P10,000 each to 38 beneficiaries from different parts of the country.