Press Release
May 26, 2019

Success of 4Ps Law Lies in Well-Crafted IRR - Recto

With the recent signing into law of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps), Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto called on officials of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) to "craft a responsive and relevant" implementing rules and regulations (IRR) that would address the challenges in implementing this P.5 trillion program.

Recto said the bill crafted by legislators which was recently signed into law, gathers the best practices and lessons learned from the past 10 years that the conditional cash transfer (CCT), officially called the 4Ps, has been implemented.

"From 2007, when it was launched with a P50 million budget, the 4Ps annual spending has surged 176,213 percent with this year's proposed allocation at P88 billion. With this amount, we should make sure that the real poor are helped and the targets of the program met," Recto said.

"Marami tayong batas na magaganda ang pagkagawa pero nadidiskarel pag lumabas na ang IRR dahil lihis sa intensyon ang ginagawang implementasyon," Recto said.

The IRR should reflect the real intention of the law, which is to institutionalize 4Ps to help the real poor, to ensure the sustainability of the program and avoid wasteful spending, and he added.

Republic Act No. 11310, an act institutionalizing 4Ps, was signed by President Duterte last April 17.

Integrated in the new law are the substantive amendments introduced by Recto in the Senate, such as the automatic inclusion of families of farmers, fisherfolks and those who live in areas without electricity; lifting of limit on the number of children to qualify for the cash grants; continuous impact assessment of the 4Ps program to be conducted by PIDS, including verification of the list of beneficiaries, and its recommendation every 6 years on whether to adjust the amount of cash grants based on inflation; DSWD and other government agencies to prioritize 4Ps families in their livelihood programs; safeguard against "local epal politics" by limiting the Advisory Councils at the regional and national level; and streamlining membership to Advisory Councils to include only the government agencies with different programs related to training, employment facilitation, microenterprise development and technology for those seeking jobs.

In pushing for his amendment prioritizing the farmers and fishermen in 4Ps enrolment, Recto said,"Most of the 23.7 million poor are in this sector. The poverty incidence among farmers is 34.3 percent, while it is 34 percent for fishermen. These are higher than the latest poverty incidence figure of 21.6 percent."

"Kung tatamaan pa sila ng rice tariffication at climate change, tama lang na unahin sila sa social protection," he added.

Another Recto amendment is linking 4Ps to livelihood and skills-training programs. "Hindi dapat parang dole out na naghihintay na lang ng allowance. Turuan dapat sila ng employment skills. This is not merely giving them fish, but teaching them how to fish."

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