The initially planned distribution of food vouchers as part of the Capitol’s social amelioration program has been scrapped as the provincial government will instead roll out rice aid for those affected by the health crisis.
Governor Arthur Yap, in a press briefing on Friday, said that he decided to alter the supposed multi-million peso initiative due to suggestions from stakeholders preferring rice assistance over the P-500 food vouchers.
“Originally ang plano nato, mo hatag ta og food voucher pero sa akong pag-suroy daghan man ang mo hanyo nako na ‘gov, usbon nato. Mas maayo pa just give us rice.’ And for that reason, we are changing and shifting what we are going to give—dili na food voucher, we will just give rice because this is the request of the people,” he said.
Yap assured that the province will be allocating “top-grade” rice.
“Kung rice ra, ang gusto pud nato na ihatag nila is good quality rice. So we are preparing it. The quality is very good,” he said.
The rice assistance program is expected to be rolled out in July, the start of the traditional lean season for the country’s main staple.
Lean months are usually from July to September when local rice harvest is almost nil.
In early April, Yap announced that the provincial government was allocating P150 million for the distribution of food vouchers to 300,000 families across the island as assistance to those affected by the slumping economy and loss of livelihood due to the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic.
The food voucher was supposed to be equivalent to various food commodities such as sugar, noodles, eggs, chicken, milk, canned goods and coffee, among others.
Yap also said that the Capitol devised the measure after some residents in the province were not able to benefit from the Department of Social and Welfare and Development’s (DSWD) social amelioration program which was rolled out in April and May. (AD)