NOTE: THIS STORY WAS FIRST PUBLISHED IN THE BOHOL CHRONICLE’S SUNDAY PRINT EDITION.
Rep. Erico Aristotle Aumentado has expressed confidence that the people of the 2nd District are discerning, know when services are given from the heart, and when they are just being doled out sugar-coated promises.
Aumentado said he wants to be voted from the heart, adding that when the time comes, his constituents and the people will rally behind good governance.
He said even the poor and marginalized clearly understand that out of need, they will accept money – but definitely not in exchange for their votes.
They need sustainability, not just the one-time election money that more often than not, gets diverted from basic needs to wants. The latter can range from gambling capital to intoxicating drinks and the ubiquitous finger foods (pulutan) that go with the former – and hair rebond – some or all of which were indulged in by a percentage of social amelioration fund (SAF) beneficiaries.
By sustainability, Aumentado refers to livelihood support – even alternative livelihood – that the constituents and the people can count on and live off on when election day is over and the inangayan has all been spent.
The solon goes around his district to establish a relationship with the people, especially the organized associations who grouped in the first place because of common interests.
These include women’s associations who are into chicken egg production or food processing, tricycle operators and drivers associations, irrigators’ associations, even farmers’ wives groups.
The solon clarifies that the funds amounting to more or less P5 million per group are not his, but from appropriate government agencies with programs for the purpose, like the Department of Labor and Employment’s Integrated Livelihood and Emergency Employment Program (Dileep) and the Department of Agriculture for dairy buffalo dispersal, post-harvest facilities, and other farm inputs.
Aumentado expressed gratitude to President Rodrigo Duterte, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III, OIC Angelie Salgados of DOLE-Bohol, Agriculture Secretary William Dar, Regional Executive Director Salvador Diputado and other personalities for supporting these programs that will be a source of livelihood for the beneficiaries during this pandemic. (June S. Blanco)