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Nograles calls De Lima’s comments on Bayanihan report ‘unfair’


By Prince Golez


This was how Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles described the statement of Senator Leila de Lima that President Rodrigo Duterte’s second report to Congress regarding government’s coronavirus disease response has more plans than actions.

“Hindi naman yata fair ‘yun,” Nograles said during his virtual presser on Wednesday.

In a dispatch from Camp Crame yesterday, de Lima claimed that Duterte failed to report how much of the funds have been used to deal with the coronavirus crisis in the country.

She also criticized the limited Social Amelioration Program forms that are being distributed by the Department of Social Welfare and Development.

“Mas marami ang plano kasya aksyong konkreto. Ito ang mapapansin sa 2nd weekly report ni G. Duterte. Wala ring accounting ng pera at resources – kung saan kinuha, gaano, at paano nagamit. Kaya bulag pa tayo kung sapat, tama, at angkop ang paggugol ng kabang-bayan. This is the main point of Section 5 of RA 11469 that the President has to report ‘the amount and corresponding utilization of funds’,” the lady senator said.

She went on to say: “I have been reading about the problems brewing in the communities in the social amelioration program. It appears that DSWD went ahead and implemented the cash assistance program from its old census and without waiting for the LGUs (local government units) inputs on the total number of beneficiaries. They also distributed very limited number of forms – which could not be reproduced by LGUs – which further limited the opportunity for many to claim their financial assistance.”

De Lima hoped that there will be a timeline for the government’s procurement of additional personal protective equipment and other medical supplies, as well as a “clearer picture’ on how mass testing for the viral disease will be conducted.

“Overall, based on the 2nd weekly report: things are moving, but not as fast and as efficient as we want,” she concluded.

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