Palace open to congressional inquiry on Conditional Cash Transfer

MANILA — Malacañang is open to any congressional probe on the effectiveness of the Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) program, the presidential spokesperson said on Monday.

Commenting on reports that Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr. is seeking for a review of the CCT program to see if it has helped poverty alleviation efforts, Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said the CCT program provides a bridge between that stage when the poorest of the poor have nothing and the time when they find employment.

“…Kaya tinatawag itong intervention, pumapasok ang pamahalaan para hanapin sila at bigyan sila ng kapasidad umangat sa kanilang stage level ngayon,” he said.

Lacierda explained that the “poorest of the poor” are identified through a National Household Targeting Survey even as he noted that choosing the CCT beneficiaries is not based on recommendations.

“May survey na ginagawa, ina-identify natin sa bawat rehiyon kung sino ang dapat sumali diyan. May mga qualifications ito,” he said,

He said the government provides them livelihood.

“For instance, we give them 10,000 pesos to start a business. No interest, no collateral, and payable in two years,” he said.

To ensure the success of the CCT program, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) monitors the beneficiaries if they do send their children to school and give them proper health care, Lacierda said.

“Kapag tumanggap ka ng CCT, kailangan mag-aral at pumasok sa eskwela ang iyong mga anak. Kaya nga ito tinatawag na conditional. Hindi ito ibibigay lang sa’yo at bahala ka na. May monitoring na ginagawa ang DSWD,” Lacierda said, adding that those who do not comply are taken out of the program.

“To a large extent, it will be criminal for us not to help the poorest of the poor. That is our commitment—that no one should be left behind,” the presidential spokesperson said.#