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CEBU CITY, Philippines – Do Filipino voters look forward to the promises of candidates during elections? Apparently, some still do.
Liza Morga, a 56-year-old Cebuana, for example, looks forward to becoming a beneficiary of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps), adding that the program could greatly help her especially now that she has grandchildren.
“Dili pa gyod ko miyembro aning 4P’s pero mao na akong gipangita kay naa ko mga apo apan wala man gyod ko maapil ana,” Morga said. (I’m not a member of 4Ps but I’m hoping I’ll be one soon because I have grandchildren to support.)
Morga is only one of thousands, if not millions of Filipinos, yearning to be a beneficiary of 4Ps. She is hopeful, especially when Liberal Party standard-bearer Mar Roxas mentioned how the current administration led by President Benigno Aquino III had successfully alleviated poverty through the program.
Roxas during his sortie at the vote-rich province on Wednesday, April 26, urged Cebuanos to still choose the “daang matuwid,” to be able to continue the Aquino administration’s flagship poverty alleviation program and to add more beneficiaries.
Since the beginning of their campaign, the Liberal Party has anchored their platform on the promise of continuity. In their first event together since filing their certificates of candidacy, Roxas and his runningmate Leni Robredo also promised to institutionalize the 4Ps program.
This is the reason why Morga is set on voting the Roxas-Robredo ticket and she is not the only one.
A survey conducted by the Social Weather Stations (SWS) in March 2016 showed that 80% of Filipino voters will likely vote for candidates who will continue the Aquino administration’s flagship poverty alleviation program.
Led by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), the 4Ps program is a way for the national government to measure and provide financial assistance to the marginalized sectors of society by improving health and providing education for children.
According to the Official Gazette, 4Ps operates in all the 17 regions in the Philippines, which means the program has beneficiaries in 79 provinces, 143 cities and 1,484 municipalities.
Meanwhile, the National Household Targeting System for Poverty Reduction (NHTS-PR) locates and identifies where the poor are in the country.
“Dako gyod ang matabang sa 4P’s,” Morga said. (This 4P’s could help me a lot.)
Morga also shared she was able to avail some of DSWD’s programs which helped her send her child to school, when she was still active in their barangay.
“Sauna naa programa ang DSWD nakatabang alang sa pagpaeskwela sa akong anak, kay supporter man ako anak sa DSWD unya ako sa barangay apan dugay naman kung wala sa barangay na,” Morga added. (DSWD has this program before and they were able to help me send my child to school. My child was a supporter of DSWD while I’m an active member in our barangay, but that’s not the case now.)
Morga believes, however, that to effectively alleviate poverty, one should eliminate crimes first.
“Kung kinsa gyod nila nga makalingkod sa pagkapresidente mas nindot gyod nga kana gyod drugas, usa gyod na nga wagtangon gyod unta ba kay pait gyod kaayo unya luoy sad ang mga bata nga nagdako bitaw unya makakat-on musunod sad,” Morgan said.
(Whoever becomes president, it would be better if he or she eliminates drugs first because I pity children who grow up in an environment where drugs are rampant. There’s a huge possibility that they will be addicted.)
Even though Morga was not able to tell this personally to her presidential bet, she’s still hopeful that the latter will hear and feel her plea.
With a few days left before the elections, candidates have been agressively campaigning on the trail, delivering promises to discerning voters here and there. Whether they are going to deliver these promises when elected is another matter altogether. – Rappler.com
Apple Grace Danuco is one of the lead Rappler Movers in Cebu