DSWD-6 warns against ‘financial aid shaving’

By Jennifer P. Rendon

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD)-Region 6 has reiterated that financial aid should be received in full by beneficiaries.

The agency has again made the clarification following reports that some individuals or groups deduct a certain amount from the financial benefits, particularly the Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situation (AICS) program.

In a statement, Atty. Carmelo Nochete, DSWD-6 regional director, warned the public that no person or entity is allowed to take away a portion of the assistance that a beneficiary should receive.

“Ginapaandaman sang DSWD ang publiko nga indi magpadala-dala sa mga indibidwal ukon grupo nga mga ini. Ang ginapanagtag nga AICS para lamang sa mga kwalipikado nga indibidwal nga yara sa krisis nga sitwasyon. Ang balor nga ginabaton indi puede nga buhinan,” he said.

Nochete added that beneficiaries should not allow themselves to fall prey to this scheme

“Ang kwarta nga bulig para sa inyo para lamang sa inyo. Kon may indibidwal ukon grupo nga luyag magbuhin sang nabaton nga bulig, indi magpadala-dala,” he said.

Nochete also stressed that DSWD-6 is non-partisan and does not endorse any individual or political group.

If there are individuals or groups that threaten to strip them from the DSWD program, “that’s not true. Only the DSWD has the authority to delist a member. But we could only do that if there’s a violation as regards the program’s rules and regulations or they are no longer qualified to receive the benefits.”

It was gathered that the DSWD-6 made the announcement after it received several informal complaints from Aklan and Iloilo that the financial assistance of beneficiaries has been shaved off.

A complainant from Kalibo, Aklan claimed to have received a P10,000 financial aid.

However after the amount was given, the beneficiary was allegedly asked to return the P8,000 for the Sangguniang Kabataan election.

The DSWD-6 noted most of the subjects of complaints are either incumbent barangay officials or candidates.

The DSWD-6 said they might file the complaint before the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) or with the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG).