Removed 4Ps beneficiaries have no criminal liability – DSWD

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) clarified yesterday that those removed from the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) are not criminally responsible simply because they are no longer considered poor but continue to receive assistance from the government.

The law also cannot punish the DSWD personnel who processed the papers of the 4Ps beneficiary families.

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According to DSWD Secretary Erwin Tulfo, it would be ‘unfair’ if those removed were to be sued because there were conditions that were followed when they joined the 4Ps.

“Hindi sila criminally liable kasi it will be unfair naman ho, sir. When we said that graduate na po sila, meaning to say… kasi mayroon pong mga sinusunod na conditions – you have going to school, walang trabaho si tatay or si nanay or parehong walang trabaho ang magulang,” said Tulfo during Laging Handa public briefing.

Tulfo explained that they have the National Housing Targeting Office or NHTO that conducts face-to-face interviews to identify those who should be removed from the program.

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Removed 4Ps beneficiaries have no criminal liability – DSWD

“Sila ‘yung aming nasa ground, people on the ground who do iyong interviews, iyong face-to-face meeting with the household para malaman iyong estado ng kanilang buhay,” explained Tulfo.

The 1.3 million 4Ps beneficiaries who were first reportedly removed from the list have improved their lives, where it is possible that one or both of the parents already had a livelihood.

He also said that it is possible that the eldest son already has a job or has an OFW in the family.

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Tulfo also explained that the residence, fired about four or five years ago, was considered since they joined the 4Ps.

“Para ikaw ay maialis na sa ‘ika nga, section ng ‘poor’ – doon ka na sa ‘non-poor’ lalo na…four years ago/five years ago noong pinuntahan ka namin, wala ka talagang mga appliances, ang appliance mo lang eh ‘yung lutuan na de gasul pagkatapos electric fan. Ngayon binalikan ka namin mayroon ka ng mga flat screen TV na mga 72-inch na flat screen, mayroon ka ng double door na refrigerator, mayroon ka ng aircon,” added Tulfo.

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