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PIA Press Release

Lolos and Lolas benefit from "Katas ng VAT"

Lagawe, Ifugao (29 November) -- In an effort to augment the resources of poor senior citizens, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) is implementing the Katas ng VAT: Tulong Para Kay Lolo at Lola".

Edna Duhan of the DSWD said that a total of P634,500.00 will be distributed to 1,269 elders here who are considered poor. "This is one way of recognizing their contribution to nation building," she said.

Pursuant to the directive of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, the DSWD is implementing the project nationwide in coordination with the local government units and the Office of the Senior Citizen Affairs (OSCA).

Under this project, each beneficiary is given P500.00, a one-time cash subsidy funded through a National Government Allocation from the Oil VAT collection which aims to augment the resources of poor senior citizens and to recognize their contribution.

Identified beneficiaries are senior citizens who are 70 years old and above; dependent or belonging to a family whose income is within or below the poverty threshold per area; and must not be covered by any private and or government agency retirement benefit such as SSS, GSIS, PVAO.

Arsenia Tejada of DSWD-CAR who supervised the implementation of the said program said that with the amount allotted to CAR which is P5Million, 35% of said amount is for the Province of Ifugao. "This is based on the list of 70 years old and above senior citizens submitted by the 11 municipalities however, not all those in the list were accommodated.

Out of the 1,269 beneficiaries in the province, 7 are from the municipality of Aguinaldo; 90 in Al Lista; 59 in Asipulo; 172-Banaue; 211-Hingyon; 94-Hungduan; 141-Kiangan; 90-Lagawe; 173-Lamut; 119-Mayoyao; 113-Tinoc.

In Mt. Province, some 147 senior citizen in the municipality of Sabangan are beneficiaries of the "KATAS NG VAT Tulong Para Kay Lolo at Lola" project.

According to Francis Khayad of DSWD Field Office-CAR, there are 1,301 identified senior citizens in the province who benefit from the project. Simultaneous distribution of the P500 cash subsidy was conducted in the municipalities of Bontoc, Sabangan, Bauko, Tadian, Sadanga, Besao and Sagada. Distribution in the municipalities of Paracelis, Barlig and Natonin are scheduled next week.

Tejada said that they are still hopeful that the others will be given also the said benefit for as long as the citizenry is vigilant in paying their taxes. This will anyway benefit the disadvantaged sectors, she added.

Implementing guidelines of the project states that the DSWD Field offices in coordination with the OSCA shall jointly identify and recommend for payment. As there might be more senior citizens meeting the subsidy criteria than the funds to provide a subsidy to all of them, the ratio of one beneficiary per family shall be followed.

However, should there be remaining funds, a raffle shall be conducted to determine the final beneficiaries of the subsidy in each area. The eligible senior citizen may only claim the subsidy at their respective OSCA offices or in the absence of such, the local Social Welfare and Development office.

In order to ensure the validity of the claimant, he/she shall be required to present a valid identification card that indicates the birth date of the senior citizen or a certification from the barangay captain as to the age of the senior citizen. (PIA) [top]

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