August 29, 2008 – 2:00 p.m.
Women’s group GABRIELA branded Malacañang’s proposed P1.415 trillion budget for 2009 budget as anti-poor. The group said that to claim that it will provide ‘welfare armor’ for poor families is a complete lie.
In a statement, Emmi de Jesus, GABRIELA secretary general, explained that the P10.5 billion allocation for the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) is measly. “It is a mere 1.2 percent of the P305 billion allocations for debt servicing,” de Jesus said.
“Even if the whole DSWD budget goes only to those who live below the poverty line, the welfare budget would only amount to P456 per poor person in a year or P1.25 per day,” added de Jesus.
Citing the recent report released by the Asian Development Bank, 23 million Filipinos are living below the new poverty line in Asia-Pacific of $1.35 a day (P61.50 at $1=P45.55 foreign exchange rate).
De Jesus also said that the data belie government claims on the benefits of VAT. (Bulatlat.com)