MANILA – Senator Cynthia Villar said that the middle class should not be receiving financial aid from the government amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
During the Senate hearing on coronavirus measures on Tuesday, May 19, Villar question the idea that middle-class families should receive assistance from the government’s social amelioration program (SAP).
“Yung 18 million is 82%. Bakit bibigyan ‘yung middle eh may trabaho sila, kahit lockdown nagsusweldo sila sa gobyerno kung employed by the government. Kung employed naman ng mga private, nagsusweldo rin sila kaya nga nahihirapan and mga companies kasi they have to pay the salaries even if there is no business,” Villar said. (The 18 million is 82%. Why do we need to give cash aid to the middle class when they have jobs? Even during the lockdown, workers receive salaries from the government if they are employed by the government. If they are employed by the private sector, they also receive their salaries. That’s why companies are financially strained because they have to pay the salaries even if there is no business.
“Hindi ko ma-accept and figures na ‘yun. Masyadong mataas. Nade-deprive ang mahihirap dahil binibigyan pati ang middle class,” (I can’t accept those figures. It’s too high. Poor Filipinos are being deprived because the middle class receives aid too.)
The billionaire senator was referring to the P200-billion emergency subsidy program for the 18 million low-income families in the country as part of the financial aid included on the Bayanihan to Heal as One-Act.
While Villar claimed that middle-class Filipinos receive salaries during this pandemic, New reports from the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) stated that at least 2.3 million workers from the private sector have been laid off or currently on a “No Work, No Pay” scheme.
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