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COVID-19 CRISIS

Duterte orders study on proposal to give subsidy to middle class


President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered his economic team to study the proposal of Cavite Governor Jonvic Remulla to include middle class households in the government’s cash subsidy program amid the COVID-19 emergency, a Malacañang official said Tuesday.

Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said in a virtual press conference that the economic managers led by Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III will have to study how the proposal can be implemented and the possible sources of funding.

Remulla said in a letter to the President that the public health emergency affects not just the poorest of the poor, but also those individuals who have "built much but not enough."

"They are often overlooked. They pay the most taxes. They are mostly law abiding citizens," Remulla said.

Responding to the governor’s appeal, the President said in a televised address that Remulla raised a "valid" concern.

"We’ll try to remedy whatever kung may mapulot pa tayo sa daan," Duterte said.

At present, the government’s social amelioration is focused on households belonging to the poor or informal sector.

The government has set aside P200 billion for the emergency subsidy program which aims to provide monthly cash subsidies to low-income households amounting to P5,000 to P8,000 for two months as mandated by the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act (Republic Act 11469).  --KBK, GMA News