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DSWD asks LGUs to enact ordinances prohibiting pawning of 4Ps cash cards

Fritzie Quijote (left), DSWD cash grants head, and Audrey Soliva, social marketing unit head for 4Ps, talked about the policies of the government for the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program, or 4Ps that any beneficiary should not violate, in an interview with the Philippine Information Agency's "Performing and Informing" online program, which is aired every Wednesday on the Facebook page of Region XII. (Photo: PIA Region 12)

KORONADAL CITY, South Cotabato (PIA) -- The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD-12) in the Soccsksargen region has asked local government units to enact ordinances that penalizes the pawning of cash cards by beneficiaries of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program, or 4Ps.

In a meeting with local chief executives, DSWD city and municipal coordinators sought their help to curb the rampant practice of pawning 4Ps cash cards.

“Pawning 4Ps automated teller machines (ATM) cards is putting your benefits and program participation at risk," warned Audrey Soliva, DSWD social marketing unit head for 4Ps.

Soliva said LGU’s legislation would serve as a mechanism to help discourage any 4Ps beneficiary from using their cash cards or ATM cards as collateral for their loans while at the same time saving them from committing such an offense that may endanger their chance to receive the grant.

“In that case, not only 4Ps beneficiaries can be held liable, but we can also go after the loan sharks,” she told the Philippine Information Agency’s online program “Performing and Informing,” which is aired every Wednesday on the Facebook page of the PIA Region 12.

“Any beneficiary found committing the offense will be reported to the Grievance Redress System (GRS) for sanctions,” Soliva added.

Habitual offenders, she added, will have their cash grant suspended or endorsed for delisting, depending on the assessment of the social worker in charge.

The Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program, or 4Ps beneficiaries, queued at the Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) to withdraw their cash payouts, which the DSWD sent via LBP. (File photo courtesy of the DSWD Region 12)

Meanwhile, Fritzie Quijote, cash grants head of DSWD, said they are doing all the interventions to prevent this practice.

Beneficiaries are always reminded to “live within their means" during the regular conduct of family development sessions.

“We are always reminding them not to pawn their ATM cards, kasi malaki ang interest, mas lalo silang maghihirap [because the interest is high, they will suffer even more],” Quijote pointed out.

According to the DSWD, the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program “is a human development measure of the national government that provides conditional cash grants to the poorest of the poor to improve the health, nutrition, and education of children aged 0–18.”

The DSWD-12 reported that at least 263,000 of the poorest households under the 4Ps in the Soccsksargen region were able to receive over P14 billion in cash grants in 2023. (ORVR - PIA Region 12)

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Harlem Jude Ferolino

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