BATANGAS CITY: President Benigno Aquino 3rd is unfazed by a recent Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey showing an increase in Filipino families saying they were poor.
Speaking to reporters, the President said that the nationwide survey, conducted from December 11 to 16, 2013 by SWS research group, did not reflect the results of the government’s Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) program.
He said that that the survey may have focused on asking respondents in the Visayas and Mindanao regions devastated by recent calamities, thus negatively affecting their views on their conditions.
“Hindi tayo nag-go-govern kasi sa survey e. Nag-go-govern tayo sa ano ba ang facts [We don’t govern using surveys. We govern using facts],” he added
The President said that the government focuses on long-term interventions to address poverty in the country particularly through the CCT program.
He cited, for instance, the young people graduating from high school, whom he said would get jobs that eventually raises the family income.
“Palagay ko dapat nating pagtuunan ng pansin lahat ng mga intervention natin ditto ay hindi naman ‘yung panandaliang kalutasan, kundi pang-matagalan. Ano ba ‘yung pang-matagalan? Syempre, ‘yung CCT [I think what we should focus on are not band aid solutions but long term solutions. What is our long term solution? It is the CCT program],” he said.
The CCT, or the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program, is the Aquino administration’s flagship poverty-alleviation program.
It gives families cash for keeping their children in school and bringing them to local health centers for check-ups. By October 2013, the CCT covered some four million households. CATHERINE S. VALENTE