• Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol said that instead of cash dole out, 4Ps budget should be allotted to livelihood programs
  • Akbayan Rep. Tom Villarin opposed the idea and said that 4Ps targets urban and rural families with no assets
  • On their respective Facebook pages, the two said they are willing to accept a debate on the issue

A congressman and a secretary are willing to get into a debate as to whether or not the P70-billion 4Ps (Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program) or the Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) program of the government should be given to livelihood programs instead.

Image by Manny Pinol via Facebook page

Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol earlier expressed his proposal to divert the alloted 4Ps fund to agriculture-related livelihood projects. Piñol was quoted by Manila Bulletin saying, “I will make formal proposals for that. Instead of cash dole outs, it will come out as livelihood assistance. It will contribute to greater food productivity.”

He also made several points on his Facebook page about his stand on 4Ps and wrote that, “This country is seeing the birth of a generation of mendicants who rely on government for their subsistence.”

Piñol’s stand was challenged by Akbayan Rep. Tom Villarin who was quoted by News5 saying, “The 4Ps program targets the poorest urban and rural families who don’t have assets like land and farm equipments, homeless families with children who can’t go to school, mothers and infants who need maternal health care.”

He added, “If you abolish the program, it’s another form of EJK affecting 4.5-M families.”

Rep. Villarin accepted the debate with Piñol.