It may seem ambitious but that is what Vice-President Maria Leonor Robredo calls her recovery plan.
MANILA, Philippines — In a recent press conference, Robredo laid down her recovery plan, which includes the payment of all government debts in hospitals.
If she becomes president in 2022, she would use items in the national budget to fund her ₱500 billion proposal to set the country to a path to recovery.
For starters, she identified the ₱4.5 billion discretionary fund of the Office of the President and the ₱54 billion special purpose fund from different government agencies.
She said with the huge problem the country is facing, ambitious solutions are necessary.
“Kailangan maging ambitious tayo kasi ang laki ng problema natin ngayon,” Robredo said.
(We need to be ambitious because we are facing a huge problem.)
She discussed the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation’s huge debt owed to hospitals claiming unpaid medical services rendered. The hurdles in the agency will be removed to ensure the smooth processing of payment claims.
Her administration, she said, will make sure that all medical workers are compensated fairly, every barangay health center will have its own nurse and medical equipment.
After attributing the slow pandemic response to the inaction of Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, a Robredo administration will set a competent health secretary who will make the bureaucracy accountable, with technical expertise, and who can empathize with the Filipinos.
She will push for the creation of a ‘unemployed insurance system’ for people who have lost their employment, in which displaced workers may get 80 percent of their wage for three months in order to support their families while seeking for a new job.
With it, she plans to come up with a ‘modern aid system’ that will simplify the distribution of cash aid to reach especially those in communities under localized lockdowns.
This is a response to the ₱780 million worth of cash aid during the pandemic that the Department of Social Welfare and Development failed to disburse.
Education, according to Robredo, will be based on the alert level status of a certain locality, not a one-size-fits-all policy. Low risk areas will enjoy ‘balik-eskuwela’ program while in high-risk locales, e-learning devices with internet capability will be distributed to student so they will not be left out.
She also looks forward to a strong private-public relationship. She said private sector confidence is important so that government can implement more social programs.
She stressed that the path to recovery starts with a trustworthy leader who has a clear sight of the direction to take, and a good example to all. (RA/JuanManila)