The Department of Finance (DOF) has recognized the programs initiated by the City of Makati to support its constituents amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III said Makati City, led by Mayor Abby Binay, is a good example of an effective local government unit (LGU) in providing supplemental support to the national government’s COVID-19 response. While Dominguez also recognized other LGUs, the finance chief, who is President Duterte’s chief economic manager, noted that “Makati has done well” in supporting its local citizens.

They have provided very good support… So, we appreciate that” Dominguez said during a recent virtual Kapihan sa Manila Bay forum. In May, Binay announced that Makati City allotted P2.7 billion for distribution to its more than half a million residents. Under the Makatizen Economic Relief Program (MERP), residents receive P5,000 in financial aid each as long as they are at least 18 years old and have either the city’s Makatizen Card or Yellow Card, or be a registered voter to qualify for cash assistance. Aptly called “MakaTulong,” Binay said the contactless cash distribution program through Globe GCash seeks to jumpstart Makati’s economic engine through aggressive spending.

The P2.7-billion ‘to help 5K for 500K+ Makatizens program,’ seeks to provide much-needed financial assistance to individual residents, not per household, as we begin to emerge from the prolonged lockdown,” she said. Apart from relief assistance, Makati has an e-learning program customized for the pandemic. Binay said each learner’s package contains an On-The-Go flash drive containing digital learning modules, printed instructional materials for all subjects, and washable face masks in a pouch. Over 85,000 pupils from pre-school to senior high school as well as teachers will receive free daily Internet load for the school year 2020-2021.


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