DoLE says cash aid disbursement for workers in order, fault lies with employers

THE DEPARTMENT of Labor and Employment (DoLE) on Monday said problems on the pandemic-related cash aid released to workers could be traced back to companies that were in charge of distribution to their respective employees.

“We dispel that there are questions on the department’s disbursement of cash assistance,” DoLE Information and Publication Service Director Raul M. Francia said in an online briefing on Monday.

He explained that the Commission on Audit (CoA) cannot fault the department for employees receiving less than the P5,000 supposed cash aid per worker as the funds were released to their employers.

Mr. Francia said DoLE will “surely go after” those employers who did not give their workers the right amount of cash aid. He said they will face administrative penalties and ordered to give the money due to the beneficiaries.

The Labor official also said some beneficiaries may not have been able to receive the codes needed to claim the cash aid from remittance centers as they changed phone numbers, used the phone number of other people, or their lost phone.

Given such circumstances, he called on beneficiaries to update their data with the department and refile their claim. However, this is no guarantee of receiving cash aid as the unclaimed funds may have already been allocated to others.

In a news release on Monday, DoLE said it will submit an updated compliance report to state auditors “within 60 days from receipt of the CoA Report last 29 July 2021.”

In its 2020 report on the Labor department released on Saturday, the CoA said DoLE had “insufficient internal control measures” in its disbursement of cash assistance to workers affected by the pandemic which led to excessive payments, denied claims, and unclaimed cash aid in money remittance centers.

DoLE was given a budget of P7.3 billion for its pandemic-related programs for disadvantaged and displaced workers as well as overseas Filipino workers. — Bianca Angelica D. Anago

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