4P’s slots to Sulu PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 01 February 2011 14:37

JOLO, Sulu – Representative Habib Tupay Loong (1st district,Sulu) on Monday  expressed confident that the conditional cash grant program of the national  government through the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4P’s)  would greatly  help alleviate the lives of  about 70,000 families in  this province.

Rep Loong said provincial officials of Department of Social Welfare and Development  (DSWD), the lead agency in the program, has agreed to accommodate  an additional 60,000 more families from  the previous 9,631 families.

Loong said Sulu  is now entitled  to 69,631 families under  the 4P’s program of the national government, the highest quota so far extended by DSWD to a  lone province in the country.
He said DSWD in the province is now busy  interviewing and listing  the names of  families  qualified to become beneficiaries under the program.

In a brief meeting on Thursday with the 19 municipal mayors covering the  410 villages throughout the province,  Loong appealed to them to  help the DSWD in the listing of  beneficiaries  in their respective municipality to ensure that the names listed in the DSWD roster are legitimate residents of the  community.

Sulu remains as one of the poorest provinces in the country with 65 percent of the population shown to be living below the poverty line, way higher than the national average of 32 percent.
The 4P’s is a program by the DSWD aims to reduce poverty by providing qualified families conditional cash grants to 255 municipalities and 15 key cities in 45 provinces, serving 700,000 households.
The Sulu legislator here said  that under the program, a family beneficiary with maximum of three children will receive P500 per month (for a total of P6,000 a year) per household:  for health and nutrition and for educational expenses P300 per child a month or P900  a month or  a total of
P1,400 a month for a household with three children

But the beneficiaries Loong said,  have to comply with certain conditions to continue receiving the cash grants. These conditions include parents ensuring that their children attend school at least 85 percent of the time and receive vaccinations and health care.

The province of Sulu is predominantly agricultural with farming and fishing as its main livelihood activities. Its fertile soil and ideal climate can grow a variety of crops such as abaca, coconuts, oranges, and lanzones as well as exotic fruits seldom found elsewhere in the country such as durian and mangosteen.

Fishing is the most important industry since the Sulu Sea is one of the richest fishing grounds in the country. During breaks from fishing, the people build boats and weave mats. Other industries include coffee processing and fruit preservation.

The people of the province also engaged  in  an extensive pearl industry. Pearls are extensively gathered and a pearl farm is established at Marungas Island in the province. — Nonoy E. Lacson