Result and Analysis of G-Watch’s Online Survey on the State of the Social Amelioration Program (SAP) Implementation

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Government Watch (G-Watch) is currently conducting a monitoring of citizen entitlements under the COVID-19 response. This endeavor asserts the need for governments to pay attention to providing what citizens are entitled to during emergency/ crisis situation. Often, this is overlooked and a cause of abuse where delivery of services and assistance becomes an opportunity for corruption and abuse of authority, instead of a way to ensure welfare and protection of the people.

This third output is a presentation of the result of an online survey that G-Watch has opened up publicly from April 27 to May 7, 2020. It aims to know the situation of SAP implementation by generating response online from whomever would be willing to respond to the survey. We distributed the survey questionnaire using G-Watch’s Facebook page and have also asked our core G-Watchers to respond to and share the survey questionnaire.

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1. The distribution of the Social Amelioration Card (SAC) as the first step in SAP implementation (as per first DSWD information material) was not followed.
2. The distribution of the SAP is delayed and/or did not reach all intended beneficiaries.
3. The 4Ps beneficiaries indeed received their payout fastest among the SAP beneficiaries, but it is hard to check whether they got the additional assistance on top of their regular payout since this is not separately accounted for.
4. Information and guidelines about SAP have been generally unclear.
5. Government poverty data is problematic across levels.
6. There is a general perceived distrust and lack of confidence towards those who manage and implement SAP.
7. The level of efficiency and smoothness in the coordination between the DSWD and the local governments varies, with many perceiving it to be problematic. It is not immediately apparent to people if there is a point-person of DSWD in their locality.
8. It is widely perceived that palakasan system, nepotism and patronage determines who got assisted by SAP.
9. SAP implementation is generally deemed problematic.

Recap and Some Recommendations