June 14, 2024

■  Ofelia C. Empian 

Around 80,000 residents of Benguet received P412 million worth of assistance from the two-day Bagong Pilipinas Serbisyo Fair (BPSF) on April 21 to 22 at the Benguet State University in La Trinidad.

House Speaker Martin Romualdez announced this during the launching of the service caravan.

Gov. Melchor Diclas, Benguet Rep. Eric Yap, national and regional officials, governors and lawmakers from the Cordillera also attended the event. 

The BPSF is the country’s largest service caravan under the Marcos administration, geared towards delivering major government services especially to underprivileged Filipinos.

Services offered were the flagship programs Kadiwa ng Pangulo, Passport on Wheels, and driver’s license registration or assistance. The North Luzon Expressway also conducted radio frequency identification (RFID) installation. 

Romualdez said a total of P261M in cash aid and P151M in-kind assistance in Benguet, which includes P110M in social services, P10M in health services, P50M in agricultural services, P180M in livelihood services, P35M in educational assistance, P25M in other government services, and P1M in regulatory services, were distributed during the BPSF.

The event resulted in long lines and traffic buildup at the capital town during the event which also serviced around 50,000 residents who received P100M in financial aid through the Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situations of the Department of Social Welfare and Development. A total of 160,000 kilos of rice were also given to selected beneficiaries during the event.

Benguet was the 15th local government unit that conducted the service caravan.

Other officials present in the event were 63 district and party-list House members led by Senior Deputy Speaker Aurelio Gonzales Jr., Deputy Speaker David Suarez, and Majority Leader Manuel Jose Dalipe.