The Department of Social Welfare and Development said that beneficiaries of Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program are free to decide, choose, and express their beliefs and rights on issues concerning their lives and their communities.
This developed as some sectors have expressed that beneficiaries of the program will be used by politicians to advance their political interests.
DSWD Secretary Corazon Juliano-Soliman said that program beneficiaries are empowered individuals and have the right as other voters in this country to choose someone whom they believe epitomizes their principles.
“During the Family Development Sessions, we tell them about active citizenship and voting according to their conscience. But we never impose on them to vote for a certain political personality,” Sec. Soliman said.
She said that if beneficiaries want to join political activities, that is their right as citizens and it is on their own free will.
“If they believe that this personality has helped them and they want to show their support, we cannot hold them,” Sec. Soliman added.
The Secretary urged politicians to allow beneficiaries to exercise their political rights as citizens of this country.
She, however, reiterated that politicians cannot use the Pantawid Pamilya program to lure or threaten beneficiaries. ###