MANILA (Mabuhay) – While foreign governments have pledged millions of dollars in donations for relief efforts in the Philippines, the government is not actually getting its hands on most of the funds.
Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) chief Kim Henares clarified that foreign governments usually course their donations through their own aid organizations.
“May misconception ang tao na ang laki-laki ng dinonate ng ibang bansa sa Pilipinas. Ang nangyayari ho, ang America mayroon sila donation eh hindi ho nila binibigay ang pera sa gobyerno. Ginagawa nila binibigay nila sa sariling charitable organization nila, like USAID. At yun USAID mismo ang magdistribute (ng relief goods),” Henares told dzMM.
For instance, the US government provided $22.5 million worth of humanitarian funding through the USAID and its Department of Defense, while the Vatican donated $150,000 to be distributed to local churches in the affected areas.
Other donations made by other countries are coursed through the Red Cross, United Nations and other NGOs.
As of November 17 3 p.m., the Department of Foreign Affairs said the Philippines has received $248.03 million (P10.66 billion) in international aid assistance for relief and rehabilitation efforts in Yolanda-hit areas.
“The only amount na natanggap ng gobyerno, in cash, is donation ng ADB na $3 million Pagtanggap ng Bureau of Treasury, dinala na agad sa Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD),” Henares said.
The ADB extended $3 million from the ADB’s emergency assistance facility, Asia Pacific Disaster Response Fund, and another $20 million from the Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction, a trust fund financed by the Japanese government.
“Hindi ho namin natatanggap yun pera dahil dumederecho yun sa organisasyon mismo ng gobyerno na nag-donate,” she said.(MNS)