House passes Magna Carta for the Poor

The House of Representatives passed on final reading House Bill 4629 the Magna Carta for the Poor. If signed into law by President Aquino, all government sectors will be tasked to formulate comprehensive plan for every poor to enjoy right to adequate food, the right to decent work, the right to adequate housing, and the right to the highest attainable standard of mental and physical health.

The National Economic and Development Authority will design and establish a single system of classification to be used for targeting beneficiaries.

The government will also prioritize investments in anti-poverty projects to enable the poor to fully participate in the country’s growth and development. All departments, agencies and instrumentalities of the government shall provide full access of its services to the poor.

“This time, we are confident the President will not reject the bill. His veto message on last Congress’s bill was taken into consideration and properly addressed,” said Salvio Forturo, chairperson of house poverty alleviation committee.

Aquino vetoed the previous bill as he found several provisions of the proposed law unrealistic. He cited the right to shelter, which would cost the government at least P2.32 trillion approximately equivalent to country’s yearly budget.

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