The Pangkabuhayang QC program of the Quezon City government has received more than 10,000 applications for start-up capital financial assistance days before its final deadline, completing the target number of applicants for Phase 1.
Following the number of applications submitted today, the Small Business and Cooperatives Development and Promotions Office (SBCDPO) has announced that online and offline applications are temporarily on hold to give way to the evaluation of all documents received. No applications will be accepted on November 2, the supposed last day of filing. Instead, interested QCitizens are encouraged to wait for the announcement for Phase 2 of the program.
On Friday, crowds flocked at the Quezon City Hall grounds hoping to receive “ayuda” from the Quezon City government after they were told from unverified and fake news sources that they can receive money just by falling in line.
Mayor Joy Belmonte clarified this notion and stressesed that the program Pangkabuhayang QC has been accepting applicants since September for those who are planning to start their own business.
“It was the fake news that led to the influx of people today. From the investigation of our team, people lined up as early as last night with the idea that they can receive P10,000 just by falling in line. An estimated 85% of the people who went to city hall were not interested in starting a business but were there to get the alleged “ayuda”. They not have application forms and the necessary documents to support any business plans for the program,” Mayor Belmonte said.
Last week, the city government had already debunked a Facebook post that encouraged people to apply for quick cash assistance per household.
“We prepared for the last-minute applicants because people really tend to submit requirements up to the last minute however, we were surprised to learn that people were falling in line without proper information about what the lines are for,” Mayor Belmonte said.
The Pangkabuhayang QC, a livelihood training and financial assistance program for QCitizens who have lost their jobs during the pandemic or whose businesses suffered due to the pandemic, was launched last September 6. Since then, the SBCDPO has been receiving an average of 150 applications per day.
The city government has allotted P 150 million for the program’s first phase and each applicant stands to receive from
P 5,000-20,000 depending on their choice of business.
SBCDPO Head Mona Celine Yap clarified that all applications will undergo necessary screening and verification to check if the person’s current or planned business model is legitimate or if there are duplicate applications.
“We understand that many QCitizens were greatly affected by the pandemic but we shall prioritize those with existing businesses or planning to start their own business as a way to recover from the pandemic. The objective of this program, aside from helping displaced workers, is to encourage business activity for swift economic recovery from the pandemic,” Yap said.
“For those who are planning to start their own business, the local government still has other programs for start-up micro and small entrepreneurs. We are focused on economic recovery and we assure QCitizens that our focus is on helping our business owners,” Belmonte added.