The 2012 poverty estimates recently released by the National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB) showed a gradual decrease in the region’s poverty incidence.
The 2012 Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) family poverty incidence was estimated at 17. 5 percent which is much lower than the 19.2 percent incidence in 2009. This means the poor families in 2009 have decreased by 595 families in 2012.
There were 66,111 poor families in 2009 compared to the 65,516 families in 2012.
Most provinces have a reduced family poverty incidence. Only Apayao and Ifugao have recorded increased poverty incidence.
Apayao’s 54.7 percent family poverty incidence is the third highest poverty incidence among provinces in the country next to only Lanao’s 67.3 percent and Eastern Samar’s 55.4 percent.
The 2.8 percent family poverty incidence of Benguet is second least poor province in the whole country next only to Cavite’s 2.6 percent family poverty incidence.
National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) said the gradual decrease in CAR’s poverty incidence was partly a result of all efforts, making poverty reduction the centre of development agenda as indicated in the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
The MDG Watch of CAR, a statistical releases by NSCB that monitors probability of achieving the MDG targets, asserted that the region’s provinces, except for Abra has a high probability of halving, between 1990 and 2015, the proportion of people who suffer from hunger.
NEDA added that the intensified implementation of the social programs indicated in the Regional Development Plan (RDP) such as the conditional cash transfer (CCT) or the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program implemented by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has also eased poverty in CAR. A number of 57,443 are benefitting from the program as indicated in the Regional Project Monitoring and Evaluation System (RPMES) report.
The CCT however is a long term program which is not expected to reduce poverty that quick. Moreover, the CCT is not the sole solution to poverty alleviation. Programs on employment, shelter, livelihood, education, agriculture, health and nutrition should be congregated.
by Shah Balaw-ing