Estrada to award 13 more centenarians with P100,000 cash

The Daily Tribune| Written by: Pat C. Santos| October 06, 2016

To honor Manila’s senior citizens this Elderly Filipino Week, Mayor Joseph “Erap” Estrada will award 13 centenarians — city residents who have reached 100 years old or more — with P100,000 cash gift each.

Estrada said the centenarians deserve such simple token from the city government for being the nation’s role models, having led long, distinguished, healthy and disciplined lives.

“Living to a hundred years old, about three decades past the life expectancy, is extremely rare today,” the Manila mayor said, citing a report from the World Health Organization (WHO) that shows life expectancy in the Philippines is 65.4 for men and 72.5 for women.

“Our living centenarians indeed deserve to be honored and granted this financial assistance they need,” Estrada added as he approved the release of P1.3 million from the Special Activities Fund.

Proclamation No. 470 signed by then President Fidel Ramos in 1994 designated October 1 to 7 as the Elderly Filipino Week or Linggo ng Nakatatandang Filipino to emphasize the important role that older persons play in nation building as well as raise and address issues concerning the sector.

The 13 centenarians composed the second batch of 100-year-old Manileños that would be given the P100,000 cash gift. Last April, Estrada personally gave P100,000 checks each to 17 centenarians.

The 13 new beneficiaries of the program are Teodoro Ilagan from District 1; Aracelie Javalera, District 2; Alberto Hernandez, District 4; Felipe Mañalac, District 4; Ildefonsa Pardilla, District 4; Raquel Cabanilla, District 4; Casimira Lopez, District 5; Teresa Arriola, District 5; Juliana Aranas, District 5, and Josefa Asperilla, Eudocio Manaois and Manuela Felicidad Mangilit, all from District 6.

Lopez and Mangilit are the oldest of the batch at 102, according to Herminia Salonga, officer-in-charge of the Office of the Senior Citizens Affairs.

Salonga said the centenarians will receive their cash gift at soonest possible time.

The P100,000 cash gift program has been authorized by Ordinance No. 8483 approved by Estrada on March 17, 2016.

Under the ordinance authored by then District 3 councilor and now District 3 Rep. Yul Servo, every living centenarian shall, within 30 days from his or her 100th birthday, receive a cash gift of P100,000 from the city government.

On the other hand, centenarians who reached the age of 100 prior to the passage of the ordinance shall also receive the cash gift. The centenarian-beneficiaries should be residents of Manila for at last one year.

With his motto “Bata’t matanda, alaga sa Maynila,” Estrada said. Senior citizens occupy a special place in his heart because his mother, Doña Mary Ejercito, died on Jan. 13, 2009 at the age of 103.

Aside from the P100,000 cash gift, every centenarian receives P10,000 each during the yearly celebration of Araw ng Maynila on June 24, Salonga said.

“Mayor Estrada wants to honor our senior citizens by giving them a wide array of services and benefits that befit the sacrifices they have made for their families and society,” Salonga said.

Senior citizens in Manila, which number around 130,000, are also entitled to free medical checkups, hospitalization, medicines and other healthcare services from the six city-run public hospitals and 59 community health centers. They also receive P500 cash gift on their birthdays.

Manila’s elderly can also watch movies for free on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays in any movie house in the city.