DSWD Sec. Dinky Soliman Reacts to Critics About Hiding Poverty During APEC Summit

The controversial head of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Sec. Dinky Soliman reacts to her critics regarding the allegation that her agency was responsible for hiding the street children and poor residents of Metro Manila during the recently concluded APEC Summit hosted by the Philippines.

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According to the DSWD Secretary, the DSWD are not hiding homeless people as poverty itself cannot be cloaked. This was the statement of the DSWD chief amid continuous allegations that the DSWD cleared out street dwellers for the recently concluded Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit in Manila.

Sec. Dinky Soliman was quoted as saying “Again, I say, we cannot hide poverty. And just to give you the numbers: Only 77 families were reached out [to] by the city of Manila [on] the days [prior the Apec summit]—a week before,” an emotional Soliman told reporters.

The last time the DSWD secretary was involved in a controversy was when 100 homeless families were brought in a resort in Batangas during the visit of Pope Francis in January, supposedly to attend a seminar.

In the latest allegations thrown at Sec. Dinky Soliman, the secretary reiterated that the DSWD did not take homeless families away from the streets just because of an international event being held in the country, but because the department wanted to protect them.

She was quoted as saying “Tuluy-tuloy po ang pakikipag-ugnayan, mandato po ng lokal na pamahalaan na siguraduhin na ang mga bata, mga pamilya ay kanilang napo-proteksyunan, at hindi po pagpoprotekta ang pananatili nila sa kalsada… Hindi po sila kinukuha dahil lang may Apec. ‘Yung sinabing nagbalikan na daw po ang mga bata at pamilya,” Soliman said.


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