By U.S. News Agency / Asian
Cebu City Hall will hire only 300 students for its summer job program this year, a drastic cut from the 2,200 students it hired last year.
The city also reduced the budget for the implementation of the Special Program for Employment of Students (SPES) from P11 million last year, an election year, to only P1.8 million this year.
City Hall, however increased the daily salary of the beneficiaries to P300 from P267 last year, as specified in the project proposal of the Department of Manpower Development and Placement (DMDP) for this year’s SPES.
Cebu City Councilor Sisinio Andales, chairman of the City Council committee on labor, employment, livelihood and manpower development, said they reduced the number of beneficiaries this year due to the lack of funds.
In 2010, the city hired some 2,200 students for the city’s SPES were only 300 students. In 2009, 681 students were hired.
Last year, the sudden increase of the number of beneficiaries and the budget for the SPES drew criticisms from opposition candidates, who said that the program was part of then mayor Tomas Osmena’s vote-buying spree.
Osmena ran and was elected congressman of the south district.
He explained that time that the city had more funds to spare for the program, that’s why they were able to hire more students.
Every year, the city offers summer jobs to poor but deserving high school and college student sin line with Republic Act (RA) 7223.
The law seeks to help student gain experience and earn some cash, which they can use in time for the opening of classes in June.
The SPES caters to students 18 to 24 years old, and who are enrolled for the current school year.
Out of school youths can also avail themselves of the program provided that they are going to enroll after the program.
The 20-day summer job will start on April 4 and will end on May 3 for the first batch. The second batch will report to work from May 4 to May 31.