THE Eastern Visayas region has 61,196 claimants of the P5,000 financial aid meant for those who were left out during the distribution of emergency shelter assistance (ESA), the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) said.

DSWD Regional Director Restituto Macuto said the list of additional claimants was based on the information provided by people’s organizations, like the People Surge.

“All of them were listed before November 8, 2016 and they are entitled to receive the ESA, as validated by our agency,” Macuto said.

He said those who have received assistance from the government, such as housing assistance, are not allowed to receive the ESA, but those who have received assistance from private organizations may still receive the P5,000 cash aid.

Those who are living in areas declared as no-build zones and are not recipients of any assistance from the government will also receive the shelter assistance, he added.

The DSWD will no longer conduct on-site validation, rather they will re-check the spelling of names to avoid any problem during the actual distribution.

“If their names are not spelled correctly, we might have a problem in the issuance of checks,” Macuto said.

The DSWD is set to distribute the ESA to more than 194,000 recipients in all Yolanda-hit areas in the central Philippines before the end of March.

Before February 10, the field office will send the list of names with correct spelling to their central office.

Between 2013 and 2015, the government had distributed P30,000 in ESA for each family whose house was totally damaged and P10,000 for each family whose house was partially damaged. (PNA)