Drilon belies claims decision to raise govt workers’ salary happens only now

MEETING WITH JUSTICE CARPIO ON WEST PHL SEA ISSUE: Senate President Franklin M. Drilon (left) and Supreme Court Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio (right) were all smiles after a briefing with senators on the West Philippine Sea issue at the Senate on August 12, 2015, Wednesday. Carpio was invited by Drilon to discuss with the senators the latest developments regarding the territorial disputes between the Philippines and China on the West Philippine Sea, currently the subject of a case lodged at the Arbitral Tribunal of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). (MNS photo)

MEETING WITH JUSTICE CARPIO ON WEST PHL SEA ISSUE: Senate President Franklin M. Drilon (left) and Supreme Court Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio (right) were all smiles after a briefing with senators on the West Philippine Sea issue at the Senate on August 12, 2015, Wednesday. Carpio was invited by Drilon to discuss with the senators the latest developments regarding the territorial disputes between the Philippines and China on the West Philippine Sea, currently the subject of a case lodged at the Arbitral Tribunal of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). (MNS photo)

MANILA (Mabuhay) — Senate President Franklin Drilon on Thursday insisted that the planned salary hike for government workers is already the fourth under the present administration, disputing critics’ claims that the decision on the pay raise was only made at the end of President Benigno Aquino III’s term.

“Binibigyan ko ng diin itong Salary Standardization IV: pang-apat na beses na po ito. Regular na binabantayan ni Pangulong Noynoy (Aquino) ang pagtaas ng sahod ng ating mga kawani sa pamahalaan,” Drilon said.

“Talagang itataas po ang sahod ng ating mga manggagawa,” he added.

Malacañang is asking for P67 billion from the Congress for the merit increases and across-the-board salary adjustment of government workers starting January 1, 2016.

“Magkakaroon po ng salary adjustment ng mga mahigit sa P50 billion sa kabuuan, at mayroon pa pong mahigit sa P17 billion na para sa merit increases, kaya sa kabuuan po ay P67 billion ang nakalaan sa budget para sa sahod ng ating mga manggagawa sa pamahalaan,” he said.

In referring to the proposed 2016 budget, Drilon said, “Ito po ay … isang budget na talagang diretso sa tao ang … benepisyo, at ito po ay … makatutulong sa buong sambayanan.”

Last Wednesday, Senator Ralph Recto urged Budget Secretary Florencio Abad to submit to them the soonest the bill seeking to raise the salary of 1.3 million state workers.

He said the proposal for the salary hike can be tackled “in unison” with the national budget. “You cannot separate the two [because] 27 centavos for every peso budget in 2016 is for personnel services.”

“There is also the need to subject the proposal to feedback and consultation from stakeholders, like government employees. Kung ano man ang numero, dapat pag-aralan kung sapat ba ito o kulang,” he added. (MNS)

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