LEYTE (1st District) Rep. Yedda Marie Kittilstvedt-Romualdez said the proposed P2,000 hike in the pension of 2.15 million Social Security System pensioners “is a good gift to our elderly” as she expressed “hope that Congress will rally behind its passage until it becomes a law.
This developed as the House committee on government enterprises and privatization approved the committee report seeking a P2,000-increase in the pension of 2.15 million Social Security System (SSS) pensioners.
“This would show ‘malasakit’ (compassion) and extend economic relief to retired private workers who are in their sunset years. The increase on their monthly pension is a good act of Congress to champion their plight,” said Romualdez, wife of former House Independent Bloc Leader Martin Romualdez of Leyte who had been steadfast in supporting the passage of the measure during the recently-concluded 16th Congress.
House Deputy Speaker and Batangas Rep. Raneo Abu welcomed the passage of the proposal as a show of President Rodrigo “Rody” Duterte’s commitment to help the pensioners.
“This is a very worthy proposal that would show Congress’ sincere desire to serve people’s interests. It is feasible, necessary and urgent. The current pension benefit was not adjusted enough to meet the current cost of living standards. A major step towards sharing the inclusive growth to the elderly. I hope the Senate will also expedite the passage of the measure aimed at easing the plight of our SSS pensioners,” Abu pointed out.
North Cotabato Rep. Jesus N. Sacdalan, who chairs the House committee on government enterprises, said they were able to talk to SSS officials during an executive session where they find a way to invest the money to ensure its financial viability like investing on Public-Private Partnership (PPP) agreement.
Last September 7, the House committee on government enterprises and privatization has approved 16 bills all seeking to provide a P2,000 across-the-board increase in the monthly pension under the SSS with a corresponding adjustment of the minimum monthly pension.
The panel approved the bills which seek to amend Section 12 of Republic Act (RA) No. 1161, as amended, otherwise known as the “Social Security Act of 1997.”
About two million current and future SSS pensioners and their families stand to benefit from the proposal.
The proposed amendment to Section 12 of RA No. 1161 provides that the minimum monthly pension shall be P3,200 for members with at least 10 credited years of service and P4,400 for those with 20 credited years of service.
At present, the law provides for a minimum monthly pension of P1,200 for members with at least 10 credited years of service and P2,400 for those with 20 credited years of service.
The committee members agreed to adopt the committee report of the 16th Congress, which consolidated various proposals on the P2,000 across-the-board SSS monthly pension to help fast-track enactment of the pension proposal this 17th Congress.
The House and the Senate approved the proposal during the 16th Congress but this was vetoed by former President Aquino.
Approved were HB Nos. 59 and 471 authored by Reps. Antonio Tinio and France Castro; 136 by Reps. Rodel Batocabe, Alfredo Garbin, Jr. and Christopher Co; 361 by Rep. Maria Carmen Zamora; 734 by Rep. Evelina Escudero; 871 by Rep. Rogelio Espina, M.D.; 1017 by Rep. Leopoldo Bataoil; 1087 by Rep. Scott Davies Lanete, M.D.; 1466 and 1552 by Rep. Harlin Neil Abayon III; 1592 and 1097 by Rep. Winston Castelo; 1608 by Rep. Mercedes Cagas; 1671 by Rep. Strike Revilla; 1780 by Rep. Nancy Catamco; 1864 by Rep. Christopher “Toff” Vera Perez de Venecia; 1880 by Rep. Jerry Treñas; 1989 by Rep. Randolf Ting; 2449 by Rep. Arthur Yap; 2569 by Rep. Maximo Rodriguez, Jr.; 2865 by Rep. Evelina Escudero; 3127 by Rep. Marlyn Primicias-Agabas; 18 by Rep. Rozzano Rufino Biazon; 71 by Rep. Alfred Vargas; 208 by Rep. Micaela Violago; 405 by Rep. Rodrigo Abellanosa; 414 by Rep. Tobias Tiangco; 475 by Reps. Carlos Zarate, Tinio, Emmi de Jesus, Castro, Arlene Brosas, Ariel Casilao, and Sarah Jane Elago; 1036 by Rep. Angelia D. Tan; 1323
by Rep. Johnny Pimentel; 481 by for Rep. Mark Villar; 1036 by Angelia Tan, M.D.; 1836 by Rep. Bernadette Herrera-Dy; 1853 by Rep. Mark Go; 1856 by Rep. Sol Aragones; 1947 by Rep. Vilma Santos-Recto; 2277 by Rep. Gus Tambunting; and 3120 by Rep. Salvio Fortuno.