File photo shows military personnel.
The STAR/Miguel de Guzman, File
Bill seeks to hike hazard pay of Armed Forces personnel in conflict areas
Gaea Katreena Cabico (Philstar.com) - October 14, 2019 - 12:43pm

MANILA, Philippines — Sen. Manny Pacquiao filed a bill seeking to increase the monthly hazard pay of military personnel assigned in conflict areas to as much as P20,000 from the current P540.

“Personnel of the Armed Forces of the Philippines are the country’s frontlines in dealing with apprehensions in the borders and tensions with terrorist and extremist groups. The AFP defends our country despite the exposure to danger and possibly risking their lives,” Pacquiao, an Army reservist, said in the explanatory note of Senate Bill 970.

The bill, if passed into law, will also adjust the hazard pay for doctors and nurses deployed to conflict areas to P10,000 monthly.

“The State’s national security is essential in maintaining peace and order in our country. With this, it is appropriate to compensate those who risk their lives to serve and protect our country,” Pacquaio said.

Funding for the implementation of the proposed legislation will be included in the annual General Appropriations Act.

In 2017, Pacquiao was promoted to the rank of a full-fledged colonel after finishing his General Staff Course. The boxing champion-turned-lawmaker first enlisted in the Army Reserve Force with the rank of sergeant in 2006.

Pacquiao introduced the bill months after the base pay increase for military and other uniformed personnel became effective this year. In 2018, President Rodrigo Duterte signed a joint resolution authorizing a pay increase for the military, the police and other uniformed personnel in the government.

Last week, Duterte mentioned in passing a pay hike of “35% or more” for teachers within the year after the government adjusted the compensation of soldiers and policemen.

But the Alliance of Concerned Teachers said 35% pay increase “is not enough to allow us a decent living and dignify our profession.”

There were at least five bills in the upper house seeking to increase the salaries of or give additional compensation to educators.

ARMED FORCES OF THE PHILIPPINES MANNY PACQUIAO
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