The House of Representatives revived the proposal for the Social Security System (SSS) pension hike to the committee level on Wednesday. Bayan Muna Rep. Carlos Zarate said he hoped the bill will be approved by the 17th Congress soon.
Here are three fast facts about the SSS Pension Hike Committee Approval In Congress.
1. The House committee on government enterprises and privatization approved the motion for the omnibus approval of the 15 bills for the SSS pension hike. Most of these bills aimed for an increase of P2,000 worth of pension.
Zarate, who is one of the authors of the proposed bill, said that the country’s senior citizens have long since deserved an increase of their pension. Early this year, former President Benigno Aquino vetoed this bill reasoning that an increase of pension beneficiaries would compromise the stability of the entire SSS benefit system.
“That doomsday scenario they are painting is not true because our laws provide that Congress can allocate subsidy to the SSS in the event that it runs out of fund,” Manila Times reported Zarate as saying. He added that the government will always be there for the SSS.
2. This approval will endorse the bills for a second reading approval at the plenary.
Once approved, Zarate said that the SSS members will not be required to pay for higher premiums because the SSS has adequate funding for a pension increase.
“The SSS has funds,” Zarate said. He also added that the SSS can find ways to manage its finances such as through investment returns and cutting of overhead expenses.
3. Former President and now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Arroyo favored the increase of SSS pension to members. However, SSS Senior Vice President George Ongkeko warned that the funds of the SSS will not be enough to accommodate this increase.
The proposed law would have increased the monthly pension by P2,000 across-the-board to P3,200 from P1,200 for those with 10 credited years of service. Pensioners with 20 years of service will have P4,000 from P2,400 pension.
Ongkeko said SSS will need P56 billion for the P2,000 pension hike. He added that SSS is bound to follow the law once the bill would be approved.
“If we ran out of actuarial life by 2015, we can call in a government guarantee from the Department of Budget and Management,” Ongkeko said.
What do you think of the SSS Pension Hike Committee approval in Congress? Let us know in the comments section below.