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Lacson to Diokno: Release gov’t workers’ pay hike now

By: - Reporter / @MAgerINQ
/ 12:04 PM January 10, 2019
‘Pork-laden budget worse than delayed, reenacted one’

Senator Panfilo Lacson. INQUIRER FILE

MANILA, Philippines — “Mr. DBM Secretary, implement the salary increase now.”

Senator Panfilo Lacson made this appeal to Department of Budget and Management (DBM) Secretary Benjamin Diokno in a Twitter post on Thursday.

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Lacson made the call after Diokno said that the fourth tranche of the salary increase of government workers could not be released unless the 2019 national budget is approved.

READ: Gov’t pay hike delayed due to stalled budget

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The proposed national budget for this year is pending before the Senate after some senators including Lacson insisted on reviewing it for “pork.”

READ: Lacson backs tight scrutiny of 2019 budget

In 2016, then President Benigno Aquino III issued Executive Order No. 201, granting government employees four tranches of salary increases starting that year until 2019.

Diokno said it would be unconstitutional to release the scheduled pay hike this year without the approved 2019 budget.

The fourth and last installment of the pay increase is included in the P1.185 trillion allocated for personnel expenses as embodied in the proposed national budget for 2019.

But Lacson contradicted Diokno.

“It is not unconstitutional. It has basis in law and there is Php 99.446 B under the MPBF (Miscellaneous Personnel Benefits Fund) in the 2018 budget,” the senator said.

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“Pointing to a re-enacted budget won’t fly,” Lacson added.

Senate approval of the 2019 budget has been derailed amid questions raised on alleged billions worth of so-called “pork” insertions. /cbb

REA: Lacson: 2 lawmakers get P1.5 billion in pork each

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