Palace blames Congress for stalled pay hike of state workers |
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Palace blames Congress for stalled pay hike of state workers

/ 02:39 PM January 14, 2019
Palace blames Congress for stalled pay hike of state workers

Chief Presidential Legal Counsel and Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo. INQUIRER PHOTO/LYN RILLON

MANILA, Philippines — It is Congress, not the executive department, that is holding hostage the scheduled increase in the salary of state workers.

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said this on Monday when asked if Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno is the one holding the salary hike hostage after House Majority Leader Rolando Andaya accused him of withholding the release of fourth and last tranche of government workers’ pay increase under the Salary Standardization Law (SSL).

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“The one holding (the salary hike) hostage would be Congress, not the executive department,” Panelo said in a Palace briefing.

Panelo defended Diokno by saying that since the 2018 budget is reenacted, there could be no source of funding for the fourth tranche of pay hikes for government personnel.

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The House of Representatives already approved the 2019 national budget but it remains pending in the Senate, prompting the government to operate on a reenacted budget for the first month of 2019.

Diokno earlier said delay in the 2019 national budget approval would also stall the release of the fourth tranche of salary increase for state workers.

Andaya and other lawmakers, however, refuted Diokno, claiming the release of fund for wage increase could be possible ahead of the approval of this year’s expenditure plan.

READ: Andaya to sue Diokno if DBM fails to hike gov’t workers’ salary by Jan. 15

On Monday, Andaya sought relief from the Supreme Court to compel Diokno and the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) to release the fourth tranche of salary adjustment for government employees.

Malacañang would let SC decide on Andaya’s petition.

“Since there is already a mandamus petition before the court, it becomes sub judice, we will let the court decide on it. It will necessarily ask the respondent (Sec.) Ben Diokno to respond and then when the issues meet, they will resolve,” Panelo said.

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READ: SC asked: Compel DBM to release 4th tranche of gov’t workers’ wage hike

/kga

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TAGS: 2019 national budget, Ben Diokno, GAA 2019, Local news, Nation, national news, News, Philippine news updates, Politics, Rodrigo Duterte, Rolando Andaya, salary hike, Salvador Panelo, SSL, Supreme Court
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