Napolcom : PNP benefits for cops who die on duty not double compensation
MANILA, Philippines — The National Police Commission (Napolcom) insisted on Tuesday that the benefits it pays police officers who are permanently incapacitated, or who were killed while in duty or while in action is legal and does not constitute double compensation.
Napolcom issued the statement after the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) temporarily suspended the payment of benefits being claimed by the police commission under its PNP Welfare Benefits Program, saying that it is “double compensation” as the Philippine National Police (PNP) also grants the same benefits.
In a letter dated Nov. 19, the DBM claimed that the payment of benefit claims is inconsistent with Section 8, Article IX-B of the Constitution which prohibits the grant of additional or double compensation.
Meanwhile, on Jan. 14, the Commission on Audit (COA) issued an Audit Observation Memorandum (AOM) which stated that the payment of benefits by the Napolcom and the PNP constitutes double compensation.
“Both the DBM letter and COA report claimed that the payment of separate police benefits by the NAPOLCOM, under the PNP Welfare Benefits Program, and the PNP, under the PNP Retirement Benefits Program, constitutes double compensation,” Napolcom vice chairman and executive officer Rogelio Casurao said in a statement.
The Napolcom, however, insists that the benefits provided by the Napolcom and PNP to policemen retirees and beneficiaries are “distinct and separate from each other.”
It explained that the benefits program the Commission administers grants the gratuity pay and monthly pension to PNP retirees who were permanently incapacitated while in the performance of duty (TPPD benefits) and to the beneficiaries of PNP members who have died in the line of duty or death benefits.
The PNP does not give death and TPPD benefits, but only grants sickness benefits. Aside from the gratuity pay and pension, only the Napolcom grants burial pay to PNP beneficiaries.
Meanwhile, Napolcom said that under the PNP Retirement Benefits program, all police retirees receive gratuity pay or pension depending on the length of service and whether their retirement is due to compulsory or optional retirement, disability or death.
It its reply and comment to the DBM letter and the AOM, the Napolcom said the death and TPPD benefits being given by Napolcom to police officers and their beneficiaries are legal and do not constitute double compensation, citing Section 8, Article 9-B of the 1987 Constitution which stated that pensions or gratuities “shall not be considered as additional, double, or indirect compensation.”
It added that Section 76 of Republic Act No. 6975 provides that a uniformed personnel and/or his heirs shall be entitled to all benefits relative to the death or permanent incapacity of said personnel.
According to the Napolcom, while Congress amended Section 73 of Republic Act No. 6975, lawmakers did not remove the authority of the Napolcom to continue granting benefits to police officers who are killed in the line of duty or have retired from the service.
“We assure our police pensioners and PNP beneficiaries that the NAPOLCOM will exhaust all possible options and legal means to ensure that the Commission can continuously grant well-deserved benefits for the welfare and interest of our police officers who risk and sacrifice their lives to protect the people and the country,” Casurao said.
Edited by MUF
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