Full implementation of P2,000 SSS pension hike doable —labor leader

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Published January 14, 2017 5:10pm

By ERWIN COLCOL, GMA News

A labor leader said Saturday that the P2,000 pension hike for retired Social Security System members could possibly be given all at once and not on an installment basis.

At a weekly media forum in Quezon City on Saturday, National Labor Union President Dave Diwa argued that the SSS can afford P2,000 monthly pension hike because of the combined increase of contributions and the raise of maximum monthly salary credit.

“Sa argumentong walang pondo, precisely nga nag-increase sila ngayon ng 1.5 percent tapos tinaas pa nila ‘yung cap doon sa salary ceiling, meron na,” Diwa said.

Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella last Tuesday announced that President Rodrigo Duterte has approved a P1,000 pension hike for some two million retired SSS members.

Another P1,000 is scheduled to be given in 2022, SSS Chairman Amado Valdez said.

The pension hike comes with a 1.5-percent increase in premiums of active members starting May and a raise of the maximum monthly salary credit to P20,000 from the current P16,000.

“A minimum wage earner in Metro Manila receiving daily wage of P491 or P12,766 a month will now pay to the SSS pension fund P1,595 or thereabouts,” Diwa said.

“Simply raising the cap on the MSC (monthly salary credit)… will yield an additional P500 to P1,000 per month,” he added.

Diwa also noted the plan to raise the SSS contribution rate annually over the next five years as a means to raise sufficient fund for the P2,000 pension hike.

“Sinasabi nila na mag-i-increase sila ng one percent every year, beginning next year, for the next five years. So that would bring the contribution rate to 17 percent, so may sufficient pera na. No reason no to give P2,000,” Diwa said.

Duterte’s economic managers had opposed a proposal to increase the pension to P2,000, with the President saying he was looking for a “win-win solution.”

During the presidential campaign, Duterte had promised the increase. His predecessor Benigno Aquino III had vetoed a law mandating a P2,000 pension increase.

Despite their proposal, Diwa said consultations and further study on the matter should be held to properly implement the pension hike.

“Pabor kami na taasan ‘yung premium contribution but that has to be done separately, may pag-aaral, may consultation,” Diwa said.

For him, contribution increase should not be a problem for employers and employees, as they will both benefit from it in the future.

“Unang magrereklamo diyan ay ‘yung employer talaga. Ang ginawa nila ngayon, pareho, employer tsaka employee. Dati mas malaki ang employer. May impact diyan pero overall, hindi dapat magreklamo ang manggagawa dahil mapupunta sa kanya yan e,” he said. —LBG, GMA News

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