President Rodrigo Duterte has already approved the pension hike.
Now it can be said, the two million or so pensioners of the Social Security System (SSS) can now look forward to one thousand pesos (PhP1,000) more in their monthly pension starting this month (January) and possibly another PhP1,000 in 2022 or earlier. The good news was announced by Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella in a televised broadcast on January 10th.
While lower than the PhP2,000 proposed by legislators, it is still a very welcome news for senior citizens who have been complaining about the low pension amount, which they say are not even sufficient to pay for their maintenance medicines. Former President Noynoy Aquino vetoed the proposed pension increase bill around the same time last year in 2016.
The not-so-good news, however, is that the pension hike will mean an increase in contributions of SSS members to 12.5% (from 11%) starting May this year. It will amount to between PhP15 and PhP740.
The announcement will finally put to rest pensioners’ anxiety over the much-anticipated pension hike. Especially since late last year, President Duterte’s economic managers opposed the hike fearing that the SSS fund will be depleted. But now, SSS has reassured its contributors that there is enough fund for the pension increase. All’s well that ends well.
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