DAVAO CITY – A day after President Benigno Aquino III vetoed the bill seeking P2,000 pension hike for Social Security System members, workers staged a protest action in Mendiola to protest the decision Friday.
Members of Kilusang Mayo Uno threw eggs and rotten tomatoes to an image of Pres. Aquino to show their condemnation over the veto made against House Bill 5842 filed by Bayan Muna Rep. Neri Colmenares.
“Pensioners, their families, the Filipino workers and people are angry over Aquino’s heartless veto of the SSS pension hike. Everyone who pushed for this measure and wanted it to be passed are indignant that he simply vetoed this form of immediate relief,” said Roger Soluta, KMU vice-chairperson.
The labor leader cited the study of independent labor NGO Ecumenical Institute for Labor Education and Research saying the P56 billion annual total of the pension hike can be shouldered by the SSS, given the latter’s P160-billion annual revenue and P428-billion reserved investment funds.
“(Pres.) Aquino is trying to deceive the public by invoking numbers that try to show that the SSS would be rendered bankrupt by the pension hike. The truth is that the SSS has funds for the hike and that it can and must take various measures to increase its fund life,” Soluta added.
He said that the SSS should improve its collection efficiency, which currently stands at 40 percent, penalize delinquent employers by filing charges against them, do away with the salaries and bonuses of its top officials amounting to millions, and reduce its overhead costs.
“We are calling on all SSS pensioners, their families, all workers and Filipinos, to make our clamor louder. Let us continue to speak up on social media, use pensioners and senior citizens’ activities to voice out our demands, and join protests and other activities for our demand,” he said.
The group said they will hold another protest march in Mendiola on Monday morning. (davaotoday.com)