The House of Representatives has approved on second reading House Bill 725 seeking to raise the monthly pension of senior veterans to augment their resources and enable them to live decently and with dignity.

The bill principally authored by Rep. Geraldine Roman provides that the old age pension of senior veterans shall be increased from P5,000 to P20,000.

The bill provides that the old age pension of senior veterans shall be increased from P5,000 to P20,000.

The old age pension increase shall cover veterans of World War II, Korean and Vietnam Wars, provided that the veterans of the Korean and Vietnam wars are not receiving pension from the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).

Moreover, the entitlement to the increase in old age pension shall be limited to eligible living senior veterans and shall not be transferable to any family member or dependent of the senior citizen.

The amount necessary for the initial implementation of the increase in old pension shall be charged against the current year’s available appropriations of the Philippine Veterans Affairs Office (PVAO).

The funds needed for the continued implementation of the increase shall be included in the annual General Appropriations Act.

Roman said the current pension of P5,000.00 enacted almost 21 years ago is not enough for senior veterans to meet the basic necessities for decent living.

“Our veterans have sacrificed much for our country. People who have dedicated their lives in the service of the country should, at the very least, be able to live out the days of their days comfortably without worrying about their basic needs,” the legislator explained.

The Bataan lawmaker said that at present, the veterans face a new challenge – the hardships of old age along with meager resources that they must stretch in order to survive.

“We must recompense our veterans in a manner fitting to what they have given. The proposed increase of benefits for the veterans is a way to show the nation’s grateful appreciation for their bravery, service, and sacrifice,” said Roman.

The bill is co-authored by Reps. Deogracias Victor Savellano, Leopoldo Bataoil, Karlo Alexei Nograles, Rozzano Rufino Biazon, Noel Villanueva, Teodoro Montoro, Romeo Acop, Amado Espino Jr., Gloria MAcapagal-Arroyo, and Pablo Ortega.

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