Cagayan de Oro City Rep. Rufus Rodriguez proposed to double the monthly pension of senior citizens to P1,000 to tide them over amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) crisis.

In filing House Bill 7266, Rodriguez said the current monthly stipend at P500 being received under Republic Act No. 9994 (Expanded Senior Citizens Act) should at least be doubled to help senior citizens especially at this time of the pandemic.

“P500 a month is not much.”

“P500 a month is not much. It’s not even enough for basic maintenance medicines,” the veteran legislator said.

The seasoned lawmaker noted that only 29 percent of the 7.5 million Filipino senior citizens receive the allowance “because the law is very restrictive.”

Under the law, a senior citizen can qualify for the stipend if he is “frail, sickly or with a disability, and without pension or permanent source of income, compensation or financial assistance from his/her relatives to support his/her basic needs.”

“Because of these restrictions, millions of senior citizens are being deprived of the social pension they are entitled to,” he said.

The bill seeks to remove the phrase “frail, sickly and with a disability, and without pension”, and the phrase pertaining to financial assistance from relatives.

“The objective of the law is to recognize the rights of senior citizens to take their proper place in society and make it a concern of the family, community, and government, and to give full support to the improvement of the total well-being of the elderly and their full participation in society,” Rodriguez said.

“All senior citizens should receive the P1,000 monthly allowance from the government.”

He stressed that all senior citizens should receive the proposed P1,000 monthly allowance from the government.

The only qualification the bill would impose on a recipient is that he/she should not be receiving a pension from any public or private pension of more than P4,000 a month.

This is an initial amount that can be gradually increased to be able to give to more seniors in the future.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *