PDEA seeks P180M for hazard pay of its agents-A A +A
Wednesday, September 18, 2013
THE Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) has asked President Benigno Aquino III to approve the allocation of some P180 million for the hazard pay of its 1,200 agents, an official said Wednesday.
PDEA Director General Undersecretary Arturo Cacdac Jr. said that beneficiaries of the hazard pay will be the anti-narcotics agents who are directly exposed to varied dangers and health risks during the conduct of anti-illegal drug operations.
“The hazard pay is an initiative that will boost morale and increase productivity and efficiency of PDEA operatives and personnel,” he said.
Cacdac said that his office has requested the Office of the President for the issuance of an Executive Order granting hazard pay to 1,285 deserving PDEA personnel that will require an annual allocation of P180,846,596.00.
The PDEA personnel who were recommended to be entitled to hazard pay include the directors, intelligence officers, investigation agents, security officers and special investigators, and animal handlers who are actually involved or participating in the conduct of anti-drug operations.
Other PDEA employees who should be covered by hazard pay include chemists, laboratory technicians and aides, prison guards, dangerous drugs regulation officers, and legal officers.
Since its inception in 2002, PDEA personnel have encountered occupational risks and great danger, and even death, Cacdac said, noting that seven PDEA operatives were killed in action; 31 wounded; 25 hurt; and 110 threatened.
“Just the other day, a PDEA personnel was shot dead by an unidentified assailant in Cebu City while another was wounded in a brief gunfight with one of the suspects during a buy-bust operation in Marikina City,” he said.
“Based on the records of our casualties and injured personnel and the inherent risks involved, it is but proper that PDEA personnel deserve to be granted hazard pay,” he said.
The Director General said that personnel of other government agencies performing hazardous duties such as the Philippine National Police (PNP), National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) and Department of Health (DOH) were given hazard pay due to the nature of their job. (SDR/Sunnex)