PHILIPPINE National Police (PNP) chief Ronald Dela Rosa justified the salary increase granted to uniformed personnel, saying it is government's way of recognizing their performance, especially when they risk their lives to ensure the safety of the public.
“’Yung buhay kasi ng pulis mas delikado ang trabaho ng pulis at sundalo. Anytime pwede ka mamatay so tama lang rin na bigyan ng recognition by way of increasing the salary ‘yun ang pagtingin namin,” he said on Friday.
Dela Rosa will get a 79-percent increase, bringing the salary of the PNP chief to at least P120,000 per month.
"Nagulat ako ngayon lumabas sa akin 79 percent ang increase so napakalaki na ng sweldo ko. Ako na ang pinakamayaman na pulis ngayon in terms of sweldo. Sa sweldo ako ang pinakamayaman na pulis sa Pilipinas kaya masaya po ako," he said.
Some 76,000 men with the rank of Police Officer (PO) 1 will receive a 100-percent salary increase this year. Other officers will initially get an average of 58.70-percent increase and the balance will be released the following year because of the lack of budget.
President Rodrigo Duterte signed on January 1 the Joint Resolution 1 which increases the salary of police, military and other uniformed personnel by 100 percent staring January.
Senator Franklin Drilon said the government should review the current salary structure of government employees including that of uniformed personnel.
“It is important that a review of the compensation package for the civilian personnel is undertaken in order to avoid wage distortion and inequality and make the salary of government professionals at par with their counterparts in the military and the police,” he said.
“Today a teacher 1 receives P21,000 while a policeman receives P40,000. Shouldn’t the teacher, shouldn’t the health worker, shouldn’t the entry-level lawyer in the Department of Justice be the same with everybody?” he added.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque Jr., however, said earlier that the President has given instructions for the granting of a salary increase to public school teachers. This will be financed by the proceeds from the impending second tax reform package that will be implemented by the government.
Drilon, for his part, suggested that the House of the Representatives adopt the Senate Resolution no. 575 which asks the Department of Budget and management to recompute and make adjustments in the base pay of the government employees below and above salary grade 11 to ensure that their compensation are proportional or equal to those in the PNP and the military.
He said the application of the Senate resolution is necessary to avoid the demoralization among civilian employees.
"The resolution would address the possible wage distortion by adjusting the Compensation and Position Classification System and Base Pay Schedule of civilian personnel,” Drilon said.
“The resolution will also eliminate overlaps among salary grade allocations of government personnel taking into consideration differences in duties, responsibilities, length of service, and other logical bases of differentiation of the positions,” he added. (Third Anne Peralta-Malonzo/SunStar Philippines)