A DAVAO City councilor is pushing to increase the annual social pension to senior citizens from P1,500 to P2,000.

Second District Councilor Ralph Abella, one of the ordinance proponents, said in a radio interview on Monday, December 6, that the annual pension will cover those aged 65 and above.

Abella said he will lobby the increase to the upcoming mayor.

"Ato ihangyo ang umaabot nga bag-ong mayor nga himuon siyang P2,000 kay dako naman ta og income sa syudad sa Davao (I will be appealing to the incoming mayor to increase the pension to P2,000 since our revenue had increased in Davao City)," the councilor said in an interview on 87.5 FM Davao City Disaster Radio.

He cited the implementation of the Supreme Court Mandanas ruling expanding the local governments’ share in national taxes next year.

As of now, the city is only giving out P1,500 financial assistance, in accordance with the City Ordinance 01Q05-19, Series of 2019.

The ordinance aims to support senior citizens’ medicines and other expenses relative to their health and mandates the grant of an annual minimum financial assistance of P1,500.

The cash aid is distributed every November and December every year.

The ordinance, which was passed on November 12, 2019, said the pension should be distributed starting in the second week of November 2020. Due to the unforeseen circumstances brought about by the pandemic, the implementation was delayed.

With a total budget of P132,976,500, to be distributed to 88,651 senior citizens ages and above, it will be sourced from the Supplemental Budget (SB) 3.

Al-ag previously announced that the Davao City Government is planning to give an annual pension of P3,000 yearly to qualified senior citizens in the city as a counterpart to the Department of Social Welfare and Development's yearly pension of P6,000.

During the Council regular session, City Budget Officer Ermelinda Furog-Gallego said Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio is only willing to provide P1,500 annually to senior citizens.

Councilor Wilberto Al-ag, also the ordinance author, said they will be pushing to increase the annual cash assistance back to the proposed amount in the coming years depending on the earnings of the city from its real property tax.