Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Palace pressure on Senate to pass allowance bill is malicious, unfair

From the Office of Anakpawis Representative Crispin B. Beltran **

Reference*: Rep. Crispin Beltran

Lisa C. Ito, Public Information Officer (+63)927.796.7006

*Tel*. *# (+632) *931-6615 *Email*:


February 15, 2006

*Rep. Beltran: Palace pressure on Senate to pass allowance bill is
malicious, unfair*

*GMA's five-year wage freeze is real cause of delay in take-home pay hikes
for govt' workers *

Anakpawis Rep. Crispin Beltran today criticized Pres. Arroyo for "putting
malicious and unfair pressure on the Senate to immediately pass her
'Valentines Day' bill for government workers' allowance", saying that it was
a "Palace ploy to earn *pogi* points while distracting Senate solons from
ongoing probes on pressing anomalies involving the Arroyo administration".

"Pres. Arroyo has previously accused the Senate of foot-dragging on the
P13.1 billion supplemental budget, trying to pit government workers against
Senators critical of the Arroyo administration. She is desperately trying to
score *pogi points* at the expense of making the Senate look bad," Beltran

"In fairness to the Senate, they have already conducted hearings on the
issue of government workers' calls for a wage hike. And their refusal to
uncritically pass the Palace-sponsored supplemental budget is reasonable in
the light that there are too many unanswered questions about its passage,
such as the National Treasury's failure to certify if public funds are
indeed available for the allowance," he noted.

"It is unfortunate that the supplemental budget was already railroaded in
the Lower House. Now, GMA wants to ram this through the Senate as well," he

"The Palace's call for an allowance is an insincere gesture towards our
government workers. We have voted 'yes' to the supplemental budget because
we can not deny our government workers any measure―however small and
insignificant―that can raise their take-home pay. But take note that the
primary clamor of our government workers for over half a decade is for a
P3,000 salary hike, and not a P1,000 allowance. GMA insincerely flaunts her
initiative for the latter while ignoring and denying the former," Beltran

"The Palace is being unfair in this hasty pressure, when in fact, it is
Pres. Arroyo herself who has delayed and refused to heed the call for a
P3,000 across-the-board salary hike for government workers for five long
years. Instead of finally certifying existing legislation calling for a
significant wage hike, GMA flaunts her last-ditch decision to give an
insignificant allowance," he said.

"If there is any one who should be blamed for the delay in
poverty-alleviation measures for our workers in the public or even private
sectors, it is Pres. Arroyo. She is the one who has denied our government
employees the real Valentines' gift of a P3,000 across-the-board wage hike,
for five long years," he said. ###


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