By Javier J Ismael/Manila Times
Senate President Vicente Sotto 3rd has filed a measure that seeks to upgrade the salaries of employees of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) and to reorganise the poll body’s offices.
Sotto filed Senate Bill 2082 to address the disparity in the salaries of Comelec employees with those in other government agencies.
“It is about time that Congress responds to their call for adequate adjustments in their remuneration,” the Senate leader said in the explanatory note of his bill titled, “An Act Reorganising the Comelec Offices.”
Members of the Comelec Employees’ Union had for decades asserted their right to substantial and just salary increases.
“Equal pay for equal work in government service is the ultimate goal of the proposed legislation. It can only be realised through reclassification and upgrading of their current plantilla positions, particularly in the Comelec main and field offices. Furthermore, it is posited that an increase in their salary will be an effective deterrent to graft and corrupt practices,” Sotto said.
The bill, if approved, would benefit 5,000 employees of the commission nationwide. A counterpart measure has been introduced in the House of Representatives by Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and Representatives Gary Alejano, Francisco Datol and Feliciano Belmonte Jr. The Senate bill also seeks to institute regional and provincial offices and divide the National Capital Region (NCR) into five administrative districts.
“The Comelec may delegate its powers and functions or order the implementation or enforcement of its orders, rulings or decisions through the heads of its field offices,” Sotto said.
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