HONG KONG — Indignation over President Benigno Aquino III's veto of the bill granting a P2,000 increase in the pension of Social Security System (SSS) retirees has reached Filipino migrant workers here.
On Wednesday, OFWs picketed the Philippine Consulate General to protest the veto.
Some 20 members of Bayan Hong Kong & Macau slammed Aquino over his alleged insensitivity to the plight of senior citizens who "spent most of their productive life contributing to the economy."
In a short program at the PCG, Eman Villanueva, Bayan Hong Kong & Macau chairman, blasted the high salaries and bonuses received by SSS officials.
"Ang presidente ng SSS may P4.7 million salary, P2.8 million in allowance and P1 million in bonus," Villanueva said. "Sabi dati ni PNoy ang bonus nila ay moral tapos ngayon malalaman natin na 38 percent lang ang koleksyon."
"Pinag-aaway pa nila ang pensioners at ang mga SSS members ngayon. Ibig bang sabihin ang P2,000 na pension hike sa kanilang mga magulang ay ikasasama ng loob ng kanilang mga anak na nagbabayad ng SSS contribution ngayon?" he added.
In thumbing down the bill, Aquino said he cannot support it in its present form because of its "dire financial consequences," adding the stability of the entire SSS benefit system will be "seriously compromised" in favor of two million pensioners and their dependents.
Aquino also said the adjustment will result in substantial negative income for the SSS.
Villanueva, meanwhile, urged the Filipino community in Hong Kong to support the override of the veto. —KBK, GMA News