• ARMM settles unpaid remittances with GSIS

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    COTABATO CITY: Public School teachers in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) are looking forward to the Independence Day celebrations in the region as this will unload them the burden of not enjoying benefits from the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS).

    Jamar Kulayan, regional secretary of the Department of Education in ARMM (DepEd-ARMM), said a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) will be signed on that historic day between the DepEd-ARMM, ARMM regional government, Department of Budget and Management (DBM) that will settle the Php 3 billion unpaid remittances of teachers since 1997.

    Kulayan and ARMM Regional Governor Mujiv Hataman had negotiated with the GSIS how to address the problem of unpaid personal and government share remittances to the government insurance institution.

    Kulayan said under the MOA, DBM will look for funds to settle the Php 3 billion unpaid premiums of teachers to be paid to GSIS so that teacher-members can avail of GSIS benefits and other loan privileges.

    As part of its counterpart in the ARMM efforts to settle the problem, GSIS agreed to condone the interest of unpaid and unremitted premiums.

    Kulayan said Hataman has ordered a thorough investigation why the amount, now a whopping Php 3 billion, was not remitted to the GSIS since member premiums have been automatically deducted from teachers pay.

    Speaking to reporters, Kulayan said the amount reached Php 3 billion due to interest and penalties.

    Hataman, after assuming office as caretaker in 2011 and eventually elected as regional governor in 2013, had vowed to run after those responsible in the mess, saying the teachers have suffered so much.

    On orders of President Aquino to clean up the graft-ridden region, he succeeded in getting rid the DepEd with “ghost” teachers, pupils, employees, schools and buildings. PNA

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