• DBM releases additional P1.59B for backlog on veterans pension

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    The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) disbursed on Wednesday an additional P1.59 billion on top of the existing P7.9-billion pension fund released this year to benefit over 200,000 military veterans, for year-end months of October to December.

    In a statement, Budget Secretary Florencio “Butch” Abad said that the additional P1.59 billion will be sourced as usual from the Pension and Gratuity Fund, and will benefit the 206,154 certified veterans by the Philippine Veterans Affairs Office (PVAO).

    “Aside from the P7.94 billion we have released so far this year, this latest release supports the well-being of our military veterans and their families, ensuring that their pensions are well-provided for in the last quarter of the year,” he said.

    Abad added that the list of military veterans to receive pension—submitted by PVAO—was validated and compared against records of government banks and loan associations to identify and validate beneficiaries from the ghost and “doubtful” beneficiaries from the list.

    “Through our evaluation and validation process and the subsequent enrollment of all eligible pensioners to ATM accounts, we have successfully cleansed our beneficiary list of invalid, duplicate and ghost entries. In addition, the implementation of electronic payments in the delivery of pensions has ensured the timely and transparent release of benefits straight to our pensioners’ individual accounts,” Abad said.

    Earlier, the DBM also released P2.9 billion for unpaid pensions of 16,980 World War 2 veterans, covering years 1994 to 2012.
    Abad said that the fund was carried over to the Total Administrative Disability fund that would fund veterans’ pensions, as the current administration is pushing for proper pension provision for military veterans of the country.

    Kristyn Nika M. Lazo

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