By Mario Casayuran
Boxing icon Senator Emmanuel D. Pacquiao sought on Monday an increase in the hazard pay of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) personnel in conflict areas, including civilian doctors and nurses.
Pacquiao’s Senate Bill 970 sought to increase the current P540 monthly hazard pay of AFP personnel in conflict areas to as much as P20,000.
Also covered in the bill are civilian doctors and nurses under the AFP Memorial Medical Center (AFPMMC) and those who provide aid and medical assistance to the military in the field.
Under the bill, the hazard pay for doctors and nurses would be adjusted to P10,000 monthly.
Pacquiao, in introducing the bill just months after the base pay increase of the military and other uniformed personnel became effective this year, noted that the hazard pay of military and uniformed personnel remained fixed at P540.
“Personnel of AFP are the country’s frontlines in dealing with apprehensions in the borders and tensions with terrorist and extremist groups. The AFP defends our country despite the exposure to danger and possibly risking their lives,” he said.
“It’s only appropriate to compensate those who risk their lives to serve and protect our country,” he added.
Funds for the implementation of the measure shall be included in the yearly General Appropriations Act (GAA or national budget), the bill said.
The second tranche of the increase in the base pay of military and uniformed personnel was implemented retroactive only last January 1, reports said.