President Rodrigo Duterte has thumbed down anew proposed legislation, believing its provisions would become burdensome to the government.
In his letter to the leaders of both chambers of the Congress, the President explained why he vetoed a bill that sought to “further strengthen” the Office of the Solicitor General, saying the provisions augmenting the agency’s employee benefits “may prove to be too onerous to the government.”
“Having examined the bill in such light, I am apprehensive that the provisions thereof granting benefits beyond the current compensation framework for other government offices may prove to be too onerous to the government,” Duterte wrote in his letter dated March 7.
However, a copy of which was only released to the media on Friday.
“The new benefits granted in addition to the benefits enjoyed by other government offices would erode the National Government’s thrust to standardize and rationalize the current compensation framework in the bureaucracy,” the President argued.
According to him, the proposed law would only create “too much disparity and equality” among the public servants in the Executive branch. Its passage would also undermine the principle of “equal pay for work of equal value.”
“While I support the strengthening of the Office of the Solicitor General and value the work of men and women in the OSG, as head of the Executive branch, I am duty-bound to consider the subject bill not just in terms of its possible favorable effects on the OSG and its personnel, but also its impact on the entire government bureaucracy,” Duterte said.
Senator Richard Gordon, who sponsored the measure, previously mentioned that the bill provided for bigger and competitive benefits for OSG officials to help recruit new lawyers.
Under the bill, retirement perks, privileges, and other benefits were supposed to be given to OSG members. This was the fourth time that the President used his veto power after scrutinizing proposed legislation.