Lawmaker wants justice for Justices

A PAMPANGA lawmaker today pushed for the immediate passage of his proposed measure increasing the retirement benefits of the members of the Judiciary.

Rep. Carmelo Lazatin (1st District, Pampanga) sought the approval of HB 1436, now under consideration by the House Committee on Justice, as he lamented that despite their crucial role in keeping the justice system fair to all and the professionalism they exercise, justices are not afforded appreciable security after retirement, after having made noble sacrifice and having devoted the best years of their lives to public service.

“The country’s justices are considered the vanguard and protector of our Constitution. The role they play in upholding justice and order in our society is indeed indispensable,” Lazatin stressed.

Lazatin noted that current retirement laws providing retirement benefits to members of the judiciary are not at par with the changing economic conditions of the country.

“The gratuity provided is not commensurate with the valuable service rendered by the Justices of the Supreme Court, Court of Appeals and other members of the Judiciary,” he added.

Section 5 of HB 1436 states that “All retired members of the Judiciary shall receive a pro-rated monthly retirement benefit during their remaining lifetime computed as follows including unclaimed salaries and benefits: Half of the total years of service rendered (including remaining months and days) x monthly salary and allowances.”

Likewise, members who died in active service who have rendered at least 15 years shall receive a ten-year lump sum retirement benefit computed as follows: 10 years x half of the total number of years of service rendered (including remaining months and days) x monthly salary and allowances.

Deceased members who have rendered less than 15 years shall receive a lump-sum retirement benefit computed as follows: Total number of years of service rendered (including remaining months and days) x monthly salary and allowances.

“It is about time that the State does its best to protect its protectors, so they can be assured of better living conditions after their retirement,” Lazatin said, adding that the increase in retirement benefits would help encourage current justices and judges to underline efficiency and dedication in the performance of their duties in upholding and ensuring justice for all.

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