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Duterte on teachers’ pay hike: ‘It’s coming this year’

By: Julianne Suarez, Neil Arwin Mercado - Team Inquirer | October 07,2019 - 10:43 AM

MANILA, Philippines — The pay increase for teachers will come within the year, President Rodrigo Duterte said on Sunday in a press conference held shortly after his arrival in Davao City from his official visit to Russia.

He had been asked if he would also increase the pay for teachers following the doubling of the salary of soldiers and police officers.

“It’s coming, their increase. But not double,” he said, speaking partly in Filipino. “There are more teachers, my God. But it’s there. It’s coming this year.”

He hinted that the pay hike could at least reach 35%.

He did not, however, give a specific timeline for the granting of the salary increase.

“You know, the government is such a very complex animal. And you cannot just… If I give you the timeline, then I could not make it on the deadline, I will have to explain more than what is expected of government,” he said.

“It’s better once it is there. Then I can say it’s there. What I’m saying now is it’s coming. I said they will also have an increase. That I’m very sure of,” he added.

Earlier, the Senate honored the hard work and commitment of teachers in celebration of World Teachers’ Day, which was on Saturday, as senators vowed to work hard to institutionalize the pay increase of basic education teachers in the 18th Congress.

Davao City teachers clamor for pay hike

In Davao City, the Alliance of Concerned Teachers was counting on city officials to bring their clamor for a salary hike to the national government.

“We are hoping that [the city government] has the compassion to augment [the salaries of teachers] or even bring our voice to the national [government] so that teachers here in Davao will have a salary increase that will allow them to live decent lives,” Reynaldo Pardillo, ACT Davao City president, said.

The group also called on the administration to prioritize the budget for social services, including a substantial salary increase for government employees at the forefront of providing services to the people.

“Public school teachers and other government employees have been calling for a long time for a substantial increase in their salaries,” said ACT Teachers Rep. France Castro. “The government [has been] so quick to call them ‘too ambitious,’ even to the extent of calling those who join rallies on the streets fighting this basic right as terrorists.”

ACT Teachers is pushing for the P30,000 entry-level salary for teachers.

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