• President Duterte said salary increase for the AFP and PNP will be felt within the year
  • The President’s announcement contradicted the DBM’s statement that the pay hike is not possible this year
  • Duterte said the increase will be done gradually because of insufficiency of funds

President Rodrigo Duterte made an assurance that the salary increase he promised to the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) will be felt within this year.

“I’d like to tell you that we will go ahead with the salary increases of the soldiers of the police and the military. This will take effect this year,” the President said during his visit to the AFP’s Western Mindanao Command Headquarters in Zamboanga City on Thursday, July 21.

The President’s statement is contrary to what the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) stated last July 14 that the government would not be able to fulfill President Duterte’s commitment to double the basic salary of state forces in his first year in office.

As mentioned in an Inquirer article, Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno said the salary increase is not possible because the budget for it is not included in the proposed P3.35 trillion proposed national budget for 2017.

“There’s none. It’s not included,” the budget secretary admitted.

President Duterte also pledged to raise the salaries of the National Bureau of Investigation and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency.

The Chief Executive explained that the salary increases will be done gradually because of insufficiency of funds.

“Let’s do things slowly because we don’t have enough funds. Remember that I entered the presidency mid-stream so I have to just make a go of what’s available but I will prioritize you,” Duterte said.

“I want to assure everybody in this Republic, especially those in the government, that you have a President who will share with you the problems, and of course, the blessing that we get from God and from the people of the Republic of the Philippines,” he added.