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First Time in Budget: Congress Funds Unpaid Pension for Spouses of WWII Veterans

December 11, 2015

Senator Loren Legarda, Chairperson of the Senate Committee on Finance, today said that the unpaid disability pension for surviving spouses of World War II veterans will now be funded, for the very first time since the law on upgrading benefits for military veterans was enacted in 1994.

Under the proposed 2016 national budget, the amount of Php2.723 Billion has been allocated for the payment of total administrative disability (TAD) pension for surviving spouses of deceased World War II veterans.

“Our war veterans have served our country well and their spouses also suffered during the war. We need to give what is due to them. This pension is long overdue. The House of Representatives introduced this allocation and was fully supported by the Senate,” said Legarda.

The Senator explained that the unpaid pension was due to the 16-year gap between the enactment of Republic Act No. 7696 in 1994, which granted disability pension to WWII veterans, and the time when the government actually started paying in 2010.

“Between 1994 and 2010, many of our WWII veterans already died and were not able to receive the pension due to them. They died even before the government funded the law. This means that the government owes pension worth P1,700 a month for 16 years to the spouses of these deceased veterans, a total of 21,000 widows,” Legarda said.

Moreover, the 2016 national budget also includes funding worth Php1.811 Billion for partial payment of TAD for living post-WWII veterans who are at least 80 years of age as of 2016.

“It is a shame for a nation not to honor its valiant soldiers with adequate and timely compensation. This budget is only one way of showing our respect and gratitude for the service they have rendered for our country,” Legarda concluded.