Press Release
August 9, 2010

Drilon files resolution calling for Senate probe
on excessive salaries of gov't officials

Reacting to reports of excessive and unwarranted salaries and other perks received by certain top government officials, Senator Franklin Drilonl last Thursday filed a resolution directing the committees on Finance, together with the Committee on Government Corporations and Public Enterprises, to conduct an investigation into the matter.

"Reports of excessive and unwarranted monetary remuneration and perks accruing to the benefit of board directors and top officials of government owned and controlled corporations (GOCCs) and government financial institutions (GFIs), in the guise of allowances, per diem, honoraria, and bonuses, is like rubbing salt to an already open wound," Drilon laments.

"As public officers, we are all accountable to the people," explained the senator, while asking, "how can we expect people to trust us when they see that top government officials are given bonuses left and right, yet we cannot even grant them (the people), their clamour for higher wages?"

Drilon was referring to President Noynoy Aquino's state of the nation address wherein the President mentioned the case of MWSS, whose board of directors reportedly received millions on top of their regular salaries, in the guise of allowances, bonuses and other benefits.

"In these difficult times when workers both in public and private sectors are clamouring for more decent pay, such reports of excessive and unwarranted benefits and privileges being enjoyed by top officials and board directors of GOCCs and GFIs only exacerbate the level of discontent on the part of our poor countrymen," Drilon said.

"These alleged excesses in the use of public funds have to stop," Drilon said, adding that "this seemingly anomalous situation has been going on for too long, primarily because of the powers vested in the boards of these institutions to determine and fix their own compensation and benefits."

"The Aquino administration vowed to eradicate corruption in government, and it is my duty to help the President achieve this by ensuring that transparency and good governance will be in effect from this moment forward, Drilon added."

"As the chairman of the committee on Finance, I am recommending for the Senate to come up with the appropriate legislative measures to rationalize, and standardize, to a reasonable level, the compensation package of the top officials and board directors of GOCCs and GFIs, with the end in sight of promoting public trust, and protecting much needed public funds."

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