Gordon bats for ‘survivorship benefits’ to deceased prosecutors’ families

Gordon bats for ‘survivorship benefits’ to deceased prosecutors’ families

By Ernie Reyes

MANILA — Senator Richard J. Gordon pushed for the immediate passage
into law of a measure granting benefits to the surviving legitimate
spouse and dependent children of deceased retired members of the
National Prosecution Service (NPS).

Gordon, who chairs the Senate committee on justice and human rights,
sponsored Senate Bill 2373, contained in Committee Report 296,
recognizes the sacrifices made by the prosecutors who play a very
important role in the country’s criminal justice system by risking
their personal safety and that of their families.

“Araw-araw po, mayroon tayong prosecuting officers na kung minsan,
tinatakot, bina-bribe. Dapat ipakita natin na tayo ay nasa likod nila.
Ang sistema ng katarungan natin ay dapat maipagtanggol at maalagaan
natin lahat, hindi lang ang mga huwes, kundi maging ang prosecution
officials,” he said.

        According to human rights groups, at least 110 lawyers,

judges, and prosecutors have been killed in the country from 1977 to
2021, more than half of which have occurred under the present
administration.

At present, the government provides survivorship benefits to officials
and employees of the Office of the Ombudsman, members of the
Judiciary, and other government officials.

The retirement benefits given to prosecutors are essentially similar
to the retirement assistances of the Judiciary, except for the
survivorship benefits.

        Under the measure, the surviving legitimate spouse and

dependent children of deceased member of the NPS shall be entitled to
receive all the retirement benefits that the deceased prosecutor was
receiving or entitled to receive.

Gordon, a lawyer by profession, pointed out that prosecutors should
also be granted the same benefits.

“The benefit shall be such as to grant, in respect of the contingency
in services, such as unexpected deaths in view of the risks and hazards
of the profession, a continuation of the payment of pension of the
prosecutors to the surviving spouse and/or qualified dependent
children,” he said.

“With the passage of the bill, the State will be able to take care of
the dependents of the NPS prosecutors,” he added.

SBN 2373 is a consolidated measure of bills introduced by Sen. Juan
Edgardo Angara, with Senators Emmanuel Pacquiao, Christopher Lawrence
Go, Maria Lourdes Nancy S. Binay, and Sherwin Gatchalian as
co-authors. (ai/mtvn)

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