A day before the celebration of the Negros Island Liberation yesterday, some beneficiaries of the World War 2 veterans in Negros Occidental slammed the Philippine Veterans Affairs Office for not releasing their pensions and other benefits.
In a press conference at the Negros Press Club Saturday, the veterans said many of them have already sold their properties so they could go to Metro Manila and process the release of their pensions at the PVAO main office in Camp General Emilio Aguinaldo, to no avail.
One of them is Elena Quijano Sindol, 48, of Hacienda Felicia Dos, Brgy. 8 Victorias City, who said her mother Dolores Flores Quijano has been processing the pension of her late father, Gerardo Quijano, since the 1990’s.
Sindol said her mother died in March 2010 and she became the official beneficiary but her claims amounting to P700,045 were not released by the PVAO even if it had already been approved on April 14, 2010 yet.
Lanie Bilbao Demegilio, 47, of Hacienda San Ramon, Brgy. Luna, Cadiz City, said they have been processing the release of the pension of her father, Salvador Bilbao, P700,000 since his demise in 1990, but until her mother, Alvina Bilbao, passed away in 2008, it had not been given to them by PVAO.
Elsie Figueroa Bayles, 63, of Brgy. Canroma, Pontevedra town, also appealed to PVAO to give them the pension of her father worth P260,000 as they needed it for the medication of her mother, whose name she did not disclose, who is now confined in a hospital in Bacolod for a kidney disease.
Meanwhile, PVAO Acting Finance Division chief, Fernando Palor explained that the reason for the delay of the release of her pension, in a letter he sent to Rosalinda Eguid Palermo, a veteran beneficiary from Brgy. Antipolo, Pontevedra on April 10, this year.
In his letter, a copy of which was furnished to the media by Palermo’s daughter Rosalinda Palermo Saturday, Palor said Palermos’ claims have already been processed but the payments cannot be released due to budgetary constraints.
He added that no amount for payment of the pensions has been provided under the General Appropriation Act of 2012. But he assured Palermo that once funds have been appropriated for the purpose, they will immediately pay her.
However, Palermo was not able to read Palor’s letter anymore as she passed away in October last year, her daughter said.*APN