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Zarate credits these three Cabinet members for swaying Duterte into approving SSS pension hike

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There’s what the militant solons call the “neo-liberal bloc” in President Rodrigo Duterte’s Cabinet, which they detest for blocking the proposed Social Security System (SSS) pension increase.

And then there are the “voices of reason” within the Cabinet, which they totally adore for doing the opposite.

Bayan Muna Party-list Rep. Carlos Zarate said the latter group is composed of Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Secretary Judy Taguiwalo, Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Secretary Rafael Mariano and National Anti-Poverty Commission (NAPC) head Liza Maza.

Zarate on Wednesday (January 11) credited the trio for persuading President Rodrigo Duterte to finally approve the SSS pension hike worth P1,000.

“Noong huling Cabinet meeting talagang pinaglaban nila ang dagdag P2,000 na pension despite the opposition of the so-called economic managers,” he said.

These managers are Department of Budget and Management (DBM) Secretary Benjamin Diokno, Department of Finance (DOF) Sec. Carlos Dominguez and National Economic and Dev’t Authority (NEDA) Director-General Ernesto Pernia. They’ve been dubbed as the neo-liberal bloc by Makabayan solons.

“Kami ay nagpapasalamat na pinakinggan sa huli ni Pangulong Digong Duterte ang reasonableness nung arguments ng tatlong secretaries at position ng mga pensioners na dapat nang ibigay yung dagdag P2,000 pension,” Zarate said.

Duterte approved the pension increase, albeit worth P1,000, on Tuesday.

It should be noted that Mariano and Maza are former militant lawmakers themselves.