General Santos City

5,000 General Santos teachers still waiting for 2020 bonuses from city hall

Rommel Rebollido
5,000 General Santos teachers still waiting for 2020 bonuses from city hall

FILE PHOTO: Public school teacher Nestor Reyes starts the first day of classes with his students from the Jose Abad Santos High School with a short orientation as he address them from a small studio set up inside his home in Binondo, Manila on September 13, 2021. Rappler

Rappler photo

After 10 months, the city government’s accountant sends the appropriation ordinance back to the city council for corrections

Public school teachers were promised a P2,500-bonus each by the city government in December last year, but they have yet to receive a centavo of it with 2022 just around the corner.

Councilor Franklin Gacal on Thursday, October 28, questioned the delay in the release of over P13 million which city hall set aside last year for 5,374 public school teachers in General Santos.

City schools division superintendent Romelito Flores said city hall has long been giving General Santos’ public school teachers year-end bonuses to boost their morale.

Gacal said it took 10 months before the appropriation ordinance, approved by the city council in December, could be sent to the Office of the City Accountant.

The ordinance, signed by Mayor Ronnel Rivera in the same month, greenlit the release of some P13 million to add to the year-end bonuses of the teachers last year.

But the thousands of public school teachers in the city may need to wait a little longer because the city government’s accountant sent the ordinance back to the city council on Thursday for corrections.

Gacal said the 10-month delay could have been avoided if only the documents reached the city accountant on time.

“Ang pait ani, kay gahapong lang nakita sa mga opisyales nga adunay sipyat sa dokumento. So, kinahanglang ibalik na pud for correction,” Gacal said.

(The problem is that officials only saw the error in the document yesterday. So, they had to send it back for correction.)

He said the ordinance was found to be defective because the source of appropriation was the mayor’s office’s budget for “other personnel services” rather than the fund intended for subsidy for national agencies.

City budget officer John Philip Quimosing said he was surprised to find out that the teachers have not yet received their 2020 bonuses from city hall. 

“Matagal nang dumaan sa amin ang documents niyan,” Quimosing said (The documents were processed by our office a long time ago.) –Rappler.com

Rommel Rebollido is a Mindanao-based journalist and an awardee of the Aries Rufo Journalism Fellowship