Estrada has shepherded the passage of two landmark bills — one seeking to raise the disability benefits of military veterans, while the other introduces changes in the fixed term for military officials — within 10 months.
“I am humbled and honored by the significant progress we have made in the First Regular Session,” he said.
“We have worked tirelessly to fulfill our mandate as a public servant and bring about meaningful reforms that will benefit the Filipino people. It is truly gratifying to see our efforts bear fruit,” he added.
Estrada, chair of the Senate committee on national defense and security, stood as sponsor of these two vital measures at the Senate floor.
Senate Bill No. 1480 seeks to raise the military veterans’ disability pension while Senate Bill No. 1849 introduces amendments to a 2022 law that sets a fixed term for key military positions. President Marcos signed the latter measure into law last month.
“In passing two significant bills, one of which has been already signed into law and the other just waiting to be signed into law by the President, countless lives will be impacted in the days and years to come,” Estrada said.
On raising military veterans’ disability benefits, he said 4,386 veterans, 2,276 wives of pensioners, and 795 minors stand to benefit from the higher rates.
“Malaki ang agwat sa halaga ng nakukuha nila sa loob ng 29 na taon ang ipinagkaloob natin na dagdag sa kanilang buwanang pensyon. Nararapat lamang na ilagay natin sa pamantayan ang paglobo ng presyo ng mga bilihin sa nakalipas na tatlong dekada,” he said.
Of the 179 bills filed by Estrada since July 2022, the proposed National Defense Act and the Military and Uniformed Personnel Services (MUP) Separation, Retirement, and Pension Act. Both are included in the administration’s priority list.
Estrada, chair of the Senate committee on labor, also initiated proceedings on essential bills such as the proposed Caregivers Welfare Act, Enterprise Productivity Act, Reservist Employment Rights, and Apprenticeship Training Act.