June 21, 2024

The Commission on Elections is eyeing to give additional honoraria to electoral board (EB) members who rendered overtime work during the May 9 elections due to faulty vote counting machines (VCMs).

Comelec acting spokesperson John Rex Laudiangco said they are waiting for the resolution and final approval of the proposal, which should go through the Commission en banc, for teachers and staff appointed by the Department of Education to EBs.

EBs are composed of a chairperson, a poll clerk, and a third staff.

“As to the numbers, it will be based on the reported issue or officially reported EBs who encountered issues. We will also include the DepEd supervising officer and the support staff,” Laudiangco said on May 13.

He said DepEd supervisor officials (DESO) and the support staff did not leave the EBs and polling precincts when problems occurred.

The additional honoraria, he said, are taxable under the law.

The Comelec resolution on additional honoraria stated 1,800 VCMs and SD (Secure Digital) cards encountered problems, affecting 1,867 polling precincts.

“We must ensure the teachers and support staff, whose sacrifices during Election Day are unparalleled, are fairly compensated for the work done,” read the memorandum addressed to the en banc. “The teachers’ loss of time to rest and be with their families, as well as their loss of opportunity to find other sources of income, must be considered.”

The amount for additional honoraria will be discussed once the proposal is approved.

The regular honoraria are P7,000 for the EB chairperson; P6,000 for EB members; P5,000 for DESO; and P3,000 for support staff and medical personnel.

The chairpersons and members of the EB, DESO, and their respective support staff shall also be entitled to a travel allowance of P2,000 each.

The DESO and their staff will likewise receive a communication allowance of P1,500 each.

A P500 anti-Covid-19 allowance will be given to the EB, DESO, and their respective support staff, medical personnel, and other support staff.

The allowance and the honoraria shall be paid within 15 days from the date of elections. – PNA