The Philippine Senate has approved on third and final reading a bill that seeks to grant retirement benefits to barangay officials and workers.

The measure proposes retirement pay of P100,000 for qualified barangay chairmen, P80,000 for the members of the Sangguniang Barangay and P50,000 for the barangay treasurer, secretary, tanod (deputies), members of the Lupon ng Tagapamayapa (peace officers), Health and Day Care workers.

Also approved on final reading Monday was Senate Bill 2693, which allows barangay captains to administer the oath of office of any government official and employee, including the president.

“It is high time that we accord barangay leaders and workers the benefits the state is supposed to give those who serve in the frontlines of the as part of the government’s basic political unit,” Senate President Franklin Drilon said of the bill granting retirement benefits.

“The dynamic officials and conscientious workers who are behind the active operation of the affairs of our barangays are left with measly benefits,” Senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr., chairman of the Senate Committee on Local Government, said.

The measure also provides for the creation of a barangay retirement fund for the barangay officials and workers, to be “equivalent to one percent of the share of the national government under Section 284 of the Local Government Code of 1991, as amended.”

To qualify, a retiring barangay official must be at least 60 years old with a minimum of nine years in service at the time of retirement.

If an official or worker dies or becomes permanently incapacitated in the performance of duty, they shall be entitled to the benefits irrespective of age and number of years in service, according to the bill.