MANILA (Mabuhay) – To prevent a brain drain of well-trained military pilots in the country, a House of Representatives leader is seeking a 30 percent increase in the basic salary of pilot-officers in the Philippine Air Force following a contract of service adjusted to a minimum of 10 years.
Rep. Winston Castelo (2nd Dist.-Quezon City), chairman of the House Committee on Metro Manila Development, said it is of highest national interest to keep the country’s military air force, the PAF, at par with any military organization in the country and with the thriving airline industry.
“The country cannot afford to lose its pilot-officers from PAF to private or commercial airlines since the government has spent considerably for their training. Besides, the acquisition of more aircraft for the PAF must come along with the retention of highly-qualified pilot-officers and the training of other pilots in the military service,” said Castelo.
He said his proposal under House Bill No. 2704 will put a stop to the brain drain phenomenon.
“It seeks to put a stop to this disturbing pattern or behavior of more and more pilot-officers leaving the military service in search of greener pastures or better opportunities which private or commercial airlines are in a better position to offer than the government,” said Castelo.
House Bill 2704, which has been referred to the House Committee on Appropriations chaired by Rep. Isidro Ungab (3rd Dist.-Davao City), provides that it is the declared policy of the State “to secure the sovereignty and the integrity of the national territory as these are essential to the enjoyment of the people of the blessings of democracy.”
The bill provides there shall be granted to pilot-officers of the PAF, following a contract of service adjusted to a minimum of 10 years, a 30 percent increase in their basic salary.
The amount to carry out the provisions of the proposed Act shall be provided for in the annual General Appropriations Act, while the Department of National Defense (DND) shall issue the rules and regulations to carry out the purpose of the proposed Act, the bill provides. (MNS)