Despite the ongoing gridlock between the Senate and House, the House leader remains hopeful that Congress will have the measure passed in last three session days before the election campaign season starts.

“I’m sure both the highest leaders of the two houses of Congress will be talking to each other on how to break the impasse para naman before we adjourn, baka mayroon kaming ma-ratify na reconciled version of the SSL IV,” he said.

The House leader appealed to his Senate counterparts to consider the welfare of civilian employees first and agree to index the pension of retired uniformed personnel for the time being.

"Let's consider first the greater number of our civilian employees.'Yung 1.5 million government employees, 'yun muna ang pag-usapan natin," he said.

In case the House and Senate fail to ratify the measure this week, Gonzales said the two chambers could tackle it when sessions resume on May 23. However, he said he is uncertain as to whether the bill's applicability will be retroactive if it is passed much later.

"Hindi nangangahulugan na kapag may deadlock kami, patay na [ang SSL IV]," Gonzales said. – VS, GMA News


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