MANILA (PNA) — Malacanang on Sunday assured that the P10-billion compensation fund for victims of Martial Law is still intact.
Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte in an interview on state run dzRB Radyo ng Bayan raised the issue a day before application for Martial Law Victims for compensation official starts.
“Yes, it (compensation) is intact. In fact, what I know is that it is in the Bureau of Treasury and that amount has long been intact,” Valte said.
Valte said that it is the national treasury handling the funds.
When asked if Malacanang remained confident that Human Rights Victims’ Claims Board head and former police general Lina Sarmiento can complete the processing of claims within two years, Valte said yes.
“We have high hopes that Mrs. Sarmiento can address the mandate given by the President and the mandate under the law,” the spokesperson said.
It can be recalled that controversy arose following the appointment of Sarmiento as some critics including incumbent party-list lawmakers has asked the Supreme Court to invalidate Sarmiento’s appointment.
Some critics said that it was an insult appointing a police officer to head the Human Rights Victims’ Claims Board while others said that she did not have enough understanding on human rights abuses itself.
President Benigno S. Aquino III, however, defended Sarmiento, saying that he believed she had the “essential skill” necessary to do the job.
“Like the President said, let us give her a chance because she was able to prove her competence in her previous post,” Valte said.
“We really hope that they (the board) will be able to complete the process within two years,” she added. (PNA) CTB/ANP