Workers slam government’s Compressed Workweek plan

DAVAO CITY – Workers led by militant labor center Kilusang Mayo Uno in Southern Mindanao held a protest today at the Department of Labor and Employment to oppose the plan of the government to implement a compressed workweek.

Last August 24, 2017 the House of Representatives hastily approved the House Bill 6152 (Compressed Work Week Scheme Bill) that aims to amend the present 8-hours normal work into 12-hours and not to exceed 48-hours of work per week. Under the said bill, the overtime work will start after the worker works 12 hours during the day or after rendering 48 hours during the week. The Senate version of the Bill is Senate Bill 1571, which was sponsored by Sen. Joel Villanueva.

The workers lambasted the proposed law as it will only add workload, diminish income, is hazardous, and is an outright attack on the right to unionize and collective bargaining.

Under the Compressed Work Week Scheme (4-day Workweek, 12 hours daily work), the number of working days per year of the workers will be reduced to 294 from the present 313. This translates to P35,360.00 salary-lost per year for the worker in Davao Region. A daily 4-hour overtime work for 294 days will not be compensated amounting to a loss equivalent to P44,408.32 per year of uncompensated Overtime Work. Further, due to the reduced number of actual days worked in the entire year, the 13th month pay of the workers will also be reduced by P 2,946.33 per year. The total income lost by every worker per year in Davao Region will be P 82,714.65/yr or P 325.45/day if the proposed bill passes into law.

The new work scheme also poses health risk for the workers. Numerous studies have already been conducted in other countries which implement 12-hours work in different companies. According to the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine of American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, the risk of having an industrial accident is raised by 37% for workers working more than 12 hours a day. Working more than 60 hours per week relates to additional 23% accident risk. As the work schedules increase, the risks grow accordingly.

Based on another study from Ohio State University, women suffer more from long exposure of work. Women who work an average of 60 hours or more had triple risk of diabetes, heart trouble, cancer, and arthritis. According also to occupational psychologists, people do not function as effectively when they are tired or stressed.

If implemented, the workers will now have lesser time to communicate with their co-workers that affects their time for social purposes including unionizing and collective bargaining especially as contractualization persists.

Compressed Work Week is nothing but dictates of the profit-greedy capitalists under the pretext of neoliberalism. The new work scheme is just one of the flurry of anti-worker measures that the Duterte government has offered. Already, the proposed Tax Reform and PUV Modernization program are measures feared to decimate workers’ jobs and rights. #

Advertisements
Posted in campaigns, KMU-SMR in the NEWS, press release, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

ComVal Banana Workers Protest Chemical Poisoning

DAVAO CITY – Workers of foreign-owned banana exporters Sumifru and Musahamat Farms protested today at the offices of both companies for chemical poisoning suffered by its workers in their respective banana packing plants in Compostela and Pantukan, Compostela Valley.

Image may contain: 7 people, people standing, crowd and outdoorThe workers claim that the chemical fluozinam with brand name Omega being applied in the crowns (“pungango”) of bananas to prevent early ripening was responsible for the series of poisoning in the workplace. The workers in the packing plants complain of dizziness, nausea, dry throat, blurred vision and stomach ache when exposed. Several workers have been hospitalized as a result of exposure to Omega.

The Omega chemical was categorized as blacklisted by Greenpeace in Germany, an independent global environmental organization, for containing hazardous properties.

Omega was first used by Sumifru in 2016. The packing plant workers of Sumifru in Compostela complained to the company of the strong odor of the chemicals and its effects on their bodies. However, the company did not stop using the chemical but only improved the packing plants’ ventilation system. Due to this neglect, last August 24, five (5) workers were hospitalized after fainting at work. One worker was placed in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) due to severe dizziness.

In Pantukan, similar experiences were aired by the packing plant workers of Musahamat Farms, Inc. who were exposed to the same chemical. The workers bared that the company utilized the said chemical in 2013 but was stopped after the workers complained of its effects. However, this year, the company used it back that resulted to massive complains.
Herminia Lee Furro, 48 years old, who has worked for Musahamat for 10 years, bared that this month she experienced headache, spasm, sore eyes, skin itchiness, joint pains, and heart enlargement due to inhalation of the chemical fume.

Another packing plant worker, Pebirencia Mira, 45 years old, suffered premature labor last January 2017 which her doctor attributed to chemical exposure. Another worse scenario recorded was that of Melodine Desmopan Genabe who suffered a miscarriage on 2013 which the doctor also found to be a result of chemical poisoning.

Arlene Mantilla Paller lost her voice for the last two weeks due to exposure of Omega. She also suffered body pains, fever and headaches.

The protesting workers called on their companies to immediately ban the use of the hazardous Omega chemical.
They likewise demanded for reparation for health risks and loss of income as a result of exposure. Lastly, they called on the Department of Labor and Employment to issue a work stoppage order of the companies due to the health hazard in the workplace.#

Posted in press release | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Strike against jeepney phaseout a success, paralyzes 90% of public transportation in Davao

DAVAO CITY – Transport group Transport Solidarity in Southern Mindanao for Independence and Nationalism (TRANSMISION) an affiliate of Pagkakaisa ng mga Samahan ng Tsuper at Opereytor Nationwide or PISTON and labor group Kilusang Mayo Uno-Southern Mindanao jointly declared the transport strike a resounding success, claiming 90% paralyzation of public transportation in Davao City. Similar transport strikes launched in Panabo City and Tagum, Davao del Norte by jeepney and tricycle drivers were also declared a success, paralyzing 70% of public transportation.

Image may contain: outdoorThe October 16 nationwide transport strike, which began at 4:00 in the morning here in Davao City, was formally declared successful in a press conference called around 4:00 in the afternoon. However, the fight is not over yet, as far as the organizers and participating groups are concerned.

According to Ricardo Baron, spokesperson of TRANSMISION-PISTON, the success of the strike even bolsters the need to conduct more mass actions and strikes in the future.

The transport leader saluted and congratulated all the drivers, operators and commuters who supported the strike, despite the national administration’s counter-mobilization efforts suspending work and classes on all levels and public offices and demonizing the groups involved.

Image may contain: outdoor“We know that the work and class suspensions, even the malicious tagging of the strike as “destabilization attempts” were aimed at deterring the strike but it proved to be an act of futility. In the end, even in Duterte’s home city, not even a national holiday can contain the people’s growing rage against the jeepney phaseout which will be the death of the livelihood of hundreds of thousands of drivers. The Duterte administration must listen.”, Baron added.

The transport leader said that drivers and operators in the Southern Mindanao Region overwhelmingly oppose the PUV Modernization Program and the Department Order 2017-11 or Omnibus Guidelines on the Planning and Identification of Public Road Transportation and Franchise Insurance.

In Davao City, the group is likewise opposing the implementation of the High Priority Bus System (HPBS) which will replace the jeepneys plying the city’s thoroughfares as pushed by Mayor Sara Duterte..

The groups said that the HPBS is a double whammy to the drivers and operators because aside from the phasing-out of their present jeepney units through the HPBS, jeepneys in the city will be relegated to the routes in interior barangays and will no longer be allowed the ply the main roads and thoroughfares in the city.

Kilusang Mayo Uno – SMR also called on workers and commuters in the region to resist the corporatization and monopolization of the transportation industry.

Carl Antholy Olalo, secretary general of KMU-SMR, encouraged the commuting public to study further the real intentions behind the modernization program, saying that the promises of the modernization program are nothing but lies.

“The PUV Modernization Program of President Duterte and the High Priority Bus System of Mayor Inday Sara Duterte, are presented as modernization projects which will have trickle-down benefits to commuters but are really pro-capitalist projects which will benefit industry giants Toyota, Mitsubishi, Chrysler, General Motors and other foreign companies. The rich will get richer while our drivers and operators will be out of jobs,” the labor leader added.

“Participating in the strikes is an opportunity for us to show social solidarity with workers in public transportation. We would also like to register to the public that future transport strikes will be conducted again by the drivers and operators to oppose the City Government/Mayor Inday Sara’s plan to implement the HPBS and we seek the public’s consideration and support,” said Olalo.
For Reference:

Ricardo Baron
Spokesperson, TRANSMISION-PISTON
09102930788
Carl Anthony Olalo
Secretary-General, Kilusang Mayo Uno-Southern Mindanao
09123861000

Posted in press release, Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Picket Protest at the Corporate Headquarters of Musahamat Farms International

Image may contain: 2 people, people standing, crowd and outdoor

EARLIER: As the workers declare a strike at Musahamat Farm 2 in Pantukan, Kilusang Mayo Uno – KMU Southern Mindanao launches a picket protest at the Corporate Headquarters of Arab-owned Musahamat Farms International at Pryce Tower, Bajada.

The workers’ strike was waged due to union busting as the company fired several union officers without basis.

Support the Strike of Musahamat Farm 2 Workers!
Stop Union Busting!
Respect the Rights of Workers and Unionists!

Posted in strike | Leave a comment

Illegal dismissals push workers’ strike at Korean-owned banana exporter

Image may contain: one or more people and outdoor

DAVAO CITY – Mass dismissals of workers have pushed workers to launch a strike against Korean-owned Shin Sun Tropical Fruit Corp. in Brgy. San Miguel, Compostela, Compostela Valley.

On March 16, fifty-three (53) workers organized under the union Shin Sun Workers Union – National Federation of Labor Unions – Kilusang Mayo Uno (SSWU-NAFLU-KMU) were retrenched by Shin Sun, majority of whom had been working for the company for two to seven years. In the banana industry where capitalists employ several labor agencies to supply labor requirements, the practice is also insidiously used in order to skirt the law on regularization.

In the case of Shin Sun, the company contracted ECQ Serve Human Resources, a labor agency later declared by the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) to be engaged in the prohibited Labor-only Contracting (LOC).

Under the Labor Code, if a company hires a labor-only contractor, the company (principal) will be considered the employer of the employees of the contractor. In this case, workers hired under ECQ should have been declared employees of Shin Sun. However, instead of regularizing the workers, the company retrenched 53 of them and hired another labor agency, Human Pros Manpower Agency, to recruit new workers.

Kilusang Mayo Uno Southern Mindanao blasted Shin Sun for the illegal dismissals and called the attention of the DOLE under the leadership of Sec. Silvestre Bello III to investigate Shin Sun’s illegal acts.

According to Carl Anthony Olalo, secretary general of KMU Southern Mindanao, the Shin Sun workers’ strike is the first strike launched in the region following the release of the much-hyped Department Order 174 which promised to end labor only contracting.

“This is a test case for the Duterte administration to bare its resolve in ending contractualization through strong intervention. The DOLE itself has declared the previous contractor as LOC and hence all workers employed under it should have been declared as employees of Shin Sun, not dismissed summarily, as what this Korean company has done,” said Olalo.

KMU is calling for the immediate reinstatement and regularization of the retrenched workers. The group also demanded the repeal of Articles 106 to 109 of the Labor Code and reiterated that this is the only way to get rid of contractualization.###

Reference:
Carl Anthony Olalo, secretary general, KMU Southern Mindanao, 09123861000

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Workers Call on Lawmakers to Repeal provisions of Labor Code

23 February 2017

PRESS RELEASE

Workers call on lawmakers to repeal provisions of Labor Code

DAVAO CITY – Labor group Kilusang Mayo Uno Southern Mindanao pressed Congress to repeal provisions of the Labor Code in order to do away with contractualization for good.

In a picket protest outside of the University of Southeastern Philippines (USeP) where the House of Representatives Committee on Labor and Employment is conducting a hearing on labor issues in the region, workers called on legislators and the Department of Labor and Employment to work for the repeal of Articles 106-109 of Presidential Decree No. 442 or the Labor Code which accommodates the practice of contracting out jobs. Articles 106 to 109 of the Labor Code are provisions which allow subcontracting, contracting, and outsourcing of jobs as a legitimate employment arrangement.

According to Carlo Olalo, the proliferation of contractualization today is caused by two factors – the law itself and the implementation of the law.

“Articles 106 to 109 give life to contractualization. This is why ending contractualization necessitates not just the passage of stricter implementing rules to regulate Articles 106 to 109, which has been the response of past administrations, We need to get rid of these provisions and instead have employers directly hire workers instead of coursing them through these contractors and labor agencies,” Olalo said.

The labor group said that there are several categories of employment which employers can place workers performing non-core functions in, such as seasonal, casual, project-based, and others.

“What we want to eliminate is the practice today of indiscriminately hiring workers needed in performing essential or core functions as contractual workers, and depriving them altogether of the chance to become regularized,” explained Olalo.

The labor group also called on lawmakers to immediately pass House Bill 556 or the Regular Employment Bill as the alternative to end contractualization.###

Reference: Carlo Olalo, secretary general, KMU-SMR, 0912386100

Posted in press release | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

NATIONALLY-COORDINATED ACTIONS AT JAPANESE EMBASSY AND CONSULATES TO SEEK RESOLUTION ON NAKASHIN STRIKE

Japanese Embassy Picketed over Nakashin Strike

National labor center Kilusang Mayo Uno held a picket-protest at the Japanese Embassy in Pasay City this morning to demand the regularization of Nakashin Davao International Inc. workers.

Workers of the Japanese food manufacturing and export company operating in Davao City have been on strike since May 25 to demand the reinstatement of 75 workers who were illegally retrenched, the regularization of all long-term contractuals, and the full payment of the workers’ Service Incentive Leave and other underpaid benefits.

“We are calling on the Japanese government to tell their companies here in the country to respect workers’ rights. They must tell Nakashin to reinstate their illegally-retrenched workers and regularize all its long-term contractual employees,” said Elmer “Ka Bong” Labog, KMU chairperson.

The Nakashin management terminated 75 workers last April 9 because of the latter’s refusal to sign waivers and quitclaims which would cut their length of service after workers held a protest demanding the regularization of long-term contractuals.

“The 75 workers who are asserting their regularization in Nakashin have been working in the company for four to nine years and therefore deserve nothing less, but were illegally retrenched. This is clearly a violation of workers’ rights and constitute contractualization,” said Labog.

The labor leader also insisted that the workers’ demands are just and the Nakashin management is bound by the Philippines’ labor laws to heed the demands and is more than capable of doing so.

“The long-term contractuals employed by the agencies hired by the company should already be deemed regular employees of Nakashin under the law, but are still being denied regularization. They have every right to hold a strike against this greedy capitalist,” Labog said.

Even existing labor laws state that employees who are performing tasks that are necessary and desirable to the usual business of the company – such as the Nakashin workers who are packers, slicers, cold storage attendants, and receivers – are considered regular employees.

The labor center meanwhile called on Filipino workers to support the strike of Nakashin workers, saying their fight for regularization is a blow to the Aquino government’s policy of promoting and legalizing contractual employment.

Posted in strike, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

KMU SOUTHERN MINDANAO IN THE NEWS

KMU Pickets Japanese Embassy, Consulate

The Kilusang Mayo Uno yesterday held coordinated protest actions in front of the Japanese embassy in Pasay and the Consular Office in the city to convince Japanese officials to mediate between the owner and the workers of the Nakashin Davao International, Inc.

Nag strike mi sa consulate aron ipanghimangno ang dili pagsunod sa Nakashin sa balaod pamuo diri sa nasud (We staged a picket at the Japanese consulate to make them realize that the company is not following the country’s labor laws),” KMU Secretary General Carlo Olalo told Mirror in an interview.

Olalo said they also asked the Japanese officials to talk to Nakashin owner Sumihito Nakao for the reinstatement and regularization of the 75 workers who were “illegally retrenched by the company.

“We are calling on the Japanese government to tell their companies here in the country to respect workers’ rights. They must tell Nakashin to reinstate their illegally-retrenched workers and regularize all its long-term contractual employees,” said Elmer “Ka Bong” Labog, KMU chairperson said through KMU’s Facebook account.

Olalo said the Nakashin management terminated 75 workers last April 9 because of the latter’s refusal to sign waivers and quitclaims which would cut their length of service after workers held a protest demanding the regularization of long-term contractuals.

This was however denied by Nakashin President Keisuke Nakao  who said “they are not our workers but they are employed by the agencies which we have contracted so they should address their complaints to the agencies.

Nakashin, which is engaged in the export of frozen fruits in Japan, Europe and other countries, has declared a shut down and is set to formally file company closure with the Labor Department. However, KMU said the company has not filed a formal notice of closure with the labor department yet.

“Until such a notice is duly served to the DOLE and to the workers, the claim of “shutting down” and “closing shop” remains to be a threat waved by Nakashin to suppress the strike,” Olalo said.

Nakao said the company has already lost P140 million since the KMU and the agency workers staged a barricade barring the company premises for months now.

Nakashin has several regular workers who are holding technical and important positions in the company but has contracted two agencies namely Workstation and DBS Advance Concept, with almost 300 workers for certain work requirements.

However, the company did not renew its contract with the said agencies after its workers complained of salary delays and other related complaints. Nakashin has contracted a new agency on the condition that the said agency would absorb the workers of the previous agencies so they would not lose their jobs.

While 240 of these workers have continued to work for Nakashin under the new agency, there were 75 workers who pressured the new agency to retain them and their tenure or years of service with the previous agency.

Since this was unacceptable to the new agency, the 75 workers have been fired. These are the same workers picketing the company, demanding reinstatement and regularization with Nakashin.

Olalo said the workers’ demands are just and the Nakashin management is bound by the Philippines’ labor laws to heed the demands and is more than capable of doing so.

“The long-term contractuals employed by the agencies hired by the company should already be deemed regular employees of Nakashin under the law, but are still being denied regularization. They have every right to hold a strike against this greedy capitalist,” Labog said.

Even existing labor laws state that employees who are performing tasks that are necessary and desirable to the usual business of the company – such as the Nakashin workers who are packers, slicers, cold storage attendants, and receivers – are considered regular employees.

While the KMU and several of the 75 workers have put barricades preventing the entry and exit of workers in the company premises, it was noted that they have not filed any case with the National Conciliation and Mediation Board (NCMB) and are in fact conducting an illegal protest according to Nakao.

While Vice Mayor Paulo Duterte has tried to mediate between the company and the protesting workers, and has urged the company not to close down yet for the sake of the 240 workers, but Nakao said the company has already suffered so much losses.

Nakashin exports up to 2,500 tons of frozen mango, pineapple and other fruits to other countries every year but with the ongoing protest, the company’s foreign customers have cancelled all their contracts with Nakashin which took years to negotiate and even threatened to sue Nakashin for breach of contract because of its failure to deliver.

The workers in the city are not just the ones that will be affected by Nakashin’s closure since hundreds of farmers in Maguindanao also rely on the company’s business as it sources its fruits from the area. Lovely Carillo

 

Lovely Carillo

FRI, JUNE 17, 2016

Posted in KMU-SMR in the NEWS, strike | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

On Nakashin’s closure threat

KILUSANG MAYO UNO
Press Statement
14 June 2016

On Nakashin’s closure threat

We condemn the management of Nakashin Davao International, Inc. led by its owner Sumihiro Nakao, for threatening to shut down business in response to workers’ legitimate demands and strike. This threat is aimed at pressuring the government to suppress the strike, turning public opinion against the Nakashin workers, and counter Filipino workers’ struggle against contractualization.

The Nakashin workers’ demands are just and Nakashin is perfectly capable of meeting them. The 75 workers who are asserting their regularization in Nakashin have been working in the company for four to nine years and therefore deserve nothing less, but were illegally retrenched. The long-term contractuals employed by the agencies hired by the company should already be deemed regular employees of Nakashin under the law, but are still being denied regularization.

Even the law states that employees who are performing tasks that are necessary and desirable to the usual business of the company – such as the Nakashin workers who are packers, slicers, cold storage attendants, and receivers – are considered regular employees.

The case of the Nakashin workers exposes the chronic contractualization scheme being carried out by capitalists and the government. While Nakashin employs only a handful regular workers in so-called important positions, it employs almost 300 contractuals for the most important aspects of its business. Nakashin does not recognize the existence of an employer-employee relationship between itself and the workers, despite the latter’s many years of essential service to the company. Even if workers have been working for the company for years, their right to unionize and right to strike were not being recognized.

The Nakashin workers were left by the management and the government with no option but to stand for their right to security of tenure by holding a strike. Nakashin’s refusal to regularize the workers and abide by the law only exposes its crookedness and greediness. As such, it left the workers with no option except to hold a strike. When workers’ basic rights to a minimum wage, regular employment and unionization are not recognized, then holding a strike is most just.

We urge the Nakashin management to abandon its plan and instead face its responsibility and continue negotiating with the workers to come up with a fair settlement. Lastly, we are appealing to incoming President Rodrigo Duterte to step in to this present dispute and come up with a solution that affirms his declaration of scrapping contractualization.

Posted in 2016, strike | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

KMU DISMAYED BY VICE MAYOR PAOLO DUTERTE’S ACTIONS

Lifting from the statement:

KMU DISMAYED BY VICE MAYOR PAOLO DUTERTE’S ACTIONS

Labor group Kilusang Mayo Uno Southern Mindanao expresses dismay over the actions of Davao City Vice Mayor Paolo “Pulong” Duterte in front of striking workers on May 30 at the Nakashin Davao International, Inc. at Malagamot Panacan, Davao City.

To the shock of KMU and the striking workers of Nakashin Davao International, an irate VM Duterte lashed out and hurled expletives at Ka Romualdo “Dodong” Basilio, a regional official of KMU-SMR that day at the picketline.

Worse, VM Duterte berated and threw invectives at Ka Dodong Basilio such as “Putang ina ka…” “Ikaw ra makinabang ani”… “Ugok”….”Putang ina, badyak-badyakan tika dira karon…” “Bungol man siguro ka… tan-awa imong tiyan dako kaayo…” (Verbatim translation: “Your mother is a whore”… “Only you will benefit from this,”… “Idiot”…. “Your mother is a whore… I will give you a beating”… “Are you deaf? Look at your huge belly!”). Such conduct is unbecoming of a government official particularly when in the midst of an ongoing labor dispute. VM Duterte’s actions are abusive and should not be countenanced.

VM Duterte’s views are a stark contrast to that of his father President Rodrigo Duterte, who has made a powerful stand towards ending contractualization in the country.

In light of this, we seek VM Duterte’s apology. KMU Southern Mindanao does not disregard VM Duterte’s efforts in providing the workers a venue for dialogue with Nakashin. However, his current status in society does not give him license to disparage other lowly citizens, especially ordinary workers.

Kmu Southern Mindanao Region's photo.


 

KILUSANG MAYO UNO – SOUTHERN MINDANAO
PRESS STATEMENT
Mayo 31, 2016

KMU dismayed over Vice Mayor Paolo Duterte’s actions

Labor group Kilusang Mayo Uno Southern Mindanao expresses dismay over the actions of Davao City Vice Mayor Paolo “Pulong” Duterte in front of striking workers on May 30 at the Nakashin Davao International, Inc. at Malagamot Panacan, Davao City.

To the shock of KMU and the striking workers of Nakashin Davao International, an irate VM Duterte lashed out and hurled expletives at Ka Romualdo “Dodong” Basilio, a regional official of KMU-SMR that day at the picketline.

There is no truth to VM Duterte’s accusation that Dodong Basilio must be blamed for the collapse of negotiations with the owner of Nakashin regarding the demands of the striking workers.

There is no truth to VM Duterte’s statement that on Saturday (May 28), an agreement to dismantle the strike camp had been reached between Duterte and the striking workers and that it was KMU that reneged on that agreement.

The truth is VM Duterte dialogued with the workers at the request of the owner of Nakashin who wanted the workers to stop barricading the company gate so that the company can resume its operations. On Saturday, what emerged from the dialogue was the commitment of the workers that they will not hesitate to end the barricade if a written settlement agreement will be reached to settle the issue between the strikers and Nakashin.

During the same dialogue, VM Duterte announced that the Japanese owner of Nakashin has agreed to give the demands of the workers such as backwages and regularization. VM Duterte also announced that his office will prepare a draft agreement and will send the draft that same day (Saturday) for the workers’ review.

The workers waited until late evening on Saturday but no draft agreement came from VM Duterte’s office. Since no agreement had been reached thus far between Nakashin on Saturday, the workers did not dismantle the barricade.

The workers decided to continue the strike, contrary to VM Duterte’s accusation that Dodong Basilio commanded the workers to push on. The workers waited for the promised agreement and they waited in vain.

Worse, VM Duterte berated and threw invectives at Dodong Basilio such as “Putang ina ka…” “Ikaw ra makinabang ani”… “Ugok”….”Putang ina, badyak-badyakan tika dira karon…” “Bungol man siguro ka… tan-awa imong tiyan dako kaayo…” (Verbatim translation: “Your mother is a whore”… “Only you will benefit from this,”… “Idiot”…. “Your mother is a whore… I will give you a beating”… “Are you deaf? Look at your huge belly!”). Such conduct is unbecoming of a government official particularly when in the midst of an ongoing labor dispute. VM Duterte’s actions are abusive and should not be countenanced.

In addition, we view the appearance of Atty. Manases “Mans” Carpio, brother-in-law of VM Duterte and husband of incoming Mayor Inday Sara Duterte at the picketline as a lawyer for Nakashin as conflict of interest.

VM Duterte missed a significant fact in his handling of the Nakashin strike. It is Nakashin who first violated labor laws and not the striking workers. Nakashin is guilty of “labor-only contracting” or the hiring of contractual workers for usually necessary and desirable services. Such practice is illegal in our laws because workers who perform these tasks should be regularized. Instead they are made perpetual contractuals under labor agencies.

Nakashin has long violated labor laws which have deprived workers of their right to job security, not to mention long-standing unfair labor practices and harsh treatment of its workers who are made to work up to 14 hours every day and are not allowed to sit down.

It is not only the 75 striking workers who are victims of labor rights violations committed by Nakashin but covers more than 200 workers of the company.

If VM Duterte is sincere in helping the workers, why not demand first from Nakashin, a foreign-owned company, to comply with Philippine labor laws which ban labor-only contracting and the degrading treatment of workers?

VM Duterte’s contempt against Dodong Basilio shows his contempt for the workers and Kilusang Mayo Uno, thereby exposing himself to be on the side of capitalists. Ka Dodong Basilio has served the working class as a labor leader for 29 years and his record of commitment and dedication to the upliftment of the lives of workers is unimpeachable. Ka Dodong lives simply and from the beginning of his service until now as a labor leader and negotiator for the workers, he has not accepted any personal favors or bribes from capitalists.

VM Duterte’s views are a stark contrast to that of his father President Rodrigo Duterte, who has made a powerful stand towards ending contractualization in the country.

Contractualization is a scheme imposed by neoliberal policies under a global capitalist system. Ending contractualization requires strong political will and decisive actions from those who lead our nation of which upholding the right to security of tenure should be given supremacy.

In light of this, we seek VM Duterte’s apology. KMU Southern Mindanao does not disregard VM Duterte’s efforts in providing the workers a venue for dialogue with Nakashin. However, his current status in society does not give him license to disparage other lowly citizens, especially ordinary workers.

Lastly, we are bringing the case of Nakashin workers to the attention of President Rodrigo Duterte. We remain hopeful that President Duterte can provide intervention and immediate assistance to the workers who have been stripped of their livelihoods.###

Reference Person:
Carl Anthony “Carlo” Olalo
Secretary-general, KMU Southern Mindanao
09123861000

Posted in 2016, strike | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment