KMU-SOUTHERN MINDANAO DENOUNCE LATEST AFP ATTACKS ON UNIONISTS AND FARMERS IN COMVAL

PRESS STATEMENT
September 4, 2018

KMU-SOUTHERN MINDANAO DENOUNCE LATEST AFP ATTACKS ON UNIONISTS AND FARMERS IN COMVAL

The Kilusang Mayo Uno Southern Mindanao denounces the attacks on two union leaders of the Sumifru Packing Plant this week, which shows that the Duterte regime is intensifying attacks on union workers.

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Victor Ageas, Board of Director of Nagkahiusang Mamumuo sa Suyapa Farm (NAMASUFA-NAFLU-KMU) was ambushed by motorcycle-riding gunmen on September 4, 6:30 am while he was bound for work at Sumifru Packing Plant 340 at Purok Uno, Barangay Osmeña. Ageas evaded his assailants who opened fire at him six times.

The attack came a day after workers of Sumifru in Compostela staged a protest action against the company for refusing to recognize them as their regular employees and to negotiate for collective bargaining agreement. Continue reading

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LAO ARBITRARILY DETAINS COKE PROTESTING WORKERS

Kilusang Manggagawa ng Coca Cola (KIMACO)-KMU slams the Philippine National Police Talomo station Chief Insp. Ronald Lao for detaining the ten Coca-Cola protesting workers beyond the period provided by law.

The Revised Penal Code mandates the period for which public officers must deliver detained persons to judicial authorities.

The ten workers, who were brutally arrested during their protest on April 2, Monday at 9 in the morning, have been in detention for more than 48 hours without any information being filed in court. Lao’s insistence on not releasing the detained workers is a clear violation not only of Article 125 of the Revised Penal Code, but more importantly of the workers’ constitutional right to liberty.

PCI Ronald Lao reasoned that they are waiting for the Fiscal’s order and resolution before making a decision. To this hour, no resolution has yet been made by the City Prosecution Office.

We maintain that neither the PNP nor the Prosecutor’s Office has jurisdiction over the strike of the Coca-Cola workers. This is a
labor dispute, well under the jurisdiction of DOLE. Also, the workers never harassed any individual, obstructed the traffic, and committed illegal acts to warrant their arrest.

This is a case of criminalizing the workers’ legitimate exercise of their right for redress against grievances, right to assembly and protest. The illegal arrest and continued arbitrary detention of the workers are but attempts to silence workers who are standing for their rights and fighting ENDO.

We are currently looking into filing administative charges against PCI Ronald Lao.

We demand the immediate release of the ten striking Coca-Cola workers and an end to Endo and the criminalization of workers’ struggles.#

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Coca Cola workers’ protest is not a criminal act, Endo is

KILUSANG MAYO UNO – SOUTHERN MINDANAO

Press Statement
3 April 2018

Coca Cola workers’ protest is not a criminal act, Endo is

The Kilusang Mayo Uno condemns Mayor Sara Duterte and the Philippine National Police for treating and maligning the striking Coca Cola workers as lawbreakers.

Let us make it clear that the protest action of the Kilusang Manggagawa ng Coca-Cola (KIMACO) workers’ association is legitimate in protesting the “endo” scheme that the multi-billion dollar Coca Cola company is practicing. 127 workers were dismissed from work upon their “end of contract” (endo) from labor agency Work Experts and Allied Services, Inc. They have worked for Coca Cola Femsa Phils., Inc. as Helpers, Pickers, Tarpers, Bad Order Dumpers, Segregators and Sweepers between five to ten years and were described in their contracts as “project employees” but were repeatedly hired throughout their entire stay at Coca Cola Femsa. On March 31, 2018, their contracts were terminated and they were left jobless.

The Coca-Cola workers believe that under the law, given their length of service, they have to be made regular by the company. Thus, they find their dismissal from work unjust, more so, they find the continuing practice of endo a social evil, which Pres. Duterte did not stop despite his promise to end this scheme.

The protest action of the Coca-Cola workers on April 2 is within the workers’ right to association and assembly. We condemn how PNP Chief Inspector Ronald Lao turned two-faced even after our dialogue with him and with the KIMACO leadership. During the dialogue, it was clear to Chief Insp. Lao that the KIMACO was willing to disperse voluntarily if the management of Coca Cola will hear their grievance.

The PNP used excessive force by deploying 25 SWAT members, 40 PNP personnel, 30 Task Force Davao and 30 Police Auxiliary to disperse 80 protesters. They toted guns at the workers and arrested KIMACO chair Sustenes Bantayan, and nine workers: Reynaldo Aman, Michael Ulan-Ulan, Bryan Palera, Ricardo Sales, Romel Calacat, Anthony Bayawan, Jessie Montecillo, Alvin Buccat, and Ian Debalde. They were arrested and charged with Resisting Arrest and Grave Coercion.

Amidst these injuries suffered by the workers, Mayor Sara Duterte had the gall to twist the facts. She claimed the workers refused to negotiate peacefully and labeled the workers as law breakers.

As typical of the Duterte administration’s propaganda, Mayor Inday’s statement diverts the legitimate concerns of the workers by bringing it down to the trivial issue of blocking of exit and entry points.

The public interest is not whether the delivery of Coca Cola products can be met by the day. The public interest is the workers’ struggle to demand an end to contractualization, one of the promises which the Duterte government did not deliver.

Obviously, Mayor Duterte and Police Chief Insp. Lao were only interested in protecting the interests of Coca Cola company and holds no sympathy for the workers.

We demand the immediate release of the ten detained workers and the dropping of preposterous charges against them. We call on Coca Cola Femsa to listen to the grievances of its workers and reinstate the 127 dismissed workers as regular workers. Finally, we call on all workers and the public to continue the vigilant fight to end Endo, to take this issue on the streets to press the Duterte administration to give in to our demands for decent jobs and living wages.#

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KMU in the NEWS : Coke workers released after 4 days in police detention

10 Coca-Cola workers face charges after a protest in Davao City

by: Mara Genotiva

 

DAVAO CITY, Philippines –Police authorities released 10 Coca-cola workers charged with “simple disobedience” after four days in detention.

On Thursday, protesting workers of Coca-cola along with support groups trooped at the Philippine National Police Talomo station  to demand the immediate release of 10 of their colleagues who were arrested last Monday, citing that the 36-hour period for filing of cases had already lapsed.

Kilusang Manggagawa laban sa Coca-cola-Kilusang Mayo Uno (KIMACO-KMU) said they will press charges against the Talomo police station for the arbitrary detention of the 10 workers.

The union stressed that the supposed complaints of the PNP regarding grave coercion and disobedience only constituted temporary detention up to 18 hours.

If they were charged with graver offense, the 36-hour period had already lapsed as of 10:00 pm of Tuesday, April 3.

Coke union workers staged a strike on Monday after 72 workers were terminated by their labor agency. Ten workers were arrested by the police hours later.

READ:10 Coca-Cola workers face charges after a protest in Davao City

“No resolution was released from the Prosecutor’s Office from their inquest on the PNP’s initial complaint of grave coercion and disobedience.  The PNP continues to detain the ten workers,” KIMACO-KMU said in a statement.

The workers’ camp filed at the Prosecutor’s Office on Wednesday, April 5, a motion to dismiss the case and release the respondents. They also submitted a letter of request addressed to the Talomo station commander for the immediate release of the unionists.

Davao Today was not able to get a statement from Talomo Police Chief Ronald Lao but PSI Bernie Suaga of the Talomo station on Wednesday said they cannot release the unionists because they are still waiting for the fiscal’s order.

“They [protesters] demand for the release of their colleagues, but it’s out of our hands as only the fiscal can decide,” said Suaga.

KAMACO-KMU refuted this saying this is a clear violation of the law.  The PNP has no legal basis for detaining the workers.

Bayan Muna party list representative Carlos Isagani Zarate said the police should be held accountable in detaining the respondents beyond the allowable period.

“They should have released them [workers] since no cases were filed between the allowable period. The police should know their limits. It’s true that they can arrest an individual if they see that an offense or crime was committed but they should also observe the rights of the arrested person,” said Zarate.

The Office of the City Prosecutor on Thursday afternoon issued a resolution signed by Associate Prosecution Attorney Delfin M. Suarez Jr., dismissing the complaints for “Tumults and other disturbances of public order and grave coercion” and only recommended to charge the workers with simple disobedience.

The union stressed that neither the PNP nor the Prosecutor’s Office has the jurisdiction over the strike of Coca-Cola workers considering that it is a case of labor dispute and should be addressed by the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).

“This is a case of criminalizing the workers’ legitimate right for redress of grievance, right to assembly and protest. It is but a means to silence workers who are fighting against ENDO [end of contract],” said KIMACO-KMU.

In jail, Ricardo Sales cried foul over the unjust dismissal by the company where he worked for almost nine years.

“Our length of service is enough for us to be made regular workers. After nine years of hard work, we were changed to floating status and dismissed instantly,” Sales in vernacular.

Sales related that before they were dismissed, they were even asked by the agency to train the new workers who will replace them.

“It was an insult to us,” said Sales.

Last month, Coca-Cola workers in Sta. Rosa, Laguna stage d a strike after the company refused to regularize 675 contractual workers as ordered by the DOLE Region IV-A.(davaotoday.com)

 

news from : http://davaotoday.com/main/politics/coke-workers-released-after-4-days-in-police-detention/

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KMU in the NEWS: Police break up picket outside Coke

Police break up picket outside Coke Tuesday, April 03, 2018

By JULIET C. REVITA

POLICEMEN broke up a picket and arrested 10 protesters in front of Coca-Cola Bottlers Philippines Inc. on Mc Arthur Highway, Barangay Bago Aplaya, Davao City, for blocking the company trucks and not allowing these to pass through.

In a spot report from Talomo Police Station 3, Davao City Police Office (DCPO) spokesperson Police Senior Inspector Ma. Teresita Gaspan said the 10 arrested protesters were subjected to inquest proceedings for grave coercion and violation of article 151 or the Resistance and Disobedience to a person in authority.

Initially, the Talomo police station received an information around 5:50 a.m. from the security personnel of Coca Cola Femsa that a rally was being conducted by former workers assigned as delivery sales assistant of the company outside their establishment.

Based on the report, the workers were under the Work Expert Agency and led by a certain Jorma Bantayan alias Ting of Kilusang Maggagawa ng Coca-Cola (Kimaco).

Responding to the report, duty officers of the police station led by Police Chief Inspector Ronald Lao, together with Special Weapons and Tactics team and City Peace and Security Company (CPSC), went to the areas and based on their initial investigation, the workers were supported by Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU) organization with KMU representative identified as Bobby Pablo.

“The group assembled and staged a protest action regarding the change of workers under work expert agency to newly hired BMPC Agency or B-Mirk Multipurpose Cooperative. Said protesters illegally blocked the two gates refusing the truck to get out of the premise,” the police report said.

Despite an attempt to peacefully settle the dispute, the protesters allegedly refused to cooperate with the peace officers and even became aggressive, putting up a blockade on the gates of Femsa, impeding the movement of products.

“[They] resisted and disobeyed from responding peace officers which resulted to arrest of some workers or protesters and now under the custody of this office for proper disposition,” the report added.

Arrested were Renaldo Amani, 24; Michael Ulan-ulan, 22; Bryan Falera, 22; Ricardo Sales, 36; Romel Calacat, 29; Antony Bayawan, 22; Jessie Montecillo, 29; Alvin Buccat, 29; Sustines Bantayan, 45; and Ian Debalde, 24.

With the tension between the protesters and security forces, Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio reminded demonstrators to adhere to the law or face charges.

“The Davao City Government respects the right of its people to protest and it has not shown hostility to groups expressing dissent, even allowing them to take their actions to the streets and air their voices in public – even during these days when the city is under Martial Law,” Duterte-Carpio said in a statement.

She said that while she respects the rights to freedom of expression, it does not give them the liberty to break the law, and thus she reminded those who might conduct protests in the future to not block the entrance and exit of establishments, not to harass non-protesting employees and pedestrians, and not to cause traffic to motorists.

There is already a standing order for police and the military to always observe maximum tolerance in dealing with protesters and avoid the escalation of violence, she said. Despite these rules set, the rallyists showed restraint to negotiate with the authorities.

“The protest has already compromised public interest. The protesters also ignored efforts to negotiate peacefully,” she said.

“Please note that while protesters can exercise their freedom to demonstrate, this does not give them the free pass to break laws and expect to just walk away from it,” she said.

The mayor also said that the arrested protesters “will be facing appropriate criminal charges in court.”

Read more: http://www.sunstar.com.ph/davao/local-news/2018/04/03/police-break-picket-outside-coke-596530
Follow us: @sunstaronline on Twitter | SunStar Philippines on Facebook

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Bottling and feeds processing workers protest DOLE decision denying them regular status

DAVAO CITY – On the 29th anniversary of the passage of the Herrera Law, contractual workers of Coca-Cola FEMSA Davao and Julu Feeds, Inc. picketed the regional office of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) to protest against the recent decision acquitting labor agencies working under both companies of Labor-Only Contracting (LOC). The decision earned the ire of the protesting contractual workers since under the law, if such agencies are proven to practice LOC, an employer-employee relationship automatically exists between the principal and the workers, meaning that the workers would attain regular status with both Coca-Cola and Julu as their employers, respectively.

Image may contain: outdoorThe decision penned by the DOLE Regional Director Raymundo Agravante declared that the alleged existence of LOC by the agencies are “unfounded” and thus ruled against the workers.

Meanwhile, Kilusang Mayo Uno-SMR blasted the decision, saying that it was clearly arrived at without thorough examination and scrutiny of the evidence presented by the workers.

“We are frustrated with the arbitrary ruling of the DOLE Regional Director because the workers presented strong evidence that LOC exists. The agencies had no substantial capitalization and both Coca-Cola and Julu clearly exerted control over the conduct of workers, standards, and process. The DOLE deliberately ignored such evidence and just proceeded to decide in favor of the capitalists,” said Carl Anthony Olalo, secretary-general of KMU-SMR.

The labor center further stated that workers count on the DOLE to provide at least an objective view of each case before releasing a decision which has disastrous consequences on their livelihood.

“This decision deprives contractual workers with the security of tenure they deserve, after years of working for the company. The least that the DOLE can do is apply the letter of the law objectively, which it did not do,” added Olalo.

Olalo blamed the country’s existing labor laws, such as PD 442 or the Labor Code and the Herrera Law, for legitimizing or ignoring the insidiousness of contractualization. Olalo further admonished the DOLE that they should expect more intensified protests from the workers in light of the compromise position Pres. Duterte has taken with respect to ending contractualization.

“If Duterte takes his promises lightly, we do not. Work is our livelihood, and a property right. We will do everything we can in order to ensure that every contractual worker is regularized. We want Duterte to sign the EO prepared by the labor sector. It’s all or nothing,” concluded Olalo.###

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On Hearts Day: Workers lament continued Endo

PRESS RELEASE

February 14, 2018

On Hearts Day: Workers lament continued Endo

DAVAO CITY – Workers call the administration’s failure to end labor contractualization as ‘heartless’ as people world over celebrate Valentine’s Day.

Image may contain: one or more people, crowd and outdoor“More than being heartbroken due to Duterte’s unfulfilled promise, we are appalled by the fact that contractualization is like a tragedy that continues to ruin lives of millions of workers all over the country,” said Carl Olalo, KMU Southern Mindanao Secretary-General.

The group said President Rodrigo Roa Duterte promised to ban the “end of contract” or endo scheme during his campaign but did not even promulgate an Executive Order to make good on his promise.

In a dialogue with the labor sector on February 7, President Duterte again asked labor leaders for more time and consideration in fulfilling his campaign promise of ending contractualization.

“For two years in office, we are still where we left off. During Duterte’s campaign, he wooed the workers by promising to end contractualization if he will be elected but we have been left out in favor of business oligarchs ,” Olalo added.

Image may contain: 9 people, crowd and outdoorOlalo said that there have been too many broken promises from the President, not only with respect to contractualization but also on the implementation of genuine land reform, an independent foreign policy and weeding out corruption.

The labor leader also lambasted Duterte’s complete turnabout in his self-characterization as a “socialist”, saying he was untruthful considering that he has become the epitome of fascism, attempting to consolidate his power through a proposed Charter Change that can pave way for a dictatorship and allow the total sell-out of our national patrimony.

Olalo said that Duterte has turned his back on the peace process, undermined our sovereignty by being complicit to China’s militarization of Philippine territory, and declared all-out war not only against revolutionary groups but also against the Moro people with his extended Martial Law.

Duterte also promised never to end the Drug War which has already claimed the lives of more than 10,000 civilians and despite the impending scrutiny by the International Criminal Court. He has furthermore orchestrated a crackdown on dissent, targeting mainly progressive leaders and organizations of the Left.

“It is indeed heartbreaking to see President Duterte reverse his positions on issues affecting the poor and powerless. When he was still Mayor, he was consistent in helping the lumad and the peasants but now, he is killing the lumad and forcing them to relocate from their ancestral lands to pave way for corporations and mining companies to plunder their natural resources. The poor banked their hopes on Duterte to pull them from poverty but instead he unleashed the TRAIN which has run them over,” added Olalo.

“In his unabashed fascism, he has unraveled the extent of his misogyny and salaciousness with his order to the mercenary Armed Forces of the Philippines to shoot female revolutionary in the NPA in the vagina. He has shown his utter disrespect for women,” the labor leader explained.

“Gender violence is a reality in the lives of many women, including women workers. The President’s behavior and blatant sexism can no longer be tolerated by the workers. In the unions and in workplaces, we are trying to make spaces for women because we view them as equal partners in progress and development. We will continue doing so, and call out the President for his discrimination of women,” expressed Olalo.

“We rise with the rest of the women in the world today to call for an end to all gender violence. We no longer spare the President the benefit of the doubt that he will make good on his promises to create a pro-people and pro-worker government. It has been made very clear by the President himself who he really favors: it is the oligarchs and foreign monopoly capitalists. Enough is enough. Like any romantic relationship characterized by verbal or emotional abuse, the workers are rejecting Duterte on Valentine’s Day.There is no other recourse for the workers but to call for his immediate ouster,” the labor leader concluded.###

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#BigoSaEndo #EndoLangAngForever

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STATEMENT OF KILUSANG MAYO UNO ON THE SENSELESS GOVERNMENT CRACKDOWN ON THE LEGAL PROGRESSIVE ORGANIZATIONS

31 January 2018

PRESS STATEMENT

 STATEMENT OF KILUSANG MAYO UNO ON THE SENSELESS GOVERNMENT CRACKDOWN ON THE LEGAL PROGRESSIVE ORGANIZATIONS

 In the nearly two years since Duterte sat in power, the only thing that has been regularized are the threats on the democratic rights of the workers. Through his reckless declarations of going after so-called legal fronts of the New People’s Army (NPA), our member unions and federations across the region have reported leaders and unionists being constantly harassed, publicly threatened, and red-tagged by elements of the fascist military.

Around 1 p.m. in January 29, 2018, combined elements of 66th IBPA & 25th IBPA gathered the residents of Sitio Pogi, Brgy. San Miguel, Compostela, Compostela Valley Province and presented names of civilians who allegedly have links and responsibilities in the revolutionary NPA. Included among those maliciously tagged are union leaders in a banana company, namely Roland Cobrado, Perlita Milallos, and Elmer Atamosa. In that meeting, the soldiers unabashedly called on the residents present to convince the aforementioned union leaders to surrender to the authorities within three (3) days or else be arrested or killed. In the presence of workers, relatives and friends of the leaders, the soldiers proudly declared that they are merely implementing the order of the Commander-in-Chief to go after the leaders of the “legal fronts” of the NPA.

Kilusang Mayo Uno – Southern Mindanao condemns to the utmost this brazen act of the AFP with the blessing of their Commander-in-Chief Duterte. The Compostela area is recognized as a hotspot of labor rights violations by the International Labour Organisation (ILO), and the military’s involvement and intervention in labor-related matters have been constantly documented. Many of our union leaders have faced threats, harassment or death due to their resistance to capitalist oppression. Cobrado, Milallos and Atamosa are known not for being leaders of the NPA but as unfailing resisters against illegal dismissals, contractualization and union busting.

The regime has orchestrated a series of arrests against key leaders of the mass movement in its bid to set the stage for a massive crackdown of the legal Left. Days ago, the leader of the teachers’ union ACT-NCR was targeted for arrest, calls for the surrender of known progressive leaders Sheena Duazo of BAYAN-SMR and Hanimay Suazo of Karapatan-SMR were aired at ABS-CBN’s DXAB and Maayong Buntag Mindanao, and an NPA “surrenderee” . Quiroga was paraded by the military as a coordinator of Anakpawis Partylist. In addition, simulation of lockdown in Davao City and other parts of the country are already scheduled to create a climate of immediate terror threat to condition the people to consent to nationwide martial law.

The workers will not consent but resist all attempts at violating their constitutional rights and rights provided for under international labour laws. The workers hold both the AFP and US-Duterte regime accountable for whatever befalls the three leaders and any other worker or unionist as a result of this senseless government crackdown. This only emboldens us to rally our ranks and strengthen our unity against the terror acts of this regime and uphold the democratic rights of workers and the people. We will continue to fight government fascism as we call for higher wages, regular jobs, and our democratic rights.#

 
For reference:

Carl Olalo,
Secretary General-KMU Southern Mindanao Region
Contact #: 09123861000

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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. #

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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.#

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