This, after a ricemill owner was sentenced to a jail term of six years and a day by a Regional Trial Court in Cauayan, Isabela.
Eliza Manalata, owner of Block M Enterprises, is convicted to six years of imprisonment and to pay a fine of PHP20,000 for not remitting more than PHP50,000 monthly contributions of her employees.
“The conviction of Manalata shows that SSS is serious in running after all erring employers. It does not matter whether the delinquency is big or small, if employers violate the law then they have to be punished,” SSS President and Chief Executive Officer Emmanuel Dooc said in a statement.
“Once again, we remind employers of their responsibility to report their workers for SSS coverage and remit employees’ contributions in full and on time. We call on members to remain vigilant in monitoring their monthly SSS contributions to ensure that their employers fulfill their obligations,” said Dooc.
The Cauayan court decision declared Manalata failed to pay the monthly contributions of her employees from April 2000 to March 2003 amounting to PHP59,829.73 despite demand letters by SSS in Cauayan.
She was then notified to appear in court several times through her last known address but she did not attend any of the court hearings.
The Philippine National Police of Santiago, Isabela even helped in sending the subpoenas and notices.
On June 7, 2017, lawyer Carol Donato of the Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) told the Cauayan RTC they couldn’t locate the accused. Donato is Manalata’s lawyer.
Dooc said Manalata’s absence is a prima facie evidence of her guilt in violating the law.
“She missed her chance to defend herself in court or a possible out-of-court settlement,” Dooc added.
As Dooc called on the employees of Manalata and the public to inform SSS about Manalata’s whereabouts, he reminded employers to pay their employees’ contributions no matter how small the amount is.–