Southern Mindanao Workers Stand on EO Vs. Illegal ‘Endo’

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DAVAO CITY, Philippines — The convergence of workers for the Labor Day Protest and the signing of the Executive Order to end illegal contractualization by President Rodrigo Duterte  drew mixed reaction   from workers in Southern Mindanao.

On May 1,  during the International Labor’s Day event in Cebu City, President Duterte signed to prohibit illegal contracting and sub-contracting.

Workers welcome the EO but militant labor groups say something is missing in the EO.

Michael Cuebo is one of the 65 individuals who were terminated by Coca-Cola FEMSA Philippines with no reason last April 2, 2018. Cuebo said, in an interview, that what the contractual workers need is for them to be regularize to ensure security of tenure and receive all of the other benefits due them.

“Mas maayo sa amung mga trabahante ang pagsign anang EO kaso amung gi-apas karon kay trabaho kay natangtang mi sa Coca-Cola na wala mi kabalo ngano ug maayo man amung performance.”

Another contractual worker of 10 years from CPI-Sumifru, Aiza Maglupay also calls for regularization and increase of wage to support her family. She is glad to hear the signing of EO because it is a door for all contractual workers to be regular. From the perspective of a government official..

Police Senior Inspector Leo Alce told Newsline that the Labor Day protest is good because citizens have the right to express their grievances as long as the means of expressing is peaceful.

“Nag-agi pud ko ug contractual pero eventually sa government policy kay mapermanent man ka kapag masatisfy nimo ang requirements. Kumbaga naay security of tenure,” he added. According to PSI Alce, the signing of EO is positive and timely news for the contractual workers to be permanent particularly to those working for long years in a company.

However, some found the EO signing vague that need the vigilance from the people. According to Jill Banta, a teacher of Apu Palamguwan Cultural Education Center in Bukidnon that concerns raised in the protest are valid and should be listen by the President and all agency involved.

“The signing of the new Executive Order is a stepping stone but it is not enough. More has to be done. Contractualization, just wages and right of workers should be resolve.”

For Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) worker, the dynamic and fastest growing sector in the country, Pierre Gilles said that the Labor Day protest is a commemoration to all workers for they are important for industry machineries.

He said that the EO signing seemed to water down the plight of the workers on their struggles in their current condition.

Tyrone Velez, a media practitioner said to Newsline that the Labor Day Protest has been campaigning the interests of workers such as end of contractualization, job security, decent wage and workers’ rights since Martial law of the Marcos regime.

“Lisod jud na kay naa gani uban na pila na ka years gatrabaho, media practitioner part of media group pero kontraktwal lang gihapon. Legitimate gyud ni nga panawagan kay everyone deserves decent wage and security of tenure para mabuhi.”

On the new executive order, Velez told Newsline that the order is vague and it favors the company. “There is no such thing as illegal or legal ENDO,  ENDO is ENDO.” Although there is diversity on perspectives of workers from different sectors, the mutual call is for tenure security, decent wages and workers’ rights.-Pia Duran/Newsline.ph

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