Radyo ni Juan employees dissent sudden closure and dismissal amid COVID-19 crisis

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DAVAO CITY—The employees of 94.7 Radyo ni Juan Davao (RNJ) has expressed dissent to the sudden company closure and their dismissal from work by their employer, Infomedia Resources Management (INFORM) Inc., at the height of the COVID19 outbreak.

Station’s News Director Efren Armilla said in a statement, the group called the closure as bogus with an insufficient basis. 

Armilla said the 677-square meter property in Shrine Hills, Davao City, and other properties in the cities of Tagum, Digos, Kidapawan, and Cagayan de Oro are strong evidence of its adequacy.

He said INFORM offered an early retirement in October 2019 with enough funds to pay for their separation fees, which for them, seemed questionable and conflicting to the idea of retrenchment and closure due to financial problems.

Armilla said employees even resorted to various loans after salaries were partially released by the finance office prior to the COVID19 outbreak. Many of them only received P1,000 to spend for two weeks, and receive the balance on the next payroll.

“Usahay maabtan na lang sa sunod nga kinsena, wala pa gihapon nakumpleto ang among sweldo sa niaging hugna (Sometimes, the balance from its previous partial salary will remain even to the next pay day), he said. 

Armilla said their pay as of this moment will not even sustain for their daily needs such as food and most them were already full of loans just to to survive due to their insufficient salary. 

He also revealed that the employees’ benefits were deducted from their salaries, but were not paid to respective government offices which make them worried, especially that they had a colleague who was about to give birth at that time.

Armilla said one of their co-employee Jerome Buyco, exposed the unpaid sales commissions by the management.

He said Buyco told them that in some cases, commissions worth almost P100, 000 were kept and held by the company for years. Also, when employees were transferred to another company, they weren’t provided with their separation pay.

Armilla said INFORM-RNJ Davao employees challenged INFORM’s EVP Grace Uddin, HR Officer Daisy Gonzales, and President Sr. Concepcion Gasang in an immediate negotiation for the last time, as they were said to be “the main orchestrators of the closure and dismissal”. 

INFORM is an affiliate of RMC Broadcasting Corporation and was permitted to manage and operate four of RMCBC’s radio frequencies located in Tagum, Kidapawan, Digos, and Davao under the brand name of Radyo ni Juan prior to its shutdown.-Armando Fenequito Jr.

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