While agreeing with its decision to pass on to Congress the issue of “endo”, Pimentel said the executive branch should still look into the order providing the guidelines on contractualization.
“‘Pag dating po sa idea na ang policy on employment and the different types of employment or status which we will allow, it should be determined by Congress, tama po yun. (When it comes to the idea of policy of employment and the different types of employment or status which we will allow, it should be determined by Congress. That is correct),” Pimentel said in a television interview Friday.
“Pero sana tignan ng executive branch na yung policy kasi set na noon pa sa Labor Code pa. Nagulo because of a certain department order, so paki-review. (But I hope that the executive branch will see that the policy has been set long ago in the Labor Code. It became ambiguous because of a certain department order. So, please review),” he, however, appealed.
Pimentel was referring to the Department of Labor and Employment’s (DOLE) DO No. 174, series of 2017, which sets stricter guidelines for contractualization.
The DO, signed by Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III in March last year, repealed the DO No. 18 issued in 2011 which contained the original rules on contracting and subcontracting arrangement in employment.
The new DO “totally” prohibits labor-only contracting or the practice where the contractor/subcontractor, also known as the manpower agency “merely recruits or supplies workers to perform a job or work” for an employer. It also bans the “repeated hiring” of an agency of employees under a repeated contract of short duration.
In a phone interview with reporters Thursday, Pimentel, recalling his law school days, maintained that “endo”, or the end-of-contract scheme by employers, has long been prohibited, saying the issuance of such DOs only allowed them.
The Senate chief repeated his call Friday, asking the executive branch to repeal the DO.
“Executive branch, paki-review yung (please review the) department order kasi the repeal or amendment of department order is within the jurisdiction of executive branch,” Pimentel said.
Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque on Thursday said President Duterte may not sign anymore an Executive Order adressing “endo” after Bello opted to let the Congress address the issue.
Senator Joel Villanueva, however, believes that there should still be a “clear directive” from the Palace on the policy on contractualization, saying it would be helpful to expedite the passage of the proposed End of Endo Act, has been pending in the Senate.
“We still expect Malacañang to issue an EO to provide the framework and guidance for the implementation of a national policy on contractualization. We should know the clear position of the executive on this matter. We want to ensure that what we are legislating is useful and effective,” Villanueva, chair of the Senate committee on labor, employment, and human resources development, said in a statement.
But he also welcomed Roque’s assurance that Duterte will certify the measure as urgent.
The House of Representatives last January passed a counterpart bill prohibiting the practice of “endo.”