SBMA’s contractualization gets solons’ close scrutiny

Published May 29, 2018, 5:03 PM

by Francine Ciasico

By Charissa Luci-Atienza

As the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) released the list of top 20 companies that engaged in labor-only contracting, the Makabayan bloc filed a resolution on Tuesday seeking congressional probe on the rampant contractualization of employment in the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA).

Rep. Carlos Isagani Zarate (Bayan Muna Party list Facebook page / MANILA BULLETIN)
Rep. Carlos Isagani Zarate
(Bayan Muna Party list Facebook page / MANILA BULLETIN)

Bayan Muna Rep. Carlos Isagani Zarate led the filing of House Resolution 1916, saying that the general situation of the Filipino workers in the country is reflected on the workers of the SBMA.

“At least half of the total work force of the SBMA are contractuals and this has to be corrected immediately but instead of being regularized ,the SBMA workers are facing the threat of losing their jobs,” he said.

He said starting April 2018, the SBMA administration took initial steps on “streamlining its work force”, supposedly in compliance with the joint resolution passed by the Civil Service Commission, Commission on Audit, and the Department of Budget and Management, (CSC-COA-DBM JR No.1 s.2017) which states that Contract of Service
workers are to be terminated by December 31, 2018.

“There is no security of tenure with worker’s rights vulnerable under the prevailing contractualization scheme, compounded by other government issuances and policies such as the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) DO 174 and the CSC-COA-DBM Joint Circular No.1 s2017,” Zarate laments.

He noted that since 2011, the employment of SBMA workers are categorized as contract of services/job order/memorandum-of-agreement.

“What is worse though is that the SBMA is a government owned and/or controlled corporation (GOCC) and it should be the Duterte government that is supposedly spearheading the fight against ENDO and contractualization. In fact it is the government itself that is the biggest ENDO violator with more than 721,282 contractuals and its other derivatives, out of the 2,302,191 government employees since 2016 based on the Inventory of Government Human Resources,” the progressive solon said.

Under House Resolution 1916, the Makabayan lawmakers strongly urged the House Committee on bases Conversion and the House Committee on Labor and Employment to look into the SBMA’s violation of workers’ rights in the past 25 years.

“We hope that Congress can probe this matter immediately and not only would the workers be retained but they should be regularized as well,” Zarate said.

“The attacks on the rights of our labor force must be stopped, especially the rampant contractualization, which has even the bane of all workers in the Philippines for decades,” he said.

Joining Zarate in filing the resolution were ACT Teachers partylist Reps. Antonio Tinio and France Castro, Gabriela Reps. Emmi de Jesus and Arlene Brosas, Anakpawis Rep. Ariel Casilao and Kabataan Rep. Sarah Jane Elago.