Iloilo City barangay officials under probe for collecting fees on emergency employment

Published November 15, 2021, 7:30 PM

by Tara Yap

ILOILO CITY — The Western Visayas regional office of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE-6) is probing barangay (village) officials in Iloilo City for allegedly collecting processing fees for an on emergency employment for those affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We will not tolerate any wrongdoings. As far as we are concerned, we are supposed to protect the rights of the workers and they are entitled to the full payment of their wages,” said Atty. Sixto Rodriguez Jr., DOLE-6 regional director.

This was after several workers filed a formal complaint before DOLE-6. They alleged that barangay officials deducted Ph925 for their two-week wage for cleanup work under DOLE’s Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Displaced or Disadvantaged Workers Program (TUPAD).

Workers clean up debris as part of an emergency employment program for those affected by COVID-19 in Iloilo City. (DOLE-6/Manila Bulletin)

“There is no processing fee. We do not require that. It is illegal because that is not in the guidelines,” Rodriguez emphasized.

“The workers are entitled to every centavo of their wages,” added Rodriquez.

Aside from the alleged deduction of Php925 from the Php 5,925 wage, the workers were also made to do work in a separate barangay and not in their own barangay.

Rodriguez also emphasized that TUPAD beneficiaries should only render community service to the barangays they are residing in.