Isabela solon seeks explanation over salary deductions of power coop workers
MANILA, Philippines — A lawmaker looking into the alleged illegal salary deductions from salaries of Isabela Electric Cooperative (Iselco-I) workers has demanded an explanation from executives of a foundation where the deducted wages go to.
During a House hearing, Isabela 6th District Rep. Inno Dy asked officials of One-EC MCO Network Foundation to appear during the next scheduled House hearing to explain why they have received over P1.5 million from the illegally deducted salaries of employees of Iselco-I.
“This forced deduction from the salaries of Iselco-I employees is unjust. The employees did not give permission, yet they have been abused since 2019. So we have to find out why they were being made to pay,” Dy said.
Ongoing investigations by the House committee on energy and committee on North Luzon Growth Quadrangle revealed that employees’ salaries were deducted monthly since 2019 for contributions to One-EC MCO Network Foundation.
Dy explained during the investigation that the contributions were allegedly for the rehabilitation of lines, power restoration, and addressing shortages of electrical materials in other electric cooperatives.
“So this support or contribution to 1EC, it is stated here that because there are always typhoons, earthquakes that distribution utilities encounter every year, this is the contribution of employees for the rehabilitation of lines and power restoration, shortage of electrical materials in other electric cooperatives, as stated here with all other electric coops,” he said.
Dy expressed bewilderment as to why employees were being burdened with such responsibilities and forced to make payments.
“Several employees have filed complaints against Iselco-I board and management with NEA (National Electrification Administration) stating that deductions are being made from their salaries,” Dy said.
In a joint affidavit filed by Iselco-I employees, it was revealed that rank and file employees were being deducted P100 monthly without their consent, while supervisors were deducted P150, department heads P200, general managers P500, and the board of directors P200.
According to Emilia de Guzman, Supervising Labor and Employment Officer from the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), such deductions are illegal as they are not included in the allowable deductions outlined by the agency.
The DOLE’s Labor Advisory No. 11 Series of 2014: Non-Interference in the Disposal of Wages and Allowable Deductions states that employers may only deduct from employees’ wages those authorized by law, including insurance premiums, or if the deductions are made with written authorization from employees.
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