PCSO eases employees’ fears over another move
MANILA, Philippines—The Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) has downplayed employees’ concerns over the agency’s transfer to Mandaluyong City.
“The (PCSO’s) services to the public will remain unaffected even as the office is transferring its location,” general manager Jose Ferdinand M. Rojas II said in a statement, responding to a full-page advertisement put out by the Sweepstakes Employees Union (SEU) in the Inquirer on May 23.
The PCSO began moving its headquarters out of the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) in Pasay City on May 10, starting with its executive offices. Last week, the agency transferred its legal and internal audit offices.
The new office is located at the Sun Plaza Building on Shaw Boulevard, Barangay Wack-Wack, Greenhills East, Mandaluyong City.
In a recent announcement posted on its website, the agency said its lease contract with the PICC will expire at the end of June and will not be renewed “to give way to much-needed renovation and construction work in preparation for the 2015 Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit in Manila.”
The SEU had run an ad on Friday, asking President Aquino in an open letter to stop the transfer of the agency’s offices until its permanent office in San Marcelino, Manila, was finished.
The SEU called the transfer a waste of around P100 million that could have gone to charity or for the benefit of the agency’s employees.
The union said there were “more practical, more effective” ways to secure the APEC summit even if the PCSO remained at the PICC as the agency occupied only a small portion of the secretariat building.
The SEU also noted the transfer was the second within four years under the Aquino’s administration. The PCSO transferred to the PICC from its original office in the Quezon Institute compound on E. Rodriguez Sr. Avenue in Quezon City in 2010.
“It is sad to say that employees, officials and even patients and sweepstakes agents still feel the negative effects of our departure from the Quezon Institute in our operations and transactions, for which the PCSO had to expend more or less P75 million,” the SEU’s ad in Filipino read.
Rojas denied that the latest transfer would affect the charity beneficiaries, pointing out that the PCSO charity assistance department would remain at its present location at the Lung Center of the Philippines in Quezon City.
“Plans to build a permanent PCSO building on its property on San Marcelino Street, Manila, are already underway,” Rojas added.
On Friday, Judge Monique Quisumbing-Ignacio of Mandaluyong Regional Trial Court Branch 209 denied the SEU’s application for a 72-hour TRO to stop the implementation of the PCSO board’s decision to transfer the PCSO main office.
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