Rody tells firms: End ‘endo’ or close shop
VOWING no mercy, President Duterte on Monday threatened to shut down companies engaged in contractualization—the practice of hiring employees for five months in an attempt to circumvent labor laws providing benefits and job security for them.
Speaking to the Malacañang Press Corps for the first time since assuming the presidency, Mr. Duterte lamented a “lackadaisical” attitude among companies in dealing with the issue and urged employers to pay their workers properly and give them the benefits due them.
“Stop contractualization. It will not do good to our country,” he said, warning employers not to wait for authorities to look into their operations.
“Don’t wait for me to catch you because I will be unforgiving,” he said.
“If I find you out, I’ll just simply close your plant. I can always find a thousand reasons to do it, believe me,” said Mr. Duterte, who has promised to end contractualization, a hot issue during the presidential campaign.
Last week, in a move to give substance to the Duterte promise, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III directed regional offices to stop processing applications for third-party labor contractors.
Mr. Duterte said in his press briefing on Monday workers could use the new government 8888 complaint hotline to report employers who are shortchanging them or depriving them of benefits due them.
“I am not trying to scare you but this is my warning. If the government says something, that will be it. Do not wait to commit a wrong. Just obey it,” he added.
The President also warned employers that they would get no sympathy from him if they come to him with sob stories about difficulties in running their operations.
“It could mean a reduction of your corporate profits? Fine, share it to the people … . If you think that you would lose, close shop. You can turn to farming,” he said.
Mr. Duterte rued the plight of employees falling prey to contractualization, a company scheme to hire workers for only five months to avoid their regularization and the payment of more benefits to them.