Outraged workers tell Neda execs: Try living on P10K a month
The country’s labor groups have expressed outrage over the National Economic Development Authority’s (Neda) suggestion that a family of five may live with a P10,000 monthly income.
The Associated Labor Unions-Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (ALU-TUCP), Federation of Free Workers (FFW), and Sentro ng mga Nagkakaisa at Progresibong Manggagawa (Sentro) on Wednesday issued separate statements calling out Neda for “insulting” the workers, and that they too should try living with such a meager income.
According to the groups, the Neda said the living standard for a family of five is only P10,000 a month, out of which only P3,834 is needed for food or P127 a day alone.
ALU-TUCP spokesman Alan Tanjusay said that Neda’s argument was “inaccurate and a grave mistake.”
“This amount does not reflect the reality of majority of Filipinos who are poor,” Tanjusay said in a statement, adding that Neda officials should also try to live on P127 a day. “Let’s see if they can live with this amount.”
Likewise, Tanjusay said the living standard for a Filipino family of five should be P1,200 a day, which P400 to P600 a day of the said amount should go to food expenses alone.
Julius Cainglet, vice president of the FFW, lamented that “a well-respected institution would resort to magic just to foster an illusion that we can buck inflation which is at its highest for the past half decade.”
“I’m sure this crazy computation is the same argument they will use to block any legislated wage increase or a wage order from the wage boards that carries a significant wage increase,” Cainglet said in a separate statement.
“Neda is supposed come up with scientific, logical and research-based information to guide policy makers, not act as politicians’ mouthpiece to peddle lies about the economy and what it takes for workers to live a decent life,” he stressed.
In addition, Sentro secretary general Josua Mata said that “if Neda officials believe in their preposterous findings, let them and their families prove it first.”
“We challenge Sec. Ernesto M. Pernia to subject his family to a strict budget of P10,000 a month,” Mata said in a text message to reporters. /je
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