By ALDWIN QUITASOL
BAGUIO CITY — The Kilusang Mayo Uno-Cordillera leads the annual commemoration of the International Labor Day with workers from the different places in the region in strengthening the call for the respect of labor and other human rights, and the struggle against anti-people state policies.
According to Anakpawis-Cordillera Spokesperson Michael Cabangon, this year’s commemoration of the International Labor Day, is the renewed call for the passing of the long overdue P125 wage hike Bill pending in the House of Congress.
He said that the demand for a legislated P125 wage increase which started in the late 90’s is long overdue and the workers and their families need this to be realized amidst the continuous rising of prices of basic commodities and services.
The May 1 commemoration will also be a venue for the renewed call to end contractualization. According to Cabangon, they continuer to demand the passage of the House Bill 5110 or the Regular Employment Bill (REB). Said bill will strengthen the rights of the workers and the Filipino people to the security of tenure.
According to the primer of KMU on HB 5110, the right to permanent occupation will be secured through the amendments in the Article 10 of the Presidential Declaration 442 or known as the Labor Code of the Philippines. Cabangon said that deceptive and anti-worker policies will be removed.
KMU stated that it is even clear in the Philippine Constitution that the state shall provide full protection of labor rights locally or abroad, organized or non-organized, and it shall establish full employment and equal employment opportunity for all. Cabangon said that the bill also seeks the protection of workers from being terminated and be transformed to contractual employees.
According to the KMU national office, May 1 commemoration this year will be geared at condemning the administration of President Benigno Aquino III for its failure to work on its promises to end poverty and hunger in the Philippines.
They also denounce Aquino’s administration for its earlier announcements of rejecting the demand for P125 wage hike. KMU dubbed this year’s commemoration as “Araw ng Paniningil at Paglaban!
In a march rally on the main thorough fairs of the city of Baguio, KMU together with the workers and multi-sectoral groups and individuals demand for the scrapping of the Expanded Value-Added Tax and the stop to the overpricing of oil prices by Shell, Petron and Caltex.
The urban poor group Organisasyon dagiti Nakurapay nga Umili ti Syudad-Kalipunan ng Damayang Mahihirap (Ornus-Kadamay) in the said commemoration call for the moratorium to the demolitions of urban poor dwellings and the scrapping of the Urban Development Housing Act of 1992 (UDHA) or the Republic Act 7279, Community Mortgage Program (CMP) and the criticizing of the Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT).
In an earlier interview, Geraldine Duco-Cacho of the Tongtongan Ti Umili (TTU) said that the said policies are not really answering the needs of the poor people as they only create disillusionment among the people that their lives will be okay because of these.
Cabangon said that they will also join the national call to expose and oppose the Oplan Bayanihan of the Aquino government.
According to him, just like the previous government, the present administration uses the Oplan Bayanihan to silence the people especially those who are critical to anti-people policies and projects of the government. # nordis.net