President Rodrigo Duterte’s supposed signing today (April 16) of an executive order (EO) against labor contractualization will no longer push through, Department of Labor and Employment Secretary Silvestre Bello III told DZRH Monday morning.
Bello said the chief executive was supposed to meet with labor groups Monday afternoon for the supposed EO signing but this was cancelled because Duterte would have an important appointment.
“Mamayang hapon sana pero nakansela, may importanteng lakad ang ating Pangulo,” the DOLE chief said.
Bello said that instead of the President signing the order, Malacañang, the DOLE, and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) were thinking that instead of the President signing the order, they would propose that the President certify as urgent a bill against contractualization currently pending at the Senate and is already passed at the House of Representatives.
“In fact, ang usapan namin ni Executive Secretary (Salvador) Medialdea at saka ni (DTI)Secretary Ramon Lopez na sa halip na pipirmahan ng ating Pangulo ‘yong proposed EO, mukhang ang plano ay, pina-aaralan, baka i-certify na lang as an administration bill para pumasa sa Kongreso. Meron nang pending sa Senado, na-approve na sa Congress, the DOLE chief said.
Asked by DZRH’s Angelo Palmones how soon could Duterte certify the proposed legislation as an urgent administration-backed bill, Bello said, “‘Yon ang hindi ko pa alam [I don’t know yet]. Secretary Medialdea will probably make the recommendation to the President and on the basis of that recommendation, the President may certify.”
Last January, the lower chamber approved on third and final reading House Bill 6908 seeking an end to labor-only contracting.
The bill seeks to amend Article 106 of Presidential Decree 44 titled “contractor” so that whenever an employer enters into a contract with a person for the performance of work, the employees will be paid in accordance with the Labor Code and other related laws.
The “contracting out” of the same work rolled out by the employer would be prohibited under the bill.
Also, under the proposed legislation, the DOLE chief, upon consultation with the National Tripartite Industrial Peace Council, would restrict or prohibit the contracting out of labor to protect the rights of workers established under the Labor Code.