THE Philippines’ largest labor federation refiled its petition for a P470 increase in the daily wage for the National Capital Region (NCR), after the wage board dismissed an earlier filing, citing jurisdiction issues.
In its new wage hike petition, the Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP) removed the term “across-the-board” from its new filing.
The NCR Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board had ruled that it has no authority to impose an across-the-board wage increase.
“In our new petition filed on April 4, we reiterated the same reasons we used in our previous petition. We only removed the term ‘across-the-board,’” TUCP spokesman Alan Tanjusay said by telephone.
The wage board said in its resolution that “an across-the-board wage increase is not within the jurisdiction of the Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board nor authorized” by the wage rationalization law.
The resolution also stated that “the across-the-board wage petition filed [by the TUCP] cannot be given due course.”
The TUCP said in a statement that if the wage board dismisses its petition again, it will keep refiling “as all the computations and arguments in the petition are about an increase in minimum wage.”
“It is grossly unfair for the wage board just to dismiss our petition and choose to ignore the arguments and computations… While it is true that the RTWPB cannot grant an across-the-board wage increase, it has jurisdiction insofar as providing an increase in minimum wage,” TUCP President Raymond Democrito Mendoza said.
The TUCP cited the rising costs of fuel products and other basic commodities as the reason for its previous wage hike petition.
The TUCP has also filed wage hike petitions for the Central Visayas and the Davao region.
Separately, the Department of Labor and Employment’s NCR Regional Director Sarah Buena Mirasol said the regional tripartite wages and productivity board has resolved to consolidate three wage hike petitions seeking between P213 and P250 minimum wage increases for Metro Manila.
Ms. Mirasol, who chairs the wage board, said the three petitions have been consolidated “to expedite the process of wage hike determination.”
“The board received three wage hike petitions and upon review, we have issued a resolution to consolidate all petitions and proceed to public hearings,” she said in a statement.
Ms. Mirasol said the board will seek balance the interests of workers and employers in light of the fallout from the Ukraine crisis, which includes higher prices of oil and other prime commodities. — Kyle Aristophere T. Atienza