20 September 2013
Gie Relova 0915-2862555
Militant Labor doubts Sotto’s 14th month pay bill,
Calls him a publicity stuntman
Labor group Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP) casted a bundle of doubts at the proposed Senate bill 1645 or the 14th month pay bill filed by Senator Tito Sotto yesterday.
“Sotto is not a neophyte politician nor is he a known populist in all his years in politics for him to have illusions that his bill be passed into law knowing that he may earn ire of employers, he shall not betray his capitalist class interests. So why does he propose a mandatory 14th month pay for all employees in both the public and private sectors, his intention is to bribe the people into calming down after the much-publicized pork barrel scam where his colleagues have been implicated and charged,” said Gie Relova, BMP regional Secretary General for the National Capital Region and Rizal.
Relova was quick to added that, “Technically, Senate bill 1645 once a law could be easily implemented for the employees in the public sector because it would just be a matter of allotting public funds for such, but in the private sector, it’s a whole different story. It’s not that we see no significance in Sotto’s proposal but it simply not grounded and applicable to all rank and file employees in both public and private sector”.
However, the BMP acknowledged that the content of Sotto’s explanatory note in Senate bill 1645, Sotto being the first public official to recognize that the recent ten peso wage increase for workers in Metro Manila is measly, not enough to cover basic necessities due to sharp price increases of commodities and the dire need of extra earnings to cover school and medical expenses.
“Better yet, we urge Sotto to file a bill that will scrap the value added tax in all basic commodities. That would be more realistic and applicable than his mandatory 14th month pay proposal, the labor leader pitched.
“If indeed Sotto is sincere to provide the workers with an economic cushion, we advise him to join us in pressuring his fellow senators into voting in favor of the bill by joining us in the parliament of the streets, be the true champion of wage-earners and not the publicity-stuntman reputation that he has acquired in his years in politics, Relova concluded.