Uring Manggagawa, Hukbong Mapagpalaya!

Sosyalismo ang Lunas! Ibagsak ang mapang-api't masibang kapitalistang sistema! Manggagawa sa Lahat ng Bansa, Magkaisa!

Huwebes, Disyembre 15, 2016

To demand abolition of contractualization: Red Workers march from DOLE to Mendiola

PRESS RELEASE
December 15, 2016
Manggagawang Sosyalista (MASO)
Contact person: Leody de Guzman 09205200672

To demand abolition of contractualization:
Red Workers march from DOLE to Mendiola

HUNDREDS of workers from the socialist alliance Manggagawang Sosyalista (MASO), comprised of militant and anti-capitalist “Red unions” assembled today at the labor department offices in Intramuros, Manila before marching to Mendiola to press for the abolition of all forms of contractualization, not just the much-hated “endo or 5-5-5 employment scheme”.

Sec. Bello wants a Department of Labor and Employers

At the workers program in Intramuros, Lino Brin, MASO chairperson and president of the Pag-asa Steel union said, “The workers call on DOLE Secretary Silvestre Bello to take the sides of the workers rather than adopt a flimsy seemingly neutral stance on the nefarious employment scheme that has led to a cheap and docile labor force”.

“The so-called win-win solution proposed by the trade department and echoed by Secretary Bello seeks to regularize workers at their contractors rather than to the principals who utilize contracting and subcontracting arrangements to replace regular employees with cheaper contractual workers,” he added.

Brin explained, “Bello should act, not just as the alter-ego of President Duterte who has promised to stop contractualization during the electoral campaign but as the representative of labor, which is recognized by the 1987 Constitution as the “primary social economic force” and should be granted „full protection by the State‟. He should leave the DTI Secretary to be the champion of investors. From the last time we check, the DOLE is not named “department of labor and employers”.

Abolition of Contractualization: A Promise Undelivered

At around noon, the workers proceeded to march to Mendiola via Quezon and Recto Avenues. At the march, MASO vice chair Ding Villasin of Socialista asserted, “President Duterte rode on the crest of the people‟s anger towards elitist democracy that was restored after EDSA 1986. Part of his electoral rhetoric was his harsh words against abusive employers who employ contractual workers in order to cheapen their labor costs. Yet, after several months in office, no stone was unturned. The abolition of contractualization remains an undelivered campaign promise.

She furthered, “If President Duterte was able to enact „freedom of information‟ for the Executive branch. We challenge him to abolish contractualization in the same branch, to which he has full control of, as Chief Executive. After all, the Philippine government remains as the country‟s number one employer of contractual workers”.

Nasaan ang Pagbabago?

At Mendiola, Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP) chair Leody de Guzman declared, “Before the year closes, we fear that both the DTI and DOLE will railroad the passage of the so-called win-win solution at both houses of the legislative.

“To inflict another wound to the already injured working class would transform the public sentiment, from that which passively seeks the change promised during the May elections to that of a labor-led independent movement of the people that would actively pursue social change and meaningful reforms, not from above but from below,” de Guzman concluded. #

Sabado, Oktubre 22, 2016

Duterte’s defense of cop who rammed protesters itself an act of violence against the people

Duterte’s defense of cop who rammed protesters itself an act of violence against the people

This week, we watched with horror as a police officer repeatedly and brazenly rammed scores of protesters in broad daylight in front of hundreds of people. We gasped at the sight of men lying under a police van, about to be run over. We witnessed how heavily-armed cops truncheoned water-cannoned, and beat up protesters It was the most violent dispersals we have seen in years.

The least that the President could have said was:

“I extend my solidarity to all those who were hurt. I strongly denounce the violence committed by the police. What they did was will not be tolerated under this government. I reprimand and I will move to file charges against the police officers who—as numerous video reports clearly showed—used disproportionate force against the protesters and violated their right to protest.”

Instead, after two days of silence while the rest of us boiled with anger and demanded justice, the President has instead chosen to act as a lawyer for the police.

Instead of saying the only thing that must be said in the face of what happened—-i.e. that the violence was unacceptable—he instead echoed the line of those who have chosen to justify the cop’s unjustifiable actions. More than that, he even invited the cop to Malacanang “for coffee.”

We at the Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino are not entirely surprised by this response: This, after all, is the same President who has repeatedly said that he will protect and pardon any cop accused of committing human rights violations, who has said that he is “happy to slaughter” more than 3,000 criminals, and who wants to bury Marcos—the dictator who ran over the lives of thousands—as a “hero.”

But, while not surprising, his response is still shocking and unacceptable. By choosing to lawyer for the cops and refusing to condemn their blatant abuse of power, Duterte is in effect telling cops: “It’s OK to ram protesters. You will just be ‘investigated’ and invited to have coffee with the President. And he is in effect telling us: “Don’t count on the police not to run you over in case you decide to fight for your rights.”

As commander-in-chief, the President bears command-responsibility for the shocking violence that happened this week. He certainly did not create the climate of impunity that now reigns in our country. But by repeatedly shielding abusive cops and now refusing to condemn the shocking violence they had just committed, he has certainly further reinforced it—encouraging many other cops to think they really can get away with attempted murder.


We reiterate our demand for justice and we call for accountability—not just from the cops, but also from the President himself.

Labor warns Duterte of Rasputins in his cabinet

Labor warns Duterte of Rasputins in his cabinet

Socialist group Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP) expressed grave concern that several members of the cabinet are actively working against the fulfillment of the economic reforms vowed by President Rodrigo Duterte himself.

Days ago, the government’s so-called economic managers ganged-up and rejected the P125 national wage increase proposal, that according to them would push inflation rates to 9.7 percent and spike unemployment by 1.2 percent

The group identified Secretaries Ramon Lopez, Ernesto Pernia, Benjamin Diokno and Silvestre Bello of the trade, socioeconomic planning, budget, and labor departments respectively as ‘obstacles’ to the realization of the president’s wishes that the BMP said “could have made positive impacts in the lives of millions of ordinary folks”.

“The alter egos of the president in the economic cluster are clearly on the opposite side of their superior and the heavily taxed ordinary folks who pay for their salaries. The secretaries have been consistently active in countering measures that the president has explicitly declared. More importantly, they are not only defying the president’s orders but betraying the trust between him and the nation,” the group’s spokesperson, Attorney Luke Espiritu said.

Among the economic reforms that the secretaries have opposed despite the president’s open support, according to Espiritu is the abolition of all forms of contractual employment, the establishment of a national wage board, a substantial wage increase for the public and private sector as well as the ban on land conversion.

He also accused the cabinet officials of “poisoning the mind” of the president into withdrawing his promises and to fear mongering.

“If they are not fulfilling the wishes of the president or that of the taxpayers, then whose interests are they working for, Espiritu inquired.

BMP fears that other measures that will substantially raise the quality of life of millions living below the poverty line will receive the similar fate as the wage increase proposal.

He likewise reminded the officials that, “It is the overwhelming support of working class that catapulted Duterte to power for they believed that he can affect change they seek. This government must serve the interests of the many and not of the elite”.

“With the way things are going and not unless they are removed from their posts immediately”, Espiritu warned that the recently issued Executive Order No. 5, adopting the “Ambisyon 2040”, a long-term development plan aimed at tripling Filipinos’ per capita income to $11,000 in 24 years’ time “will remain to be a bureaucratic pipedream”.

“If the President really sides with the overburdened workers then he must on guard at all times from his subordinates and terminate them at the smallest infraction they commit,” Espiritu asserted.


The group, last week demanded the president to fire trade Secretary Lopez for his efforts to block the abolition of all forms of contractualization.#

Miyerkules, Oktubre 19, 2016

President Duterte must condemn and punish cops who attacked protesters

President Duterte must condemn and punish cops who attacked protesters

We at the Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino condemn the violent dispersal of the nonviolent protests of indigenous peoples belonging to the newly formed Sandugo alliance at the US embassy today and at Camp Aguinaldo yesterday.

Over fifty of our brothers and sisters were hurt when the police and the military used disproportionate force to break up their protest. Many were injured when a police vehicle repeatedly rammed the crowd of unarmed protesters.



This is shocking and unacceptable under any circumstances. But it is even more intolerable under a government that has promised to champion the rights of indigenous peoples and other oppressed classes, under a President who claims to be the first ‘leftist’ or ‘socialist’ President of the country.

As commander-in-chief of the country’s police and military, President Rodrigo Duterte has command responsibility over the state’s repressive forces. As such, he too is ultimately responsible for these forces’ actions.

To prove that he is committed to upholding our freedom to assemble and protest and to demonstrate that he supports our indigenous sisters’ and brothers’ struggle for their rights, he must immediately and publicly castigate the military and police officials responsible for this crackdown.

At the very least, he must immediately order disciplinary actions against—and if need be fire—Franklin Kho, the driver of the police vehicle that rammed the group of protesters and Marcelino Pedrozo, the officer who ordered the violent dispersal.

Any hesitation or refusal on his part to strongly denounce this shocking use of force will only further intensify the reigning climate of impunity that he has further fanned with his repeated pronouncements that he will protect and pardon all police officers accused of human rights violations.



It is this climate of impunity that is already leading officers of the law to think they can get away with anything—even attempted murder in front of cameras.


The struggle of the indigenous peoples is inseparable from our struggle as workers. An attack on them is an attack on us all.

Linggo, Oktubre 16, 2016

All Senators’ bills fail to challenge contractualization

All Senators’ bills fail to challenge contractualization

Below is the position paper on the Senate bills on contractualization and security of tenure of workers issued by the Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino National Executive Committe on October 13, 2016:

The Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP) welcomes various initiatives by lawmakers to address contractualization and other controversies regarding job security, in the form of legislative proposals to address a problem, which has long been branded by the organized labor movement as a scourge on labor rights and welfare.

But all the proposals, particularly Senate Bills 217 (Hontiveros), 174 (Aquino), 117 (Pimentel), 302 (Zubiri), 329 (Ejercito), 1061 (Poe), and 1116 (Villanueva), fail to address the legal basis for contractualization; no other than Articles 106 to 109 of the Labor Code, which pertains to contracting and subcontracting agreements.

As a workers’ organization, we are not composed of lawyers but of trade unionists who are day-to-day practitioners of laws on labor relations. But we all still know that provisions on job contracting undermine Article 280 of the said code, which states that regular employees are those who perform “usually necessary or desirable” in the normal operations of a business.

Articles 106 to 109 provides the loophole for the so-called “principals” in these trilateral agreements to use contractors and subcontractors that provide cheaper and more docile workers to carry out work that should be performed by their regular employees.

These provisions not only obfuscate employee-employer relationships. In the processes of union building, workers become victims of finger-pointing between principals and the labor agencies on who should negotiate with the newly-formed union regarding wages, benefits, and work conditions.

More so, these provisions reinforce the capitalist blackmail of “work or starve”, as the threat of unemployment constantly hovers, like Damocles’ sword, on contractual workers who could be fired anytime by simply terminating their employment contracts.

Contractualization, legalized by Articles 106 to 109 of the Labor Code, is tantamount to cheap and docile labor. It is a problem that affects millions, especially if we include the families who rely on casual workers for their daily sustenance and upkeep.

According to the May 2016 Labstat Updates of the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), based on the 2013/2014 Integrated Survey on Labor and Employment, out of a total of 4.472 million workers in firms with twenty (20) or more employees, 1.336 million (29.87%) are non-regular workers. This data does not include those employed in small and micro establishments, which comprise more than 90% of employers in the country.

If the 1.336 million contractuals in large firms provide for the needs of a family of five, we have 6.68 million Filipinos who are affected by low wages and the lack of job security due to contractualization!

Hence, the BMP believes that only a bill that would  repeal Articles 106 to 109 and the prohibit  contracting of “usually necessary or desirable” work, pursuant to Article 280 of the Labor Code would actually begin to bring an end to contractualization. Employment of contractual labor, in order to depress wages and deny regular status to workers should be regarded as a criminal offense.

Such harsh penalties, as proposed, are guided by state policies enshrined in the Constitution. Labor, states Article 2, Section 18, is the “primary social economic force”. Because labor should enjoy primacy over non-human inputs in production and commerce, the charter orders the state to provide “FULL PROTECTION to labor” (Article 13, Section 3, emphasis ours).

The State should guarantee workers their immutable rights in the work place – a fitting tribute to their undervalued contribution to economic development. It is hence but appropriate to treat the deprivation of the workers’ due, their basic entitlements and social protection as criminal transgressions which must not be countenanced by the State.

Indeed, the State owes a ballooning social debt to workers who should, as a matter of Constitutional mandate, be entitled to living wage, participation in decision-making processes affecting their rights and benefits, unhampered self-organization, among others.

Hence, the BMP challenges Congress to tread the right direction, consistent with this mandate, by plugging the legal loopholes that permit contractualization and the further detriment of labor rights and welfare.

Ending contractualization, which has been declared as a policy by no less than President Rodrigo Roa Duterte himself, is a step in this rightful course.

End contractualization now!


Uphold the right of workers to security of tenure!

Biyernes, Oktubre 14, 2016

BMP to Duterte: Fire Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez now



Duterte: Fire Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez now



During the election campaign, President Rodrigo Duterte won the hearts of many workers when he promised to immediately end “contractualization,” or the practice of not giving workers the wages and benefits they should receive under the law by hiring them as “contractual” rather than regular workers.



Then, during his inaugural speech, President Duterte said that his government will be guided in part by former US President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s statement that, “The test of government is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide for those who have little.”
Today, one person in the President’s Cabinet has gone out of his way to prevent the President from fulfilling his campaign promise and from passing the test that Roosevelt set.

Since he assumed office, Department of Trade and Industry Secretary Ramon Lopez has consistently opposed measures to end contractualization that we at the Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino, along with other labor groups in the country, have been demanding.



Recently, Lopez even championed the so-called “win-win” but in fact win-lose solution that purportedly seeks a middle-ground between capitalists and workers but in fact again ultimately harms the interests of workers since it will continue to force them to live a life of precarity and near-destitution while allowing the rich to earn more profits and live a life of luxury on the back of contractual workers.



Yesterday, he again spoke out to defend contractualization by saying that ending it would make the country less attractive to foreign investors by removing their “flexibility”—as if “flexibility” for investors has not come and will not come at the expense of the well-being of Filipino workers.

At every step of the way, then, Lopez and his department has represented not the interests of Filipino workers but of capitalists—Filipino and foreign. He fails the test that Roosevelt set because he wants to “add more to the abundance of those who have much” rather than “provide for those who have little.”

In so doing, he is challenging and defying President Duterte himself since the President has said that he wants to “provide for those who have little” and he has promised to end contractualization.

This, then, is an important moment for the President—another early test forcing him to choose whose side he will take and whose interests he will protect.



If the President really cares about Filipino workers, if he really wants to to “provide for those who have little,” then he should match his rhetoric with action and do what needs to be done: he should immediately fire those in his Cabinet who favor contractualization.

More than this, he should immediately take steps needed to end labor flexibilization once and for all by: 1) certifying as urgent – and mobilizing all his party mates to pass – a bill to amend Articles 106 to 109 of the Labor Code in order to prohibit the contracting and subcontracting of “usually necessary or desirable” work in the normal operations of a business, which should be performed by regular employees, in line with Article 280 of said law; 2) revising the BMBE law so as to remove the exemptions to labor standards compliance of small and micro establishments, which comprise more than 90% of the employers’ sector; 3) repealing DOLE’s DO 18-A and issuing a new order which reviews all existing subcontracting arrangements and cancels those that encroach upon the duties and functions, which should done by regular employees; 4) actually prosecuting employers that practice contractualization, starting with the Sys, the Ayalas, the Gokongweis and others.

Otherwise, if he allows the pro-contractualization Lopez to stay in his Cabinet and if he does not carry out all these steps immediately, it will become harder and harder for us not to confirm what many of us have long suspected but wanted the President to refute:


That he did not really mean what he said when he said he would end contractualization, that he does not really care for all Filipinos but just for his fellow elites, and that he will not really bring about real change—just like all his predecessors.

Workers group challenges Duterte to fire pro-contractualization Trade Secretary

Workers group challenges Duterte to fire pro-contractualization Trade Secretary

Socialist workers’ group Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP) today called on President Rodrigo Duterte to fire his Trade and Industry Secretary Ramon Lopez.

Lopez has been defying and contradicting the President’s own campaign promise to end the practice of contractualization so the President must remove him from office if he is still serious about fulfilling his promise, BMP said.

The group was reacting to Lopez’s most recent statement saying contractualization will only scare away foreign investors.

“Since he assumed office, trade Secretary Ramon Lopez has consistently opposed measures to end contractualization,” the group noted in its statement.

“At every step of the way, Lopez has represented and defended not the interests of Filipino workers but of capitalists—Filipino and foreign. He fails the test that the President set because he wants to “add more to the abundance of those who have much” rather than “provide for those who have little,” the group added, quoting the President’s inaugural speech.

Expressing frustration at the lack of progress in eliminating contractualization, the group said the President needs to do more to demonstrate his commitment to workers by firing Lopez.

“This is an important moment for the President—another early test by forcing him to choose whose side he will take and whose interests he will protect.

If the President really cares about Filipino workers, if he really wants to “provide for those who have little,” as he said in his inaugural speech, then he should match his rhetoric with action and do what needs to be done: he should immediate fire those in his Cabinet who favor contractualization.”

In addition, the group called on the President to take concrete steps needed to end labor flexibilization. This include: 1) certifying as urgent – and mobilizing all his party mates to pass – a bill to amend Articles 106 to 109 of the Labor Code in order to prohibit the contracting and subcontracting of “usually necessary or desirable” work in the normal operations of a business, which should be performed by regular employees, in line with Article 280 of said law; 2) revising the BMBE law so as to remove the exemptions to labor standards compliance of small and micro establishments, which comprise more than 90% of the employers’ sector; 3) repealing DOLE’s DO 18-A and issuing a new order which reviews all existing subcontracting arrangements and cancels those that encroach upon the duties and functions which should done by regular employees.


Finally, the group challenged the President to actually prosecute employers that practice contractualization, starting with the country’s richest families such as Sys, the Ayalas, the Gokongweis and others.

Huwebes, Oktubre 13, 2016

Duterte’s foreign policy remains subservient, not independent

Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino
PRESS RELEASE

Duterte’s foreign policy remains subservient, not independent

President Duterte's recent pronouncements regarding the country's relationship with the United States, China, and Russia does not signal an "independent foreign policy."

While the President’s criticism of our unequal relationship with the US is, of course welcome, the President himself has made it clear that he has threatened to break our subservient and mendicant relationship with the US only because the US officials have criticized the President's brutal "war on drugs."

This in itself does not constitute "independence."

Independence does not mean having the freedom to, in the President’s words, "happily slaughter" thousands of drug pushers or dependents. Independence does not mean renouncing our duties and obligations to humanity as responsible members of the international community.

Secondly, despite his repeated threats and bluster, the President has not actually abrogated the Mutual Defense Treaty, the Visiting Forces Agreement, the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement, and other onerous deals that constitute the basis of our unequal and mendicant relationship with the US.

Despite his provocative words, he and his alter egos have repeatedly backtracked on his announcements that the Philippines will no longer conduct military exercises or cut our ties with the US altogether.

Clearly, if the President were serious about breaking with the US, he would have set the ball rolling for the repeal of the treaties mentioned earlier and stuck to his word regarding the military exercises.

But the fact that the President has not done so only lends credence to our fears that, first, he is only instrumentalizing legitimate concerns about our unequal relationship with the US in order to obscure and delegitimize criticisms of his violent, anti-poor, and ineffective “war on drugs”; and that, second, he is merely trying to extract even more concessions from the US while appearing to be critical of the US--just like what the former dictator Marcos did in the past.

Finally, we do not believe that the President favors an independent foreign policy because he only seeks to replace the “alliance” with the US with an alliance with other rising powers, namely China and Russia. Indeed, in line with this, he has even announced that the government would not press the Philippines' claim to the disputed Scarborough Shoal.

Instead of signaling an 'independent foreign policy,' this actually signals the beginning of yet another era of subservience--only this time, to a different or to a more varied set of masters.

For not only is China's commitment to human rights and international law questionable at best, China has also adamantly opposed just and peaceful solutions to the disputes in the region.

In this context, Duterte's refusal to even discuss the country's claim to the Scarborough Shoal is tantamount to sending China the message that it can just use its might and throw its weight around to bully everyone else into submission.

This will not only undermine efforts to arrive at a just and peaceful settlement to the dispute, such as proposals for equitably sharing the resources of the disputed area among the region's peoples, it could also effectively lock in the Philippines to a subordinate position vis-a-vis China.

Instead of breaking with the past and inaugurating a new era in our relations with other countries, then, Duterte seems to be paving the way for more of the same: Rather than independence, we see subservience; rather than sovereignty, we discern surrender.

In order to achieve real independence, we demand, among others, the immediate abrogation of the MDT, the VFA and he EDCA. We demand peaceful but just solutions to the disputes in the region. And we demand equal relations with all countries based on the spirit of genuine international brotherhood, economic cooperation, and mutual benefit.

Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino
Contact persons:
Leody de Guzman, BMP President @ 0920-5200672
Atty. Luke Espiritu, BMP Spokesperson @ 0933-0417125

Miyerkules, Oktubre 12, 2016

Duterte’s foreign policy remains subservient, not independent

Duterte’s foreign policy remains subservient, not independent

President Duterte’s recent pronouncements regarding the country’s relationship with the United States, China, and Russia do not signal an “independent foreign policy.”

While the President’s criticism of our subservient and mendicant relationship with the US is of course welcome, the President himself has made it clear that his criticisms were only a response to US officials’ concerns about the President’s brutal “war on drugs.”

This in itself does not constitute “independence.”

Independence does not mean having the freedom to, in the President’s words, “happily slaughter” thousands of drug pushers or dependents. Independence does not mean renouncing our duties and obligations to humanity as responsible members of the international community.

Secondly, despite his repeated threats and bluster, the President has not actually abrogated the Mutual Defense Treaty, the Visiting Forces Agreement, the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement, and other onerous deals that constitute the basis of our unequal and mendicant relationship with the US. 

Despite his provocative words, he and his alter egos have repeatedly backtracked on his announcements that the Philippines will no longer conduct military exercises or cut our ties with the US altogether.

Clearly, if the President were serious about breaking with the US, he would have set the ball rolling for the repeal of the treaties mentioned earlier and stuck to his word regarding the military exercises.

But the fact that the President has not done so only lends credence to our fears that, first, he is only instrumentalizing legitimate concerns about our unequal relationship with the US in order to obscure and delegitimize criticisms of his violent, anti-poor, and ineffective “war on drugs”; and that, second, he is merely trying to extract even more concessions from the US while appearing to be critical of imperialism.

Finally, we do not believe that the President actually favors an independent foreign policy because he only seeks to replace the “alliance” with the US with an alliance with other rising powers, namely China and Russia. Indeed, in line with this, he has even announced that the government would not press the Philippines’ claim to the disputed Scarborough Shoal.

Instead of signalling an ‘independent foreign policy,’ this actually signals the beginning of yet another era of subservience–only this time, to a different or to a more varied set of masters.

For not only is China’s commitment to human rights and international law questionable at best, China has also adamantly opposed just and peaceful solutions to the disputes in the region.

In this context, Duterte’s refusal to even discuss the country’s claim to the Scarborough Shoal is tantamount to sending China the message that it can just use its might and throw its weight around to bully everyone else into submission.

This will not only undermine efforts to arrive at a just and peaceful settlement to the dispute, such as proposals for equitably sharing the resources of the disputed area among the region’s peoples, it could also effectively lock in the Philippines to a subordinate position vis-a-vis China.

Instead of breaking with the past and inaugurating a new era in our relations with other countries, then, Duterte seems to be paving the way for more of the same: Rather than independence, we see subservience; rather than sovereignty, we discern surrender.


In order to achieve real independence, we demand, among others, the immediate abrogation of the MDT, the VFA and he EDCA. We demand peaceful but just solutions to the disputes in the region. And we demand equal relations with all countries based on the spirit of genuine international brotherhood,  cooperation, and mutual benefit.

Biyernes, Hulyo 1, 2016

Security of Tenure, Workers’ Rights and Welfare are non-negotiable

PRESS STATEMENT
July 1, 2016
Leody de Guzman (09205200672)
National President, Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP)

Security of Tenure, Workers’ Rights and Welfare are non-negotiable:
No to a mere cap to ‘endo’
Yes to “Change is Coming”

In reaction to an earlier pronouncement by incoming Labor Secretary for limiting the employment of contractual labor to twenty percent (20%), the Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP) would like to remind Silvestro Bello III that the workers’ rights and welfare are non-negotiable. 

We likewise oppose the blackmail line of “contractual employment or hunger by joblessness” that are issued by employers’ groups on the issue of contractualization. 

Our position is based on the following premises:

1) Placing a cap on contractual labor is not in the Labor Code, which clearly states that “usually and necessary labor” in the operations of a business should be performed by a regular employee (Article 280). It defines usually and necessary as the type of work performed for at least a year, whether continuous or broken. 

2) Bello’s proposal is likewise contrary and violative to the Constitution. While seemingly enabling the Constitutional right to security of tenure to a sizeable majority (80%) of the workforce, it institutionalizes its denial to two out of ten workers (20%). Where is the so-called “equal protection of law” in this patently anti-labor scheme?

3) The proposed cap on contractual labor is contrary to the “change is coming” mandate of the incoming Duterte administration. We want change. We want a labor market where workers’ rights and welfare are not threatened by contractualization. We expect it from a government that would side with the labor against capital, with the oppressed against the oppressors. Fence-sitting would not lead to change, it is business-as-usual for the unjust status quo. Bello must be reminded that the Duterte presidency rode on the crest of the people’s clamor for change by launching an all-out tirade against social ills, especially the lackluster and bungling elitist administration of Noynoy Aquino.

4) Putting an end to contractualization is not just a legal question on the Constitutional right to job security but a life-and-death issue for workers are forced to become cheap and docile due to the threat of unemployment, and in order for capital to gain higher profit margins. It is nothing but shameless and callous profiteering

Meanwhile, we condemn employers’ groups that justify contractualization by saying that it contributes to job generation. Your condescending excuses mock the dignity of labor. You are not in the business of providing us jobs to feed our families. Accumulation and competition are your masters. In their service, you have installed this regime of precarious and contractual work, that imposed starvation wages on hardworking Filipinos.

Mr. Sergio Ortiz of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) has correctly observed that combatting contractualization would be hard due to the high levels of unemployment. Of course, cut-throat competition among workers to sell their labor-power persists as long as the unemployed masses lines up at the factory gates. But it is precisely the reason why the Philippine state – abiding by its Constitutional mandate to provide full protection to labor – should uphold the interests of the workers lest they fall prey to the blackmail line of “low wages or hunger” by exploitative employers. 

Hence, we appeal to the incoming Duterte administration to be true to its mandate by implementing the harshness of the law on abusive capitalists in the same way that it now threatens the crime lords of the illegal drug trade. For an Executive Order against contractualization! Prohibit the contracting out of “usually necessary and desirable work”! Amend Articles 106 to 109 of the Labor Code! #

Seguridad sa Trabaho, Karapatan at Kagalingan ng Manggagawa ay Hindi Naaareglo:

Hindi sa simpleng panakip lang sa ‘endo’
OO sa “Pagdating ng Pagbabago” 

Bilang tugon sa maagang pahayag ng papasok na Kalihim ng Paggawa sa paglilimita ng pagtatrabaho ng kontraktwal na paggawa sa dalawampung bahagdan (20%), nais ipaalala ng Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP) kay Silvestre Bello III na hindi naaareglo ang karapatan at kagalingan ng manggagawa.

Gayundin naman, tinututulan namin ang linyang panggigipit na “trabahong kontraktwal o kagutuman sa kawalan ng trabaho” na ipinahayag ng mga pangkat ng kapitalista hinggil sa isyu ng kontratwalisasyon.

Ang aming tindig ay batay sa sumusunod na mga kadahilanan:

1) Ang paglalagay ng panakip sa kontraktwal na paggawa ay wala sa Kodigo ng Paggawa, kung saan malinaw na nakasulat ang “karaniwan at kinakailangang paggawa” sa pagpapatakbo ng isang negosyo ay dapat gampanan ng isang regular na empleyado (Artikulo 280). Ipinaliliwanag nito ang karaniwan at kinakailangan bilang tipo ng paggawang ginagampanan sa loob man lang ng isang taon, ito man ay tuluyan o patlang-patlang.

2) Gayunman, ang panukala ni Bello ay salungat at labag sa Saligang Batas. Habang nakikitang nagagampanan ang Konstitusyonal na karapatan sa seguridad sa trabaho sa malawak na mayorya (80 bahagdan) ng pwersa ng mga nagtatrabaho, itinatatag nito ang pagkakaila sa dalawa sa sampung manggagawa (20%). Nasaan ang tinatawag na “pantay na karapatan sa batas” sa ganitong malinaw na pakanang laban sa paggawa?

3) Ang panukalang panakip sa kontraktwal na paggawa ay salungat sa mandatong “parating na ang pagbabado ng parating na administrasyong Duterte. Nais namin ay pagbabago. Nais namin ang isang merkado ng paggawa kung saan ang karapatan at kagalingan ng manggagawa ay hindi pinagbabantaan ng kontraktwalisasyon. Ang inaasahan namin sa isang pamahalaan ay ang pagpanig nito sa paggawa laban sa puhunan, sa panig ng inaapi laban sa mga mang-aapi. Ang pangingitlog sa bangko ay hindi tutungo sa pagbabago, ito’y karaniwang-pagnenegosyo-lang para sa mga di-makatarungang naghaharing kairalan. Dapat paalalahanan si Bello na ang panguluhang Duterte ay nakatungtong sa gulugod ng panawagang pagbabago ng sambayanan sa pamamagitan ng paglulunsad ng panlahatang panunuligsa laban sa mga sakit ng lipunan, lalo na ang  walang kinang at padaskul-daskol na elitistang administrasyon ng Noynoy Aquino.

4) Ang pagwawakas sa kontraktwalisasyon ay hindi lamang isang legal na usapin ng Konstitusyonal na karapatan sa seguridad sa trabaho subalit isang usaping buhay-at-kamatayan para sa mga manggagawang natutulak na maging mura at masunurin dahil sa banta ng kawalan ng trabaho, at upang makakuha ng mas mataas na tubo ang puhunan. Wala ito kundi kawalanghiyaan at kawalang-habag na pagkakamal ng tubo.

Samantala, kinukundena namin ang mga grupo ng kapitalistang binibigyang matuwid ang kontraktwalisasyon sa pamamagitan ng pagsasabing nakapag-aambag ito sa pagkakaroon ng trabaho. Ang pagpapakumbabang pagdadahilan ninyo ay mapangutya sa dignidad ng paggawa. Wala kayo sa katwirang bigyan kami ng trabaho upang mapakain ang aming pamilya. Ang pangangamkam at kumpetisyon ang inyong mga amo. Sa pagsisilbi sa kanila, inilagay ninyo ang rehimeng ito ng trabahong mabuway at kontraktwal, na iginigiit ang sahod na nakagugutom sa mga matitiyagang Pilipino.

Wastong naobserbahan ni Ginoong Sergio Ortiz ng Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) na ang pagbaka sa kontraktwalisasyon ay mahirap dahil sa taas ng antas ng kawalan ng trabaho. Siyempre, ang mga mapanakal na kumpetisyon sa mismong mga manggagawa upang ibenta ang kanilang lakas-paggawa ay nagpapatuloy habang parami ng parami ang mga walang trabahong manggagawa sa tarangkahan ng mga pabrika. Ngunit ito ang tiyak na rason kung bakit ang estado ng Pilipinas – na sumusunod sa mandatong Konstitusyonal nito na bigyan ng buong proteksyon ang paggawa – ay nararapat panindigan ang interes ng mga manggagawa kung hindi’y mabibiktima sila ng palyadong linyang “mababang sahod o gutom” ng mga mapagsamantalang kapitalista.

Kaya, nananawagan kami sa parating na administrasyong Duterte na maging totoo sa mandato nitong ipatupad ng malupit ang batas hinggil sa mga abusadong kapitalista sa parehong paraan na sa ngayon ay pinagbabantaan ng mga panginoon ng krimen ng mga ilegal na kalakalan ng droga. Para sa isang Batas Ehekutibo laban sa kontraktwalisasyon! Ipagbawal ang pangongontrata ng “paggawang karaniwang kinakailangan at kalugod-lugod”! Amyendahan ang mga Artikulong 106-109 ng Kodigo ng Paggawa! #

Sabado, Abril 2, 2016

Police brutality in Kidapawan condemned, Declare El Nino areas in a state of calamity

Press Statement
01 April 2016

Police brutality in Kidapawan condemned, 
Declare El Nino areas in a state of calamity

SANLAKAS condemns in the strongest terms the barbaric acts inflicted by the police forces as a response to the legitimate and just demands of the Mindanaoan farmers. We hold the Aquino government accountable for unleashing his dogs of war against the hapless peasants.

We demand that entire police unit/s involved in the dispersal relieved, investigated and charged at the soonest possible time.

We also hold accountable the city officials of Kidapawan and the provincial government under Governor Lala Mendoza as well as the national agencies that should have been on top of the situation knowing that the impacts of the El Nino would affect hundreds of thousands if not millions ofpeople.

Firing at unarmed protestors is not only appalling and but also shows how inutile and insensitive our government is to the conditions our farmers who are suffering from water scarcity on a daily basis. While the government is fully aware that the El Nino phenomenon has intensely struck hundreds of thousands of acres of farmlands in Mindanao it did not only prepare for it but it also failed in relieving the farmers of the widespread hunger the climate crisis has caused on thousands of peasant and agricultural workers’ families.

As we share the grief of the victims of police brutality and extend our solidarity with the farmers in Mindanao, SANLAKAS demands from the Aquino government to provide economic relief and declare all EL Nino affected provinces including those in Visayas and Luzon in a state of calamity in order to freeze prices of the most basic commodities and so that the local government may access emergency funds.

We also demand that the climate adaptation efforts of the government expedited in order for the food and water supply crisis checked.

Contact details: 
Atty. Aaron Pedrosa 0927-5924830 
Sanlakas, Secretary General and nominee


Lunes, Marso 21, 2016

Ako'y Manggagawa: Butil ng Buhangin - Dalawang Tula ni Amado V. Hernandez

AKO'Y MANGGAGAWA: BUTIL NG BUHANGIN - DALAWANG TULA NI AMADO V. HERNANDEZ
ni Gregorio V. Bituin Jr.

Dalawang tula ni Ka Amado V. Hernandez, pambansang alagad ng sining sa panitikan, ang inumpisahan niya sa taludtod na ito: "Ako'y manggagawa: butil ng buhangin". Ito'y matatagpuan sa kanyang tulang Bayani na kinatha noong Mayo 1, 1928, at ang Isang Tula sa manggagawa, na nalathala sa pahayagang Pawis noong Hunyo 5, 1946. Dahil sinimulan sa taludtod na iyon, ang kabuuan ng dalawang tula ay lalabindalawahing pantig. 

Ang tulang Bayani, na binubuo ng sampung saknong at bawat saknong ay may anim na taludtod, ay nasa aklat na Isang Dipang Langit, mp. 22-24. Ang tula naman niyang Isang Tula sa Manggagawa, na may walong saknong, ay nasa aklat na Tudla at Tudling, mp. 304-305. Ang unang dalawang saknong ay binubuo ng limang taludtod, habang ang ikatlo hanggang ikawalong saknong ay tig-aanim na taludtod.

Ayon sa talababa ng tulang Bayani: Ang tulang Bayani ay nagwagi sa 30 kalaban sa timpalak-panitik sa Malolos, Bulacan, sa pagdiriwang sa Unang Araw ng Mayo noong 1928. Inampalan: Lope K. Santos, Julian Cruz Balmaceda at IƱigo Ed. Regalado. Ayon kay Senador Recto, ito ang "pinakamahusay na tulang Tagalog sa paksang paggawa."

Ang dalawang tula, bagamat pareho ang unang taludtod ay halos nagkaroon ng bahagyang pagkakaiba sa mga pananalita, bagamat iisa ang nilalaman, ang tungkol sa buhay at kahalagahan ng manggagawa sa ating daigdig. Katunayan, napakaganda ng huling taludtod ng kanyang tulang Bayani: "Taong walang saysay ang di Manggagawa!"

Halina't tunghayan natin ang dalawang tulang ito at namnamin ang masarap na lasa nitong tila pukyutan sa tamis dahil inaalay sa mayorya sa lipunan, ang manggagawa.

BAYANI 
ni Amado V. Hernandez

Ako'y manggagawa: butil ng buhangin
sa daa'y panambak, sa templo'y gamit din;
buhay ko'y sa Diyos utang nga marahil,
ngunit ang palad ko'y utang din sa akin.
Alam ko ang batas: "Tao, manggagaling
sa sariling pawis ang iyong kakanin."

Hubad ang daigdig nang ako'y sumilang
at pikit ang mata ng sangkatauhan:
dahilan sa aki'y kaharia't bayan
ang nangapatayo sa bundok at ilang,
aking pinasikat sa gabi ang araw
at tinanlawan ko ang diwa't ang buhay.

Ako ang nagbangon ng Gresya at Roma,
ako ang nagbagsak sa palalong Troya;
ang mga kamay ko'y martilyo't sandata –
pambuo't panggiba ng anumang pita!
Kung may kayamanan ngayong nakikita,
paggawa ko'y siyang pinuhunan muna!

Ako'y isang haring walang trono't putong,
panginoong laging namamanginoon,
daming pinagpalang binigyan ng milyon
ay ako't ako ring itong pataygutom;
sila ay sa aking balikat tumuntong,
naging Mamo't Nabod ang dati kong ampon!

Sambundok na ginto ang aking dinungkal,
kahi't na kaputol, di binahagihan!
ang aking inani'y sambukiring palay,
nguni't wala akong isaing man lamang!
ang buhay ng iba'y binibigyang-buhay
habang nasa bingit ako ng libingan!

Ang luha ko't dugo'y ibinubong pawa
sa lupang sarili, nguni't nang lumaya,
ako'y wala kahi't sandakot na lupa!
Kung may tao't bayang nangaging dakila,
karaniwang hagda'y akong Manggagawa,
nasa putik ako't sila'y sa dambana!

Kung kaya sumulong ang ating daigdig,
sa gulong ng aking mga pagsasakit;
nilagyan ang tao ng pakpak at bagwis,
madaling nag-akyat-manaog sa langit;
saliksik ang bundok, ang bangin at yungib,
ang kailaliman ng dagat, saliksik!

Ang mga gusali, daan at sasakyan,
ay niyaring lahat ng bakal kong kamay;
sa tuklas kong lakas – langis, uling, bakal,
naghimala itong industria't kalakal;
nguni't lumawak din naman ang pagitan
ng buhay at ari... nasupil ang buhay!

Ang mundo'y malupit: ngayo't ako'y ako,
nakamihasnan nang dustain ng mundo
gayon pa ma'y habang ang tao ay tao,
gawa ang urian kung ano't kung sino;
batong walang ganda'y sangkap ng palasyo,
sanggol sa sabsaba'y naging isang Kristo.

Tuwi na'y wal'in man ako ng halaga,
iyan ay pakanang mapagsamantala;
ang ginto, saan man, ay gintong talaga,
ang bango, takpan man, ay di nagbabawa;
itakwil man ako ng mga nanggaga,
walang magagawang hadlang sa istorya!

Kung di nga sa aki'y alin kayang bagay
ang magkakasigla at magkakabuhay?
Puhunan? Likha ko lamang ang Puhunan!
Bayan? At hindi ba ako rin ang Bayan?
Walang mangyayari pag ako ang ayaw,
mangyayaring lahat, ibigin ko lamang!

Sa wakas, dapat nang ngayo'y mabandila
ang karapatan kong laong iniluha,
ang aking katwiran ay bigyan ng laya
at kung ayaw ninyo'y ako ang bahala
sa aking panata sa pagkadakila...
Taong walang saysay ang di Manggagawa!

Mayo 1, 1928


ISANG TULA SA MANGGAGAWA
ni Amado V. Hernandez

I
Ako'y manggagawa: butil ng buhangin
Sa dagat ng buhay ay masuliranin,
Nguni't ang palad ko'y utang din sa akin!
Sa sariling pawis pinapanggaling
Ang dinadamit ko't aking kinakain.

II
Hubad ang daigdig nang ako'y sumilang
At pikit ang mata ng sangkatauhan,
Dahilan sa aki'y kahariharian
Ang nangapatayo sa bundok at ilang,
Pinapagningning ko ang dating karimlan.

III
At ang kabihasnan ng buong daigdig
Ay bunga ng aking mga pagsasakit
Ang Kapwa ko tao'y binigyan ng bagwis
Upang makalipad hanggang himpapawid!
Utang din sa aking paggawa kung bakit,
Ang pusod ng dagat ay nasasaliksik!

IV
Ang mga gusali, dagat at sasakyan
Ay nalikhang lahat ng bakal kong kamay,
Ang ginto at pilak, ang uling at bakal,
Ay dahil sa akin kung kaya't nabungkal,
Ako'y manggagawa ng maraming bagay
Pangalawang Diyos sa lupang ibabaw.

V
Gayon ma'y malimit dustain ako,
Ang munti'y talagang dustain sa mundo
Subali't ang bakal, hamak ma'y alam kong
Nagagawang baril, gulok, punglo, maso...
Ang buhangi'y sangkap sa isang palasyo't
Ang bato ang siyang haligi ng templo!

VI
Madalas man akong pawalang halaga
Ang uri ko'y hindi mababawasan pa:
Ang ginto saan ma'y napagkikilala,
Ang bango takpan ma'y hindi nagbabawa!
Ako ay bayaning bisig ang sandata,
Ang pawis ko'y lakas, buhay at pag-asa!

VII
Anak pawis akong dukha at maliit,
Ang tahana'y dampa na pawid ang atip,
Nguni't ang dambanang pinakamarikit
Ay utang sa aking matipunong bisig
At ang boong yaman sa silong ng langit
Ay mula sa aking kasipaga't pawis!

VIII
Pagmalasin ninyo! Tila isang anghel
Ng pagkakaisang sa langit nanggaling,
Larawan ng Bayang maganda't mahinhin
Na wala nang gapos ng pagkaalipin,
Liwayway ng layang darating, darating,
At mamamanaag paglipas ng dilim!

Pawis, Hunyo 5, 1946

Ang dalawang tulang ito'y patunay ng maalab na pagmamahal ni Ka Amado V. Hernandez sa mga manggagawang kanyang pinaglingkuran. Bilang isang batikan at iginagalang na lider-manggagawa, matatandaang si Ka Amado ay naging haligi ng Congress of Labor Organizations (CLO), na isang samahan ng manggagawang nagtataguyod ng pagbabagong panlipunan. Noong Mayo 5, 1947, pinangunahan niya ang pinakamalaking welgang bayan noon. Nang maging pangulo siya ng CLO ay pinangunahan niya ang paglulunsad ng malaking pagkilos ng manggagawa noong Mayo 1, 1948.

Mabuhay ang alaala ni Ka Amado V. Hernandez at ang kanyang mga tula para sa kilusang paggawa!

Biyernes, Enero 22, 2016

Militant workers to Congress: Develop a heart and a spine; override the presidential veto on the SSS Pension Hike

PRESS RELEASE
Contact person: Leody de Guzman 09205200672
January 22, 2016

Militant workers to Congress:
Develop a heart and a spine;
override the presidential veto on the SSS Pension Hike

Members of the militant labor group Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP) held a picket at the Batasan gates today to call on lawmakers to override the presidential veto against a P2,000 increase in the monthly pensioners of the Social Security System.

Leody de Guzman, BMP president said, “We call on our legislators to alleviate the hardship of 1.9 million Filipinos who have to barely survive on a measly pension of P1,200 per month at the twilight of their lives.

Have a Heart as People’s Representatives

“If you are truly representatives of the people, you must, at the very least,have a heart to those who dutifully contributed to the social welfare fundin the hope of living decently upon retirement. The current minimum pension of P1,200 is not even half the cost of living of P5,333 per individual,” the labor leader furthered.

Develop a Spine as a Co-Equal Branch of Government

De Guzman clarified, “We appeal to our legislators to develop a spine by collectively standing up as a co-equal branch to the executive department.  Override the presidential veto by garnerning the required two-thirds vote to defend your just and reasonable proposal for a pension hike, lest the people conclude that members of the august halls of Congress are more concerned with their electoral kitty than the welfare of our aging countrymen”.

Reforms to ensure the viability of the P2,000 SSS Pension Hike

The labor leader, who is also the first nominee of the SANLAKAS party-list in the upcoming May elections, asserted that the SSS has sufficient funds to provide for a P2,000 increase in monthly pensions. He added, “especially if it would increase the collection rate from the present 35-38% and by reducing the administrative and operating costs of the social welfare fund. It is the height of injustice that the SSS executives are receiving millions in bonuses despite their obvious inefficiency and lack of regard for the welfare of the millions of its now destitute member-contributors”.

SSS Execu-thieves, Kapalmuks!

At the protest, the BMP, SANLAKAS and Partido Lakas ng Masa (PLM) brought a huge streamer that listed the millions in bonuses given to members of the SSS board, who they described as “execu-thieves”,“walang hiya” (shameless) and “kapalmuks” (thick-skinned, insensitive). #


May 1, 2013 rali

Das Kapital published on 14 Sept 1867

Das Kapital published on 14 Sept 1867

Itigil ang Tanggalan!

Itigil ang Tanggalan!
Disenteng Trabaho para sa Lahat!

kagutuman sa kabila ng kahirapan

kagutuman sa kabila ng kahirapan

Mga tagasunod

Slam Evil, Slam Apec

Slam Evil, Slam Apec
November 1996