President-elect Rodrigo Duterte publicly offered four Cabinet positions, including secretary of the Department of Labor and Employment, to the Communist Party of the Philippines. Referring to the CPP, he said “they are the most vigilant group in the Philippines about labor.”
For our part, we would welcome the appointment of anyone who is genuinely pro-worker, nationalist, and progressive to the Labor post. We Filipino workers have been suffering for so long, we need all the help we can get, including an ally or even allies at the Labor Department.
We hope that the appointee would back workers’ demands for a National Minimum Wage in the amount of P750 per day, for an end to contractualization, for respect for workers’ right to unionize and strike, and for the upholding of workplace safety and health standards.
Welcoming the appointment of such an individual to the Labor post does not in any way mean that we will pin our hopes on him or her. Given the systemic nature of the exploitation, oppression and repression of workers, unity and collective action are the most potent weapons of workers in changing their condition.
Reference: Jerome Adonis, KMU secretary-general, 0999-4499794