Bello cancels signing of agreement with ECOP amid threats of charges from labor groups

from March 4, 2019 01:00 am to March 4, 2019 01:00 am


By Analou De Vera

The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) said that it canceled the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Employers’ Confederation of the Philippines (ECOP), which could have resulted to the regularization of at least 220,000 employees.


Labor and Employment Secretary Silvestre Bello III, in a press briefing for the Philippine media delegation at the Orchard Hotel in Singapore on April 27, 2018, announces that President Rodrigo Roa Duterte is set to reveal a course of action on the issue concerning the migrant workers in Kuwait. (ROBINSON NIÑAL JR./PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO / MANILA BULLETIN)



Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said that the signing of MOU did not push through.

“The signing did not push through. ECOP’s commitment for the regularization program is no more,” said Bello.

Bello attributed the cancellation of the MOU signing to threats of some labor groups to charge the labor chief for partnering with ECOP.

“There was even one group who threatened to charge me with corruption. I am trying to help them regularize 200,000 and yet they will accuse me of corruption?” said Bello.

“The labor group said that if we push through with the signing, they will charge me with corruption,” he added.

The labor chief ruled out the possibility that the MOU signing will still happen in the future.

“You (labor groups) explain that to your workers. We will just have to let the union realize their fault,” said Bello.

Early this month, the labor department and ECOP are set to sign the MOU for the regularization of employees of ECOP-members companies.

The MOU, meanwhile, would result to the labor department declaring a moratorium on labor inspection effective for three years, “except when there is complaint lodge against” firms covered by the pact.

The Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP) then said that it have doubts on the pact.

The TUCP then said that it suspect that the MOU is a “way for some abusive employers to escape from labor inspections.”