Manila, Philippines – Workers live more than bread and oil alone.
The Associated Labor UnionsTrade Union Congress of the Philippines (ALU-TUCP) said it will continue to push for the approval of the P90 wage hike in Metro Manila despite the recent rollback in the transportation fare and the price of pandesal.
ALU-TUCP spokesperson Alan Tanjusay said in a statement Tuesday they will defend the wage petition during the last length of the tripartite consultation being conducted by the Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board-National Capital Region (RTWP-NCR) on Thursday.
The largest labor group in the country earlier filed its wage petition due to the continuous in crease in the prices of oil products and other basic commodities.
Citing study conducted by the National Wages and Productivity Commission (NWPC) in 2008, Tanjusay said the wage adjustment is necessary to offset the estimated P917 daily income requirement of a family.
“The possible reduction in the price of pandesal and the rollback of jeepney fare to P8 pesos will not uplift workers from poverty. It will not dramatically change their way of life. The 90 pesos we asked are not negotiable,“ Tanjusay said.
RTWPB-NCR chairman Allan Macaraya said in a phone interview they are finalizing the said wage petition, which they are targeting to issue by next week after the anniversary date of the previous wage order this Saturday.
“Usually, the wage board comes up with a wage order on the same day unless there is still a disagreement among the members of the board,“ said Macaraya.
Under the Wage Rationalization Act, the wage boards could not issue the new wage adjustment ahead of its anniversary date unless there is a supervening condition.
The current minimum wage for non-agricultural workers in National Capital Region is pegged at P426, while agricultural workers receive at least P389. (Samuel P. Medenilla)