Bello boasts of being the first Labor Chief to have the balls to make Sy, Tan Caktiong to stop ‘endo’ practice
Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III believes his fearlessness in standing up to the country’s richest men will make him a good Ombudsman.
During the public interview of the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) for aspirants vying for the Ombudsman post, Bello underscred his efforts to force the country’s top corporations, specifically Jollibee group of bilyonaryo Tony Tan Caktiong and SM group of Henry Sy, to stop their practice of ‘endo’ (end of contract) in which they only hire staff for less than six months to avoid paying them regular benefits.
“This is probably the first time anyone of us in court is hearing the decision of the Secretary of Labor directing one of the biggest companies in our country, PLDT, to regularize its employees. malalaking corporations po ito(these are big corporations) – Jollibee, Burger King, and soon to come will be yung Mang Inasal, Chowking, Red Ribbon – they will all be treated equally: we will demand and order them to regularize their employees in accordance with the provision of our Constitution on the security of tenure of our workers,” he said.
To date, some 182,000 contractual employees have been regularized under Bello’s leadership.
The Department of Labor and Employment is eyeing 300,000 more to be regularized before yearend.
He said the accomplishment was made possible despite the department’s handicap of having only 574 labor law compliance officers to undertake the inspection of some 900,000 business establishments nationwide.
The Labor Secretary also told the JBC panel that he was able to compel the SM Supermalls, the biggest mall chain in the country, to regularize some of its workers.
According to Bello, the company came up with a regularization program and promised DOLE for this semester that they would regularize not less than 5,000 of their employees and by the end of the year 2018 they will regularize another 5,000 — a total of 10,000 workers.
“To my mind, your honor, wala pa yatang nakakagawang Department of Labor (Secretary) ng ganyan (no Labor Secretary has done that); with all humility, pambihira ‘yung achievement na yun (that is a rare achievement),” Bello said. (PNA)