MANILA - President Rodrigo Duterte will still certify a proposed law to stop "end of contract" or endo as a priority even after he signed an executive order against the labor scheme, his spokesperson Harry Roque said Wednesday.
Under the proposed law, employees hired for an indefinite period will be deemed regular once the 6-month probationary period is over. The measure was approved by the House of Representatives on third reading in January.
"Ang alam ko po, iyung House version ay ise-certify as urgent ng Pangulo para iyun ang maaktuhan sa Senado nang mabilisan," Roque told radio DZMM.
(From what I know, the House version will be certified as urgent by the President so the Senate can act on it immediately.)
Duterte on Labor Day said he has signed an executive order stopping illegal contractualization.
Some labor groups, however, said the executive issuance merely spelled out what was already said in the Philippine Labor Code and would still allow companies to use manpower agencies as "middlemen" in hiring employees when direct hiring should be the norm.
"Hindi naman po tama na sabihin na balewala ito, walang bago. Totoo po, ito po'y reiteration lang ng batas, pero ganyan po talaga ang katungkulan ng ehekutibo. Hindi po talaga tagagawa ng polisiya ang ehektubo; tagapagpatupad lamang," said Roque.
(It is not right to say that this doesn't matter or that there's nothing new. It's true. it's a reiteration of the law, but that is just the role of the executive branch. The executive does not make policies, but rather merely enforce these.)
"Tingin ko, ang bago d'yan, iyung political will ni Presidente na talaga ipatutupad niya ang pagtatapos ng endo," he added.
(I think what is new there is the political will of the President to end endo.)
Roque also stressed that the President did not promise a total ban on contractualization, but rather, a crackdown endo and the 5-5-5, where employers end contracts on the fifth month and renew it for 5 months a time to avoid granting workers regular employee status.
Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III, in a separate DZMM interview, also noted that the law allows contractualization in seasonal and project-based jobs.
He also denied that Duterte's executive order was pro-employer.
The draft order, he said, came from labor groups and merely incorporated employers' suggestion.