[Marxism] Filipino workers protest

Tom O'Lincoln suarsos at alphalink.com.au
Thu Aug 10 04:03:50 MDT 2006


Subject: Filipino workers protest at Japanese MNC
Date: Thu, 10 Aug 2006
Press Release, August 10, 2006
Partido ng Manggagawa (Labor Party-Philippines)

Workers at Japanese plant protest government and management connivance

Around 150 workers of a Japanese semiconductor plant in the industrial
suburbs of the Metro Manila in the  Philippines together with allied
groups Partido ng Manggagawa (Labor Party) marched today to protest
management's refusal to accept back the protesting laborers. The union
at the Japanese plant that is located inside  the prestigious Laguna
Technopark (an export processing enclave in Southern Luzon part of the
Philippines just  outside Metro Manila) comprise some 289 regular
employees of the manufacturer of copper foil used in  semiconductor
chips.

The march started as early as 6:30 am today at the Coke Sta. Rosa plant
and proceeded to the Laguna Technopark where the plant of Nikko
Materials Phils. is located. The protest ended at 11:30 am today after a
program where speakers denounced the management and the Department of
Labor and Employment. "The more labor is repressed,  the greater the
eruption of the social volcano in our country," declared Ronnie Luna of
the Partido ng Manggagawa  (Labor Party).

"Management is illegally refusing to implement the back-to-work order
issued by the office of the labor secretary of almost one year ago. And
the labor department is being inutile in executing its own order,"
insisted Darwin Valenzuela, union president of NMWAP-SUPER (Nikko
Materials Workers Association of the Philippines-Solidarity of Union of
the Philippines for Empowerment and Reform).

The October 7, 2005 order of the labor secretary mandates that all
striking employees should go back to work and for management to accept
them back on the same terms and conditions of employment prior to
strike. Management only accepted back about half of the striking workers
and terminated the 150 workers who led the march today.

The dispute at the Nikko Materials Phils. started over a deadlock at the
negotiations for a new collective bargaining agreement, forcing the
workers to conduct a sit-in strike and the labor department granting
management's request for an assumption of jurisdiction.

Valenzuela stated, "Our struggle shows clearly the connivance between
management and government and the double standard of our laws. The labor
department lost no time in enjoining our strike using the assumption of
jurisdiction and then dragged its feet in implementing the back to work
order-both to management's benefit and labor's disadvantage."

He recalled the circumstances of the strike-"Out of 19 points in our
collective bargaining proposal, management only wants to talk about
two-wage increase and sick leave/vacation leave. They are throwing loose
change to  workers who have sweated to make the company productive.
Management is offering a package worth only Php14 million for the next
two years compared to workers demands valued at Php80 million which is a
drop in the bucket  given that Nikko Materials had sales accruing to
Php8 billion in the last three years. Workers are asking for a wage
increase of Php150 per day in the 4 th and 5th year of the CBA which is
not extreme considering that Nikko Materials is a high value-added
manufacturer in the profitable semiconductor industry." ###







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