Workers of Mining Firm Seek Payment of Unpaid Wages

Northern Dispatch
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BAGUIO CITY — In a bid to resolve the unpaid wages and other obligations of the Lepanto Consolidated Mining Company to its workers, officers of three employees’ unions sought a dialogue with the company’s officials in its head office in Makati City, Sept. 8.

Since last year, the workers complained of delayed payments. They even received partial payments which they said is not enough for their daily survival.

The company agreed to schedule a dialogue with its employees only after Senator Ma. Consuelo “Jamby” Madrigal intervened for the workers in July. Madrigal said she will initiate a Senate inquiry if the workers’ issues will not be resolved. The Lepanto mine workers sought the assistance of the senator as the company continued to ignore their demands.

Officers of the three unions Lepanto Employees’ Union-National Federation of Labor Unions-Kilusang Mayo Uno (LEU-NAFLU-KMU), the Lepanto Security Force Union-NAFLU-KMU and the Lepanto Local Supervisory Staff Union were met by Lepanto President Brian Yap and other members of the board of directors and lawyers.

LEU-NAFLU-KMU President Manuel Binhaon said that the company promised to bring back the normal schedules of paying the workers’ wages. He said that the company will pay the rank-and-file employees’ wage every 10th, 20th and 30th day of the month.

Meanwhile, the clerical staff will be paid every 15th and 30th day of the month. Binhaon added that the company has promised to pay their unpaid wages. As of this week, Binhaon said, they have been given their regular pay.

SSS and Pag-ibig

Lepanto was reported to have not paid the workers’ Social Security System (SSS) premiums amounting to P110 million even as the company continuously deducted SSS and Pag-ibig contributions from the workers’ pay. The company has still to remit more than P52 million for premiums and loan payments to the SSS and some P3.4 million unpaid remittances for Pag-ibig and cooperative payments.

Binhaon said that the company promised to settle the workers’ SSS premiums and Pag-ibig contributions on a two-year mode of payment. “It means, we have to wait for two years before we can apply for loans and enjoy our benefits,” Binhaon said.

Binhaon said that if the company failed to deliver on its promises, the respective unions will discuss with their members their next move. Northern Dispatch/Posted by

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