Urgent Justice for Eton Workers Sought (PR)

Media Release
3 February 2011

Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU) urged the Makati local government and the Department of Labor to act swiftly on bringing justice to the victims of the Eton accident, especially now that the investigation is more inclined to hold Eton contractor, liable.

According to the Makati local government, as far as the safety aspects of the construction project is concerned, CE Construction, the project’s general contractor, is responsible for securing permits of compliance for safety regulations. The chief investigator of the Eton tragedy has said that criminal charges of reckless imprudence resulting to multiple homicide and serious physical injuries await those who would be held liable.

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“We will not stop clamoring for justice until Eton contractor is punished, especially that our government is very wary on prosecuting any big investors and corporations who may be responsible for such crimes, parallel to the scenario of President Aquino’s reluctance to increase wage for fear of discouraging big foreign and local investors,” Soluta said.

“The release of P1.4-million for medical and funeral assistance to the families of 11 workers will not, in any way, mitigate the negligence of Eton Properties, contractor and,” Soluta added.

End subcontracting schemes

“But we should not forget the context of the tragedy, in which the government is also clearly liable. Aside from violation of safety standards at the worksite, the workers who died were receiving only P260 per day and were even denied of health and insurance benefits,” Soluta said.

“We reiterate our call to DOLE and President Aquino to end contracting and subcontracting schemes in the country, which bring perilous and unjust working conditions. DOLE Department Order 57-04 which allows big corporations to evade compliance to safety and health standards at workplaces should be revoked.

Roger Soluta, KMU secretary-general

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