2 M to receive P426 wage rate on May 26

Published by rudy Date posted on May 13, 2011

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Labor and Employment (DoLE) Friday insisted that the additional P22 cost of living allowance (CoLA) for minimum wage workers in Metro Manila is not tantamount to nothing despite not being included in the basic wage rate.

Acting Labor and Employment Secretary Danilo Cruz said that labor standards regulations provide that COLAs are included in the computation of the mandatory related benefits of workers.

“Our role now is to explain the COLA computation and its benefits to our workers,” he said.

Cruz said the P22 COLA granted under Wage Order No. 16 is included in the computation of private sector workers’ five days service incentive leave, vacation leave, sick leave, paternity and maternity leaves, and leaves under Republic Act 9262, or the Victims of Violence against Women and their Children.

He added that the CoLA is also computed in the payment of 12 national holidays and three special holidays as well as in the determination of the premium payments for Social Security System (SSS) and Pag-Ibig, and separation and retirement pays.

The CoLA, on the other hand, is excluded in the computation of the payment for the 13th month pay, overtime pay, night shift differential pay and PhilHealth premiums pursuant to Presidential Decree No. 525 or Letter of Instruction No. 174.

Almost two million minimum wage workers in the National Capital Region (NCR) are set to receive a P426 wage rate upon the order’s effectivity on May 26.

Meanwhile, the Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU) has criticized President Aquino for allowing “meager” CoLA for workers while earning for himself P4.8 million.

“It fills us with anger that Noynoy has boosted his personal wealth while doing nothing to alleviate the hunger and poverty of the Filipino workers and people,” KMU Secretary-General Roger Soluta said in a statement.

“It is clearly too easy for him to gorge up P4.8 million while he is making a show of the difficulty in getting a P22 CoLA for the workers approved,” he added. –LESLIE ANN G. AQUINO, Manila Bulletin

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