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August 17, 2010 / whyhansdantes

Postal workers demand removal of Philpost officials

*This article has been published on Asian Correspondent, August 13, 2010. This is a news article concerning the plight of the employees of the Philippine Postal Corporation (Philpost), particularly on their demands to remove the higher officials, who had allegedly failed to provide solutions to the decline in the corporation’s profits. The lead sentence was changed, specifically a statement related to GOCC’s in general, as according to comments in the classroom, it was unnecessary. The previous title, “Postal workers cry for removal of GOCC officers was revised to avoid creating wrong or sensational impressions.

A steadfast statue of a mailman stands in front of the Manila Central Post Office, headquarters of the Philippine Postal Corporation (Philpost)

Postal workers demand removal of Philpost officers

By Hans Joshua Dantes

Members of the Postal Employees Union of the Philippines (PEUP) demanded the removal of key officials of the Philippine Postal Corporation (PhilPost), a Government-Owned and Controlled Corporation (GOCC).

In their resolution, the union requests from President Benigno Aquino III the replacement of career officials such as the corporation’s postmaster generals and the board of directors of the said GOCC.

Despite their prolonged assignments, PhilPost’s high officials supposedly failed to act on raising the corporation’s revenues, which is the reason for the year-long delays of allowances, benefits and salary increases of more than 12,000 employees.

“We believe there is mismanagement on the part of the higher-ups, who kept repeating that the income is ‘deteriorating’. Knowing that, how come they are not making any move or headway in keeping the corporation’s profits from falling further?” said Quirino Collada, Jr., PEUP Metro Manila Chairman.

PhilPost admits to the delays, but reiterates that they can only give when enough funding has been secured.

“It is not denied; we will still give it to them – only that it is delayed because of lack of funds. It is the obligation of the corporation to its employees,” said PhilPost Director Numeriano Dayrit.

Dayrit adds that the continuous operation of non-profitable branches and the advent of newer technologies such as mobile phones and the Internet are significant factors causing the decrease in the corporation’s profits.

The lack of funding is further aggravated by the exclusion of the corporation from the government budget by its independent charter, leading it to rely solely on its profits for the salaries and benefits.

Paid, Over and Under

PEUP also recommends the reduction of assistant postmaster generals from six to three. They resent the P90,000-high salary of such offices, which they believe are subject to overlapping functions and redundancies.

By comparison, the earnings of the average postmen range from P6000 to P10,000. Salary increases mandated by the Salary Standardization Law 3 (SSL3) due for July was not yet implemented, while the previous year’s increase given last December 2009 was only half of what was due.

Negotiations

PEUP leadership believes that government subsidy for the GOCC will help a long way in solving the financial problem.

The employees are trying to schedule a dialogue with the Department of Budget and Management under Secretary Florencio Abad, as well as with representatives of Malacañang, particularly Sec. Abad’s daughter, Presidential Management Chief of Staff Julia Abad.

Collada opines that while they are dismayed with the delays, things might be going on a “positive direction” with Aquino’s new administration.

“As far as I am concerned, let’s give him the benefit of the doubt. Hopefully, we might actually get to see some changes during the honeymoon period,” said Collada.

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