DAVAO CITY – The progressive Kilusang Mayo Uno on Monday belied government claims over the improved employment situation in the country saying President Benigno Aquino is only “desperate” to boost the presidential campaign of Liberal Party standard bearer, Mar Roxas.
In a statement, the labor group said that Pres. Aquino, “in invoking data on the supposed reduction of overseas Filipino workers and a decrease in unemployment rate is cherry-picking data that would suit his interest and is hiding the real employment situation in the country”.
Elmer Labog, KMU chairperson cited independent think-tank Ibon Foundation’s July 2015 data which show 4.3 million unemployed and 7.9 million underemployed.
“Aquino’s claims on the country’s employment situation and his so-called legacy are getting zanier and zanier. The jobs crisis in the country remains dire and the quality of available jobs miserable,” said Labog.
The labor leader said the return of many OFWs to the country “is a result of the continuing global financial and economic crisis affecting many countries, not the improvement in the country’s capacity to create jobs”.
He also said that the country’s employment data “are not reliable measurements of the jobs situation because the government sets a very low standard of what employed means, removes those who are jobless but not looking for work in the employed-unemployed count, and marks as unemployed only those who are actively seeking work”.
“Even if they are already considered employed, workers know the real employment situation. Starvation wages, contractual employment, violation of union rights continue to be the norm. Capitalists have always used the dire employment situation to force workers to accept dire working conditions,” Labog said.
The group reiterated their call for a P125 across-the-board wage increase nationwide and the banning of contractual employment. (davaotoday.com)