Dismissal of LRT workers slammed


National labor center Kilusang Mayo Uno led railroad and other industrial workers in a picket-protest at the Department of Transportation (DOTr) office in Ortigas to demand the reinstatement of the unjustly dismissed workers of the Light Rail Transit.

The Light Rail Manila Corporation dismissed 41 of its workers last June to make-up for the government-run company’s alleged losses due to unconfirmed ticket sales which is being managed by private concessionaire AF Payments Incorporated (AFPI).

“Workers should not be punished for the failures of LRT’s private contractors. It was the AFPI and not the workers who failed to deliver efficient service that has resulted in the losses of the LRT,” KMU secretary general Jerome Adonis said.

The KMU meanwhile urged DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade to order the LRTA to recall the unjust and blatantly anti-worker dismissal order.

“We call on secretary Tugade to recall the unjustly dismissed LRT workers. This would prove the DOTr’s commitment in bringing about the change that the Duterte administration has promised. For the longest time, workers’ rights to job security are being violated by such retrenchments to cut costs and boost capitalists’ profits” said Adonis.

The labor leader also insisted that the government should rescind all onerous contracts with private big businesses in the country’s railway system which has not only resulted in such unjust dismissals and violations of workers’ rights, but also to burdensome fare hikes and deterioration of services.

“Instead of retrenching workers to make-up for its losses, the LRTA should dismiss its contract with the sloppy and futile Ayala-Pangilinan run AFPI. These private concessionaires not only cause great losses for the LRT, but also burdens workers, commuters and the Filipino people” Adonis said.