The Philippine Airlines Employees Association (PALEA) called the decision of the Supreme Court to affirm the reopening of the Flight Attendants and Stewards Association (FASAP) case as a “travesty of justice.” “Only in the Philippines can a case that had already been ruled with finality twice by the highest court of the land still be reviewed once more on its merits. Indeed justice delayed is justice denied for 1,400 our sister and brother flight attendants,” asserted Gerry Rivera, PALEA president.
He added that “FASAP’s case is relevant is PALEA’s fight since if the retrenchment of cabin crew in 1998 at a time when Philippine Airlines was bankrupt is illegal then so much more is the layoff of 2,400 ground staff after the flag carrier posted PhP 3 billion in profit for its previous fiscal year.”
Meanwhile Renato Magtubo, chairperson of the Partido ng Manggagawa, declared that “The timing of the release of the Supreme Court resolution clearing Chief Justice Renato Corona is perfectly timed for the defense presentation in the impeachment case. It leaves everyone thinking that it is part of the impeachment defense of Corona.”
Magtubo said that the plight of FASAP and PALEA reveals the failure of the labor justice system in the country. “It is not just with the Supreme Court but even more with the graft ridden National Labor Relations Commission, National Mediation and Conciliation Board and Department of Labor and Employment that workers lose to the power of money of abusive capitalists,” he added.
“Workers demand reforms beyond the prosecution of Gloria and the impeachment of Corona. For workers at least get a taste of fair share of justice, the NLRC, NCMB and DOLE must be cleansed, and the policies of liberalization, deregulation and privatization that have led to thousands of closures and layoffs, and collapse of industry and agriculture must be rolled back,” Magtubo explained.
PM announced that the May Day campaign will start early with a “Kalbaryo ng Manggagawa at Maralita” on the first week of April that will highlight the issues of low wages, high prices, mass unemployment, contractual jobs and urban poor demolitions.