The online news portal of TV5
MANILA, Philippines -- Militant groups staged various protest actions on Labor Day, May 1, criticizing the Aquino government's inaction on their demand for a legislated P125 across-the-board wage hike.
The militant labor group Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU) said an estimated 30,000 demonstrators consisting of farmers, laborers, and students will march in various sites in Metro Manila for the protest.
The group Bayan (Bagong Alyansang Makabayan) slammed the Aquino government and its “Aquinomics” and called it anti-worker and anti-people.
“The Aquino government has opposed any meaningful wage increase, the regulation of prices as well as genuine national industrialization. Aquinomics favors business interests over workers' interests. Aquinomics favors deregulation, privatization, and further liberalization of the economy. No wonder Aquino’s approval marks on economic issues has gone down consistently,” said Bayan secretary general Renato Reyes Jr.
Bayan also called it "most insulting" the proposal by the Employers Confederation of the Philippines for a measly P8 daily wage hike.
“It is unacceptable. It’s not even enough to pay for the minimum jeepney fare of P8.50 or for extra rice in a carinderia. Government must not even dignify this ludicrous proposal from greedy capitalist employers,” Reyes said.
Meanwhile, KMU said the Aquino government has "nothing to brag" about the country’s employment situation, saying Aquino’s first full year in office witnessed only a small decrease in unemployment. Citing data from the 2011 National Statistics Office (NSO), KMU said unemployment fell from 7.3% to 7% or only a 100,000 reduction.
“Its first full year in office shows that the Aquino government is a failure in job generation. It has relied on foreign investors to generate employment in the country,” said KMU chairperson Elmer Labog.
The PNP has gone on full alert status in Metro Manila for the protests. Meanwhile, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) has deployed six EOD teams and six K9 units for security measures.