31 City Hall 'job order' workers unpaid-A A +A
By Riz P. Sunio
Friday, May 16, 2014
FOR almost half a year, 31 job order (JO) employees of the Cagayan de Oro City Council have not been paid their salaries for failing to comply with the documents needed for processing their wages and worst, there had been no funds allotted in the budget for their items.
City administrator Roy Hilario Raagas said that the Human Resource Management Office (HRMO) didn't issue the JO workers their request for employment (RE).
Raagas also said that the non-inclusion of their wages in the budget doesn't mean there are no funds at all since the salary of the JO employees will be slashed from the 2014 special project budget.
However, the special project budget, along with the regular budget of the city, is still subject for review by the Department of Budget and Management (DBM).
He said that there was no RE submitted to the City Budget Office for the unpaid JO workers, thus, their salaries were not included in the budget proposal.
There was also no source of fund to augment their salaries except from the special projects fund, Raagas added.
He said that the office of the vice mayor should have passed the REs of the 31 JO employees to the Budget office.
However, Joygem Caayupan, a contractual worker assigned at the office of the vice mayor, said that they sent a letter signed by vice-mayor Caesar Ian Acenas requesting for the issuance of REs for the job order employees addressed to HRMO dated March 7, 2014.
Caayupan suspected that their REs must have been hidden.
“There is already a supplemental budget given. But until now, our papers (REs) are still not signed,” she said.
She finds unfair that the JO employees of the city councilors had already received their salaries and they haven't.
A city hall official, who requested not to be named, said the wages of the JO employees under the city legislators were released despite that the fund comes from the supposed special project funds.
He said the connections of the city councilors helped them gather funds from offices which they borrowed and used for the salaries of their JO workers.
Sources inside the city hall said that the some JOs working for the city council were no longer reporting and their employment won't be renewed anymore.
Root of the problem
The unnamed official said that the problem with the salaries for the job order workers has its roots in politicking, with the budget issue becoming its offshoot.
“After the transition of term from Emano to Moreno, systems of budgeting and allocations were changed, even causing non-renewal of employment to some casual workers,” he said.
However, he assured that the special projects every year could guarantee the salaries of the JO workers. It has only been delayed due to politics resulting to budget problems
Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on May 16, 2014.