BARMM labor code pushed

BARMM labor code pushed

COTABATO CITY — Members of the Bangsamoro Parliament are keen on approving the proposed regional labor and employment code for three cities and provinces in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) before May this year.

On Monday, Parliament Member Romeo K. Sema, one of the authors of Bangsamoro Transition Authority Bill 59, the Bangsamoro Labor and Employment Code (BLEC), told reporters that he will prod his colleagues to accelerate its enactment into law.

Last Friday at the House of Representatives in Quezon City, Deputy Speaker Raymond Democrito C. Mendoza of the Trade Union Congress Party-list expressed support for the measure during a public hearing.

Mr. Mendoza said the code’s passage will affirm “Bangsamoro’s promise for sustainable and inclusive jobs, justice, and equity, ensuring workers have a seat at the table and access to decent work.”

Mr. Sema said the BLEC is “tailored-fit” to the socio-cultural and religious settings of the region.

Under the Bangsamoro Organic Law, the regional government guarantees fundamental workers’ rights, something Mr. Mendoza said would be realized once the BLEC is approved.

It would include rights for self-organization, collective bargaining, negotiations, and the right to strike, aligning with the Constitution and the Labor Code of the Philippines.

Mr. Sema, who is representing the Moro National Liberation Front in the BARMM parliament, said the BLEC was premised on insights shared by various sectors, including employers, during cross-section dialogues on its intricacies and ramifications.

“We have also consulted Muslim and Christian religious leaders as we drafted its provisions,” Mr. Sema said.

The BLEC was co-authored by four lawyers in the BARMM parliament, Raisa H. Jadjurie, Jose I. Lorena, Randolph C. Parcasio, Paisalin P. Tago and a known peace-activist, Eddie M. Alih.

The lawyer-entrepreneur Ronald Hallid D. Torres, chairman of the Bangsamoro Business Council, said they are thankful to Mr. Mendoza for expressing support for the BLEC. — John Felix M. Unson