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>cashing in on employees allowance

>The Beekeeper

By Pet Melliza

Uniform or “anyform”

P4,000 is P4,000 and that’s the reason why employees at the Iloilo Provincial Capitol are baffled at the way two officials there are ramming down their throats the exclusive procurement of their uniform for next year.

This early, the pair is itching to persuade Iloilo Province’s 2,200 employees to cough up the P4,000 even before the uniform allowance of the same amount is released in January or February next year.

Official “A” has its own set of designs from one supplier or tailoring shop in Manila. Official “B” has its own, too, also in Manila but a different contractor.

Fellow officials and the rank and file are just baffled because the duo’s technique of hard selling is just too radical, revolutionary even.

During the early three straight terms of Gov. Arthur D. Defensor, Sr. 1992 – 2001, employees had the option whether or not to wear uniform. They might spend their P2,000 uniform allowance for it or spend it for something else because Defensor didn’t give a hoot. He was more concerned for results, performance, that is.

During the time of Gov. Niel D. Tupas, Sr. (2001 – 2010), employees had the option whose tailoring or dress shop to go to so long as they followed the design agreed upon.

There was a time during Tupas’s watch when management contracted a single shop to sew the uniforms of all 2,300 employees. That didn’t work though because the contractor surrendered from pressure before finishing a dozen. Provincial employees subsequently went to shops of their choice.

In both administrations, employees had savings from the uniform allowance.

That’s not the case this time. The duet insists that the P4,000 must be spent for uniform allowance. Period. Walang sobra, walang kulang. The same pair of officials who also spread their wings and threw their weights around during Tupas’s time, are at it again. They insist that only one tailoring shop must be contracted to ensure that the attires are uniform not “anyform”.

Of course, employees were not born yesterday. They smell rat even before the pair of charlatans could open their mouths. The real score is the P4,000 multiplied by 2,200 employees which totals P8,800,000 to be cornered by the pair’s favourite suppliers in Manila who as a matter of course, must be generous and, thus, reward the lobbyists.

The pair has resorted to hard selling because they have a stake, period; to put it bluntly, commission. At the SOP rate of 10 percent, an P8.8 million contract means P880,000.

In previous years, the engineers and agriculturists assigned in the field and the staff of 12 hospitals run by Iloilo Province had the option; today, the duet insists that they, too, have to comply with the uniform requirement.

What the pair is proposing is impractical from the point of view of the end users (though, that may be very, very practical for the two). What if there were defects, where would the employees turn to? Must they still go to Manila to demand performance?

The debate here is not “uniform versus anyform” but employee welfare which the pair is making a mockery of in their scheme to execute a broad daylight robbery.

The stench of these two obnoxious characters are already well exposed and I don’t have to add any further. Both are known for their knack to spread their legs to pull themselves up in the promotion ladder. One even gifted her husband with an offspring not his.

Sigiha pa nyo, da!


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