Valenzuela City suspends permit of factory that paid worker in coins

Valenzuela City suspends permit of factory that paid worker in coins
This image shows the two-day salary of P1,056 of a factory worker in Valenzuela City all in five and ten centavo coins.
Valenzuela City Public Information Office / Released

MANILA, Philippines — Valenzuela City has suspended the business permit of the factory that paid one of its workers in five and 10-centavo coins.

Valenzuela City Mayor Rex Gatchalian suspended plastic hose factory NexGreen Enterprise’s business permit after its owners admitted in a meeting at city hall that it did not pay proper wages to factory worker Russel Mañoza.

The city found that NexGreen did not pay Mañoza the correct minimum wage, overtime pay, night shift differential and holiday pay.

The city’s Workers’ Affairs Office calculated that Mañoza should have received P55,614.93 for the five months of work he rendered for NexGreen.

Other violations of NexGreen include its payment of coins beyond the limit allowed by law, and its failure to provide government-mandated benefits.

The city is giving NexGreen just 24 hours to correct these violations or else it “will have no recourse but to have the issued business permit … suspended or revoked or not renew[ed.]”

Gatchalian said NexGreen has a “pattern” of improper treatment of workers and warned its owner that such practices have no place in the city.

In its defense, NexGreen said during a meeting at city hall that the P1,056 in coins it paid to Mañoza were meant for “religious activities” and were handed out by mistake.

Mañoza insisted, however, that the factory intended to pay him in coins to spite him after he complained about its labor practices.

Gatchalian also found it hard to believe that NexGreen intended the coins to be a religious offering and was given to Mañoza by mistake.

“‘Di po sana tayo aabot sa ganito kung pinasahod niyo sana kami ng maayos noong Sabado at kung maayos ang trato niyo sa mga empleyado niyo,” Mañoza said.

(We wouldn’t have reached this point if you paid us correctly last Saturday and if you treated your employees well.) — Xave Gregorio with reports from Marc Jayson Cayabyab/The STAR and Franco Luna

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