COA flags Eastern Samar LGU over underpaid employees

Elizabeth Marcelo - The Philippine Star
COA flags Eastern Samar LGU over underpaid employees
The photo of the Commission on Audit's office in Quezon City taken on Aug. 17, 2021.
The STAR / Michael Varcas

MANILA, Philippines — The Commission on Audit (COA) has called out the provincial government of Eastern Samar for paying contract of service (COS) and job order (JO) employees below the prescribed daily minimum wage in the region.

In its 2023 annual audit report on Eastern Samar, the COA said payrolls submitted by the provincial government showed that 1,923 out of the 2,106 COS and JO employees were paid only P300 per day from January to April.

The audit body noted the daily minimum wage in Eastern Visayas is P375.

The COA said the provincial government’s failure to comply with the prescribed wage violated Presidential Decree No. 442 or the Labor Code and Section 18, Article 2 of the 1987 Constitution, which guarantees the protection of the rights and welfare of workers.

“The additional compensation could have helped them support their daily needs and expenses,” the audit report read. ”An increase in their wages will also promote an increase in these personnel’s morale.”

The COA also noted delays in the release of the salaries of COS and JO employees from January to November 2023.

The audit body said the provincial government should address issues causing the delay in the release of salaries and comply with the mandated daily minimum wage rate.

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