Felix V. Valencia of Cebu Portland Cement Company

CEBUPEDIA - Clarence Paul Oaminal - The Freeman

Felix V. Valencia was General Superintendent of Cebu Portland Cement Company, Cebu, with a salary of P12,000 per annum. He first served with Cebu Portland as Assistant General Superintendent from July 1939 with a salary of P7,200 per annum. In  November, 1947, on recommendation of the general manager, he was promoted to the position of general superintendent with compensation of P9,600 per annum. On  May 1, 1949, he got a promotional appointment with a compensation of P12,000 per annum.

On October 7, October 21, and October 23, the Secretary of Economic Coordination ordered the general manager of the Cebu Portland Cement Company (located in Naga, Cebu, it used to be government owned) to take steps to secure a reduction in the expenses of the company, in order to enable it to produce cement at a lower cost and thus reduce its price for the benefit of the public. Pursuant to this order the manager proposed that the annual salary of the general superintendent of the plant be reduced to P10,800 and recommended that Valencia be retired for the good of the service and the assistant general superintendent take his place as general superintendent. The Secretary of Economic Coordination approved the proposal and recommendation and ordered the retirement of Mr. Valencia effective November 16, 1950. Valencia refused to retire as ordered and so filed the incidental case.

Valencia was a member of the Philippine Land-Air-Sea Labor Union who filed a petition with the Court of Industrial Relations against Cebu Portland Company on December 31, 1948 submitting a set of grievances and demands against the Cebu Portland.

Felix V. Valencia while the case was pending was dismissed by the Cebu Portland Company on November 16, 1950. Thus the labor union informed the Court of Industrial Relations of the unjust dismissal and that Valencia should be reinstated to his position.

Cebu Portland Company in its answer said that Valencia was merely retired from the service together with 100 employees and laborers to promote economy and efficiency in the service in accordance with the order of the Secretary of Economic Coordination.

The action of Valencia was granted by the Court of Industrial Relations which ordered the Cebu Portland Cement Company his reinstatement, with full back pay at P1,000 a month from November 15, 1950, up to his reinstatement and the differential salary collectible from May 1, 1949 up to November 16, 1950, with all the privileges and emoluments attached to the position.

Cebu Portland Cement Company assisted by the Cebuano legal luminary, Fortunato V. Borromeo (who was admitted to the Bar on July 14, 1913) and Assistant Government Corporate Counsel Leovigildo Monasterial went to the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court on March 11, 1954 in an En Banc decision affirmed the decision reinstating Felix Valencia. The labor union was assisted by Cebuano lawyer Emilio Lomuntad (his son and namesake, Emilio Jr. also became a lawyer and became Mayor of Pinamungajan from 1965 to 1971).

Valencia refused to leave the company house and Portland brought suit against him for illegal detainer, the Justice of the Peace of Naga, Cebu ordered Valencia to vacate, however the latter was able to appeal his case before the Court of First Instance and filed a bond. The CFI denied the granting of writ of execution, thus the Cebu Portland Cement went to the Supreme Court and for certiorari and mandamus. The Supreme Court on September 29, 1953 denied the action of Cebu Portland Cement Company, thus Valencia retained possession of the house.

Felix V. Valencia later filed a complaint for damages against Eduardo Taylor, the GM (was assisted by Eduardo Taylor Jr. who became a lawyer on April 6, 1953) of Cebu Portland Cement Company. This was however dismissed by the Court of Industrial Relations and its dismissal was affirmed by the Supreme Court on December 23, 1959.

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