MANILA, Philippines, August 26, 2014 – The National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC) upheld the validity of the Digitel redundancy program in a Resolution promulgated this week.
The NLRC Resolution puts to rest the labor dispute between Digitel and a group of complainants in the Digitel Employees Union (DEU), which had questioned the Digitel redundancy program carried out in early 2013.
With the NLRC Resolution, these 86 remaining DEU group members are now entitled to separation benefits from the redundancy program, as well as backwages from March 16 to July 30, 2013, and their separation can take immediate effect.
The NLRC Resolution denied the DEU Motion for Reconsideration. It also confirmed the findings in the NLRC's March 18, 2014 Decision, that the Digitel telecommunications network had reached its "end of life" stage, and that it was financially impossible for Digitel to have upgraded and modernized its network -- leading to the migration of Digitel subscribers to PLDT. Because the redundancy program was a consequence of these events, the NLRC concluded that the separation of the entire Digitel workforce was done in good faith.
The Resolution also upheld the finding that almost all of Digitel's thousand-person workforce voluntarily availed of the redundancy program, except for the 86 DEU group members. This means that the bargaining unit the DEU alleged it represented, has ceased to exist, and DEU has no right to demand collective bargaining with Digitel.