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ROUGH CUTS | The need for mitigating measures

WELL, it’s barely two weeks before Christmas and it looks like many private establishment employees, especially those of small and medium enterprises, are still uncertain whether they can receive their 13th month pay or not at all.

     This is largely because most of businesses are still barely recovering from the effects of the now almost 3 years CoViD 19 pandemic and the Russian-Ukraine War in Europe which is affecting the entire world economically.

     While it is true that government through the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is offering assistance to those establishments through non-interest bearing loans solely for the purpose of helping them comply with the mandated extra employee compensation to jibe with the holiday season, it seems there is hesitance to avail of the program. What with the still uncertain times under a pandemic environment and the continuing threat of the war escalation.

     It is our hope though that despite difficult times, employers with hearts for their employees will find ways no matter how difficult it is. Bonuses and 13th month pay are, without doubt, major motivating factors for employees to be more productive and sincere in their efforts to help companies attain their goal.

     Hence, we encourage workers whose employers belong to that category of business to be a little patient. They have to show that they can empathize with them during times when hardship in making their businesses survive is still very much prevalent.


     It looks like the local government of the Island Garden City of Samal (IGaCoS) is doing the best it can to prepare the island for the influx of tourists, both local and outside of the Davao Region, as the Christmas season enters its most frenetic stage.

     Youthful City Mayor Al David Uy seems bent on not leaving any stone unturned just to make sure his city is ready to accommodate the influx of visitors most of whom are salivating to enjoy in his city’s beaches. Even in the installation of Christmas decorations in the major streets and entry points of the city the local government appears as if it is competing with other cities including its neighbors Davao and Panabo Cities. And from the looks of it and based on the number of bookings received by resort establishments in the island city this month, it is clear that the enticements are succeeding in its intentions.

     A friend of ours who had been to Samal for an overnight sojourn in one of the city’s beaches, told us that the whole of the island looks like it is a “city that is not ready to sleep” in the entire duration of the holiday season and even long after.

     Of course we agree because now that the island city is still not connected to the mainland Davao City and Davao del Norte Province, its economic life still solely depends on its vibrant tourism industry. Thus, the Mayor may have thought that for the meanwhile that his city is still somewhat isolated from the influx of large businesses and industries, he’d rather make the most of its unexpurgated allure.

     Yes, we can be certain that once the bridge is finally constructed the pristine Samal environment will never be the same again. It is the trade-off that development always exacts. Unless of course, this early all the mitigating measures needed to temper the impact of development in the island city is already well in place.


     Indeed the bill introduced by Actor-turned Senator Bong Revilla, Jr. proposing to lower down the age of persons to enter the so-called senior years from 60 to 56 has caught the attention of netizens. It has been subject to commentaries most of which are negative bordering to sarcastic.

     It looks like most of the negative comments on Revilla’s bill are pointing to the senator as having been missing one important related legislation that he could have introduced that will bring happiness to many who are in the middle of the third quarter of the game they called life.

     Had Senator Revilla worked on a bill facilitating the immediate compliance by the Social Security System (SSS) in releasing the remaining P1,000 of the P2,000 increase in pension of present retirees, it would have been most welcome.

     But he prefers to file a Bill in the Senate that will further increase government expenditures to foot the cost of benefits of senior citizens still in their 56 years of age and possibly even pensions to be paid if these new senior citizens will be required to retire from employment when they reach that age.





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