Home » Aviation » Malacañang orders status quo at PAL

Aquino sets aside DOLE order

THE Philippine Airlines Employees’ Association (PALEA) welcomed President Benigno Aquino III’s order last week to adopt a status quo at Philippine Airlines (PAL).

The decision effectively stops the airline from spinning off three of their non-core units which will affect about 2,600 employees, and union members from going on a strike.

“PAL employees will have a merry Christmas since no retrenchment will happen this holiday season,” PALEA president Gerry Rivera said. “Although it is not yet sure if we will have a happy new year because the suspension of the ruling of (Labor Secretary Rosalinda) Baldoz (by President Aquino) is only temporary.”

Baldoz earlier ruled that PAL’s plan to spin off its three units is legal.

Rivera said while the planned strike by PALEA has been stopped by the assumption order from the Office of the President, such an option remains if the labor dispute remains unresolved, considering the legal requirements have already been complied with.

For its part, PAL said it will respect the Malacañang directive.

“PAL would like to reiterate that it has not in any way, shape or form implemented the spin off of its three non-core businesses, as it is awaiting the result of the Palace review of the labor dispute,” PAL president Jaime Bautista said.

“While PAL’s spin-off program can wait, the order stopping the strike is the best Christmas gift the Palace can give to thousands of anxious PAL passengers with scheduled flights this holiday season. The strike ban will assuage the anxiety of our passengers in the midst of PALEA’s repeated strike threats,” Bautista added.

He noted PAL has always maintained that the primary jurisdiction over the labor dispute rested with Malacañang.

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