Rank-and-file employees of Duty Free Philippines Corp. on Wednesday filed a petition with the Office of the Ombudsman to seek the resolution of their two-year-old plunder, graft and administrative complaints against top officials of the state-owned retail firm.
In a motion for early resolution, the complainants invoked Section 16, Article 3 of the 1987 Constitution guaranteeing the rights of all persons to a “speedy disposition of their cases before all judicial, quasi-judicial or administrative bodies.”
Alexander Sablan, Nestor Zabala, Eric Oracion, Carlito Ardales, Nilo Duarte and Joaquin Vibal, stock keepers under the logistics division; Ernesto Mangalindan and Francis Daco, store personnel, Romeo Silva Jr. and Rizalino Santos, merchandising assistants, urged the Ombudsman to swiftly act its investigation, saying respondent DFPC chief operating officer Vicente Pelagio Angala resorted to retaliatory acts against them.
The March 16, 2017 accused Angala and ex-COO Lorenzo Formoso of profiting from their positions by maintaining the manpower contracts with DFP Services Inc., a private company, wherein Angala was the president and Formoso was then an incorporator and director.
The complainants said both officials refused to comply with the Supreme Court decision in DFP vs DFPEA issued on Dec. 7, 1998 giving them and other similarly-situated “contractual employees” regular status as direct hires of Duty Free Philippines (DFP, later DFPC) dating back to 1997.
According to the complaint, as a result of the SC ruling, former DFP general manager Faustino Salud issued a notice of termination on Nov. 25, 1999 directing DFPSI to account for the funds intended for employees’ benefits paid by the DFP to the private manpower firm.
DFPSI shelled out the employees’ retirement fund of P29.83 million as of Jan. 11, 2001.
The complainants claimed the management issued appointment papers to make it appear that their service as government personnel only started on Jan. 1, 2016.
Despite their rendering services for over 20 years, they said they were deprived of their due compensation and benefits.
Moreover, they said DFPSI profited from the continuing deal with DFPC by passing on its tax liabilities to the government firm amounting to P120.25 million representing value-added tax assessed by the Bureau of Internal Revenue from 1989 to 1996.