2 workers belie DSWD work payment record-A A +A
Wednesday, February 13, 2013
DAVAO CITY -- Two persons hired for the construction of bunkhouses in Compostela Valley denied receiving P4,200 each from the social welfare office in Davao Region, saying they only got P300 and P600.
In an interview Tuesday, Romulo Serot, 50, carpenter, and his son, Remly, 23, said they feel “betrayed” after the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) reported they worked for 12 days straight when they were not even made to work half of the time they were alleged to.
Romulo said a certain Mau-Mau hired him to work as a carpenter for the bunkhouses to be built in the USEP Compound, Compostela, Compostela Valley.
“Interesado gud ta mag trabaho kay gikan ta gibagyo. So nanghulam ko martilyo ug gabas, nag trabaho ko. Sa akong pagtrabaho, usa ra ko kaadlaw kay gikuha man sa tag-iya akong gamit, kadtong martilyo ug gabas (We were very interested to find work as we just survived a typhoon. So I borrowed a hammer and a hacksaw, I worked but only for a day because the owner of the tools got the hammer and saw back),” he told reporters who visited him Tuesday.
“Gikuha ko nila pagbalik kay kuno kulang ang mga panday. Ingon ko di nako mubalik kay wala naman ko’y gamit. Unya akong bata maoy akong gipuli sa akong katungod. Pero miingon man sila na dili pwede panday ang bata so sa labor nako gibutang (The one who recruited me wanted me back as a carpenter but I told them I can’t because I don’t have any more tools. I told them to just get the services of my child as laborer, but they said my son is too young to be hired as a carpenter, but they agreed to take him in as a laborer),” he said.
As a carpenter, he was promised P300 per day, while as a laborer, his son would receive P200 per day.
Thus, for the one day work he did, he got P300, while his son who worked three days got P600.
On the contrary, based on a copy of a record from the DSWD obtained by Nico Alconaba of Inquirer, it revealed that both the father and the son signed the document stating that they worked for 12 days (from December 11 to December 22, 2012) with a rate of P350 per day each; P50 more than what Romulo received for a day’s work.
Ten others were listed, three laborers (P200 per day each), a foreman (P400 per day) and another six carpenters (P350 per day each). All of them had signatures affixed to their names, noting that they worked for a total of 12 days.
“Bakak ni siya kay usa ra gyud kaadlaw akong natrabahuan sa akong kaugalingon. Sa akong bata tulo ra pud (This record lies because I only worked for one day and my son only worked for three days),” Romulo said.
Romulo also pointed out that the signature on the DSWD document is forged because he only asked his son to claim his payment. While Remly got the P300 paid to Romulo, he said, he did not sign anything.
Romulo said he is not interested in the money, saying he did get what he worked for, although why the record claims he got more bothers him.
“Wala ko kabalo ana. Wala pud ko nangutana kay gihimo diay nilang dose ang akong usa kaadlaw na pagtrabaho (I don’t know anything about that claim. I also did not question that they made it appear I received 12 days of wages),” he said, adding that all he thought was that the P300 he received was the minimum rate DSWD could afford to pay.
He said he feels bad that it’s turning out that people are taking advantage of the typhoon victims when they deserve all the help they can get.
“Mura na hinuon ug gipahimuslan sa gobyerno, kung huna-hunaon, sweldado man na sila. Ikaduha, kwarta na sa tao dili unta na nila dapat hilabtan. Ihatag unta nila sa mga tao nga nanginahanglan (It’s like the government is exploiting us. Those people in government are paid properly, now they are dipping their hands in people’s money. They should give that to the people in need),” he said.
Romulo said he hopes his standing up to state the truth will not earn him the ire of those who are behind this anomaly as he is merely stating facts as he knows them.
“Sila na pud dapat na musabot kung angay ba nila initan ang usa ka tao nga gipahimuslan ra (They should also ask themselves if it is right to turmn their ire on a person who has just been exploited),” he added.
Romulo has nine children. Remly is third among them.
In a separate interview, Remly said he stopped working since he could earn more in driving a trisikad and he was still attending classes that start around 4:30 p.m., earlier than the end of a workday.
“Laborer ko kaniadto. Hakot kahoy, tunol sin (I worked as mere laborer. I carried lumber and galvanized iron sheets),” he said.
Like his father, he felt bad that it’s being made to appear that they received so much.
“Wala man namo na trabahoa. Wala pud namo na kobraha (We did not work for those days being claimed on record, we did not collect that amount),” he said.
When showed the photo of the document, he said he could not recall signing any document when he got their wages. He also insisted the signature that appears beside his name is not his.
He said they were asked to sign a paper, but this was not the document shown.
His father also did not sign anything since he was not there when the honoraria were distributed.
Remly is not surprised that their signatures were forged, saying: “Sa akong papa, gihimuan man gani nila, unsa na lang kaha akoa nga sayon ra kaayo (They made it appear that my father signed, it’s easier to make it appear that I signed).”
The Serots wanted DSWD to clarify things.
But attempts to call the number of one Karen Mangubat, the DSWD team leader for USEP Compound in poblacion Compostela town of Compostela Valley, failed. Her number remained unattended even after several attempts. (Sun.Star Davao/Sunnex)
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on February 13, 2013.