THE Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board for Western Visayas is expected to approve today a P11.50 increase in the region’s daily minimum wage.

John Peter Millan, the employers’ representative to the board, said the increase is due for approval despite the declaration of workers’ representative Wennie Sancho that he will not sign the wage order “as a manifestation of indignation and protest.”

Millan said on Sunday the P11.50 raise was decided by the government representatives after the labor and the management sectors came up with different offers.

Labor offered P25 while management offered P10, Millan said.

The regional board is headed by Labor Regional Director Ponciano Ligutom.

Non-agriculture, industrial and commercial workers in the region are currently paid a minimum of P245 to P287 per day. Agriculture workers employed in plantations get P255 and non-plantation employees, P245.

“We agree to the increase and we will sign the order because it is based on the inflation rate and the present purchasing power of our peso," Millan said.

But Sancho said P11.50 is “not only an insult to our dignity as workers, it is also demeaning and dehumanizing.”

He said the P298.50 new minimum pay for commercial and industrial workers is way below the ideal of P550.

Sancho said he will sign the wage order only if the board agrees to at least P25 per day.

“Outrageous would be the proper term for this contemptible decision made by the government and management representatives in the board without due regard to the miserable plight of the workers,” he said.