DESPITE meeting opposition from the business sector, the wage orders which provide P55 to P110 per day increase in the daily minimum wage and P500 per month salary increase for domestic helpers (kasambahays) in Western Visayas are already approved.

This after it has already been published by the Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board (RTWPB) in newspaper Friday, May 20, 2022.

Sections 5 and 9 of the Wage Orders state that its effectivity is 15 days after the date of publication.

With that, the wage hike for private sector workers in the region will take effect on June 5, 2022.

The effectivity date of the Wage Orders was also confirmed to SunStar Bacolod by Wennie Sancho, labor representative to the RTWPB-Western Visayas.

On Thursday, May 12, 2022, the RTWPB-Western Visayas approved the new salary rates for minimum wage workers in the region.

Under Wage Order No. 26, commercial and industrial or non-agricultural workers will be receiving P450 per day or an increase of P55 from the existing rate of P395 per day.

For those working in the establishments with 10 workers or less, the approved wage increase is P110 per day. This means that from P310, the daily minimum wage in this category will be P420.

While those in the agricultural sector, workers will receive a P95 per day increase. From the existing rate of P315, the new rate is P410 per day.

Earlier, Sancho stressed that the appeal of any party cannot operate to stay the implementation of the Wage Order.

He reiterated that under Section 5 of Rule IV of the Omnibus Rules on Minimum Wage Determination under NWPC Guidelines No. 3 Series of 2020, after the Wage Order has been reviewed by the commission, the Board may now cause its publication.

Section 6 of the said guidelines stated that a Wage Order is not subject to a Motion for Reconsideration but may be appealed to the NWPC within 10 days from the date of its publication.

Under Section 1 of Rule V of the Omnibus Rules, meanwhile, an appeal may be taken from a Wage Order issued by the Board by filing a verified memorandum of appeal to the commission within a non-extendible period of 10 days from the date of publication, stating the ground relied upon, the arguments in support thereof, and the relief being sought.

Calling it "bad timing and horrible," a local business leader said they are eyeing a possible temporary restraining order (TRO) against the impending implementation of the wage hike in the region.

Frank Carbon, vice president of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) for the Visayas, said the move is to avoid irreparable damage to the small businesses and recovery efforts in the region.

Carbon, who is also the chief executive officer of Metro Bacolod Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MBCCI), said that small businesses may not be able to open up anymore.

On top of that, he said, it will also damage the recovery efforts for Western Visayas, particularly to be able to recover economically this year.