OUT of the 90 cases handled by the National Conciliation and Mediation Board (NCMB)-Davao Region in 2013, only one remains unresolved said a top official of the regional office.

NCMB-Davao director Paciano Murro Jr., in an interview with Sun.Star Davao, said they have resolved all of the 46 preventive mediation cases while they have also settled all of 25 cases under the single entry approach (Sena) program and all nine strike notices.

Murro, however, said that out of the 10 cases under the voluntary arbitration program, they are yet to resolve one remaining case which he did not reveal the involved parties.

"This is a big achievement for us. In fact, malaki nga ang pasalamat ng National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC) sa amin dahil we may have spared them from many cases especially dahil dito sa Sena program, (This is a big achievement for us. In fact, NLRC thanked as a lot since we may have spared them from many cases especially because of the SENA program)" Murro said.

Murro also that the Sena program has been a huge help since it settles simple money claims which was supposed to be handled by the NLRC.

"Sena is a huge help since most of the cases here are easy to settle. And with the Kasambahay law simple money claims can easily be settled since there are already guidelines for house maids or domestic helpers," Murro said.

The NCMB-Davao director explained that preventive mediation cases are those cases when companies and unions experience a collective bargaining agreement (CBA) deadlock.

The party that could file a complaint could either be the management or the union for as long as both parties see any violations on the company policies or labor issues.

"This is where we conduct the validation of issues and then we will try to diagnose the problem during the initial conference. If ever we find solutions, we then offer it as long as it acceptable to both parties," Murro said.

Some cases, however, do not go through the preventive mediation, thus members of unions would file notices of strikes particularly when CBA negotiations collapse while the management could file the notice of lockout.

Murro also explained that in the voluntary arbitration, arbitrators are tasked to interpret and implement CBA provisions, enforce personnel and company policies, identify wage distortion issues, settle productivity incentive disputes and mediate maritime issues particularly concerning seafarers. He also said that there a total of 18 arbitrators in the region.

"Voluntary arbitration is also one of the fastest modes to settle disputes since arbitrators are only given 20 days to resolve an issue after he is provided with all the details of a certain dispute," Murro said.

He added that their agency is not only waiting for complainants to come in their office as they proactively promote labor-management cooperation, institutionalization of grievance machineries and the continuing voluntary arbitration program.