Former president claims successor is ‘playing the victim’
By Dominique Gabriel G. Bañaga
The Board of Directors of Vallacar Transit Incorporated (VTI), parent company of the Ceres bus liner, recently filed a temporary restraining order against Leo Rey Yanson, who was earlier ousted as company president and was replaced by his older brother, Roy Yanson.
The former president is accused of coordinating with “cohorts” to cause disruption to company operations. Last week, four Philippine Agricultural, Commercial, and Industrial Workers Union-Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (PACIWU-TUCP) officials were accused of attempting to launch a “fake strike” against VTI.
According to reports, the officials in question were identified as PACIWU-TUCP Executive Vice President Rey dela Torre, Board Members Juvy Diama and Raymond Roldan, and Chapter President Franny Santarin.
“We had previously appealed to Leo Rey to desist from forcing employees to defy new management’s actions to the extent of directing them to go on strike or demean us through posters of sympathy for him and his group,” the group said in a statement. “He has even asked union officers to feign a strike by paying-off employees to do nothing and pretend that a strike is taking place when there is and continues to be no reason for doing so.”
They also addressed the restraining order the ousted official filed and later withdrew.
“His recent acts plainly manifest the little regard he has of the law and his use of devices and schemes, whether lawful or not, to leverage his position to harm the company,” the group affirmed.
The board also claims the former president’s actions “have placed the lives of VTI employees in jeopardy.”
Meanwhile, Leo Rey Yanson responded to the matter yesterday morning, claiming his successor as company president is “playing the victim.”
In a statement emailed to members of the media, the former company president claimed, by filing a restraining order against him, they are confusing the public and making it appear that he was the one disrupting company operations.
“Ever since I became president, I would always [fought] my siblings during board meetings to increase the salary of everyone who worked for us,” Yanson stated. “Do they begrudge me from lifting up the livelihood of our people even if they themselves get so much money already?”
The former president said his siblings’ plan has been in the works since last year and, despite being ousted from the post, he affirmed, all 15 company branches and union leadership recognize him as the lawful president.
Earlier, Olivia Yanson, matriarch of the Yanson clan penned an open letter calling on her children to end their attempts at taking over bus terminals.
“The past weeks have been difficult for me in my old age—I was supposed to be resting and relaxing—instead, you took control of our head office [in] Mansilingan and made yourselves the new officers of the company,” she stated.
“You talked about preserving your father’s legacy—this is not what your father and I wanted,” she said.
The current company president, meanwhile, also issued a statement, where he called for unity between the new administration and employees.
While VTI chief financial officer Celina Yanson-Lopez earlier accused the former company president of unlawful withdrawals amounting to “millions of pesos,” the recently-installed company president claimed his younger brother had plans of breaking up the company, which he opposed.
“Let me assure everyone: I will not agree to the suggestion [by] our younger brother, Leo Rey, to just break up this company, which my dad built from scratch and leave its fate on a toss coin between us,” he stressed. “Leo Rey wanted to divide dad’s company.”
“Leo Rey probably thinks this is a popularity contest where the winner is the most popular and deserves a share of the empire,” the company president added. “This explains why he, together with several others, continue trying to disrupt operations by coercing our employees to support a fake strike and preventing our security agency from doing their jobs.”
Yanson went on to assure a commitment to continue building the company./DGB, WDJ