Bacolod City councilors Wilson Gamboa, Jr. and Archie Baribar, in an approved Sangguniang Panlungsod (SP) Resolution dated September 1, 2021, called on the Bacolod City Water District (BACIWA) and PrimeWater to immediately reinstate the 60 dismissed employees in compliance with the Civil Service Commission (CSC) Regional Office order dated August 20, 2021.
The said resolution cited that last December 23, 2020, the BACIWA Board of Directors (BOD) issued Resolution No. 172 Series of 2020 declaring 60 employees of BACIWA as “redundant” pursuant to the reorganization provisions of the Joint Venture Agreement (JVA) between BACIWA and the Villar-led PrimeWater.
In a related press statement then, Gamboa, one of the convenors of Amlig Tubig, a citizens’ advocacy group, urged the 60 terminated employees to stand for their rights under the CSC rules despite and above any other provisions of the BACIWA-PrimeWater JVA.
He stressed that the BACIWA BOD does not have the authority to terminate anyone without due process and the termination of the 60 BACIWA employees was totally illegal.
The CSC Regional Office VI heeded the complaint of the 60 terminated employees. In an order number 210015, promulgated last 20 August 2021 and signed by CSC Regional Director Nelson Sarmiento, the BACIWA and PrimeWater “redundancy” claim was rejected and was ordered to reinstate the 60 terminated employees “without loss of seniority and shall be entitled to full pay from the time of their separation until actual reinstatement.”
Gamboa also stressed that the CSC order may be subject to appeal but it is final and executory and the BACIWA and PrimeWater must execute the said order, adding, “Only the CSC can issue an order of termination and not the BOD of Baciwa and Primewater.”/WDJ