The Regional Conciliation and Mediation Branch (RCMB) XI successfully resolved two (2) labor disputes in July 2021, upholding peaceful industrial relations between Musahamat Farm, Inc. and its two (2) labor unions.

On 01 June 2021, Musahamat Workers Labor Union-1-ALU filed a Notice of Strike against the management alleging unfair labor practice, specifically refusal to bargain.

The parties have yet to start their negotiations for a new Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) after the existing agreement lapsed on 01 March 2021.

In the initial conference, management denied refusal to bargain claims and insisted that it simply needed time to prepare to negotiate.

Union accepted management’s explanation and urged the latter to commence bargaining.

Management, however, failed to appear at the second conciliation conference which pushed the union to conduct strike vote balloting. 

At the third conciliation conference, Supervising Labor and Employment Officer Nancy L. Lasquite underscored to the management the desire of the union to begin negotiations for their CBA.

Management concurred with the union and the parties agreed to proceed with the initial CBA negotiation at the next conference.

On 14 July 2021, parties agreed to amicably settle the Notice of Strike case with parties laying the foundation for the ground rules of the CBA negotiations.

Moreover, parties agreed to set the first round of negotiations in the first week of August 2021.

A Preventive Mediation case involving Musahamat Farm, Inc. was also resolved with the RCMB XI.

Musahamat and the HKJ-3 Workers Labor Union agreed to settle the labor dispute following the agreement of management to honor CBA provisions. Specifically, the management agreed to provide additional employees or pay overtime premium to workers rendering overtime work.

Management also agreed to the conversion of unused sick leave and vacation leave credits for 2021 to cash by covered employees. The converted leave credits shall be paid in eight installments.

Parties also agreed to submit unresolved issues to the grievance machinery as provided for in the CBA.

The Preventive Mediation case was filed by the union against Musahamat over non-compliance of the management on the various CBA provisions on 29 April 2021.

Estimated monetary package of the settlement amounting to P512,512.00 will benefit the 154 members of HKJ-3 Workers Labor Union. 

Musahamat Farm Inc. is a corporation engaged in planting and marketing of fresh Cavendish bananas. It holds office at 9th Floor, Pryce Tower Condominium, J.P. Laurel Avenue, Davao City. Farm 1 is located at Barangay Tandangua, Pantukan, Davao de Oro.

Farm 3 is located at Barangay Piansay Kingking, Pantukan, Davao de Oro. The company is represented by its General Manager Ibrahim Hamdy Nawwar. It has a total workforce of 233.

HKJ-3 Workers Labor Union, an independent union, is the sole and exclusive bargaining agent of the 154 rank-and-file employees in Musahamat Farm, Inc. ‘s Farm 3. It is headed by its Union President Dionesio Gultia.

Musahamat Workers Labor Union-1-ALU, an affiliate of the Associated Labor Unions (ALU), is a legitimate labor organization duly registered with the Department of Labor and Employment. It holds its office at 3rd Floor, ALU Building, cor. Roxas Ave., and Padre Faura St., Davao City, and is represented by Union President Erlino S. Cosio. It has a total union membership of 110 employees.

END/ Gillian Pearl L. Guerrero with reports from Gary B. Bonghanoy