The umbrella group Bagong Alyansang Makabayan today slammed the Aquino government and its “Aquinomics” as being patently anti-worker and anti-people. The statement came amid nationwide protests commemorating International Labor Day and a day before the Philippines hosts the Asian Development Bank ministerial meeting.
“The Aquino government has opposed any meaningful wage increase, the regulation of prices as well as genuine national industrialization. Aquinomics favors business interests over workers interests. Aquinomics favors deregulation, privatization and further liberalization of the economy. No wonder Aquino’s approval marks on economic issues has gone down consistently,” said Bayan secretary general Renato M. Reyes, Jr.
Bayan also found as most insulting the proposal by the Employers Confederation of the Philippines for a measly P8.00 daily wage hike.
“The P8.00 wage hike proposed by ECOP is most insulting to workers. It is unacceptable. It’s not even enough to pay for the minimum jeepney fare of P8.50 or for extra rice in a carinderia. Government must not even dignify this ludicrous proposal from greedy capitalist employers,” Reyes said.
Meanwhile, Aquino is expected to announce some “good news” during a breakfast with labor leaders in Malacanang this morning.
“We’re not holding our breath. Workers and people are really tired of the promises of good news every labor day. We fear this year won’t be any different. Government will again focus on non-wage benefits while ignoring calls to regulate rising prices of basic commodities, electricity and oil. Aquinomics is also Consuelo de bobo-economics for the workers and people,” Reyes said.
Bayan said that Aquino’s commitment to neo-liberal economics can be seen when it hosts the Asian Development Bank meeting tomorrow at the PICC in Pasay. The militant group has blamed the ADB for many of the current economic policies that it says are oppressive. It cited the power restructuring programs of the EPIRA which were pushed in exchange for ADB loans.
“Aquino will roll out the red carpet for finance ministers and officials of foreign lending institutions tomorrow at the ADB meet. Meanwhile, Aquino can’t even give a lifeline to workers reeling from high prices. The priorities of this government are tilted in favor of big business, big banks and foreign creditors,” Reyes said. ###