Labor sector pledges support to BARMM’s war on coronavirusMay 3, 2021
In the photo: Personnel of the Bangsamoro labor ministry got vaccinated Saturday at the sideline of the labor summit in Cotabato City. (Contributed photo)
COTABATO CITY — Private companies in the Bangsamoro region have manifested support for the war on COVID-19 and assured to ensure safety of employees from the disease through corporate initiatives.
Representatives from different firms and large-scale entrepreneurs manifested willingness to help push the government’s anti-COVID-19 initiatives in the region during Friday’s start of the two-day Bangsamoro Labor Summit here that culminated Saturday.
Speakers from various firms who participated in the summit, among them from the Cotabato Light and Power Company Incorporated (CLPC) and the Lamsan Trading in Maguindanao province, said the pandemic has stymied company output and productivity of employees.
Anna Lea Lee Nataño, human resource manager of the CLPC, said they have formulated business continuity plans. These plans are essential in coping up with the challenges due to the pandemic that they have to surmount.
“We have full management support to government efforts of addressing this COVID-19 problem,” she said.
Nataño said the CLPC now has a company maxim “business as usual under new normal” to motivate all of them in the company. It is also an assurance of unhampered service to the communities within their franchise areas, she added.
Speakers lamented that importation of raw materials and transport of products to bulk buyers and to faraway trading centers have drastically been constrained as a result of the pandemic. This constrains the earnings partly intended for the benefits of the labor sector.
Participants to the summit also narrated new practices meant to ensure the safety of employees through stringent health protocols and mandatory wearing of biohazard masks and face shields in workplaces.
Regional Labor Minister Romeo Sema told reporters Saturday the support from private companies has elated him and other officials of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).
The labor sector has also pledged their support,” he revealed.
“All of these augurs well with the efforts of BARMM’s chief minister, Ahod Ebrahim, to address squarely the COVID-19 problem besetting the autonomous region,” Sema said.
The Ministry of Labor of Employment, the event organizer, held the closing program of the labor summitat the Shariff Kabunsuan Cultural Complex in the 32-hectare Bangsamoro capitol center in Cotabato City.
Workers from the Ministry of Health and the Integrated Provincial Health Office in Maguindanao led by physicians Ameril Usman and Elizabeth Samama, respectively, gave employees of MOLE-BARMM anti-COVID-19 Sinovac vaccines in a makeshift clinic inside the function facility.
Correct a fallacy
Usman, director-general of MOH-BARMM, urged reporters covering the summit to help them correct a fallacy that Muslims observing the Ramadhan should avoid getting jabs due to religious implications.
The Ramadhan season, where Muslims fast from dawn to dusk for one lunar cycle, lasting for 28 to 29 days, as a religious obligation, started last April 13.
“The Darul Iftah has declared that it is alright for Muslims to be vaccinated during the Ramadhan and that these vaccines are `halal,’ meaning not forbidden,” said Usman, a Muslim of mixed Maguindanaon and Iranun lineage.
The Bangsamoro Darul Iftah, also known as the House of Opinions, is a bloc of Islamic theologians, among them graduates of religious schools in the Middle East and North Africa.
Sema said he is grateful to labor organizations and private companies in the Bangsamoro region for having pledged their support.