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Duterte fires Labor Usec. Maglunsod

President Rodrigo Duterte has fired Labor Undersecretary Joel Maglunsod, dzBB's Tuesday Niu reported on Dobol B sa News TV on Wednesday.

Duterte made the announcement in his speech in front of rebel returnees on Tuesday in Catarman, Northern Samar.

The President was quoted as saying that labor strikes are affecting the country's economy.

Maglunsod, a former Kilusang Mayo Uno member, is the Undersecretary for Labor Relations of the Department of Labor and Employment.

He is one of the four officials endorsed by the Left who were appointed by Duterte after he assumed office in June 2016.

Duterte appointed former University of the Philippines professor Judy Taguiwalo and former Anakpawis Representative Rafael Mariano as secretaries of social welfare and agrarian reform departments, respectively.

Taguiwalo and Mariano, however, failed to secure the nod of the Commission on Appointments, a body composed of select congressmen and senators, last year.

Former Gabriela party-list Representative Liza Maza, meanwhile, resigned in August as she protested the cancellation of peace talks with the communist rebels and the possible return to power of the Marcoses.

“Joel Maglunsod pinaalis ko. Pinagbigyan ko sila noong bago ako,” Duterte said.

“Eh ‘yung mga ideology niyo. Pero in the long run, gusto nila pati sila magdala ng gobyerno. Makipag-away ka sa akin, makipag-barilan ka tapos ngayon sabihin mo kasama tayo sa gobyerno, itong mga powers na ‘to. Kalokohan ‘yan,” he said.

Sought for comment, Maglunsod said he was unaware of the President’s announcement.

“Hindi ko alam ‘yon. I-check ko pa po,” he said.

In his speech, Duterte criticized KMU anew for leading strikes that “will paralyze the economy.”

A former Anakpawis party-list representative, Maglunsod was KMU vice chairperson for Mindanao prior to joining the Duterte government.

“Kung mag-strike sila nang mag-strike, sabihin mo sa kanila strike sila nang strike, they willl paralyze the economy. ‘Pag wala ng pera ang mga trabahante tapos magkagulo, mapipilitan ako. Ayaw ko. Pero kung papasukan na, huhulihin ko lahat ‘yang Mayo Uno,” Duterte said.

Duterte made the same accusation on September 11 when he blamed workers going on strike for the lack of foreign investors in the country.

KMU, however, said that resorting to strike is a right of workers and such strikes are a result of the President’s supposedly unfulfilled promise of ending contractualization. —KBK/KG/MDM, GMA News