Gatchalian suspends business permit of company who paid worker in coins

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 30) — Valenzuela City Mayor Rex Gatchalian ordered the suspension of the business permit of the company that paid the wages of one of its employees in low-denomination coins.

In a meeting on Wednesday, Gatchalian, complainant Russel Manosa and NexGreen Enterprises proprietor Jasper Cheng So discussed the issue concerning the incident and other matters about the company.

On June 28, Gatchalian met with the complainant and a representative of NexGreen after Manosa revealed that his salary for two days amounting to ₱1,056 was paid in five- and 10-centavo coins. 

Gatchalian said meeting with a company representative "won't cut it" and said he would "get to the bottom" of the issue.

During Wednesday's meeting, So said they didn't mean to give Manosa's wages in coins, and that they were supposed to be donated. But Gatchalian didn’t buy So's explanation while Manosa said he believed it was done intentionally.

"Sinadya po ‘yun [They meant to do it]," he told Gatchalian at the meeting.

"Hindi tayo aabot sa ganito kung binayaran niyo ako ng maayos," Manosa said, addressing So.

[Translation: If you had just paid me correctly, we wouldn't be here.]

So apologized to Manosa, which the latter accepted.

But NexGreen’s troubles didn’t end there. During the meeting, it was revealed that the company owes Manosa over ₱55,000 in non-payment of overtime pay and underpayment of salary, among others.

Apart from this, the mayor's office also said NexGreen "acted in violation of the following":

- Provisions of the mayor's permit

- Article 19 of the Civil Code of the Philippines in relation to Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Circular No. 537 Series of 2006, when it paid its worker his salary in coins of small denomination more than the limit allowed by law

- Provisions of the Labor Code when it failed to pay the correct minimum wage, non-payment of overtime pay, non-payment of night shift differential, non-payment of holiday pay, and

- Provisions of other legislation for non-coverage of SSS, PhilHealth and Pag-IBIG fund.

The mayor said the notice of suspension would be delivered to the company within the day.

"After which you will be given 15 days na i-rectify or itama ang mga mali na nakalagay doon, kung hindi mare-revoke ‘yung business permit niyo," he said.

[Translation: After which you will be given 15 days to rectify or correct what is wrong there, otherwise your business permit will be revoked.]

Gatchalian also said the Department of Labor and Employment would be notified, and certain criminal issues would have to be discussed with the agency as well.