Press Release
August 2, 2010


The government can take over the labor dispute of the Philippine Airlines management and its pilots if the matter cannot be settled with all options already exhausted.

Escudero said the labor secretary can assume jurisdiction over the labor dispute if it shows that there won't be any amicable agreement between the management and the pilots who resigned en masse that left a number of cancelled flights.

The senator issued this statement to clarify an earlier interview that he is proposing a government take-over of PAL's operation.

"The secretary of labor's jurisdiction to mediate between a private company's labor disputes is motu propio when it is imbued with national interest".

He however said that what the government can do at the onset is to act as arbitrator and mediator so that both parties can air their arguments judiciously.

"Let the PAL management and the pilots resolve the matter between them with all internal options available to them. If the series of negotiations prove to be futile, it is only then that the labor secretary should step in".

The take over by the government through the labor secretary only means that a return to work order is issued, in this case to the pilots while the issue is being debated on by the disputing camps".

Escudero is optimistic that this issue can be resolved fairly through dialogues so as not to affect the regular operation of the country's tourism and other business sectors.

"Both camps should resolve this considering all interests at stake. No one should be issuing threats to anyone as this does not help in any arbitration process. Threats of charges in court will not help resolve the matter".

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