6K BARMM workers to lose jobs

The Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) has started implementing a “phase-out plan” that will slowly remove about 6,000 employees in the regional bureaucracy.

Minister Naguib Sinarimbo of the BARMM Ministry of the Interior and Local Government, the concurrent regional spokesperson, said the last part of the phase-out process is due on December this year.

“There will be no fund for them after December. Those who will be affected will receive separation pay” Sinarimbo told reporters in a huddle here Thursday, adding the affected workers are those who were hired before the conception of BARMM.

“Some workers may be rehired or may stay depending on their qualifications,” he said. “Others may opt for early retirement.”

Most of the 6,000 employees up for retrenchment are from the previous ARMM government’s infrastructure, executive, and legislative branches. Of the total, close to 1,000 are about to retire, another 1,000 are five years below in service, and the rest are mid-level managers.

The Bangsamoro Organic Law’s Section 10, Article 16, states, “officials holding appointive positions shall continue to perform their functions in accordance with the phase-out schedule. Employees in the sectors of health, education, and social welfare shall be absorbed and transferred to the Bangsamoro government.”

It also states that “the affected personnel who will not be absorbed in the positions of the new staffing pattern of the different offices in the Bangsamoro government, whether hired on permanent, temporary, casual, or contractual basis and with appointments attested by the Civil Service Commission, shall be entitled to the applicable retirement, or separation benefits as provided in the Organic Law.”

Sinarimbo said retrenched employees have the option to re-apply after five years on agencies they deem they are fit to work. Momentarily, the affected employees could either apply as consultants or job order workers on the BARMM agency of their choice, he added.

Sinarimbo said exempted from the phase-out plan are employees under the Ministry of Basic, Higher and Technical Education, Ministry of Health, and Ministry of Social Services. (With a report from Noel Punzalan/PNA)