Apo Cement to lay off workers
CEBU CITY - The suspension of Apo Land and Quarry Corp. (ALQC) following the massive landslide in Naga City in September has adversely affect the operations of its mother company, Apo Cement Corp.
Apo Cement spokesperson Chito Maniago said the company is now constrained to implement the temporary lay-off of up to 30 percent of its employees and a reduction of around 40 percent of its contractors as a result of the ongoing suspension.
Maniago said a formal notice has already been filed with the Department of Labor and Employment in Central Visayas (DOLE7) informing the latter of the company’s decision.
However, Apo Cement is still hopeful that the situation in Naga will improve, and with the support of both the local and national government authorities the ALQC will be allowed to immediately resume its operations and further enable ALQC to restore safety in the critical areas with the approval of its proposed Hazard Reduction Plan.
“Apo Cement has been in Cebu for nearly a century already. We have fostered our solidarity and ‘malasakit’ (concern) to our communities for several decades now, but these are extremely challenging times and we need to make these hard decisions,” Maniago said.
He said both Apo Cement and ALQC have been helping the Naga city government in providing financial support, food, as well as shelter to the dislocated families and individuals in the different evacuation centers since the landslide incident.
“While we put all efforts in ensuring the needs of the community come first above everything else, and while we have also been very transparent in answering all and any questions, it is unfortunate that some sectors and individuals cast doubt on our integrity, which diverts our attention from the current tasks at hand,” Maniago said.
He said Apo Cement is optimistic that all concerned individuals and organizations can focus on doing everything to get Naga back on its feet.
Last September 21, Department of Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Roy Cimatu ordered the suspension of operations of ALQC a day after the landslide that claimed the lives of 78 people including children. (Luel Galarpe)