DAVAO CITY – The National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC) Regional Arbitration Branch 11 here has declared Foodpanda Philippines guilty of illegally terminating the employment of seven delivery riders.

The 31-page decision of the NLRC 11 (Davao region), signed by Labor Arbiter Rovyne Jumao-as, also ordered the company to pay the complainants PHP2.2 million.

Likewise, Foodpanda Philippines was ordered to pay the complainants their respective attorney’s fees amounting to PHP222,346.
 
“As labor tribunals, we ensure that this paramount consideration in upholding the rights of labor should not be lost in the analysis of every attempt to create a working relationship utilizing labor in the guise of contractual freedom, where labor is almost always in the losing end,” read the decision, released to reporters Friday.

The NLRC-11 also assured that labor rights should be “recognized and continuously guaranteed.”

“Labor is still an individual’s daily feat to put food on their family’s table, and because of this they may ever be willing to adjust to their employer’s demands if it means sustainability of their life,” it said.

The complaint was filed by former FoodPanda riders Edmund Deala Carillo, Francis Ghlenn Suplag Costan, Nerjhun Habagat Claramon, Manuel Dolendo Lapiña, Roberto Jabines Gonzaga, Jeffrey Batingan Cabusas, and Nawar Sarip Solaiman.

In July last year, Carillo, who acts as the president and co-founder of the Davao United Delivery Riders Association, Inc., said about 300 riders planned a silent protest against the firm for the low income they have been getting since mid-2020.

He said the silent protest was not finalized when Food Panda released a 10-year suspension against 30 accounts on July 13, 2021. (PNA)