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VILLANUEVA: FILL VACANT GOV’T PERMANENT POSTS

Senate Majority Leader Joel Villanueva called on the Marcos administration to finally resolve the persistent problem of unfilled positions in government offices and agencies.

During the Development Budget Coordinating Committee briefing on the 2023 National Expenditure Program in the Senate, Villanueva said that he has been bringing up this issue every year since 2017.

“We’ve said time and again that the government, as the country’s biggest employer, also has the biggest problem filling up these permanent positions. What is even more saddening is that this problem has been happening despite the number of unemployed Filipinos and the proposals to right-size the bureaucracy,” the veteran legislator said.

“Para na po tayong sirang plaka. There has been progressing after we raised this every year since 2017, but it is minimal. We have to do better for the sake of our workers and our bureaucracy,” the seasoned lawmaker said.

“Roughly 1 out of 10 or an equivalent of 170,668 authorized positions in the government remain unfilled.”

The senator underscored that roughly 1 out of 10 or an equivalent of 170,668 authorized positions in the government remain unfilled, based on information from the Department of Budget and Management’s Financial Year 2023 Staffing Summary.

“The government should justify this number of unfilled government positions despite having 642,077 government workers being under the Job Order (JO) and Contract of Service.”

The senator said the government should justify this number of unfilled government positions despite having 642,077 government workers under the Job Order (JO) and Contract of Service (COS), based on Civil Service Commission data as of June 30.

“It pains me that our government is the number one violator of the constitutional guarantee of security of tenure while it fails to fill up vacancies for permanent positions for its offices,” he stressed.

Villanueva is the author of Senate Bill No. 131 or the “Civil Service Security of Tenure Act” which ensures the security of tenure for casual and contractual employees of the government who have rendered exemplary service.

He also authored Senate Bill No. 568, or the “Skills Certificate Equivalency Program Act” which grants civil service eligibility to certified technical-vocational graduates who are holders of National Certificates issued by the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority.

“I have repeatedly asked the government to explain why it fails to fill its authorized permanent positions while also hiring thousands of workers without steady or regular contracts. This is unacceptable more so as the government admits that more Filipinos will be unemployed in the coming years due to the expanding labor force,” Villanueva concluded.

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