CHIEF Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo, concurrent presidential spokesman, yesterday said investors have nothing to worry about the contract reviews being done by the government as President Duterte respects the sanctity of contracts.
Panelo said the President will only make exceptions if onerous and disadvantageous provisions are found in the contracts.
“Let me allay the fears of foreign investors as well as Filipino businessmen. You don’t have to worry about the review. If there is nothing wrong with your contracts, there is nothing to worry about. The President will certainly respect the sanctity of contracts except only when from the very provisions it appears to be contrary to law, contrary to public interest and public policy,” Panelo said.
Some businessman had raised concerns about the contract reviews done by the government amid the President’s being critical of the Ayala Group of company.
Panelo has said that the government will review a lease agreement between Ayala and the University of the Philippines for a piece of land in Quezon City which now called the Technohub.
This followed the review of the water concessionaire agreements between the government and Manila Water Services Inc. and Maynilad Water Services inc. The Ayalas operate Manila Water.
Duterte ordered the crafting of new water contracts for the two private water concessionaires after government lawyers found the previous agreements onerous and disadvantageous.
Amid reports of the government review of the UP-Ayala land lease, Technohub employees, particularly BPO workers, have expressed apprehension over losing their jobs.
“Sa mga nangyayari ngayon at sa mga nababasa mo, nakakatakot na baka isang araw magising ka na lang na wala ka na palang mapapasukan kasi ipinasara na (With what is happening now and based on what you read in the newspapers, it it has become scary to wake up in the morning and find out that you are already jobless),” Virmel Villareal, 31, who works at Synnex-Concentrix, a BPO company at Tehnohub, said.
“Nananawagan po kami kay Pangulong Duterte, huwag naman sana kaming mawalan ng trabaho. Napakahirap mawalan ng trabaho sa panahong ito (We are appealing to President Duterte: please do not let us lose our jobs),” Virmel appealed.
Paula Biazon, another Synnex-Concentrix staff, shared the same fear.
Biazon expressed hope that the looming investigation on the Technohub deal will not affect the workers.
Ma. Cristina dela Vega, a call center agent working at Convergys, appealed to Malacañang to give Ayala Land a chance to explain.
Ferdinand Abelardo, another call center agent at Convergys, also expressed hope and appealed to the President to consider the workers in its investigation on Technohub.