It will be recalled that our Trustee Banks have refused
to accept our instructions to release the retirement benefits/equity of our members who are already entitled to receive their
retirement benefits/equity under the plan. The decision not to release the said
retirement benefits/equity was a direct result of the dissension that occurred within our ranks and the fact that there is
no sufficient cash in the banks to cover all pending claims unless some assets of the fund are liquidated and the proceeds
thereof will be used to settle all existing claims. The non-release of the retirement
benefits/equity is one of the foremost issues being resolved before the Trial Court of Makati City,
Branch 66, which case has been pending for quite a long time to the prejudice of the vast majority of our members.
In the meantime, the retirement benefits of certain
participants became past due as it continues to accumulate because of the growing number of qualified claimants, which up
to this date remain unpaid and outstanding. Mindful of the urgent financial needs
of everyone, at least 2 major groups, specifically those involved in the said case pending before the RTC of Makati City Branch
66, have finally agreed to set aside their differences and discuss ways on how to settle all existing claims taking into account
whatever cash the Fund has in its account with the trustee banks.
One of the key issues to be resolved is the manner
of distribution. Considering the limited cash on hand, these groups have identified
two (2) ways of making the distribution. The first involves the prioritizing
the release of the claims of those who have reached the retirement age of 60 or those who have died already. The rest will have to wait until there will be adequate cash to answer all the other claimants. The second way is to distribute equally among all claimants a portion of available cash. The amount to be distributed shall represent a percentage of their total claims. In view of the foregoing, these groups deemed it best to present the said issue to the general membership
to resolve the problem through the holding of a referendum. The subject of the
said referendum will be the manner of distribution of equity/retirement benefits categorized under the following options:
OPTION A :
Prioritize the payment in
FULL, less any loan obtained, all retirement of bona fide claimants under the retirement plan who reached the of SIXTY (60)
years or have died as long as there are funds available in excess of the operating fund needed to administer the Fund, provided
that if ALL the assets of the Fund are sold, then all the participants shall get their full equity, regardless of age.
OPTION B :
Distribute among ALL
the participants, regardless of age, an equitable percentage of their equity
taking into account the available cash on hand after deducting the amount needed for the operation and administration of the
Fund, and provided that the equity of those participants, who cannot withdraw their equity without being taxed, shall be set
aside and kept intact until the said participant opt to withdraw the same.
The option that will get the majority vote, i.e. 50 votes + 1, shall
be the manner by which the claims shall be distributed and will be binding against all member.
We encourage everyone to take part in this process. The result will be
submitted to the Judge handling the RTC Makati City Case for approval, who will thereafter order the trustee banks to release
the retirement benefits/equity in accordance to the manner decided by the majority of the general assembly.
The referendum is considered merely as an allocation of the cash, part liquidation
of the assets of the Retirement Fund for the sole objective of settling the claims and is not an amendment of the Retirement
Benefit Plan. The foremost consideration of the process is to bring an end to
the delay in the release of retirement benefits/equity to all plan participants.
Let us work for the success of the referendum.
It is hoped that this process will further foster concord and peace that will ultimately resolve all controversies
and animosity between the 2 groups for the greater benefit of all plan participants.
The date and venue of the referendum will be announced as soon as they are
finalized by the ELECOM. In the meantime, please update the PPRB Office of your
contact numbers and e-mail address for other announcements. For your information
and guidance, representatives of both groups will entertain any and all questions you may have concerning the referendum and
the release of the payment to all claimants.
Thank you very much.
Very truly yours,
ELMER F. PEŅA