Philippines Bans Deployment of New Filipino Workers to Kuwait

15 February, 2018, 07:34 | Author: Brenda Erickson
  • Kuwait's Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Sabah al Khalid Al Sabah attends the Kuwait International Conference for Reconstruction of Iraq in Bayan Kuwait

All new employment departures have been cancelled, and Duterte also said the country would be working with the national airlines to evacuate Filipino workers wanting to leave Kuwait.

Hong Kong's vulnerable domestic workers 03:29Abuse of domestic helpers is tragically common in the Middle East and throughout East Asia., Human Rights Watch accused Qatar of subject migrant workers building stadiums for the 2022 World Cup to life-threatening conditions.A survey found the majority of domestic workers in the city state of Singapore were exploited.

Dado said Kuwait has a draft of the bilateral labor agreement but has not signed it yet, as he added that a positive development from recent events is that Kuwait would be made to negotiate from the strong position that President Rodrigo R. Duterte has taken on the issue.

"I am appealing to the government, help us seek justice for my daughter's death", Eva Demafelis, mother of Joanna Daniela Demafelis, told ABS CBN network after she, her husband, and children arrived in Manila from their hometown in Iloilo, central Philippines on Saturday.

Arman Hernando, head of Migrante-Philippines, a migrant workers' group, said the ban would serve as a wake-up call for the Kuwaiti government to respect Filipino workers.

On Monday, the Philippine government officially enforced a "total ban" on the deployment of Filipino workers to Kuwait.

"The recruitment ban of OFWs to Kuwait will continue until the Philippine government finds the true causes of death of seven OFWs, including the case of Demafelis", said Labour Secretary Silvestre Bello.

The ones now being repatriated are those who availed themselves of the amnesty program for overstaying Filipino nationals that the Kuwaiti government approved last month.

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Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano, who co-chairs the Government Cluster on Overseas Filipino Workers with Bello, said the DFA and DOLE are also coordinating with other government agencies in taking steps to strictly implement the ban on the deployment of new workers to the Gulf state.

On Monday, the Philippines banned its citizens from traveling to work in Kuwait and began to repatriate the thousands of Filipinos already employed there.

About 10 million, or a tenth of the country's population, live and work overseas, making the Filipino diaspora one of the largest in Asia.

Aside from shouldering the cost of the airfare, the Philippine government shall also settle the immigration penalties of overstaying Filipinos.

He added that upon arrival in the country, the returning OFWs will each be given P20,000 (US$400) for livelihood assistance.

"Under global law, Kuwait has the obligation to provide justice for our countrymen", he said.

Kuwait might incur "international responsibility" if it fails to provide legal remedy for the Filipino victims, he said.

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