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4th batch of 25 OFWs arrive from Kuwait; more arrivals expected

Published February 11, 2018 9:07am A fourth batch of 25 distressed overseas Filipino workers arrived early morning this Sunday from Kuwait.

Super Radyo dzBB reported that the workers arrived at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport on Philippine Airlines flight PR 669 at about 6:30 a.m.

Batches of OFWs have been arriving home amid a deployment ban from the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) in compliance with the order of President Rodrigo Duterte to stop sending workers to Kuwait.

Duterte's order came after receiving reports of "mysterious" OFW deaths in the Gulf state, especially household service workers.

Last Saturday, DOLE Secretary Silvestre Bello III announced that a total deployment ban to Kuwait will be issued on Monday, February 12, 2018, despite negotiations for the lifting of the temporary ban.

Bello said he was instructed by President Duterte to issue the  order on the total deployment ban, separate from a previous order suspending the processing of new employment certificates.

"This time, what the president wanted is a total deployment ban," Bello said.

Several OFWs in Kuwait have been complaining of maltreatment, including non-payment of salaries, rape, verbal and physical abuse that even result in mysterious deaths of Filipinos.

The total deployment ban came after the discovery of the body of a Filipina stuffed in a freezer for over a year.  this is on top of earlier reports on scores of OFW deaths in the Gulf state in 2016 and 2017.

President Duterte had given OFWs in Kuwait 72 hours to decide to go home or stay. But it was not clear when the 72-hour deadline would start.

An estimated 250,000 Filipinos work in Kuwait, 75 percent of which are domestic helpers. Some 300 Filipinos apply for work in Kuwait every day. —LBG, GMA News


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