Philippine Embassy Criticised for Failure to Help Distressed OFW Senior Citizens in Saudi

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Dec 25 2010

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia -An affiliate and member organization of Migrant-Middle East in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia today slammed the Philippine embassy and the Philippine Overseas Labor office-Overseas Welfare Workers Administration for not providing assistance to a distress OFW.

Eric Jocson, Chairperson of the Riyadh-based and affiliate of Migrante, the Kapatiran sa Gitnang Silangan (KGS), said he keeps on following to the concerned Philippine embassy officials the request for assistance for distress Overseas Filipino worker (OFW) Irene Sto. Domingo, 70 years old, from Sta. Cruz, Manila.

“Until now, there is no assistance given to the sick OFW is who already a senior citizen,” Jocson added.

On 1984, OFW Sto. Domingo went to Saudi Arabia and worked as a domestic helper but after years of working to her employer; on 2000 when she run away from her employer and became a TNT or undocumented.

On December 17, Migrante-Middle East regional coordinator John Leonard Monterona sent an email to the Philippine Embassy to the attention of POLO-OWWA in Riyadh formally endorsing her case and requesting assistance for her as she has been sick for quite some time now.

We received reports that the subject OFW was not given assistance by the POLO-OWWA allegedly because she is an undocumented,” Monterona on his email to the PHL embassy.

Monterona continued: “This is unfortunate if the reports we have received were true, but we would like to remind the post that irregardless of the status of subject OFW, she should be given proper assistance.”

Monterona said a friend and a fellow OFW Marcelina Calimag is temporarily taking good care of OFW Irene at her accommodation-tailoring shop who is now very worried because her employer will be visiting the tailoring shop in the next days to come.

Jocson said he was able to talked to Labor Attache Albert Valencia regarding this case who promised that she will be given immediate assistance, that was last week.

For humanitarian consideration, the PH embassy and POLO-OWWA should not dilly-dally in providing assistance to OFW Irene who is very sick and could hardly walk and talk, aside from the fact that she is already a senior citizen,” Monterona averred.

Both OFW leaders said if PHL embassy, POLO-OWWA officials could not do their job they better resign so that a qualified and efficient officials from the Philippines will be deployed by the concerned government agencies. # # #

Written by:

John Leonard Monterona

Migrante-ME regional coordinator

Advancing the rights of migrant workers throughout the Middle East