BY WILLIAM DEPASUPIL, TMT, Manila Times, April 13, 2018
THE Department of Labor and Employment (DoLE) will put up more shelter houses for overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) in Kuwait waiting for their repatriation to the Philippines.
“We need to have at least two or more [shelter houses]to make our OFWs comfortable as they await repatriation,” Labor Undersecretary Jacinto Paras said before boarding a flight to Kuwait on Wednesday night.
“As it is, the existing shelter can only accommodate 250 to 300 people and there are about a thousand or more already living there,” he added.
The Labor department, in cooperation with the Department of Foreign Affairs, has so far repatriated 3,930 of the 8,727 Filipinos who are either staying in the Gulf state illegally or have been abuse by their employers.
Paras headed a labor team that would look into the real situation of OFWs in Kuwait, particularly Filipina household service workers in connection with the still to be signed Kuwait-Philippine draft memorandum of understanding (MoU) that will give added protection to Filipino workers.
The Labor official said “there is a need to check the real situation of Filipino domestic workers in Kuwait before any bilateral agreement can be signed by the Philippine government and Kuwait.”
President Rodrigo Duterte had said that he will review the draft agreement before it is signed.
The President has maintained that the proposed agreement must provide the assurance from the Kuwait government that maltreatment and abuses on domestic workers will stop.
He had also called for justice for the death of Joanna Demafelis, whose body was found inside a freezer in an abandoned apartment in Kuwait.