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LOOK: More than 100 OFW spend the night at NAIA

OWWA clarifies that OFW applicants are not under their care

More than 100 OFW applicants who are waiting for a flight back to their provinces spent their night outside the departure gate of Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 2.

These applicants rushed to NAIA when they heard that there were flights back to Mindanao but unfortunately, they came late.

They had no choice but to spend the rest of the night outside the terminal.

These applicants were caught in the lockdown due to COVID-19. For this reason, they were not able to finish processing their papers and were not able to fly to their job destinations.

For the past weeks, these OFW applicants have been staying at the accommodations provided by their respective agencies.

However, in an interview with ABS-CBN, Melissa Banaag, an OFW applicant said that their agency cannot support them anymore.

“Wala na pong kameng ano dun sa accommodation, pinapauwi na po kame ng agency. Wala na daw sila mapakain,” Banaag said.

Photos of this situation circulated online that’s why the netizens expressed their dismay in the authorities.

They called out Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) for being irresponsible. They also blamed OWWA Deputy Administrator Mocha Uson for being so “chill” despite the condition of these OFWs.

Meanwhile, OWWA clarifies that OFW applicants are not covered by the agency. But, they are willing to help these stranded applicants go back to their respective provinces.

Hans Cacdac, OWWA administrator, said that the recruitment agencies of these applicants will also be held accountable for this situation. OWWA will file a complaint with the Philippine Overseas Employment Agency (POEA).

“Mag-aarrange kami ng flight sa kanila kahit wala kaming obligasyon na bayaran yung flight nila kasi ang pondo ng OWWA, para sa mga OFW. For me this is human trafficking,” Cacdac said.

“Kaya we will charge them for violating their obligation as a recruitment agency. they should be taking care of their applicants,” Cacdac added.

Written by Neil

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