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Does Saudi Arabia refuse entry to OFWs inoculated with Chinese-developed vaccines?

Riyadh does not allow people inoculated with Chinese vaccines (jabs that Duterte supporters are pushing) to enter the city. However, those who had Pfizer, Moderna, and other vaccines are welcome.

Overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) on Friday, May 28, were surprised when they got barred from traveling to Saudi Arabia following a deployment suspension by the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA).

Riyadh does not allow people inoculated with Chinese vaccines (jabs that Duterte supporters are pushing) to enter the city. However, those who had Pfizer, Moderna, and other vaccines are welcome.

Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III issued a memorandum requesting POEA to impose a temporary suspension of deployment of OFWs to Saudi Arabia. Due to reports that employers/foreign recruitment agencies of departing OFWs are required to shoulder the costs of the health and safety protocol for COVID-19 and insurance coverage premium upon their entry in the Kingdom.

The labor department will notify when the deployment of OFWs to the said country will resume.

According to Bello, OFWs who had jabs of Chinese vaccines will still self-isolate when they arrive in Saudi.

“OFWs that have been vaccinated, for example by Sinovac, they will be quarantined, the usual and then they can stay,” he said.

Netizens have said that Riyadh will not welcome any travelers inoculated with vaccines made from China like Sinopharm and Sinovac, but will accept those who have taken Pfizer, Astra, and Moderna vaccines.

Saudi seemingly lacks trust in Chinese vaccines based on the current policy.

Reporter Jacque Manabat shared a TikTok video from one of the OFWs explaining what they experienced at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).

Supporters of the incumbent Administration defended Chinese vaccines, saying that having them is better than having none.

These vaccines have relatively low efficacy compared to others made in the US.

Social media personality Jam Magno previously praised the Duterte administration when vaccines came into the country.

Some netizens don’t even feel bad for the OFWs since most of them are Duterte supporters.


Written by paulie walnuts

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