OWWA repatriates 102 distressed OFWs from Kuwait

A total of 102 distressed Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) from Kuwait arrived at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) on Friday morning, Jan. 20, after they were repatriated by the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA).

Photo: Ariel Fernandez / Manila Bulletin

OWWA Administrator Arnaldo "Arnell" Ignacio accompanied the OFWs as they were welcomed at NAIA Terminal 3 around 6:20 a.m. It was learned that most of the distressed workers were stranded and staying in a shelter at the Philippine Embassy in Kuwait after they ran away from their foreign employers due to alleged abuse and unpaid salaries.

Ignacio said the national government took care of the hotel accommodation and plane ticket of the returning OFWs. He added that the workers will also be given a financial assistance worth P10,000 as they reunite with their families.

Photo: Ariel Fernandez / Manila Bulletin

Ignacio and Department of Migrant Workers (DMW) Undersecretary Hans Leo J. Cacdac flew to Kuwait on Jan. 15 to discuss the safety and protection of OFWs with their Kuwaiti counterparts.

Accordingly, part of the officials' mission was to arrange the immediate repatriation of the distressed OFWs.

The OWWA said that the Philippine Embassy in Kuwait and the Migrant Workers Office (MWO)-Kuwait processed and released the exit visas and travel documents of the OFWs through coordination with the Kuwaiti government. Last Jan. 17, Cacdac returned to the country along with 60 distressed OFWs.