MANILA — The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines – Episcopal Commission on Migrants and Itinerant People (CBCP -ECMI) is calling for the imposition anew of the deployment ban of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) to Kuwait.
Aside from the banning of Filipino workers, CBCP-ECMI chair, Balanga Bishop Ruperto Santos urged the government to compel Kuwait to implement the memorandum of agreement signed by both countries that will give protection to OFWs.
This came after a Filipina worker was allegedly raped by a Kuwaiti police officer shortly after she arrived in the Gulf state.
“Both governments must see to it that the suspected rapist-in-uniform must be prosecuted, punished; Justice must be served to our con national. All necessary assistance and help should be extended to her,” the Bataan prelate said in an interview over Church-run Radio Veritas on Friday.
“And we must be ready to enforce deployment ban, as she was (the) second victim after the brutal death of Constancia Dayag,” he added.
Santos noted that the recent case of abuse on the OFW is a clear violation of the agreement signed by the Philippines and Kuwait, which supposed ensured protection for the rights of Filipino workers.
“As our Filipina household service worker is raped, it is a clear violation of the agreement between our country and Kuwait for the protection of OFWs,” he said.
“The Kuwait government must show political will to ensure the safety and security of our OFWs, and rights are promoted and respected,” added the CBCP-ECMI head.
He also pushed for the prosecution of the 22-year-old suspect, Fayed Naser Hamad Alajmy.
Earlier, the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) said it remains open to the possibility of the reimposition of the deployment ban to Kuwait due to Dayag’s case, who died last May 14 with her body reportedly having various contusions and hematoma as well as signs of sexual abuse.
The government is still waiting for the result of the autopsy conducted by the National Bureau of Investigation so that they will know on what action to be taken next.
Last year, the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) imposed a four-month total deployment ban to Kuwait upon the directives of President Duterte amid the continued abuses and maltreatment of OFWs.
After its lifting in May 2018, Manila and Kuwait City entered into a memorandum of agreement on the deployment and protection of OFWs in the host country.
The agreement provides for the establishment of a special police unit that will assist the Philippine Embassy in administering rescue operations and extending assistance to OFWs in need. Ferdinand Patinio / PNA – northboundasia.com