- Duterte said that there’s a chance he would expand the deployment ban of OFWs to other countries
- The President imposed the ban on OFW deployment to Kuwait following the recent deaths of Filipinos there
President Rodrigo Duterte said there’s a possibility that he may expand the deployment ban to other countries that are known to maltreat overseas Filipino workers (OFWs).
Duterte made this statement on Thursday: “We are doing an audit now (to) find out the places where we deploy Filipinos and our countrymen suffer brutal treatment and human degradation.”
The president was also quoted in an article by GMA News saying: “The ban will continue and it will extend to other countries. Mahirapan sila, well, humihingi na ako ng tawad sa inyo. Wala akong kaplano na ipadala kayo doon tapos babuyin kayo.” [I apologize to you but I don’t plan to send you (OFWs) there to be maltreated].
Duterte also reiterated his appeal to countries in the middle east to treat OFWs with dignity and respect.
“I repeat, the Filipino is a slave of nobody. The Filipino seeks to work abroad to earn a living so that he can help his family because the economy here, local, cannot absorb the entire workforce who would want to… The only thing that we ask is that you give us the dignity of a human being, you treat us humanely, be tolerant of our cultural differences,” he said.
Duterte imposed the ban on deployment of OFWs to Kuwait following the deaths of seven Filipinos which are now under investigation, including that of the OFW whose body was found stuffed in a freezer.
For its part, Kuwait sought to mend diplomatic ties by inviting Duterte to visit, its state news agency KUNA said on Monday.
However, the Philippine labour ministry demands Kuwait must assure safety of Filipinos first before the ban can be lifted.