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Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte meets Overseas Filipino Workers.

PHOTO BY ARCHIVE


OFW Department to launch in 2019, says Duterte

 

MANILA — Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said he is looking to establish the Department of OFW to handle matters concerning Filipino migrant workers before the end of the year.

Duterte made the promise before thousands of former and current Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) at the event dubbed as “Pasasalamat sa OFW” in Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City on Friday (July 12). The event was spearheaded by Gemma Sotto of the Global Police Community Relations International.

Aside from the new department, Duterte said he would also build hospitals for Filipino migrant workers. Senator Christopher “Bong” Go filed the bill for the creation of the new department.

There are more than 10 million Filipinos working overseas. Currently, several government agencies are handling the concerns of OFWs, among them are the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration, Overseas Workers Welfare Administration, and the Department of Foreign Affairs.

Bishops support OFW Department

The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines-Episcopal Commission on Migrants and Itinerant People (CBCP-ECMI) on Saturday (July 13) said the group supports Duterte’s OFW Department plan.

“We at CBCP-ECMI, support and encourage the creation of an OFW Dept. With this, the welfare and wellbeing of our OFWs will specifically be attended,” said CBCP-ECMI chairman Bishop Ruperto Santos.

The Catholic prelate is hoping that the Department would be a “one-stop-shop”, where the OFWs would be able to transact for their employment.

“With OFW Dept, we know who is personally responsible for them, no more finger pointing, anyone or those amiss of their duties will specifically be known and be prosecuted,” Santos said, adding that he hopes that the department will be established soon. ICA/Expat Media/PNA

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