326 OFW’s from UAE returns home

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DAVAO CITY –— Some 348 overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) from Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia are now home.

They compose the fourth batch of repatriation since travel restrictions were declared last month in seven countries, including the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The repatriates arrived at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) in Manila on Sunday morning, July 11, via Philippine Airlines, says the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) by the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) and the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) in Dubai.

OWWA shouldered the cost of the chartered flight while the repatriation was processed in coordination with the Philippine Consulate General in Dubai, a news release on Sunday stated.

Financial assistance equivalent to Ten Thousand Pesos (P10,000.00) was given to the repatriates. Many expressed appreciation and said that they would use the amount to start anew their lives in the country as they reintegrate with the families and communities back home.

The repatriates will undergo facility-based quarantine provided by the Philippine government, in conformity with the health protocols set by the Department of Health (DOH) – Bureau of Quarantine (BOQ) and shall be subjected to RT-PCR Testing for COVID19.

These as there are about 2,000 OFWs and their families from the emirates are eyed for repatriation. They are expected to arrive on July 12, 17, 27 and 30.

The repatriates included 67 pregnant OFWs, 30 with medical cases, six housed at the Bahay Kalinga in Dubai, and two from the Bahay Kalinga in Abu Dhabi.

The rest of the OFWs were those whose flights were canceled or who overstayed.

One of the passengers was a household service worker who sought shelter at the POLO Dubai after chancing upon an OWWA personnel at the airport.

Her employer bought her ticket and left her at the Dubai airport on July 5. She failed to board her flight, which consisted of several layovers and connecting flights.

OWWA will also spend for hotel accommodation and food while the OFWs await their test results.

The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases has allowed the conduct of special commercial flights to bring home OFWs who were stranded in the Middle East and other countries covered by the inbound travel ban.

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