3,000 OFWs stranded in RP amid new Saudi Policy
Posted by Admin on April 9, 2007
Over 3,000 overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) cannot leave for Saudi Arabia because a new government hiring policy requires them to get a “visa attestation” from accredited agencies in that country, the local recruitment industry said Sunday. Vic Fernandez, Philippine Association of Service Exporters Inc. (PASEI) president, said recruitment agencies in Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Bahrain are now discussing the possibility of requesting their governments to adopt the same rule to make foreign workers get the services of accredited agencies in securing visas.
“Many OFWs supposed to be deployed to Saudi Arabia are now cooling their heels in Manila, while their employers seek agreements with Saudi-based recruitment agencies for compliance with this new rule delaying the processing procedure,” he said.
Fernandez said the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), and the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) must act immediately to prevent massive loss of employment opportunities for Filipinos workers.
“This new rule should be further clarified and if possible ‘a status quo’ should be adopted by the embassy of Saudi Arabia in Manila until the matter is taken to the highest diplomatic channels by our Department of Foreign Affairs and the DOLE,” he said.
Thanks to Mayen Jaymalin of The Philippine Star