ECHOING the stand of President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., the Department of Migrant Workers (DMW) on Friday, May 26, 2023, rejected calls to impose an overseas Filipino worker (OFW) deployment ban to Kuwait, which has recently suspended working visa issuances to Filipinos.
In an online media conference from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), DMW Secretary Susan Ople said they do not agree with the call to counter the visa suspension with a deployment ban.
"I agree 100 percent with our President because his foreign policy direction is clear: the Philippines is a friend to all," said Ople.
"The President is right in saying let us not burn bridges," she added.
The long-time OFW advocate said she believes that the issue is nothing more than a misunderstanding between the two countries.
Ople said she is confident that the two sides will eventually reconcile and come to an understanding on the matter.
"I think, in time, there will be mutual understanding on the way forward," she said.
"There is only a need to increase understanding in this situation. It is their decision and we respect their decision," added Ople.
The Kuwaiti government announced the suspension of the issuance of visas to Filipinos supposedly due to several violations committed by the Philippine government in the existing labor agreement.
The suspension has already resulted in at least 815 Kuwait-bound OFWs being unable to depart.
Earlier in the week, Pangasinan Third District Representative Rachel Arenas called for a total ban on the deployment of OFWs to Kuwait, citing numerous violations committed against Filipinos in Kuwait.
On Friday, Marcos said he is not in favor of a deployment ban to Kuwait and described it as an "overreaction" to the issue. (HDT/SunStar Philippines)
Kuwait. (Google Maps)
May 26, 2023
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