A TOTAL of 1,240 Filipinos have so far been flown back home from Kuwait by Philippine Airlines (PAL) since President Rodrigo Duterte called for the repatriation of Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) suffering from maltreatment from their employers.

Last Feb. 23, 190 OFWs arrived at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 1 on board PAL flight PR669. They were welcomed by Hans Leo Cacdac, administrator of the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA).

PAL operates four flights a week between Manila and Kuwait using the 363-seater Airbus A330.

Since Feb. 11, PAL has flown hundreds of distressed OFWs endorsed by the embassy. From Feb. 15 to 23, a total of 730 OFWs processed by the Philippine embassy were flown home by PAL, free of charge.

Coordination between the Philippine Embassy in Kuwait, Department of Foreign Affairs, Department of Labor and Employment, OWWA and PAL enabled the homesick Filipinos to reunite with their families.

Upon arrival at the NAIA Terminal 1, the OFWs received P5,000 cash from DFA and another P5,000 check from OWWA, who will also be providing transportation to their final destinations in the provinces.

The government’s repatriation program for Kuwait OFWs has been extended up to April. (PR)