The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) said it is coordinating with other government agencies to help some 4,000 to 5,000 stranded overseas Filipinos workers (OFWs) in Metro Manila to go back to their families in Visayas and Mindanao.
“Nagpapasalamat tayo sa DOTr (Department of Transportation) and DILG (Department of the Interior and Local Government). Nakikipag-coordinate tayo sa kanila ngayon para makapagsagawa tayo ng tinatawag na “mercy flights or voyages” para makauwi na po sa kanilang home provinces ‘yung mga stranded (OFWs) dito sa Manila na nakakumpleto na ng 14-day quarantine (We thank the DOTr and DILG. We are coordinating with them so we can have the so-called “mercy flights or voyages” that will help stranded OFWs return to their home provinces, especially those who have completed their 14-day quarantine),” OWWA Administrator Hans Leo Cacdac said in a telephone interview during a Laging Handa press briefing.
Cacdac also reported that 600 Filipino workers from Kuwait are set to arrive on Tuesday.
“We will all transport them to an accommodation facility and take care of them until such time that they are able to return to their regions because many of them are from Visayas and Mindanao,” he said.
He added that they are also providing food assistance to seafarers and land-based workers, who are also stranded in the National Capital Region (NCR).
“Maraming marino within NCR na hindi nakaalis at stranded sa mga (Many seafarers are within NCR, they were not able to leave and are stranded in) boarding houses, dormitories, bed spacing facilities, etc, so tinutulungan po natin sila (we are helping them). These also include land-based workers, like those OFWs working as household workers who were not able to leave because of the coronavirus disease 2019 crisis,” he said.
So far, Cacdac said OWWA has extended assistance to around 6,000 stranded OFWs who were affected by the pandemic. (PNA)