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Pinoy Abroad

11 abused OFWs in Riyadh seek help to go home


Eleven OFWs in Riyadh are asking for help to escape their employer whom they accused of abusing them and locking them inside a room for their minor mistakes, GMA News' reported on State of the Nation with Jessica Soho on Thursday night.

The OFWs also said their employer failed to honor their contracts and has confiscated their documents, including their iqama or work permit.

Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) Administrator Hans Leo Cacdac said their welfare officers have contacted the OFWs and will reach out to their employer.

"Kung talagang nais na ng mga workers na umuwi ay ia-arrange na rin na bibigyan sila ng exit visa," Cacdac said

Families of the OFWs will meet with Philippine Overseas Employment Administration officials on Friday to contact the Philippine counterpart of the Filipinos' employment agency.

More cases of abuse sprung up in Kuwait, including that of household service workers who were hit with a baseball bat and whose employer took their passport away from them.

The recently-signed memorandum of understanding (MOU) between Kuwait and the Philippines reinforced the rules against physical abuse and withholding of documents from foreign service workers.

As such, Cacdac said the Philippines will keep coordinating with police and Kuwait's Ministry of Labor to serve justice to these OFWs.

"Kakausapin yung employer, 'yung Kuwaiti agency, tayo naman yung Philippine agency at 'yung worker, para maisagawa ang pagsagip," he said.

The MOU with Kuwait will be used as template for future labor agreements with other Gulf states. —Rie Takumi/KBK, GMA News