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Pinoy Abroad

Kuwait OFWs lament lack of social distancing at OWWA shelter

Filipino migrant workers who returned home from Kuwait amid the coronavirus pandemic lamented the lack of social distancing measures at the temporary shelter provided to them by the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA).

According to a 24 Oras report by Vonne Aquino on Sunday, the Filipinos from Kuwait were brought to the OWWA’s halfway home in Pasay City while authorities finalized their reservations at different hotels.

“Nag-isolate kami sa Kuwait lahat-lahat, inasikaso kami, [may] social distancing, tapos pagdating dito sa Pinas dito sa OWWA shelter, ganito ‘yung nangyari sa’min: dikit dikit kami, parang sardinas,” alias “Eric” said in a video he took at the cramped shelter.

The halfway home was so overcrowded that some of them had to sleep on plywood planks or in the hallway.

“Nalaman namin na may dumating na taga-ibang bansa, from Dubai ba 'yun or Korea, na pinaghahalo-halo doon sa baba. E siyempre hindi natin alam e what if isa doon positive?” Eric told GMA News.

OWWA Administrator Hans Leo Cacdac confirmed that the video taken by Eric was at the agency’s shelter but said the concerned workers had already been transferred to hotels.

“We are now observing social distancing measures. It's just that no'ng panahon na 'yun gano’n ang nangyari, doon sila nailagay sa isang room. Siguro naparami lang ang in-assign sa isang room but we've corrected that and those who are in that same video are already booked in different hotels,” he said. — Julia Mari Ornedo/DVM, GMA News