Malacañang said Friday the government has allowed special commercial flights to fly in back to the Philippines overseas Filipino workers stranded in countries covered by the inbound flight travel ban imposed to prevent Delta variant transmission.
Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said these special commercial flights will include those OFWs stranded in Oman, United Arab Emirates, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal and Bangladesh.
These special commercial flights, however, are subject to guidelines which includes the creation of a Special Working Group (SWG) to determine the implementing protocols for the special commercial flights, in coordination with the concerned airlines.
The said SWG will be composed of the Department of Health, the Bureau of Quarantine, the Overseas Workers’ Welfare Administration, the Department of Foreign Affairs, the Department of Transportation and its One-Stop Shop, the Philippine Coast Guard and the Department of Tourism.
Likewise, the special commercial flights must have prior approval from the SWG and is exclusive for Filipinos.
The existing guidelines on the implementation of exemptions for the Philippine government and non-Philippine government repatriation, however, will still be followed.
The ban on flights from abovementioned countries is effective until July 15.
As this developed, the IATF also amended its Resolution 124-A which authorizes the Philippine Overseas Labor Offices to allow it to verify the vaccination status of spouses, children, and/ or parents of overseas Filipino workers travelling with them. — Llanesca T. Panti/RSJ, GMA News