Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on Sunday said the temporary ban on Filipinos going to work in Kuwait is now permanent, intensifying a diplomatic standoff over the treatment of migrant workers in the Gulf nation.
President Rodrigo Duterte said early Sunday morning that the deployment ban of Filipino workers to Kuwait, especially domestic helpers, would “stay permanently.”
“The ban stays permanently. There will be no more recruitment for especially domestic helpers. No more,” Duterte told reporters in his hometown in the southern city of Davao.
The president also urged Filipino blue-collar workers already in Kuwait to come home, as he projected that other jobs would become available for them.
Among the possible future deployment destinations workers could look forward to was China, where some 100,000 English teachers would be needed in the next five years.
There would also be a need for caregivers in countries with aging populations, with Duterte pointing to Japan as one of these possible destination countries.
Furthermore, the president said that the Philippines would need workers because of the bullish economy, and because of the government’s “Build, Build, Build” infrastructure program.
As he made an appeal to Kuwait OFWs’ sense of patriotism, the President said, “please come home.”
“I would like to address to their patriotism: come home. No matter how poor we are, we will survive. The economy is doing good and we are short of our workers,” he said.
According to the Foreign Affairs Department, there were 260,000 Filipinos working in Kuwait, with more than 65 percent of them domestic helpers.
The president also reiterated that he had no ill will towards the Kuwaiti government, nor with the Kuwaiti people. Nonetheless, he hoped that the Filipino workers who chose to remain in Kuwait would be treated humanely
Source Credit: GMA