Gov’t repatriates over 300 Filipinos from Kuwait

Over 300 Filipinos were recently repatriated from Kuwait, the DFA said./DFA/

(Eagle News)–Over 300 displaced Overseas Filipino Workers were recently repatriated from Kuwait.

In a statement, the Department of Foreign Affairs said the  314 OFWs were brought home through a  chartered Kuwait Airways flight on June 28 arranged by the Philippine Embassy in Kuwait.

“The Philippine Embassy stands ready to assist our kababayan in Kuwait who wish to be repatriated and reunited with their loved ones back home, despite the travel restrictions both in Kuwait and in the Philippines,”  Chargé d‘Affaires and Consul General Mohd. Noordin Pendosina N. Lomondot said.

The official said  that some of the challenges  the embassy is currently facing related to the repatriation of Filipinos in Kuwait include the continued closure of Kuwait International Airport to commercial passenger flights, and the ongoing restrictions for arriving passengers at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) in Manila.

The restrictions in both airports are part of the respective government’s preventive measures against the spread of the COVID-19 in their countries, the DFA said.

Majority of those who were in the repatriation flight were Visa 18 (private sector) workers who either completed their employment contracts in the middle of the COVID-19 lockdown or lost their jobs during the pandemic.

Their companies originally bought air tickets for the flights of the Filipino workers, but frequent flight cancellations led the repatriates to ask for help from the embassy.

As of now, 2,780 overseas Filipinos have been repatriated from Kuwait since the COVID-19 lockdown began last March.

The Kuwaiti government repatriated 2,466 undocumented and distressed Filipinos from March to June 2020.