More than 11,800 quarantined OFWs have so far returned home, says Palace

President Harry Roque holds a virtual presser on Tuesday, May 26, 2020. (Screengrab from PCOO/Courtesy PCOO)


(Eagle News) – More than 11,800 overseas Filipino workers have been returned to their home provinces and cities after President Rodrigo Duterte’s directive to his officials to get them home immediately.

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said that 11,848 of the repatriated OFWs so far have been transported to their homes.  All have negative test results based on PCR tests, considered the gold standard for COVID-19 tests.

As of May 24, he said that 8,922 OFWs had been able to go home. Yesterday, Monday, May 25, Roque said that 2,926 more OFWs were transported to their homes – 2,256 by air and 670 by land.

Today, Tuesday, May 26, another one thousand OFWs are set to be transported by ship.

President Duterte early Monday ordered authorities to transport some 24,000 OFWs who had been long waiting for their COVID-19 test results in various hotels, and quarantine facilities.  He gave them one week to do this.  He also ordered all local government officials to accept the returning OFWs.

Malcanang expects more than 300,000 OFWs to be returning to the country after being displaced due to the COVID pandemic abroad. Others also opted to return home because of the high incidence of virus cases in their previous work place.