Published: Saturday 10 February, 2018

Ban on OFW Deployment to Kuwait Continues After Pinay Found in Freezer

The ban on new OFW deployment to Kuwait will stay, said President Rodrigo Duterte on Friday. Duterte was reacting to recent news that the body of a Filipina domestic worker was found inside a freezer in an abandoned apartment in Kuwait.

The reaction and decision of President Duterte was expected. He banned the deployment of OFWs to Kuwait specifically because of the abuse and maltreatment, some leading to suicide and death, suffered by a number of Filipina domestic workers.

“We send to you a Filipino worker, hale and hearty, determined to work his heart out in order to give his family a decent and comfortable life in the Philippines. Do not give us back a battered worker or a mutilated corpse,” said Duterte.

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“We do not intend to offend any government or anyone. But if a ban is what is needed, then let it be so,” he added.

Earlier this week, the Kuwait ambassador to the Philippines, Saleh Ahmad Althwaikh, visited Duterte in Malacanang reportedly to reconsider the ban on OFW deployment and assure the president that recent incidents were isolated cases. However, that was before the discovery of the body of a Filipina domestic worker inside the freezer. On Friday, Labor secretary Silvestre Bello III confirmed the identity of the dead OFW. She was Joanna Daniela Dimapilis, aka Joanna Daniela Demafelis.

Joanna Daniela Demafelis

Joanna Daniela Demafelis, aka Joanna Daniela Dimapilis.

“The Filipino is no slave to anyone, anywhere and everywhere. Every unlawful physical injury that is inflicted on an OFW [overseas Filipino worker] is an injury [that] I personally bear as the head of this Republic,” said President Duterte.

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“Every abuse committed against an OFW is an affront against us, as a sovereign nation. [All that] I ask [for] our overseas Filipino workers, is that their dignity is honored and the rights of a human being, upheld and respected,” he added.

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  1. […] following the restoration of labor ties with the Philippines. Earlier this year, President Duterte suspended the deployment of workers to Kuwait following cases of abuse and deaths in Filipino domestic workers, including Joanna Demafelis whose […]