OFWs want raps filed vs Kuwait embassy execs

Posted at | Updated as of 01/21/14 11:30 PM

MANILA -- Filipinos in Kuwait are urging the government to hold Philippine embassy officials and staffmembers accountable for their alleged role in the abuse of Filipino workers.

They are calling for the filing of charges against the people supposedly involved in the abuse and trafficking of overseas Filipino workers.

"Napakahabang panahon na na nangyayari ito... at panahon na upang matuldukan ito. Ako'y naniniwala na itong kasong ito na isasampa laban sa mga nabanggit na opisyal ay pwedeng makapagmulat ng mata ng ilang manggagawa natin," Pastor Gil Bantugan,
president of the Phil Professional Organization in Kuwait, said in an interview with ANC.

"The time has come na dalhin sa tamang proseso at bigyan ng karampatang desisyon ng mga korte," he added.

Meanwhile, Oliver Diong, president of the Club Ilonggo in Kuwait, said those found guilty of the allegations should be punished.

"Kung malakas ang ebidensya at napatunayan na ang mga taong ito... ay nagkasala, kailangan silang parusahan nang sa ganoon, 'wag na po silang tularan ng iba pang empleyado ng ating embahada," he said.

The Philippine embassy said in March 2013, the Department of Foreign Affairs recalled former Assistant to Nationals Unit Head officer Dalidig Ibrahim Tanandato to Manila to answer human trafficking complaints against him.

The embassy also recommended last year that its Arabic translator, Muamar Mamosion, should be fired also for the same allegations.

Both Tanandato and Mamosion were among those named by the Kuwait Anti-Trafficking Task Force formed by the Justice Department.

"The embassy continues to act on these matters ever since we the task force was created last June. We also work with the task force of the Department of Labor and Employment," said Raul Dado, Philippine Consul General to Kuwait.

Meanwhile, the Philippine Overseas Labor Office in Kuwait is awaiting the details of the human trafficking case involving one of its staffmembers, Omar Khalil.

Cesar Chavez, Philippine Labor attache in Kuwait, said he has already talked to Khalil who expressed willingness to face the charges against him.

The Philippine embassy is also appealing to Filipinos in Kuwait to help authorities in exposing corruption and abuses committed by its personnel. - with reports from Maxxy Santiago, ABS-CBN Middle East Bureau; ANC