A Filipino community leader in Qatar on Wednesday said there were no incidents of panic buying there, following the announcement of several countries in the Gulf region to cut diplomatic ties with the kingdom.
Filipino community leader Delfin Montenegro said the rush of people who came buying goods in groceries last Monday coincided with pay day.
“Ang mga tao syempre first week of the month bagong sweldo, so sila nakakabili lang sila during nighttime. So, naalarma rin naman kami dito bakit may mga (report na) ganun na panic buying, which is hindi naman talaga totoo yan. Walang ganun dito, na may panic buying,” Montenegro said in an interview with ABS CBN News Channel.
“Punong puno ng laman [ang groceries dito], so walang nabago. Normal, ganun dito. Kasi yung report na nakarating, hindi totoo yun. Napakatahimik ng Qatar, walang nangyaring gulo,” he said.
Roussel Reyes, consul general of the Philippine Embassy to Doha, previously said there were isolated incidents of panic buying there.
Montenegro added that it was business "as usual" in Qatar.
“Walang tension man lang, as in normal na trabaho lang. So walang dapat ipagalala ang ating mga kababayan dahil dito tahimik na tahimik kami,” he said.
Montenegro also welcomed the Labor department’s lifting of the suspension on the deployment of overseas Filipino workers to Qatar that are direct hires, those who have Overseas Employment Certificates (OEC), and those under the Balik Manggagawa system or returning employees.
“Magandang balita 'yan, nakakatuwa naman. Hindi na magkakarooon ng problema 'yung mga nakabasyon nating OFWs (overseas Filipino workers). Kasi dito, once na 'di ka pumasok eh tiyak na mate-terminate ka sa trabaho. So, maapektuhan sila. Ngayon, okay na at nakakatuwa naman, magandang balita 'yan at nagpalabas na rin ng circular ang embahada natin dito tungkol diyan,” he said.
Saudi Arabia, Egypt, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Yemen, Maldives, and Libya's eastern-based government severed diplomatic relations with Qatar on Monday over allegations that it supports Muslim extremism.