Hundreds of OFWs in Kuwait hit by delayed salaries

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 04 2016 08:06 PM

MANILA – Over 100 overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) in Kuwait will soon receive their delayed wages after their company agreed to settle its obligation to the workers, the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) said.

In a press statement, the DOLE said it will extend necessary aid, including repatriation, to 847 affected OFWs in Kuwait.

Of the number, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello said 773 are laborers and 74 are in supervisory, engineering and administrative positions.

Bello said the OFWs' employer, Kharafi National KSC, has not paid their salaries for the past two to four months. 

Citing a report from Labor Attache Angelita Narvaes of the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) in Kuwait, Bello said representatives from the POLO and Kharafi National KSC met last month to discuss the recurring problem of delayed payment of salaries.

Narvaes reported that the Kuwaiti company also allowed the workers to resign and return to the country. Workers who asked to be transferred to other Kuwaiti company will be allowed provided they were employed by Kharafi for more than three years.

Last August, the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) ordered the disqualification of Kharafi National KSC from the country’s overseas employment program. This after POLO-Kuwait requested the POEA to stop new deployment of OFWs for Kharafi because of recurring problems of unpaid salaries to its workers. 

Aside from those in Kuwait, the DOLE has assisted the more than 10,200 OFWs from Riyadh, Al Khobar and Jeddah in Saudi Arabia still reeling from the impact of the slump in oil prices in the Middle East early this year.