Pinoy group comes to aid of stranded OFWs in Saudi


Posted at Jan 16 2015 07:29 AM | Updated as of Jan 16 2015 03:29 PM

MANILA – More than 30 overseas Filipino workers in Riyadh sought help from a Pinoy organization after their company continues to delay their return home to the Philippines.

Riyadh-based advocacy group Patnubay found out about the plight of the workers who were employed by the company Arsan.

Arsan, they learned, is the same firm that delayed the departure of about 50 OFWs under its employ in 2011 and 2012.

The workers said they already finished their contracts with the company, but Arsan did not send them home.

They all hoped to come home last Christmas and New Year.

"Kaso nga lang dito pinapahirapan kami sa aming kumpanya, hindi kami pinapauwi," said painter/maintenance worker Edsel Glynn Tarucan.

Some of them have been waiting for eight months.

The workers said they brought their complaint to the Philippine Overseas Labor Office in Riyadh.

"Sila pa ang nagalit sa amin, pinagalitan pa nga kami. Bakit daw ngayon lang kami pumunta. Ang sabi nga namin, yun nga sir, ito ngang pumunta dito walang ngang nangyari, yung una sa amin, paano pa kami?" said messenger Albert Wage from Bukidnon.

The workers appealed for food and other supplies from Patnubay, which the group gladly provided.

In 2011, 39 OFWS from Cebu claimed that Arsan changed their contracts, particularly the monthly salary which they should have received.

The following year, 17 OFWs were also stranded for several months by the company before they were sent home. Report from Roland Blanco, ABS-CBN Middle East News Bureau