MANILA - More than 120,000 repatriated OFWs have been sent home to their respective provinces amid the coronavirus disease pandemic, the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) said Tuesday.
Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III, in a statement, said that based on a report from the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA), the number of Filipino migrant workers going back to their provinces continues to rise as the pandemic persists worldwide.
OWWA Administrator Hans Leo Cacdac said that a total of 122,369 have been sent to their home provinces since May by land and sea transport arranged by the agency.
Before Metro Manila reverted to the modified enhanced community quarantine on Tuesday, 2,369 OFWs were sent home on Monday.
“We will not get tired of assisting our returning OFWs, and facilitate their transport to the provinces and be with their families,” Bello said.
The labor secretary said his department has "almost exhausted" P2.5-billion worth of financial aid under the Abot Kamay Ang Pagtulong sa OFWs (AKAP) program.
Tens of thousands of OFWs have returned to the Philippines since March as coronavirus cases worldwide started to rapidly rise, forcing establishments and businesses to temporarily close in nearly all countries, leading to loss of jobs and income.