MANILA - The Philippines will not lift a ban on the deployment of workers to Kuwait until justice served to a Filipina domestic worker, whose remains were found in a freezer in the Middle East state, Labor Sec. Silvestre Bello III said Monday.
An agreement to better protect Filipino workers in Kuwait, which was reached last week, is just one of the conditions set by President Rodrigo Duterte before two-month old prohibition is lifted, Bello told DZMM.
"Sabi ng ating Pangulo, para ma-lift 'yang deployment ban ay dalawa ang kanyang kondisyon: magkaroon ng memorandum of understanding at mabibigyan si Joanna Demafelis ng katarungan... Kailangan managot yung pumatay sa kanya," he told DZMM.
After a meeting with Philippine officials in Manila, Kuwaiti officials last Friday agreed to allow Philippine embassy to keep the passports of the Filipino workers, who will also be allowed to keep their phones.
Bello said he was waiting for his Kuwaiti counterpart to sign the agreement.
The death of Demafelis, whose body was found in the freezer, is just one in a string of reported OFW deaths in Kuwait that angered Duterte and prompted him to impose the deployment ban.