Commission on Appointments confirms new PH envoy to Kuwait

Maxxy Santiago, ABS-CBN Middle East News Bureau

Posted at Sep 16 2020 09:42 PM

Philippine Ambassador to Kuwait Mohd Noordin Pendosina Lomondot. Handout photo

KUWAIT CITY - The Philippine Commission on Appointments and Committee on Foreign Affairs approved on Wednesday the nomination of Mohd Noordin Pendosina Lomondot as the new Philippine Ambassador to Kuwait.

Aside from Lomondot, the appointments of five other ambassadors were also approved. 

Those whose appointments were approved were Maria Amelita Cunanan Aquino, ambassador to Cambodia; Frank Revil Cimafranca, ambassador to Hungary with concurrent jurisdiction over Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Montenegro, Romania, Serbia and Moldova; Meynardo Los Baños Montealegre, ambassador to Vietnam; Giovanni Endencia Palec, ambassador to Cyprus; and Macairog Sabiniano Alberto, ambassador to Israel.

Lomondot, who has an extensive experience in the Middle East, was posted in Kuwait as Consul General in January 2018 after his tenure as Charge d’ Affaires at the Philippine Embassy in Dhaka, Bangladesh. He became the Charge d’ Affaires in Kuwait after a diplomatic row ensued between Kuwait over the treatment of Filipino domestic workers that resulted in the expulsion of the Philippine Ambassador. The diplomatic row ended with the signing of an agreement on the protection of Filipino domestic workers between the two countries on May 11, 2018. Lomondot has been at the helm up to his confirmation on Wednesday.

“I am thankful to the Almighty for overseeing that the Commission on Appointments in plenary session confirmed my appointment as Philippine Ambassador to the State of Kuwait, after which Secretary of Foreign Affairs Teodoro Locsin swore our batch of new ambassadors to our oath,” said Lomondot, who is now in Manila for the confirmation proceedings.

Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. administered the oath of office to Lomondot at the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) in Pasay City on Wednesday.

Accompanying Ambassador-designate Lomondot are Presidential Adviser on Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW) Concerns Secretary Abdullah D. Mama-o, and Undersecretary Edwin D. Bael of the Office of the Presidential Adviser on OFW Concerns.

Last March, Lomondot’s confirmation as envoy to Kuwait was deferred because he was already set to retire in April. Lawmakers suggested then that Lomondot should just be given the ambassador post as a political appointee after he retires.

Filipinos in Kuwait welcomed the timely confirmation of Lomondot as the new envoy, amid the coronavirus pandemic that has displaced over 23,000 overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) in Kuwait. There are more than 240,000 OFWs in Kuwait, 65 percent of which are household service workers while the rest are professionals, skilled and semi-skilled workers.