Victims seek repatriation
By Kit Bagaipo
Philippines -- Three female overseas Filipino workers (OFWs), who alleged that the owner of a reflexology center in Malaysia forced them to take drugs and have sex with clients, have sought the help of a Bohol lawmaker for their repatriation.
Through text messages sent to the office of Bohol First District Representative Edgar Chatto, the three OFWs said they wanted be repatriated "as soon as possible" as they feared that they "might not be able to return home alive" because of their dangerous situation in Malaysia.
They claimed that their well-connected employer threatened to torture them if they refused to take drugs or have sex with clients.
In her latest text message, one of the OFWs disclosed that they had not received their salary.
One of the three OFWs also recalled that she and her two friends entered Malaysia as "tourists" although they were assured that they could work there.
However, the owner of the reflexology center did not process their working permits when they entered Malaysia.
They gave their full names and addresses in the Philippines but they asked that their identities be kept confidential to protect their honor and that of their respective families. They also gave their roaming mobile numbers.
They also gave the full name of their Malaysian boss and his business address but they also asked that the information be kept off the record for now.
Chatto, who is currently in the United States, has started contacting the Philippine Embassy in Malaysia, through the Department of Foreign Affairs, and the families of the three migrant workers.
He said he would check with the Department of Labor and Employment to trace the deployment of the three OFWs.
Chatto authored House Bill 5649, a measure seeking to improve standards of protection and assistance for migrant workers, and House Bill 4898, a legislation creating an OFW pension fund.