OFW in Dubai uses FB to seek help for abused kababayan
Relatives of Rina Barreto, an OFW in the United Arab Emirates, have expressed worry after seeing a picture of her on Facebook where she looked old and with deep sunken eyes, a report on "Balita Pilipinas" said Friday.
The photo was posted last October 20 by Elmie Nobillos, an OFW in Dubai who was seeking help for Barreto, according to the report by GMA News stringer Nenita Hobilla.
"Sabi niya hindi na daw talaga niya kaya mga amo niya, pinapahirapan daw siya lalo kaya nagbabalak siyang tumakas na lang," Nobillos wrote on Facebook.
According to Barreto's mother Chanita, her daughter, during their last phone conversation on September 22, told her she wants to go home, claiming she was being maltreated by her employer.
Chanita said her daughter told her she was being padlocked inside her employer's house. The younger Barreto also reportedly said she was not fed well by her employer, and that there were CCTV cameras all over the house to monitor her.
"Sabi niya, hindi niya kayang magtrabaho dahil nanghihina siya. Nag-aalala kami dahil hindi siya makakalabas doon," Chanita said, adding she has yet to hear from her daughter since their last phone call.
The report said the Philippine Embassy in the UAE has already written a letter to the UAE government regarding Barreto's case.
For its part, the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) said it must be proven first that Barretto was being maltreated by her employer before it could make a move.
"Kung i-present siya roon sa embahada, hindi siya pwedeng uuwi agad-agad dahil nakakontrata siya ng dalawang taon," Officer Allen Arroyo said.
If the abuse is proven, Arroyo said the recruitment agency that deployed Barretto may face legal consequences.
"Dalawa ang pwedeng mangyari kung hindi talaga magbibibgay ang recruitment agency ng hinihingi nating documents na maipresenta sa embassy, magfa-file tayo ng legal complaint through local agency rito sa Pilipinas," he said. —Rie Takumi/KBK, GMA News