The Philippine government has allowed the re-deployment of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) in South Sudan, citing the improved political situation there.
However, the deployment of newly hired OFWs to the African country remains on hold, according to the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) in its Governing Board Resolution 11.
The resolution only permits the reentry of Filipino workers in South Sudan provided they have employment there.
"Now, therefore, the POEA Governing Board, in a meeting duly convened, resolves as its is hereby resolved, to allow the redeployment of returning Filipino workers to South Sudan, subject to proof of existing employment as determined by POEA," the agency said in its resolution approved on June 30 and disseminated on July 4.
"The deployment ban for newly-hired OFWs shall be maintained," it added.
The decision was based on a recommendation from the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), which has lowered the alert level in South Sudan from Alert Level 3 (Voluntary Repatriation) to Alert Level 2 (Restriction Phase) in view of the improved situation in the said country.
With this, the POEA reiterated that the under Alert Level 2, processing and deployment of workers shall be allowed only to OFWs returning to their current employers and are with existing employment contracts.
On January 13, 2012, the POEA Governing Board issued Resolution No.1, Series of 2012, based on Crisis Alert Level 3 imposed by the DFA on South Sudan due to the worsening political and security conditions in the country thereby prohibiting the deployment of workers.
On March 22, 2012, the total ban was lifted due to the lowering of the Crisis Level by the DFA from Alert Level 3 to Alert Level 1, but the deployment ban was reinstated on December 24, 2013 based on Crisis Alert Level 3 as ordered by DFA due to the deteriorating peace and order conditions brought about by the continuing ethnics violence. —KBK, GMA News