24 more retrenched OFWs on their way home from Saudi Arabia
Consul General Imelda Panolong, Labor Attache Jun Rasul, and a team from OWWA giving advice to the 24 OFWs before they board their flight home to the Philippines. Photo by Ronaldo Concha
JEDDAH — Twenty-four OFWs who lost their jobs in Saudi Arabia due to the slump in oil prices are finally on their way home after they received their unpaid salaries from their former employer.
The 24 OFWs, who used to work for Saudi Binladen Group, one of the companies affected by the oil crisis, left Saudi Arabia on Sunday night via a Kuwait Airways flight, according to Philippine Consul General Imelda Panolong.
The OFWs were accompanied to the King Abdul Aziz International Airport by officials from the Philippine Consulate and Philippine Overseas Labor Office to ensure their hassle-free departure.
Panolong said the 24 were among the first recipients of the financial assistance from the Overseas Workers Welfare Office (OWWA) given to Filipino workers affected by the massive retrenchments in Saudi Arabia triggered by the oil situation.
She said they urged the OFWs to file a complaint with the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) or the National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC) in order for them to claim the other benefits due them, particularly their standby allowance.
"Pinayuhan namin sila na maaari silang maghain ng reklamo sa POEA at NLRC para sa iba pa nilang mga claims na kinukuha," Panolong said.
Panolong said more retrenched OFWs will be coming home soon.
There is an estimated 9,000 to 11,000 OFWs retrenched OFWs in Saudi Arabia. —Ronaldo Concha/KBK, GMA News