President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday, August 31, promised 129 repatriated overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) to be included in the government’s conditional cash transfer (CCT) program.
Duterte met with the repatriated OFWs from Saudi Arabia at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Naia) after they failed to get their salaries from their employer.
Gilbert Macapobre, 49, one of the repatriated OFWs, said he wasn’t paid his salary for 10 months.
A pipe fitter in the Middle East, Macapobre said his employer Mohammad Almuji Group owes him 13,000 riyal (around P 161,543.46 if based on SAR1 = P12.4264).
“Kung talagang medyo hirap ka, even to survive, let me know. Kasi kung talagang sarado, then i-enroll ko na lang kayo sa 4Ps,” Duterte said.
(If you’re in dire straits, I will enroll you to the 4Ps).
CCT or the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program is the government’s anti-poverty program.
The President, however, told the repatriated OFWs to exit the CCT program once they have a stable job.
“Just don’t be a liar. Sabihin na ninyo ang totoo kung may trabaho na kayo (Tell us if you find jobs already), then I’ll stop the assistance,” he said.
Duterte also vowed free education for the children of the repatriated OFWs.
“Maybe iyong sabi niya na walang pang-enrollment, naputol, mag-enroll lang kayo sa state university o sa eskwelahan—any elementary school. I-documentation lang ninyo ang pagka-OFW ninyo. Ako na ang magbayad sa eskwelahan. Ang kailangan lang ipakita iyong employment contract ninyo, when you went out and in. Tapos iyong OFW order,” he said.
The President said he would pay for the school fees of the children.
“Diretso na ang billing sa Office of the President. Marami tayong bangkong mapagnakawan,” he said.
The chief executive also vowed to give P5000 to the repatriated OFWs for their transportation back to their provinces.
Aside from these, Duterte said he would create a bank solely for OFWs. He did not elaborate.
The President promised to the OFWs that the government’s legal team would not leave Saudi until their legal claims are settled. Inquirer.net