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Apr 29 18, 6:18 am

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Duterte appeals to all Pinoys in Kuwait to come home amid diplomatic row

by | TOP STORIES

Apr. 29, 18 | 6:18 am

President Rodrigo Duterte on Saturday, April 28, appealed to all Filipino workers in Kuwait to come home, during the sidelines of the 32nd ASEAN Leaders’ Meeting in Singapore.

The President noted that the Philippines and Kuwait had “problems” to resolve labor issues and noted that he could no longer accept how Filipino workers, particularly household help, are abused and taken advantage of in the Gulf country.

“I plead that they be given treatment deserving of a human being. Mamaya nalang tayo mag-usap pag nakuha ko na lahat (Let’s talk once after I get all of them back home),” Duterte said.

He, meanwhile, urged Filipino workers in Kuwait, including professionals, to come back home as an act of “patriotism.”

Kayong mga nandyan sa Kuwait (Those who are there in Kuwait), for those who are not household workers, I now appeal for your sense of patriotism. Come home. Tutal madami nang trabaho sa Pilipinas (There are many jobs in the Philippines),” Duterte said.

Everything is up in the air now

Duterte is expected to make a “personally crafted” announcement on the country’s next step to resolve its conflict with Kuwait today, April 29, his spokesperson has said.

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said Duterte will announce the Philippine position during his arrival statement in Davao on Sunday.

“He wants to announce it in Philippine soil,” he said.

Roque said Duterte’s announcement was not recommended by any of his advisers or Cabinet officials since it was one that he “personally crafted”.

Earlier this week, the Malacanang Palace said the Philippines and Kuwait may possibly sign the memorandum of understanding (MOU) on the protection of overseas Filipino workers in the Gulf state after this year’s Ramadan in June. However, Roque said that at present, “I do not know, everything is up in the air now with recent developments Kuwaiti ambassador [Musaed Saleh Ahmad Althwaikh] being recalled and Philippine ambassador [Renato Villa] being declared persona non-grata.”

Funds from China

Duterte said Chinese President Xi Jinping “gave” the Philippine government funds which were already set aside for another project. However, he would instead use them to spend for Filipino workers in Kuwait who want to return.

“I will be frank with you, China is a very good friend. When I was there last week, may binigay si President Xi Jinping (Presdent Xi Jinping gave us something),” Duterte said.

Sana gagamitin ko yun sa ibang project, actually I’ll tell you its about 4 point something, almost 5 billion. Yung pera na yan gagastuhin ko nalang para kunin ang lahat ng gustong umuwi (That money I will spend to get all Filipino workers who want to come home),” he added.

Duterte did not give further details about the funds given by the Chinese President but said that he was willing to spend it to the last centavo just to assure that Filipno workers are safe.

“I have that money which was intended for education. Gagastusin ko ‘yan to the last centravo. Tulong ng China ‘yan (I will spend it to the last centavo. That’s help from China),” Duterte said.

 

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THE FILIPINO TIMES is the biggest and most trusted Filipino newspaper in the UAE.

It has a print run of 60,000 copies and 250,000 readership per week; bolstered by 1 million visitors to its website every month. It also has an e-newsletter sent to its 250,000 subscribers every day.

The Filipino Times is FREE and has the widest targeted circulation across the 7 emirates of the UAE.

With more than 2,500 strategic distribution spots, TFT is available where the Filipinos are - at Smart Bus Shelters, Metro Stations, restaurants, supermarkets, schools, airport lounges, Emirates and Etihad Philippine-bound flights, churches, Filipino community events and many more.

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