MANILA, Philippines — Senators are now proposing a new hotline for overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) and plans to visit them in their host countries following the discovery of Jullebee Ranara’s burnt body in a Kuwaiti desert.
Senators Ramon “Bong” Revilla and Raffy Tulfo suggested measures to further safeguard OFWs. During the session, Tulfo attempted to contact the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration hotline but only received an automated message.
“I think that has to be improved. Buti na lang tinawagan ko ngayon, and I will talk to Secretary Toots Ople para maglagay ng bagong hotline na may sasagot agad right there and then, 24/7 kung kinakailangan.”SENATOR RAFFY TULFO
(Good thing I called now, and I will talk to Secretary Toots Ople to put up a new hotline wherein someone will answer right there and then, 24/7 if needed.)
Tulfo also offered the grieving family with P50,000 financial assistance.
Meanwhile, Revilla proposed interacting with OFWs to ask for their needs.
“Let this be a warning, loud and clear, mga kababayan: May kasangga ang ating mga mahal na mga OFWs dito sa Senado. Hindi natin palalagpasin ang mga ganitong pangyayari. Managot ang dapat managot,” Revilla said.
(Let this be a warning, loud and clear, fellow Filipinos: Our beloved OFWs can lean on someone in the Senate. We will not let this kind of incident pass. Perpetrators must be accountable.)
“Siguro, one of these days, dalawin natin ang ating mga kababayan sa bawat lugar na ‘yan at makausap kung ano pa talaga ang kailangan nilang suporta na manggagaling sa atin,” he added.
(Maybe, one of these days, let us visit our fellow Filipinos in each place and talk to them to know what they need from us.)
Senator Jinggoy Estrada also condemned Ranara’s case and proposed that the Department of Migrant Workers should prohibit OFWs from working in Kuwait.
“I’m not here to point fingers at anyone. I am merely out to express my condemnation on the gruesome death of Ranara who, just like the millions of our OFWs, was simply seeking better opportunities abroad so that she could provide for her family and loved ones at home, but ended up in harm’s way,” Estrada said.