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Philippine Embassy To Provide Chartered Flights For Overseas Filipino Workers

“Changes procedures policies on passports renewals and extension implements strict precautionary measures against the spread of NCOVID 19”

Charges D’ Affaires of the Philippine Embassy Mohammad Nordin Lomondot announced yesterday that the embassy is able to secure two flights to the Philippines to accommodate stranded Filipinos with tickets on hand. Women in the Philippine shelter and other OFWs with other concerns will also join the flights.

CDA Lomondot told The Times that the flights have been arranged with Kuwait government and Kuwait Airways and the Philippines Department of Foreign Affairs. “We would like to provide our nationals who have purchased tickets but could not return to the Philippines due to the non-availability of outbound flights. Passengers may coordinate with the embassy through our hotlines so that directives can be given to process their flight details. We have assigned a travel agency to handle bookings and re-bookings of tickets,” commented CDA Lomondot.  He also added that Filipina women currently in the shelter and OFWs with other resolved cases will also join the scheduled flights.

He also urges  OFWs to contact the embassy immediately and adhere to directives. “We are also currently working on arranging for other flights for OFWs who are not financially able to secure tickets for the Philippines. We are coordinating with the Department of Foreign Affairs Philippines, other related agencies, and Kuwait to make this happen.  A large number of OFWs have been reported who lost their jobs and are wishing to return home. We ask OFWs to check our websites and news for further updates,” added CDA Lomondot.

Having been on lockdown in the Philippines and quarantine in Kuwait for returning passengers, CDA Lomondot reported to office last Sunday and among his priorities were to change the policy implemented on passport renewals and extensions making the process stress-free but with strict observance of safety measures among applicants and embassy officials.

“With our OFWs health security in mind and considering their limits on mobility due to non-availability of transportation, we have implemented a three-day open application for everyone who needs to renew and extend their passports. They need to log on to the website and fill up a form indicating their details with a focus on passport validity and visa. We’ll close the applications after the deadline and arrange schedules for them with priorities on the urgency of visa expirations,” explained CDA Lomondot.

Such a process will remain until all passports concerns have been addressed.  Many OFWs have been complaining about not being able to secure appointments online thereby making it difficult for some of them to renew their visas due to passport validity of less than a year. “After sorting out the validity dates of their visas, we will call them for an appointment, and they may bring the necessary documents so we can process them immediately,” added CDA Lomondot.

In addition, embassy premises will be open to OFWs to be able to process their passports but strict safety measures will be implemented for everyone who will enter. Additional protection structures have been added to the facility to ensure the safety of OFWs and staff at the same time such as physical arrangements with safety distancing, glass panels, and other essential details.

“This is in response to a series of complaints from our OFWs for not being allowed to enter the embassy and wait for their documents outside in such a humid and hot temperature. The procures will be quick and safe, and we urge all OFWs to comply strictly with safety measures such as the use of masks, gloves, and disinfectant at all times,” explained CDA Lomondot. The stringent directives are implemented to avoid infection of anyone especially embassy officials and staff to avoid closure of premises in case anyone is tested positive such as with the case of the Philippine Embassy, OWWA, and POLO in Saudi Arabia which are currently closed due to some officials have shown positive test results.

SOURCE : TIMESKUWAIT

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