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Pwede nang magtrabaho! Duterte orders lifting of deployment ban to Kuwait

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President Rodrigo Duterte ordered Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III Wednesday (May 16) to lift the deployment ban to Kuwait after the signing of an agreement to protect Filipino migrant workers.

According Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque, Duterte issued the order to Bello upon the recommendation of Special Envoy to Kuwait Abdullah Mama-o.

Bello imposed a total ban on the deployment of Filipino workers to Kuwait last February on Duterte’s instructions.

The President was angered by stories of abuse suffered by Filipinas working in the Gulf state, particularly the gruesome murder of domestic helper Joanna Demafelis, whose body was found inside a freezer.

Relations between the two countries were strained after the Department of Foreign Affairs made much publicized rescues of distressed workers in Kuwait, earning the ire of its officials.

After a number of meetings, however, Philippine and Kuwaiti officials signed a memorandum of understanding for the protection of Filipino migrant workers.

Among the provisions of the deal are the creation of a 24/7 hotline Filipino workers can call to report instances of abuse and the ban on confiscation of passports by Kuwaiti employers.