PhilEmb-Ruh Web Site

PhilEmb-Ruh Web Site

Last week I happen to visit the Philippine Embassy-Riyadh web site upon advised by Philippine embassy staff that I could download the lists of OAV absentee voters in the site. Luckily I was, and copy of it was emailed to some of my friends in Al Khobar.

 The site is having a good web design, kudos to the designer. Though some of its features are not yet accessible. I tried to open the Philippine-Saudi Relations tab but no entry found. Even the message of the new Ambassador is not available, prompted me to call the web designer and inquire if it has something to do with my server. He replied that it would take time to load XML text material. I noted it, but up to this entry I still can’t access some of its features.

The Web Site

The Web Site (as of April 30, 2007)

 

 

The press release from our Philippine Embassy about their OAV Campaign “Bumoto Ka Na Ba?” is featured upon access to the site. However, we cannot find any posters in Batha and other places that the campaign posters could be useful. Maybe because I am located in the mountain or desert area of Riyadh “kaya wala akong makita na OAV campaign material” from Embassy. If ever I’m wrong, I’ll be reprimanded for this entry. Be it!  

Try to browse Bangladesh Embassy web site, the web design is not quite good looking but I can access it at once without waiting for any XML text to download. It is also very informative site to Bangladeshi expats.   

 

His Excellency Philippine Ambassador to Saudi Arabia Antonio Villamor
His Excellency Philippine Ambassador to Saudi Arabia Antonio Villamor

Today March 2009, please click picture of H.E. Excellency Philippine Ambassador to Saudi Arabia Antonio Villamor.

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Go out and Vote Campaign

Posted 27 April 2007

It was quite exhausting but happy indeed that once again we were able to do the task in line with our “go out and vote campaign”.

Yesterday night I and Ka Francis Oca with ka Alex Bello were busy preparing  the materials necessary for what we have accomplished today.

We went to Batha this morning to post our Go Out and Vote posters in selected strategic points of the area where our co-pinoys frequently hang out.

Sad to say that some of our kababayan only learned that OAV had already started after reading the posters.

My fellow concerned OFWs/Overseas Filipinos who believe that the spirit of democracy is measured  through electoral process, please  help us in our campaign.

To Francis Robert Oca, son of our colleague Francis, thanks a lot for designing as well as providing several copies of the campaign material.

To each and everyone, lets do our share.

OAV update in Riyadh:  Ka Ambo’s  “It’s Just Another Day“.

The second week of the ongoing Overseas Absentee Voting ended this evening. While there was a slight increase in the number of voters who cast their votes this week compared to last at the embassy here in Riyadh, still it is much lower than we expected. But the sight of three company buses transporting voters to the embassy was a good sign, and we hope the remaining two weeks will really see us more company buses bringing in more voters.

It's Just Another Day Ahead"

It’s Just Another Day Ahead”

Ask anybody, especially government officials, what they think is the reason why the turn out of voters have been very low, the most common answers you will get are that: many overseas Filipinos think that since this election is not a presidential election it is not so important; many think that it is useless to cast their votes because these will not be counted anyway; and many say ‘nakakatamad naman kasing pumunta sa embassy’.

At one point I did believe that may be those are the valid reasons. But this afternoon, I realized that those earlier statements may not be the reasons at all..

In relation to our Go Out and Vote campaign here in Riyadh, we designed a campaign ad that centered on why we should cast our votes. The message was conveyed by the following lines that were printed on the poster/flyer:

Ipaabot ang nagkakaisang tinig
Gamitin ang karapatang marinig
Ang Boto mo, pahalagahan mo.

We had the poster designed by a young OFW for free, but the printing of the four color poster cost us SR 2.50 each for the A4 size, and SR 50 for the A3 size. Thursday night we have the number of posters we needed ready.

This morning we started placing those posters in areas around Riyadh where many Filipinos usually hang out especially during weekends. In one supermarket the Filipino cashier commented: “Nag umpisa na pala ang botohan?” In one restaurant one employee asked, “Taga Comelec po kayo?”; while a jolly barker in the fastfood center said, “huwag kayong mag-alala kabayan, akong bahala dyan”, referring to the poster that we stuck on a suggestion box.

When I heard the supermarket cashier said, “nag-umpisa na pala ang botohan,” I asked myself how many Filipinos like him are not aware that the overseas absentee voting period has already started two weeks ago; maybe a hundred, or maybe a couple of thousands? Could this not be the main reason why there is a low turn out of voters?

What really made me smile was the question from the waiter at the Thai restaurant. When asked, “taga Comelec po kayo?” we simply said we are not from Comelec, but are from various OFW organizations. But he’s got a point. Bakit nga ba kami ang nagdidikit ng mga OAV posters na yon at hindi ang mga taga Political section ng embahada?

Commissioner Tuason proudly announced during the OAV Forum at Intramuros last March that the OAV cost per voter this year compared to that of 2004 is very very much lower. That of course was great for the budget department. But given the experience of 2004, the Comelec could have spent some amount on information materials like posters and flyers. If posters were sent to the Posts a month before the start of the voting period, and the Posts are able to distribute these to the major companies and community organizations, as well as display some in areas where Filipinos usually hang out – like what we did today, chances are the turn out could be better than what we witness now.

But if Comelec cannot even send postal voting materials and voters ID on time, can we expect them to be able to think of those little, yet very important, things?

It bleeds my heart when I think of how little the government cares about us who are sacrificing to be away from home just to keep the Philippines survive. Perhaps when the bleeding stops, time will have been ripe.

But for now, today is just another day. ###

An Open Letter of Appeal to Absentee Voters

 

An Open Letter of Appeal to Absentee Voters

We all know that during elections, like the one we are having this year, is the best and only time that we can make our voice as citizens be heard. It was also in cognizance of this right that for years we fought it out with Congress that we, Overseas Filipinos, be given that right. In 2003 that right was given to us with the passage of the Overseas Absentee Voting Act of 2003. We first exercised our rights under that law during the national elections in 2004.

This year, starting from April 14 to May 14, we are again given the right to let our voices be heard. We are given the right to say, “Tama na, sobra na” to those whom we believe have not been true to their sworn responsibilities as our representatives; and to those whom we perceive are not supportive to the cause of Overseas Filipinos. And we are also given the right to say, “Ikaw nga, o kayo nga, ang tunay naming kapuso at kapamilya!”

But ten days through the one month voting period given to us, reports have it on how low the voters turn out has been. There are those who say, even among our embassy officials, that the numbers will improve on the last few days of the voting period.

We in the OFW Congress here in Riyadh, KSA believe that each of us has an obligation to remind our friends, our co-workers, our fellow Overseas Filipinos, even our relatives back home not to put their chance to be heard to waste by failing to cast their vote. Sabi nga sa TV advertisement: “Sa isang boto ng bawat isa sa atin magsisimula ang pagbabago.” Let’s all Go Out and Vote!

Thank you so much for your time and cooperation in making this year’s Overseas Absentee Voting a successful one. God Bless us and our country.

From: Overseas Filipino Workers Congress-Riyadh

 

Hangyo lang! Mr. Secretary

News item reported in the Daily Tribune dated today 04/24/07 that DOJ Chief Raul Gonzalez buys vote of Barangay heads of Iloilo, his bailiwick. The report said, he even admitted it in a radio station interview that he offered P10,000 to Barangay Captains in exchange for Team Unity sweep in the area.

 

HUH! I don’t really like this guy from the beginning he assumed the office as Secretary of Justice. I knew too that he was given the portfolio “bayad sa utang na loob” on his participation in the impeachment against former Pres. Erap and everybody knew that! “Bulag na ang pinoy pag hindi ito nakikita”

 

Every time I saw him on TV, I always ignore him and changed channel; I have to admit nakakainis tingnan “lalo na pag pipikit pikit ang mata”. I also observed that he always pre-judged or announced in media a possible outcome of a certain case, which is very wrong for a Secretary of Justice to do so. I also noticed of many books and papers in his table, “paano maka pag concentrate ang isang Kalihim ng Hustisya sa ganitong environment”. When I was working in a law office, I always made sure that my lawyer boss surroundings are clean and pleasing to his clients. I even visited former Justice Secretary Silvestre “Bebot” Bello III at DOJ where everything was in order in his office.

 

He even says that nothing is wrong with his offer since he is using his own money, Oh! My Gosh! Mr. Secretary, “konting delicadeza naman, HANGYO LANG”.

 

Vote buying is the number one problem in our country during election. Galit ako sa mga bumibili at nagpapabili ng boto!         

 

Malapit na akong umuwi, baka e-hold mo ako sa airport ha! Just pouring out some emotions that clogged deep within me.

 

Sorry!  Philippines is a free country I have the right to say what I want to say that what I feel is right. Anyway, don’t get offended, I am an ordinary OFW I can’t harm you.

PhilEmb reaches out to 68 companies

Press Release No.APV-21/2007

22 April 2007

 

Philippine Embassy reaches out to 68 companies

to increase voter turnout

 

22 April 2007 - The Philippine Embassy today reported that as part of its efforts to increase voter turnout, it has written to 68 companies in the Riyadh area and Eastern Province to request these establishments to allow their registered Filipino workers to cast their votes in the Embassy and the International Philippine School in Al-Khobar.

 

Ambassador Antonio P. Villamor said that the Embassy began communicating with companies which employ substantial number of Filipinos, even before the start of the overseas absentee voting on April 14. “Two weeks prior to the start of the voting, we have written to medical institutions in Riyadh to inform them of the conduct of the elections for senators and party-list representatives. We asked these institutions to allow their Filipino employees to vote and to provide them adequate transportation,” said Ambassador Villamor. He added that the Embassy continues to receive and respond to requests from Filipino community leaders and individuals to send official letters to their employers regarding the elections.

 

During the first week of voting, 1,403 voters cast their ballots in the Embassy while 652 voted in Al-Khobar and 808 in Jeddah. Ambassador Villamor expressed optimism that the turn-out rate will increase in the remaining three weeks of voting once the workers of the 68 companies start trooping to the voting centers.

 

Ambassador Villamor said “there is a saying that decisions are made by those who show up, so I urge every registered Filipino voter to come out and vote and let your voices be heard.”

OFW Sarah Jane Dematera

demateraI cast my vote last Friday at our Philippine Embassy in Riyadh and after casting my vote I roamed around to observed the OAV electoral process as part of our campaign “Ang Boto mo ay  Mahalaga, Bantayan Mo”.

When I went to the basement area I caught my attention of a donation box on the way going to the Precincts.

Brief info about the case re: Sarah Jane Dematera.

Sarah Jane Dematera

Sarah Jane Dematera

Sarah Jane Dematera was 19 years old when she arrived in Saudi Arabia in November 1992 from the Philippines to work as a domestic helper. Four days later she was arrested for the murder of her female employer. She was sentenced to death by a court judgment issued on 14 November 1993.

After 15 years in jail on the basis of the forgiveness executed by the husband of the victim, Sarah now at 34 years of age with your kind hearted help will be out in jail very soon.

Contact our Department of Foreign Affairs or the Consulate/Embassy in your area for your donation.

By ofwempowerment Posted in Others

1st Friday of OAV in Riyadh

The 11th hour Filipino syndrome is one of the negative traits we have Filipinos and I personally acknowledged it. Probably, this is the main reason that progress within us and the whole Filipino nation is very slow due to the mentioned sickness.

My Right Choice

My Right Choice

Yesterday I was there at our Philippine Embassy and casted my vote. Sadly, we noticed that very few absentee voters were there to exercise their right of suffrage. I remember in 2004, the absentee voters flock at our Embassy in the last day of voting period. I will not be surprised it would be the same in this years’ election. Though the possibility of low voters turn out in Riyadh did not crossed my mind, “I still believed that Filipinos loved the spirit of our democracy and that is the right to vote”.

On the other hand, we are glad that our observations in the first day of voting period were given attention by the OAV in charge of our Philippine Embassy.

1)      The back to back lists of Party List Group postings were already in the front page

Party List Group Postings (Front Page)

Party List Group Postings (Front Page)

2)      UHU glue are available in all precincts

Glue

Glue

3)      The Black Python Martial Arts members were there assigned as Marshals. The First Friday of the voting period was peaceful and orderly. 

4)	Black Python Marshals w/ Alex V. Bello & Francis Oca (cencter) At Center Grandmaster & Founder Boy Macion

4) Black Python Marshals w/ Alex V. Bello & Francis Oca (cencter) At Center Grandmaster & Founder Boy Macion

We visited the office of the OAV Committee Chairman in Riyadh Vice Consul Abiog on some important inquiries and officialy requested him to provide us the figures of the voters turn out in weekly basis.

5)	SBEI at Precict # 1 with Attache Babes Hidalgo(center)

5) SBEI at Precict # 1 with Attache Babes Hidalgo(center)

Hoping to give you more infos in the next succeeding Fridays.

Back in the Mood

I received 3 important calls/message since yesterday.

 

One from His Excellency Ambassador Antonio Villamor assuring us that the Embassy will do the necessary for the immediate repatriation of an OFW who just passed away.

 

The other one was a call from a long time friend in Mandaue City, Cebu asking support for the candidacy of his re-electionist sister, the incumbent Congresswoman of CEBU 6th District (Mandaue/Lapu Lapu) who is also the House Committee Vice-Chair of Overseas Workers Affairs . “Lapu Lapu City is my adopted home given that I established my residency in the area”. The “Neis-Soon-Ruiz” are our family friend. 

 

The  last one today is from a friend, a respected diplomat and currently assigned at Philippine Embassy in Netherlands.

 

I’m back in good mood… Happy Weekend.

By ofwempowerment Posted in Others

Memorandum from Royal Embassy-Manila

 

Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia-Manila

 

MEMORANDUM

 

To :  All Saudi Embassy-Accredited Recruitment Agencies

From  : Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia (Consular Section)

Date  : 03 April 2007

 

Kindly be informed that effective Monday, 16 April 2007 all visa applicants except household workers (domestic helper, family driver, houseboy, babysitter, family dressmaker, family cook, private nurse) are required to submit their old passports, if any. Visa applicants without old passports are required to submit from Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) certificates that the passports issued to them are their first.

 

For strict compliance.

 

MOHAMMAD KH. AL-SHAMMARI

Head of the Consular Section

KSA Restricts Re-Entry of Ex-OFWs

E R R A T U M

 

In the April 16 article “Saudi Arabia Restricts Re-Entry of OFWs”, the relevant Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia memorandum to accredited  recruitment agencies says that all Visa applicants except household workers are required to submit their old passports, if any.

 

Visa applicants without old passports are required to submit from the Department of Foreign affairs certificates that the passports issued for them are first.

 

There is no mention in the memorandum  of an NOC (No Objection Certificate) being required for returning OFWs in their old passports. Arab News regrets the error.

 

****

RIYADH, 16 April 2007 - Starting today, ex-Saudi OFWs arriving in the Kingdom with new companies and contracts have to provide their old passports stamped with a “No Objection Certificate” (NOC) from their previous employers.

 

The Saudi Arabian Embassy in the Philippines outlined the new directives in a memo that was circulated on April 4, which comes into effect today. The new directive is in response to an increase in numbers of complaints by many Saudi firms, whose Filipino workers have ran away.

 

Osama Basim, not his real name, told Arab News that his company recruited young inexperienced graduates from the Philippines for various real estate projects. After a few months they started disappearing one-by-one. Later he learned that they had gone to work elsewhere for better pay. Basim believes the new directive will stop this practice from continuing.

 

The new memo is said to affect thousands of OFWs intending to return to the Kingdom and hundreds of recruitment agencies in the Philippines.

 

The circular stated, “Effective April 16, all visa applicants, except domestic helpers, are required to submit old passports together with their visa applications. Those without old passports must submit a Department of Foreign Affairs certificate that their passports are their first.”

 

Another restriction mentioned in the memo is that even if the OFW has an NOC in his passport, the job category that he is applying for in his new job should be the same as the category of his previous job.

 

These two rules will reduce the number of OFWs that qualify for work in the Kingdom in both the professional and skilled categories, since very few employers readily agree to issue NOCs to departing OFWs.

 

Recruitment agencies with pending job orders will now have to choose workers with NOCs in their passports (old or new) and match those workers with the visa categories supplied by employers.

 

Saudi Arabia is the largest market for OFWs with 200,000 Filipinos entering the Kingdom on either first time and renewed contracts. There are close to one million Filipinos living in the Kingdom.

 

Compounding the problems facing recruitment agencies is the refusal of the Saudi Embassy in Manila to accredit newly licensed agencies for visa attestations, applications for visa stamping and the release of stamped visas.

 

Hundreds of newly licensed agencies by the POEA are faced with this problem and have to spend extra funds for accredited agencies with the Saudi Embassy to release visas.

 

Saudi Arabia Restricts Re-Entry of Ex-OFWs
Abdul Hannan Faisal Tago, Arab News

By ofwempowerment Posted in Others

Online Magazine for Filipinos Worldwide, etc.

Just found an interesting online magazine today. Excerpt of an article I read hereinbelow:

Textbooks say that the Philippines is composed of 7,100 islands. The truth is, no one knows exactly how many there are at any given point, it depends on the tide. So it is with Philippine culture. There are so many different influences that come into the mix that a homogenous culture is hard to define and I am not going to even attempt to do so. Instead, what I will do in the next 10 minutes or so is give you a quick psychographic handle on the culture by speaking on the top 4 influences on our culture and some marketing dos and don’ts. To do so I am going to have to make some sweeping generalizations to which there are many many exemptions, so please keep that in mind. I will end by teaching you two tricks to find out if someone is Filipino and to actually pass for one yourselves.

Read more…. click banner below

 

**********

 

Filipino Electrical Practitioners should take a look at my brother DOODS new blog entry. Prologue  provided below:

 

In one afternoon of July 1999, four explosions in succession were heard over the whole plant area, the last of which was the loudest. One of the four XLPE 500 MCM phase “X1″ (Phase “A”) main secondary conductors of the 5 MVA, 69KV/4.16KV Substation “B” developed an single-line-to-ground fault with the steel structure supporting the cables & the AVR by-pass switch. All the four events of faults did not trip the 69 KV SF6 primary circuit breaker that could have isolated the fault. The fourth fault eventually melted & cut-off the faulted cable while cutting a portion of the 8″ steel channel member of the structure.

 

Interested?  Click CESEEPS to view the series of entries under “A PROLOGUE TO FAULT CALCULATIONS“.

By ofwempowerment Posted in Others

First to Vote – OAV Riyadh Update

OFWC Pres. Alex Bello (First day of Voting Period)

OFWC Pres. Alex Bello (First day of Voting Period)

4/14/07,Riyadh, Saudi Arabia - OFW Congress-Riyadh President Mr. Alex Veloso Bello is urging Filipino community leaders in Saudi Arabia to set an example to their members by casting their votes early this week.

A call received from Mr. Alex Bello who is now at Philippine Embassy, one of the first Absentee Voters who sacrificed the first hours of his work and instead give time to go to Embassy to exercise his right of suffrage.

Filcom Leader Mr.Romeo Sinamban and wife

Filcom Leader Mr.Romeo Sinamban and wife

 Early absentee voters who cast their votes includes Mr. Romeo Sinamban, head of Capampangan Riyadh Workers Association (CARIWA) and his wife.

Alex Veloso Bello asked community leaders to provide necessary information to our Embassy and Consulate the fax numbers of their members whose companies employing considerable numbers of OFW absentee voters for our Philippine Mission in KSA to do the following:

1)     Informing the companies of the conduct of the 2007 elections,

2)     Request to allow Filipino employees to cast their votes;

3)     Provide appropriate transportation to the voting venue; and

4)     To schedule their employees during the weekdays in order to avoid the long lines during Thursday and Fridays.

H.E. Ambassador Tony Villamor inspecting CLOAV

H.E. Ambassador Tony Villamor inspecting CLOAV

“Lets do our share to encourage our members to “Go Out and Vote” and participate in the election process”, Alex Bello added.

(L-R) Romy Sinamban, Vice Consul Gerardo Abiog, Attache Delsa Deriada & Alex Bello

(L-R) Romy Sinamban, Vice Consul Gerardo Abiog, Attache Delsa Deriada & Alex Bello

OFW Congress-Ruh is spearheading a campaign “ANG BOTO MO MAHALAGA! BANTAYAN MO!”

OFWC Executive Council and participating member organizations will conduct the campaign starting today 14 April 2007 to May 14, 2007 up to the counting and canvassing of votes in Riyadh. ### BongA

I’m proud of you Anak!

Year of 1996, it was a month vacation in Philippines when I got married in a civil wedding. After I finished my contract in Jeddah, KSA I decided to go home for good and married my wife in Church.  

 

Without savings as an OFW for 4 years I found myself again at the doorsteps of recruitment agencies in Makati and Manila.

 

Year 1998, a precious treasure came into our life - my only daughter “Angel“.  It was the same year that I decided to work back again in KSA; Angel then was 4 months old.

 

Can’t afford to rent an apartment in early days of my married life, a good friend of my wife and her former workmate in Japan provided us place to stay in San Pedro Laguna. Trying to make both ends met when my wife got pregnant with Angel, I worked as a clerk and construction worker in various local construction companies in Manila while waiting for my employment back abroad.

 

Today, almost 9 years am still here as an OFW away from my loved ones. Those past years were very trying times; in my absence my family had been a wanderer from place to place, from Laguna to Cavite, then to Agusan Del Norte, to Mandaue and now at last in Lapu Lapu City.

 

Thanks to PAGIBIG Fund Overseas Program for OFWs and OWWA loan facilities, without the said Government institutions I may not be able to provide them a descent house – a house called home for my family.

 

By July, Angel will be 9 years old, it is just a blink of an eye and knowing from my wife that Angel is 2nd Honor in their class  (Science Technology Education Center) is enough wonderful news to an OFW father like me.

 

I may not be able to convey the exact feeling to you in person but in words “I’m proud of you Anak” from the bottom of my heart.   

By ofwempowerment Posted in OFW Life

Diplomatic Initiative

Labor Secretary Arturo Brion and his UAE counterpart Dr. Ali Bin Al-Kaabi had just recently signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to further improve the welfare and protection of overseas Filipino workers in the emirates. 

 

Why not doing it in KSA?

 

Diplomatic initiative for the welfare and protection of OFWs should be given priority by our Philippine Mission abroad, the Philippine Overseas Labor Office in particular. It could be done if our POLO offices will aggressively pursue active negotiations with the host country to strengthen the welfare mechanisms for the protection of our workers rights.

 

These could perhaps lessen or maybe eliminate the issue of Contract Substitution in KSA. 

 

DOLE Secretary Arturo Brion should act on it before his reign will expire and be transferred as Associate Justice of Supreme Court in a day’s time. Isang hindi makalimutang pamana ang dapat iwanan ng isang magiting na Kalihim ng Paggawa sa manggagawang Pinoy sa Saudi Arabia.

 

In an email message received from POLO Riyadh Welfare Officer Bo Mercado in reply to our inquiry on the latest developments in UAE, he said “As for the latest developments on the KSA front regarding the employment of OFWs, we are discussing these, in fact, we were at the office during the holidays meeting with other POLOs. We will provide you with updates as soon as any becomes available”.

 

Abangan po namin ito Sir! Kami po ay umaasa.   

On his way to serve

February 17, 2006 a small barangay in St. Bernard town of Southern, Leyte named Guinsaugon was buried with mudslide. The tragedy that claimed hundreds of lives, young and old shock the nation and the entire world.

In KSA, an urgent call for monetary and relief goods made a significant contributions for the survivors of the said tragedy.      

Sir Fredo Pamaos & Sen. Chiz Escudero

Sir Fredo Pamaos & Sen. Chiz Escudero

Today, a political neophyte is running for mayor in the town of St. Bernard to help building back the ruins brought by the mentioned catastrophe.

 A schoolteacher for 9 years, before spending the next 31 years as DILG Assistant Provincial Director, independent mayoralty candidate Mr. Fredo Pamaos with his platform of governance is on his way to serve the people of St. Bernard more particularly in Guinsaugon.

 Sir Fredo Pamaos is a graduate of Agricultural Education and Masters in Public Administration. Armed with the above experienced in public service is quite enough a good qualification that the voters of St. Bernard must consider when casting their votes.

Don’t blame POEA New FDH Policy

Online news : RP envoy in Bahrain warns vs illegal recruitment of maids

 

My Reaction: Illegal recruitment of maids should not be blamed on the POEA new household policy. We all knew that illegal recruitment even in the absence of such policy is there already many long years ago.

 

Maids and beauticians in Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and other Middle Eastern countries entered legally with the help of licensed recruitment agencies in connivance with other government agencies that issued faked documentations to alter their true age and even identities.

 

This legal entry but illegally acquired documents will later on surfaces when the maids are rape and abused. Raped because of young age, presko at mabango. Abused because the young maids don’t know how to work using modern cleaning device, worst even don’t know nothing about simple household task.

 

These are the facts and as long as our domestic economy can’t create more jobs and pay decent and living wages for Filipinos, working abroad by hook or by crook will be an option. And after suffering the consequences, we cried and blame our government for the burden that we personally created. 

 

These activities proliferate because people provide a market for them ignoring all government effort to warn people not to deal with this kind of illegal activities. We should encourage our citizens not to ignore our laws and policies.

 

The Government on the other hand particularly the agencies or institutions overseeing to protect the migrant sectors should implement laws and policies effectively with iron hand to curb irregular migration.

 

Likewise our citizenry should guard and report incidents detrimental to the protection of migrant workers rights in the country of their destination, where laws and policies is not governed by any bilateral agreements that addresses illegal migration-related problems. 

Kuya Ted as official Candidate

Abalos Confirms Kuya Ted as official Senatorial Candidate

 

In a public forum held in San Francisco in April 4, 2007, Comelec Chairman Benjamin S. Abalos restored the name of Kuya Ted in the official list of senatorial candidates. Abalos personally phoned the Comelec office in Manila to carry out the necessary correction in the list of official senatorial candidates.  

 

The forum participants, composed of local and global Filipino community leaders, briefed Abalos that following the issuance of the Comelec March 22, 2007 en banc ruling on Kuya Ted’s candidacy, Kuya Ted timely filed a motion for reconsideration. Therefore, the Comelec ruling did not become final and executory.

 

Pending Comelec action on the motion for reconsideration, Kuya Ted continues to be an official candidate for senator.  

 

The forum also advised Abalos that the case papers are ready for submission to the Supreme Court if Comelec rules adversely on the motion for reconsideration. Should the case reach the Supreme Court, Kuya Ted’s lawyers expect a restraining order that would put Comelec’s possible adverse ruling on hold - thus paving the way for Kuya Ted to continue to be an official senatorial candidate.

 

The forum participants advised Abalos that the first premise of the Comelec March 22nd ruling casting doubt on the fact of Kuya Ted’s citizenship was, in fact, erroneous.  

 

Consular officials who processed Kuya Ted’s dual citizenship papers in 2003 were present during the forum. They confirmed Kuya Ted’s dual citizenship, citing the fact that the Bureau of Immigration’s rules and regulations of 2004 came after the initial processing by the Dept. of Foreign Affairs in accordance with the law.  

 

The lawyers present in the forum emphasized that BI’s subsequent rules and procedures cannot be applied retroactively.

 

The forum participants also briefed Abalos about the unconstitutionality of Sec. 5 of R.A. 9225, which requires dual citizens running for public office to renounce foreign citizenship before a Philippine public official.

 

It was pointed out that Art. VI, Sec. 3 of the Constitution prescribes three qualifications for senatorial candidates: minimum 35 years of age, natural born Filipino and 2-year residency. Legal authorities and jurisprudence point to the fact that no law can add to or subtract from the qualifications.

 

Besides, the forum participants pointed out, Sec. 5 of R.A. 9225 is unjust, discriminatory and prejudicial. They referred to the practice of at least 85 countries that allow dual citizens to run for public office in their motherlands.

 

The forum participants called attention to the renunciation of their foreign citizenship by some dual citizens who are candidates for Philippine public offices have no legal effect in their adopted countries, i.e., they remain citizens of the adopted countries.

 

Hence, it was pointed out during the forum, Sec. 5 of R.A. 9225 is meaningless.

 

Abalos concluded at the end of the forum that Comelec’s role is to implement the letter of the law and it is up to the Supreme Court to rule on its constitutionality.

 

GLOBAL FILIPINOS COALITION   GLOBAL FILIPINO  FORUM

Time to Browse

Thursday in KSA is a relaxing day that give me time to browse my favorite blogs in my link.

 

Here are some that I found interesting:

 

Philippine without border is telling us, Filipino voters how important is the May Midterm election. If we make a mess out of it, then it would be doubly hard to recover the respect gain as a result of our initial success in global outsourcing and electronics exports.

 

Entrepinoys as usual is my favorite blog not because the owner is an OFW who is also based here in Riyadh but a nice entry like “estimated investment requirements to start Internet rental business” is commendable to read.

 

In politics, nasipit to anywhere give me an exact scene of what is happening in our hometown local politics. A Mayoralty fight between a pure Nasipitnon and an outsider belong to a powerful political clan (Plaza) in our province. May the best public servant win.

 

Lastly,  Ranie Ashe an OFW in Israel in his latest entry  “Good Luck to all”  is worth reading.

 

Have a happy weekend fellow OFWs in KSA.    

 

By ofwempowerment Posted in Others

Absentee Voters Go Out and Vote

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, March 31, 2007-OFW Congress-Riyadh, a group participated by various organizations in Riyadh made an appeal to Filipino Community leaders in a meeting held at Al Mutlaq, Hotel  on March 30, 2007  urging their members who are registered voters to Go Out and be part of the 2nd Overseas Absentee Voting exercise that will commence on April 14 to May 14, 2007. 

The meeting dubbed as “Voters Education Forum” focuses on the importance of selecting good candidates that possess leadership qualities so with identifying their position on certain issues more particularly those relevant to OFW issues and concerns.

Profiles of the 36 senatorial bets declared as official candidates of the Comelec were likewise presented to attendees.

OFWC Pres. Mr. Alex Veloso BelloPresented to Attendees the Profiles of the 36 Senatorial CandidatesEngr. Faizal Sharque, OFWC Director General for Membership in his opening remarks said “the forum is part of the ongoing voters’ education program of the OFWC. The forum will guide community leaders how to judge the right candidate and come up for the right choice”. Hard and soft copies of the presentations were distributed to the attendees for dissemination purposes. Engr. Sharque emphasized further in his message that in order to strengthen the advocacies the group has been called for, OFWC are accepting organizations, leaders and individuals willing to participate and get involved to the tasks in a greater vision for the betterment of fellow OFWs and their families at home. OFW Congress-Riyadh structure allows participation of organizations and leaders community-wide. Ten Filipino groups were added during the meeting.  
 

Manuel “Bong” Amora, Secretary General of OFWC during the presentation give emphasis that the fight has not yet ended when the OAV was enacted into law. Amora said ”the fight must continue; our real battle is in the arena of the Hall of Congress where the voice of the OFWs can be heard”; he added that “it is not just the right to vote but to be voted upon, for  OFWs to get involved in shaping our country to move forward”.ccc

 

 

 

Mr. Romeo Sinamban of Capampangan Riyadh Workers Association, Engr. Mohammad Mua of the Union Muslim Association together with Engr. Faisal Sharque, a former OFW Party List group nominee and presently the head of Filipino Retirees Employees Overseas Movement, jointly made an appeal among Overseas Filipinos for unity and should join hands together to pursue the OFW dream of having a true representation in Congress. 

 

OFWC President Mr. Alex Veloso Bello made an announcement that Overseas Filipinos using the resources of electronic messaging created an e-group named “Partido Pangdaigdigang Pilipino”, an online forum primarily formed for a purpose of bringing the voice of overseas Filipinos in putting up a national party for the OFW Sector. PPP e-group is gaining more members worldwide. It is a brainchild of Engr. Jun Aguilar, chairman of Philippine based Filipino Migrant Workers Group, a former OFW employed as a technical analyst at the King Abdul Aziz Military Academy in Saudi Arabia and presently a successful businessman at home.    

It was also included in the presentation the role of the Filipino Community in Riyadh in the 1st OAV exercise in which the “Spirit of Volunteerism” has proved that unity can be achieved through the participation of the various communities in overseeing peaceful and orderly conduct of the election process.

However, the group after intense deliberation arrived into conclusion t
hat the role of the community in the next electoral exercise will focus on safeguarding the sanctity of the ballots to ensure an honest conduct of the election at the Philippine Embassy ground.  

Incumbent President Mr. Alex Veloso Bello during the said forum moved for an on the spot election for a new set of OFWC officers. However, majority of the participating organizations and members of the Executive Council unanimously deferred the motion for the reason that there are more important issues to tackle rather than a change of leadership.  

OFW Congress-Riyadh was founded in Year 1998. The original 21 Executive Council members were elected into office among community organizations that were formed by parties. The election and the efforts to make it a reality were unmistakably a show of unity among community organizations in Riyadh.  For four election days spread over two weeks, thousands lined up to exercise their right of suffrage, whose votes took volunteers many nights, in fact, weeks to tabulate and the rest is history. 

As an advocacy group OFWC passed a number of resolutions and recommendations on national issues pertains to OFW concerns. Though it was not properly recognized and acknowledge by those in sitting authorities yet a number of its recommendations were heard and acted upon by the past and present administration. 

Past Presidents of OFWC were Mr. Alexander Sanchez, Engr. Isagani Manalo and Mr. Joey Badong.

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At the opening of the program proper, a PowerPoint presentation titled “OAV Reminiscing” was presented. It showed how OFWs fought for the OAV bill and the significant role of the OFWs in Saudi Arabia that made contribution in the history of the passage of Overseas Absentee Voting Law that lasted for 15 years.