OFW Political Empowerment 2016

OFW representation in Congress

The Philippine Election 2016 is fast approaching. It will be held on May next year and being at home, I can feel and smell the preparation of some politicians in the surrounding community that I belong. Even in TV ads, some Presidentiables are busy making their own “papogi points” to the public. Of course, it’s part of their strategy to win the public sentiment on national issues at hand.

Talking about OFW Political empowerment, the OFWs were able to get a seat in Congress through the OFW Family Party List group who made it in the last 2013 election. Truly, we are proud that OFWs are finally represented in Congress since 14 years when former Congressman Sid Aligada and  Omar Fajardo were appointed by former President Fidel Ramos to represent OFWs in the Philippine lower house of Congress.

But frankly, I can’t feel of any changes being made or introduced on the various issues of government policies that concerns our OFWs. I am not against Congressman Roy Seneres and in fairness, the good Congressman filed several bills in Congress since he assumed office yet none of them made it to the President’s desk. Surprisingly, I read an online article that he is eyeing for 2016 Presidential election. That, I have so much doubt that he can even reach number  10 in the list of the highest votes for the Presidency. Well, for me 750 thousand votes are not enough to change the course of history from Congress to Presidency. My sincere apology to the former Ambassador, that’s only my opinion and I am entitled to it. However, if the good former Ambassador will stick to where he is now and ask his colleagues in Congress to prioritize his bills, then Sir, you have my one vote again.

OFW Political Empowerment in barangay level


Photo taken from the website of Barangay Info System-Davao

During the 2013 barangay election there were 53,786,223 registered Filipino voters according to COMELEC website It means out of 101 Million Philippine population (taken from  worldometers) half of our population are registered voters.

How many per cent of OFW family comprised a mere barangay?  According to my neighbour who works at the local office of the Philippine Statistics Authority, in one particular barangay in Cebu, OFWs is comprised of 5% of the barangay population. Each family of that 5% population has 4 to 5 family members who are registered voters. Good enough for an OFW (former OFW or OFW family members or relatives) who wants to run as a barangay councilman with a 2,500 votes for a barangay population that consist of 10,000 registered voters.

Perhaps, the continuing saga in our fight for OFW political empowerment must start in barangay level. So, by representing the concerns of OFWs in a barangay or in many barangays around the Philippine archipelago, then the national scene will follow.

According to the April to September 2014 statistical report by Grace Bersales of Philippine Statistics Authority, there was an estimated 2.3 million Overseas Contract Workers (OCWs/OFWs) or those with existing work contract comprised 96.0 per cent (2.2 million) of the total OFWs.  The rest (4.0% or 92,000) worked overseas without contract.

The total of 2,392,000 OFWs plus  five of their families back home can even move a mountain apart to put a President in Malacanang with a total of 11,960,000 votes; near enough to what President Aquino garnered in 2010 presidential election.

Well that’s only a simple presumption, nonetheless  Benjamin Banneker, an African American scientist once said “presumption should never make us neglect that which appears easy to us, nor despair make us lose courage at the sight of difficulties.”

That’s the reason why I am advocating Overseas Absentee Voting registration and requesting those  975,263 Overseas Absentee Voters worldwide to update your voting status, especially to those 237,504 registered voters who failed to vote in the previous Philippine national election.

To my fellow OFWs, talk to your families back home, ask them to participate in the October 2016 barangay election and through them, we can now empower by representing our OFW sector in the barangay level.BongA    

OEC-BM Online Processing


H.E. Ezzedin Tago & Hon. POEA Admin Cacdac

H.E. Ambasador Ezzedin Tago & Hon. POEA Admin Hans Cacdac

During the Filipino Community meeting with DOLE Secretary Baldoz at the Philippine Embassy, the Honorable POEA Administrator Hans Cacdac was with her. Admin. Cacdac announced to the attendees about the POEA OEC-BM Online Processing. It is indeed a good project by the POEA, and I salute POEA Admin Cacdac for this very useful initiative.

 I humbly request our government particularly those agencies overseeing the plight of OFWs to start planning or think something that could be beneficial for us OFWs rather than issuing a Memorandum Circular forcing us OFWs to pay P550 terminal fee in the cost of an airline ticket. 

By the way, thanks to the court ruling last November 19 issued by Judge Tingaraan Guiling of Pasay RTC Branch 109 by declaring MIAA’s Memorandum Circular No. 8 as “unenforceable” for a mere reason that  the Memorandum Circular did not comply with the legal requirement that it must be published in the Official Gazette or any newspaper of general circulation 15 days before its implementation.

I’m sure MIAA will file a motion for reconsideration if allowed by court and I just hope our court will later rule the MC No. 8 with finality that it is “unconstitutional” in violation to Republic Act 10022 (Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipinos Act of. 1995) that prohibits the collection of travel tax and terminal fee for OFWs who possess valid Overseas Exemption Certificates.

Back to OEC-BM Online Processing, I tried to apply online but unfortunately the facility only caters OFWs to POEA offices in the Philippines. It means up to this writing, those OFWs who wish to set an appointment for your OEC to POLO offices at the site of employment has yet to be operational online. You can see below screen shot of the online facility in red arrow showing that the said locations are “coming soon”. To those OFWs already in the Philippines, please try to point your location to your areas where you are now and check the availability of the given dates to set an appointment after you’ve done filling out the online form.

Surely it can lessen the waiting time because an OFW has the slot, but just to make sure you’ll be there on time and you have all the necessary documents with you like passport and previous payment receipts as required in obtaining an Overseas Employment Certificate.

To those who haven’t visited the site online, please click this link: OEC Balik-Manggagawa Online Processing  and simply follow the instruction.

Frequently Asked Questions: click here >>>>BALIK-MANGGAGAWA (BM) ONLINE   PROCESSING SYSTEM

To POEA, MABUHAY Kayo! Keep up the good work in the service to OFWs. – BongA


Fig. 1- POEA Appointment Offices outside PHL “Coming Soon”


Fig. 2 – Slots Available in POEA Cebu Office

Saudi-Philippine labor pact formally takes effect

Philippine Labor Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz and Saudi Deputy Labor Minister Mufarrej bin Saad Al-Haqbani exchange documents after signing the labor agreement. (AN photo)

Philippine Labor Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz and Saudi Deputy Labor Minister Mufarrej bin Saad Al-Haqbani exchange documents after signing the labor agreement. (AN photo)

RIYADH: Philippine Labor Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz and Saudi Deputy Labor Minister Mufarrej bin Saad Al-Haqbani signed a labor agreement Sunday on the hiring of Filipino household service workers (HSWs). Al-Haqbani signed on behalf of Labor Minister Adel Fakeih.“The agreement is historic and today is a very significant day in Philippine-Saudi bilateral relations,” said Baldoz. The agreement is the first by the Saudi Ministry of Labor with a manpower-supplying country.

“This agreement heralds an era of stronger bilateral labor cooperation between the Philippines and Saudi Arabia for the protection and welfare of Filipino HSWs in the Kingdom,” she said.

The agreement comes after Saudi Arabia and the Philippines agreed on a standard labor contract last year, which shall govern the employment of HSWs in the Kingdom.

The Saudi Press Agency reported that the agreement is for five years and can be extended automatically for similar periods. It will also incorporate the formation of a joint working group to meet on a regular basis to discuss and resolve the problems of HSWs who include housemaids, baby sitters, laundrywomen, family drivers, cooks and gardeners.

“We expect that 60,000 out of an estimated 670,000 OFWs in Saudi Arabia will immediately benefit from this agreement, which lays down areas of cooperation between the two countries,” Baldoz said.

The agreement includes the following:

1. A mutually acceptable recruitment and deployment system;

2. The recruitment of domestic workers through agencies that practice ethical recruitment and are licensed by their respective governments;

3. Prohibition of charging or deducting any cost attendant to recruitment and deployment from the worker’s salary;

4. The right of recourse to authorities in case of contractual disputes in accordance with applicable laws and regulations;

5. Legal measures against recruitment offices, companies or agencies for any violation of applicable laws, rules and regulations; and

6. Resolution of any issue arising from the implementation and enforcement of the agreement.

read more>>>>>

Advisory: OAVs Who Failed to Vote Twice


The Philippine Embassy in Riyadh informs all concerned Overseas Absentee Voters (OAVoters) in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia that the deadline for filing of manifestations of intent to vote by OAVoters who failed to vote twice in 2007 and 2010 has been extended to 11 January 2013.

"It is only when you exercise your right to choose that you can also exercise your right to change”

“It is only when you exercise your right to choose that you can also exercise your right to change”

The Philippine Embassy in Riyadh received instructions from the Commission on Elections, through the Overseas Absentee Voting Secretariat (DFA-OAVS), of the promulgation by Comelec on 14 December 2012 of Resolution No. 9578 which extends the deadline for filing of manifestations of intent to vote by OAVoters who failed to vote twice to 11 January 2013.

Comelec Resolution No. 9578 extends the deadline set for filing said manifestations under Resolution No. 9567.

Under Comelec’s resolutions, Overseas Absentee Voters (OAVoters) who failed to vote twice during the National Elections in 2007 and 2010 will be deleted from the National Registry of Overseas Absentee Voters (NROAV) unless they submit a manifestation of their intent to vote by 11 January 2013.

Only registered OAVoters whose names appear in the NROAV will be allowed to vote in the 2013 Nationals Elections.


Check if your name is included in the list of OAVs who failed to vote twice. To access the list, copy and paste any of the below links to your web browser’s URL address tab:

From Comelec’s website at:


From DFA-OAVS at http://dfa-oavs.gov.ph/images/pdf/failedtovote.pdf

If your name is in the list and you intend to vote in 2013 at the Philippine Embassy or Consulate where you are registered as OAV, submit a manifestation of intent to vote through the following options:

Option 1: Submit the manifestation of intent to vote to the Philippine Embassy in Riyadh, Diplomatic Quarter, Riyadh.

Option 2: Submit the manifestation of intent to vote directly to COAV online at www.comelec.gov.ph/coav or through fax at fax number (+632) 521 2952.

Option 3: Submit the manifestation of intent to vote directly with the Commission on Overseas Absentee Voting (COAV) at COMELEC in Intramuros, Manila

Deadline of submission of manifestations of intent to vote is on 11 January 2013. END


Recruitment agencies violating placement fee policies face penalty – POEA


Administrator Hans Leo J. Cacdac yesterday said the POEA will cancel the license of recruitment agencies found collecting excessive placement fees from applicants or charging placement fees from workers seeking employment in countries which have laws that prohibit the same.  

poeaCacdac also advised Filipino jobseekers to pay the placement fee only if they have signed an employment contract and a receipt corresponding to the amount paid is issued to them, and to avoid licensed recruiters that continue to defy the government’s placement fee policy which is clearly defined in various promulgations.  

DOLE Department Order No. 34, Series of 1996, POEA Governing Board Resolution No. 2, series of 1998, and POEA Memorandum Circular No. 14, Series of 1999 authorize a recruitment agency to collect from its hired workers “an amount equivalent to one month salary, exclusive of documentation and processing costs”.

Section 2 b, Rule 1, Part 6 of the 2002 POEA Rules and Regulations prohibits “charging or accepting directly or indirectly any amount greater than that specified in the schedule of allowable fees prescribed by the Secretary, or making a worker pay any amount greater than that actually received by him as a loan or advance.”  

Cacdac said there is total prohibition on charging placement fees from Filipino household service workers, seafarers, and workers for deployment to countries which disallows placement fee collection.  

Charging placement fees from Filipino household service workers is prohibited under POEA Governing Board Resolution No. 6, Series of 2006.  

Section 2 c, Rule 1, Part 6 of the POEA Rules defines as a recruitment violation any act of “charging or collecting placement fee for deployment to countries where the prevailing system, either by law, policy or practice, do not allow the charging or collection of placement and recruitment fees”. The POEA Rules also exempt seafarers from paying placement fees.  

Countries like United Kingdom, Ireland, Norway, and the Netherlands do not allow the collection of placement fee by recruitment agencies from foreign workers because the employer is paying the cost of placement and recruitment services.  

The prohibition is also applicable to agencies that are deploying workers to the Canada provinces of Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta, and British Columbia.  

Cacdac said that hiring of foreign workers in occupations that usually require a high school diploma or a maximum of 2 years of job-specific training (level C and D) under the Pilot Project of the Government of Canada is also covered by the prohibition on collection of placement fee. Under the prevailing policy of the Canada government, employers shall cover all recruitment costs related to the hiring of foreign workers.  

The ‘no placement fee’ policy also covers agencies deploying workers to the U.S.A., including Guam, Cacdac said.  

POEA Memorandum Circular No.10, Series of 2009 orders that licensed recruitment agencies recruiting Filipino workers under the H2B program for the United States, including Guam, are strictly prohibited from charging any placement and recruitment fees from Filipino workers bound for these destinations.  

The United States’ Department of Homeland Security on 18 January 2009, has implemented regulatory changes to the H2B visa classification used for foreign workers seeking employment in the United States and Guam. Under the new rules, the cost of recruitment of these workers must be borne by employers and the charging or collection of placement fee by an employer, agent, facilitator, recruiter or similar employment service provider from workers under the H2B visa category or temporary skilled labor is illegal. Cacdac said violation of the “no placement fee” policy is a serious administrative offense with a penalty of cancellation of license under Section 1-A (5) of Rule IV, Part VI of the POEA Rules and Regulations Governing the Recruitment and Employment of Land based Workers.  

Cacdac further urged applicants to report to POEA any recruitment agency that charges excessive placement fees or collect fees which are not sanctioned by other countries.

POEA Advisory July 2012


Marhaban and Good Luck! “Philippine Delegation to KSA”


Philippine Government officials are here to represent the executive branch of the Philippine government on its  4th phase of discussion with their Saudi government counterpart on Tuesday and Wednesday, November 27 and 28 to be held at Riyadh Conference Palace Hall. 

Riyadh Conference Palace

The Technical working committee of both sides will tackle areas of cooperation between Philippines and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as mandated by Article 7 of the General Agreement signed by both countries in 1994. The technical committee will finally discuss areas of cooperation in the field of trade, investments, labor, education,   transportation and others.

This meeting is in continuance of the ongoing bilateral talks between KSA-Philippine Joint Technical Committee to consult each other and identify the measures and means  in order to promote and consolidate particular areas of cooperation.  

I hope that the two countries may arrive into a mutual stance that would benefit its citizenry and their respective countries in general.  And in order to realize the outcome of this meeting, there should be a solid commitment from both sides to put whatever it is – into action.

Some important areas that should be concluded is how to expand its trade relations and study how to  lessen the burden in facilitating trade exchange of both export products that  enter their countries respectively. That includes setting up trade fairs to give way for new potentials of investments particularly in the field of agriculture and fisheries.   

Student exchange is also one important factor that could inspire both countries educational schemes and exchange of experiences in new technologies such as seminars, workshops, technical and vocational training; as well as scientific and cultural symposia in their respective educational institutions, universities and research centers. 

Security cooperation is also a crucial topic that should be addressed during the meeting. Possible collaboration on this regards, like information exchange related to security matters that threatens the safety of its countries and their nationals respectively.

PHL-KSA Friendship Pins

The committee should come up a new agreement in the field of transportation such as the return of Philippine Airlines flight from Philippines to Saudi Arabia and vice versa in order to meet pressing demands of huge numbers of Filipino passengers. However, flights should be equally divided between SAUDIA and PAL and strip off unnecessary taxes currently imposed to airline companies on both sides of the fence. 

Last but not the least, a bilateral labor agreement on the just concluded developments by both countries forging a new standard contract for Filipino Household Service Workers should be thoroughly implemented by way of redefining the rights and obligations of the Saudi Recruitment Agency (SRA) and the Philippine Recruitment Agency (PRA) in case one of the contracting party fails to perform, precisely and exactly, his/her obligations under the Standard Employment Contract.

Further, I hope that this committee meeting would pave the way for wrapping up the finalization of the Recruitment Agreement between SRA and the PRA. This agreement is needed in the resumption of the deployment of HSW in the Kingdom.

Lastly, if the KSA-Philippine Joint Technical Committee was able come up a standard contract for HSW, how come that the committee cannot crop up a one standard uniform contract   for skilled Filipino workers** ?

** This particular contract  could not be substituted with any other contract when the deployed worker arrive at site)   

Well, good luck to our Philippine delegation and have a nice Saudi winter day ahead of you!

By: BongA

OFWs’ plight tops Aquino agenda in Laos–envoy

Vientiane, Lao People’s Democratic Republic—The plight and protection of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) will figure prominently in President Aquino’s talks with European leaders during the 9th Asia Europe Meeting Summit (Asem) here, according to Philippine Ambassador Lumen Isleta.

Isleta said that among the many topics to be taken up in the biennial gathering of Asian and European leaders, President Aquino will give priority to issues related to migration.

Europe is host to many Filipino workers. The majority of the merchant marine fleet of Norway, for instance, is manned by Filipino seafarers.

“In the talks of the President with Europe as a whole, migration will figure quite prominently in the topics he will raise,” Isleta said.

Energy security is another matter the President intends to highlight, she said. The Asem Summit is expected to tackle various issues, including the euro zone crisis, climate change, sustainable development, and economic and financial setbacks.

Mr. Aquino is also expected to seek support for the Bangsamoro, the autonomous region to be formed in accordance with the recently signed peace agreement with the secessionist Moro Islamic Liberation Front.

It is not certain if the territorial disputes in the South China Sea would be on the agenda.

The President’s focus on migration comes on the heels of a recent analysis of the International Labor Organization (ILO) showing that domestic workers in Europe, including Filipinos, continued to be prone to abuse.

According to the ILO, the existence of laws for domestic workers has not been enough to protect them, with weak compliance and gaps in legislation.

Though there are labor inspectors, few domestic workers are eager to report or denounce their employers, it said.

Wrong perception

It further said that the failure to follow the laws was related to the perception of some people that domestic work was not a real form of employment. Many of the domestic workers in Europe are in the informal economy, and include illegal migrants. read more 

Taken from Phil. Daily Inquirer online news (4/11/2012)

Let’s help PHLPost to stand the test of time


I remember when I was a kid my late mother asked me to collect parcels and packages coming from my sister who worked as a nurse in United States of America and later  collect my late father’s SSS pension to our town’s post office. It was indeed fresh in my mind that we rose early in the morning just to avoid the long queue that usually seen every day in the town’s post office. It was formerly named Bureau of Posts.

Today, we even seldom see people standing in front of the receiving and mailing windows in all post offices found in every town of the Philippine archipelago. Sad to say that the government institution that provides postal services to Filipinos for over 250 years is now overtaken by the rapid development of new technology and the continuing landscape of the online world.

I am glad that the present administration is serious in their program to revive the ailing postal service into a profitable institution and with a budget of P640M, the ongoing rehabilitation is being monitored by PNoy  attaching PHLPost under the Office of the President. Not to mention that PHLPost is now at present a separate entity of the government owned Philippine Postal Savings Bank.

Standing L-R: George C. Guico, UFWCD Riyadh IT Coordinator; Ed Margarito Balais, UFWCD Riyadh Webmaster; Ernie Saplan Perez, UFWCD Riyadh, President; Cesar Gervacio, President PRGBII (Philippine Royal Guardians Brotherhood International Incorporated – PRGBII); Manuel “Bong” Amora, UFWCD Riyadh, Adviser; Vic Delos Santos- President, AFTTA (All Filipino Table Tennis Association); Stanley Arcilla, UFWCD Riyadh, Secretary; Henry Zosa, UFWCD, Riyadh Business Manager & Photographer; Habib Batua-President, FEMAS (Federation of Maranao Associations in Saudi Arabia) Sitting L-Rt: Postmaster General & CEO Hon. Josie Dela Cruz; Saudi Arabia Philippine Ambassador, H.E. Ezzedin Tago; Engr. Mama S. Lalanto Al Haj-Asst. Postmaster Gen.; Abdul Gaafar Dimalotang – President PhilMOWA (Philippine Muslim Overseas Workers Movement)


The just concluded marketing trip of PHLPost Postmaster General and CEO Josefina Dela Cruz in the Middle East, to provide PHLPost remittance service to overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) proved otherwise that it is now about time for the Philippine postal service to embark and embrace the new era of information technology.

Just like Philippine private banks, PHLPost will be launching in the Middle East its e-Postmo service, an electronic money transfer system through which OFWs can send money to the Philippines. Armed with post offices accessible in all locations throughout the Philippines, their beneficiaries will receive the amount on the same day of remittance and collect the exact amount remitted to them because PHLPost has no hidden charges. PHLPost program also includes door-to-door remittance service.

Philpost remittance service will be available very soon in Saudi Arabia, UAE and other GCC countries. Al-Rajhi Bank will be the PHLPost’s Saudi counterpart in the remittance service. Just go to the nearest post office or bank in the country where you are to remit your money. Various modes of delivery, such as cash pick-up at the post office, cash door-to-door delivery, credit to account, and postal money order.

 “The message of the visit is for the Filipino community to support PHLPost and help save the jobs of 11,000 postman and postwomen back home. The agency today has a different looks and vision, give chance for PHLPost to show to the Filipino people that it can” Filipino community leader Vic Delos Santos said.

Also, allow me say “let’s help PHLPost to stand the test of time, it is not just about profit and competition with the private sector, it is about preserving our country’s national heritage. – BongA

PHLPost executives will visit Riyadh to discuss new postal service for OFWs


12/09/2012 RIYADH:  The Philippine Postal Corporation, (Filipino: Korporasyong Koreo ng Pilipinas), is a government owned and controlled corporation responsible for providing postal services in the Philippines. The Philippine Postal Corporation has an estimated 13,800 employees and runs more than 2,000 post offices nationwide. PhilPost is based in the Philippines’s primary post office, the Manila Central Post Office, which overlooks the Pasig River. Previously PHLPOST was an attached agency of the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) and the  Commission on Information and Communication Technology (CICT).  

Its policy-making body is the Board of Directors, composed of seven members including the Postmaster General who serves simultaneously as the Chief Executive Officer of the corporation.

PHLPOST Brief History

* 1767 – Established as postal office in Manila.

* 1779 – Created as a postal district of Spain.

in 1783 Governor General Basco organized a postal system throughout the archipelago . First postage stamp was issued on February 1, 1854. 

* 1837 – Re-established as such on December 5.
* 1838 – Became a leading center of postal service.
* 1877 – Became a member of the Universal Postal Union.
* 1898 – Established as a postal service on the order of Philippine Revolution president, Emilio Aguinaldo.
* 1902 – Created as a bureau under the Department of Trade by virtue of Commission of the Philippines Act no. 426 on September 5.
* 1926 – Built in its present Neo-classic architecture.
* 1946 – Rebuilding after it was destroyed in World War II.
* 1987 – Named Postal Service Office under the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) by virtue of Executive Order no. 125 on April 13.
* 1992 – Became the Philippine Postal Corporation (its present name) by virtue of Republic Act No. 7354 on April 2.

Philippine Postal Corporation (PHLPost) and the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) officials during the signing of MOU in reconciliation of service records of GSIS contributions of PHLPost employees in Cabarroguis, Butuan City, Maasin, Lucena, and San Pablo City

From year 1998, the internet technology has significantly reduced the demand for postal service but last year during PHLPOST 228th Year Anniversary, a new theme was launched under the Aquino administration “PHLPOST: Bagong Simula Bagong Sigla”, a “New Beginning New Vigor”. Just last year, President Aquino placed PHLPost directly under the authority of the Office of the President through Executive Order 47 and allocated P644 million to support its efforts to revive the corporation.

PhilPost  with a new Chief Executive Officer in the person of former Bulacan Governor Josie Dela Cruz,  armed with a vision to rebuild the Philippine Postal Corporation, her mission – aims to revive the whole postal system thru more efficient way of servicing the public and; with her innovative and creative ideas THUSePostMo is born not only locally but hopefully, to serve Overseas Filipinos around the globe.

This Friday, 14 of September 2012, PHLPOST officials  to be led by the Postmaster General herself, Josie Dela Cruz  will meet the Filipino Community in Riyadh to discuss and offer  new services to OFWs  designed in today’s technology trend.  The lady Postmaster General in her speech during the launching of  its 20th year as corporate entity of the Government said “Let us leave the past behind because we can no longer change it. Let us look to the promise of tomorrow, through the intelligent use of today.”  She was referring to the Philippine Postal Corporation’s position in today’s  high tech world.  – BongA-

References:  Wikipedia, Phlpost website

R.A. 9262 “Hold Departure Order”

I received a number of comments and inquiries from our readers asking how to claim for support against their OFW spouses who’s been engage in extramarital affairs abroad, abandoning and withdrawing financial support to their children.

Stop_hand_caution_svgAsking for financial support to your spouse through your spouse employer abroad is not the answer to your problem. Mostly, employer’s will just ignore your complaint or claim against your spouse for a simple reason, they are not concern about their employees personal or family problem. The Embassy, POLO and OWWA offices abroad can only summon and give advice to the errant provider not to abandon their families back home. Other than that, nothing they can do.

As what I’ve said, the only best option is to file a complaint against your spouse in Philippine court concerning with your claim for support and request the court for the issuance of a Hold Departure Order.

Section 37 of RA 9262 “Anti-Violence Against Women and Their Children Act of 2004” expressly provides that the court can issue an HDO as part of a petition for a Protection Order (Temporary or a Permanent Protection Order). Section 36, Rule V of the Implementing Rules and Regulations of RA 9262 implements Section 37 of RA 9262.Upon the filing of a petition for a TPO or a PPO, the judge can on that same day issue an HDO to prevent the respondent (like an OFW leaving for abroad) from leaving the country while the petition is being heard. 

A hold-departure order is by no means permanent. Its lifetime co-exists with the pendency of the criminal case that led to the issuance of the order. If the accused is acquitted or if the criminal charges have been dismissed, the judgment of acquittal or the order of dismissal shall include therein the cancellation of the hold-departure order that may have been issued. The trial court is obligated to furnish the Department of Foreign Affairs and the Bureau of Immigration with a copy each of the judgment of acquittal or the order of dismissal within 24 hours from promulgation.

It should be noted that in addition to those hold-departure orders issued by the courts in criminal cases, the Department of Justice (DOJ), through DOJ Circular 41 (issued May 25, 2010), has affirmed its own prerogative to issue hold-departure orders against those accused in criminal cases falling within the jurisdiction of courts below the Regional Trial Courts, i.e., those punishable with prison terms below six years. The applicability, scope and extent of DOJ Circular 41 will almost certainly be clarified in the future by the Supreme Court.

Take note also that under the Supreme Court guidelines for RA 9262, there are ready made forms for a petition for a Protection Order and even an Affidavit of Indigency which families of OFWs can avail of.  Under the Supreme Court guidelines, the Office of the Clerk of Court (OCC) is mandated to help the petitioner in filling out the forms in strict confidentiality and in actually filing the petition. However that in several instances, the OCC has referred petitioners to go to the Public Attorneys Office (PAO).  -BongA

Source: The LawPhil Project, Arellano Law FoundationInquirer Global Nation, Business Mirror, Legal Updates

Paalam DILG Secretary Jesse Robredo


Ang OFW Empowerment BLog  ay nakikiramay sa pamilya, kamag-anak , mga kaibigan at sa buong bansa sa pagpanaw ni Department of Interior and Local Government Secretary Jesse Robredo.  Ang kanyang paglisan ay isang kawalan ng bansa sa isang  magiting at totoong lider  ng bansang Pilipinas.

Maalaala po namin kayo Kalihim Robredo bilang isang maka-Diyos at maka-Taong lider na ipinahayag ang tunay na katapatan bilang lingkod publiko ng bansang Pilipinas

May 1958 – August 2012

Kapag hayag at may pananagutan ang pamamahala, malalaman natin kung hanggang saan tayo nararapat na tulungan ng ating pamahalaang panlalawigan, bayan o panlungsod sapagkat magiging madali para sa ating makita kung magkano at ilan ang nakalaan sa bawat serbisyo publikong kinakailangang ipatupad.
DILG Sec. Jesse Robredo


Government Record

Appointed DILG secretary by President Aquino in 2010, Robredo, 54, was one of the most prominent figures among a rising generation of local officials becoming known on the national stage. His performance in Naga, where in 1988 he was elected mayor at the age of 29 – then the youngest city mayor in the Philippines – brought him national as well as international recognition.

Robredo was born on May 27, 1958, in Naga City. He is a second-generation Filipino-Chinese, and the third of five children of Jose Chan Robredo Sr. and Marcelina Manalastas.

He served the city for an unprecedented six 3-year terms, DILG records note, in 18 years, transforming Naga into the Bicol region’s premier city.

In 1996 he was named one of the Philippines’ Ten Outstanding Young Men (TOYM) as well as one of Ten Outstanding Young Persons  (TOYP) in the world. Two years later, at the age of 38, he won the Ramon Magsaysay Award for Government Service.

Asiaweek Magazine called Naga one of Asia’s Most Improved Cities, and credited Robredo with bringing dynamism and innovation to public service, the local bureaucracy, and community concerns from housing to public health matters.

Academic record

Robredo was an Edward Mason Fellow and a graduate of Masters in Public Administration at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, the DILG says on its website.

He earned a degree in Industrial Management Engineering and Mechanical Engineering from De La Salle University, and then an MBA from the University of the Philippines.

After his graduation from DLSU, it seemed Robredo was on track for the corporate life, joining San Miguel Corporation’s Magnolia division. But then he returned to Naga City in 1986, and was convinced to sign on as Program Director of the Bicol River Basin Development Program. Here he developed his taste and passion for public service, and two years later he ran for mayor.

His fellow local officials elected Robredo to lead the League of Cities of the Philippines in 1995. “He was also elected chairman of the Regional Development Council, the regional planning and coordinative body of Bicol’s six provinces and seven cities, from 1992-98. Since 1995, he also chairs the Metro Naga Development Council,” the DILG says on its website.

“A trustee of Synergeia Foundation, a national advocacy group for education governance reforms, Robredo is a member of the Liberal Party of the Philippines and a prime mover behind the Kaya Natin!, a national movement that seeks to bring genuine change and ethical leadership in the country.”   ( interaksyon.com )

PRC to conduct Nursing Licensure Exam in Riyadh

Press Release No. 119 – 2012 (16 July 2012)

The Professional Regulations Commission (PRC), an attached agency of the Department of Labor & Employment (DOLE), has approved the conduct of Special Professional Licensure Board Examination in Riyadh,   for Filipino nurses on October 25-­‐27,  2012This is in support of:

•   Bringing the PRC programs and services closer to the Filipino professionals abroad.

•   Supporting the professional development and employment competitiveness of our underboard nursing graduates working overseas.

Ambassador Ezzedin Tago explained that with the board exam for nurses, most of the Filipino   professionals   in   Saudi   Arabia   would   have   a   chance   to   upgrade   their qualifications without going back to the Philippines.  In the past, licensure examinations have been successfully conducted here for engineers, architects and accountants.

The  Filipino  applicants  can  submit  their  accomplished  application  forms  together  with the requirements to the lead person to be designated by your hospital who will then forward these documents for evaluation to the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO), Philippine Embassy.  The cut-­‐off date for the submission of the completed requirements is July 31, 2012.

Interested  applicants  are  advised  to  download  application  forms  for  the examination from the PRC Website, www.prc.gov.ph.

For further queries, you may contact the following officers of the Filipino Nurses Association in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia (FILNASA):

a.    Alina Articulo ‐  0533466462   b.  Edna Torrecampo ­‐ 0508158134  
c.  Lisa Serrano –   0508151194   d.  Liza Medina ­‐   0567461318  

Beware of fake recruitment e-mails

Beware of fake recruitment e-mails

You are selected!

The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration advises jobseekers to think twice before replying to e-mails with the said subject especially those coming from “international companies” they have never heard of before.

POEA Chief Cacdac

Administrator Hans Leo Cacdac said an e-mail congratulating an applicant for being selected for a specific job he or she did not apply for reeks of a recruitment scam.

“When you post your resume to a job search site, you are opening your personal data to potential employers, and even scammers, so be careful,” Cacdac added.

The administrator said these e-mails promise employment in hospitals and caregiving establishments in Canada and the U.S.A. at almost no cost to the applicant but they have to pay for medical tests and interview coaching in the philippines.

Cacdac cited the case of a certain Fraser Health which recruits nurses and caregivers for supposed employment in Canada.

Upon verification, the real Fraser Health in Canada denied the e-mail came from them. The fake company uses free e-mail accounts at hushmail.com whereas the true Fraser Health uses their domain name fraserhealth.ca.

Cacdac said the come-ons offered by the fake company could be hard to refuse for some Filipino workers looking for overseas jobs. The e-mail said applicants would not be charged any placement or processing fee, and the cost of air fare And work visa would be paid by the employer. But the catch is they have to pay Php3,750.00 for “Canadian Embassy Interview Coaching” and medical tests costing up to Php5,000.00.

“Because the company is not real, the victims are unnecessarily spending hardearned money in pursuit of non-existent jobs,” Cacdac said.

Cacdac urges job applicants who received such recruitment e-mails to forward the same to info@poea.gov.ph for verification and proper action by the POEA and police authorities. ### (March 9, 2012)