Philippine Foreign Secretary visits Kingdom ahead of Duterte
| Published — Monday 23 January 2017
RIYADH: Philippine Foreign Secretary Perfecto R. Yasay Jr. visited Saudi Arabia on Saturday in preparation for a visit by President Rodrigo R. Duterte.
Yasay Jr. “came to Saudi Arabia to meet the Filipino community and to listen to their concerns, issues and aspirations, which he will relay to President Duterte before he comes,” Philippine Embassy Charge d’Affaires Iric C. Arribas told Arab News on Sunday.
Yasay Jr. headed a delegation that included Assistant Secretary Hajceleen Quintana and Director Germinia Usudan, top officials at the Office of Middle East and African Affairs at the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) and Voltaire Pingol and Rene Montebon, special assistants to the foreign secretary.
Arribas said Yasay Jr. expressed his appreciation to the Filipino community for the warm welcome extended to him and his delegation.
During the meeting, Yasay Jr. reminded the community to be responsible to the host government, which welcomed them to help the Kingdom’s development.
The embassy estimated the number of Filipino workers in the Kingdom at close to a million.
Arribas said the Filipino community is looking forward to the visit of Duterte, and the embassy will ensure his visit is memorable.
Consul General Imelda Panolong joined Yasay Jr. and his delegation, and Philippine Embassy officials, in meeting with the community. Panolong was accompanied by Consul Rodney Jonas Sumague and Vice Consul Alex Estomo.