Vice President Jejomar C. Binay welcomed the decision of Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud to grant a 3-month reprieve for foreign workers to correct their status.
“We are grateful to King Abdullah for giving our overseas workers a chance to fix the discrepancies in their working documents. This brings great relief to us all, especially to the families of the affected Filipino workers,” Binay said in a statement Sunday before leaving for Paris to represent President Benigno S. Aquino III in an exhibition featuring Philippine arts and culture at the Musée du Quai Branly..
“I call on our kababayans in Saudi to grab this opportunity to correct your status. Follow the labor laws of your host country and resolve any work violations you might have committed,” he added.
Meanwhile, the Vice President also urged the Philippine diplomatic posts in Saudi to expedite the processing of the working documents and extend all assistance they could give.
“We have around 1.5 million Filipino workers in Saudi and some 20,000 of them are said to be undocumented. Given this number, it is important for our diplomatic offices to double-time to make the most of the 3-month grace period,” Binay said.
“To those planning to work overseas, please make sure to go through the legal channels and file your proper documents to avoid any untoward incidents,” he added.
The Vice President serves as the Presidential Adviser on Overseas Filipino Workers’ concerns.
The Saudi government recently ordered the crackdown of erring employers and illegal workers who violated iqama and visa laws.
Workers without proper documents may be fined, imprisoned, deported or banned from entering the kingdom again.#