MANILA, Philippines—Amid reports that thousands of Overseas Filipino Workers in Taiwan lost their jobs over the case of the Taiwanese fisherman killed off Batanes two months ago, Manila Economic and Cultural Office (MECO) chairman Amadeo Perez appealed to the remaining workers there to keep their cool as the government is working to resolve the dispute.
He, however, said that MECO, in particular, cannot do anything about the case of the laid off workers, saying that it is the Department of Labor and Employment which is in the position to look for jobs that can be offered to them.
“Walang magawa kasi yan ang isa sa mga sanction na inimpose sa atin ng Taiwan,” Perez said in an interview with Radyo Inquirer 990AM.
(We can’t do anything because it is among the sanctions imposed upon us.)
Earlier reports had it that about 10,000 OFWs in Taiwan were forced to return to the country after their job contracts were terminated amid the unresolved case of the Taiwanese fisherman who killed during an encounter with Philippine Coast Guard in the Balintang Channel.
In particular, Perez said the affected OFWs were not issued a re-entry visa.
Asked for his message to about 80,000 more OFWs remaining in Taiwan, Perez said: “Huminahon lang sila at gagawan ng paraan ng gobyerno ’yang problema. Hindi naman natutulog ang gobyerno. Bigyan lang natin ng sapat na pagkakataon na maresolba itong gusot sa pagitan ng Taiwan at Pilipinas.”
(Just calm down as the government is working on ways to resolve the dispute between Taiwan and the Philippines.)
For the full interview, listen to the attached audio clip from Radyo Inquirer 990AM.