183 Filipinos stranded in Malaysia arrive in PH
MANILA, Philippines – A total of 183 Filipinos who were previously stranded in Malaysia amid the COVID-19 pandemic has arrived in the Philippines, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said.
DFA said on Wednesday that the Philippine Embassy in Kuala Lumpur organized the mass repatriation for the Filipinos, which was composed of tourists and overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) who were stranded after flights were canceled due to the pandemic.
“The Embassy remains strongly committed to assisting Filipinos in distress, especially those who were severely impacted by the spread of COVID-19,” Philippine Ambassador to Malaysia Charles Jose said in a statement.
“This includes helping our kababayans get home safely,” Jose added.
(1/2) The DFA warmly welcomes home 183 stranded OFs and OFWs from Malaysia who were brought home via chartered flight. This was the 4th DFA-organized repatriation from Southeast Asia. pic.twitter.com/VSy1EGvNpr
— DFA Philippines (@DFAPHL) April 28, 2020
DFA noted that expenses for the chartered flight was shouldered by the national government, as the stranded Filipinos have been experiencing financial difficulties due to their prolonged stay.
Face masks were also provided by the Philippine Embassy-Overseas Workers Welfare Administration team.
Several repatriates thanked the government for its effort in bringing them back home.
“Thank you for the assistance and I am included in the flight back to the Philippines,” a certain Rene Burgos said.
Filipinos returning to the country will be subjected to a mandatory health assessment by the Department of Health-Bureau of Quarantine (DOH-BOQ). Those exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 will be asked to go on a mandatory 14-day quarantine.
Last Saturday, DFA said that over 20,000 Filipinos have been repatriated since travel restrictions were placed to avoid the local transmission of COVID-19. As of now, 1,604 Filipinos abroad have contracted the latest coronavirus strain, with 189 patients dead and 419 recoveries.
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