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KUWAIT CITY, Oct 28: The Advocates and Keepers Organization of OFWS (AKO-OFW ) Inc together with City Centre organised a community outreach event for some of the 500 distressed Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) working in one of the leading contracting companies in Kuwait who have resigned from their jobs due to non-payment of their salaries for almost one year now.
The AKO OFW, an advocacy group led by its founder Dr Chie Umandap and Kuwait Chapter President Kristian Dela Paz visited the workers in the labour camp on Friday at the Shuaiba Industrial area and distributed grocery packs and other supplies courtesy of City Centre led its Store Operations Manager Arvind Sattu, Store Manager Allan Salong and HR Manager Le Mogene Tucker.
Aside from Filipino workers, some Indian workers also received grocery packs from City Centre and AKO OFW. “We are happy to lend a helping hand to the distressed workers and we will try our best to help,” stated Sattu. Meanwhile, The Boodle House Restaurant sponsored the lunch for around 100 distressed workers. AKO OFW thanked the City Centre and The Boodle House for responding to their appeal for help. “On behalf of AKO OFW, our heartfelt gratitude to City Centre, The Boodle House and to all those individuals who helped us for two consecutive Fridays now and we will be doing more outreach events in the other camps in the coming weeks,” stated Dela Paz. The salary problem of the workers has been going on since 2016.
Of the 20,000 workers from different nationalities, around 1,000 of them are OFWs and around 500 have already resigned while some were terminated. Many of them had already transferred to another company while others resigned and went back home to the Philippines while the rest are still waiting for the company to pay their back wages and indemnity.
The distressed OFWs have already sought the help of the Philippine Embassy and Philippine Overseas Labour Office in Kuwait. The Philippine Department of Labour and Employment sent early this month an Augmentation Team led by Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) Deputy Administrator Brigido Dulay to talk to the company management and resolve the workers issues and concerns particularly the payment of their back wages and indemnity
By Michelle Fe Santiago Arab Times Staff