30 September 2009
OFW group to OWWA:
Let ex-OFWs avail special calamity loan in recognition of their valuable contribution
The Middle-East based alliance of overseas Filipino workers’ organizations today said the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) should consider ex-OFWs to avail OWWA’s special calamity loan in recognition of their valuable contribution in the economy that has been remittance-dependent for the past few years.
“The government, through its supposed premier welfare agency –the OWWA, must consider Ex-OFWs to avail the Php.10,000 special calamity loan especially those who have been devastated by typhoon “Ondoy” in recognition of their valuable contribution to the country,” said John Leonard Monterona, Migrante-Middle East regional coordinator.
Monterona said in fact they are the ones that need help and assistance as most of them have no stable jobs at all and have only meager income after their retirement as migrant workers.
“Many ex-OFWs are on their retirement age, and if they were victims and were devastated by the typhoon, then it is but reasonable that they too should avail OWWA’s special calamity loan,” Monterona added.
Monterona explained that if special calamity loan will be sourced out from the OWWA trust fund, a compulsory collection of US$25 per departing OFWs, then ex-OFWs have all the rights to avail the special calamity loan where ex-OFWs previously paid membership fee and became OWWA members for many years. “These should be considered by OWWA allowing ex-OFWs to avail OWWA’s special calamity fund,” the OFW leader added.
Monterona express apprehension that the special calamity loan which source will come from the 12-B OWWA trust fund may not go to real beneficiaries.
“On previous similar programs, OWWA failed to secure the funds,” he added.
“Such is the case of the P260-M bogus claims exposed by then OWWA Administrator Virgilio Angelo himself only to justify OWWA Medicare fund transfer to Philippine Health Insurance Corporation or Philhealth,” Monterona claimed.
“We demand from OWWA full transparency and accountability on the disbursement of the funds to be used for the special calamity loan to ensure that the OFWs money held in trust to OWWA will go to rightful beneficiaries,” Monterona added.
Monterona is also urging the Commission on Audit (COA) to check and monitor the fund disbursement for OWWA’s special calamity loan to ensure that the OFWs’ money will not be misused. # # #
John Leonard Monterona
Migrante Middle East regional coordinator
Migrante Sectoral Party Vice Chairperson
Mobile No.: 00966 564 97 8012