DFA receives additional fund for OFW repatriation program

Migrante International slammed what it called DBM Sec. Abad’s BUTCHering of OFW funds in the 2015 national budget. According to Sol Pillas, Migrante International spokesperson, the DBM deleted the P89.6-million budget initially penned in the proposed 2015 budget for the implementation of the overseas absentee voting (OAV). File photo courtesy of Migrante International.

MANILA, Nov 12 — The Philippine government is issuing additional allotment of P50 million to the Department of Foreign Affairs for its overseas Filipino repatriation program.

Fund being released by the Department of Budget and Management to the Department of Foreign Affairs will augment DFA’s P100-million emergency fund to help in the continuing repatriation of Filipinos affected by the deteriorating security situation in Libya, Syria, Iraq, and Gaza.

The DFA had declared Crisis Alert Level 4 in the four countries, issuing a total deployment ban and implementing mandatory repatriation for Filipinos living or working there.

The recent release will augment emergency fund that the DFA received in August 2014 to help in the repatriation of Filipinos from Libya. Both releases, which were sourced from the 2013 Contingent Fund, will supplement the DFA’s Assistance-To-Nationals (ATN) Fund.

The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) and the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) will also be expediting the necessary measures and processes to provide funds amounting to P50 million and P800 million respectively to help in the repatriation.

The DFA ordered the pullout of Filipinos in the Gaza Strip in June 2014 due to threats to security in relation to the Israel-Hamas conflict. Around the same time, they made a similar call in Iraq because of the rapidly deteriorating security situation. In July 2014, the DFA called for the repatriation of Filipinos in Libya because of the worsening violence. The on-going repatriation of Filipinos in Syria first started in December 2012.


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