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BI chief laments that 3rd country recruiment remains prevalent

Norman Tansingco

“OFWs should protect themselves from exploitation by ensuring proper documentation when they work abroad.”

Thus said Bureau of Immigration (BI) Commissioner Norman Tansingco, as he lamented that 3rd country recruitment for overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) is still prevalent.

The BI chief explained that 3rd country recruitment means legitimate OFWs are recruited to be transported to another country, normally after their visas expire and that the recruitment would mean that the OFW would not return to the Philippines upon expiry of his contract and would instead directly transfer to a 3rd country.

Tansingco shared the dangers to OFWs of 3rd country recruitment, saying that the Philippine government would not have records of them being transferred to a different country.

He cited the case of five deported passengers from Moscow, Russia who arrived last September 1 on board an Oman Air flight.

The deportees, composed of four women and one male all in their 30s and 40s, shared the difficulties they encountered in Russia.

The male deportee left as a tourist to visit his OFW wife in Russia but overstayed in the country due to the pandemic while the four others left as OFWs with valid overseas employment certificates.

Three of the female victims were OFWs in Hong Kong and were recruited to transfer to Russia upon expiry of their contracts while the other female victim worked as a nanny in Russia, but remained despite the expiry of her contract.

“While third party recruitment is beyond the scope of the BI, we deem it necessary to share to the public stories we encounter at the airport, as we are the first to hear about this back in the Philippines,” Tansingco sighed.

Itchie G. Cabayan
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