Bello backs Duterte’s ‘careful’ stance on deporting illegal Chinese workers
MANILA, Philippines – Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III is supporting President Rodrigo Duterte’s recent warning against hasty approach in dealing with illegal Chinese workers in the country.
“He’s conscious of the fact na we also have a lot of countrymen who are in China illegally, so para hindi naman sila… para they will be treated well,” Bello told INQUIRER.net in an interview on the sidelines of an event in Pasay City on Tuesday.
“Para even if they are repatriated, they should be treated well with courtesy and respect. So ganun din ang gusto niyang (Duterte) mangyari, we will deport them (Chinese) in accordance of our laws but we should be also be respectful in the implementation of deportation,” he added.
Bello made the remark after Duterte commented on the Senate’s inquiry into the influx of illegal Chinese workers in the country.
The President said that while he believed illegal Chinese workers here should be deported, he stressed the government should be careful in doing so because there are several Filipinos getting lenient treatment abroad.
Bello also insisted that Duterte’s remark has nothing to do with his close ties with China.
“Wala naman, kasi marami tayong illegal, siguro kung sabihin mong halos walong daang libo, meron dun eh. Kaya baka mamaya kapag inano natin, if we become very drastic in our actions baka they might also treat our countrymen like that as well,” Bello noted.
During the Senate hearing, Department of Labor and Employment officials said Chinese nationals enter the country using tourist visas before getting short-term permits to work for online gaming firms.
The Senate labor committee, chaired by Senator Joel Villanueva, has also learned that more than 119,000 tourists, most of them Chinese, were able to skirt Philippine labor regulations. /kga
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