2 ships on mercy mission carrying OFWs arriving in Negros Occidental
BACOLOD CITY—Two ships on mercy voyages carrying stranded overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) are set to arrive in this city this week.
Rayfrando Diaz, Negros Occidental provincial administrator, said the first ship, a vessel owned by the shipping line 2Go, is carrying 88 OFWs returning to the province from Manila. It was expected to arrive on May 19.
A second ship is carrying more OFWs and was expected to arrive on May 20 but authorities could not say how many passengers it has.
The returning OFWs would be brought first to the provincial healing facility in the town of EB Magalona for coronavirus testing.
OFWs who would test positive would be kept at the healing facility while the rest would be brought to a Bacolod hotel for quarantine.
Diaz said the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration would pay for the OFWs’ hotel rooms while the provincial government would provide their food.
The healing facility currently has 19 occupants on quarantine—three OFWs who tested positive for coronavirus and 16 persons under monitoring.
Diaz said 18 of 37 persons, who went on quarantine at the Mambukal Resort in Murcia town, would be released on May 19.
At least 300 of some 5,000 sugarcane industry workers also returned home to Antique after the province’s governor, Rhodora Cadiao, issued a certificate accepting the workers back.
The workers took a roll-on, roll-off vessel to the town of Dumangas, Iloilo province, where they would be picked up by vehicles sent by the provincial government of Antique.
Cadiao has issued a certificate accepting the return of 1,900 workers, including the 300 sugar industry workers who returned home to Antique on Monday.
At least 5,000 seasonal workers in the sugar industry in Negros Occidental are from Antique but only 1,900 are listed by employers, according to Diaz.
Edited by TSB
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