Año to LGUs: Accept returning OFWs instead of whining, complaining
MANILA, Philippines — Interior Secretary Eduardo Año on Tuesday told local government units (LGUs) to accept returning Filipino migrant workers instead of “whining and complaining,” as he assured that these workers are negative for the coronavirus, which causes the coronavirus disease.
“We are assuring them (LGUs) na negative yung PCR (polymerase chain reaction) test ng OFWs (overseas Filipino workers). We provided the buses, airplanes,” Año said over dzBB when asked about their protocol for returning OFWs.
(We are assuring them that these OFWs have negative PCR test. We provided the buses, airplanes.)
“On Sunday night also, the DILG (Department of the Interior and Local Government) started emailing all the names of these 24,000 OFWs to the different LGUs. Diyan mo masusukat kung gaano kabilis mag-react yung LGUs instead of complaining and whining, you have to face the situation and then do it,” he added.
(On Sunday night also, the DILG started emailing all the names of these 24,000 OFWs to the different LGUs. This will show how quickly LGUs react instead of complaining and whining they have to face the situation and then do it.)
Asked if LGUs can impose additional health requirements, Año said local officials can allow OFWs to go under quarantine or get tested for SARS-CoV-2 again if workers have COVID-19 symptoms.
“Kinikilala pa rin natin pagdating sa LGU kung gusto pa nila iquarantine o gusto nila itest, we do not forbid them to do that.” he said.
(We are still allowing LGUs to impose quarantine or testing, we do not forbid them to do that.)
“Kung may symptoms, itetest ulit natin. Wala tayong problema dun, walang disagreement na additional protocol or safety measures na iaapply ng LGU,” Año added.
(If the OFWs have symptoms, we will have them tested. We don’t have problems with that. There is no disagreement on additional protocol or safety measures that will be applied by the LGU.)
This as President Rodrigo Duterte announced in a taped briefing on Monday night that LGUs should accept OFWs as only the national government can impose travel restrictions.
The pronouncement was made after a number of repatriated OFWs reportedly complained of enduring a longer stay in quarantine facilities beyond the required 14-day quarantine period due to the delay in their test results.
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