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Department of Migrant Workers not yet fully constituted

/ 01:43 AM April 07, 2022
POEA building. STORY: Department of Migrant Workers not yet fully constituted

The facade of POEA building. (INQUIRER.net FILE PHOTO)

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine Overseas Employment Agency (POEA) continues to function as an independent agency despite the creation of the Department of Migrant Workers (DMW), according to Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea.

This is because the DMW has not been fully constituted, Medialdea said in a letter dated April 5, 2022, to newly appointed Migrant Workers Secretary Abdullah Mama-O.

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In the letter, Medialdea said that Malacañang could not yet “favorably” act on the Mama-O’s recommendation to recall the appointment of POEA officials until certain conditions could be met.

The DMW would have to be fully constituted by, among other things, having its own appropriation in the 2023 General Appropriations Act, its own implementing rules and regulations, and its own staffing pattern, Medialeda said.

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“Considering that the DMW has not been constituted yet, it follows that the government entities or agencies enumerated in Section 19 of RA 11641 shall continue to exist separately and perform their respective mandates until DMW is constituted,” he said.

Mama-O recommended the recall of the POEA appointments saying that the agency would have to be dissolved with its merger with other agencies to form the DMW.

Meanwhile, an interagency transition committee had already submitted to the Palace a draft of the implementing rules and regulations for the DMW.

Once in order, Malacañang will publish the IRR before they take effect and serve as a guide for a smooth transition to the full constitution and operation of the new department.

Under Republic Act No. 11641, which President Rodrigo Duterte signed on Dec. 30, 2021, the POEA will be turned into the DMW, which would then be tasked with overseeing all policies protecting the welfare of Filipino working abroad.

The new department consolidates all relevant agencies under one office to make it easier for migrant workers to get their documents and seek help from the government.

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TAGS: Department of Migrant Workers, OFWs, Palace, Philippine Overseas Employment Agency (POEA)
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