SYDNEY, Australia – Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW) who nurses the 103-year old, oldest living Holocaust survivor in Australia successfully returned to the Philippines after resolving problems with her visa.
Filipina Elenita ‘Lenie’ Fernandez was able to go home to the Philippines via special visa granted by the Australian Government so she can celebrate the 18th birthday of her daughter.
Last April 14, Fernandez rushed to the Department of Immigration Office and was later on issued a special visa. Days after receiving the visa, she flew back to Manila last April 17 and was happily reunited with her children Manlyn Mae and Manuel Cesar.
The Immigration Minister spokesperson Peter Dutton confirmed that that special visa was indeed given to the Filipina but they refused to provide further comments.
Fernandez arrived in Australia last 2007 to care for Helen Roberts. Helen died last 2008 and her dying wish is to let Fernandez take care of her husband Richard Roberts. He was able to endure Buchenwald and Dachau concentration camps before stepping back to his hometown in 1938.
Fernandez was offered two options; to go back to the Philippines but will not be able to re-enter Australia again or go stay in Australia, apply for a new visa and never visit the Philippines again.
After revealing to the public her visa issue, online petition was made garnering a total of 18,000 signatures and her case was even featured through media.
Luckily, she was granted permission to visit the Philippines for two weeks and she will be returning in Australia by May this year.
Temporary caregivers were assigned to take care of Roberts while Fernandez is out of the country.