On January 23, 2018, the Kuwait government had announced its amnesty program for all overstaying and undocumented OFWs. This was Kuwait’s move after the Philippine government had earlier announced the suspension of deploying OFWs to the country through the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).
OFWs swamp at the Philippine Embassy to apply for the amnesty program which will allow them to go back to the Philippines without having to pay any penalty.
Among them, an overseas worker named Weesha Soriano went early to the embassy to apply for the program. According to Weesha, she was working illegally in Kuwait for 3 years already. She claimed the amnesty given to them was a ‘big’ privilege as it may let them go home legally.
Apparently, the same with the previously amnesty program given by Saudi Arabia in 2017, the Philippine government will be providing free airway tickets to undocumented OFWs in Kuwait who will avail of the program. In fact, the Philippine Embassy had already coordinated with Philippine Airlines and Kuwait Airways regarding return flights to the Philippines.
According to NoordinPendosinaLomondot, Chargé d’Affaires of the Philippine Embassy in Kuwait, the program includes OFWs with expired visa, detained OFWs because of expired visa and those who were residence violators.
Based on the list of the Ministry of Interior in Kuwait, there are almost 10,000 undocumented OFWs staying in the country. Most of them were domestic helpers who had flee from the hands of their abusive employers.
For overseas workers who would like to avail of the amnesty program in Kuwait, all they have to do is to proceed to the embassy with complete requirements such as: passport-sized photo, photocopy of civil ID and passport or any valid ID.
For clarifications and inquiries, applicants may call the embassy’s hotline, 65002612.
The embassy is appealing to all undocumented OFWs in Kuwait to grab the opportunity of applying for the amnesty program so they may go back to the Philippines.
Meanwhile, OFWs who had availed of amnesty may still work in Kuwait, provided the Philippine government will lift its deployment ban of overseas workers in the said country.