Local airlines Philipppine Airlines (PAL) and Cebu Pacific will add special flights to Kuwait to help in sending home the distressed Filipino workers in the Middle Eastern country.
The announcement was made last Saturday after President Rodrigo Duterte ordered Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Secretary Silvestre Bello III to bring home OFWs from the said country, saying that he wants all Filipino workers who want to repatriate from Kuwait on a plane in 72 hours.
The employment ban to Kuwait was impelled by the death of Joanna Daniela Demafelis, a Filipina whose body was found stored in a freezer.
DOLE has also implemented an immediate suspension of OFW deployment to Kuwait following the death of seven other Filipinos in the foreign land.
“Cebu Pacific is mounting a special charter flight from Kuwait to Manila for free. This is in response to the call for assistance by the government to repatriate Filipino workers in Kuwait,” Cebu Pacific said.
PAL has also expressed commitment in the matter, saying that it will add special flights from Kuwait to Manila “within the next few days.”
“In the service of our ‘kababayans’, we will be ensuring their safe journey back to the Philippines.. PAL is more than ready to mount extra flights to Kuwait, as needed,” PAL said in a statement.
Following Duterte’s statement, the two airlines said they are coordinating with the Department of Foreign Affairs and the Philippine Embassy in Kuwait for travel arrangements.
Both airline companies will be sending Airbus A330 aircrafts with a maximum capacity of 436 passengers for Cebu Pacific and 363 people for PAL.