Amnesty program for OFWs in Kuwait extended

Overseas Filipino workers in Kuwait are given additional two months to prepare to return home as the Kuwaiti government extends its amnesty program.

According to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), the order for the extension of the amnesty program was signed by Kuwait Interior Minister Sheikh Khalid Al-Jarrah Al-Sabah.

Instead of its supposed deadline of February 22, the amnesty program is set to end on April 22, after the DFA formally requested extension to Kuwaiti Ambassador to Manila Mousaed Al-Thwaikh.

The request for an extension was made to allow the Philippine government to accommodate more of the 10,800 Filipinos believed to have overstayed their visas or ran away from their employers as only close to 3,000 of those qualified have applied so far.

The largest arrival of repatriated OFWs was recorded on February 21 when 580 OFWs who availed the amnesty program arrived on board Cebu Pacific and Philippine Airlines.

The Philippine Embassy in Kuwait said it has so far processed 3,801 travel documents for workers since the amnesty period began. It expects 2,000 more OFWs to be repatriated in the next few days after the Kuwaiti government decided to extend its amnesty program by two months.