Bello blasts HK plan to stop hiring Filipinos

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Rep. Walden Bello of Akbayan party-list on Friday blasted Hong Kong politicians for their proposal to ban Filipino workers, accusing them of being racists.

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Bello, chairman of the House Committee on Overseas Workers Affairs, criticized Hong Kong lawmakers for their plan to stop hiring Filipino household service workers because President Benigno Aquino 3rd has refused to apologize for the 2010 Manila hostage taking incident which killed at least eight tourists from Hong Kong.

“This proposal smacks of racism. Instead of resorting to legal and diplomatic means to address their grievances, some Hong Kong politicians choose to target hapless Filipinos for vendetta,” Bello said.

The proposed ban will be in three stages—halting the issuance of new visas for domestic workers, stopping the renewal of their existing contracts and blocking all Philippine nationals from going to Hong Kong.

There are at least 140,000 Filipino workers in Hong Kong, majority of whom are household service workers.

“Their perceived injustice with the Philippine government’s response to the Luneta incident should not be met with yet another form of injustice against the workers that have served them well despite the difficulties and harsh working conditions many of them are often confronted with,” Bello added.

Llanesca T. Panti

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