Bishops score paltry financial assistance to OFWs

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THE Catholic Church on Friday criticized the national government for its failure to provide sufficient financial assistance to thousands of overseas Filipino workers who were repatriated from war-torn Libya and other strife-torn countries in the Middle East .

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Fr. Celso Laracass, a Filipino priest based in Libya and the parish priest of St. Francis Catholic Church, described as “measly” the P10,000 financial assistance the government is giving to returning OFWs.

He pointed out that the OFWs especially those from Libya earn as much as 1, 000 Libyan dinar or P80,000 monthly, which explains why some of them risk their lives and opting to stay in the troubled country instead of being repatriated.

“Some OFWs, especially those with large families, complain that amount is still not enough,” Laracass said, adding that the P10, 000 when converted is only 200 Libyan dinar.

Bishop Broderick Pabillo, auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of Manila and chair of the Episcopal Commission on Social Action, Justice and Peace of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) supports the sentiment of Laracass.

Labor Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz earlier said that the P10,000 financial assistance is only a one-time grant to each qualified repatriate.

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