PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti – Thirty Filipino nationals — nine minors and 21 adults — were recently repatriated to the Philippines, the Philippine Embassy in Washington, D.C. has announced.
According to a statement, the Filipino community in Haiti petitioned the Embassy to have them repatriated due to the “unstable economic and security situation in the country caused by continuous civil unrest, crime, and kidnapping.” The repatriates were flown to the Philippines through the Philippine Airlines and Asiana Airlines and were scheduled to arrive January 16.
In a separate statement, Philippine Ambassador to the United States Jose Manuel G. Romualdez said that ensuring the safety and well-being of overseas Filipinos remains a top priority of the Philippine Government. “The Philippine Embassy, along with the Philippine Consulates General and Honorary Philippine Consulates in the United States and in the Caribbean, are always here to listen and provide assistance to our kababayans as the need arises,” he added.
One of the repatriates, overseas Filipino worker Camilo Duran, thanked President Duterte and all government officials who extended financial assistance to their return trip. He also thanked the US Embassy in Port Au Prince for facilitating their transit visa to New York.
“At sa Haiti at mga Haitians na ilang taon ding nagbigay sa amin ng pagkakataong makapagrabaho at kumita at naging aming tirahan,” Duran continued. (And to Haiti and its people for giving us the opportunity to work and live in their country for many years.)
He said he would pray for Haiti to overcome the challenges the country has at the moment.
Renato Pedro O. Villa, Deputy Chief of Mission and Ryan Dasal, Assistance-to-Nationals, of the Philippine Embassy in Washington, DC were in Haiti for four days to assist in their repatriation.