By Argyll Cyrus Geducos
Malacañang is outraged by reports that an overseas Filipino worker (OFW) was raped and assaulted by a Kuwaiti police officer.
Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo made the statement following reports that a Filipina was kidnapped, raped and assaulted by 22-year-old police officer Fayed Naser Hamad Alajmy on June 4.
In his Thursday press briefing, Panelo said that while he is unsure if President Duterte is already aware of the situation, the Palace is outraged by the crime.
“We’re certainly outraged by that. And [Labor] Secretary [Silvestre] Bello is responding to that incident” he said.
According to Embassy Chargé d’Affaires Mohd Noordin Lomondot, Alajmy allegedly kidnapped the Filipina worker after he assisted her to register via finger-scanning at the airport upon her arrival in the gulf state on June 4.
Kuwaiti authorities have issued an arrest warrant against the suspect. The Filipina’s employer is also cooperating with authorities.
Philippine Embassy officials in Kuwait are also closely coordinating with local officials for the Alajmy’s arrest.
This was the second reported case in two months that an OFW was harmed in Kuwait even after a memorandum of agreement (MOA) for the protection of migrant workers was signed between the countries last year.
Only last month, Filipino household service worker Constancia Lago Dayag died after being reportedly physically and sexually assaulted. This prompted Malacañang to consider reviewing the said MOA.
In February last year, Duterte lashed out at the Kuwaiti government after learning about the death of domestic worker Joanna Demafelis, who was found dead inside a freezer in an abandoned apartment a year after she was reported missing.
Demafelis’ death prompted Duterte to order a total deployment ban of new OFWs to Kuwait and said that he will only lift the ban if Kuwait agrees to sign the document that aims to protect OFWs from abusive employers.
In May last year, the Philippines and Kuwait signed the Memorandum of Agreement and agreed to all of Duterte’s conditions which include overseas Filipino workers getting a day-off, be able to cook their own meal, get at least seven hours of sleep, have their own cellphones, and their passports not confiscated.
A month after, Duterte apologized to Kuwait for lashing out and said that he will take a commercial flight to the gulf state to personally thank them for signing the agreement.