A female Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW) who was wrongfully detained at the Qatar Deportation Center has been released, Vice President Jejomar C. Binay said today.
The OFW, whose name has been withheld by embassy officials in Qatar, was detained last September 04, 2011 when a glitch in the police database showed that the OFW still had a pending absconding case filed against her by a former employer.
The OFW managed to send word of her situation through text to Vice President Binay who instructed the Philippine Embassy to assist the detained worker. Embassy officials located the employer, who then informed Qatari immigration officials that the OFW has been cleared of the absconding case and cleared to work for another employer.
The OFW was released after the celebration of the Eid El Fitr holidays.
Binay had met the OFW in Qatar last March during his visit to the country, when the worker sought the Vice President’s help in pursuing the sexual harassment and verbal abuse cases against the former employer. The OFW eventually won the case.
“Maraming maraming salamat po sa tulong niyo at sa pagtutok sa sitwasyon ko habang ako ay nakakulong. My deepest thanks to VP Binay at binigyang pansin niya ang OFW na tulad ko na nakulong ng walang kasalanan,” she said in a text message to Binay. “Isa na namang tagumpay ang mapawalang sala ako sa kasong isinampa sa akin ng ospital. Maraming salamat po at pagpalain kayo ng Poong Maykapal,”she added.
Meanwhile, the National Human Rights Committee of Qatar requested the Ministry of Interior to provide the OFW with a No Objection Certificate (NOC) so that she could find another job while waiting for the labor court to decide on a separate claim for back wages. The Philippine Embassy also sent a letter of request to the OFW’s former employer to issue an NOC for humanitarian reasons.
Her absconding case was also deleted from Qatar’s Ministry of Interior database.