On Saturday (March 20), the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) urged overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) who are planning to come back home to postpone their trips due to the steep increase in COVID-19 cases in the country.
In recent weeks, the country has seen the highest daily numbers of new cases, following the identification of several variants of the virus in the country, and after the government allowed entry of all Filipinos from abroad. However, the country’s health system has been struggling to keep up with the increase of new cases on a daily basis.
OWWA Chief Urges OFWs to Delay Return to PH Amid Spike in COVID Cases
In line with this OWWA Chief Hans Leo Cacdac said: “My advice to our beloved OFW: kindly postpone your planned trip to our dear country, because there’s an increase in the new cases of Covid-19 and the escalation of stayers in our hotel quarantine facilities.”
Payo ko po sa mga mahal nating OFWs: ipagpaliban po muna ang biyahe pauwi sa mahal nating bayan, dahil sa taas po ng mga bagong kaso ng covid-19 at pagdami po ng mga stayers natin sa hotel quarantine facilities. Kung maari lang naman pong maipag-paliban po muna ang biyahe pauwi.
— hans leo j. cacdac (@HansLeoCacdac) March 19, 2021
Despite the call to postpone their return to the Philippines, Cacdac reassured overseas Filipinos that the agency is looking for hotels in Metro Manila’s nearby provinces to accommodate returning OFWs.
“If it’s possible, postpone your scheduled trip to the country,” he urged.
On Friday (March 19), the National Task Force against Covid-19 (NTF) issued Memorandum Circular No. 6 which allows all Filipinos abroad to enter the country amid a temporary travel ban that will be in effect from March 22 to April 21.
Then on Saturday, the health department reported another single-day record of new Covid-19 cases in the country at 7,999. This brings the total number of Covid-19 cases in the country to 656,056.