The Philippine Embassy called on the Filipino community in Kuwait to observe common laws and traditions in the Gulf State and to be mindful of the cultural and religious sensitivities of Kuwaitis.
The timely reminder comes weeks before Muslims observe its Holy Month of Ramadan. Also, the call to Filipinos comes in line with the Kuwait government’s efforts to keep people inside their houses to curb the spread of the coronavirus in the country.
Embassy Warns OFWs in Kuwait Against Posting Unacceptable Videos on Tiktok and Social Media
The Philippine Embassy issued the advisory after a dance video on Tiktok, which shows seven Filipina amnesty grantees who were dancing at a public school that was converted to a temporary shelter for Kuwait’s amnesty program, went viral.
The Embassy has also reported that it has received one case of a Filipina domestic worker who was physically reprimanded by her employer for posting her dance video on Tiktok to the tune of the Brandon Beal song “Twerk It Like Miley.”
Earlier this year, the Philippine government had diplomatic talks with the Kuwait government to allow Filipino domestic workers to keep their mobile phones with them to allow our kababayan to connect with their loved ones in the Philippines, and not to make unacceptable social media posts for the world to see.
The above-cited incidents should serve as a fair warning to all Filipinos to act per the laws and culture of the Kuwaiti people.
Despite the circumstances through which Filipinos were put in the past, Filipinos and Kuwaitis have long worked together and have built a mutually beneficial relationship that has stood the test of time.
OFWs are aware of the Kuwaitis’ religious and cultural sensitivities as these have been discussed with them during their pre- and post-arrival orientation seminars.
At the beginning of April, undocumented Filipinos in Kuwait were granted amnesty by the government and were accommodated for repatriation back to the Philippines.
The viral video, unfortunately, has caught the attention of the Kuwait government and may cause unwanted strain once again between the Kuwaiti and Philippine governments, just a few months after the latter has negotiated thoroughly for Filipinos to keep their mobile phones to be able to regularly communicate with their families back home whenever they want to.
However, this should not be a leeway for OFWs most especially to disrespect customs and traditions strictly observed by the people in their host country.
Following the announcement by the Embassy, Filipinos staying in the Gulf State quickly expressed their opinions regarding the matter, and acknowledged the Embassy’s advisory as important and must be observed by all, because many of them wish to continue to keep their work in the country and would like to continue the benefits of their employment, as well as the provisions of the reinforced memorandum of understanding enforced by the government of Kuwait.
Despite the enforced curfew in Kuwait at the moment, Filipinos should not use this as an excuse to act inappropriately especially through the use of videos on social media. Kuwait is an Islamic country that holds high regard for its tradition, religion, and values.