15 September 2010
After getting substantial information from fellow OFWs who have direct knowledge on the death of OFW domestic helper brought in a Saudi hospital on September 8, an alliance of Filipino migrant rights group today said there is foul play leading to the recent reported death of OFW victim in Saudi Arabia.
John Leonard Monterona, Migrante-Middle East regional coordinator, said Migrante welfare officers’ initial investigation based on the information provided by OFWs working in King Fahad hospital where the OFW victim is rushed and died later reveals that it is too obvious that the OFW victim died due to several stab wounds on her body.
Monterona said the OFW victim is only about 22 years old. Initial information reveals that she is from North Cotabato and was deployed in Saudi Arabia on 31st May 2010 to work as a domestic helper.
Monterona said they are not buying the report submitted by the Philippine Embassy saying that acid ingestion is the cause of her death.
“Acid ingestion may complicate her condition, but knowing now that there are several stab wounds on her body, which we believe are fatal enough to end the OFW victim’s life; thus we are not discounting that she died due to several stab wounds,” Monterona added.
Monterona said based on the information gathered from OFWs’ account with direct knowledge about this case, it reveals that the OFW victim has been brought to the hospital alive but after several hours has been pronounced dead.
“We are worried what will happen on this case because the investigation has not yet started and since the primary culprit is a Saudi national, we are not expecting to get full cooperation from the local police handling this case; thus the Philippine Embassy is urged to pro-actively conduct their own thorough and speedy investigation,” Monterona added.
Monterona said forming a top-level investigating body by the RP post concerned and the DFA including hiring the services of Shariah experts and lawyers so that a thorough and independent investigation will be conducted as soon as possible in coordination with the local authorities is being demanded by Migrante and various OFWs organizations and the Filipino community in the Eastern region.
“The result of this investigation must be the basis of filling a case against the suspect,” Monterona averred.
Monterona said Migrante chapters in the Saudi Arabia will keep an eye to this case and will follow ‘til a criminal case has been filed against the suspect and justice will be served to the OFW victims and her family.
“With the worsening conditions of OFWs in the Middle East and as far as their protection and rights is concerned, it is now incumbent upon President Aquino to personally look into this matter and thereby re-issue his instruction to all concerned government agencies to swiftly act now and do something about OFWs well being, their protection and welfare abroad,” Monterona ended. (Bulatlat.com)
John Leonard Monterona
Migrante-Middle east regional coordinator