The fourth batch of the remains of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) who passed away in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia was flown back home on Friday, August 28.
The chartered flight of the Philippine Airlines which arrived at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) at around 9:40 a.m. on August 28, carried 72 bodies of OFWs, the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) reported.
Bodies of 72 Saudi OFWs Repatriated, 62 Deaths due to COVID-19
In a statement, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said that out of the 72 repatriated bodies, 62 succumbed to the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) while 10 died of other causes, the Philippine News Agency reported.
Bello added that the OFWs are covered by the repatriation program of the labor department through the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) and the Philippine Overseas Labor Offices (POLOs) in the Arab country.
The labor chief further noted that of the 72 remains, 40 are from Al Khobar, 17 from Jeddah, and 15 from Riyadh, which brings the total repatriated human remains of OFWs from Saudi Arabia to 264.
Bello explained, “The first three batches involving the remains of 192 migrant workers were brought home by the government on separate occasions last month.”
He added that the remains from the first three batches were received in the presence of key officials of state agencies “in recognition of their heroism and valuable contribution to the national economy.”
Bello also noted, “The same respect will be accorded to the arriving OFWs who lost their lives in the KSA in pursuit of a better future for their families and motherland.”
In the same manner, top government officials were on hand in welcoming home the fourth batch of bodies of the country’s modern-day heroes on Friday, August 28.
“We are ready for their arrival. We will continue to bring home our heroes whatever it takes,” he added.
Here is a video documentation of the arrival of the Philippine Airline chartered flight from Saudi Arabia as shared by PTV News via Facebook: