Bello leads annual OFW 'salubong'

By Ferdinand Patinio

December 29, 2018, 7:42 pm

MANILA — Government officials, headed by Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Secretary Silvestre Bello III, on Thursday welcomed returning Overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) during the annual ‘salubong’ of the country’s modern-day heroes at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) in Pasay City.

Upon arrival in Manila via Kuwait Airways Flight 417, the OFWs were welcomed with food, gift items, and Christmas baskets from the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA).

On the other hand, three lucky OFWs received cash gifts worth PHP50,000 each. They were Aurora Abelle Casano, Aisa Ismawil Husain, and Annabel Merio Melencio.

Anchored on the theme, “Kalingang Walang Patid sa OFW ay Hatid,” the OFW salubong is part of OWWA’s Pamaskong Handog, which is an annual activity to bring cheers and presents to OFWs and their families.

“Gusto kong ipaalam sa inyo na pinapunta kami rito ni Pangulong Duterte upang personal kayong salubungin at pasalamatan para sa inyong mga ginagawa sa ating bansa. Kayo po ang tunay na mga bayani ng ating bayan,” Bello told the OFWs.

Bello also encouraged the OFWs to stay in the country for good by putting up their own business or taking advantage of the local job opportunities.

Also present at the event were Undersecretary Renato Ebarle and OWWA Deputy Administrators Brigido Dulay and Arnel Ignacio.

Meanwhile, OWWA Administrator Hans Leo Cacdac urged the vacationing OFWs to avail of the OFW e-card by registering at

The Card may be used as valid government ID, serves as proof of active OWWA membership and provides easy access to welfare services, scholarships, training programs, and social benefits from OWWA.

It can be picked up at the OWWA Central Office or at the OWWA Regional Offices. (PNA)