MANILA, Philippines – Philippine Human rights commissioner Gwendolyn Pimentel-Gana, who serves as the CHR’s focal person on Migrant Workers’ Rights, condemned the rape of a Filipino domestic worker in Kuwait at the hands of one of its airport security personnel last week.
The incident was reported in Kuwait news and became the subject of a newspaper column in the Business Mirror written by labor advocate Susan Ople, entitled, “Raped at the airport”.
“We condemn this act of sexual violence allegedly committed by no less than a member of the Kuwait airport personnel. We seek justice in her behalf, and urge the Department of Foreign Affairs and the Department of Labor and Employment to ensure that our aggrieved OFW’s rights are protected and upheld,” the commissioner said.
She stressed that the identity of the OFW must be kept private as well as her personal circumstances. “She is the victim, and thus, deserves her privacy. The opposite is true of the rapist. He deserves to be unmasked, arrested, and undergo court proceedings in Kuwait.”
Commissioner Pimentel-Gana said that her office would be reaching out to the Department of Foreign Affairs, the Department of Labor and Employment as well as to the Overseas Workers’ Welfare Administration on the said case.
She lamented that the rape incident happened despite an existing bilateral labor agreement between the Philippines and Kuwait that should have led to the increased protection of Filipino domestic workers in the said country.
“Definitely, my office at the CHR will closely monitor the case. We will coordinate closely with the DFA and DoLE to ensure that the rights of the victim are protected,” she said. [BicolToday.com]