Two men and two women are facing illegal recruitment charges before the Department of Justice (DOJ) for allegedly luring four Filipinos to work in Afghanistan despite a Philippine government deployment ban to the war-ravaged country.
Senior Superintendent Gilbert Sosa, operations chief of the Task Force Against Illegal Recruitment (Tfair), said in a radio interview Saturday that illegal recruitment complaints were filed against Domingo Cruz, Rolly Cruz, Winnie Cruz and Maria Lourdes Cabigting for collecting placement fees from four Filipinos and failing to deploy them in Afghanistan.
Sosa said the suspects lured the four aspiring overseas Filipino workers, one of whom he identified as Juan Soliman Pelayo Jr., to high-paying jobs in Afghanistan, only to find out that there were no jobs waiting for them there.
He added that the alleged illegal recruiters escorted the victims to the destination country, but abandoned them in Afghanistan after making them wait for employment for months.
The victims were able to return to the Philippines last July, Sosa said. They filed the complaint against the four alleged illegal recruiters last Tuesday.
Vice President and Tfair chairperson Noli de Castro reminded aspiring OFWs of the total ban on the deployment of Filipino workers in Afghanistan that took effect in 2007.
“Bawal pa rin ho dito. Ban pa rin po ang ating pamahalaan sa pagpapadala ng mga OFW dito po sa Afghanistan (OFWs are still not allowed there. Our government is still not allowed to send OFWs to Afghanistan," he said in his radio show Saturday.
De Castro also reminded the task force he heads to be more vigilant of aspiring OFWs trying to go to Afghanistan in airports.
“Ang utos ko po sa ating task force, sa airport, ‘yung mga patungong Afghanistan ay harangin kaagad dahil wala naman silang business na pumunta sa Afghanistan," he said.
Despite the total deployment ban of OFWs in Afghanistan, many Filipino workers still manage to get employed in military bases there, where US troops and allies are fighting local militants.
Last July, 10 Filipinos were killed in a helicopter crash in Afghanistan amidst the government prohibition of OFWs in the said country. - Andreo Calonzo, GMANews.TV