In an effort to help curb illegal recruitment activities by erring recruitment agents in the Philippines, the Middle-East based Filipino migrants group, Migrante-Middle East (M-ME) Tuesday seeks the suspension of a recruitment agency in Manila for what it claimed is engage in illegal recruitment activities.
In his letter to Mr. Carlos Cao, administrator of the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA), copy furnished Vice President and newly designated anti-illegal recruitment czar Jejomar Binay, Migrante-Middle East regional coordinator John Leonard Monterona cited the case of the fifty-two (52) OFWs who have stopped working on Saturday over claims of underpayment of their salaries and illegal deductions by their employer, the Riyadh-based Al-Zahran company.
The OFWs were deployed by Al-Ahram International Group Services Inc. which last known address is R1,2,102,103&302 JALANDONI BLG.1444 MABINI ERMITA, MANILA
Tel No/s : 5365908/ 5244712. As per POEA records, its Official Representative is a certain Marie Lynette Syjuco.
"Upon further investigation, it revealed that the complaining OFWs were asked to sign a blank contract. As they are about to depart, the OFWs claimed that they were forced to sign it without knowing that this will be used against them as their supposed US$300 salary were not followed and other terms and conditions as stated on the original contract approved by the POEA," Monterona said on his letter to Cao.
Monterona added that the agency had done an act deemed illegal (illegal recruitment) that falls under Sec.6, paragraph (b) of Republic Act No.10022 or the Amended Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipinos Act which states "To furnish or publish any false notice or information or document in relation to recruitment or employment."
Monterona also said that his group is receiving numerous complaints from fellow OFWs who claimed that their recruitment agencies in the Philippines are doing the same –forcing the OFWs to sign another blank contract upon their departure or on the day of their departure, only to find out later that employer/company would used the terms and conditions of the bogus contract contrary to the original contract facilitated by the recruitment agency and was approved by the POEA.
"Substitution of contract is rampant among recruitment agencies and is being used to exploit our OFWs. This must be investigated, then file an appropriate case against erring recruitment agents, and let us put an end to this vicious practice, Monterona added.
Monterona calls on the attention of POEA's Cao and Vice President Jejomar Binay to put an end to these illegal activities of erring and unscrupulous recruitment agencies victimizing OFWs and prospective overseas workers.