The Department of Labor and Employment (DoLE) on Friday started facilitating the return of dead overseas Filipino workers (OFW) in Saudi Arabia, the agency said in a statement on Friday.
The first batch included 32 Filipinos from Damman and 17 from Riyadh who arrived at 10:30 am. Twenty of them died of the coronavirus, the agency said.
“We have brought back the first 49 remains of our deceased OFWs from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia,” Labor Secretary Silvestre H. Bello III said in the statement.
The next repatriation will bring back the remains of Filipinos in Jeddah, he said.
Meanwhile, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said it had been working with governments across the Americas, Asia and the Pacific and Europe through its foreign posts for the development of a COVID-19 vaccine.
In a statement, the agency said it had endorsed information on vaccine developments and potential international partners to the Department of Science and Technology.
The Philippine Council for Health Research and Development this week said the Philippines would join solidarity trials for the vaccine led by the World Health Organization. — Charmaine A. Tadalan