Local News: Kin of 2 OFWs Seek Help from Capitol
The families of two Negrenses who passed away in the Middle East have sought the help of the Provincial Capitol in the repatriation of the remains of their kin.
Public Affairs Division head Benja Lucasan said the Office of the Governor is providing assistance to the families of Glen Ballenas of Barangay Robles and of Mary Ann Davatos of Barangay Nato, both in La Castellana town.
Ballenas, 40, had worked in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. His wife, Lourdes, although separated from him for 15 years, wants to claim his remains, Lucasan said.
Meanwhile, Davatos, 28, was among the three Filipinas who died when their building collapsed in Beirut, Lebanon last month.
Lucasan said they have referred both cases to the Department of Foreign Affairs, but still continue to follow-up developments on the repatriation process.
She said that for Davatos, they have gotten in touch with the general manager of her employment agency, Maroun El Khawand, and they were told the agency needs about a month to complete the repatriation procedures.
El Khawand has committed to help the Davatos family, Lucasan said. Davatos, who had worked in Lebanon for three years, was attending a prayer meeting of the God’s Divine Love International Ministry when the building collapsed.
The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA), however, said the family of Davatos will not be able to receive benefits from the government because she was not a documented worker.
Davatos reportedly had a tourist visa, but decided to work in Lebanon instead. She stayed there for three years and was scheduled to come home in March this year.
OWWA said they will still assist her family in bringing back her remains to the Philippines.*(DBDangcalan)