'Stupidity at the highest level!' Drilon seeking recall of Taiwan labor attaché over OFW deportation for anti-Duterte remarks

Senate minority leader Franklin Drilon is urging  DOLE Secretary Silvestre Bello III to recall Labor attache Fidel Macauyag in Taiwan  over the controversial move asking the Taiwanese authorities to deport a Filipina worker for criticizing President Rodrigo Duterte.

Drilon said, the labor attaché has displayed incompetency by being “unfit, inefficient, and totally unqualified” to promote and protect the welfare of thousands of OFWs in Taiwan.

“Mr. Macauyag’s irresponsible act toward a helpless overseas Filipino worker is clearly an abandonment of his sworn duties to protect the welfare of OFWs,” Drilon said in a statement.

"A mere labor attaché requesting a sovereign country to deport a foreign worker over a social media post is stupidity at the highest level,” Drilon said pertaining to attaché Fidel Macauyag. 

The senate minority leader said he would be filing a resolution in the Senate and to investigation into the case. 

He would also look into the issue between the labor attache and the Filipina caregiver, Elanel Egot Ordidor, who gave rude remarks against President Rodrigo Duterte.

Macauyag insisted that Ordidor “intended to cause hatred” while our country is struggling to fight the pandemic COVID-19, and its intention to “discredit and malign the President and destabilize the government.”

And because of this, the labor attaché in Taiwan is seeking deportation proceedings against the caregiver for her unflattering observations of President Duterte.

However, Taiwan has rejected the move of the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO), saying the rights and interests of their citizens, as well as foreign workers, are protected under its local laws.

Migrante International, an OFW welfare group condenmed POLO’s actions against Ordidor, calling it “harassment” and a “violation of her democratic right to freedom of expression.”

Drilon, a former labor secretary himself, said Macauyag clearly and undeniably failed to fulfill his core responsibility by prosecuting a Filipina worker instead of protecting her.

“When a protector becomes the persecutor, you can’t help but ask: Is this the new normal?” Drilon explained.

He said the labor attaché and all those behind the move to deport the Filipino worker should face the consequences of their actions.

"I am saddened by what is happening with the officials tasked to protect our people. How (could) they have gone astray this far?" Drilon said

“His mandate is to promote the welfare of our OFWs. He has shown the highest level of ignorance. Worse, his action embarrassed the Philippine government,” he added.

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