US stops hiring skilled Pinoy workers for Afghanistan bases

Published by rudy Date posted on May 5, 2011

MANILA, Philippines – Filipinos are no longer being hired as highly skilled workers in US military bases in Afghanistan, local recruiters said yesterday.

Early this year, US and international contractors have stopped accepting Filipinos for contractual positions in US bases in compliance with the government’s deployment ban, they added.

Emmanuel Geslani, a recruitment and migration expert, said a syndicate in Metro Manila and Dubai has been recruiting Filipinos for non-existing jobs in Afghanistan.

Illegal recruiters approach Filipinos in Dubai whose contracts are expiring and asked to pay from $1,000 to $1,200 as application fee, he added.

Geslani said in the Philippines, the syndicate reportedly goes around Central Luzon to recruit returning workers from Iraq and offering non-existent jobs for fees ranging from P100,000 to P150,000.

Workers are brought to Dubai and housed in a villa where they would wait for the supposed jobs, and after their visas expire, they would be reported to the police, he added.

US and international contractors in 64 US bases, mainly in Kandahar and Babram Air Force bases, have not renewed the contracts of Filipino workers and replaced them with workers of other nationalities, Geslani said.

The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) has given Filipinos working in US bases in Afghanistan until December 2011 to finish their employment contracts and return home.

Filipinos in Afghanistan have been urging the government to lift the deployment ban to enable them to continue earning money.

Last year, the US Central Command ordered their contractors to repatriate all foreign workers from countries with existing deployment ban in Afghanistan.–Mayen Jaymalin (The Philippine Star)

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