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PHILIPPINES TO REPATRIATE SEX-SCANDAL ACCUSED

MANILA, Philippines -  Findings of a special team sent by the government in June to look into allegations of inappropriate sexual behavior and other abuses involving diplomatic and labour personnel posted in the Middle East were released late on Tuesday.
According to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), at least 13 labour officials and diplomatic personnel have been implicated in alleged misconduct committed at various Philippine consular posts abroad.
Two of the officials are personnel of the DFA while the rest are from the Department of Labour and Employment.
The accused personnel include those involved in the “sex for flights” scandal.
DFA spokesperson Raul Hernandez said the officials in question are now awaiting repatriation following the conclusion of the fact-finding mission by DFA and Department of Labour and Employment officials into the matter.
  • In early June, Representative Walden Bello — following a visit to Philippine diplomatic and labour posts in the Middle East — said that certain personnel in embassy and overseas labour offices had been engaged in inappropriate behaviour, victimising Filipina women.
  • Accounts by some of the women even alleged that personnel under the Philippine Overseas Labour Offices in a certain Middle East country had been “pimping” Filipina women.
  • Hernandez clarified however, that at this point the allegations were yet to be proven and that not all the allegations against the DFA and Labour personnel are of sexual nature.
  • “There was no formal hearing because there was no formal complaint. We receive a formal complaint and then based on that formal complaint, there will be fact-finding to establish probable cause. If there is probable cause, the official will be charged,” Hernandez was quoted as saying in reports.
  • Labour Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz sent the investigation team on June 28 to verify Bello’s allegations.
“The fact-finding team directed to gather information and pertinent documents from overseas Filipino workers, Filipino community leaders, and Philippine Embassy officials on the allegations about the ‘sex-for-flight’ issue, and to validate such information, arrived yesterday afternoon from Jordan,” Baldoz said.
“The team is composed of female lawyers of the DOLE and DFA. During their information-gathering and fact-finding mission, the team interviewed several OFWs and Filipino community leaders, including those who may have information and knowledge about the allegations.”

Source: Agency
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