Merry Christmas from Nigeria

December 25, 2008

Dec 13th – Filipinos in Barangay Apapa held their Christmas Party at the Kalmar company housing estate, led by Kuya Manny Figueroa.

Organizing raffle prizescommittee chairperson was Oliver Terante of EKO Supreme.

It was a well-attended event highlighted by children games and a live band.

Also in attendance were a group of Filipino seafarers whose ship was unloading cargoes in Apapa wharf.

The seamen donated crates of San Miguel Beer Pilsen and San Mig Light — in cans..

The party started at 6 PM at finished at 3 AM the following day..

Dec 21st – PBSN Barangay Ikeja celebrated Christmas with a Mass presided by Filipino priest, Fr. Dory, held at the Caverton Helicopter Compound clubhouse.

Parlor games presided by Marix Tajo (IMTC) and Red Cordente (Wahum) had full participation of Pinoys, Pinays, expat guests and local staff.

Chairperson Esper Derpo, who recently returned from the Philippines after receiving from PGMA her 2008 Banaag awards, was there to led the festivities.

On the scene were other PBSN officials Mrs. Myrna Obiakor, Mrs Veronica Bernas-Snoxell, Mae Abcede.

Maligayang Pasko 2008 at Mapayapang Bagong Taon 2009 sa sambayanang Pilipino..

Mabuhay ang mga Naija Filipinos….

See you at respective barangay’s New Year’s celebration..

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Immigration eases rules on returning OFWs to Nigeria

December 18, 2008

MARK JOSEPH UBALDE, GMANews.TV
12/18/2008 | 09:09 PM

MANILA, Philippines-  Janette Alican risked a good job in Nigeria to be with her family this Christmas.

The total deployment ban imposed by the Philippine government bars
Filipinos from going to the oil-rich African nation due to the spate of kidnappings ? both in Nigeria’s soil and seas ? in 2006.

Earlier this month, Alican, who holds a resident visa in Nigeria, flew from the capital city of Abuja to Manila. Now, she fears she can’t go back to the German company in Abuja that employed her.

“I feel like I’m being imprisoned in my own country,” she tearfully said during a forum Thursday on the UN Migrant Workers’ Convention, a joint undertaking of the state Commission on Human Rights (CHR) and the civil society group Center for Migration Advocacy (CMA).

“The President left for Qatar to get jobs there. I have a job in Nigeria,why can’t I get back there?” she said.

Lawyer Edgardo Mendoza, chief Immigration Regulation Commission, assured returning migrant workers like Alican that they could re-enter Nigeria as long as they present the necessary documents.

In an interview with GMANews.TV on Thursday, Mendoza said migrants who have secured a Balik-Manggagawa (Return to Work) permit from the Philippine Overseas Employment Agency (POEA) and a resident visa could return to the African country.

Mendoza added that the POEA would issue a guideline soon on the issuance of special permits to returning workers in Nigeria.

Mendoza refused to comment whether the special permit would extend to three other countries with existing total deployment bans, namely: Iraq, Afghanistan and Lebanon.

There is also no word on the state of the workers who want to return to Jordan where a temporary suspension of deployment on domestic workers is implemented.

Karen Gomez-Dumpit, director of the CHR’s Government Linkages Office
promised to personally assist Janette by finding out if the rule is
subjective or not.

“What if you encounter an Immigration officer who is ignorant of the rule, how can you explain to him that you can leave?” Dumpit said during the forum.

If successful, Alican would leave for Nigeria on the 27th.

Recruiters have sought the lifting of deployment bans to Lebanon, Nigeria, Afghanistan and Iraq, saying the Philippines is losing out on job opportunities for Filipino workers.

Jackson Gan, vice president of the Federated Association of Manpower
Exporters, said that there are less demand for Filipinos in countries where workers are freely deployed.

The Philippine government imposed a deployment ban on Iraq, Lebanon and Afghanistan due to security threats to Filipino workers.

The deployment of domestic workers to Jordan was suspended due to the
upsurge of abuses against Filipino household service workers in the Middle Eastern country. – GMANews.TV


Nigeria OFW a recipient of the 2008 Banaag Awards

December 17, 2008

President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo handed out awards to all the recipients of the 2008 Banaag Awards in a special ceremony at Malacanang Palace last December 10, 2008.

The Banaag Award is a Presidential award given to Filipinos and foreign individuals or associations for advancing the cause of Filipino communities overseas or for supporting specific sectors or communities in the Philippines.

Among the winners is Mrs. Esperanza R. Derpo from Nigeria.

The awarding ceremony provided Mrs. Derpo an opportunity to speak to the President about the request of OFWs in Nigeria for the lifting of the total ban.

She said that the President assured her she will ‘take a look’ at the issue of the ban and might send Amb. Roy Cimatu to Nigeria to assess the security situation there.

Although, last December 13, Pres. Arroyo issued a pronouncement saying that the ban to Nigeria will still remain.

In a separate forum organized by the Center for Migrant Advocacy (CMA), the Bureau of Immigration assured the Nigeria OFWs that those who have existing contracts or those resident of Nigeria already can freely come and go, as long as they show their resident IDs.

Mrs. Derpo is hopeful that this isa positive sign that the total ban to Nigeria will soon be lifted.

Accompanying her during the awarding ceremony were Mrs Veronica Bernas-Snoxell, daughter Maricar Derpo, and her in-laws.

Photos from the 2008 Banaag Awarding ceremony:

Banaag Awarde Esperanza Derpo receiving plaque from PGMA

2008 Banaag Awards

Mrs Esperanza R. Derpo, 2008 Banaag Awardee for Nigeria

2008 Banaag Awards

2008 Banaag Awards