Wednesday, November 26, 2008

November 26, 2008

Cancer-stricken Pinay in Jeddah seeks help

11/26/2008 03:22 PM

JEDDAH, Saudi Arabia - A cancer-stricken Filipina domestic worker in Saudi Arabia is seeking repatriation and financial help.

Fely Borlongan, a 61-year old who had been diagnosed with lung cancer, on Monday said she has not other recourse but to appeal for help from those with “kind hearts." “Hirap na po ako dito, gusto ko na umuwi nang makasama ko ang aking mga anak.

Tanging ang mga anak ko na lang ang nagbibigay sa akin nang lakas. Kumakatok po ako sa aking mga kababayan na matulungan nyo ako makauwi (I am having a really hard time here, I want to go home and be with my children, they are the only ones who give me strength. I am appealing to my fellow Filipinos to help me come home)," she said.

A widow with five children in Bulacan, Borlongan said that she could not properly come home because she ran away from her employer in Jeddah more than a year ago.Having worked in Saudi Arabia since 1989, she found out that she had lung cancer just last August.

She had been relying on help from friends since then, but because her condition has worsened, she wants to come home and be with her children.“Hirap na hirap ho si Fely lalo na ‘pag sumusumpong ang kanyang sakit hindi sya makagulapay sa sakit na kanyang nararamdaman (Fely suffers when her disease acts up, the pain disables her)," said Borlongan’s friend Paz Bayan.

Apart from her repatriation requirements, Borlongan also has to pay the penalty for her expired Iqama or national ID, which contains her work permit, and the cancellation of the report that she ran away from her employer.

“San ako kukuha nang ganyang kalaking halaga? Wala na po akong trabaho, ang perang naikontribusyon nang aming mga kaibigan ay naubos na sa pagpapagamot ko dito (Where will I get that kind of money? I don’t have a job and the money given by my friends has been used up for my treatment)," she said.

She said she was also concerned how she will be able to provide for her three grandchildren who were left in her care by her deceased daughter.Borlongan has approached the Assistance to Nationals section of the Philippine Consulate General in Jeddah for help.

The consulate reportedly coordinated with her former employer immediately to obtain her passport.According to Elsa Masa of the Assistance to Nationals section, they are doing everything that they can in order to help Borlongan come home.

The consulate official said she has already sent a request to their office in Manila and is just waiting for a reply.“Wala naman nang problema sa kaso niya dahil nakipag-coordinate na ang kanyang amo," she said.

Masa said that they will take care of the Iqama penalty and also said that Borlongan’s former employer gave 500 Saudi Riyals or about P7,000 for the OFW’s repatriation.Nonetheless, she said additional help for Borlongan would be most welcome since she has to continue with her medical treatment. - GMANews.TV

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