On DFA’s response to Migrante International’s call for the immediate repatriation of 11 stranded seafarers of Ocean Star 86

Trying to save its face, the Department of Foreign Affairs published today its response to an earlier statement by Migrante International castigating Duterte’s officials for their inaction on the plight of 11 seafarers stranded for more than a year inside the ship Ocean Star 86. Just like President Duterte, DFA officials are pathological liars who have mastered the art of deceit. 

If they in DFA have really been making arrangements for their repatriation, why is it that they still have not provided any information to the seafarers and their families? The ship has been docked in Dongshan’s port for more than three days and yet the crews have not heard any update on their repatriation. 

Stranded crews of Ocean Star 86

PHOTO: ABS-CBN News — Teleradyo

From DFA’s own statement, it is plainly obvious that its officials are only good at making “regular representations” to their bureaucratic counterparts in China and the ship owners wearing ties and suits while continuing to leave our wretched kababayans in limbo. If we are to believe DFA, these “regular representations” are supposed to ensure that seafarers will “be paid their salaries and other allowances” but the crews of Star Mariner can attest that they still have not received their unpaid wages and benefits from their ship’s owner since their repatriation in July. 

Ocean Star crews waited for three months before they received relief from the consulate. From July to September, Ocean Star crews have only received food packages three times and every set provided was only good for one week. DFA now wants to play the hero for the rare times it handed food relief. The seafarers requested for alcohol-based disinfectants and face masks but none of these items were included in the packages. 

On Locsin’s tweet rejecting pardon for convicted Filipino ‘drug dealers’ in the Middle East

Locsin’s job is to find out first if these Filipinos were victims of drug traffickers. As for his threat to let the law abroad destroy these incarcerated Filipinos who sought to destroy the people whom Locsin claims as his own, we can never put our faith in Locsin’s words when he allowed convicted killer US Marine Joseph Scott Pemberton to leave without a hitch after being granted absolute pardon by President Duterte, another self-confessed murderer.