Draft amendments to immigration law to resolve influx of Chinese, foreign workers here



By Rose de la Cruz



House Bill 7939 seeking to amend the 1940 immigration law of the Philippines will resolve the influx of Chinese and other foreign workers here and relieve the restive Filipino workers who stand to lose their jobs from these expats.


The House’s proposed Philippine Immigration Act is already approved by its committees on justice, appropriations, and ways and means but 1-CARE Party-list Rep. Carlos Roman L. Uybarreta said he would consult with the committee chairmen and the House leadership on possibly prioritizing HB 7939 when Congress resumes session on May 20, 2019


"HB 7939 would be the policy solution to ongoing concerns about the influx of foreign workers without proper immigration and Labor Department clearances," said Uybarreta one of the authors of the bill said.


Uybarreta said HB 7939 will go through second and third reading, but the Senate still has to consolidate the six immigration bills pending at committee.


"If the House and Senate leaders can agree on expediting the pending immigration reform bills, there is still time for both chambers to approve the bill and transmit it to President Rodrigo Duterte before the 17th Congress adjourns its session in June,"Uybarreta, member of the ways & means committee said.


Uybarreta noted that there have been many attempts dating back to 2009 during the 14th Congress to update the circa 1940 Commonwealth Act No. 613 which is the current core immigration law of the Philippines.


"Updating this Commonwealth era law is definitely long-overdue, not just because it is 79 years old, but also because the entire world has changed much since then," Uybarreta said.


"Congress must update our immigration architecture for the present and future challenges of immigration, tourism, business, cross-border professional practice, and migrant labor," Uybarreta added.


HB 7939 prescribes the whole range of categories of non-immigrants and types of visa issued for each visa category, including the G-visa for prearranged employment, the A-1 visa for business visitors, the D-1 visa for treaty traders, and the D-2 visa for treaty investors.


Nagkaisa calls Tulfo ‘bastos’


Nagkaisa Labor Coalition thinks that reaction of Special Envoy to China Ramon Tulfo of dirty finger to calls for his firing just compounds the mounting list of offenses he has committed against Filipino workers and the Filipino people.


“That was definitely unbecoming for a government official. But we were not surprised at all with the dirty finger response of Ramon Tulfo,” Nagkaisa chairman and senatorial aspirant Sonny Matula said.


“Di hamak na mas kagalang-galang ang manggagawang Pilipino. Ginoong Tulfo, hindi po namin papatulan ang kabastusan ninyo,” Matula said.


Asked by media to react to calls for his resignation over remarks that Filipino workers are lazy, Tulfo flashed a dirty finger.


“If Tulfo thinks Filipino workers are too lazy, he should return to the National Treasury the P60-million his siblings plundered so that the money can be used to help upgrade workers’ skills and work ethics,” Matula said.


Nagkaisa was referring to the P60-M in advertising contracts the Tulfo family got from the Department of Tourism, then headed by his sister that the Commission on Audit found anomalous.


“He has always exhibited a thug and macho persona in his TV shows. He should have stopped playing that role when he entered government. But since he clearly wants to remain a bully and continues to be unreasonable, he better pack his bags and remain in the entertainment industry or better yet, join the gang of thugs where he really belongs,” Matula said.


Nagkaisa added that apart from construction workers, Tulfo also offended health workers last year when he badgered an emergency room doctor at the Philippine General Hospital (PGH).


“We saw the video that he himself posted on social media of a health worker at the PGH whom he badmouthed to no end, when the poor stressed and tired doctor was just doing his job, following hospital triage protocol and reminding him of the rights to privacy of the hospital and the child car accident victim,” Matula said.


Then TV host Tulfo demanded special attention for a child his driver ran into while taking video footage of the doctor and the child he victimized when there were patients at the PGH- ER that needed more emergency attention.


“We don’t need more bullies and cold- hearted officials in government. Appointed, elected and career government officials should abide by the lofty standards of honesty, integrity and accountability set out by Republic Act 6713: Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Government Employees,” Matula said.


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Friday, 24 May 2019
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