Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III confirmed that a total of 107 overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) in Saudi Arabia have died due to Covid-19, however, remains may be buried in the host country and not in the Philippines.
Bello revealed that 287 Filipinos in Saudi have died but the 180 did not die because of the virus.
He said in a radio interview in the Philippines that they will talk to the families of the 107 OFWs who died of Covid-19 about the possibility of burial in Saudi Arabia to prevent contamination.
He added that the spread of the virus may be greater if the remains are brought back to the Philippines.
Meanwhile, the remains of 180 OFWs who died of natural and other causes can be brought back to the Philippines. Bello said this will be possible should the Department of Transportation get the necessary clearance with two cargo planes ready to fly to Saudi Arabia this weekend.
He also revealed that the host country agreed to the request of the Philippines for additional time to repatriate the remains of the deceased OFWs.