By Ferdinand Patinio
MANILA — The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) on Wednesday reiterated its warning to overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) in Hong Kong to be vigilant amid the escalating protests and public disruptions on the island.
Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III issued the reminder after receiving reports on the series of protest actions that resulted in the disruption of public transport and business activities in various parts of the Chinese autonomous region.
“We are again urging all our OFWs in Hong Kong to exercise caution by staying indoors and keeping away from the locations where protest activities are taking place,” he said in a statement.
He added that he issued the appeal to Filipino workers for their safety and security and assured that the Philippine Overseas Labor Office continues to monitor developments in the area.
He noted that based on latest advisory issued by the Philippine Consulate General in Hong Kong, among the reported areas where protests are to be held in Tsim Sha Tsui Police Station on October 10; New Town Plaza Shatin, October 12; Victoria Park and Edinburgh Place, October 13; Edinburgh Place and Chater Garden, October 14; and Resumption of Legislative Council, October 16.
Mass actions are also scheduled in Riverpark Tai Wai to Shatin, October 20; Yuen Long MTR Station, October 21; Tamar Park Admiralty, October 26; and Prince Edward MTR Station, October 31.
Bello also urged Filipinos working in Hong Kong to refrain from wearing black or white-colored upper garments while on the streets to avoid being mistaken for protesters.
The protests stemmed from the plan to allow extraditions of criminal suspects to the mainland, which have been scrapped.
Tension in the region escalated as Hong Kong’s government implemented a ban on wearing face masks, which took effect on Saturday, aimed at preventing violence in anti-government rallies. (PNA)