• GILBERT P. BAYORAN
As the Department of Migrant Workers (DMW) prepares the repatriation of overseas Filipino workers in Israel, Annabella Alacre remains hopeful that her sister Loreta, a caregiver reported to have remained missing, is still alive and well.
Annabella, who went yesterday to the Provincial Capitol in Bacolod City, enlisted the help of Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson, after reporting the plight of her sister to the DMW and Overseas Workers Welfare Administration.
She disclosed that her younger sister, Loreta, was among the party revelers attending the Supernova Music Festival outside the Re’im Kibbutz, near the Gaza Strip, when it was attacked by Hamas fighters.
Lacson assured the family of Alacre of help from the provincial government. He added that OWWA is doing its best to connect to all Filipinos in Israel who want to come back to the Philippines.
He also said that the provincial government has a Migrant Resource Center (MRC) at the third floor of Provincial Capitol to assist Negrenses seeking help for the repatriation of family members in Israel.
MRC records showed that there are 231 OFWs from Negros Occidental, including the 64 in highly urbanized Bacolod City, working in Israel.
In a press briefing, DMW officer in charge Undersecretary Hans Leo Cacdac yesterday said that they have already received 22 requests for repatriation from Israel, composed of 19 caregivers and three hotel workers.
Annabella said that as of yesterday, they have no update yet from the DMW on the search for her missing sister.*