MANILA, Philippines — A total of 881 repatriated Filipino cruise ship workers from the United States arrived in Manila Wednesday as the world continues to contain the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said.
In a statement, the DFA said the group of repatriates is composed of 445 workers of the Norwegian Cruise Lines ships Norwegian Dawn and Norwegian Encore while the other 436 are from the cruise ships Costa Magica and Costa Favolosa of Costa Cruises.
“With the world grappling with the COVID-19 pandemic, the whole of Philippine government continues its efforts in responding to Filipinos both here in the country and those overseas,” the DFA said.
The repatriated cruise ship workers will undergo a mandatory 14-day facility-based quarantine which will be monitored by the Bureau of Quarantine, the DFA said.
“The DFA works with other government agencies and the private sector in this whole of government approach to facilitate the seamless repatriation of our workers,” Foreign DFA Undersecretary for Migrant Workers’ Affairs Sarah Lou Arriola said.
The repatriation of the Filipino crewmen was facilitated by the DFA, the Philippine Embassy in Washington, the Department of Health, the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration, the Department of Transportation, the Department of Interior and Local Government, and the seafarer’s local manning agencies.
The World Health Organization has declared COVID-19 a pandemic. Globally, the virus already infected more than 785,800 people and killed more than 37,800 as of March 31.
On the other hand, over 165,655 people have recovered so far from the disease, which was caused by a coronavirus named SARS-CoV-2 that first emerged in China’s Wuhan City in Hubei province in late 2019.