June 4, 2020
CURRENT AFFAIRS

POLO Riyadh Starts Distribution of DOLE-AKAP to OFWs — Mustafa

Twitter: @edd1819, Instagram: @bluestar0910, Facebook: SDN — Science, Digital & Current Affairs

By EDD K. USMAN & DEEN MOHAMMAD 

MANILA/RIYADH, Saudi Arabia (SDN) — Thousands of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) stand to receive cash assistance from the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).

Beneficiaries are land-based and sea-based OFWs displaced by the nearly five-month 2019 coronavirus disease (Covid-19) global pandemic.

The assistance is from the “Abot Kamay ang Pagtulong” (DOLE-AKAP) program which Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III announced in April. It has a budget of Php1.5 billion.

IMG_20200515_224639
Recipient of DOLE-AKAP through POLO Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. POLO Dammam (Eastern Region) and POLO Jeddah (Western Region) are also processing their respective AKAP applications. POLO Riyadh covers the biggest number of OFWs.

Each OFW whose application passed a validation process will receive US$200, or Php10,000, or its equivalent currency where the worker is based.

Bello emphasized that DOLE-AKAP’s funds cover administrative expenses of Central and Regional operations to be incurred in the program’s implementation. Source of the funds is from DOLE Covid-19 Adjustment Measures Program (DOLE-CAMP) worth Php1.5 billion.

In the KSA, there are over 800,000 OFWs, the biggest Filipino community in the Middle East Region, figures from the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (DOLE-POLO) in Riyadh, the capital of KSA, showed.

IMG_20200515_224746
More DOLE-AKAP beneficiaries, OFWs in Saudi Arabia. One-time financial aid worth Php10,000 (US$200).

In fact, according to Labor Attaché Nasser S. Mustafa, head of the DOLE-POLO in Riyadh, the capital of KSA, the distribution of the “one-time financial assistance” has already started.

He said POLO Riyadh received more than 20,000 applications for the DOLE-AKAP.

IMG_20200515_224841
Happy faces with their Php10,000 DOLE-AKAP aid.

In an advisory Mustafa issued, he said “acceptance of online applications” for AKAP “shall be temporarily suspended effective 11 May 2020.”

He said applications “shall resume upon approval and release of the additional fund request of DOLE.” The labor attaché issued the advisory per DOLE instructions.

However, POLO Riyadh assured that applications it received on or before the cut-off date shall be acted upon on a first-come, first-served basis, or until all the applications have been acted upon.

IMG_20200515_224932
Food assistance for OFWs affected by the Covid-19 lockdown in Saudi Arabia provided by DOLE’s POLO Riyadh headed by Labor Attaché Nasser Mustafa.

Over in the DOLE Central Office in Manila, the labor department continues to accept applications for the AKAP assistance, People’s Television (PTV 4) reported on Friday (May 15).

Original target beneficiaries was 150,000 OFWs, but as of May 12 more than 400,000 applications were submitted to the DOLE.

SDN — Science & Digital News learned that the number of approved AKAP applications will depend on the funding DOLE will provide to each POLO station.

The department approved a total of 142,000 applications, with 100,000 OFWs already given the Php10,000 Covid-19 assistance.

IMG_20200515_225036
Food assistance through POLO Riyadh.

 Apparently because of the massive number of applications, the DOLE requested the Department of the Budget and Management (DBM) for Php2.5 billion additional funds, but only Php1 billion was granted.down measures in the Kingdom hit home hard on the Filipino community.

Mustafa said because of lockdown and curfew POLO Riyadh is delivering the AKAP aid on a door-to-door mode the same way it did with the food package assistance.

Mustafa is labor attaché for Riyadh and Central Region Office as well as the officer-in-charge for the POLO in Kuwait.

He previously served, among others, in Tripoli, Libya. (SDN)

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All images credit to and thanks to POLO Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

35 thoughts on “POLO Riyadh Starts Distribution of DOLE-AKAP to OFWs — Mustafa

    1. Hi Lea, thanks for reading the story on AKAP distribution by POLO Riyadh. Sorry to tell you I have no idea about the answer to your inquiry. I am planning to write another story on the DOLE-AKAP directive issued by Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III and help clarify issues about who are qualified to receive the one-time financial assistance. Salamat po, take care.

    1. Good morning from Manila, Albert. Thanks for reading the story on SDN about AKAP distribution in Riyadh by the POLO station there. Sorry, I have no idea about answer to your question, but the memo on AKAP issued in April by Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III identified the OFWs who are qualified to receive the US$200 (Php10,000) assistance for OFWs affected by the Covid-10 pandemic in their host country. Salamat po, Ingat kayo. I will try to write another story about the Bello memo on AKAP so you and other OFWs will know who are qualified to receive the assistance.

  1. Sir.. Hindi PA po kami nkatanggap NG cash assistance mula sa dole akap po. Sir bkit wla na pong online application.. Sir Sana namn Pati kami mabigyan. At matulongan nyu po kami. Ofw Riyadh po. Slamt

    1. Salam and good morning from Manila, Michael, maraming salamat sa pagbasa sa story about the AKAP distribution by POLO Riyadh. Much appreciated. Have you already sent your application to POLO Riyadh headed by Labatt Nasser Mustafa? Labatt Mustafa temporarily suspended the online application starting May 11 for AKAP because of fund constraint as stated in the story. The suspension is on the orders of DOLE as it awaits the additional fund for AKAP which the DBM approved, that is additional Php1 billion. I would respectfully suggest that you check updates from POLO Riyadh often in case online application is re-open. Salamat po, ingat kayo.

  2. Paano ba yan? Di ba pwede lahat na ofw ang bigyan? Kami din dito nasa bahay kami nag work at almost 4 months la pa sahud at wala na Pera pang bili ng pagkain. Paano ba mka tangap niyan.

    1. Hello Andrew, thanks for reading. First, I am not working at POLO Riyadh, so my reply to you may not be enough for your question. As much as I gathered there are certain OFW “sectors” who are qualified to receive the US$200 “one-time financial assistance” for OFWs affected by Covid-10 lockdown where they are based. These are contained in the memo issued in April by Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III. As the news article says, POLO Riyadh has temporarily suspended the filing of applications for AKAP, but still accepted in DOLE Manila. POLO Riyadh assesses the 20,000 applications it received and I think the other POLO also in Dammam and Jeddah are doing likewise. I would respectfully suggest for you to contact the POLO station which covers your area. POLO Riyadh suspended the online application on orders from DOLE as it awaits additional funding it requested from DBM. Thanks and stay safe.

  3. Hindi pa po kami nabibigyan dito sa sulay exit 18 madami po kaming pilipino dito mga ready mix drivers po kami God bless

    1. Hi Rod, salamat sa reaction mo. Naka apply ba kayo lahat dyan ng AKAP with POLO Riyadh? Distribution is door-to-door, meaning inihahatid sa bahay-bahay ang pera sa mga na-approved to receive the US$200 assistance. Try ko iparating ito sa friend ko in Riyadh who knows Labatt Nasser Mustafa. Take care.

      1. Salam Cresencia, hope you and the rest of your fellow OFWs in Saudi Arabia are well despite the scary pandemic. As far as I have learned, OFWs on-site, meaning ‘yon mga nasa work or host country pa rin nila, should apply online through the POLO station that covers them. If you are covered by POLO Riyadh, you have to apply online with POLO Riyadh. But as of I know, online application with POLO Riyadh has been temporarily suspended since May 11 as DOLE awaits new funding (this info is in the article). Meanwhile, here is the pertinent website of OWWA for DOLE-AKAP financial assistance. Ingat po kayo.

        Try to access and visit this:

        http://dole-akap.owwa.gov.ph

      2. Hello po kmi po dito sa dhakil exit 30 po kahit food assistance po wala pa nakarating samin no work no pay din kami …at yun sa akap po wala din … Salamat po sana madinig din kami🙏🙏🙏

      3. Hi Nancy, hopefully everyone is well. Forward ko message mo sa POLO Riyadh. Naka apply kayo ng DOLE-AKAP, kasi suspended ang online application since May 11. Thanks for reading.

  4. Good afternoon po ask ko lang dito sa jeddah nag submit me ng form ng akap pero wala pa din po reply

    1. Hello Alvin, thanks for the comment. My little knowledge about how DOLE-POLO stations work is that there is a POLO Jeddah which covers your area. But I hope concerned authorities can learn about your concerns. Take care.

  5. Good day po baka nmn po kami natulungan dito Lang po kami sa loob ng accomodation no work no pay po at may maintenance po kasi ako at may mga anak akong nangangailangan sa pinas salamat po at Godbless at Sana nmn PO matapos na tong pandemic para bumalik sa normal lahat salamat po….

    1. Salam Editha, I PM’ed this article to POLO Riyadh so they can see the comments/reactions from OFWs like you. This is really are trying times, I hope this article through its comments section can reach the authorities in Saudi Arabia and in the Philippines.

  6. We have submitted since last April 16, up to now we did not receive any reply coming from them we don’t even know if there is assurance or not.. Some of my friends they received already which we send the same time and date, we are sending emails and messages and even calls, but NO ONE ENTERTAIN US!!

    Is this how social government employees work? If they really care for the people even a single reply they will do, are they totally busy enough that even a reply they can’t do?

    Posting some of this pictures just for them to show to the people that they are helping, but what is exactly happening is almost 80% of the ofw here in saudi are fighting for Hunger and waiting for the government help, because of this pandemic. But the government NEVER CARES,. A single reply will not consume 1 hour on their work, just to let other Filipino updated if they are qualified or not.. Be fair to anyone everyone has the right to know the status of their application, obviously we are waiting for nothing…

    1. Hi Chris, thanks for reading the article. Just hoping concerned authorities like POLO Riyadh or other POLO stations in your area will learn about your important concerns. Ingat po, kabayan.

  7. Good day po.. Sana Ang unain niyo Ang stop work. Nakakasiguro po ba kayo Ang mga binibigyan niyo stop work? Tsaka bakit po close Ang link niyo Dole-akap.owwa.gov.ph upo maraming nag aaply pero Sana wag niyo iclose marami pa po nangangailangan. Ako po mag 2moth na stop work. Gusto ko Sana makakuha ng cash assistance. Ngaun po Alam niyo mag oopen na sa MAY 31. Sana bago mag 31 mabigyan niyo ako ng cash assistance Isa po ako sa nangangailangan. Alam ko marami nag massage Sana mapansin niyo to minsahe ko. Salamat po..

  8. Hello po …maraming salamat po isa aq s nakatanggap knina ng Dole-Akap financial assistance ❤️❤️❤️ Maraming salamat po sa President Duterte at s secretary at sa buong stop ng polo Riyadh thank you po tlga malaking tulong po ito samin ❤️❤️❤️🙏🏻🙏🏻🙏🏻

  9. Good morning ask KO Lang dito po kami SA sakaka Al jouf until now wala pa rin ang.cash assistance .nakapag fill up na po kami ng relocator form ..bakit po hanggang ngaun wala Pang update?

    1. Good morning from Manila, Maritess, hopefully you are well. As far as I learned, POLO Riyadh (If your area is under POLO Riyadh) continues to deliver the assistance through door-to-door every day, but the curfew and other quarantine restrictions in Riyadh are slowing them down. I hope they will get to your neighborhood soon. God bless.

  10. Salam sir.ramadhan kareem paano po kami masali jn dole -akap dto po kami burayda gassim almost 4 months po wala kming work mg asawa we have 2 kids sana po matulongan nyo kami at masali po jn sana po cash wala po kami account pleease po God bless …

  11. Sir Gd pm isa rin po ako na nag passa sa dole akap form noon pa pong april13,2020 . Marami pong kasamahan ko na ang nereplayan ng OWWA pero sabay- sabay kmi mawalan ng trabaho . Sana mabigyan din po kmi ng owwa .

  12. ako po nasa riyadh. sabi po extend po ba Dole-Akap.. papaano po ba fill up on lines sa totoo lang po undocumented po ako 3 years na po ako sa lbas. kong I tatanong nio kong nka pang punta po ako sa Polo wala po tlga akong hawak na papel galing sa Polo.. la ako ma submit na document sa knila. ng work po ako sa gym bago mang lockdown ang saudi.. pinasukan ko pong agency di po binigay sakin sahod buwan ng april ng March nlang wala ng work.. at ng buwan ng May wala dina po nka pang work la din po pera. kahit food assistant nalang po sir.. malaking bagay na po sakin at sa 2 kong kasama hirap po sir kasi ng rent room pa kami 3 share po kami sa bayad..
    . slamat po.

    1. Hi Niyera,
      Hope you found some help already. Sorry for this late reply. What I can do is forward your messafe to POLO Riyadh, and see if they can help you. If you want, PM me on Messenger (Edd K. Usman) and give me your address and mobile # there so I can give it to a friend at POLO Riyadh).

      God bless.

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