Bello: Labatt Jolly recalled temporarily

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Labor Attache Jalilo dela Torre

Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III has “temporarily” recalled the Philippine labor attache to Hong Kong so that he could answer charges against him.

Bello said he was recalling Labor Attache Jalilo Dela Torre so that he could answer a complaint that he was “playing favorites” with job recruiters.

“He is not being recalled permanently. We are just recalling him so he can come to the Philippines and explain his side,” Bello said in a phone interview.

“We sent a team to verify the complaint that he was playing favorites when it comes to accreditation. The team that went to Hong Kong recommended that he be recalled to explain,” he added.

Bello earlier said that a recruiter filed a complaint after failing to get a job quota for Filipino entertainers in Wanchai.

Dela Torre is also being investigated for issuing overseas employment certificates (OECs) to overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) in mainland China.

Dela Torre said there was nothing wrong with the issuance of OECs to Filipino professionals working in the mainland since this was allowed by Manila.

He also said that he did not approve the job quota for the Wanchai entertainers due to concerns that they might end up in prostitution.

Susan Ople, of the Blas F. Ople Policy Center, expressed disbelief that Dela Torre was being recalled.

She said Dela Torre was responsible for pursuing anti-trafficking cases versus illegal recruiters for Russia and the United Kingdom.

The labor attache was also credited for pushing for a provision in the employment contract of OFWs in Hong Kong that they cannot be forced to clean windows from the outside, especially in high-rise buildings.