Agnes Mancilla, the overseas Filipino worker (OFW) in Saudi Arabia who was allegedly forced by her employer to drink household bleach, has gained consciousness two weeks after she was rushed to a hospital in Jizan City following the purported abuse.
Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Acting Assistant Secretary for Public Diplomacy Elmer Cato told DZRH that Edgar Badajos, Philippine consul general in the Saudi city of Jeddah, went to King Fahad Central Hospital in Jizan to check on the condition of Mancilla.
Cato said that according to Badajos, Mancilla’s condition had “already ” improved compared to the previous days” and that she was able to relay how she had been allegedly maltreated by her female employer since last year.
“Apparently ‘yong abuse started a year ago. Sinasabi ni Congen Badajos itong babaeng employer ang nagmamaltrato sa ating kababayan. Pinapatrabaho s’ya from 5 a.m. to 2 a.m. and we found out that for the past one month and 16 days bago s’ya dinala sa hospital, hindi s’ya pinapakain at coffee lang daw ‘yong iniinom n’ya,” Cato said Tuesday morning, during an interview with DZRH.
[Apparently, the abuse started a year ago. Consul General Badajos said the female employer was the one maltreating our countryman. She was told to work from 5 a.m. to 2 a.m. the next day and we found out that for the past one month and 16 days before she was sent to the hospital, she was not being fed and she was only drinking coffee.]
The supposed burn marks found in Mancilla’s body turned out to be bite marks allegedly by her employer, according to Cato. “Kinakagat daw s’ya ng kanyang among babae every time she (made) a mistake.”
Cato said that according to Mancilla, her employer allegedly forced her to drink the household bleach after the OFW mistakenly prepared tea. Mancilla then passed out and was rushed by the employer’s driver to the hospital’s intensive care unit.
“Nong April 1 pinaiinom daw s’ya ng Clorox no’ng magkamali s’yang magtimpla ng tsaa. So na-unconcious s’ya at isinugod agad ng driver sa hospital kung saan s’ya nasa ICU,” said Cato.
Badajos had already coordinated with authorities in Jizan and Mancilla’s employer had already been arrested by the Saudi police, according to the DFA official.
“(M)amaya ay pupunta si Congen Badajos sa mga kinauukulan do’n para i-coordinate at siguraduhin na ma-file ‘yong appropriate charges laban sa employer [Consul General Badajos will go to authorities later in the day to coordinate with them and make sure that appropriate charges will be filed against the employer],” said Cato.
He added that Badajos was looking into the possibility of transferring Mancilla in Jeddah where she could be taken cared of better by her relatives, who might be brought to the said city in coordination with the OFW’s recruitment agency in Manila.
“Tsine-check din ni Congen Badajos kung maaring ilipat si Agnes sa Jeddah kung saan s’ya p’wedeng tingnang mabuti in coordination with her recruitment agency here in Manila para ilipad do’n ang kanyang mga kamag-anak to look after her,” said Cato.