Over 100 Filipino nurses in Saudi jailed, deported for fake work certificates

Many Filipino nurses face imprisonment or deportation after a back-checking verification process proves that the work documents submitted by their recruitment agencies contained false information about them.

Report said the nurses themselves were not aware of the forged documents, an act probably committed by their recruitment agencies.

Blas F. Ople Policy Center & Training Institute President Susan Ople explained in an interview on News TV on Friday that the applications were pinged by a private company hired by the Saudi government.

DataFlow Group, a company that offers immigration compliance services, was commissioned by the Saudi government to “screen the credentials of healthcare professionals practicing in the Kingdom.”

“Ibig sabihin, kahit two years ago ka pa nasa-Saudi or three years ago, dahil may bago na silang verification system, nache-check nila kung talaga bang tugma, talaga bang tunay ‘yung binibigay mong impormasyon,” Ople said.

The years of employment stated on the certificate of employment by some OFWs were proven as false by DataFlow.

In these cases, the information is fed directly to the Ministry of Health of Saudi, who then notify nurses or their employers that they are under investigation for giving fraudulent information.

One of these nurses is “Fred,” as seen in a report by JP Soriano on State of the Nation on Thursday.

Fred was detained after it was discovered that the number of years of experience as a nurse in the Philippines on his resume had been forged.

The nurse was told that he would be held in Saudi until the Health Ministry finishes their investigation into the forgery allegedly committed by his recruitment agency without his consent.

“Hindi alam nung nurses kung ano ‘yung pinadala na documents and may mga documents na na-uncover ‘yung Saudi government through the DataFlow system na hindi naman talaga three years experience,” Ople said in the report.

“Ang naiipit, ‘yung nurses. Some have been arrested. Others have been deported,” she continued.

Even nurses who have been promoted to high positions in hospitals were affected by Saudi’s back-checking of past applications.

Ople further explained that some recruitment agencies directly send sealed documents to their foreign counterparts, who then directly transmit them to hospitals.

She said it was possible that recruitment agencies did so without knowing the new screening system of Saudi Arabia.

“Meron namang mga nurse na maaring, dahil gusto lang nila talagang ma-accept sila, eh hindi rin tunay din ‘yung impormasyon sa kanilang certificate of employment,” Ople noted.

Recruitment agencies have yet to respond to GMA News’ request for their statement. (Rie Takumi/KG, GMA News)

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