Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. on Monday ordered the Philippine Embassy in Kuwait to stop the payment of P7.5 million in blood money to the family of slain Filipino worker Jeanelyn Villavende.
Locsin expressed disapproval over the possibility of entertaining the payment of blood money by the convicted employers of Villavende in exchange for withdrawing the charges against them.
He ordered Philippine Ambassador to Kuwait Noordin Pendosina Lomondot to ensure that the death penalty for Villavende’s employer would be carried out.
“Lomondot to report in writing the shenanigans going on there and what he’s done about it, what he’s done to stop it. We had this; he lost it; he’s gotta get it back. All trips to Middle East for photo ops and palabas stopped. Travel money needed to match blood money,” Locsin said, in a Twitter post.
“Malacañang is on to this ignominy. There must be hell to pay if anyone on our side shows ambivalence and a lack of total commitment. This is unforgivable,” he added.
In an earlier post, Locsin said any offer of blood money must be rejected.
“There will be blood. I renounce [and] reject any offer of blood money for her torture/murder. I want two lives for the life they took. The top-notch lawyer hired by the Department of Foreign Affairs to prosecute is not authorized to suggest or accept blood money from her killers,” Locsin said.
“If I catch anyone in DFA making that suggestion they’re fired. I will not accept an improvement in Kuwait’s labor standards either. All I care about is blood for blood. Meanwhile, I will post her autopsy photos in the halls of DFA.”
Philippine and Kuwaiti officials earlier met and expressed hope that the issues on the rights and protections for the 150,000 Filipino domestic workers in Kuwait would be resolved through the soon-to-be-convened Joint Committee Meeting on the 2018 Agreement on Domestic Workers.
In December, a Kuwaiti court sentenced Villavende’s female employer to death by hanging as she assaulted the Filipina “for days and imprisoned her in a room until her death” in 2019.