The late Ambassador Domingo Lucenario Jr.
MANILA, Philippines — Overseas Filipino workers in Afghanistan held a special tribute recently for the late Ambassador Domingo Lucenario Jr., who died in a helicopter crash in Pakistan, where he was posted, in early May.
As ambassador to Pakistan, where he was posted in 2013, Lucenario had jurisdiction over Afghanistan where thousands of OFWs work in US bases with an estimated 300 others working outside the facilities, mostly with international organizations in Kabul like the World Bank, International Monetary Fund, International Red Cross, UN agencies and government ministries.
A statement from the Samahang Pinoy in Afghanistan, or SPA, most of who work outside US bases, honored Lucenario for, among others, working to lift a ban on the deployment of Filipinos there. The ban was lifted last year, originally covering OFWs.
He also helped SPA push for the expansion of the ban exemption to cover OFWs outside American bases, including helping set up a meeting in January between representatives of the group and officials of the Department of Foreign Affairs and the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration.
At this meeting, SPA said, “Ambassador Doy was able to convince the DFA officials to incorporate (the) SPA petition to the existing ban exemption,” going so far as to draft the letter resolution and assuring them “their petition would be resolved end May.”
The group called Lucenario a “real servant of the Filipino people” whose death “is indeed a great loss to us.”