PhilHealth raises premium, angers OFWs

Updated 08 October 2013
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PhilHealth raises premium, angers OFWs

Various groups of Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs), including the Filipino migrant rights group, Migrante-Middle East and North Africa (M-MENA), have called for the boycott of Philippine Health’s move to increase the premium rate from January 2014.
According to this group, PhilHealth President and Chief Executive Officer Alexander Padilla announced Monday the new premium rate of 2,400 pesos for individually paying members with a monthly income of 25,000 pesos and below, while those whose income is above 25,000 pesos will have to pay a premium of at least 3,600 pesos annually. This will take effect in January, the group said.
The group leader urged other OFWs around the world and their dependents in the Philippines to intensify protest against the plan.


‘I’ve been waiting to get to Saudi Arabia for years’: Akon tells Asharqiah crowd

Updated 23 March 2019
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‘I’ve been waiting to get to Saudi Arabia for years’: Akon tells Asharqiah crowd

  • “First thing tomorrow morning, I’m headed to Makkah to perform Umrah” Akon said 
  • He entertained the crowd with some of his most popular hits at the Asharqiah Music Festival

DAMMAM: American rapper Akon captivated a packed crowd at the Asharqiah Music Festival on Friday, opening up the second night of musical festivities at Sharqiah Season with a special shout-out to Saudi Arabia.

“You have no idea, I’ve been waiting to get to Saudi for years, man,” Akon said, before launching into his song, “Gunshot.” Later, he told the crowd: “I’m seeing a tremendous change in Saudi Arabia here tonight."

At 8 p.m., under a bright moon on a beautifully cool night, Akon began his set, delighting fans who had spent over 10 minutes chanting his name in anticipation of his arrival.

He entertained the crowd with some of his most popular hits, including “Smack That,” “Mr. Lonely” and “Sorry: Blame It On Me.” And he wrapped things up with “I love you, Saudi... thank you for making me feel at home."

Backstage before the concert, Akon told Arab News how excited he was to be in Saudi Arabia for the first time. He was especially excited to visit one Saudi city in particular.

“First thing tomorrow morning, I’m headed to Makkah to perform Umrah.”