PINOY VICTIMS. Philippine Ambassador to the United Arab Emirates Hjayceelyn Quintana (right) attends the virtual Laging Handa briefing on Thursday (Sept. 3, 2020). Quintana said two Filipinos killed in a gas explosion in Abu Dhabi last August 31 would be released once the investigation is completed. (Screenshot)
MANILA – Authorities at the United Arab Emirates are expected to release the remains of two Filipino nationals who were killed in a gas explosion in Abu Dhabi once the investigation is finished, the Philippine Embassy in the UAE said Thursday.
“Dahil ito ay isang aksidente, kailangan muna na matapos ‘yong imbestigasyon at iyan ang aming nililinaw sa mga pamilya at humihingi po kami ng pang-unawa (Because this is an accident, they still need to complete their investigation and this is what we’ve told the families as we ask for their understanding),” Ambassador Hjayceelyn Quintana said during the virtual Laging Handa briefing.
Quintana said the embassy has already reached out to the kin of the victims to explain the process for the release of the remains.
The UAE authorities, on the other hand, assured they would expedite their investigation into the case.
“Mismong sila ay nakikipagusap sa pamilya at kami ang nagiging tulay. Kapag natapos iyon ay saka naman natin uupuan kung ano ang next steps para sa mga pamilya na naiwan (The UAE authorities themselves are coordinating with the families and we’re acting as the bridge. Once the investigation is done, we will take the necessary steps to assist the bereaved families),” she said.
Ten Filipino nationals were also injured in the August 31 restaurant explosion with eight requiring medical attention in hospitals.
Quintana said five of them have been discharged while the other three are still recuperating in two separate hospitals.
With Filipino nationals making up the third biggest group of expatriates in the UAE, she advised all OFWs to remain safe and be “mindful of the security and safety protocols” of the host country. (PNA)