Palace condoles with family of stranded woman who died in Pasay footbridge; vows to assist stranded passengers
Malacañang extended on Thursday its condolences to the family of stranded woman at a footbridge in Pasay City and who died there allegedly due to coronavirus disease.
In a virtual press briefing, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said to prevent a similar incident from happening, the Palace urged the local government units to inform the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) of the stranded passengers in their area if they could not help these people.
He said stranded passengers near the Ninoy Aquino International Airport or bus stations would be brought to the Villamor Golf Course in Pasay City for rapid testing and possible stay there while waiting for scheduled travel in the provinces.
"We condole with the family of Michelle Silvertino who died while waiting for a bus that will bring her to the province," he said.
Silvertino, 33, died on June 5 after reportedly being stranded for five days at a footbridge in Pasay City while waiting for a bus to bring her home to Calabanga, Camarines Sur. The single parent reportedly left four minor children.
Roque said the DSWD Field Office is coordinating with Silvertino's family to assist her children.
"No one wanted this to happen but we will take steps to avoid similar incident from happening," he said.
He said the DSWD-National Capital Region has started helping those stranded, such as students, since last week.
"We are calling on the local governments. If you notice stranded (individuals) near the bus stations and at the airport in Pasay, inform the DSWD if you cannot help them," Roque said.
With what happened to Silvertino, Roque said it is now the policy of the government to assist all stranded passengers in the bus terminals and at the airport.
Roque said the Department of Transportation is in charge of bringing stranded passengers to Villamor Golf Course for rapid testing.
"We're just waiting the approval of Villamor if it would allow the (passengers) to temporarily stay there while waiting for their flights or the buses that will bring them home," he said.
Roque also reminded the public not to allow themselves to be fooled by those offering them jobs abroad, prompting the victims to go to the airport.
He also warned illegal recruiters, saying the government would go after them. Celerina Monte/DMS