DFA chief hails Filipino ‘sailing ambassadors’


Foreign Affairs Executive Director for Migrant Workers Affairs Ricardo Endaya (3rd from right) and Foreign Affairs Speacial Assistant Enrico Fos (2nd from left) welcome the Filipino crewmembers at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport. DFA Photo

MANILA, Philippines—Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert  Del Rosario has commended the Filipino crewmembers of doomed Italian cruise ship Costa Concordia for their “competence, professionalism and humanity, even under extreme pressure.”

“You are men and women of courage, heroism and dedication,” said Del Rosario of the 296 Filipino crewmembers of the luxury liner that ran aground off Italy’s Tuscan coast last week. “We commend you for showing to the world the best traits of the Filipino seafarers.”

Unlike the Italian captain who abandoned his crippled vessel, the Filipinos and other crewmembers stayed to help evacuate the panicked passengers.

“The Philippine Embassy in Rome received important feedback from other crew members as well as passengers of your brave acts manifesting competence, professionalism and humanity, even under extreme pressure,” said Del Rosario.

“In the words of President Benigno S. Aquino III, you are our ‘sailing ambassadors’,” he told the Filipino crewmembers who have arrived in Manila in three batches since Thursday.

The 17-deck liner crashed into rocks off Giglio on the night of January 13 with 4,229 passengers and crew from 60 countries on board and began to keel over just as passengers were settling down for supper at the start of their cruise.

Eleven people have been confirmed dead in the tragedy so far including four French nationals, one Italian and a Spaniard among the passengers and two crew members — a Peruvian waiter and a Hungarian violinist.

Three of the bodies recovered have not yet been identified.

Relatives of the 21 people still missing have travelled to Giglio and towns on the Italian mainland, clinging to the hope that their loved ones survived.

Del Rosario expressed relief all the Filipino crew are safe.

“We assure you of the government’s continued support and assistance, as you join your families, recover from your recent sad experience, and return to work at the earliest opportunity,” he said.

“The DFA recognizes and appreciates all the assistance provided to you by our Embassy in Rome, the Filipino community in Italy, the local residents of Giglio Island, and the relevant Italian authorities.”  With Agence France-Presse

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  • Doodz

    God Bless you all..It is in the hearts of Filipinos that in time of need and in danger we are there ready to offer our lives to save other. It is the virtue of compassion that our parents and grandparents sowed in our heart and soul. It is our spirituality and trust to the LORD..Wish this will remain in the  tenet of Fillipino soul despite of corrupt leaders we have..Leaders who destroy our values. Hindi tayo pinababayaan ng Panginoon. God Bless you all!

  • Anonymous

    Kahanga-hanga ang mga Pilipino at Pilipinang nasa labas ng Pilipinas! Sila ang tanging nagbibigay ng karangalan sa pangalang Pilipinas. Hindi nakapagtataka ang ginawang kabayanihan at katapangan ng mga Pinoy at Pinay na nagtatrabaho sa Costa Concordia. Dapat lamang na sila ay parangalan at ipakilala sa mga mamamayan ng Pilipinas upang maging halimbawa sila ng mga kabataang sa ngayon ay uhaw sa pagkakaroon ng tunay at marangal na  idolo sa loob ng bansa.

  • Anonymous

    Other countries never mentioned bravery things like this; only in the Philippines.

    Nagbubuhat nanaman ata tayo ng bangko.

  • Anonymous

    Pano naman po yung Pilipinong kapitan at asst. kapitan at crew ng lumubog na barkong Rena doon sa New Zealand? Milyones na ang nagastos ng gobyerno ng NZ at malaking kasiraan sa kalikasan at mga ibon at hayop ang namatay at nalugi sa turismo. Para atang walang masyadong narinig sa gobyerno ng Pilipinas, kahit note of sympathy man lang galing sa Palasyo. Dapat sa achievement at failure, may acknowledgment.

  • smokey

    You all made us Filipinos proud. God will always be with you.

  • Anonymous

    defense lawyer to witness: mr witness, you have been testifying here for days, can you prove to this court that you really exist?
    witness: i’m here sir therefore i exist
    lawyer: in order to be here you must have started somewhere. do you have anything to prove that you have a beginning?
    witness: i was born sir and i have my birth certificate to prove that.
    lawyer: do you have personal knowledge when your birth certificate was filled? do you know personally the person who filled your birth certificate and have you seen the filling of the information therein personally?
    witness: er…no sir
    lawyer: i move yer ener to expunge all the testimonies of this witness from the record because this witness does not exist! why? because yer honor, his proof of existence is based on mere hearsay therefore its irrelevant, immaterial and impertinent !

    • Mamang Pulis


  • Patrick Mendoza

    Gloria “Hannibal Lecter” Arroyo.


  • Ernesto

    Sir, if this article gets reprinted, is it possible to highlight or make bold the ninth paragraph.  I have long been thinking along this line and this article just confirmed it.  Many thanks to you for the brilliant articles published lately by the Philippine Daily Inquirer.

  • Lakay Adol

    Kulay dilaw ka talaga Conrado simula pa nung panahon ni Cory!!!

  • Constantine

    Thats the line of the greatest pretender Joker Arroyo against De Quiros which is of course not true.  The crying senator without a cause!!!!!!!!!

  • secret

    “Oo! Inaamin ko, saging lang kami! Pero maghanap ka ng puno… sa buong Pilipinas, saging lang ang may puso. Saging lang ang may puso!”

    – Mark Lapid, in Tatlong Baraha

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