Quantcast
Latest Stories

Finally, OFW killed in Syria is home

By

PASACAO, Camarines Sur—The remains of overseas Filipino worker Mer-An Montezor, 23, were finally brought home Saturday, 50 days after she was killed at a checkpoint in the strife-torn city of Homs in Syria.

Montezor’s body arrived at the Legazpi City Airport at 9:40 a.m. on April 14.

The repatriation took almost two months as the Philippine Embassy in Syria had difficulty searching for documentation on Montezor, who slipped into Syria as a tourist, according to her only sibling Almer.

The vehicle carrying Montezor’s body traveled seven and a half hours from Legazpi City to this port town southwest of Naga City, where their small concrete house stands.

Long wait

Almer said it was a long wait for the family, since he was informed about the death of his sister through the municipal mayor of Pasacao on March 13, or 18 days after armed gangs manning a checkpoint opened fire on the car she was riding in with the family she worked for on Feb. 24.

He said he was told by a representative of the Department of Foreign Affairs in Legazpi City that the Syrian couple and their two kids, whom she served as a domestic helper, were also killed after they failed to stop at the checkpoint on their way to Damascus to flee the violence in Homs, the center of unrest in Syria.

Lamberto Regnim, 23, Montezor’s boyfriend, said he last talked to her on Feb. 9. “She wanted to come home because of the escalating violence but her  employer would not allow her since she had yet to finish her two-year contract on July 23 this year.”

Regnim said he had no premonition of her death despite the prolonged lack of communication because Montezor had told him of the poor cell phone signal where she was.

He said Montezor’s monthly salary was $150 or P6,402 at the present peso-dollar rate from which she regularly remitted P2,000 to her family.

Irish Mae Flores, 23, a cousin of Montezor’s and a former OFW in Dubai, said they were recruited by an agency called Worldview, which had closed down.

Flores said her cousin was able to leave the country through the Manila-Hong Kong, Hong Kong-Syria route, entering Hong Kong as tourist and taking off from there to her work destination.

Flores came home from Dubai without finishing her one-year contract in June 2011, less than a year after she started working as a domestic helper for a couple working for the government.

Undocumented

Flores said she realized she was an undocumented OFW when she was already on the plane bound for Hong Kong. She said she was instructed by someone from Worldview to open the sealed envelope that contained what turned out to be a tourist visa.

Flores said she received only P8,000 monthly and not P12,804 ($300) as promised by Worldview.

Almer said his family had been promised P40,000 in government assistance by Olive Palala, a representative of the Philippine Embassy in Libya.

He said the expenses for the wake and burial were shouldered by the local government of Pasacao.

Remegilda Montezor, 73, Mer-An and Almer’s grandmother who raised them after their parents separated, said she had accepted her granddaughter’s fate.

“Mer-An was our breadwinner since her father died. Without her, we (she and Almer) will have to struggle to survive,” she said.


Follow Us


Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter


Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Homs , Legazpi City , Mer-An Montezor , ofws , Overseas Filipino workers , repatriation , Syria



Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement
Advertisement

News

  • US teacher fired over comment on black president
  • Magnitude-7.5 earthquake shakes Mexican capital
  • Title of new Hillary Clinton book: ‘Hard Choices’
  • Filipinos, Dutch re-enact crucifixion of Christ
  • 14 killed in car bombing in Homs
  • Sports

  • Nadal ousted by Ferrer in Monte Carlo quarters
  • Pacquiao shorts in Bradley fight sold for P1.7M in LA auction
  • Ryu pitches Dodgers past Giants
  • Alonso sets the pace in Chinese GP practice
  • Heat seek Three-peat but Spurs, Pacers top seeds
  • Lifestyle

  • Levine designs womenswear with help from fiancee
  • Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Nobel laureate, dies at 87
  • Ford Mustang turns 50 atop Empire State Building
  • Pro visual artists, lensmen to judge Pagcor’s photo contest
  • ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  • Entertainment

  • Myx TV premieres Asian American ‘docu-series’
  • A nutty finale for ‘Scandal,’ TV’s craziest show
  • EXO postpones release of mini album ‘Overdose’
  • ‘X-men’ filmmaker slams ‘fabricated’ sex attack claims
  • Singer Chris Brown’s bodyguard on trial in DC
  • Business

  • US commerce secretary spells out economic facet of ‘pivot to Asia’
  • Italy sells luxury state cars on eBay
  • Asian shares mostly up in quiet trade
  • Dollar up in Asia on US jobs data, Ukraine deal
  • Barbie doll has a problem
  • Technology

  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Opinion

  • Editorial cartoon, April 17, 2014
  • A humbler Church
  • Deepest darkness
  • ‘Agnihotra’ for Earth’s health
  • It’s the Holy Week, time to think of others
  • Global Nation

  • Las Vegas ‘Pinoy Pride’ fest hails Filipino heritage
  • Marking Jesus’ journey on Good Friday
  • Filipina accomplice arrested for fake bills in Malaysia
  • DoH denies Filipino nurse no longer positive for MERS virus
  • WHO warns vs spread of MERS-Cov, urges vigilance in taking precautions
  • Marketplace