DAVAO CITY, Philippines – Families of victims in the NCCC mall fire commemorated the first month since the tragic event took place in December last year.
Lighting candles at where the incident happened, they were with labor groups, including the Southern Mindanao Chapter of Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU) and the Business Process Outsourcing Independent Employees Network (BIEN).
The event was followed by a protest, where reechoed their demand for justice as authorities are set to release a result of their probe into the incident in the first week of February.
“We are here to call for a speedy investigation on the NCCC Fire incident. It has already been a month and no one is still held accountable for the 38 lives lost,” said Carlo Olalo, the spokesperson of KMU in Southern Mindanao in an interview with Davao Today.
“We are doing the best that we can to bring this case to Congress and Senate for inquiry,” he added.
Olalo reiterated KMU’s previous calls that the government should require businesses to strictly comply safety standards so no workers’ lives are lost.
But if it continues to be complacent with “big companies and capitalists,” he said, “more lives will be lost.”
Last week, fire gutted down two buildings of House Technology Industries (HTI) and its sister company, SCAD Services Pte. Ltd., inside the Export Processing Zone Authority (EPZA) in General Trias City.
The said fire has breached the 4th alarm and the authorities were assured that no one was inside, as reports said.
Based on records, HTI was the same company that was hit by a fire in February last year that had five people heavily burned to death in hospitals and with over a hundred employees injured.
The labor group has earlier identified the companies HTI, NCCC, RN SSI together with Bureau of Fire and Protection (BFP), Local Government Unit (LGU), Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA), and Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) accountable that paved way for these workplace infernos as reported in their independent probe.
At present, Olalo said that the independent investigation team is exhausting their efforts to reach the families of the victims as continuously gathers data from the reports and authorizing bodies involved.
“We will not stop until the perpetrators are put behind bars,” concluded Olalo. (davaotoday.com)