DFA to shoulder repatriation cost of drowned couple in Maldives

DFA to shoulder repatriation cost of drowned couple in Maldives

MANILA — The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) will shoulder the repatriation expenses of a newly-wed couple who drowned in Maldives.

Nikko Quiogue, a friend of the victims Leomer and Erika Joyce Lagradilla, earlier took to social media a request for support to repatriate the couple’s remains.

“DFA confirms to shoulder the full costs of getting Leomer and Erika back home. We are beyond grateful and happy that Eka and Mer can finally rest having their loved ones around them,” Quiogue said in a Facebook post Tuesday.

According to him, the amount needed to bring back their remains back to the Philippines is PHP634,000 each or PHP1.2 million.

The Lagradilla couple’s next of kin visited Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin on Tuesday who expressed condolences for their loss.

During their meeting, Locsin assured that DFA will extend assistance in the repatriation of their remains.

Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary Elmer Cato confirmed that the agency will shoulder all the expenses.

The couple from Laguna were married on December 18 and left Manila for their honeymoon in the South Asian nation on January 9.

The two, who drowned while snorkeling, were rescued by resort workers but were pronounced dead upon arrival at a local hospital. Joyce Ann L. Rocamora /PNA-northboundasia.com