An official communicated the condolences of the Catholic Church to the families of the victims of the tragedy of the Iloilo Sea and urged the government to take measures to prevent such a “tragic” accident from happening again.
The archbishop of Jaro, Mons. José Romeo Lazo, expressed his regret for the dozens of lives that were lost when three boats overturned in front of the Strait of Iloilo on August 3, due to a strong storm surge and the rains of this era of the year.
The death toll has so far increased to 31, and there are no more missing, authorities said.
“We congregate with the families of the victims who died and sympathize with those who survived the accident,” said Lazo.
“We call on the government to take immediate measures to prevent these accidents from happening again,” he said.
The government has already suspended some coastguards and maritime officers in Iloilo and the island of Guimaras pending an investigation into the tragedy. The boats were reportedly allowed to navigate despite the storms that occurred during that day.
The archbishop thanked those who helped in the search and recovery operations of missing victims, as well as those who helped people affected by the tragedy.
“Let’s continue praying for the strength of the Lord in these times of great anguish,” said Lazo.