Palace elated by arrest of Demafelis’ recruiter
MANILA – Malacañang on Thursday expressed elation that Agnes Tuballes, alleged recruiter of slain migrant worker Joanna Demafelis, surrendered to authorities.
“It’s good that she surrendered because she will really be arrested if she does not turn herself in,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque Jr. said in a Palace media briefing.
Roque said President Rodrigo R. Duterte was the one who made directive to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to go after the recruiter of Demafelis to get her side.
“We are happy that she surrendered and spared the NBI from conducting a man hunt for her. There will be many questions that she has to answer,” Roque said.
He said Tuballes has to answer why Demafelis’ employer was changed without informing the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA).
According to media reports, Tuballes said she decided to surrender to clear her name, pointing to Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Global E-Human Resources Inc. as the one that facilitated Demafelis’ papers going to Kuwait.
Tuballes said she was not the prime suspect in the killing of Demafelis, claiming she also worked in Kuwait from 2007 to 2013.
Demafelis’ body was found inside a freezer in an abandoned apartment by his employers in Kuwait last month, prompting Duterte to order deployment ban of Filipino workers in the Gulf state.
Last week, Demafelis’ Lebanese employer Nadel Essaf Assaf and his Syrian wife Mona Hassoun were arrested on suspicion of killing Demafelis who left for Kuwait in 2014.
Malacañang had welcomed the arrest of the couple, hoping the two would be prosecuted and punished for Demafelis’ gruesome murder.
Duterte visited a week ago the wake of Demafelis and promised her family that his government would seek justice for her and other Filipino workers killed and abused by their employers in Kuwait and other countries. (Jelly Musico/PNA)