Press Release
June 13, 2008

Villar seeks justice for Pinay who mysteriously died in Saudi

Senate President Manny Villar today called on the Department of Foreign Affairs to vigorously pursue the case of a 24-year-old Filipina who mysteriously died in Saudi Arabia.

Villar made the statement after the body of Eugenia Baja came home to her hometown in Bohol, four months after she died.

"To date, the number of OFWs who had unexplainable deaths in foreign lands continues to rise. The case of Baja should not go down as another statistic. Our foreign affairs department and the labor department should see to it that the true reason of her death will be ascertained and every legal action will be applied if needed," Villar said.

Accompanied by Migrante, Lilibeth Baja Garcia, sister of Eugenia, sought the help of Villar for Eugenia's body to be brought to the Philippines. They also asked the Senate President's help for a decent burial in Bohol.

Lilibeth said their family is concerned after getting conflicting information about Eugenia's death.

Baja's family received a call from the DFA that Eugenia died of sickness in a hospital on February 24, 2008. They later learned from a second DFA report that Eugenia allegedly killed herself by banging tiles on her head.

On May 24, 2008, Villar wrote DFA Sec. Alberto Romulo to assist in the immediate repatriation of Eugenia's remains. Yesterday, Eugenia's body was flown to Manila and transported to Tagbilaran this morning.

Villar will also ask the help of DOLE to assist in providing and processing the insurance, claims and financial assistance to Baja's family.

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