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24-year old Filipina student abducted,found dead in Ireland – DFA

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Wednesday, May 23rd, 2018

People laid flowers and lit candles for Jastine Valdez during a vigil in her hometown of Wicklow.


LIMERICK, Ireland – The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) confirmed on Wednesday that the remains of 24-year-old Filipino student, Jastine Valdez has been found.

The Philippine Embassy in London said Valdez had just left her home in Wicklow country when she was reportedly abducted by a 40-year old man identified as Mark Hennessy.

The victim was last seen on Saturday being dragged inside a black Nissan car. The Irish Times reported that Valdez was killed several minutes later, allegedly due to strangulation. On Sunday, the suspect was killed after he resisted arrest.

The Filipino community held a vigil in memory of Jastine. Some of her friends condemned her brutal death.

“It just made me feel very sad. Because it shouldn’t happen to anyone especially to her. She only came here three years ago and she came here to work hard,” said Valdez’ friend Estefanie Rosetes.

“We went here to work and we know it is really safe. Sa nangyaring ito, malaki siyang change sa way of living namin dito (This incident changes our way of living here),” said May Erika Quiambao, Valdez’ Filipina friend.

In a statement, DFA has expressed condolences to the family of Jastine and confirmed that Honorary Consul Mark Congdon is set to meet with the family to discuss the assistance the Philippine government can provide. The Valdez family refused to grant an interview and requested privacy.

Meanwhile, Irish Lawmaker John Brady joined the vigil to express his condolences to the family and the Filipino community in Ireland.

“I think the entire Irish population is absolutely appalled by what happened. There is a real sense of loss, of tragedy within the community area…Just to show our support first to the Valdez family. We really feel a sense of loss as a community and secondly, to the entire Filipino community,” Brady said.

The investigation on the killing is still ongoing. – Cynthia Brul / Marje Pelayo

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Teddy Boy Locsin accepts Duterte’s offer for DFA chief

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Friday, October 12th, 2018


DAVAO CITY, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte on Friday (October 12) announced his offer to Teodoro “Teddy Boy” Locsin Jr. to be the new secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA).

The President made the announcement upon his arrival from a one-day travel to Indonesia to attend the ASEAN Leaders Gathering.

Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano previously announced his plans to run for Taguig Representatives in the 2019 mid-term elections.

Minutes after the announcement, Locsin on Twitter posted that he said “yes” to the position.

In another tweet, Locsin signified that he is up for the challenge as the new foreign affairs chief.

“I will be Secretary of Foreign Affairs which includes the UN; I will have a direct hand until the architecture of sovereign independence in all matters of state that my team started to erect is remitted. Talent that doesn’t exist outside DFA will complete it,” he said.

Locsin is the Philippines’ Permanent Ambassador to the United Nations. He was a former journalist, a lawyer and a politician. – Marje Pelayo

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UNTV EXCLUSIVE: Embassy officials to take action on 21 abandoned seafarers in India

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Monday, October 8th, 2018

21 Filipino seafarers abandoned by their shipping company for more than a hundred days at the port of Kakinada in India


PASAY CITY, Philippines – Vice Consul JB Santos will lead a team of Embassy officials in New Delhi on Thursday (October 11) to visit the 21 Filipino seafarers stranded and abandoned at Kakinada port in India.

The move is in response to the group’s request for rescue and assistance through the help of UNTV network.

The officials will check on the condition of the seafarers to assist them with the repatriation process.

Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary Elmer Cato on Friday said the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) will immediately take action on the matter.

After UNTV notified the DFA and aired the report, the group’s head Captain Alexander Apao said they were able to take a sigh of relief because their manning agency, Evic Human Resources Management, pressured by the report, immediately wired money or part of their four months’ withheld salary to their respective families in the Philippines.

“Noong Friday, nagpadala iyong manning agency ng pera remittance doon sa mga pamilya. Medyo nakahinga ng konti sa bayarin ang mga pamilya [namin]. Then by next week, mayroon daw silang ire-remit ulit equivalent to one month allotment,” said Apao.

When the UNTV News and Rescue Team visited the manning agency in Ermita, Manila, a representative confirmed that they already purchased plane tickets for the repatriation of the seafarers though they refused to be recorded on camera.

But according to Captain Apao, they have not been notified on the matter.

“Sa ngayon wala pang natanggap na balita tungkol doon sa ticket. Wala pang sinabi ang opisina kung may ticket na ba kami, kung kailan kami makakauwi. Basta ang information ko doon sa DFA pinaprocess nila yung repatriation,” he said.

The seafarers are crew members of MV Evangelia who were abandoned by the shipping company since October 2, 2018 after it went bankrupt. — Marje Pelayo (with reports from JL Asayo)

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DFA shortens waiting period for passport applications

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Thursday, September 27th, 2018

(File photo) Philippine passport and application form

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Foreign Affairs announced that beginning October 1, applicants who paid P950 processing fee can collect their passports at the DFA consular offices in Metro Manila within 12 working days, while those who paid P1,200 processing fee may pick up their passports within 6-7 days.

Applicants outside Metro Manila may collect their passports after 12 working days instead of the previous 20.

Those who availed the expedited processing may get their passports after 7 working days instead of 10.

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