MANILA- The management of Resorts World Manila has denied allegations of security lapses on their part after a gunman went on a shooting rampage and burned casino tables, causing a fire which killed 36 people on Friday.
Stephen Reilly, chief operating officer of Resorts World Manila, explained Friday that only security personnel who are outside the building are allowed to carry firearms.
He said the casino guards "did not engage" the suspect to avoid escalating the incident.
"They did not engage because it was seen that that would escalate the situation. Unfortunately, the situation did escalate a bit further...," Reilly told reporters.
"We had an armed intruder who entered into the property. He fired his firearm, he was in combat attire. Security inside the premises do not carry firearms, only outside the premises," he added.
Philippine National Police chief Director General Ronald Dela Rosa earlier blamed "lapses in security" of Resorts World for the attack.
"Nakapasok, nakapagdala ng armalite, dapat nakipag barilan na ang mga guwardiya," Dela Rosa told reporters.
Thirty-six bodies were recovered in at least two floors of the casino complex.
The suspect later committed suicide.
Reilly also clarified that the casualties were suffocated by the smoke from the fire as he defended the fire safety equipment of the resort complex.
"For the fire safety, our fire safety equipment worked as it should do. Our sprinkler system activated, the issue we actually had was with smoke, not with fire. Unfortunately, those victims suffered from smoke inhalation," he said, adding that there was also "proper ventilation" inside the building.
"There is proper ventilation within the property. Unfortunately, a lot of it, I think, was a degree of panic which I truly understand," he said.
The management of the casino complex has assured that it would provide assistance to families of the victims.