OFW slain in Kuwait laid to rest


Posted at Mar 03 2018 04:16 PM | Updated as of Mar 03 2018 07:33 PM

The casket of Filipina domestic helper Joanna Demafelis is pictured here during a convoy before her burial on Saturday. Regi Adosto, ABS-CBN News

MANILA - The Filipina domestic worker whose death sparked public outrage on reported abuses against Filipinos working overseas was laid to rest Saturday.

Family and friends of Joanna Demafelis, all clad in white, cried for justice while the slain migrant worker was being interred at Virgin Island Cemetery in her hometown Sara, Iloilo 4 p.m. Saturday.

Before the burial, mourners wearing the shirt "Justice for Joanna Demafelis" filled the Sara Parish where a mass was held for the slain Filipina.

Several people also extended financial assistance to Demafelis' family.

"Para sa akin, sapat na ang tulong para sa amin. Maraming salamat sa lahat," Crisanto Demafelis, father of the slain Filipina, said.

He added that the family would use the money for the education of Demafelis' youngest sister Joyce, whose school expenses the slain Filipina had shouldered. 

The local government of Iloilo took care of Demafelis' burial expenses.

Demafelis, 29, was found in a freezer in an abandoned apartment in Kuwait early in February, more than a year since she last had contact with her family here in the Philippines. Investigation found signs of abuse.

Her death sparked public outcry over reported abuses against Filipino domestic workers in the Gulf state and prompted the Philippine government to halt the deployment of workers there.

Primary suspects in her murder are already in the custody of foreign authorities, the Philippine government earlier said.

Philippine officials are scheduled to meet with Kuwaiti representatives on Monday for negotiations as Manila presses for better protection of Filipino migrant workers in the Gulf state, where over 252,000 Filipinos are working, most of whom are domestic helpers.

-with a report from Regi Adosto, ABS-CBN News