CEBU, Philippines – The Cebu City Police Office will file criminal charges against the owner of the construction firm, employer of the five construction workers who died in last Tuesday’s tragedy in barangay Tisa.
Senior Supt. Patrocinio Comendador, director of CCPO, said even if the result of the investigation of the Office of the Building Official (OBO) is delayed, they will file the appropriate charges next week.
Comendador told reporters that they can press charges against the construction firm whether or not the families of the victims would file a case, because the incident is a public crime.
They are, however, looking forward of the result of the OBO investigation as such findings are vital in establishing possible charg es to be filed against Charles Yu Chiu, the owner of CYC Construction, which is building the mall owned by Gaisano Capital in the area.
Comendador said they will most possibly file a case of reckless imprudence resulting to multiple homicide and physical injuries against the construction firm owner.
The CCPO director said that they are also encouraging the families of the victims to file a case against the contractor.
He said that the filing of such cases would also bolster those that they would file.
The victims were working on the project a past midnight when a firewall collapsed and fell on them.
Four died on the spot while the fifth victim died at the Cebu City Medical Center. Six others were also injured in the incident.
Dole Issues Order
The Department of Labor and Employment in Region VII has issued a show cause order against CYC Construction on why the construction of the multi-million structure will not be entirely stopped.
DOLE regional director Elias Cayanong told The FREEMAN yesterday that he already issued the other day an order directing firm for the partial closure of the construction site.
Cayanong said that although the show cause order is directed to the contractor, but still the mall’s management is not yet off-the-hook as DOLE is still having its own separate investigation in order to determine who will be held liable so that proper charges can be filed.
Cayanong added that DOLE’s primary concern is the safety and protection of the workers in the workplace and by that they will also investigate reports that the construction workers were receiving wages that were below the minimum set by law.
He said that based on their preliminary investigation, they have not gotten yet the exact number of workers as it seems “the workers have no knowledge about it or simply refused to cooperate.”
“We will look into this complaint that the workers were underpaid. If later we will find out that they are underpaid, we will be filing separate charges against those who are liable,” Cayanong said.
Aside from the underpayment concerns, Cayanong said that his office will further investigate other labor standards violations committed by the construction firm or the mall management, should there be any.
“We will file separate charges against them, if we will find out that they are committing other labor violations,” Cayanong said. — /NLQ (FREEMAN NEWS)