NBI: Death of URC worker an open investigation

·2 min read

THE National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) will treat the death of a factory worker in Mandaue City as an open investigation.

NBI-Mandaue Agent-in-Charge Arnel Pura told SunStar Cebu on Thursday, June 9, 2022, that the wife of Stephen Corilla sought their assistance on Wednesday, to give justice to the latter who died on June 2, 2022 while cleaning a pulverizing machine that “accidentally” turned on at the Universal Robina Corp.’s (URC) Mandaue City plant.

“We have to establish whether his death resulted from intentional or unintentional incidence,” said Pura, adding that it will be determined whether it is homicide or murder during the course of investigation.

Pura said his office will coordinate with the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) in Central Visayas, the agency that ordered the temporary suspension of operations of a department at the URC and also fined them with P100,000 for violating Department Order 198, or an act strengthening the compliance of companies with occupational safety and health standards.

Labor inspectors reportedly found that the interlock safety device of the machine was defective, the reason why DOLE issued a cease and desist order on June 6, or four days after the death of Corilla.

The said URC department cannot return to its operations unless the alleged machine defect has been repaired.

Pura, however, said that while DOLE has established negligence on the part of the company, they still have to determine it themselves.

“Sa among part, we will treat that as an open investigation. We will not rely heavily on the reports coming from DOLE,” he said, citing the agency has no clear basis as to whom did they acquire those statements to support that there was indeed a negligence.

In a text message, Lieutenant Colonel Franco Rodulf Oriol, deputy director for operations of the Mandaue City Police Office (MCPO), said their investigation is still ongoing and gathering statements from the wife of Corilla and other people present during the incident.

Oriol further said investigators are also waiting for the autopay result and Scene of Crime Operations (SOCO) report to complete their investigation.

“We were informed that the URC is already reaching out to the family but we have no further details regading that dialoque. We are focused now to complete the process of investigation,” he added.

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