Mass at sea marks 1st year of Cebu maritime disaster
At least 50 people on pump boats and outrigger canoes yesterday celebrated Mass in the waters off Lawis Ledge in Talisay City where at least 116 people drowned after a cargo ship collided with a passenger ferry on Aug. 16, 2013.
Fr. Patrick Medina officiated at the Mass in commemoration of the first anniversary of the collision between M/V St. Thomas Aquinas of 2Go and M/V Sulpicio Express Siete of Philippine Span Asia Carrier Corp. (formerly Sulpicio Lines Inc.).
Among those who attended the ceremony were Talisay City Mayor Johnny delos Reyes, Talisay Councilor Dannny Caballero and the fishermen who were among the first to respond to the distress calls that fateful night and rescued a number of passengers.
After the Mass, the group threw white flowers into the water and prayed for the repose of the souls of those who died.
The Express Siete, a cargo vessel, was bound for Davao City while the Aquinas, a passenger ferry, was heading into port in Cebu City when they collided around 9 p.m. of Aug. 16, 2013.
The ferry sank later with 20 tons of diesel oil and 120 tons of bunker oil. The sinking triggered a massive oil spill that polluted the coastline of the municipality of Cordova.
Last Thursday, the Cordova municipal government and some fisherfolk filed a case against 2Go and PSACC to compel them to pay P132 million for the complete rehabilitation of the town’s marine environment.
The fisherfolk also sought a separate payment of P81 million in damages to cover for their loss of livelihood caused by the oil spill.
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