There were at least 8 Filipino nationals who were trapped inside the CTV Building in Christchurch, New Zealand during the 6.3 magnitude earthquake that rocked the city last month. The following names were released by the Philippine government:
Ezra Mae Medalla, Jessie Lloyd Albarracin Redoble, John Chua, Jewel Francisco, Louise Amantillo, Valquin Bensurto, Ivy Cabanilas, and Rhea Sumagpong.
As of press time, rescue and recovery operations are in progress but there is still no official word on the condition of the Filipinos.
A more recent report from Manila said that 12 of its citizens were missing and could be trapped in collapsed buildings in quake-hit Christchurch. The Department of Foreign Affairs said the missing included five Filipino students reportedly trapped in the CTV building that collapsed and burned during the 6.3-magnitude earthquake that happened on Tuesday, February 22, 2011.
It also said that a team from the Philippine embassy in Wellington was on its way to Christchurch to investigate the reports and check on the condition of other Filipinos in the devastated city. Charge d’Affaires Giovanni Palec said there were 2,000 Filipinos living and working in New Zealand.