Father, 3 kids die in Maguindanao fire

Published July 10, 2018, 6:55 PM

by Roel Tibay

By Aaron Recuenco

A man and his three children died when they were reportedly trapped inside their burning house in Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao before dawn Tuesday.

Chief Supt. Graciano Mijares, director of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) regional police, said the bodies of the four victims were retrieved when the fire was put out almost an hour after the blaze started at around 2 a.m.

He identified the fatalities as Damus Araneta, and his three children Dagul, 7; Vina, 5; and Mujahid, 3.

Arson probers from the local Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) were investigating the case thoroughly over the reported testimonies from the neighbors of the victims in Sitio Niyog in Barangay Katuli that Araneta, himself, could have set off the fire when he tried to commit suicide.

The investigator, who requested for anonymity since the neighbors are yet to make an affidavit of their testimony, were reportedly claiming that the father nailed the door shut using to prevent his children from escaping the blaze.

The fire was reportedly started with kerosene.

The victim’s wife is reportedly working as a domestic worker abroad.

“The neighbors are claiming that his wife left him. Siguro naaburido,” the investigator said.

“During the retrieval, it looks like the father held his children very tight. But again these are yet to be verified including the use of kerosene,” the fire investigator added.