By Minka Klaudia Tiangco
Two people, one of them a homeless man, were found dead in Manila on Tuesday.
According to a report, Richard Dagami, 57, scavenger, was found lifeless along Road 12 corner Anonas Street at Barangay 628 in Sta. Mesa at about 6 a.m.
About 20 minutes later, the body of Narcisco Nepomuceno, 50, stevedore, resident of Binondo, Manila, was also discovered in a cargo hold at a vessel at the Manila Harbour Center in Tondo.
On Sunday, another homeless person identified by police as “Mario,” about 65 to 77 years old, was also found dead along Atlanta Street corner 15th street at Barangay 651, Zone 68 at Port Area at about 6:10 a.m.
Investigation showed that some bystanders tried to wake him up to give him food to eat but were shocked when they realized that the victim was already dead. Cursory investigation showed that he did not have any external injuries.
Capt. Henry Navarro, MPD Homicide chief, said the fatalities did not display any symptoms of the coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) before they passed away and said this should not be a cause of panic among residents.
Despite this, the MPD official said they recommended the immediate cremation of the fatalities. He also admitted that they have not tested the victims.
“In as much as we wanted to test them, eh ‘yung buhay nga, wala pang pang-test (even the ones who are alive cannot undergo tests),” he said.
“Ngayon, ang protocol na idini-discourage ang pag-embalm. Sa kanila, direct cremation. Depende sa pamilya pero ‘yun ang sinu-suggest (Now, our protocol is that we discourage the embalmment of the victims. They should be directly cremated. It still depends on the family, but that’s what we suggest),” he added.