A FILIPINO seafarer returns home Wednesday to a tearful homecoming after spending eight years in jail for killing a compatriot in Saudi Arabia.
The 32-year old Jonard Langamin could not hold back his tears when he saw his weeping parents, Editha and Clemente, eagerly waiting for him at the Terminal 2 of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport. He was freed by the Saudi Arabian authorities after the surviving relatives of his victim, Robert Mendoza Jr., forgave him.
Susan Ople, an advocate of Overseas Filipino Workers, said Jonard and Robert were on board their ship cruising the Persian Gulf when the killing happened. She added the ship’s crew immediately turned over Jonard to the Saudi authorities.
Immediately, Jonard, was put behind bars and later sentenced to death by a Saudi court. However, the victim’s family in 2012 executed a formal letter of forgiveness known as Tanazul, Ople said.
Furthermore, Ople explained, Robert’s family gracefully extended forgiveness even when the agreed payment of blood money amounting to P4-million has not been completed. She added that only P2 million had been paid to the aggrieved family through the intercession of the Philippine government.
When asked about their plans, Jonard and his family said they plan to visit Robert’s family in Taguig to once again to seek forgiveness for the tragedy that took place eight years ago.