September 15, 2023 Cristina Lee-Pisco 246 views

THE Juvenile Court in Kuwait convicted the killer of overseas Filipino worker Jullebee Ranara, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) announced Thursday evening.

Turki Ayed Al-Azmi was sentenced to 15 years imprisonment for the murder of 34-year-old Ranara.

He raped, killed and burned Ranara whose body was found in a desert near Al-Salmi Road on January 21.

An autopsy report conducted by the Kuwait authorities stated she was pregnant at the time of her death, according to Kuwaiti media.

Al-Azmi was also sentenced to one year imprisonment for driving without license.

The lesser penalties were due to the accused’s being a minor, the DFA said.

“The Department of Foreign Affairs wishes to inform the public that according to the Philippine Embassy in Kuwait, the Juvenile Court in Kuwait today CONVICTED the killer (Turki Ayed Al-Azmi) of OFW Jullebee Ranara, sentencing him to 15 years imprisonment for murder and 1 year imprisonment for driving without license,” the DFA said in a statement.

He has 30 days to appeal the judgement to the Court of First Instance, the Philippine Embassy in Kuwait said.

The family of the OFW has been informed and is grateful for the assistance provided them by the government.

“The Philippine government acknowledges the efforts undertaken by the Kuwaiti authorities to effect a speedy resolution of the case, in the pursuit of justice for our slain kababayan,” the DFA said.

Speaker Ferdinand Martin G. Romualdez welcomed the conviction of Ranara’s killer.

In a statement, Romualdez said this sends a positive message to all overseas Filipino workers (OFWs).

“We thank the authorities in Kuwait–from its police force to its court–for helping serve justice in the case of our kababayan, Jullebee Ranara,” Romualdez said.

“Her brutal killing shocked us to our core, especially the OFWs. This verdict goes a long way in assuaging their fears. All they want is to do decent work in order to build their families’ future,” the House leader added.

He then appealed to some Arab states to recognize and respect the OFWs, particularly the domestic helpers in helpin to keep together their foreign homes, help build their impressive edifices, and take care of their elderly and sick when nobody else is willing to.

The Speaker also thanked Philippine officials from the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), the Department of Migrant Workers (DMW), the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA), and other agencies for seeing the Ranara case through.

For his part, House Committee on Overseas Workers Affairs chair Kabayan Party-list Ron Salo said this is a significant milestone for justice and accountability.

“I laud the Kuwaiti government for their swift delivery of justice for the case of Jullebee. I commend the Kuwaiti courts for their commitment in upholding the rule of law and ensuring that justice prevails. This verdict sends a clear message that crimes against our Filipino migrant workers will not go unpunished,” Salo said.

“I also express my gratitude to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), the Department of Migrant Workers (DMW), the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA), and other government agencies involved for ensuring that the killer be held accountable for this gruesome crime,” Salo added.

Salo, however, also emphasizes that while this verdict is a positive step, there is still much that needs to be done to enhance the protection of our Filipino Migrant Workers. By Cristina Lee-Pisco and Jester Manalastas