By Jennifer P. Rendon
An outing of Iglesia Ni Cristo (INC) members turned into tragedy after two of them died while several others were wounded in a road crash at Nabas, Aklan late morning of Jan 2, 2023.
Police identified the victims as Monica Villanueva, 19, of Barangay Baybay, Makato, Aklan and two-year-old Ma. Cassandra Manansala of Barangay Ochando, New Washington, Aklan.
Both were declared dead on arrival at Ibajay District Hospital.
Captain Moonyen de Joseph, Nabas police chief, said there are seven persons who are confined to Dr. Rafael S. Tumbukon Memorial Hospital (DRSTMH) in Kalibo town.
Those who suffered minor injuries were discharged after getting treated.
The group of 28 people, including driver Raul Buiza, 54, of Ochando, New Washington, was on board a Mazda dropside utility vehicle (plate number HEC-3334) to Hurom-Hurom Cold Spring Resort in Barangay Laserna, Nabas, when the incident happened.
As they were passing through Barangay Nagustan, Buiza overtook another vehicle.
Shortly later, a loud explosion was heard. It turned out that one of the truck’s tires exploded.
According to reports, the group originally planned to go on an outing at the Malumpati Cold Spring and Tourist Resort in Pandan, Antique.
But they were turned back at the border after they were found to be carrying meat products.
Instead of canceling the trip, they decided to go to another cold spring in Nabas town.
Buiza was taken into police custody after the incident.