Erap sets HK trip to apologize

Posted at 04/13/14 11:20 AM

MANILA, Philippines - Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada will leave for Hong Kong after the Holy Week to personally apologize to Hong Kong officials for the 2010 hostage crisis.

“I don’t have the exact date yet. But maybe after Holy Week, I will go there. It will just be an overnight trip,” Estrada said in a telephone interview with The STAR.

He did not discuss other details of his trip except to confirm that it pertains to his effort to appease Hong Kong officials, who had been demanding an apology from the Philippine government for the hostage-taking at the Quirino grandstand, in which eight tourists from Hong Kong were killed.

“We need them, more than they need us. I am just after the interest and welfare of our overseas Filipino workers,” he said, noting that there are more than 160,000 OFWs working in the former British colony.

Estrada fears that the Hong Kong government will not extend the visas of the OFWs.

The city council of Manila earlier approved a resolution designating Estrada to represent the city government in making the apology to Hong Kong authorities for the 2010 hostage crisis.

Estrada said he is doing what his predecessor, Alfredo Lim, failed to do.