(UPDATED) - Over six months after the tragic fire in New City Commercial Center (NCCC) Mall of Davao that claimed 38 people, another body was found on Wednesday morning, July 11, while demolition was ongoing.
Reicel Tobio, a non-uniformed police personnel of Talomo Police Station, said the body has not been identified as of Wednesday.
"The authorities could not yet give any update about this matter," Tobio said, adding that they were waiting for a family member or relative who lost someone to appear and file a report at the office.
NCCC Mall, in a statement, said the body was recovered from the mall's third floor.
"Upon validating with the contractor, we immediately secured the area and informed the Inter-agency Task Force and Bureau of Fire regarding this matter. The Bureau of Fire, Philippine National Police, and Scene of the Crime Operatives were on site last night for proper investigation and transfer of the body to a safe place," read the company's statement.
The Davao Regional Crime Laboratory Office, confirming the information, said the body is now at the Angel Funeral Homes for autopsy.
As of Thursday morning, July 12, authorities are focused on "ensuring the proper identification of the body and preserving the dignity of the deceased."
On December 23, 2017, fire broke out due to a high-temperature electrical discharge on the third floor, engulfing the homegrown mall in flames, killing 37 SSI Philippines, Inc. employees and one NCCC Mall Corp. employee.
READ: Fire continues to ravage Davao mall
In a report last June, Local Government Secretary Eduardo Año said a total of 31 persons may face criminal or administrative charges following the incident.
Año said prior to the incident, several renovations of the mall’s floors were made, rendering the sprinkler systems on the third and fourth floors non-functional and the fire escapes inaccessible. (with JPA, JCR, ICT/SunStar Davao)