HE is listed in the list of missing, but co-workers were saying they saw him outside the mall when the fire broke out and the people inside were all asked to leave.
That he is missing was first brought to SunStar Davao's attention when a Sun.Star Davao Facebook follower named Hazel Gaa Taporoc commented on the update confirming that 36 bodies were recovered that, "missing ghapunakuangig. agaw #Melvin HayanaGaa. walasyanaapilsa 37 ngalistahan :( pray for them please :( ngaunta makit.an nailanglawas."
In a texted inquiry from Davao City Police Office chief Senior Superintendent Alexander C. Tagum acknowledged that they are still trying to locate one.
His texted reply read: "38 ang unaccounted before, pero recovered naang 37, we are now conducting an investigation on the last missing person." He confirmed that this "missing person" is Gaa.
In an earlier interview with Bureau of Fire Prevention Fire Superintendent Honey Fritz Alagano, fire marshal of Davao City Fire District, she said that they only have 37 in their list.
“Yong dalawa hindi confirmed. That is based on the mayor’s office. During the dialogue, it is only 37,” she said. The 39 list was based on the first day account, she said.
While Gaa's name was not in the first list released as the list was just of SSI employees missing, another list from the Davao City Government listed Gaa as "Melvin Ga-ang" and was number 19 in that list.
It was confirmed from inside sources at NCCC that Gaa is a regular employee of NCCC Mall, and that while co-employees said they saw him outside the mall as the fire raged on, his wife said he has not gone home nor can he be contacted.
The inside source asked not to be identified.
His motorcycle was also left parked at the mall lot even after the fire, a mall insider said.