Filipina household service worker (HSW) Marilou Ranario who was sentenced to death by hanging on September 28, 2005 for stabbing to death her employer on January 11, 2005 and whose death sentence was commuted to life imprisonment by His Highness the Amir of Kuwait Sheikh Sabah Al- Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah on December 9, 2007 was finally freed and she flew back to the Philippines on Monday after over a decade of imprisonment at the Kuwait Central Jail in Sulaibiya. “I’m very happy, so happy. I can’t wait to be with my family and two kids,” stated Ranario while waiting for the boarding time at the Kuwait International Airport.
It may be recalled that the Kuwait Court of First Instance meted out a death verdict to Ranario for stabbing to death her employer Najat Mahmoud Faraj Mubarak. The Philippine government through the Philippine Embassy under the leadership of the Philippine Ambassador to Kuwait Ricardo Endaya hired a defense counsel for Ranario and exhausted all legal and diplomatic channels to save her from the gallows.
The Philippine government paid the victim’s relatives dia or blood money to obtain the ‘tanazul’ or letter of forgiveness from the victim’s relatives to save Ranario from death.
The Philippine government sent special presidential envoy former Philippine Vice-President Noli De Castro to Kuwait on March 6, 2006 to appeal Ranario’s case to H.H. the Amir and on December 9, 2007, former Philippine President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo flew to Kuwait to personally appeal to HH the Amir the commutation of Ranario’s death sentence to life imprisonment which H.H. the Amir granted on the day of Arroyo’s visit. “I would like to thank the Philippine Embassy for always visiting me in the jail and for providing me whatever I need. But above all, I want to thank His Highness the Amir of Kuwait for saving me and of course the ever merciful God,” stated Ranario.
The Philippine Embassy under the current leadership of Ambassador Renato Pedro Villa together with the Assistance to Nationals Unit team led by Consul General Atty Raul Dado and Vice Consul Atty Shiena Tesorero with the help of Kuwaiti authorities have made Ranario’s homecoming possible on Monday. Tesorero accompanied Ranario on her trip back to the Philippines. “This is one of our major cases. We are really very happy because all our efforts paid off and then the Ambassador instructed me to accompany her to the Philippines to ensure her safe return to her family.
Ambassador Villa is also very happy and wishes her the best in her second life and he hopes that she would have the second chance to rebuild her life with her family and two children,” pointed out Tesorero. Ranario expressed optimism that a new life awaits her in the Philippines with her family and kids. “I didn’t dream of something grandiose. All I wanted was a comfortable life for my family, for my two kids that’s why I came to Kuwait to work. As I return home today, I can’t wait to be with them. I will take care of them. I just want the best for my family. Look at me, how I sacrificed for my family,” she emphasized as she headed to the pre-departure area and thanked everyone who prayed for her and helped her during her stay in Kuwait.