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DMW Secretary Susan 'Toots' Ople dies

Department of Migrant Workers Secretary Susan "Toots" Ople passed on Tuesday.

In a statement, DMW spokesperson Toby Nebrida said Ople died at 1 p.m. today.

"It is with great sadness that the Department of Migrant Workers announces the passing of our dearest Secretary Susan “Toots” Ople. Secretary Toots peacefully joined our Creator at around 1 p.m. today, August 22, 2023 surrounded by her family and loved ones," he said.

He asked the public to pray for Ople as well as her family.

"For the meantime, we ask for prayers for the eternal repose of the soul of our dear Sec. Toots. We ask as well for prayers for the Ople family," he said.

President Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. mourned the death of Ople.

"It's a very very sad news. I have lost a friend. The Philippines has lost a friend. Secretary Ople is a special person with a deep compassion really really for the people that she had cared for, mainly the migrant workers," Marcos said.

"It's a big loss, ang galing galing ni [she's very good] Secretary Toots ... she very much followed in the tradition of the Blas Ople tradition of excellence, of compassion. It is a great loss for all of us, it is great loss for all of us who called her a friend, it is a great loss to the Philippines, to the service that we know she could still have rendered," he added.

In late July, Ople took a wellness break to grieve the passing of her two elder brothers, ex-Hagonoy mayor Felix "Toti" Ople and former journalist, Blas Ople Jr., who both succumbed to lung cancer. — AOL/RSJ, GMA Integrated News

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