Former UCCP pastor slain in Cotabato
GENERAL SANTOS CITY –– A former pastor of the protestant United Church of Christ in the Philippines (UCCP) was killed in Antipas, Cotabato Friday morning, police said.
Police Lt. Joven Alisasis, Antipas police chief, identified the victim as Ernesto Estrella, 51, married, a resident of Davao City.
Alisasis said Estrella was on his motorcycle going to the Poblacion from Barangay Magsaysay, where he visited his relatives when waylaid and shot point blank around 9 a.m. by one of two suspects aboard a motorcycle.
Estrella had been living for about a year now in Antipas, where his wife hails, Alisasis added.
Estrella was a UCCP pastor when he was residing in Arakan, another town in Cotabato, Alisasis further said.
Estrella’s relatives told the police that they did not know if he had enemies or received death threats.
During the May 13 midterm polls, Estrella campaigned for former Makilala mayor Rudy Caogdan, who won in Cotabato’s second congressional district, Alisasis noted.
Alisasis alleged that Estrella was affiliated with leftist groups.
“We are verifying information that he had been actively joining anti-government rallies in Kidapawan City,” Alisasis added.
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