Police eye politics behind murder of village official, wife in Maguindanao del Norte
COTABATO CITY–Although the village elections are still months away, police in the Bangsamoro region suspect that violence linked to the upcoming electoral exercise is rearing its ugly head again.
This came as probers suspect politics to be behind the killing of a village official and his wife in Parang town, Maguindanao del Norte on Monday.
Abobakar Abdul, 40, village chair of Polloc, Parang town was on board a Toyota Hilux pickup with his wife Bainisa, 39; when they were ambushed by unidentified attackers 5:30 p.m. in the town’s Sitio Timbangan, Barangay Sarmiento.
Two men riding in tandem on motorbike overtook the Hilux pickup that Abdul was driving and opened fire, hitting the village official and his wife.
Abdul lost control of the steering wheel, causing his pick-up to hit a concrete electric post.
Both were declared dead at the hospital, where police rescuers brought their bodies.
On Wednesday, BARMM police formed a Special Investigation Task Group (SITG)-Abdul headed by Colonel Ruel Sermese, Maguindanao police director, to probe into the murder.
Police eyed politics
Maj. Christopher Cabugwang, Parang municipal police chief, said the murder could have something to do with the village elections this year, when Abdul was supposed to run for his second term.
Police also reported a commotion and a “misunderstanding” at the Commission on Elections (Comelec) office in the past weeks, regarding the registration of new voters for the village and Sangguniang Kabataan elections this year.
According to Cabugwang, Abdul frequented the voters’ registration to ensure that those who were coming to list up were bonafide residents of his village and not from other areas. “After supervising the registration of new voters in the village that day, Abdul went home,” Cabugwang said.
Brig. Gen. John Guyguyon, BARMM police regional director, said they hoped to probe deeper into the murder and for a thorough and swift identification of the suspects.
“This is such an appalling incident but this will not shake the peace and order in the municipality,” he said as he condemned the attack.
He assured the victims’ families that justice would be served and that the police “committed its law enforcement capabilities to to bring all those involved to justice,” he said.
“To the people of Maguindanao, your police are already on the ground to secure your safety, especially the constituents of Parang,” Guyguyon said.
Police found empty shells for caliber .45 pistol at the crime scene.
Parang Mayor Kahar Ibay has offered a P100,000 reward money to anyone who could provide information that would lead to the identification of the attackers and the brains behind the murder.
Barangay Polloc has a population of 6,093 based on 2020 census.
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