Duterte's mayoral bet survives slay try in Maguindanao | Inquirer News

Duterte’s mayoral bet survives slay try in Maguindanao

/ 09:29 PM April 13, 2016

COTABATO CITY  – A mayoral candidate under presidential candidate Rodrigo Duterte’s PDP-Laban party survived an assassination attempt in a remote village in Maguindanao Wednesday, police said.

Incumbent Vice Mayor Remegio Sioson of South Upi town, Maguindanao, escaped unhurt when a powerful improvised explosive device went off along a dirt road in Sitio Bolo, Barangay Pandan, at 2:30 p.m..

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But his three aides were injured. One of them is in serious condition.

Sioson, 58, a first-term vice mayor, is running for mayor under Duterte’s party, against seven others hopefuls in South Upi, an upland town inhabited mostly by indigenous Tedurays.

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Michael Bibaoco, Sioson’s private secretary, told the Philippine Daily Inquirer that the vice mayor was heading home after he visited the Maguindanao provincial health team that conducted a medical mission in Barangay Pandan.

Sioson was on board a Mitsubishi Strada vehicle with Bibaoco and supporters when the IED exploded, damaging the official’s vehicle.

“We called off our campaign activities on Tuesday and Wednesday.  We visited Barangay Pandan to see how the medical mission was going,” Bibaoco said.

Supt. Jibin Bongcayao, spokesperson of the Maguindanao police, said the improvised bomb was fashioned from a 60mm mortar with two-way radio as triggering device.

“We thank God we survived,” Bibaoco quoted Sioson as saying after the powerful blast. The mayor is safe and will not back off from his desire to serve the people of South Upi, according to Bibaoco.

“He considered the incident as another challenge in his political career,” Bibaoco said, adding that explosion was so loud and defeaning.

Bongayao identified the injured as Bibaoco, 30; Junito Venancio, 35; and Rommel Sioson, 34, the vice mayor’s relative. Venancio is Sioson’s close-in security.

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Venancio sustained shrapnel injuries in the right leg and was rushed to the Cotabato Regional and Medical Center while Bibaoco and Romel Sioson was wounded by shards from the broken car windshield.

It was the second attempt on Sioson’s life. On Nov. 30, 2013, he survived an ambush by still unidentified men along a highway in the boundary of Datu Odin Sinsuat and North Upi towns also in Maguindanao. His driver was injured and Sioson was unharmed.

Police are looking at several angles as possible motive.  SFM

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TAGS: 2016 elections, 2016 presidential election, assassination attempt, attempted murder, Bombing, Crime, crime victim, Election, Improvised explosive device, Jibin Bongcayao, Junito Venancio, local elections, Maguindanao, Maguindanao police, mayoral candidate, Michael Bibaoco, murder attempt, News, Partido Demokratiko Pilipino- Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban), Police, police investigation, Regions, Remegio Sioson, Rodrigo Duterte, Rommel Sioson, South Upi, South Upi municipal police, Superintendent Jibin Bongcayao, vice mayor
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