Death of Abu Rami is sort of bad news for some Sulu folk
ZAMBOANGA CITY – A Robinhood in Sulu is dead.
The death of Muammar Askali alias Abu Rami is, in a way, bad news for some communities in Sulu that had benefitted from the ransom money he got from kidnappings.
A source confirmed that it was Muammar Askali who was killed in Bohol.
“We knew him,” said the source, who claimed he knew Muammar since he was a student at the Notre Dame for Boys in Jolo town, but lost track of him when he entered college.
“We don’t know if he took up college in Sulu or somewhere else,” the source said.
Askali was a son of a policeman and a teacher in Jolo. He married a young woman whose family was known to be involved in kidnapping activities, the source added.
“He was not really identified as an Abu Sayyaf fighter. He was a leader of the Ajang-Ajang Group, a very notorious and extremist group that beheads captives,” he added.
The source added that he saw Askali last year in Blue Shark Hotel in Zamboanga City.
“And before this report about Bohol came out, we had several friends who sent Malaysian-made noodles to him, and advised him to leave the kidnapping and beheading,” the source said.
In previous phone interviews made by the Inquirer with Askali, he confirmed receiving P250 Million ransom for German couple Stefan Viktor Okonek and Henrike Dielen; P20 Million for the liberty of Filipina Maritess Flor; and P30 Million for Kjartan Sekkingstad.
But where does the ransom money go?
The source said Askali used part of the money “feeding communities.”
“They need the money to silence the community to get their loyalty. That’s how it works there in Sulu,” he said.
“And I guess he went to Bohol to get new captives,” he added.
The source said Askali and his group would not be bringing firearms with them if they went to Bohol for a vacation.