Maguindanao governor, brother shot at while on chopper | Inquirer News
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Maguindanao governor, brother shot at while on chopper

/ 10:57 PM July 29, 2017
toto mangudadatu

Maguindanao Gov. Esmael Mangudadatu. (File photo from AP)

COTABATO CITY — Maguindanao Gov. Esmael “Toto” Mangudadatu and his brother survived an attack by an unidentified gunman, firing from the ground, while they on board a private helicopter on Saturday morning, police said.

Senior Supt. Agustin Tello, Maguindanao police director, said the helicopter carrying Mangudadatu; his brother, Mayor Freddie Mangudadatu of Mangudadatu town; and Capt. Dennis Figueroa, were flying over Datu Salibo town in Maguindanao when fired at by suspected Moro militants at past 10 a.m. Saturday.

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The governor was heading to the 6th Infantry Division headquarters where he would speak during the closing program of Youth Summit Against violent extremism.

PO2 Nassrolah Gani, officer in charge of Datu Salibo Municipal Police Stattion, said the helicopter was flying over Sitio Dagading, Barangay Tee, Datu Salibo, Maguindanao when shot by gunmen using automatic rifles.

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Tello said the attackers could be members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF).

“A bullet nearly hit my head,” Mangudadatu told reporters.

The private helicopter, owned by Aerworkz, had a bullet hole on its right glass window and was grounded at 6th ID helipad.

Mangudadatu was uncertain if the BIFF was behind the attempt to shoot down his chopper. He theorized the aircraft was mistaken as military air asset conducting surveillance operations in Datu Salibo.

Abu Misri Mama, speaking for the BIFF, would not confirm nor deny his group was behind the attack against Mangudadatu.

On Friday night, the BIFF set off a roadside improvised bomb in Raja Buayan, Maguindanao that left nine government forces injured. /atm

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TAGS: BIFF, Dennis Figueroa, Esmael Mangudadatu, Freddie Mangudadatu
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