Suspected BIFF members kill farmer in North Cotabato
MIDSAYAP, North Cotabato–A farmer was killed while his wife and two children, were injured when suspected members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) fired toward their house in Barangay Tumbras in Midsayap town, North Cotabato province on Thursday evening.
Franco Mantikayan, 40, a rice farmer and resident of Tumbras, was hit in the head and body when about five men fired on the family’s house around 8 p.m., town police chief Supt. Gilbert Tuzon said.
Injured were Mantikayan’s wife, Badria, 42; and the couple’s two children, aged 7 and 3. The wounded victims were now recuperating at a private hospital in Barangay Poblacion here.
Police investigators and soldiers who responded to the incident learned that all the victims were watching television when the attack took place, Tuzon said.
The perpetrators were led by Haron Mama Guiamalo, a sub-leader of the BIFF, who operated in the borders of Midsayap and Datu Piang in Maguindanao, Tuzon said, quoting a witness.
Mantikayan was a trusted aide of the late Tumbras chairman Mama Taha, whom Guimalo had a grudge with, the police chief said.
“The motive was personal grudge between the suspects and the victim,” Tuzon added.
He said charges of murder and frustrated murder were being prepared against Guimalo and his men, who have yet to be identified.
Guimalo acted on his own and the incident had no blessing from the BIFF leadership, Abu Misri Mama, speaking for the BIFF, said.
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