SIOCON, ZAMBOANGA DEL NORTE - A town's vice mayor and his two other companions were killed in an ambush perpetrated by five unidentified suspects armed with high-caliber firearms, Saturday morning (January 11,2020), at around 11:20 in Siocon town this province.
Police investigators identified those who died as Baliguian Vice Mayor Gani Esmali; PCorporal Godelito Bongcac, a member of the PNP; and a certain Jaymalin Jalabi Tunggal. One of mayor's escorts, Abduladjid Ibno Bairula, survived the ambush but was in a very critical condition in a hospital, the police probers reported.
Initial investigation disclosed that while Vice Mayor Esmali and three other companions were negotiating a road in sitio Barazon, Barangay Sta Maria, Siocon town, five unidentified suspects suddenly alighted from the crime scene and without provocation peppered the vice mayor's vehicle with bullets.
The gunmen, after the ambush immediately fled from the crime scene on board a grey Toyota Hilux vehicle towards Baliguian town.
The Siocon town police claimed the suspects were armed with undetermined high-powered firearms when they ambushed the vice mayor and his three other companions.
Police investigators are still looking into the possibility that the ambush was politically-motivated, but admitted they are still 'facing a blank wall' as to the real motive of the suspects in killing the vice mayor and his escorts.
Responding police operatives recovered from the ambush site an M16 rifle with 49 cartridges and also an aluminum magazine loaded with 18 bullets.
Police investigators are now pushing for the thorough investigation of the case to identify the perpetrators and whoever masterminded the reported ambush.
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