More checkpoints set up in aftermath of ambushes in Maguindanao

COTABATO CITY – More police checkpoints were set up in several places in Maguindanao following the ambush-slay of an employee of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH)-Region 12 in Datu Odin Sinsuat town on Monday, January 11.

(Photo courtesy of Brigada News FM Cotabato / PNA)

“This is to put an end to the rash of highway shooting incidents in the province recently,” Col. Donald Madamba, Maguindanao police director, said in a media interview here on Tuesday, January 12.

Gunmen onboard a motorbike trailed and fired at Apinton Ibrahim, an engineering assistant in DPWH-12, while the latter was driving vehicle along Barangay Pinguiaman around 11 a.m. Monday.

“The victim died on the spot,” Maj. Rommel dela Vega, Datu Odin Sinsuat town police chief, said.

Witnesses said the gunmen sped off toward an unknown direction following the shooting.

"We have yet to establish the motive of the killing and the people behind it,” dela Vega said.

On January 6, motorcycle riding-in-tandem suspects also shot dead in Barangay Simuay, Sultan Kudarat town, P/Cpl. Mark Tendero, 24, while he was on his way home to Libungan town in North Cotabato.

On December 29 last year, riding-in-tandem gunmen also fired upon Army Cpl. Rosendo Oplino of the 37th Infantry Battalion as he was passing through Barangay Gang, also of Sultan Kudarat town, on board his motorcycle, going to this city from his home in Alamada, North Cotabato.

Oplino died while undergoing treatment at the hospital.

Madamba said the additional checkpoints, most of which are established along the national highway traversing the province, will stay until the string of road shootings stop.

“The checkpoints will keep on even at night,” he said.