Gov. Adiong ambush suspect killed in police operation

An armed man believed to be among the suspects in the assassination attempt on Lanao del Sur Gov. Mamintal Alonto Adiong Jr. was killed in a police operation.

Speaking to reporters in Camp Crame, Quezon City on Wednesday, Feb. 22, Philippine National Police-Public Information Office (PNP-PIO) chief Col. Redrico Maranan identified the suspect as alias "Otin," the son of an alias "Fighter" who is among the five main suspects in the ambush.

Maranan said this was based on the report of Brig. Gen. John Guyguyon, director of the Police Regional Office in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region (PRO-BAR).

“Noong Feb. 18 ay nagkaroon ng resulta ‘yung hot-pursuit operation na ginagawa ng ating kapulisan sa PRO-BAR sa pangunguna ng ating regional director na si (Brig.) Gen. John Guyguyon at sa hot pursuit operation na ito ay nakasagupa ng mga elemento ng ating pambansang pulisya ang isang kinilala na isang alias Otin at ito ay base sa pagkilala ng mga testigo ay isa sa mga responsible sa pag-ambush kay Gov. Adiong (Last Feb. 18, a hot-pursuit operation was conducted by the PRO-BAR led by regional director, Gen. John Guyguyon. And in this operation, the cops encountered a person identified as an alias Otin and it is based on the identification of the witnesses that he is one of those responsible for the ambush of Gov. Adiong),” Maranan said.

Seized from the suspect was a Colt MK IV .45-caliber pistol with serial number 79234 loaded with six bullets.

PNP chief Gen. Rodolfo Azurin Jr. said an investigation is under way to determine the motive for the ambush, which includes a possible retaliation against the governor's crackdown on marijuana plantations in the province.

“We will continue investigating and determine the real motive of the ambush of Gov. Adiong. But we are very careful in investigating and looking at the possible persons of interest in order to ensure that we get the right persons,” said Azurin in a separate statement.

He also said PNP investigators are constantly monitoring and coordinating with the victims and their families to obtain their statements regarding the incident for the filing of appropriate criminal complaints.

"We condemn this senseless act of violence against our public servants. We assure the public that the PNP will exhaust all efforts to bring the perpetrators to justice. We stand in solidarity with the families of the victims, and we will not rest until those responsible are held accountable for their actions," said Azurin.

Adiong and one of his staff members were wounded while three of his security personnel were killed in the attack that took place in Maguing town, Lanao del Sur on Feb. 17. (PNA)