4 LP coordinators wounded in Basilan explosion

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Lamitan City (Luis Liwanag)

By Mindanews and VERA Files

ZAMBOANGA CITY – Four Liberal Party (LP) coordinators were wounded when an improvised bomb exploded near the mayor’s house late Sunday evening in Lamitan City in Basilan, officials said.

Chief Inspector Almer Ismael, Lamitan City police chief, said the improvised bomb exploded 10 meters away from the perimeter fence of Mayor Roderick Furigay’s residence in Barangay Malinis 10 p.m. Sunday.

Furigay, who is serving his last term of office, is running for vice mayor under the LP banner. Furigay said he believed the target of the suspect is the LP headquarters, which is located on a lot adjacent to his residence, since they were having a meeting at the time of the incident.

Ismael said Furigay was having a meeting with 200 of his supporters when an unidentified man tossed an improvised explosive device (IED).

The bomb, however, hit on a tarpaulin and fell outside. The mayor said the suspect escaped under cover of darkness since “it was blackout during that time.”

Police identified the wounded as Melvin Tinguha, 22; Jay Ferrer, 29; Christopher Umbac, 30; and Joemar Ignacion, 20. Ismael said they are thoroughly investigating the case to ascertain the motive and unmask the suspect. He added that they are now waiting for the laboratory results to determine what type of explosive was used.

(ARMM WATCH is a project of VERA Files in partnership withMindaNews and I-Watch. It is supported by The Asia Foundation and Australian Agency for International Development. VERA Files is put out by veteran journalists taking a deeper look at current issues. Vera is Latin for “true.”)

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