Shariff Aguak vice mayor who testified in Ampatuan Massacre survives ambush

Marje Pelayo

MANILA, Philippines – Shariff Aguak Vice Mayor Akmad Ampatuan is now in stable condition following an ambush along Sharif Aguak Highway in Maguindanao.

Ampatuan survived but his driver and his bodyguard died in the incident.

“Ongoing investigation ang ginagawa diyan (The investigation is ongoing),” noted Major Arvin John Encinas, spokesperson of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) West Mindanao Command.

“Mahirap na mag-speculate na hindi pa tapos ang investigation pero isa yan siya sa mga nag-witness against sa mga suspect doon sa Maguindanao massacre (We cannot speculate while investigation is ongoing but he is one of the witnesses against the suspects in the Maguindanao Masaacre,)” Encinas confirmed.

Despite being part of the powerful political clan of the Ampatuans in Maguindanao, Vice Mayor Akmad decided to testify against his kin in the brutal Ampatuan Massacre.

He took the side of the complainants and became an ally of the Mangudadatus.

Based on initial investigation, the victims were ambushed by about to two to three armed men.

According to Congressman Esmael ‘Toto’ Mangudadatu, a witness was able to recognize one of the gunmen.

“May nakita siya eh, nakilala nila (The witness saw recognized one of them),” Mangudadatu said in a phone interview adding that he has yet to talk to the said witness to confirm.

Mangudadatu flew to Davao City to visit the vice mayor in the hospital.

The ambush happened just five days after the verdict on the gruesome Ampatuan Massacre was released.

More than 40 of the accused were convicted, including the primary suspects Andal Jr. and Zaldy Ampatuan along other members of the Ampatuan family. – MNP (With inputs from Dante Amento)

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