Six members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) were killed while nine were injured during an ambush by suspected members of the New People’s Army (NPA) in Calbiga, Samar on Tuesday morning (April 23).
Members of the 46 Infantry Battalion (46-IB) were ambushed around 2:50 a.m. with the use of an improvised explosive device (IED) or a landmine which exploded in the area between Barangay Daligan and Barangay Baluan.
According to initial information of 46-IB, they were conducting a community support program when suspected NPA members waylaid their troops.
The 46-IB added that the encounter between the AFP and suspected rebel group continues. — Aileen Cerrudo
The Philippine National Police (PNP) will look into illegal drugs as possible motive for the ambush on former Pangasinan governor Amado Espino Jr.
The PNP said they are looking into all possible motives for the attack which include Espino’s campaign against illegal drugs during his term.
“Ang lahat ng ito ay tinitingnan ng mga posibleng anggulo. Wala pa naman talagang matukoy kung ano talagang dahilan (We are looking at all possible angles. We still haven’t figure out the real motive),” according to PNP Spokesperson Bernard Banac.
“Maaaring may mga sindikato na maaaring naapektuhan ng kanyang kampanya na iyan (There may be crime syndicates that were affected by his campaign),” Banac added.
MANILA, Philippines – Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año on Friday ordered for the creation of a special police team investigation for the ambush on former Pangasinan Governor Amado Espino Jr.
In a statement, Año strongly condemned the “villainous act,” which he says “undermines the resolute efforts of our law enforcers to ensure peace and order.”
“I have already given specific instructions to the Philippine National Police (PNP) to immediately create a team to probe the incident and track down the culprits responsible for this crime,” he said.
Espino and four of his aides, namely Agapito Cuizon, Kevin Marfori, their driver and police security escort Staff Sergeant Jayson Malsi and retired policeman Anthony Columbino survived the ambush but another police escort, Staff Sergeant Richard Esguerra, died in the incident.
Año said police operatives are now scouring several areas in the province to track and arrest the gunmen. Investigators are also following possible leads on the motive behind the attack.
Police earlier reported its has recovered the getaway vehicles used by the suspects. A red Hyundai Elantra and a grey Ford Everest were found abandoned in Barangay Cobol and Barangay Pasima, respectively.
Several long firearms were also found inside the vehicles.
“We will give you updates on the results of the investigation by the police. We want to get to the bottom of this as soon as we can,” Año said.
The DILG Chief has expressed his condolences to the family of Staff Sergeant Esguerra and assured the government will provide them with special financial assistance package as well as other types of assistance for killed-in-action, wounded-in-action police officers under the Comprehensive Social Benefits Program.
Malacañang earlier condemned the ambush on Espino and vowed that the government will spare no effort in finding and bringing the perpetrators to justice.
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