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Nation

ARMM governor condemns Basilan roadside bombing

John Unson - Philstar.com

COTABATO CITY, Philippines - Gov. Mujiv Hataman of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) on Friday condemned the deadly roadside bombing in Isabela City in what could be the worst ever bombing in Basilan province using an improvised explosive.

Four were killed while 11 others were wounded in the incident.

Isabela City is under Administrative Region 9 but is located at one side of Basilan, an island province inside the territory of ARMM.

Hataman, chair of the inter-agency ARMM peace and order council, said he directed the region’s police director, Chief Superintendent Ronald Estilles, and Basilan’s police director, Senior Superintendent Oscar Nantes, to lead the investigation on the incident.

Investigators have initially theorized the bombing apparently targeted the convoy of Isabela City Vice Mayor Abdulbaki Ajibon, who survived the blast unscathed.

The explosion took place near the same spot as an earlier one, on May 31, 2012, also occurred where Ajibon also was the apparent target.

Three passengers of Ajibon’s pick-up truck, which was trailing the van he was riding, and a bystander was killed in Thursday’s bombing.

The attempt on Ajibon’s life came just three days after he announced over a local radio station that he will aspire for the mayoral seat of Isabela City during next year’s local polls.

The incumbent city mayor, Cherrylyn Santos-Akbar, will vacate the post on June 30 next year after completing a nine-year, three-term tenure.

Ajibon will be running against Jum Akbar, the incumbent governor of Basilan.

Gov. Akbar is one of four widows of the late Basilan Rep. Wahab Akbar.

The incumbent city mayor is also the late congressman’s widow. She will run for vice mayor of Isabela City next year since she is now on her third and last term as mayor.

Gov. Akbar is also on her last term. She will run in tandem with Cherrylyn as mayor and vice mayor of Isabela City, respectively, in the May 2016 elections.

ACIRC

ADMINISTRATIVE REGION

AJIBON

AKBAR

BASILAN

BASILAN REP

CHERRYLYN SANTOS-AKBAR

CHIEF SUPERINTENDENT RONALD ESTILLES

CITY

ISABELA CITY

ISABELA CITY VICE MAYOR ABDULBAKI AJIBON

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