Reluya, who is seeking reelection in San Fernando against businessman Ruben Feliciano, expressed confidence the ongoing police investigation will bear good results.
Reluya dangles P2.2M reward
May B. Miasco, Mae Clydyl L. Avila (The Freeman) - February 22, 2019 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — Ambush survivor San Fernando Mayor Lakambini “Neneth” Reluya yesterday offered P2.2 million to any person who can provide information that will lead to the arrest of her attackers.

The van Reluya, her husband Ricardo, and four others were riding was peppered with bullets by assailants in Barangay Linao, Talisay City last January 22, instantly killing Ricardo and two others.

Clad in black tuxedo, Reluya spoke to reporters yesterday – a day shy before the harrowing ordeal turns one month – to announce that her close friends and relatives have raised the funds to hopefully fast-track the resolution of the case.

She said the monetary reward awaits anyone who can relay to the family vital information about the ambush. She also provided the hotline numbers: 09063157045, 09223427228, and 09394068325.

In an interview with tri-media personality Leo Lastimosa over dyAB earlier in the day, the mayor revealed she has yet to undergo surgery to remove a bullet lodged in her arm.

She said the doctor advised her to wait until the wound is healed before the bullet can be extracted.

Because of her condition, Reluya said, she is uncertain when she could return to her duties.

“We cannot tell when I will return as mayor kay naa pa man akong mga samad. Ang bala naa pa man sa akong lawas and sa pagkawala nako, ang uban mga samad na-heal na. Ang advice sa doctor, kinahanglan ipa-heal pa kung asa ang bala and i-schedule ko for operation sometime in March or April,” she said.

Reluya, who is seeking reelection in San Fernando against businessman Ruben Feliciano, expressed confidence the ongoing police investigation will bear good results.

Police earlier identified guns-for-hire Jerome Labitad and Felix Abacajan Jr. as suspects in the ambush. Both were identified by Reluya and Giovanni Jojo Perez, one of the mayor’s bodyguards who survived the attack.

Four other men who have yet to be identified are also being tracked down by the authorities.

But while the police have come up with the names, the question as to who masterminded the crime still begs.

With the reward, Reluya expressed confidence that the missing “link” can be found.

Saved by husband

Instead of losing enthusiasm, Reluya said her husband’s death fuels her to go on with her candidacy.

She said that amid the emotional and psychological struggle, she draws inspiration from her deceased husband, who had risked his life to save hers.

Recounting the incident, Reluya said her husband stretched out his arms and covered her as bullets pierced through the van that night. As a result, Ricardo received all the shots.

Reluya said that from the wake to the funeral she saw how her husband touched the hearts of many and influenced her life.

“I gained strength and inspiration from Nonoy (on how he exemplified true public service). I am even more motivated. I can see how he was able to help and influences lives of many. He did not only love us (family) but all of the San Fernando constituents,” she said.

“Nonoy does not only live within me but he lives with us. His mission will not stop because we will continue. We will continue his dreams for San Fernando,” she added.

Reluya is optimistic about her bid for another term, saying she has “many accomplishments” in San Fernando.

She said her camp has not discussed on who could substitute for her deceased husband, who was supposed to be her runningmate. (FREEMAN)

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