Lazy eyes listen
Men armed with assault rifles and wearing military-style camouflage and bullet-proof vests assassinated the governor of Negros Oriental province in the southern Philippines. The shooting, the latest in a series of attacks on regional politicians, also killed five civilians.
According to police, at least six heavily armed gunmen wearing “pixelated uniforms” opened fire on Governor Roel Degamo in front of his house in Pamplona town on Saturday morning, killing him and five other victims. The civilians who were shot are said to be impoverished local villagers who had gathered in front of Degamo’s house to seek assistance.
The suspects fled the scene in three SUVs, which they later abandoned. Negros apprehended three men hours later.
“My government will not rest until the perpetrators of this heinous crime are brought to justice,” President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said in a statement.
Political violence, as well as Islamist and Communist rebellions, have a long history in the country. In the last month alone, Lanao del Sur governor Mamintal Alonto Adiong Jr. was wounded in a brazen attack that killed five of his bodyguards, and Maguindanao del Sur mayor Ohto Caumbo Montawal was shot at by two gunmen. In the northern Philippines, the vice mayor of Aparri town, Rommel Alameda, and his colleagues were gunned down by men wearing masks.
The slain governor, who took office in 2011, was ousted in an election last year but was reinstated after a recount in October. Only two weeks ago, the Supreme Cout backed election officials’ decision to overturn the result and give Degamo the votes cast for a spoiler candidate with the same surname.
Pamplona Mayor Janice Degamo said on Facebook that her husband was serving constituents on Saturday and “did not deserve that kind of death.”