Village councilor slain, 5 others hurt in grenade attack

Inspector Elias Dandan, chief of Pikit police, identified the fatality as Sandab Manan, 42, a councilor of Barangay Fort Pikit.

Injured were Alman Dalgan, 31; Lamalan Silongan, 54; Romeo Lumigas, 35; Dondon Acosta, 16; and El Yumar Buda, 31, younger brother of Barangay Fort Pikit chairman Elpidio Buda; and Omar Buda, an employee at the Commission on Elections municipal office.

Police said the victims were having a drinking session in front of Buda’s house when the grenade exploded right in their midst. 

Manan died while being treated at the Cruzado Medical Clinic in Pikit.  He died of multiple shrapnel injuries, doctors said. 

Dandan said the explosion was aimed at silencing Elpidio Buda. 

“We were told Buda has been receiving death threats since last week. The explosion could be work-related,” he said.

The police official said the explosion last Sunday was not connected to the March 4 discovery of an improvised explosive device at the Pikit public market. 

“The Sunday incident was work-related while the IED discovery on March 4 was due to extortion,” he explained. 

On March 4, a saleslady discovered in one corner of Filipinas Grocery Center a homemade bomb placed in a plastic bag. It was fashioned from an 81-mm mortar attached to a Nokia phone as triggering device.  

The storeowner told police she has been receiving extortion threats from a still unidentified group. (Malu Cadelina Manar/MindaNews)