Army to deploy more troops at Zamboanga-Pagadian highway

ZAMBOANGA CITY (MindaNews/07 April) – The 102nd Infantry Brigade will augment the troops tasked to help the police secure the Zamboanga-Pagadian Highway that serves as the main link of Zamboanga Peninsula to other regions of Mindanao.


Brigade commander Col. Santiago Baluyut said he will set up additional detachments as well as checkpoints to deter lawless elements from committing atrocities along the highway especially in Tungawan town, Zamboanga Sibugay province.


An Army officer, his wife and a militiaman bus marshal were killed last Tuesday night when four gunmen robbed an inter-provincial passenger bus along the highway in Tungawan.


The victims were on board a Rural Transit of Mindanao Inc. (RTMI) bus with body number 9342 driven by Crispin Lozada bound for Zamboanga City from Pagadian City, the capital of Zamboanga del Sur.


The bus was negotiating the highway along barangay Upper Tungawan in Tungawan when the suspects declared the heist.


Baluyut admitted that there are “many vacuum areas” along the highway especially in Tungawan.


He said he will confer with the police for a coordinated effort in ensuring safe travel along the Zamboanga-Pagadian highway.


Baluyut, whose command is based in Ipil, the capital of Zamboanga Sibugay, said intelligence operations will likewise be intensified.


He, however, said they still need the support of the community by way of providing information about the presence of lawless elements in the Zamboanga-Pagadian highway. (MindaNews)