Ampatuan massacre witness survives ambush

SHARIFF AGUAK, Maguindanao (MindaNews/11 December) — A former mayor of a Maguindanao town and two of his companions were wounded after his convoy was ambushed at the boundary of Guindulungan and Talayan towns on Wednesday afternoon.

Akmad Ampatuan, former mayor of Datu Salibo town and two others were injured when several armed men who had apparently waited for their arrival fired at them at around 3 p.m.

Ampatuan has turned witness against his own relatives who have been charged as masterminds in the Nov. 23, 2009 massacre of 58 people in Sitio Masalay, Barangay Salman, Ampatuan town in Maguindanao.

The suspected masterminds include former Maguindanao governor Andal Ampatuan Sr. and his sons Andal Jr., former mayor of Datu Unsay town, and Zaldy, former governor of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

Ampatuan came from Cotabato City and was on his way to Shariff Aguak when he was ambushed. He was reportedly onboard a black pick-up followed by another vehicle of escorts.

His escorts fired back resulting in an exchange of gunfire that lasted a few minutes.

Ampatuan was evacuated from the scene and rushed to Shariff Aguak Hospital.

Ampatuan is the father of Shariff Aguak officer-in-charge Maroph Ampatuan and a nephew of Andal Sr. (Ferdinandh B. Cabrera/MindaNews)