Mayoral bet in Lantapan, Bukidnon shot dead


MALAYBALAY CITY (MindaNews / 07 May) —   One of two candidates for mayor in Lantapan town, Bukidnon was shot dead in front of his family members on Saturday.

Businessman Armando Lumapac Ceballos, 53, an Independent candidate, succumbed to a wound in his back, according to the spot report from the municipal police station.

The report said Ceballos was inside his residence in Barangay Balila when around 10 armed men aboard a cargo truck came at around 12:20 a.m. Saturday, ordered all persons inside the house to drop on the floor and then shot him.

The attackers took the victim’s .45 caliber pistol and cash amounting to P80,000, the report said quoting his family members.

Ceballos was rushed to the Polymedic Hospital in Malaybalay City but died shortly, it added.

Recovered at the crime scene were four cartridges of 5.56mm and one cartridge of 7.62mm ammunition, the kind used for M16 and M14 rifles, respectively.

The police report said that prior to the incident Ceballos and the group of his rival, incumbent Vice Mayor Ernie Devibar (Bukidnon Paglaum Party) held simultaneous rallies where a commotion ensued.

Incumbent Mayor Godofredo Balansag, who is supporting Devibar, reportedly went over to Ceballos’ and “created an incident” that irked Ceballos.

Balansag is on his last term and is not running for any position.

But police is yet to determine if politics was possibly behind the incident.

In a letter to the Regional Joint Security Control Center, lawyer Stalin Baguio, provincial director of the Commission on Elections and chair of the Provincial Joint Security Control Center recommended the deployment of additional soldiers and police officers in Lantapan.

The joint security control centers are bodies comprised of the Commission on Elections, Armed Forces of the Philippines and Philippine National Police. (H. Marcos C. Mordeno / MindaNews)