CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY (MindaNews / 19 Feb) — A bloody feud between two political clans in Lanao del Norte spilled over into this city Sunday afternoon where a gun battle erupted, killing three persons.
Killed were Mawei Batuintan alias “ Mawi Solaiman,” 28, an employee of Jabbar Marketing, an ukay-ukay store along Daumar Street, and two still unidentified gunmen.
Police Chief Inspector Gilbert Rollen, chief of the Cogon market police station believes the violent incident has something to do with the rido (clan feud) between the late Pantar, Lanao del Norte Mayor Mohammad Exchan Gabriel Limbona and his political opponent Magondaya Tago.
He said Jabbar Tago sought the help of the Cogon police two weeks ago claiming he received several death threats.
Jabbar, a nephew of Magondaya Tago, ran against Limbona but lost in the May 2016 elections.
Limbona was killed in an ambush in Sitio Paitan, Barangay Dalipuga in Iligan City on December 30, 2016.
The running feud between these political clans in Pantar town, Lanao del Norte spilled over into the streets of Cagayan de Oro near the Cogon public market.
Rollen said at least two gunmen and another suspect driving a red Honda XRM motorcycle approached Batuintan at the corner of Yacapin and Daumar streets Sunday afternoon.
He said the two gunmen pumped 18 caliber .45 bullets at Batuintan, killing him instantly.
Rollen said after killing Batuintan, the gunmen and their driver made a mistake by escaping towards the direction of Jabbar Marketing, an ukay-ukay store along Daumar Street.
“We believed Batuintan’s companions at the store fired at the gunman as they tried to flee,” Rollen said.
Rollen said when they interviewed those who were in the store, nobody came forward to say they saw the incident.
Batuintan was Jabbar’s store employee and nephew.
Cogon police investigator PO1 Neil de las Alas said Batuintan sustained 18 bullet wounds with the two gunmen emptying their caliber .45 pistols as he lay dead on the street corner.
De las Alas said the gunman who was wearing a blue shirt sustained 11 gunshot wounds while his driver sustained five gunshot wounds.
The two were found dead slumped over the red motorcycle a few meters in front of the ukay-ukay store.
A caliber .45 pistol with an empty magazine was found on the unidentified gunman who was wearing a blue tshirt, along with a spare single-stack caliber .45 ammunition clip from the left pocket of his denims, 200-peso bills and a 20-peso bill
The two gunmen carried no identification papers.
Forty three empty caliber .45 shells were found at the crime scene, proof of how violent the gunfight was, de las Alas said. (Froilan O. Gallardo / MindaNews)