3 injured in lone election-related violence in Davao region, as of Saturday

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 13 May) — Three persons were injured in a gunfight between supporters of rival candidates in Purok 3 Zunta Isla Verde, Barangay 23-C, Quezon Boulevard on Saturdaynight, two days before the May 14 Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan Elections.

Police Regional Officer (PRO) 11 spokesperson Chief Insp. Milgrace Driz said on Sundaythat it was the only election-related violent incident recorded in the region aside from a minor commotion in Banay-Banay, Davao Oriental.

A report released by Davao City Police Office (DCPO) on Saturdaysaid witnesses heard gunshots after supporters of the incumbent Barangay chairman Alemudin Usman engaged in a fistfight with supporters of opponent Amel Bangsa Mandin when heated argument escalated at around 7 p.m.

The injured were Alcon Camalia Ebrahim, 48, resident of Purok 4 Isla Verde, who was just passing during the incident, sustained a gunshot wound in his right arm; Alibaser M. Cabuntalan, 34, married, resident of Purok 2 Isla Verde and supporter of Manding, was shot his in his left foot; and Abdul Amar Asis, 29, married, resident of Purok 1 Isla Verde and supporter of Usman, survived a stabbed wound in his back.

Driz said the wounded have been discharged from the hospital but the police are still conducting a follow-up investigation in order to determine the suspect who fired the gun.

She added they have intensified their campaign against loose firearms and dismantling of private armed groups (PAGs) in accordance with the implementation of gun ban within the election period from April 14 until May 21, 2018

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) Resolution 10197 prohibits the bearing, carrying, and transporting of firearms and other deadly weapons and the availment or engagement of the services of security personnel or bodyguards within the election period from April 14 to May 21, 2018.

“During the election period, no person shall bear, carry or transport firearms or other deadly weapons in public places, including any building, street, park, private vehicle or public conveyance, even if licensed to carry the same, unless authorized in writing by the Commission,” it said.

The resolution added that only “regular members of the Philippine National Police, the Armed Forces of the Philippines and other law enforcement agencies of the Government who are duly deputized in writing by the Commission for election duty may be authorized to carry and possess firearms during the election period.”

But it added, “when in the possession of firearms, the deputized law enforcement officer must be: in full uniform showing clearly and legibly his name, rank and serial number, which shall remain visible at all times, and in the actual performance of his election duty in the specific area designated by the Commission.” (Antonio L. Colina IV / MindaNews)