KIDAPAWAN CITY (MindaNews / 29 Aug) – Police hinted that the deadly bomb that exploded Tuesday night in Isulan, Sultan Kudarat was intended for Army personnel deployed along the Isulan-Tacurong highway.
Chief Insp. Celestino Daniel, of the Isulan PNP, said a military truck where several soldiers were onboard was the actual target of the improvised explosive device (IED) planted near the motorbike parked just in front of “ukay-ukay” (used clothing) stalls.
Daniel, in an interview with several media outlets, said he used as basis for his statement the information they gathered from the area.
But the suspects missed because they failed to trigger the bomb at the time the truck passed by along the highway, said the official.
Among those wounded during the blast were members of the Philippine Army, which included Master Sgt. Capilitan of the 39th Infantry Battalion, and Sgt. Timjar Hambali of the 33rd Infantry Battalion. Both were assigned as part of the augmentation force tasked to secure the town’s foundation anniversary celebration, according to Supt. Aldrin Gonzales, spokesperson for the Police Region Office (PRO) 12.
The Army has yet to issue a statement as regards the incident.
Aside from the Army, also deployed in the area were personnel from PRO-12.
Gonzales admitted they did not expect the bombing because of the tight security they employed since the opening of the week-long festivities.
“We had an augmentation. In fact, there were AFP personnel that kept watch. Unfortunately, despite the full deployment, we say, our enemies were able to penetrate the area,” said Gonzales in an interview over the Catholic-run DXND.
The blast killed two people, including a seven-year-old girl, and wounded 37 others, one of them still in critical condition, reports said.
Killed were identified as Devey Shane Alayon, 7, from Bagumbayan, Sultan Kudarat; and Leni Ombrog, 52, from Isulan, Sultan Kudarat. (Malu Cadelina Manar / MindaNews)