Gunman killed in Cotabato City shootout

COTABATO CITY (MindaNews/16 January) – One of the gunmen who attacked Wednesday a purported “asset” of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao was killed, police said.

The fatality was identified as Asraf Bajunaid, 50, a resident of Cotabato City. He was found dead on the back seat of a Sedan wearing a hooded jacket, his face covered with a handkerchief.

Scene of the crime operatives examine the car used by the attackers who tried to kill Johnity Sapal Kubato, a purported CIDG asset, in Cotabato City on January 15, 2020. MindaNews photo by FERDINANDH B. CABRERA

Police said Bajunaid was with at least two other men. One managed to escape after the shootout while another one was wounded and brought to a hospital.

Bajunaid and his companions who were armed with .45 caliber pistols reportedly alighted from their car and opened fire at Johnity Sapal Kubato, who was aboard a motorcycle, on Rajah Tabunaway Street, Purok 6 in Cotabato City around 3:20pm on Wednesday.

Kubato, 39, a supposed CIDG asset, was hit in the buttocks and fell from his NMax big scooter.

He, however, managed to fire back resulting in a shootout that ended on Jose Lim Street.

One of the attackers identified as Suharto Kasim Panalangin was wounded and brought to a hospital. Another one fled unscathed.

A video posted on social media showed Panalangin unable to stand and asking help from bystanders.

Two empty .45 caliber pistols were found inside the car.

City police chief Colonel Portia Manalad said they are still trying to determine the background of Kubato and his attackers. (Ferdinandh B. Cabrera/MindaNews)