Thursday, 16 February 2017 13:11
A passenger bus with thirty-five passengers was ambushed by an unidentified armed group along Kilometer 58, Barangay Buenavista, this city, on Valentine’s Day.
Police Station 2 Commander, Chief Inspector Ramon Bautista, Jr. revealed that the suspects positioned themselves on both sidesof the road and sprayed with bullets the Rural Transit Mindanao, Incorporated (RTMI) bus bearing plate number JVH-447, driven by Celodonio Sugabo y Yapac, of San Pedro, Pagadian City, Zamboanga del Sur (ZDS).
Bautista identified the eight passengerswounded in the attack as Christopher Lumawan y Caigan, 27, a resident of Bolungisan, Imelda Municipality, ZDS; Ednalin Gella y Jaim, 20, a resident of Dumalinao Municipality, ZDS; Jaman Suradi y Alam, 53, a member of the Philippine Army, anda resident of Barangay Sta. Barbara, Zamboanga City (ZC); George Elnas y Sinafica, 32, a resident of Barangay Recodo, ZC; Reniel Abong y Endino, 24; Lopes Noel y Teña, 46, a resident of Tungawan Municipality, Zamboanga Sibugay (ZS); JenevieTeña y Lopes, 36, a resident of Kabasalan Municipality; ZS and John Baynosa y Recosasa, 36, a resident of Siparoc, Jose Dalman Municipality, Zamboanga del Norte. Bautista said 27 other passengers escaped unharmed.
He added that the wounded passengers were rushed to Quiniput Emergency Hospital and later transferred to Zamboanga City Medical Center (ZCMC).
Reports reaching Zamboanga Today show that the Pagadian City bound passenger bus left the Integrated Bus Terminal in Barangay Divisoria at about 11:00 in the evening.
Upon reaching Kilometer 58 in Buenavista, they were fired upon by the suspects who were allegedly armed with M16 Armalite Rifles as evidenced by the spent shells recovered by the Scene of the Crime Operatives (SOCO) in the area.
The bus driver told police that they were traversing the said area when he heard successive automatic gun fire. He said he did not stop the bus until they reached a military check point where they asked for help.
Bautista said they are looking into extortion as the possible motive of the incident. (Eugene A. Lasprilla)
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