MANILA, Philippines — The National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) said it has no lead yet in the killing of Maguindanao mayor Abdul Wahab Sabal in Manila Monday, but cites possible motives for the killing.
Sabal, 45, the mayor of the municipality of Sultan Sumagka, formerly known as Talitay, was gunned down around 10 p.m. outside a hotel in Malate, Manila Monday night.
NCRPO acting chief Gen. Debold Sinas said the only evidence that police has on the killing were the empty bullet shells, a CCTV footage, and the cadaver of the mayor himself.
The CCTV footage, Sinas said, barely holds a clue as it only showed the perpetrator who was wearing a helmet.
The police are looking into three possible motives behind the killing: clan feud, politics, and illegal drugs.
Clan feud was also being eyed as motive in slay of Sabal.
“As of now, we don’t have persons of interest, but we’re looking on several motives that we are coordinating with the family,” Sinas said in a press conference in Kamuning Police Station 10.
The police have formed a special investigation task group called “Sabal” to investigate the killing, Sinas said.
Sabal was included in the “narcolist” that President Rodrigo Duterte bared on March last year.
In September 2016, Sabal, who was then the town vice mayor, was arrested by the then Anti-Illegal Drugs Group of the Philippine National Police (PNP) as he stepped out of the Awang Airport in Datu Odin Sinsuat town.
Sabal and his elder brother, former Talitay Mayor Montasir Sabal, initially surrendered to the local police for fear of their lives after they were tagged by Duterte as narco-politicians, or politicians involved in the illegal drug trade, in August that year.
On top of this, the Sabal brothers were linked to the Davao City night market blast on September 2, 2016 that killed 14 people and wounded at least 70 others. Both had denied this allegation.
Edited by EDV
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