Motorcycle-riding gunmen shot dead the mayor of Talitay, Maguindanao during an ambush in Malate, Manila on Monday night, the Manila Police District (MPD) said.
MPD investigators said the victim Mayor Abdulwahab Sabal sustained multiple gunshot wounds in the body causing his death.
Sabal was shot in front of the Mannra Hotel in Quirino Avenue, Malate, when the ambush happened, police said.
Investigators said, as soon as Sabal got off his vehicle in front of the hotel where he was about to check in, the gunmen shot the victim repeatedly then fled the scene.
The hotel’s glass door was shattered due to the commotion by the victim’s companions who tried to enter the establishment during the shooting incident.
MPD investigators are still investigating the motive behind the killing.
Sabal is among the alleged drug personalities in President Rodrigo Duterte’s first list of narcopoliticians and personalities with drug links released in August 2016.
Sabal was Talitay vice mayor when Duterte’s list was first made public.
Shortly after the release of the 2016 list, Sabal and seven other Maguindanao officials on the list – including his brother then-Talitay mayor Montasir Sabal – surrendered to police for investigation to disprove the drug allegations.
A month later, in September 2016, the Anti-Illegal Drug Group (AIDG) arrested him at the Cotabato Airport in Datu Odin Sinsuat town over drug trafficking charges, and brought to Manila where he underwent inquest proceedings at the Department of Justice for his alleged drug links.
Police also accused him of involvement in the Davao market blast that same month.
Authorities later said the Maute Group was behind the bombing./Stacy Ang