Statement of the DILG on ambush of Cebu Town Mayor

January 24, 2019

The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) condemns the ambuscade of San Fernando, Cebu Mayor Lakambini “Neneth” Reluya and her companions in Barangay Linao, Talisay City on Tuesday.

This latest attack on politicians is a huge affront to the efforts of the government to create an enabling and conducive environment where citizens should be able to freely exercise their right to choose leaders whom they think will steer their localities to peace and development.

President Duterte was succinct and clear when he said that political terrorism and violence should have no place in our country. I, therefore, order the Philippine National Police (PNP) to unmask the mastermind behind this ambush and ensure that he or she faces the full consequences of his or her dastardly act. I also reiterate my call to the PNP to further bolster their security measures in identified election hotspots by setting up checkpoints, maintaining police visibility, and strictly enforcing the gun ban.

To all the candidates, I urge you to play fair and refrain from using illegal means to clinch victory in the elections as the law will soon catch up with you.

I also call on the citizens to be on guard by reporting to the authorities any looming election-related violence in their areas so that the police will be able to act accordingly.

The Department extends its well-wishes to Mayor Reluya and her companions for a speedy recovery and expresses our deepest condolences to her as well on the passing of her husband and two others who were killed during the incident.