By Calvin Cordova
CEBU CITY – A Cebu town mayor is offering a P2.2 million cash reward to anyone who can help identify the mastermind behind the ambush that killed her husband and their two companions.
San Fernando Mayor Lakambini Reluya said her family and friends helped her raise the money to hasten the identification of the mastermind of the Jan. 22 ambush in Talisay City.
Reluya survived the attack but her husband, Association of Barangay Councils President Nonoy Reluya, the van driver and the town’s tourism officer were killed.
In a press conference last Thursday, Reluya said she has no plans of withdrawing from the mayoral race.
“In the hands of wrong people, San Fernando will be in danger. I need to go back,” she said.
Reluya said it was impossible that no one saw the gunmen since the shooting happened on a busy street.
“There were many witnesses. Please help us resolve this case,” she said.
Reluya said politics could be behind the attack.
Her reelection bid is being challenged by businessman Ruben Feliciano.
Feliciano denied involvement in the ambush.
Shortly after Reluya’s press briefing, Feliciano announced a P 3.5-million reward for those who can provide information leading to the identification of the mastermind.
The mayor said information that will be given in relation to the case will be verified by the Special Investigation Task Force Reluya.
The police has filed multiple murder and multiple frustrated murder charges against suspected hitmen Jerome Labitad and Felix Abacajan Jr.
The charges were filed after several M-16 rounds that were recovered in their hideout during a police operation and matched the spent shells retrieved from the crime scene.
Last Jan. 29, police tried to serve an arrest warrant against Labitad in Barangay Campo 4 in Talisay but he and Abacajan escaped after shooting it out with the arresting team. (with USC Interns Clyde Piczon and Franz Pua)