Hataman bewails death of ex-Abu men

BASILAN Rep. Mujiv Hataman has expressed grief over the death of three military assets, who were Abu Sayyaf returnees, during a raid by the Philippine National Police (PNP) and National Bureau of Investigation (NBI).

According to Hataman, there was no proper coordination with the Armed Forces of the Philippines when the PNP Special Action Force and NBI raided the house of one of the victims in the town of Hadji Muhammad Ajul, Basilan.

“The three military assets are returnees from Abu Sayyaf. Tinalikuran nila ang buhay bandido para bumalik sa kanilang mga komunidad at tumulong sa gobyerno. They are even helping us convince members of the Abu Sayyaf to surrender and live normal lives as citizens,” Hataman, the former Governor of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), said.

“And this incident comes at a time when the security situation in Basilan has greatly improved through the efforts of LGUs and security forces in the province. This will surely have an impact in our security campaign,” he added.

The legislator filed House Resolution No. 210 calling on the House Committee on Public Order and Safety to investigate what really happened last August 2, and to ascertain if there was a breakdown in coordination between the police and military agencies, with the goal of instituting legislative measures, if needed, to prevent such occurrences in the future.

“If there was no coordination, then we have a serious problem. Hindi pwedeng seek and destroy ang mentality ng civilian law enforcement agencies like PNP at NBI. Kailangan nilang alamin kung sino ang kalaban at sino ang hindi. They should have investigated and coordinated properly. It is a tragic loss that is both unnecessary and preventable,” Hataman stressed.

Last Friday, at around 3:30 a.m., a composite team of the PNP 84th Seaborne Special Action Force (SAF) and the NBI raided the house of a certain Aljan Mande in Sitio Kasanyangan, Barangay Candiis in Hadji Muhammad Ajul.

The raid resulted in the killing of Aljan Mande, Jamsid Mande and Radjak Ammah, all Abu Sayyaf returnees.

Before their deathsthey were under the Program Against Violent Extremism (PAVE) that Hataman, as ARMM Governor, instituted to fight terrorism and extremism.

The three then served as military assets and helped in curbing terrorism in Basilan by providing information on the whereabouts of the Abu Sayyaf Group. The victims even contacted ASG members to convince them to lay down their arms and surrender to the government.

With Jezreel Biscocho