Nueva Ecija town mayor shot dead

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, July 3) — Another town mayor was shot dead Tuesday, this time in Nueva Ecija, three hours north of Manila.

According to the police report, Mayor Ferdinand Bote of Gen. Tinio in Nueva Ecija was shot dead in Cabanatuan City about 4:50 p.m. by a still unidentified motorcycle-riding suspect.

It added Bote was on board his beige Toyota Fortuner when the gunman fired multiple shots, hitting the town mayor in different body parts.

He was declared dead on arrival at the MV Gallego Hospital.

 

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said Police chief Dir. Gen. Oscar Albayalde will conduct a "fair and thorough investigation" on the incident.

"We assure everyone that we would discharge the state obligation for every murder.  We will spare no effort in getting to the bottom of this latest violent crime," Roque said.

Police Regional Office 3 Director PCSupt. Amador Corpus said they condemn the mayor’s killing.

“While we give importance to all cases, this particular incident will be treated as top priority since a local chief executive is involved. We extend our deepest condolences to the late Mayor Bote's family and we continue to solicit public support,” Corpus said.

He also said he has ordered an in-depth probe on the incident and will look into all possible motives.

“We are exerting all means to get into the bottom of this unfortunate incident and we are now in the process of gathering pieces of evidence that will lead us to the identification of the culprit,” Corpus said.

Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency Chief Aaron Aquino said Bote was not part of the agency's drug watchlist.

Bote's death happened a day after an assassin's bullet felled Mayor Antonio Halili of Tanauan City in Batangas province, south of Manila, during flag-raising rites.

Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said he has ordered the National Bureau of Investigation to look into the killing of the two mayors.

Aquino said Halili has been on the agency's drug watchlist since 2016. The mayor's family said the administration was fed with the wrong information.