Daraga mayor asks Duterte for help

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Daraga Mayor Albay Carlwyn Baldo allegedly hired six individuals to gun down mayoral candidate Rodel Batocabe and his security on December 22.

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, January 18) — Daraga, Albay Mayor Carlwyn Baldo, tagged as the mastermind in the killing of AKO BICOL party-list Rep. Rodel Batocabe, is appealing to President Rodrigo Duterte for help.

"Mr. President, humihingi po ako ng tulong sa patas at hustisya na kung ano po ang mga ina-accuse sa akin ay haharapin ko po ito nang buong-buo. Hinihiling ko rin po na sana wag pong malagay sa alanganin ang buhay ng aking pamilya," Baldo said in a press conference on Friday.

[Translation: Mr. President, I am asking for help for fairness and justice. I will fully face the accusations against me. I am also asking that my family's lives would not be put in harm's way.]

Asked about reports that a search warrant would be served on him, Baldo said he has not received any information about it, but if it is true, he just wants it to be done right.

"Tamang sistema lang. Baka ang kinakatakot ko ay may mahanap sila na droga o granada. Alam naman po natin na ang [possession ng] granada ay non-bailable [offense,]" he said.

[Translation: I just want the right process. I fear that they would find drugs and a grenade. We all known that possession of a grenade is a non-bailable offense.]

All six suspects in the slay of Batocabe and his police security aide have pointed to Baldo as the brains behind the crime, which he has repeatedly denied.

Police say they have strong evidence against Baldo, whose mayoralty bid for the midterm polls was challenged by Batocabe, a three-term congressman.

Duterte has threatened to slap Baldo if he threatens the Batocabe family or interferes in their political plans.

The late lawmaker's wife, Gertie, is being eyed as his replacement for the mayoralty race, while his son Justin, is the second nominee of AKO BICOL party-list for the 2019 polls.