Slain mayor's rivals: Spare us

By Raymund Catindig and Charlie Lagasca, The Philippine Star

Posted at Jan 26 2013 08:21 AM | Updated as of Jan 26 2013 04:21 PM

ILAGAN CITY, Philippines – The family of slain mayor Francisco Talosig of Maconacon, Isabela appealed to the public yesterday to spare them from being dragged into the murder of his successor, Mayor Erlinda Domingo.

Talosig’s son Royle Gordon said the imputation that their family has something to do with the assassination of Domingo in Quezon City last Tuesday is absurd.

Domingo was gunned down by alleged hired killers outside the Park Villa apartelle in Brgy. West Triangle, two blocks away from the family home of President Aquino, as she was getting out of her vehicle.

The Quezon City Prosecutor’s Office has recommended the filing of murder charges against suspects Christian Pajenado, Michael Domingo and Mary Grace Abduhadi, wife of alleged gunman Marsibal Abduhadi.

They were also charged with attempted murder for the wounding of her driver-bodyguard, Bernard Plasos.

After the elder Talosig was killed in May 2009, Domingo, then vice mayor, assumed the mayor’s post.

The younger Talosig said they still have a long way to go in identifying the mastermind of his father’s still unsolved murder, but they could not avoid incriminating Domingo as one of the suspects. Talosig said Domingo never showed up during his father’s wake in Cabagan.

Aside from the Talosigs, police are also eyeing Domingo’s lone political rival in the May 2013 elections, Walter Abdul Villanueva, who is widely believed to be endorsed by the Talosig family.

But according to Maconacon chief of police Inspector Loreto Infante, Villanueva could not be located.

For his part, Talosig, who practices in a hospital in the adjacent town of Sta. Maria, said they “have not seen or heard of Villanueva since the 2010 local elections.”

After losing to Domingo in the 2010 elections, Talosig and his family left the isolated coastal town of Maconacon and settled in Cabagan, Isabela where their mother Purisima works as a supervising nurse at the Milagros Albano District Hospital.

Talosig garnered 900 votes against Domingo’s 991 and could have won by nine votes had Villanueva’s 100 been counted in his favor. – Reinir Padua, Janvic Mateo