Maguindanao massacre key witness hurt in South Cotabato ambush

Mike Navallo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jun 03 2020 01:03 PM

MANILA - A key witness in the Maguindanao massacre trial was ambushed in South Cotabato Wednesday morning, according to private prosecutor Nena Santos, the lawyer of some of the massacre victims.

Santos said Mohamad Sangki was on the way to the airport from Tacurong City with a driver and a security from the Witness Protection Program of the Department of Justice when they were shot by unidentified gunmen in Tantangan town in South Cotabato.

Mohamad did not have gun shot wounds but sustained body injuries due to the impact of the vehicle hitting 2 cottages.

But his driver, according to Santos, is critical. "The driver is 50/50 but prognosis is bad."

Both are now in a hospital in Koronadal City.

Santos said the WPP security aide was able to fire back at the gunmen who were able to run away. Police are currently pursuing them.

"Very bold na ang gustong pumatay kay Mohamad...daylight and with DOJ WPP security pa," she said.

Sangki was among those acquitted in the Maguindanao massacre trial which ended in December 2019. He is currently a witness for the second Maguindanao massacre complaint pending before the DOJ.

Sangki said he was given money and ordered by Andal "Datu Unsay" Ampatuan, Jr. to gather his men to monitor Kauran Bridge and kill gubernatorial rival Esmael "Toto" Mangudadatu should they pass by that bridge in November 2009.

It was not Mangudadatu but his wife, sister, relatives, supporters and some journalists who ended up getting killed in an ambush in Ampatuan town in Maguindanao on Nov. 23, 2009.

A total of 43 accused were convicted and 56 were acquitted last December.

Mohamad survived another ambush attempt in March this year, just a few meters away from the provincial police headquarters in Sharif Aguak, Maguindanao, without sustaining any gunshot wound.