'Let the people decide,' says wife of ex-Cebu town mayor on Duterte ambush remarks

Joworski Alipon, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 18 2019 05:35 PM

CEBU CITY - The wife of former Daanbantayan, Cebu Mayor Vicente Loot on Wednesday said it is up to the people to decide how to interpret President Rodrigo Duterte's remark that he ordered the attack on her husband last year, which Malacañang later clarified.

Ma. Luisa Loot said it was presumed that the President was not behind the order to kill her husband since his spokesperson Salvador Panelo clarified Duterte's statement.

"Ang mga tawo lang ana padesisyuna oy. Basta mao man kaha na iyang gisulti. Unya, ingon man pud siya joke ra sad. So, ang mga tawo nalang ana maoy muhusga. Kay at this time, wala man ta mahimo kay Presidente man na siya," she told ABS-CBN News.

(Let the people decide. That's what he said. Then they said that it was only a joke. So, the public will judge. At this time, we can't do anything, he is the President.)

In a speech on Tuesday, Duterte had said in reference to Loot: "Inambush kita, animal ka, buhay pa rin.”

But Malacañang clarified that the President, who hails from Mindanao, had misspoken in Tagalog.

"What the President intended to say was: ‘Inambush ka na, buhay ka pa,'" Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said.

In May 2018, the former mayor was with his wife, children and grandchildren when a group of armed men attacked them.

The Loot couple and their family were unscathed, but their two drivers and a house help sustained gunshot wounds.

"Basta ako, sa akong mga anak ug akong mga apo, sus dili mapunit akong espiritu nako. May gani walay nadisgrasya," Loot said while recounting the unfortunate incident.

(It's a good thing that no one was hurt among my children and grandchildren, but I was startled.)

ABS-CBN News tried to contact former Mayor Vicente Loot but he has not responded.

The retired police official is allegedly included in the government's narco-list, or politicians linked to the drug trade, and has been named a protector of drug rings by Duterte himself.