Cotabato City mayor's top aide shot dead
MANILA, Philippines – A top aide of Cotabato City Mayor Cynthia Guiani-Sayadi was shot dead on Monday, May 25, Mindanews reported.
Aniceto “Boy” Rasalan was Guiani-Sayadi’s executive secretary and spokesperson since 2016. He was 58.
A Rasalan family member told Mindanews that Rasalan was having breakfast at the Se Hua eatery at around 7:30am when he was shot in the head and torso.
The eatery is located along the corner of Notre Dame Avenue. Investigators found six slugs of .45 caliber pistols at the crime scene and are now reviewing CCTV cameras in the area, Mindanews added.
Rolen Balquin, Cotabato City Public Safety Office chief, said that 2 motorcycle riding men shot the victim who was declared dead on arrival at the Cotabato Regional and Medical Center.
In 2015, Rasalan survived an ambush where he was shot in face while driving himself to work, Mindanews said.
Rasalan was a former newspaper and broadcaster before becoming active in local politics in 2013. Police are still looking into the motive of Rasalan’s murder.
In January 2019, unidentified suspects threw at least one grenade inside the enclosed Cotabato City home of Rasalan's brother, Maguindanao Municipal Trial Court Judge Angelito Rasalan, on the eve of the plebiscite for the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL) .
Then Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Director General Oscar Albayalde said that the attack was fueled by a personal grudge and had nothing to do with the plebiscite.
Guiani-Sayadi had campaigned against the inclusion of Cotabato City in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM). – Rappler.com