‘Solve Reluya case in 2 weeks or be sacked’ ultimatum against CPPO, Talisay police chiefs voided

By: Morexette Marie B. Erram February 09,2019 - 05:40 PM

Director General Oscar Albayalde, Philippine National Police chief, says he is satisfied with the progress of the investigation of the ambush of Mayor Lakambini Reluya last January 22. | Inquirer.net file photo

CEBU CITY, Philippines — The chiefs of the Cebu Provincial Police Office (CPPO) and Talisay City Police Office can now heave a sigh of relief.

This after Philippine National Police (PNP) chief, Director General Oscar Albayalde, voided the the two-week ultimatum he imposed on the the two police officials to solve the  January 22 ambush incident involving San Fernando Mayor Lakambini Reluya or they would be sacked.

Chief Superintendent Debold Sinas, Police Regional Office in Central Visayas (PRO-7), announced Albayalde’s voiding of the ultimatum during a press briefing on Saturday, February 9.

Sinas said that Albayalde was satisfied with the progress of the investigation on the Reluya ambush when the progress report on the case was presented to the PNP chief in Camp Crame on February 8.

“Wala nang ultimatum… The director general told us that he was happy and satisfied,” said Sinas.

He also said the PNP director general instructed them to pursue the primary suspects of the case, Jerome Labitad and Felix Abacajan Jr. to identify the mastermind.

Last January 23, Albayalde announced that Senior Superintendent Manuel Abrugena, and Chief Inspector Marlu Conag, chiefs of CPPO and Talisay City Police Office respectively, will be sacked if they could not solve the ambush of the Reluyas within two weeks.

The police cordon the crime scene where San Fernando Mayor Lakambini Reluya and her group, who were in a van, were ambushed in this January 22, 2019 photo.| CDND file photo

READ MORE: Reluya ambush ‘partially solved’ as deadline expires

The deadline expired last Wednesday, February 6. Police tagged Labitad and Abacajan as the ‘primary suspects’ of the case, based from the testimonies they secured from their witnesses, including Reluya herself.

Both Labitad and Abacajan, who are still at large, were allegedly hired as hitmen for self-confessed drug lord Franz Sabalones.

READ MORE: Police battle gun-for-hire group believed to be behind the Reluya ambush but suspects escaped

Reluya, and her husband Ricardo ‘Nonoy’ Reluya, together with four others, were waylaid on January 22 along the highway in Barangay Linao, Talisay City.

Reluya, and two of her staff, survived the tragedy but her husband, and the three more individuals identified as Allan Bayot (driver of the van), and Ricky Montenora (San Fernando Local Economic and Investment Promotion Officer) were already dead when responders arrived in the area./dbs

READ MORE: Mayor Reluya speaks out, calls husband’s ambush-slay a ‘barbaric act’ and vows she will not be cowed

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