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Nograles condemns killing of Mindanao board member

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Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles on Monday strongly condemned the weekend killing of a local Mindanao official as “senseless” and called on the Philippines National Police (PNP) to speed up investigations after a special task force was formed to look into the incident.

Wenefredo Oloferres, a Board member of San Jose town in Dinagat province was gunned down by an unidentified assailant in Surigao City last Sunday morning as he and his partner were riding their motorcycle towards their residence from a jogging session.

According to eyewitness accounts, Oloferres was overtaken and shot once at the head by a person on a black Honda motorcycle.

The official was brought to the Caraga Regional Hospital but was pronounced dead on arrival.

“The PNP has offered a 100 thousand peso reward to speed up the investigation and to encourage the furnishing of useful leads. We’re closely coordinating with the families and the local government on how to address the aftermath of this shooting. We’ve been assured that this is an isolated occurence,” stressed Nograles, who is Cabinet Officer for Regional Development and Security (CORDS) for Region13 or the CARAGA Region.

The Cabinet Secretary, a three-term Davao City 1st district congressman, likewise made assurances that the peace and security situation in Mindanao was improving, offering as proof the recent mass surrender of 396 communist New People’s Army (NPA) supporters from different Surigao del Norte towns last week.

The surrenders occurred in two separate locations, with 244 in Malimono town while 152 were at the headquarters of the Armed Forces of the Philippines’ 30th Infantry Battalion in Sta. Cruz, Placer.

“The isolated killing of Board Member Oloferres notwithstanding, we can obviously see a vast improvement of the security situation in Mindanao.”

“The national government will definitely continue working towards translating these results into more economic activity and improved livelihoods for our constituents there. We are securely realizing the full potential and promise of Mindanao,” Nograles noted.

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