NBI conducts parallel probe on La Union ambush

MANILA — Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra on Monday said he has tasked the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to conduct its independent investigation on the ambush of Balaoan, La Union Mayor Aleli Concepcion and her father, Vice Mayor Alfred Concepcion.

“I will now issue a department order. The victims’ families have asked the NBI to conduct the investigation,” Guevarra told reporters.

Last week, the La Union Police Provincial Office (PPO) formed a special investigation task group (SITG) to probe the attack.

Mayor Aleli Concepcion and vice mayor Alfred Concepcion, together with their aide Mike Ulep among others, were aboard a Toyota Innova van and Hyundai Starex van on their way to the municipal hall and were only a few hundred meters away from their house when the suspects fired at them at 8:10 a.m..

Ulep died on the spot, while Alfred and Aleli were rushed to Balaoan District Hospital. They were later transferred to another hospital, but the vice mayor eventually died.

Due to three separate attacks on local officials, the Philippine National Police (PNP) placed the province of La Union on the election “hotspot list” for next year’s mid-term polls.

Last October, Supiden, La Union Mayor Alexander Boquing was waylaid by armed men.

Former La Union (2nd District) Rep. Eufranio Eriguel was also assassinated last May. Benjamin Pulta/PNA-northboundasia.com