Mayor Halili had unresolved dispute with ‘former general’ – Albayalde

Rambo Talabong
(UPDATED) Philippine National Police chief Oscar Albayalde says Tanauan City Mayor Antonio Halili had a dispute with a 'high-ranking former general,' but he is not aware of the nature of the disagreement

KILLED. A life-size standee of Tanauan City Mayor Antonio Halili is displayed at his wake. Photo by Eloisa Lopez/Rappler

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – Philippine National Police (PNP) Director General Oscar Albayalde confirmed on Thursday, July 5, that the late Tanauan City Mayor Antonio Halili had an unresolved dispute with a “high-ranking former general.” 

Albayalde made the confirmation in a chance interview with reporters, when asked to comment on information that Halili had a land dispute with a former general. The top cop said, however, that he was not certain about the nature of the dispute.

“Meron din siyang nakaaway na former general, high-ranking…. Hindi ko lang sure kung ano talaga ang naging puno’t dulo ng away nila (He had a dispute with a former general who is high-ranking…. I’m just not sure about the details of their quarrel),” Albayalde said.

Pressed to confirm the identity of the former general, Albayalde said he has yet to confirm this with his fellow police officials. He also did not say whether the general was part of the PNP or the Armed Forces of the Philippines. (LOOK: ‘Sniper hole’ of Tanauan Mayor Halili’s killer)

Asked how long the dispute had been going on, the PNP chief said: “Medyo matagal-tagal na rin. I just don’t know kung taon na ‘yan pero (It’s been going on for some time. I just don’t know if it had been years already but) it’s going on actually before the incident.” 

Albayalde made the statement as police continue to search for leads in the case of Halili, who was shot dead Monday morning, July 2, during the weekly flag-raising ceremony in front of the city hall.

Calabarzon top cop Chief Superintendent Edward Carranza earlier said the attack on Halili was “well-planned” and left no clues in relation to the killer. The police have no suspects yet.

President Rodrigo Duterte earlier expressed his suspicion that the killing is drug-related, but the Halili family disputed this, and reiterated that the late mayor had no links to the illegal drug trade. – Rappler.com

Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers the House of Representatives and local governments for Rappler. Prior to this, he covered security and crime. He was named Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs. In 2021, he was selected as a journalism fellow by the Fellowships at Auschwitz for the Study of Professional Ethics.