Mayor Bote of General Tinio, Nueva Ecija, killed in ambush

MANILA, Philippines (4th UPDATE) – Mayor Ferdinand Bote of General Tinio, Nueva Ecija, was shot dead on Tuesday afternoon, July 3.

This was confirmed to Rappler by Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Director General Oscar Albayalde, citing the initial police report of Cabanatuan City cops.

According to the police report, Bote was onboard his Toyota Fortuner along the  Barangay Imelda portion of Maharlika Highway at around 4:50 pm when he was ambushed by a motorcycle-riding suspect.

"He (Bote) was repeatedly shot with the use of [a] short firearm by [an] unidentified suspect," the police report states.

The 57-year-old mayor was rushed to nearby MV Gallego Cabanatuan General Hospital, but was declared dead on arrival. The suspect, police said, immediately fled to the east.

In a statement, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque vowed there would be a "fair and thorough investigation" into Bote's killing.

"We assure everyone that we would discharge the state obligation for every murder. We will spare no effort in getting to the bottom of this latest violent crime," Roque said.

Bote's ambush happened a day after another mayor, Antonio Halili of Tanauan City, Batangas, was killed by a sniper during a flag ceremony at the city hall. President Rodrigo Duterte claimed Halili was involved in the drug trade. (READ: Mayors, vice mayors killed under Duterte gov't–


Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers security, crime, and the city of Manila for Rappler. He was chosen as a Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs.