BACOLOD CITY, May 15 (PNA) — A defeated independent candidate for councilor in the town of Don Salvador Benedicto in Negros Occidental was shot dead by two unidentified gunmen Wednesday.
Although the investigators could not yet determine the motive of the killing, mayor-elect Atty. Jomax Ortiz firmly believed that the death of Roland Apellido was “politically-motivated”.
Ortiz said that his ally was very outspoken against the wrongdoings of his rival — the De La Cruz family who has been ruling the town for years.
The victim’s cousin-turned-rival, Roger Apellido of the United Negros Alliance (UNEGA), on the other hand, was elected as number one councilor of the town.
The incident in Don Salvador Benedicto also left another fatality but his identity remained unavailable as of press time.
Ortiz said the incident was tragic and uncalled for. He directed the policemen in the town to launch an in-depth investigation of Apellido’s assassination.
Ortiz was proclaimed as new mayor of the town Tuesday. He defeated incumbent mayor Marxlene De La Cruz of UNEGA by 741, not 744 votes as previously reported.
The De La Cruz family suffered triple defeat in this year’s midterm election.
Marxlene De La Cruz’s mother Cynthia, who ran for vice mayor, lost to independent candidate Saing Delantar.
His father, Board Member Nehemias De La Cruz, also lost to re-elected congressman Julio Ledesma IV in the first district of the province.
The only political survivor of their family is his brother Nehemia De La Cruz, who won as councilor of the town. (PNA)