Saturday, September 18, 2010

Gunman attacks village official inside Zamboanga hospital

ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / Sept. 18, 2010) – A village official who was shot and wounded in an attack in Zamboanga City escaped death the second time after he was attacked inside a hospital in Zamboanga City in the southern Philippines.

Edgar Mali, who was recuperating at the state-run Zamboanga Medical Center for gunshot wounds in an earlier attack, had been shot twice by one of two unidentified gunman who entered his ward late Friday.

The gunman and his accomplice fled immediately after the shooting leaving behind the bloodied official slumped on his bed. No individual claimed responsibility for the daring attack.

It was unknown how the gunman was able to sneak with his gun, but the hospital’s security is notoriously poor and the few private guards manning its compound are ill-equipped.

The hospital also has no security cameras and visitors come and go without even passing through security checks.

The motive of the attack was unknown, but Mali was shot recently while driving his motorcycle. It was not the first time that a village official was attacked in Zamboanga City where clan war or family feud are not uncommon.

Clan war or locally known as “rido” is common in many parts of the southern Philippines. The U.S. Agency for International Development and think-tank Asia Foundation have said more than 3,000 people have been killed over the past seven decades in family feuds in the southern Philippines.

In Zamboanga City, more than two dozen vengeance killings occurred in recent months in three villages involving Christian and Muslim families. And this is also common in Basilan, Sulu, Maguindanao and other parts of the Muslim autonomous region in Mindanao.

Rido can involve disputes among family members or among two or more rival families, pitting neighbors or different ethnic groups against each other. The disputes center on issues of land, money, marriage or political power and involve revenge killings.

The violence increases with each act of retaliation, broadening to include those not directly involved in the dispute, including women and children, according to the Asia Foundation, adding, some feuds lasted for decades. (Mindanao Examiner)

No comments: