MANILA – Armed with a search warrant, Ozamis City police raided at dawn Sunday the house of city mayor Reynaldo Parojinog on reports of guns being illegally kept, and at least 12 people are dead in an “engagement,” initial reports said.
Senior Supt. Jason de Guzman, head of the Misamis Occidental provincial police office, said the CIDG had asked for help of the local police to serve a warrant, but that the combined team was immediately greeted with gunfire as they approached the area in Lawis district.
He could not confirm reports that the mayor himself was gunned down, along with his sibling, board member Octavio Parojinog, and his wife.
The mayor’s daughter Vice Mayor Nova Parojinog, who was at the scene, was unharmed but is under detention. Her house was covered by the warrant.
“Madilim po at medyo brownout pa po una…May putok po na sumalubong sa mga tropa natin [It was dark and there was a brownout; gunshots greeted our forces],” Senior Supt. de Guzman told DzBB.
He said he asked the SOCO team to check the farm of the mayor as well, because the farm was also covered by the warrant.
An assortment of guns, including M-16s and .45 caliber pistols, were found along with grenades, de Guzman added.
Drugs and money were also found, police said.
The CIDG is still doing an inventory of firearms, ammunition and grenades.
President Duterte had once publicly called out the mayor to “surrender more guns” and had tagged him as among those with alleged links to drug rings.