Hundreds flee in Maguindanao as 2 rival political clans clash

KIDAPAWAN CITY (Courtesy of MindaNews/15 April) — Hundreds of families abandoned their
farms and homes in Pagalungan town in Maguindanao due to fear of being caught
in a crossfire of two warring political clans.

05midsayap1.jpgSome evacuees sought refuge with their relatives in nearby Pagagawan
municipality while others were accommodated at the Madrasah School in Pikit,
North Cotabato.

DXND volunteer reporter Andrew Corpuz reported that the tension between the
two political clans erupted Saturday dawn prompting the residence of Barangay
Tugal and neighboring villages to move to safer areas. (MindaNews file photo taken in Midsayap in January in another evacuation incident) North Cotabato police provincial director Supt. Federico Dulay confirmed that
politics caused a shootout between two clans in Pagalungan on Saturday dawn.

Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) spokesperson Eid Kabalu identified the
warring rivals as former Association of Barangay Chairmen (ABC) president
Mokammad Andoy and former Maguindanao Governor and incumbent Pagalungan Vice
Mayor Datu Norodin Matalam.

Kabalu said that as of 6:30 Saturday night fighting between the two clans had
spilled into Pendatun Street, Barangay Poblacion of Pagalungan, some 700
meters away from the Cotabato-Davao highway.

He disclosed that followers of the warring clans possess high-powered firearms.

“We monitored that some members of the Cafgu joined the fighting. Some Cafgu
members’ kasi belonged to the warring clans,” he told DXND Radio for Peace.

Kabalu said that apparently both sides sustained casualties but that the MILF
was still validating reports from the areas affected.

Kabalu said troops from the 602nd Infantry Brigade based in Carmen, North
Cotabato have been deployed in Pagalungan since last night to ensure the
security of commuters passing the Cotabato-Davao highway.

MindaNews had tried to contact Col. Pedro Soria, Brigade commander, since last
night but he did not answer his mobile phone. (Williamor A. Magbanua/MindaNews)

About mindanaw

A Journalist from Mindanao

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